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Cotabato City, the ancient capital town of Mindanao words "Kuta" for fort and "wato" for stone.  The place basically spreads around what is known as P.C. Hill..

Settlements in Cotabato City started as early as 1475.  The place developed as the capital town of Mindanao in the seventeenth centry under Sultan Dipatwan Qudarat, (reigned during this time).

In the nineteenth century when Sultan Makakua ruled, roads and wharves were constructed which gave rise to the birth of modern day Cotabato.  That kind of development enticed the inhabitants from Zamboanga and the Visayas to migrate and settle here.  The Chinese nationals who have long settled in Cotabato were assimilated into the population by intermarriages with the native Maguindanaons.

At the turn of the twentieth century, when the Americans started to rule the Philippines, Cotabato became the capital town of Cotabato province.  It remained as its capital until 1959, the time which Cotabato became a chartered city pursuant to Republic Act No. 2364.