Wednesday, February 28, 2018


Unlike other islands which were colonised and the populations replaced, the Samoan people's ancestors reached their country about 3,500 years ago. Only a small minority are not indigenous. In most countries, that is the other way around. People tend to wander. Including Samoans! The island group, including American Samoa (still part of the US) were known as the "Navigator Islands" because of their seafaring skills. Although Europeans visited from 1722, contact was limited until 1830s when English missionaries and traders began arriving. Germany, the United States and Britain started backing military efforts to support their respective business interests. Backing different local groups, there was an eight-year Civil War (1886-1894). A proxy for war between colonial powers. In 1899, all three sent warships resulting in the Somoas being divided between Germany and the US. Britain backed off in exchange for Tonga. New Zealand took over after World War I, and independence came (for what was known as Western Samoa until 1997) in 1962.

Samoa v South Africa

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