Samoan History

Historical Events

  • 1889-03-15 6 US & German warships sunk by a typhoon in Apia harbour, Samoa, 200 die
  • 1892-07-04 Western Samoa changes the International Date Line, so that year there were 367 days in this country, with two occurrences of Monday, July 4
  • 1899-12-02 US & Germany agree to divide Samoa between them
  • 1900-01-16 The United States Senate accepts the Anglo-German treaty of 1899 in which the United Kingdom renounces its claims to the Samoan islands
  • 1900-01-16 The US gains control over Tutuila in Samoa and several smaller Pacific islands
  • 1904-07-16 Islands of Manu'a group (Samoa) ceded to US by their chiefs
  • 1914-08-29 New Zealand forces capture German Samoa

The 1918 Flu Pandemic

1918-11-07 The 1918 influenza epidemic spreads to Western Samoa, killing 7,542 (about 20% of the population) by the end of the year

Historic Event

1925-08-31 Anthropologist Margaret Mead first arrives in Samoa

  • 1962-01-01 Western Samoa gains independence from New Zealand Susuga Malietoa Tanumafili II becomes co-chief of Western Samoa
  • 1963-04-05 Susuga Malietoa Tanumafili II becomes chief of Western Samoa
  • 1976-12-15 Samoa becomes a member of the UN
  • 2009-09-29 An 8.0 magnitude earthquake near the Samoan Islands causes a tsunami

Famous Birthdays

Margaret Mead

1901-12-16 Margaret Mead, American anthropologist (Coming of Age in Samoa, Thoughts & Female), born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (d. 1978)

  • 1909-04-17 Humphrey Sims Moore, British pacifist and journalist (founder of Peace News), born in Samoa (d. 1995)
  • 1913-01-04 Malietoa Tanumafili II, King of West-Samoa (1962- )
  • 1945-04-14 Tuilaepa Aiono Sailele Malielegaoi, 8th Prime Minister of Samoa, born in Lepa, Samoa
  • 1966-10-02 Rodney Anoa'i (aka Yokozuna), Samoan-American professional wrestler (WWF/NJPW/AWA), born in San Francisco, California (d. 2000)
  • 1966-11-07 Murphy Su'a, New Zealand cricket pace bowler (NZ left-arm of Samoan parents), born in Whanganui, New Zealand
  • 1972-11-21 David Tua, Samoan boxer
  • 1973-03-28 Eddie Fatu, Samoan professional wrestler
  • 1974-07-23 Sonny Siaki, Samoan-born professional wrestler, born in Pago Pago, American Samoa
  • 1976-08-12 Henry Tuilagi, Samoan rugby player
  • 1979-03-17 Samoa Joe, Samoan professional wrestler
  • 1980-07-31 Mils Muliaina, New Zealand and Waikato rugby player, born in Salesi, Samoa
  • 1980-11-04 Jerry Collins, New Zealand rugby union flanker, #8 (48 caps; Wellington Hurricanes, Toulon, Ospreys, Narbonne), born in Apia, Samoa (d. 2015)

Famous Deaths

  • 1999-03-19 Tofilau Eti Alesana, former Prime Minister of Samoa (b. 1924)
  • 2007-05-11 Malietoa Tanumafili II, Sovereign Ruler of Samoa, dies at 94
  • 2015-06-05 Jerry Collins, New Zealand rugby union flanker, #8 (48 caps; Wellington Hurricanes, Toulon, Ospreys, Narbonne), dies in a car crash at 34