Talofa! The 49th anniversary of Samoa‘s Independence Day took place this week on June 1. In honor of this event, I thought I’d share a couple of pictures from the Library of Congress collections and from my own trip (back in time) to Samoa in 2006.
The country previously known as Western Samoa (the change to just “Samoa” occurred in 1997) became independent on January 1, 1962 – although Independence Day is celebrated June 1. Prior to this it had been administered by New Zealand under a League of Nations mandate. This followed the capture of the country (on Britain’s behalf) from Germany in 1914 at the start of World War I. Germany, Britain, and the United States had previously agreed to formally partition the Samoan archipelago into German Samoa and American Samoa through a treaty signed in 1899.