John Gould Moyer

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John Gould Moyer
31st Governor of American Samoa
In office
June 5, 1942 – February 8, 1944
Preceded by Laurence Wild
Succeeded by Allen Hobbs
Personal details
Born (1893-07-12)July 12, 1893
Chicago, Illinois
Died January 21, 1976(1976-01-21) (aged 82)
Honolulu, Hawaii
Alma mater United States Naval Academy
Occupation Naval officer
Military service
Allegiance  United States
Service/branch United States Navy Seal United States Navy
Rank US-O8 insignia.svg Rear admiral

John Gould Moyer (July 12, 1893 – January 21, 1976) was a United States Navy Rear admiral, and the 31st Governor of American Samoa from June 5, 1942 to February 8, 1944. He was born in Chicago, Illinois, but lived in both Indiana and Hawaii for much of his life. Moyer was admitted to the United States Naval Academy on June 16, 1910, and became an Ensign shortly upon graduation. He became a Commander in 1934, a Captain in 1939, and eventually a Rear admiral. During his governorship, Moyer recommended the tour of duty of the men under his command be reduced, and took over command of the United States Marines barracks previously under the control of Brigadier general Henry Louis Larsen.


Moyer was born in Chicago, Illinois.[1] He was born to Eva Gould Moyer; his grandfather was a longtime district judge in Indiana.[2] Moyer lived in Delphi, Indiana for much of his early life.[3] He died in Honolulu, Hawaii at the age of 82.[1]

Naval career[edit]

Moyer was admitted to the United States Naval Academy on June 16, 1910.[4] As an Ensign, he served on the USS South Carolina) in 1917.[5] He was promoted to the rank of Commander in 1934,[6] and President of the United States Franklin Roosevelt recommended Moyer for the rank of Captain in 1939.[3] He eventually became a Rear Admiral, and retired on June 30, 1949.[1]


Moyer took the office of Governor of American Samoa on June 5, 1942. During his governorship, Moyer suggested the tour of duty for military personnel in American Samoa be reduced from 18 to 12 months, believing that "the climate is bad for most Caucasians".[1] As the Pacific War drew westward, Moyer took control of the United States Marine barracks on the island, a command previously held by Henry Louis Larsen, a man with the short-lived position of Military Governor of Tutuila.[7] Moyer ceded the office to Captain Allen Hobbs on February 8, 1944.[7]


  1. ^ a b c d Sorensen, Stan; Joseph Theroux (2007). "The Samoan Historical Calendar, 1606-2007" (PDF). Government of American Samoa. pp. 23;156;167. Archived from the original (PDF) on 27 February 2009. Retrieved 1 May 2010. 
  2. ^ Proceedings of the Annual Meeting of the Indiana State Bar Association. Indiana: Indiana State Bar Association. 1916. p. 380. Retrieved 1 May 2010. 
  3. ^ a b United Press International (13 December 1939). "Promotion Lists are Approved". Berkeley Daily Gazette. Berkeley, California. p. 22. Retrieved 1 May 2010. 
  4. ^ Congressional Serial Set. Washington, D.C.: United States Government Printing Office. 1912. p. 135. Retrieved 1 May 2010. 
  5. ^ Bureau of Naval Personnel (1917). Register of the Commissioned and Warrant Officers of the United States Navy and Marine Corps and Reserve Officers on Active Duty. United States Government Printing Office. p. 64. Retrieved 1 May 2010. 
  6. ^ "Roosevelt Approves 46 Navy Promotions". The New York Times. New York City: The New York Times Company. 16 February 1934. p. 21. 
  7. ^ a b Sorensen, Stan (8 February 2008). "Historical Notes" (PDF). Tapuitea. Government of American Samoa. III (6): 2. Retrieved 30 April 2010.