List of colonial governors of Samoa

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Hoisting the German flag at Mulinu'u, Upolu on 1 March 1900.
Kaiser-Wilhelmsland, the Bismarck Archipelago and the Samoan Islands (bordered in red), 1905.
The German colonial empire in the Pacific Ocean. German Samoa is shown in red.
Hoisting the Union Jack at Apia, Upolu on 30 August 1914.
Flag of the Governor of the Western Samoa Trust Territory.
League of Nations mandates in the Pacific Ocean. The Western Samoa Trust Territory (bordered in yellow) is number 4.

This article lists the colonial governors of Samoa (or Western Samoa), from the establishment of German Samoa in 1900 until the independence of the Western Samoa Trust Territory in 1962.


(Dates in italics indicate de facto continuation of office)

Tenure Portrait Incumbent Notes
In 1900, according to the Tripartite Convention and following the Second Samoan Civil War, the Samoan Islands were annexed by the German Empire, except for the part that is to become American Samoa.[1]
Wilhelm II, the German Emperor, is styled "Tupu Sili o Samoa" ("Paramount King of Samoa").
Governors of German Samoa (1900–1914)
1 March 1900 to 19 December 1911 Bundesarchiv Bild 183-R73059, Wilhelm Solf.jpg Wilhelm Heinrich Solf Afterwards served as the Secretary of State in the Reichskolonialamt, between 1911–1918
19 December 1911 to 29 August 1914 No image.svg Erich Schultz-Ewerth [de] Acting to 19 June 1912
In 1914, as part of the Asian and Pacific theatre of World War I, an expeditionary force from the Dominion of New Zealand called the Samoa Expeditionary Force (SEF) captured and occupied the territory. In 1920, the territory was turned into a League of Nations mandate, administered by New Zealand. In 1946, the mandate was reformed as a United Nations trust territory and continued to be administered by New Zealand.
Administrators of Western Samoa (1914–1948)
29 August 1914 to 28 January 1919 Col. Logan, Samoa, 1914.jpg Colonel Robert Logan
28 January 1919 to 16 March 1923 No image.svg Robert Ward Tate
16 March 1923 to 8 April 1928 Gsrichardson, 1920.jpg George Spafford Richardson From 3 June 1925, Sir George Spafford Richardson
5 May 1928 to 3 April 1931 No image.svg Stephen Shepherd Allen
18 April 1931 to 1935 BG H Hart.jpg Herbert Ernest Hart
25 July 1935 to 1946 No image.svg Alfred Clarke Turnbull From 1942, Sir Alfred Clarke Turnbull; acting to 1943
1946 to 10 March 1948 No image.svg Francis William Voelcker
High Commissioners of Western Samoa (1948–1961)
10 March 1948 to 1949 No image.svg Francis William Voelcker
March 1949 to February 1960 No image.svg Guy Richardson Powles
February 1960 to 31 December 1961 No image.svg John Bird Wright Acting to June 1960

On 1 January 1962, Western Samoa achieved independence following the passage of the 1961 referendum. For a list of heads of state after independence, see O le Ao o le Malo.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Ryden, The Foreign Policy of the United States in Relation to Samoa, p. 574; Great Britain vacated all claims to Samoa and accepted as quid pro quo termination of German rights in Tonga and certain areas in the Solomon Islands and in West Africa.

External links[edit]