MY FAMILY HISTORY

AND

SAMOA

THERE ARE MANY LEGENDS AND STORIES ABOUT SAMOA
THAT EXIST TODAY.
MANY BOOKS WRITTEN AS WELL
SOME EXAGGERATED OR CHANGED
AS IT WAS WRITTEN.
HERE HOWEVER,
YOU WILL SEE
A LITTLE MORE
THAT WAS NEVER WRITTEN
ORIGINS AS WELL AS THE NAMES OF THOSE
WHO'S LIVES BECAME THAT OF LEGEND
THERE ARE MANY OTHER GAFAS IN THIS WORLD
THIS VERY UNIQUE ONE I JUST HAPPEN TO BE A PART OF, AS WELL

- JOSEPH MATUA

(SON OF JULIE TUMAMA SHAW SOIMAVI TAGALOALAGI)

Late Great grandmother Ene Alefaio Auvaa in Savaii, Western Samoa
My late great grandmother in Savaii, Western Samoa

This page is dedicated to my late great grandmother, Ene Alefaio Auva'a,
who taught me my first words in samoan, taught me about God,
and taught me how to say my first prayer.
She was well over 100 years old when she taught me all this as a child. Even though she died, I wish she could see me now and know I have kept our history alive. May God always bless her for staying alive long enough to pass on our family history from our ancestors to her. From her to my mother. From my mother to me.
- Joseph Matua

Ene Alefaio Auva'a

(great grandmother of Joseph Matua)
Ene Alefaio Auva'a was the great grandaughter of Nafanua - "known by many samoans as the legendary goddess of war"
Born: February 29, 1873
Died: October 9, 1986
at the age of 113
Born in 1873, My great grandmother Ene was the daughter of Alefaio Auva'a & Sina La'asaga Alipa Liava'a in the village of Falealupo, in Savaii.

Ene Alefaio Auva'a was married to my great grandfather Moemai Euta (the only son of Moemai Sosene as well as the nephew of Malietoa Vainu'upo) whose lineage comes from the other side of my family tree. It was their union that brought together both of their family histories into one. Each making sure that our legendary family history was kept alive.

 

Moemai Euta in Savaii
Moemai Euta who was a faifeau
in Western Samoa.
This old photo was taken over 45 years ago
in Western Samoa
My late great grandfather
Moemai Euta

Moemai Euta

(great grandfather of Joseph Matua)
Moemai Euta was the son of Moemai Sosene
Moemai Euta was also the nephew of Malietoa Vainu'upo
My great grandfather Moemai Euta was the only son of Moemai Sosene &  Sina Fonoti Matautia in the village of Iva, in Savaii.
Moemai Euta was also the nephew of Malietoa Vainu'upo

Since Malietoa Vainu'upo & Euta's father, Moemai Sosene were half brothers.

Moemai Euta was married to my great grandmother Ene Alefaio Auva'a (the great grandaughter of Nafanua)

.

.

..

LEGEND OF SINA III part 1

(GREAT X 5 GRANDMOTHER)

FAMILY SAMOAN LEGEND
Narrated by: Julie Tumama Shaw Soimavi Tagaloalagi

LEGEND HAS IT THAT "KING LAU"
AND "QUEEN SINA II,
TURNED THEMSELVES INTO STONE AFTER FEARING THAT THEIR DAUGHTER
WAS EATEN BY A TUNA LIVING IN THE WATER.
THE TUNA HAPPENED TO BE THE PET OF THEIR DAUGHTER, SINA III.
SINA III WAS NOT EATEN, BUT HAD REALLY RUN AWAY OUT OF FEAR
TO SAFUNE VILLAGE TO HER UNCLE, KING ALIPA TULIPA LIAVA'A TAGALOALAGI
(WHO IS ALSO GREAT X 4 GRANDFATHER FROM THE OTHER PART OF FAMILY TREE).
SHE WENT TO BATH IN THE WATERS IN SAFUNE, BUT SAW THE TUNA ONCE AGAIN.
THE TUNA THEN LOOKED AT SINA III, SO SHE GOT ANGRY
AND SAID "A'O MATA EA OLE ALELO".
( THE WATERS IN SAFUNE VILLAGE IS NAMED "MATAOLEALELO")
SINA III WAS AFRAID OF THE TUNA THAT HAD ALREADY EATEN THE PEOPLE
OUT OF ANGER FOR "THE FIRST FAUMUINA
DOING SOMETHING VERY UNSPEAKABLE
TO "QUEEN SINA II".
SINA III THEN RAN AWAY FROM SAFUNE BACK TO SAIPIPI
WHERE SHE FOUND HER PARENTS ALMOST COMPLETELY TURNED TO STONE.
SHE THEN RAN AWAY FROM SAIPIPI VILLAGE TO ILIILI VILLAGE.
WHILE IN ILIILI VILLAGE, SHE BATHED HERSELF IN THE WATERS THERE,
BUT THEN SAW THE TUNA AGAIN AND BEGAN TO CRY.
SHE LOVED HER TUNA VERY MUCH BUT WAS NOW SCARED OF IT TOO.
(THE WATERS THERE ARE NAMED "LOIMATA VAI" FOR THE TEARS OF SINA III,
THAT SHE HAD FOR HER PET)
OUT OF HIS LOVE FOR SINA III, THE TUNA ALLOWED THE PEOPLE
IN THE VILLAGES OF ILIILI AND VAITOGI TO KILL HIM,
BUT HE TOLD SINA III TO TELL THE VILLAGERS TO GIVE HER HIS HEAD.
SHE WAS TO PLANT HIS HEAD IN THE UTUMALAMA
IN MOTU O SINA (NOW KNOWN AS SAVAII)
IT IS SAID THAT THE FIRST COCONUT TREE IN THE WORLD
WAS CREATED FROM THE HEAD OF THE TUNA.
A FINAL GIFT FROM THE TUNA TO QUEEN SINA III

THE END



This part of our oral family history
was
Passed down by my mother,
Julie Tumama Shaw Soimavi Tagaloalagi.
Passed down to her by her grandmother, Ene Alefaio Auva'a.
Passed down to Ene Alefaio Auva'a by her mother,
Sina Laasaga Alipa Tulipa Liava'a Tagaloalagi, and so on....

Sina Laasaga Alipa Tulipa Liava'a Tagaloalagi (my great x 2 grandmother)
born: February 14, 1732

Ene Alefaio Auva'a (my great grandmother)
born: February 29, 1873
died: October 9, 1986

My great grandparents and ancestors lived much longer in
the old days of Samoa.
Unlike the ages and environment of people today

IMPORTANT NOTE:

It is said that the 2 stones that were King Lau
& Queen Sina II that used to be in Saipipi village waters
were excavated and stolen by archaeologists and a millionaire
from the United States.

The 2 stones of King Lau and Queen Sina II were then relocated
to a museum within the United States.

Whether the stones are actually those of both my great x 6 grandparents
or not doesnt matter. To my family, it is our family history.

 

* This section was originally created in the 1990's.  Some information may have updated since then.*

HOW KING TAGALOALAGI GAVE THE TITLE TO VAI'I

AN EVENT
Narrated by: Julie Tumama Shaw Soimavi Tagaloalagi

 

AROUND 1802, SILI TUPUA AUAU LEFAO,
THE MOTHER OF MALIETOA MALALA'S WIFE,
WAS BELIEVED TO HAVE BEEN TURNED INTO A TURTLE
IN VAITOGI VILLAGE.
THE GRANDDAUGHTER WAS BELIEVED TO HAVE ALSO
BEEN TURNED INTO A SHARK IN VAITOGI VILLAGE ALONG WITH
HER GRANDMOTHER, SILI TUPUA AUAU LEFAO
IT WAS FOR THIS REASON WHY
KING FONOTI TAGALOALAGI ALONG WITH MOEMAI TOFILAU
AND HIS SON MALIETOA MALALA
WAS IN VAITOGI VILLAGE.
IT WAS ON THEIR RETURN HOME TO IVA VILLAGE
THAT THE SHIP THEY WERE ON HAD RUN OUT OF WATER.
IT WAS BECAUSE OF THIS REASON WHY THEY
STOPPED IN MOTU O ILO. KING FONOTI TAGALOALAGI THEN SENT
MALIETOA MALALA TO RETRIEVE WATER FOR THE SHIP.
WHILE GOING FOR WATER, MALIETOA MALALA SAW MANY
IN MOTU O ILO FIGHTING AND KILLING EACH OTHER.
WHILE MALIETOA MALALA WAS TRYING TO STOP THE FIGHTING,
VAI'I THREW A SPEAR AND HIT MALIETOA MALALA INJURING HIM.
KING FONOTI TAGALOALAGI AND MOEMAI TOFILAU
(MALIETOA MALALA'S FATHER) WAITING FOR A LONG TIME
ON THE SHIP, BEGAN TO WONDER WHY MALIETOA MALALA
HAD NOT YET RETURNED.
THEY WENT TO THE VILLAGE AND FOUND MALIETOA MALALA
SEVERELY INJURED. MALIETOA MALALA EVENTUALLY DIED
FROM HIS INJURIES. HE WAS THEN BURIED IN MOTU O ILO.
KING FONOTI TAGALOALAGI
THEN CHANGED THE NAME
OF THE ISLAND OF MOTU O ILO TO MOTU O MANU'A.
NOW KNOWN TODAY AS THE ISLAND OF MANU'A.
KING FONOTI TAGALOALAGI
ALSO GAVE THE TITLE TUIMANU'A TO VAI'I.
TUI MEANS CHIEF
MANU'A MEANS INJURY
THIS IS HOW TUIMANUA RECEIVED HIS NAME....

THE END

This part of our oral history in Samoa
was
Passed down by my mother,
Julie Tumama Shaw Soimavi Tagaloalagi.
Passed down to her by her grandmother, Ene Alefaio Auva'a.
Passed down to Ene Alefaio Auva'a by her mother,
Sina Laasaga Alipa Tulipa Liava'a Tagaloalagi, and so on....

IMPORTANT NOTE:

MALIETOA MALALA
WAS
THE FATHER OF MOEMAI SOSENE
AND
THE GRANDFATHER OF MOEMAI EUTA

THE HEAD OF STATE OF SAMOA IN 1998:
MALIETOA TANUMAFILI I

THE PRIME MINISTER OF SAMOA IN 1998:
TOFILAU ALESANA
(Tofilau Alesana is descended from the sister of Moemai Tofilau.)

 

* This section was originally created in the 1990's.  Some information may have updated since then.  *

 

A FEW MALIETOA HISTORIES

Narrated by: Julie Tumama Shaw Soimavi Tagaloalagi

 

MALIETOA MALALA

Received the Malietoa title
from King Fonoti Tagaloalagi for his many victories
in battle and war.

Malietoa Malala was the son of Moemai Tofilau.

Malietoa Malala had also burned alive the TuiToga named
Leutogi Tapuitea Taufaahau when he returned back
to Samoa in 1800,
after kidnapping Queen Sina Alipa Tulipa Liava'a Tagaloalagi
around 1792 while King Alipa Tulipa Liavaa Tagaloalagi
left to France.

King Alipa Tulipa Liavaa Tagaloalalgi
and his daughter Queen Sina Alipa Tulipa Liava'a Tagaloalagi
were then believed to have been turned to stone.

King Fonoti Tagaloalagi gave the
children of Leutogi Tapuitea Taufaahau
the throne of Tonga to resolve the war between Samoa and Tonga
caused by the kidnapping of Queen Sina Alipa Tulipa Liava'a Tagaloalagi
and the reason why Malietoa Malala burned the chief of Tonga alive.

MALIETOA VAINU'UPO

The second Malietoa and son of Malietoa Malala.
Vainuupo had 2 daughters named Salafai and Salaia.
Salafai was married to Vui Tuilaepa of Lano village
and Manono. After Malietoa Vainu'upo was in a meeting
in a cave with his army, he was surrounded and trapped by Tuiatua
and his armies. Malietoa Vainu'upo's other daughter Salaia
was then given to Tuiatua to be his wife to solve the fighting
between Upolu and Motu O Sina (Savaii).
Malietoa then renamed Motu O Sina
to Motu O Salafai (now known as Savaii - renamed again by
Moemai Sosene, the brother of Malietoa Vainuupo).
Malietoa Vainu'upo also renamed
Motu O Taema to Motu O Salaia (now known as Tutuila).

Malietoa Vainu'upo also welcomed
the London Missionary Society missionaries Bob and William
when they arrived there, in Sapapalii.
The missionaries arrived in to Avao village.
The Holy Bible was interpreted in Avao village
that same year from english to samoan in 1817 to early 1824.

MALIETOA LAAULI

The son of Salamasina (the sister of Malietoa Malala).
Malietoa Laauli had a son named Tavita Laupepa.
After Malietoa Laauli died, Tavita Laupepa (son of Malietoa Laauli)
and Tuilaepa (son of Salafai Malietoa) both fought over the title
of Malietoa that ended up as one of the first cases
that opened the courts of Samoa in the time of the Kaiser of Germany.
The courts ended up awarding the title of Malietoa to both
Tavita Laupepa and Tuilaepa as a result.
This important case marked the beginning
of the courthouse of Samoa.

MALIETOA TAVITA

Malietoa Tavita Laupepa was the son of Malietoa Laauli.

Malietoa Tavita Laupepa had a son from the granddaughter
of Malietoa Tuilaepa.
Malietoa Tuilaepa said to Malietoa Tavita,
"Laupepa lautala lau tusi lea, ua tanu le fili"
The son was named Tanumafili.

MALIETOA TANUMAFILI - THE FIRST

Married to the daughter of Ao O Matagi in Malie village.

The oldest of his children became Malietoa Tanumafili II
who married Tunu. Malietoa Tanumafili II had more children
by different mothers.

This part of our oral family history in Samoa
was
Passed down to Julie Tumama Shaw Soimavi Tagaloalagi.
Passed down to her by her grandfather, Moemai Euta
and so on....

IMPORTANT NOTE:

Many have claimed that Tuna ma Fata were the first Malietoa.

However,

TUNA was created by the name of Queen Sina III's pet.
FATA was created by the people who would carry the bed of Moemai.
This was called FOFOGA O FATA
or
FOFOGA O MOEMAI

That is how the FATA title was created.

Our family tree and all our ancestors have been and always been the same history.
yet...
Only the Malietoa side of family history has so many versions and  claims of who was the first Malietoa.

Many people have read altered versions in books and so forth
of Samoan lineage in history.

FAMILY HISTORY THAT WAS ALSO BEING REVISED,
JUST SO THAT IT WOULDNT CONTRADICT WITH ANY OF THEIR VERSIONS!

 

The samoan people and their gafas came long before any books.

 

Here are some other thoughts to keep in mind:

Even though one may have held a matai or other title in the past, their children or descendants would keep the title as their last name. Years later however, history of the descendants names would be confused and switched to make it seem as if more held that matai or other title also. When in fact, they didn't. This is one major reason why there is so much confusion concerning samoan history.

Even today, many aigas or families, out of respect, would take the first name of their father as their last name. Confusion would come later on however, since some families with legitimate last names would be the same as families that took their father's first name as their last name. Thus making one family thinking they had certain rights, claims, land, and so forth of the other legitimate aiga or family.

 

Here are some other info:

Saveasi'uleo was the son of Taema Tagaloalagi.
Savea name originated from the Saveasi'uleo name

Savea (the in-laws of the Malietoa family).

Another Fitisemanu was the grand child of Salafai
(one of the 2 daughters of Malietoa Vainu'upo)
as well as was the chief of police in Samoa in 1954-up

Matangi was the grandchild of Malietoa Tanumafili I.

Tia (known also by the real name of Muagututia -
the grandkids and so on of Malietoa Tuilaepa and Malietoa Tavita)

Laulauofolasa were the in-laws of the Malietoa family

Ainu'u & Aeono were in-laws of the Malietoa family

 

* This section was originally created in the 1990's.  Some information may have updated since then.  *

 

 

Grave of Moemai Euta in Western Samoa
2 paying respect at Moemai Euta grave
The grave of my great grandfather
Moemai Euta
Buried as a faifeau
in a humble grave
in Western Samoa

Grave of Moemai Euta

(great grandfather of Joseph Matua)
In 1956, Moemai Euta died in Lano village
where he was a faifeau.
.Moemai Euta was the son of Moemai Sosene
Moemai Euta was also the nephew of Malietoa Vainu'upo

.

..

 

MOEMAI HISTORY

(Narrated by Julie Tumama Shaw Soimavi Tagaloalagi)

 

Moemai Euta was indeed
the ONLY REAL son of Moemai Sosene and the key to the Moemai title
which is recorded.

Moemai Euta chose his grand nephew Moemai Saunoa
as the next Moemai. Moemai Saunoa also held the title of Auau
in Vaitogi village.
After Moemai Saunoa died suddenly,
Moemai Euta chose Moemai To (who got the Moemai title after becoming
the husband of the grand niece of Moemai Euta.) After Moemai To died,
Moemai Euta chose his other grand nephew, Moemai Ieti
to carry the Moemai title.

In 1956, Moemai Euta died in Lano village where he was a faifeau.

Moemai Euta's 4 sons Misikupa, Mose, Esekia, Talamai
& 3 daughters Sina "the oldest", Lupelele Euta Moemai, and Melania
returned to Iva village. Moemai Ieti died around 1958,
and Misikupa (son of Moemai Euta), unable to take the Moemai title
because he was a minister chose 4 to carry the Moemai title
after much in-fighting.

Moemai Mose (the 2nd son of Moemai Euta) automatically became
the holder of the Moemai title.

The other 3 that Misikupa had chose to carry the Moemai title
were the great grand nephews of Moemai Euta.
The other 3 were Moemai Kome (great grand nephew of Moemai Euta
and also son of Moemai Ieti), Moemai Sae (the other great grand nephew of Moemai Euta and also the son of Moemai To-who got the Moemai title after
becoming the husband of the grand niece of Moemai Euta),
and Moemai Talanu (another great grand nephew of Moemai Euta
and also son of Moemai Saunoa)

There are many that use the Moemai as a last name

but

Moemai Samasoni (the son of Misikupa Moemai
and grandson of Moemai Euta)

Moemai Sefo (son of Rosa Kleis, the grandson of Tofao Sosene Moemai,
and the grand nephew of Moemai Euta)

hold the legitimate Moemai title as of the date this webpage was created.

...as well as Moemai Talanu.

 

* This section was originally created in the 1990's.  Some information may have updated since then.  *

 

MORE SAMOAN HISTORY

COMING SOON...MAYBE.

THE TITLE OF MOEMAI

is now carried by:

MOEMAI SAMASONI

(son of Misikupa Moemai and grandson of Moemai Euta)

and

MOEMAI SEFO

(son of Rosa Kleis, the grandson of Tofao Sosene Moemai,
and the grand nephew of Moemai Euta)

and

MOEMAI TALANU

(great grand nephew of Moemai Euta and also son of Moemai Saunoa)

 

* This section was originally created in the 1990's.  Some information may have updated since then.  *

 

MY FAMILY TREE

Joseph Matua's - Samoa and I
click here

 

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