United States Treaty Series/Volume 1/Observance of neutral territory in Samoa

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Observance of neutral territory in Samoa  (1879) 


  • Agreement signed at Apia, Samoa, May 29 and 31, 1879
  • Superseded April 12, 1890, by the General Act of June 14, 1889,[1] with respect to those provisions with which the General Act was inconsistent; annulled in entirety February 16, 1900, by convention of December 2, 1899[2]

Department of State files; enclosure to despatch no. 67 of June 4, 1879, from the U.S. consulate at Apia, Samoa


We hereby promise to the representatives appointed by the Great Governments in Apia.

1. We will truly observe the neutrality of the territory bounded by the promontory of Tiapepe and bounded by Letogo, and will not collect together within these two places.

The boundary is established as follows: It begins at the promontory of Tiapepe and goes inland from there in Suisega through the Suisega Reservation, continues straight across following the military road; then the boundary goes from there to Suisega and comes over Vaea behind the house of the Roman Catholic missionaries, crossing behind the houses of Tanumamanono where it joins with Lafalafa and crosses to the water of Letogo. It returns to the Falane Plantation and its land and houses, continuing to the cemetery and Rev. Weber's land and houses, a short distance inland from Tanumamanono.

2. If war shall break out then we will not again raise our flag over the neutral territory; then also the representatives appointed to our Government shall go away from Mulinuu; it is prohibited also to the armies [war parties][3] to assemble or remain on the neutral territory when the war takes place, or to pass over the boundaries.

3. We will inform the representatives appointed by the Great Governments in Apia of the day when the war commences.

Apia 29 May 1879

We are the representatives appointed, the Chiefs of the Taimua of the Government of Samoa.

  • Samoa
  • Letuli
  • Lavea
  • Amoa

Witnesses to signatures and approved by

[SEAL] Th Weber
Imperial German Consul
[SEAL] Robt. S. Swanston
H.B.M. Actg Consul
[SEAL] Thomas M. Dawson
United States Consul

[The U.S. consul stated that the foregoing was agreed to and signed as a separate document at Apia on May 31 by representatives of Malietoa. The May 31 document concluded as follows: "We are the representatives appointed by Manono and the Tuamasaga: Taupau, Teiatauali sa, Mataafa, Tuiatafa." The U.S. consul noted that the May 31 document was also witnessed and approved by the same U.S., British, and German consuls.]


  1. TS 313, post, p. 116.
  2. TS 314, post, p. 276.
  3. Bracketed material inserted by U.S. consul in his translation.

This work is in the public domain in the United States because it is a work of the United States federal government (see 17 U.S.C. 105).