The Documentation of Samoan Archaeological and Built Heritage Places and associated Oral Traditions Project by the Centre for Samoan Studies is funded by the US Ambassadors Fund for Cultural Preservation.
Samoa currently possesses no central database of archaeological sites or historic places and this presents a significant disadvantage for the protection, conservation, and management of Samoa’s archaeological and historic heritage.
The aim of the project is to compile a database of Samoa’s known and built heritage places and their associated histories and oral traditions (as applicable) with the purpose of documenting, conserving and preserving Samoa’s cultural heritage. This will be the first project of this type to be conducted in Samoa.
The project revisits the 1960s fieldwork of archaeologists Davidson and Green. It also aims to include GPS mapping, the creation of a GIS database of over 700 sites from across the country/archipelago, and the collection/preservation of oral histories.
The project directors are Professor Meleisea Leasiolagi Malama Meleisea and Associate Professor Penelope Schoeffel, with Dionne Fonoti as project manager. The project is drawing on the expertise of the Centre for Samoan Studies staff in the disciplines of Samoan culture and language, archaeology and anthropology as well as development studies.