Chris Taliutafa Young

Christopher Taliutafa Young, also known as Chris Young or Kilisi Young (December 20, 1892 – December 21, 1967) was the last claimant to the traditional title Tui Manu’a (paramount chief or king) of Manu’a, a group of islands in the eastern part of the Samoan Islands (present day American Samoa). He was deposed from this title and exiled by American Governor Edward Stanley Kellogg because the idea of monarchy was incompatible with the Constitution of the United States.[1]

. . . Chris Taliutafa Young . . .

Map of the Manu’a islands.

His parents were Arthur Paʻu Young and of Amipelia or Amepelia. His father’s heritage was half-Samoan and half-white; his grandfather was either a British or American surnamed Young and his grandmother was a Samoan woman of Fasito’o (located in the western Samoan Islands). On his mother’s side, Young was a descendant of Tui Manu’a Taliutafa Tupolo, son of Tui Manu’a Moaatoa, of the anoalo class, the lineal descendants of the Tui Manu’a line.[2][3][4] His elder sister Tui Manu’a Matelita ruled briefly from 1891 to 1895.[1]

The family resided in the main two villages of ‘o Lumā and Sī’ufaga, on Ta‘ū, the main island of the Manu’a group, where his father was a trader. The family lived in a two-story stone house in the center of the two villages near the Protestant Christian church.[5][1] The family also had connections and lived in the western Samoan Islands at Apia (capital of German Samoa).[1]

After the short reign of his sister Matelita, the title went to Tui Manuʻa Elisala (from another branch of the family). He ceded the islands to the United States with the Treaty of Cession of Manu’a on 16 July 1904 thus becoming a part of American Samoa. After Elisala’s death in 1909, it was noted that “the title effectively died – at least in the eyes of the American government – with him. But the status of the title was not forgotten and the desire for Samoa autonomy lived on.”[1]

. . . Chris Taliutafa Young . . .

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. . . Chris Taliutafa Young . . .

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