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View Poll Results: Have you personally seen one of these Samoa marked Bayonets?

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Pre WWI Dress Bayonet Stag Handle Samoa Colony Coat of Arms

Article about: Can anyone tell me the retail value of this imperial bayonet, I picked up this dress bayonet, it has a stag grip, the blade is 14 1/2 inch long and 19 1/2 overall length and on the thick edg

  1. #1

    Default Pre WWI Dress Bayonet Stag Handle Samoa Colony Coat of Arms

    Can anyone tell me the retail value of this imperial bayonet, I picked up this dress bayonet, it has a stag grip, the blade is 14 1/2 inch long and 19 1/2 overall length and on the thick edge of the blade is marked Fita Lita Ahia Samoa 1912, at the top metal near the release button is the word "Samoa" pic of Eagle and 3 Palm trees, which was the coat of arms the germans had for Samoa!! it also has a number 23 on it. During the Colonial period Germany had the colony of Samoa 1900-1920. The word Ahia refers to the German capital of the Samoa Colony. I understand that in Tom Johnsons Dagger book has some info on colonial daggers, could anyone post it or e-mail info on this obscure bayonet markings?
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  2. #2

    Default Re: Pre WWI Dress Bayonet Stag Handle Samoa Colony Coat of Arms

    Here is more info about the Samoa first german Leader Wilhelm Heinrich Solf

  3. #3

    Default Re: Pre WWI Dress Bayonet Stag Handle Samoa Colony Coat of Arms

    Looks like Kaiser Wilhelm II celebrated his birthday at Samoa!!!
    In West-Samoa wird der Geburtstag von Kaiser Wilhelm II. gefeiert
    Turns out the word Apia is the capital of Samoi
    During the Colonial period Germany had the colony of Samoa before and during WWI
    The Occupation of Samoa was the takeover and subsequent administration of the Pacific colony of German Samoa in August 1914 by an expeditionary force from New Zealand called the Samoa Expeditionary Force and New Zealand's first action in World War I. On 7 August 1914, the British government indicated that it would be a great and urgent Imperial service[1] if New Zealand forces seized the wireless station near Apia, one of several German radio stations used by the German East Asiatic Squadron. Since the days of Seddon, New Zealand had aspired to control Samoa, and in 1913 General Godley had discussed the seizure of German Samoa with British military authorities.

    The force landed at Apia on the 29 August. Although Germany refused to officially surrender the islands, no resistance was offered and the occupation took place without any fighting. However the first seizure of a German colony (Togoland in West Africa) was four days earlier, despite claims that German Samoa was the first enemy territory to fall to imperial forces [4]. The German cruisers the Scharnhorst and Gneisenau appeared off Apia on 14 September, but sailed away without exchanging shots with the 15-pounders and 6-pounders of D Battery on the beach.
    The authorities in Melbourne advised that Samoa had a German-officered constabulary of about 80 and a gunboat, which could have been augmented by seamen off merchant ships or warships.
    Governor Wilhelm Solf at Apia in 1910
    The colonial period officially began with the raising of the imperial flag on 1 March 1900. Wilhelm Solf became the first governor. In its political relations with the Samoan people, Solf’s government showed similar qualities of intelligence and care as in the economic arena.[7] He skillfully grafted Samoan institutions into the new system of colonial government by the acceptance of native customs.[8] However, when a dissident Samoan matai (chief) exceeded the limits of his considerable tolerance, Solf stepped in assertively, pronouncing that “... there was only one government in Samoa,” and it was him.[9] “German rule brought peace and order for the first time ... Authority, in the person of the governor, became paternal, fair, and absolute. Berlin was far away; there was no cable or radio.”[10] Energetic efforts by colonial administrators established the first public school system; a hospital was built and staffed and enlarged as needed, and Samoan women were trained as nurses. Of all colonial possessions of the European powers in the Pacific, German Samoa was by far the best-roaded;[11] all roads up until 1942 had been constructed under German direction. The imperial grants from the Berlin treasury which had marked the first eight years of German rule were no longer needed after 1908. Samoa had become a self-supporting colony.[12] Wilhelm Solf left Samoa in 1910 to be appointed Colonial Secretary at Berlin; he was succeeded as governor by Erich Schultz, the former chief justice in the protectorate.
    Germany ruled western Samoa for 14 years.
    The force occupied German Samoa until 1920. New Zealand then governed the islands from 1920 to independence in 1962 as a League of Nations Class C Mandate and after 1945 a United Nations Trust Territory.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Pre WWI Dress Bayonet Stag Handle Samoa Colony Coat of Arms

    Here is part of an e-mail from Chris, he has some good info
    The Fita Fita were only a very small unit about 30 at the largest. They were first formed under German command in 1888, curiously this was 11 years before it was officially a German colony, although there were German trading posts there since the 1850s. They were used for ceremonial purposes, parades, escorting the governor and firing an old gun from Apia harbour once a day. They never saw action as far as I know. Certainly German Samoa surrendered without a fight in WW1. As they were such a small unit I guess that's why they could afford to have such decorative bayonets.
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  5. #5

    Default Re: Pre WWI Dress Bayonet Stag Handle Samoa Colony Coat of Arms

    Here is a great site on Imperial German Colonies!!
    German Colonial Uniforms - Bayonets of the Imperial German Colonial and Overseas Forces
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  6. #6

    Default Re: Pre WWI Dress Bayonet Stag Handle Samoa Colony Coat of Arms

    From Wilkipedia
    The German ships fared much worse. The SMS Olga came off best, thrown high onto the beach where she was wrecked but many of her crew survived, escaping onto higher ground. The SMS Adler and SMS Eber were less fortunate, because they were caught at the harbour mouth by the initial blow and were bodily picked up and smashed together before sinking in deep water. 96 men from their crews drowned in the storm, and both ships were totally destroyed. All six of the merchant ships remaining in the harbour were wrecked, and the death toll was well over 200 sailors from several nationalities.
    German Gunboat Adler. Overturned on the reef, on the western side of Apia Harbor, Upolu, Samoa, soon after the storm. Note her battered hull, well for hoisting propeller, rescue bouy mounted on her stern, and decorative windows painted on her quarters.
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  7. #7

    Default Re: Pre WWI Dress Bayonet Stag Handle Samoa Colony Coat of Arms

    The 1889 Apia cyclone was a Pacific tropical cyclone, which swept across Apia, Samoa on March 15, 1889. The effect on shipping in the harbour was devastating, largely because of what has been described as 'an error of judgement that will forever remain a paradox in human psychology'
    Apia is an exposed harbour, unprotected by high ground or an enclosing reef. The northern part of the harbour is open to the Pacific, and thus wind and waves can sweep through the area and drive any shipping which remained in the bay onto the reefs at the Southern end, or toss them right up the beach. However, even though the officers of the various navies were well aware of the necessary procedures in the face of such a threat, none made a move. This has been attributed to jingoism or national pride; none of the men in the harbour were willing to admit in front of the other nations' navies, that they were afraid of the elements, and so refused to take precautions, and refused to allow the merchant ships which accompanied them to move either, leaving thirteen ships, some larger vessels, at anchor close to one another in Apia harbour.
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  8. #8

    Default Re: Pre WWI Dress Bayonet Stag Handle Samoa Colony Coat of Arms

    Thanks Chris!!
    Another photo of Fita fita troops.

  9. #9

    Default Re: Pre WWI Dress Bayonet Stag Handle Samoa Colony Coat of Arms

    Here is some more great pics from Chris!!
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  10. #10

    Default Re: Pre WWI Dress Bayonet Stag Handle Samoa Colony Coat of Arms

    Tiger27,
    a thoroughly enjoyable post !....... of a little known outpost of the Imperial German Empire, usually casually mentioned in a sentence in history books.....i have learned something new, for which i salute you ! The bayonet is, i should imagine very scarce, i have not seen one marked in such away and i have been collecting since the early 70's. I would be more than happy to have in my collection!....As for a valuation, i would say around $600+

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