Pacific Island Guide to Family History Research

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Introduction[edit | edit source]

Because Pacific Island family history is based largely on an oral tradition, it is important to apply indigenous methodologies to respectfully perform genealogy work. The methodology presented here is based on the successful genealogical experiences of other Pacific Islanders. Those who have shared their experiences are listed below in the Bibliography.

How to Use This Guide[edit | edit source]

It is important to note the steps listed below are generalizations for getting started on the basics on Pacific Island research. Pages are currently being made to explain the cultural differences that are essential to understand when doing genealogy work in each Pacific nation and culture.

Below the "Tips" section is a list of a major island groups, their nations, and links to research guides.

Pre-Research Research Tips[edit | edit source]

Before beginning research, it is important to understand a few things. Family history work is much more than just finding names of ancestors. It involves these aspects that are significant in any kind of historical research:

  1. History
  2. Culture
  3. Language
  4. Land
  5. Law & Religion

Tips to Begin Genealogy Work[edit | edit source]

Table of Pacific Island Names

Table of Pacific Island Research Guides[edit | edit source]

Polynesia[edit | edit source]

American Samoa

Cook Islands (Includes Rarotonga)

Easter Island (Rapa Nui)

French Polynesia


New Zealand


Norfolk Island

Pitcairn Islands





Tuvalu Genealogy

Wallis and Futuna Islands

Melanesia[edit | edit source]


New Caledonia

Papua New Guinea

Solomon Islands


Micronesia[edit | edit source]

Federated States of Micronesia (FSM)

Guam and the Northern Mariana Islands

Kiribati (Gilbert Islands)

Marshall Islands



Pacific Island Guide Bibliography[edit | edit source]