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Genealogy Concerns/Challenges

Genealogy Concerns/Challenges

Tasa (View posts)
Posted: 1155065706000
Classification: Query
Edited: 1155109740000
Hi all,

I am so excited to have found this board!
I recently caught the 'genealogy bug' and am currently working on my husband's family tree. I've gotten a lot of help from volunteers at the LDS family history center, but have ran into some challenges that seem to be unique or at least fairly common to Samoan families. I was hoping someone that has had experience researching family history with some of these situations could help me know where to begin. This is what I'm stuck on....
1. many family members have gone by a nickname, usually a name of a grandparent or other relative that is not actually their given name-- and others have gone by the name of their village, this has been going on for so many generations that living family members do not know the true names of ancestors
2. Similar to above, but with surnames, many people have taken on surnames from other family members for a variety of reasons-----most common is because they were raised by a grandparent or aunt/uncle and took their name, others took the name of a stepparent (not legally adopted though) and some took the name of a grandparent or aunt/uncle out of respect.

So, I guess my main questions are, how do you go about looking up family members when you don't know actual names? When someone was raised by a grandparent, aunt, uncle or other relative, how do you go about finding out who their biological parents are when they weren't legally adopted?

Also, here is the little bit we do know, if anyone has any other info that could help us, we'd be greatly appreciative.

Siafu Asa born to Vaitogi Auau and Tofu (not sure of maiden name, but later married a man with the last name Asa and took that name)
Vaitogi Auau is the son of Siafuafu Auau and Olepa Gaea

Omeka Leomiti Asa was born with the last name Masala (names of birth parents are unknown) and raised by her grandmother Leiu Leomiti.

Thanks in advance,

Tam :-)

Re: Genealogy Concerns/Challenges

Posted: 1155109384000
Classification: Query
Edited: 1155109784000

Which LDS FHC(Latter-Day Saints Family History Center) do you visit?

If on any of the islands, volunteers at a LDS FHC of your choice should be able to assist you in regards to Polynesian name history patterns.

If in the States, any volunteer at a LDS FHC of your choosing can assist and direct you to resources regarding Polynesian name history patterns.
Find a Family History Center near you...

"Omeka Leomiti Asa was born with the last name Masala (names of birth parents are unknown) and raised by her grandmother Leiu Leomiti."

--"...grandmother Leiu LEOMITI.". Is not LEOMITI one of the parents' name? the unknown mother's surname? And if LEOMITI is a married surname, do you know Leiu's maiden name?

I've searched for MASALA as a forename and surname -- IGI/Southwest Pacific (No Matches). Are you sure of the spelling?

Let us know of how you fare on your first journey of many in genealogy - <G>.

Manuia/Regards, Soifua,

Re: Genealogy Concerns/Challenges

tasa (View posts)
Posted: 1155154783000
Classification: Query
thanks for your comments....
I'm in California...and I only tried the family history center a couple of times and the volunteers there didn't seem to be very familiar with Polynesian family history. I'm thinking of going to one about a half an hour a way in an area where there's a Samoan ward...I'm thinking they'll be a little more familiar...and maybe I'll luck out and find a Pollynesean volunteer there :-)
As far as I know, Leomiti is Leiu's married name and I haven't been able to find out her maiden name, Leomiti is the maiden name of my mother in law's biological mother.
Masala might be Masaula or Mausala, but we're not sure. My mother in law is going to try to locate phone #s for her cousins in Hawaii who might know more.... I'll post more info if I find it!

thanks again!

tamie :-)

Re: Genealogy Concerns/Challenges

Christine Liava'a (View posts)
Posted: 1161114945000
Classification: Query
Do you have any approximate or exact dates, or villages? Did the family come from Samoa or American Samoa? Ancestry has the 1920 American Samoa census online. (It also has the 1910, but that is useless for Samoans, fine for Naval personnel).
If you have a village, try doing a search on it on Google. This may pick up entries from there on Familysearch. I'm not sure whether that will work,but it's worth trying.
When did the family come to America? What names are on their papers?

Re: Genealogy Concerns/Challenges

Posted: 1427269498000
Classification: Query
Edited: 1427269612000
Aloha, My name Is Joanne K Toluao,, my husbands last name is Toluao from Pavaiai..His mothers name is Ula Taatu (Toluao) is the married name ..she is from Fukiga Am. Samoa Leiu Leomiti is his grandmother from his moms side..Leomiti is her second marriage name. Taatu is her first marriage name They are from the Ulufale line in Fukiga...his sister Tala knows more about the family history then he does so if there is anything else you might wanna know just let us know and we will see if we could that is from his knowledge but I will double check with my sister in law lol..hope that helped a bit..Enjoy

Re: Genealogy Concerns/Challenges

Posted: 1427272591000
Classification: Query
grandmothers name was: Leiu Sani Leomiti born on April,17,1900 and passed away on February,1,1980 her Daughter is Ula Taatu from Leiu's first marriage...My husbands name is Taumafalofi Toluao...
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