To Walk Under Palm Trees

The Germans in Samoa: Snapshots from Albums


The Germans in Samoa 19

A willingness to accept responsibility and a strong loyalty to the country of his birth saw Rudolf Berking take a leading role in advancing German interests in Samoa and attending to the welfare of Samoa’s remaining German citizens and their families. The number of Germans in Samoa had shrunk by about three-quarters after the post-war repatriations to Germany in 1919, and the forced deportation of nearly 200 Germans (including children) by the NZ administration in Samoa in June 1920.

This photo shows Berking as the leading pallbearer at a major turn-out of Germans and other citizens at Magiagi Cemetery, in Apia, in August 1933 at the burial of Mr Ernst Friedrich Reye, long-time Apia resident and former personal assistant to German Governors Solf and Schultz. Others in the photo (left-to-right) are Mr Robert Wetzell, Mr Augustus Betham (dark jacket), Mr Friedrich ‘Fritz’ Stunzner, Mr John Netzler and in the white suit Mr Raimund Reye.

Credit: Reye Family Collection

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