A Footnote to History: Eight Years of Trouble in Samoa

A Footnote to History: Eight Years of Trouble in Samoa is an 1892 historical non-fiction work by Scottish-born author Robert Louis Stevenson describing the contemporary Samoan Civil War.[1]

A Footnote to History: Eight Years of Trouble in Samoa
A Footnote to History - Eight Years of Trouble in Samoa.jpg
AuthorRobert Louis Stevenson
LanguageEnglish
SubjectSamoan Civil War
PublisherCassell
Publication date
1892
Media typebook
Pages322
ISBN0-8248-1857-1
OCLC227258432

Robert Louis Stevenson arrived in Samoa in 1889 and built a house at Vailima. He quickly became passionately interested, and involved, in the attendant political machinations. These involved the three great powers battling for influence in Samoa – the United States, Germany and Britain – and the political machinations of the various Samoan factions within their indigenous political system. The book covers the period from 1882 to 1892.[2]

The book served as such a stinging protest against existing conditions that it resulted in the recall of two officials, and Stevenson for a time feared that it would result in his own deportation. When things had finally blown over he wrote to Sidney Colvin, who came from a family of distinguished colonial administrators, "I used to think meanly of the plumber; but how he shines beside the politician!"[3]

A contemporary review of the book noted:

For the many who take a personal interest in Mr. Stevenson's career the book will have an additional interest in the spectacle of a master of fiction struggling, on the whole successfully, with the trammels of fact.[4]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "R.L Stevenson on Samoa" (A contemporary book review.). The New York Times. August 14, 1892. Retrieved January 23, 2015.
  2. ^ "A Footnote to History: Eight Years of Trouble in Samoa, 1892". RLS website. Archived from the original on January 9, 2015. Retrieved January 23, 2015.
  3. ^ Letter to Sidney Colvin, April 17, 1893, Vailima Letters, Chapter XXVIII.
  4. ^ "Review of A Footnote to History: Eight Years of Trouble in Samoa by Robert Louis Stevenson". The Athenaeum (3385): 343–344. September 10, 1892.

External linksEdit