Birkeland, C., Craig, P., Fenner, D., Smith, L., Kiene, W. E., Riegel, B. M.
Geologic setting and ecological functioning of coral reefs in American Samoa
Riegel, B. M., Dodge, R. E.
Coral Reefs of the World. Volume 1: Coral Reefs of the USA
"American Samoa is rich in coral reefs and all islands are more or less fringed by coral reefs. Although structurally not part of the Samoan chain, political American Samoa includes Rose Atoll, a true atoll, and Swains Island. The coral reefs of American Samoa are integrated into a national protected areas system with the National Park of American Samoa (US Department of Interior) managing some coral reefs on the north coast of Tutuila near Vatia and along the shores of southern Ofu, and southeastern Tau, while the National Marine Sanctuary Program (US Department of Commerce) manages Fagatele Bay. Although debated among historians, many believe that the Samoan Islands were originally inhabited as early as 1000 bc. Thus, the division between American and independent Samoa is very recent and pre-Western history of both Samoan groups is inextricably linked. The Manua Islands (Ofu, Olosega, Tau ) of American Samoa have one of the oldest histories of Polynesia, and the Tuimanua title, formerly held by the highest chief of the Manua islands, is considered the oldest chiefly title. The titles name is obviously derived from the islands name and its prestige is because the Manua Islands were, at least according to Samoan oral tradition, the first islands settled in Polynesia. During the Tongan occupation of Samoa, Manua was the only island group that remained independent because of the familial relationship between the Tuimanua and the Tuitonga, who was descended from a former Tuimanua. The islands of Tutuila and Aunuu were culturally connected to Upolu Island in what is now independent Samoa. Still today, all the Samoan Islands are politically connected through the chieftain system and through family connections."