18 Mar 2013

Samoa mound discovery puzzles archeologists

4:11 pm on 18 March 2013

A student archeologist volunteering in Samoa wants locals to see the importance of studying ancient items unearthed in a mound that date back to 1100 A.D.

More stone adzes, fragments of pottery and other items found at the Pulemelei mound in the Palauli district on Savaii are now on display at the Museum of Samoa.

Michael Hannikainen says archeologists are still puzzled as to who built the mound and why.

But he says there is still opposition from conservative landowners who don't want old culture and traditions disturbed with further studies.

"But we are kind of trying to work it out with them and trying to convince people here that discovering their own past is going to be important in the future."

Michael Hannikainen says the mound is believed to be the largest and most ancient in Polynesia, measuring 65 by 60 metres at its base and stands 12 metres high.