A dedicated group of DXers who believe in the DXCC looked at the maps of the world to determine WHERE and HOW to start a "NEW DXCC COUNTRY".The Radio Amateurs of American Samoa were eager to represent themselves in the IARU as their immediate neighbors in Samoa (formerly British Samoa) do. So we thought Swains could be a new DXCC Entity under DXCC2000.When the DXCC Rules removed the IARU category, we decided to go to Swains Island anyway.A team of dedicated DXers from France, Japan and the USA planned and executed this expedition to Swains Island KH8SI.Our team gathered in Honolulu, HI, to check equipment and headed south on Hawaiian Airlines to Pago Pago, American Samoa. Hawaiian Airlines was very supportive of our expedition. Using equipment owned by the team members and Larry Gandy AH8LG (President of the American Samoa ARC) and loans from STEPPIR, gathered at the home of Larry and Uti Gandy and verified that the equipment worked.We then met with the Family which has owned Swains Island since its discovery and the Government of Am Samoa. The final details of our expedition were planned. Our original plan was to charter a large inter-island ferry, but Typhoon OLAF caused a great deal of damage in Am Samoa which preoccupied our planned transportation. We then found the TASMAN EXPLORER, a Tuna Boat, and arranged somewhat less comfortable transportation. TYPHOON PERCY then scored a direct hit on SWAINS ISLAND which added a RELIEF EFFORT to our DXPEDITION. We carried Water, Food, Clothing, Gasoline and other supplies to the residents in addition to our DXpedition equipment.Amateur Radio received a great deal of favorable publicity and many hours of live TV coverage because of our effort.Swains Island is far enough from the closest point on Tutuila, the nearest island in Am Samoa to count under the DXCC rules formerly in effect.Because the TYPHOONS were still nearby the trip to SWAINS was ROUGH! Rolling up to 45 degrees and pitching in the swells. The only transportation between the TASMAN EXPLORER and Swains is by small boat and again the high surf delayed our SHIP TO SHORE movement.We finally managed to get all the people and equipment to the shore, through the surf, and up the steep coral beach. We set up the CW Tent, then the SSB Tent, the generators and all equipment, and assembled YAGI for both CW and SSB, and STEPPIR Vertical and Inv-Vee for the low bands. We had two dedicated positions in both the CW and SSB tents when bands were open, we ran on two bands per mode.The openings were fairly short and we tried to concentrate on EUROPE where the need was greatest but didn't slight any continent or area. The QSO rate was high during the openings.Swains has been owned by the same family and became a territory of the USA during the Coolidge Administration. The island had a major coconut plantation until demand for COPRA declined leaving no source of income on the island. Members of the family still live on Swains and find fish, lobster, crab, coconut crab, and coconuts on the island. Other supplies must be brought from Am Samoa by boat.These few photographs give you a feeling for the DXpedition, the geography of Swains Island with the former Coconut plantation, nearly fresh water lagoon, and coral beach. The damage from Typhoon Percy is seen since some homes were destroyed and all that debris and the rocks were blown into the living area from the beach.If the DXCC rules are wisely revised by the ARRL so Swains Island counts "WE'LL BE BACK"!About Swains AtollSwains Island is an atoll in the Tokelau chain. Culturally a part of Tokelau, it is administered by the United States as part of American Samoa. Swains Island is also known as Olosenga Island or Olohega Island. Owned by the Jennings family and used as a copra plantation, Swains Island has a population of 17 Tokelauans, who harvest the island's coconuts. The land area is 1.5 km2.Swains Island has also been known at various times as Olosenga Island, Olohega Island, Quiros Island, Gente Hermosa Island, and Jennings Island.Swains Island has a total area of 460.9 acres (186.5 ha), of which 373 acres (150.8 ha) is land. The central lagoon accounts for 88 acres (35.8 ha). There is a small islet of 914 square yards (764 m2) in the eastern part of the lagoon.The atoll is somewhat unusual, featuring an unbroken circle of land enclosing a formerly freshwater lagoon cut off from the sea. Recent U.S. Coast Guard visitors to Swains described its lagoon as "brackish" and a source for the plentiful numbers of mosquitoes which plague the island. In April 2007, a member of an amateur radio expedition confirmed that the lagoon water was fit only for bathing and washing, and that fresh water seemed to be in rather short supply on the island at the time. According to a United States Department of the Interior description of Swains Island, drinking water on Swains is derived entirely from rainfall collected in two large mahogany tanks near the island's copra shed.Road on Swains IslandAs of 2005, the population of Swains Island was 37, all located in the village of Taulaga on the island's west side. According to the Interior Department report, Taulaga prior to 2005 consisted of a grassy malae (an open space similar to an American "village green"), twenty or so fale (Tokelauan-style houses), and a large red copra shed that doubled as the town hall and water-collection system.[A communications building, school, and church rounded out Taulaga's buildings. Only the church remained standing after Cyclone Percy in 2005, though other structures have since been rebuilt.The village of Etena in the southeast, once home to the expansive "residency" of Swains' unique dynasty of "proprietors", is now abandoned. This "residency", as it was called, consisted of a rustic four-bedroom house built in the 1800s to accommodate the Jennings family, owners of the island. A visitor to Swains Island in the 1920s described the mansion as being "dilapidated, though stately", noting that parts of it were not being used even at that time. A road, the Old Belt Road, once ran around the island rim, but it seems to have been reduced in recent years to an overgrown jungle trail.Swains Islanders mainly speak Tokelauan, although English is the principal administrative language of American Samoa.History of Swains AtollPedro Fernandes de Queirós, a Portuguese navigator sailing for Spain, is believed to have been the first European explorer to have visited Swains Island, arriving on 2 March 1606. He named it Isla de la Gente Hermosa, which means "island of the beautiful people" in Spanish.Later, there was an expedition from Fakaofo to the island. The male inhabitants of the island either fled or were killed by the invaders, while the women were taken back to Fakaofo. The subsequent infertility of the island, attributed to a curse placed on it by its last chief, led to the failure of the Fakaofoan settlement thereCaptain William L. Hudson of the American ship Peacock visited the atoll in 1841, at the request of Commodore Charles Wilkes, but was unable to land due to stormy weather. Finding the island was not at the position reported by de Queirós, Hudson concluded that the whaling captain William Chown Swain of the bark George Champlain that sailed from Newport, Rhode Island, who had alerted them to the island and given him the correct co-ordinates of 11 degrees south and 170 degrees west, had discovered it, and Hudson renamed it "Swains Island".The Jennings familyGroup of young people and children from Swains Island, late 1886. Photographed by Thomas Andrew.Fakaofoans returned to the island soon after Hudson's visit, and were joined by three Frenchmen, who then left to sell the coconut oil they had accumulated. In 1856, an American, Eli Hutchinson Jennings (14 November 1814 – 4 December 1878), joined a community on Swains with his Samoan wife, Malia. Jennings claimed to have received title to the atoll from a British Captain Turnbull, who claimed ownership of the island by discovery and named it after himself. According to one account, the sale price for Swains was fifteen shillings per acre (37 shillings per hectare), and a bottle of gin. One of the Frenchmen later returned, but did not care to share the island with Jennings and left.On 13 October 1856, Swains became a semi-independent proprietary settlement of the Jennings family (although under the U.S. flag), a status it would retain for approximately seventy years. It was also claimed for the U.S. by the United States Guano Company in 1860, under the Guano Islands Act.Jennings established a coconut plantation, which flourished under his son, Eli, Junior. Eli Jennings, Senior was also instrumental in helping Peruvian "blackbird" slave ships to depopulate the other three Tokelau atolls—see H.E. Maude's Slavers in Paradise (A.N.U., Canberra, 1981).American sovereignty confirmedIn 1907, the Resident Commissioner of the British Gilbert and Ellice Islands (then a British protectorate; since 1979 the sovereign nations of Kiribati and Tuvalu) claimed that Swains belonged to the United Kingdom, demanding payment of a tax of US$85. Jennings paid, but he brought the matter before the U.S. State Department, and his money was ultimately refunded. The British government furthermore conceded that Swains was an American possession.Swains Island BeachThe ownership of the island came into question after Eli Jr.'s death in 1920 and that of his wife in 1921. The United States decided to give the right of administration jointly to Eli's daughter Ann and son Alexander, while making it officially part of American Samoa by annexation on 4 March 1925. Alexander Jennings, the son of Eli Jennings, Jr., became managing owner of the island. The population at this time was around 100. During the Pacific War, the island had a population of 125, and had a naval radio station.In 1953, labor troubles arose on Swains when Tokelauan-hired workers decided to claim "squatters' rights" to the atoll, by virtue of having lived on it year-round. After Alexander Jennings evicted 56 workers and their families from the island, the governor of American Samoa intervened. By executive order, the governor acknowledged Jennings' proprietary rights to Swains Island, while instituting a system of labor contracts and a local governmental structure to protect the rights of his employees. The islanders were also guaranteed a representative in the territorial legislature.Recent sovereignty and trade issuesSwains Island lies between the Samoan islands and Tokelau (upper center)On 25 March 1981, New Zealand, of which Tokelau is a dependency, confirmed U.S. sovereignty over Swains Island in the Treaty of Tokehega, under which the United States surrendered its territorial claims to the other islands of Tokelau. In the draft constitution that was the subject of the Tokelau self-determination referendum, 2006, however, Swains Island is claimed as part of Tokelau. As of March 2007, American Samoa has not yet taken an official position, but the Governor of American Samoa Togiola Tulafono has said he believes that his government should do everything it can to retain control of the island.In 2007 Tokelau's regional parliament, the General Fono, considered the adoption of a new flag for their nation which showed a map depicting Swains Island, as a fourth star in addition to three others, at a proportional distance to that of the others. Ultimately a compromise was adopted whereby the four stars were retained, but with the arrangement and proportionality suggestive of the Southern Cross.During a recent[timeframe?] visit to Tokelau, Alexander Jennings, representative of Swains Island to the American Samoa legislature, indicated a desire for better trade links between Swains and its neighbor. The head of government of Tokelau, Kuresa Nasau, was reported[by whom?] to be "interested," and further talks were anticipated.Cyclone Percy 2005In February 2005, Cyclone Percy struck the island, causing widespread damage and virtually destroying the village of Taulaga, as well as the old Jennings estate at Etena. Only seven people were on the island at the time. Coast Guard airdrops ensured that the islanders were not left without food, water and other necessities. A United States Coast Guard visit in March 2007 listed 12 to 15 inhabitants, and showed that the island's trees had largely survived Percy's wrath.Power and radio issuesDue to its remoteness, Swains Island is considered a separate amateur radio "entity" and several visits have been made by ham operators. The 2007 amateur radio "DXpedition", with call sign N8S, made more than 117,000 contacts worldwide. This set a new world record for an expedition using generator power and tents for living accommodations, since broken by the 2012 DXpedition to Malpelo Island.In 2012, Swains Island hosted the DXpedition NH8S; this group arrived on September 5, 2012 and departed on September 19, 2012. A total of 105,455 radio contacts were made.The Jennings dynastyStyling themselves "leaders", or "proprietors", members of the Jennings family ruled Swains Island virtually independent of any outside authority from 1856 to 1925. After 1925, while retaining proprietary ownership of the island, they were subject to the jurisdiction of the U.S. territory of American Samoa.Jennings who ruled as semi-independent "proprietors":13 October 1856 – 4 December 1878: Eli Hutchinson Jennings, Sr. (1814–1878)4 December 1878 – 25 October 1891: Malia Jennings, his Samoan widow (d. 1891)25 October 1891 – 24 October 1920: Eli Hutchinson Jennings, Jr., (1863–1920) son of Eli, Sr. and Malia (1863–1920) Referred to by Robert Louis Stevenson as "King Jennings" during a visit to the island.24 October 1920 – August 1921: Ann Eliza Jennings Carruthers (1897–1921) Jointly with sibling, Alexander Hutchinson Jennings; both children of Eli Jr.24 October 1920 – 4 March 1925: Alexander Hutchinson JenningsJennings who ruled under direct American jurisdiction:4 March 1925 – Unknown date in 1940s: Alexander Hutchinson JenningsUnknown Dates between 1940–1954: Alexander E. Jennings1954 to Present: Local government instituted by American Samoa. However, the island is still owned by the Jennings extended family.A man should keep his friendship in constand repair (Samuel Johnson (1755).
REMARKSBecause of rights Youtube switched off the music from the video.