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    Alexander Salmon

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    1855 – 1914

    Easter Island is known for its giant stone heads, and, ummm...

    Well, here's one thing you don't associate with Easter Island: Jews. Its remoteness, thousands of miles from mainland, plays a role. Plus the name gives us the heebie jeebies.

    And yet, a Jewish man governed Easter Island for a good decade in the 19th century. Go figure.

    It all starts with a Jewish English merchant Alexander Salmon (Solomon), who settled in Polynesia and married a princess. They had 10 children, one of whom became Queen Marau of Tahiti (make sure to read her profile). Another one was Alexander Ariipaea Vehiaitipare Salmon Jr. (now there is a collection of middle names for the ages), who inherited his father's business ventures.

    Salmon Jr. eventually made his way to Easter Island. Initially, he ran a sheep farm. He then graduated from animals to people and became the island's de facto ruler. In 1888, Chile took over, so Salmon sold off his holdings and moved to San Francisco. There, he was involved in a scheme to marry a Hawaiian queen... Clearly, royalty was in the blood.

    Perhaps his story will give you something else to associate with Easter Island?

    Verdict: Borderline Jew.

    August 8, 2014

    See Also

    David Abrabanel

    Easter Bunny

    Queen Marau

    Laisenia Qarase

    Elias Abraham Rosenberg
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