History

Tongans on the move arrived in these parts 1000 years ago, before the Dutch bumped into Futuna in 1616. The British collided with Wallis in 1767, naming the islands after British explorer Samuel Wallis. But in 1837 it was French missionaries who settled here more permanently, France then declaring these islands a protectorate in 1842. A more official French takeover of the islands' three separate aristocratic monarchies – which are still in place – followed in 1888, when the islands were placed under the ministrations of New Caledonia. In 1961 Wallis & Futuna became a French Overseas Territory, ending the islands' deference to New Caledonia. The nomenclature shifted again in 2003 when Wallis & Futuna became a French Overseas Collectivity.