top of page
  • Writer's pictureAdmin

UH reprints Guam book on leprosy

From 1899 to 1941, the US Navy administration designated “Insular Patrolmen” to enforce Guam's sanitary and public health regulations. Photo courtesy of Guampedia

By Pacific Island Times News Staff

Woman author Anne Perez Hattori
Anne Perez Hattori

It was a different time in Guam. Between 1898 and 1941, CHamoru people afflicted with leprosy were banished from Guam and sent to a leprosarium in the Philippines.

Dr. Anne Hattori, professor of History, CHamoru Studies, and Micronesian Studies at the University of Guam, authored a book about this period when the U.S. naval administration controlled Guam.

The Navy’s health care regime in Guam at the time “was a vehicle through which U.S. colonial power and moral authority over CHamorus were introduced and entrenched,” remarked Dr. Hattori, a native CHamoru and author of the 264-page book “Colonial Dis-Ease: US Navy Health Policies and the Chamorros of Guam, 1898–1941.”

First published in 2004, the book got new traction when the University of Hawaii Press recently reprinted “Colonial Dis-Ease” in paperback. The first print was hardcover.

The book is available on UH For more information, contact: Dr. Anne Perez Hattori at

“The story of Guam's Hansen's Disease patients was not well published at the time I did my research, and it was an important topic to look at,” Hattori said.

“Medical experts, Navy doctors, and health care workers asserted their scientific knowledge as well as their administrative might and, in the process, became active participants in the colonization of Guam," she added.

Hattori said changes to Guam’s traditional systems of health and hygiene placed demands not only on CHamoru bodies, but also on their cultural values, social relationships, political controls and economic expectations.


bottom of page