Skip to Main Content

Pitcairn Islands Study Center

News - March 16, 2007

Contact Study Center:

PHONE: 707-965-6244
TEXT:   707-229-1340

Contact Herb Ford:
PHONE: 559-592-0980 or

Live Online Chat


  [California Study Center]


PITCAIRN ISLANDS STUDY CENTER, Pacific Union College, Angwin, California USA.

Herbert Ford, 559-592-0980, 559-732-0313.


                        ANGWIN (Napa County) Calif., March 16, 2007—Jacob Ralph (Chippie) Warren, who was born on Pitcairn Island on June 4, 1920, and was known by all on the island for his dazzling smile and hard work, has died.

                        He was awarded the British Order of Empire medal in 1991 by Pitcairn's Governor David Moss in recognition of his outstanding service to the Pitcairn people.

                        Mr. Warrens death came on the last day of January 2007, as the result of a fall on Pitcairn's main road not far from the island home he shared with his wife, Mary Mavis Warren, whom he married on September 24, 1956; and his daughter, Meralda Warren.

                        Jacob's parents were Christopher Warren and Mary Emily Christian. He grew up on Pitcairn, and in the 1940s and 50s worked in New Zealand as a mattress maker and carpenter. He had to leave Pitcairn again in the 1970s as the result of an accident, and in the year he was away recuperating he again worked as a carpenter in Wellington, New Zealand. It was through his carpentry work that he became known to friends as Chippie.

                        Jacob survived a heart bypass operation in 1996, and then continued his vigorous life on Pitcairn. He helped build the islands first jetty, became the forester for Pitcairn in 1964 and led in reforestation of various parts of the island. He built and repaired a number of Pitcairns famed wooden longboats, and always carried his tools and material to mend the boats and build things on the island when the Pitcairners would voyage to Oeno Island for their annual holiday there.

                        In addition to his many other good works on Pitcairn, Jacob was a deacon for many years in the Pitcairn Island Seventh-day Adventist Church. His carpentry skills helped keep the church building in repair, and his love of nature found him tending the churchs flower garden with care.

                        Jacob was always a regular in showing up for Pitcairns required Public Work program, of which participation by all able-bodied men is required, this continuing up until last year when his old knees started not to hold him up, as one Pitcairner said.

                        Work was something Chippie was not afraid of, said his daughter. Dad was more of a giver than a receiver, and he earned great respect from young and old in this community. He will be sorely missed.