Little is known with certainty about the history of the
ruins because of the lack of written references.
Nan Madol was an important political, social and religious
center built during the Saudeleur dynasty (between 1100 and 1400 AD).
It was a place for ritual activity and the homes of royalty
and their servants.
The Saudeleur dynasty ruled here until their overthrow in
1628 AD by Isohkelekel and his 333 companions, forefathers of today's
The city, now one of the most important archeological sites
in Micronesia, was abandoned sometime around the beginning of the 19th century.
No one is certain why the successors of Isohkelekel left the place.
The first westerners who arrived there in 1820 reported that it was a recent abandonment.