Friday, November 30, 2012

Queen For A Day

The aliʻi attained high social rank in several ways: by heredity, by appointment to political office, by marriage or by right of conquest. The first was determined at birth, the others by the outcomes of war and political processes.

King Kamehameha I conquered most of the islands by late-1795 and negotiated a peaceful unification of the islands under single rule in 1810.  Before this, the Hawaiian Islands were ruled by a network of independent island kings (High Chiefs called Aliʻi Nui) through most of its history.

Queen Kaʻahumanu was Kamehameha’s favorite wife; but her role in leadership became more than that.  She was, at one time, arguably, the most powerful figure in the Hawaiian Islands, helping usher in a new era for the Hawaiian kingdom.

When Kamehameha died on May 8, 1819, the leadership was passed to his son, Liholiho, who would rule as Kamehameha II.  At that time, Kaʻahumanu created the office of Kuhina Nui and would rule as an equal with Liholiho.

Ka‘ahumanu assumed control of the business of government, including authority over land matters, the single most important issue for the Hawaiian nation for many generations to come.

The Kuhina Nui was a unique position in the administration of Hawaiian government and had no specific equivalent in western governments of the day. It has been described in general terms as "Prime Minister," "Premier" and "Regent."

The Kuhina Nui held equal authority to the king in all matters of government, including the distribution of land, negotiating treaties and other agreements, and dispensing justice.

Kamehameha III established Hawai‘i’s first constitution in 1840, where the office of Kuhina Nui was first codified.  The Kuhina Nui's primary judicial responsibility over "life and death, condemnation and acquittal" became institutionalized in that constitution (1840.)  The Kuhina Nui was also given the duty of presiding, with the King, over the Supreme Court.

Article 45 of the 1852 Constitution of Hawaiian Kingdom stated: “Art. 45. All important business of the kingdom which the King chooses to transact in person, he may do, but not without the approbation of the Kuhina Nui. The King and Kuhina Nui shall have a negative on each other’s public acts.”

The Constitution of 1852 further clarified some of the office’s responsibilities, including its authority in the event of the King’s death or minority of the heir to the throne.  The office of Kuhina Nui functioned from 1819 to 1864, through the reigns of Kamehameha II, III, IV and V.

Kaʻahumanu was such a powerful person and Kuhina Nui that subsequent female Kuhina Nui adopted her name, Kīna‘u (Kaʻahumanu II) (1832-1839,) Kekāuluohi (Kaʻahumanu III) (1839-1845) and Victoria Kamāmalu (Kaʻahumanu IV) (1855-1863.)  (Keoni Ana (1845-1855) and Mataio Kekūanāo‘a (1863-1864) were the male Kuhina Nui.)

The Constitution (1852 – Article 47) further stated that the Kuhina Nui (Premier), in absence of a Monarch, would fill the vacant office.  "Whenever the throne shall become vacant by reason of the King’s death, or otherwise, and during the minority of any heir to the throne, the Kuhina Nui, for the time being, shall, during such vacancy or minority, perform all the duties incumbent on the King, and shall have and exercise all the powers, which by this Constitution are vested in the King."

This situation occurred once, when Kuhina Nui Victoria Kamāmalu (Kaʻahumanu IV) assumed the powers of the monarchy - and, was conceptually “Queen” for a day – the first sole-ruling female of the Kingdom of Hawaiʻi.   Here’s how it happened.

On April 6, 1853, Alexander Liholiho was named successor to the office of the Constitutional Monarch by King Kamehameha III, in accordance with Article 25 of the Constitution of 1852. Article 25 provided that the "...successor (of the Throne) shall be the person whom the King and the House of Nobles shall appoint and publicly proclaim as such, during the King's life..."

Alexander Liholiho succeeded Kamehameha III on December 15, 1854 (at the death of Kamehameha III) and served as Kamehameha IV.

Victoria Kamāmalu became Kuhina Nui in 1855 by appointment by her brother, Alexander Liholiho (Kamehameha IV.)  Kamehameha IV ruled for nine years; he died unexpectedly on November 30, 1863, without naming a successor.

Following the provisions of the Constitution, on November 30, 1863, Kuhina Nui Victoria Kamāmalu became the first female Head of State in Hawaiʻi (149-years ago, today.)

After consulting with the Privy Councilors, Kuhina Nui Victoria Kamāmalu proclaimed in front the Legislature:
“It having pleased Almighty God to close the earthly career of King Kamehameha IV, at a quarter past 9 o'clock this morning, I, as Kuhina Nui, by and with the advice of the Privy Council of State hereby proclaim Prince Lot Kamehameha, King of the Hawaiian Islands, under the style and title of Kamehameha V. God preserve the King!”

Kamehameha V had not named a successor to the throne before he died on December 11, 1872. Lunalilo, heir apparent to the throne, wanted his people to choose their next ruler in a democratic manner and requested a vote be held on New Year’s Day following the death of Kamehameha V.

He therefore noted, “Whereas, it is desirable that the wishes of the Hawaiian people be consulted as to a successor to the Throne, therefore, notwithstanding that according to the law of inheritance, I am the rightful heir to the Throne, in order to preserve peace, harmony and good order, I desire to submit the decision of my claim to the voice of the people.” (Lunalilo, December 16, 1872)

Prince David Kalākaua and others not in the Kamehameha lineage, chose to run against Prince Lunalilo.  The people on every island unanimously chose William Charles Lunalilo as King. (lunalilo-org)

At noon on January 8, 1873, the Legislature met, as required by law, in the Courthouse to cast their ballots of election of the next King.  Lunalilo won – the first elected King of Hawaiʻi (officially elected by the Legislative Assembly.)

The image shows Kuhina Nui Victoria Kamāmalu.  In addition, I have added other images of folks related to this in a folder of like name in the Photos section on my Facebook and Google+ pages.

© 2012 Hoʻokuleana LLC

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Royal Hawaiian Hotel (the first one)

It started out as the Hawaiian Hotel, but the name was changed to Royal Hawaiian Hotel.

This first "Royal Hawaiian Hotel" was not in Waikīkī.  It was in downtown Honolulu where the "One Capitol Place" building now stands (present home to the Hawai‘i State Art Museum and state offices.)

In 1872, King Kamehameha V (Lot Kapuāiwa) arranged to designate the first "Royal Hawaiian Hotel" at the corner of Richards and Hotel Street. He added the "Royal" to the name to give it a regal feel.

During his reign (1863 to 1872,) foreign travel to the islands continued to grow. One of those travelers, Mark Twain, came to Hawaii in March 1866 and stayed for four months writing letters back to the Sacramento Union describing his experience. He described the King as follows:
"He was a wise sovereign; he had seen something of the world; he was educated & accomplished, & he tried hard to do well by his people, & succeeded. There was no trivial royal nonsense about him; He dressed plainly, poked about Honolulu, night or day, on his old horse, unattended; he was popular, greatly respected, and even beloved."

Queen Victoria sent her second son Alfred, Duke of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha on a state visit in 1869.  The arrival and departure of Twain, the Duke of Edinburgh and others included envoys, politicians, merchants and opportunists, illustrated the need for good hotel accommodations.

The Hawaiian Hotel was proposed in 1865 but not under construction until 1871.  The Hotel is located on the corner of Hotel Street and Richards Street.

A law was passed by the Legislative Assembly in 1872 (Laws of His Majesty Kamehameha V, King of the Hawaiian Islands) that funded and authorized the acquisition of the hotel by the Hawaiian government:
 “WHEREAS a Public Hotel has been erected at Honolulu, known at present as the Hawaiian Hotel: And whereas the said Hotel has been erected solely for the public benefit and not for the profit of the projectors; And whereas it appears proper, just and advisable that the construction of the said Hotel shall be assumed as a public enterprise, and the ground purchased for the purpose, as well as the buildings thereon situated, should be public property”.

“Upon the issuing of the Bonds as in the preceding Section provided, the Minister of the Interior is hereby directed to purchase for the said sum of One Hundred and Sixteen Thousand Dollars, the real and personal property now pertaining and constituting the Hawaiian Hotel, and to receive good and sufficient Conveyances and Bills of Sale for the same, conveying and transferring the said property to the Hawaiian Government.”

The Royal Hawaiian Hotel was formally opened with a subscription ball on February 29, 1872, in all its splendor and befitting any visiting dignitary.

Advertisement in ‘The Friend’ – January 1, 1888:
“THE ROYAL HAWAIIAN HOTEL is one of the leading architectural structures of Honolulu. The grounds upon which it stands comprise an entire square of about four acres, fronting on Hotel Street. This large area affords ample room for a lawn and beautiful walks, which are laid out most artistically with flowering plants and tropical trees. There are twelve pretty cottages within this charming enclosure, all under the Hotel management. The Hotel and cottages afford accommodations for 200 guests. The basement of the Hotel contains the finest billiard hall in the city, also a first-class bar, well stocked with fine mines and liquors.

The main entrance is on the second floor, to the right of which are the elegantly furnished parlors. A broad passage-way leads from the main hall to the dining-room. These apartments open on to broad verandas, where a magnificent view of the Nu‘uanu Mountains may be seen through the wealth of tropical foliage that surrounds the balconies.

The fare dispensed is the best the market affords, and is first-class in all respects.

Hotel and cottages are supplied with pure water from an artesian well on the premises. The Clerk's office is furnished with the Telephone, by which communication is had with the leading business firms of the city.

 And Money Lavishly Expended under the Present able Management
“The Model Family Hotel”

By the 1900s, the Royal Hawaiian Hotel lost its guests to the newer Alexander Young Hotel, a couple blocks away; in 1917 the Royal Hawaiian Hotel was converted to a YMCA building.

The building was demolished in 1926 and a new YMCA in a similar style was built in its place.  During World War I, it was converted into the present Armed Forces YMCA.

The Hawaiian Hotel was not the only ambitious building project that Kamehameha V had initiated. The cornerstone of the Aliʻiōlani Hale was laid in 1872 and the building completed in 1874. Currently, it is the home of the Hawaiʻi State Supreme Court and the statue of Kamehameha the Great.

The image shows the Royal Hawaiian Hotel in downtown Honolulu.  In addition, I have added other images/maps of the property in a folder of like name in the Photos section on my Facebook page.

© 2012 Hoʻokuleana LLC

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Kuihelani – Waikīkī Home of Kamehameha I

Helumoa (meaning “chicken scratch”) was the name bestowed on that niu (coconut) planting that would multiply into a grove of reportedly 10,000 coconut trees.

This is the same coconut grove that would later be called the King’s Grove, or the Royal Grove, and would be cited in numerous historical accounts for its pleasantness and lush surroundings.

Kamehameha the Great and his warriors camped near here, when they began their conquest of O‘ahu in 1795.  Later, he would return and build a Western style stone house for himself, as well as residences for his wives and retainers in an area known as Pua‘ali‘ili‘i (little pig.)

Kamehameha's kauhale (residence) was called Kuihelani and was situated at the area between the mouth of the ʻApuakehau (Moana Hotel) and Helumoa (Royal Hawaiian Hotel), a favorite dwelling site of Waikīkī’s chiefs.

It was probably adjacent to the old foot-trail that ran from Pūowaina (Punchbowl) to Waikīkī. John Papa ʻĪʻī described this main road into Waikīkī as follows:
“The trail from Kawaiahao which led to lower Waikiki went along Kaananiau, into the coconut grove at Pawaa, the coconut grove of Kuakuaka, then down to Piinaio; along the upper side of Kahanaumaikai's coconut grove, along the border of Kaihikapu pond, into Kawehewehe; then through the center of Helumoa of Puaaliilii, down to the mouth of the Apuakehau stream; along the sandy beach of Ulukou to Kapuni, where the surfs roll in; thence to the stream of Kuekaunahi; to Waiaula and to Pali'iki, Kamanawa's house site.”

Before the battle of Nuʻuanu, Kamehameha had promised the moʻo goddess Kihawahine a special kind of dwelling. According to Kamakau, Kamehameha had spoken to the goddess, saying, "If you take Oʻahu, I will build a house for your akua in the calm of Waikiki-a puaniu house ..." The hale puaniu was a small structure in which offerings of bananas, coconuts, 'awa (kava) and capes were kept to use in order to deify a deceased person and make him or her into a mo'o god or goddess. (Kanahele)

Triumphant upon his return, instead of the typical hale pili (grass hut,) Kamehameha built a stone house, enclosed by a fence.  Nearby were the dwellings of Kaʻahumanu and Keōpuōlani and their retainers.

He may have built or commandeered additional houses to accommodate some of his other wives and children, along with their attendants, probably numbering several hundred. It was typical of Kamehameha to surround himself with a large entourage for whom he provided generously.

George W. Bates described Kuihelani and Waikīkī in 1854:  “The old stone house in which the great warrior (Kamehameha I) once lived still stands, but it is falling into a rapid decay.  I could not help lingering there for a time to notice the objects scattered around."

“There were no busy artisans wielding their implements of labor; no civilized vehicles bearing their loads of commerce, or any living occupant.  But beneath the cool shade of some evergreens, or in some thatched houses, reposed several canoes."

“Every thing was quiet as though it were the only village on earth, and its tenants the only denizens. A few natives were enjoying a promiscuous bath in a crystal stream that came directly from the mountains (ʻApuakehau) and rolled, like another Pactolus, to meet the embrace of the ocean."

“Some were steering their frail canoes seaward. Others, clad simply in Nature's robes, were wading out on the reefs in search of fish.  Here in this quiet hamlet, once unknown to all the world, Kamehameha I, surrounded by his chieftains, held his councils for the safety and consolidation of his kingdom.”

Waikīkī was well-suited for Kamehameha’s shallow-draft canoes that did not require deep water and could be easily beached. Its waters also provided the best anchorage for foreign ships, which were now calling on the islands in increasing numbers.

Captain Vancouver, a friend and counselor to Kamehameha, said of Waikīkī: "although open above half the compass in the southern quarters, it is unquestionably the most eligible anchoring place in the island."

Its advantages were sandy bottom, soft coral, irregular reef and mild surf. Nonetheless, while foreign ships did anchor at Waikīkī, it was not the perfect harbor.

In contrast, Honolulu was a noisy, dusty port town of 14,000 inhabitants, including hundreds of foreign residents and visitors.

Waikīkī was quiet compared to the bustle of Honolulu's yelping dogs, rattling carts, saluting cannon and carousing drunks. Over 600 ships a year called on its harbor discharging tons of cargo from all corners of the earth, along with sailors and whalers who rioted and brawled for sport.

Since the capital moved with Kamehameha, Waikīkī’s reign as capital of the kingdom was ended, at least until his next visit. For the next dozen years or so, Waikīkī, Kona and Lāhaina alternated as the capitals as Kamehameha spent long periods of time in each place.

The image shows Waikiki in a map prepared by Kotzebue in 1817.  Diamond Head is at the bottom right – ʻApuakehau Stream appears to be in about the middle of the image, with taro loʻi on either side of it.

© 2012 Hoʻokuleana LLC

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

You Lived Downtown, Because You Worked Downtown

… then came the tram to Pacific Heights.

The earliest residential subdivisions in the Islands appear to have been laid out by the government on the level areas between Thomas Square and Pawaʻa, initially under governmental auspices, during the 1880s.

The area was known as Kulaokahu‘a (“the plain of the boundary”) and commonly referred to as the Plains. Kulaokahu‘a was the comparatively level ground below Makiki Valley (between the mauka fertile valleys and the makai wetlands.) This included areas such as Kaka‘ako, Kewalo, Makiki, Pawa‘a and Mo‘ili‘ili.

In his review of the events of 1880, Thrum reported: "Building lots on the plains sold at auction by the Government the past summer averaged over $500, the lots ranging about 100 feet frontage by 150 feet in depth."

Two years later he wrote: "The plains to the east of Honolulu proper are being rapidly built up with residences so that the blocks and streets are now well defined as far out as Punahou Street."

Residential development soon extended in the mauka, ʻEwa and Waikīkī directions.  In 1883, "a number of suburban lots adjoining Kapiʻolani Park [were] placed upon the market" and "realized good figures."

In his retrospect for 1890, Thrum noted that "the government has held two or three sales of lots for building purposes adjacent to the city. Those on the slope of Punchbowl found ready applicants and lively competition.  … "

During the same year, the Oʻahu Railway and Land Company sold lots at Pearl City, by their new railroad line.

New subdivisions "between Punchbowl slope and Punahou," in Kaimuki, and on Pacific Heights appeared in the late 1890s.

In 1899 the Pacific Heights road was laid out by Mr. Wall, and sold by Hawaiʻi's reported first subdivider, Mr. Charles S. Desky (who reportedly “pulled several shady land transactions.")

By 1900, Honolulu had a population of more than 39,000 and was in the midst of a development boom, creating tremendous need for more housing.  Charles Desky built the Pacific Heights Electric Railway to support the housing development he had created near downtown Honolulu.

It is the first “electric passenger road” in Hawaiʻi; as such it is the forerunner of a system which before many months stretched out from the City center in every direction.

Prior to the development, "That part of the slope toward the city was gentle, with many patches of guava trees, kalu bushes and stands of cactus (panini.) There were no large or tall trees up to the summit until where the kukui nut, ʻōhiʻa and koa trees started along the ridge to the Koʻolau range.”

A record of this enterprise appeared in Thrum's Annual for 1900, which said Desky and his real estate developments:
"The Kaimuki addition and Pacific Heights tracts are attracting a number of selectors, and desirable residences are in course of construction in both of these sections. ... Main roads and streets have also been constructed, and the Pacific Heights enterprise promises Honolulu its first electric road in the course of a few weeks, to be followed by the construction of an elegant hotel, plans of which are completed."

Additional information about the building of the electric railway came in the Hawaiian Gazette of November 13, 1900:
"The installation of the Pacific Heights electric railway during the past week deserves more than passing notice. It marks the opening of a new era for Honolulu in more ways than one.”

"During the summer months, in the States, the electric cars that radiate from the cities into the country and to the seaside are crowded far into the night with thousands people who ride for the sheer luxury of getting out into fresh air; and as the price Is uniformly five cents for any distance, It brings within reach of the poorest a degree of comfort healthful exercise unknown before the advent of the electric car."

"The new railway not only provides this feature, with a beautiful view thrown In. but It for the first time makes easily and quickly accessible the foothills back of the city, which are unquestionably among the most healthful of all residence locations."

Advertisements in ‘The Friend;’ “PACIFIC HEIGHTS.  Offers greater attractions and inducements as a site for choice residences than any other portion of Honolulu. The Pacific Heights Electric Railway Line affords easy access to all lots; and water and electric lights are supplied from independent systems at reasonable rates. To parties intending to purchase and improve, especially favorable terms will be given. For further particulars apply to Chas. S. Desky, Progress Block.”

"Mr. Desky is to be congratulated upon the successful inauguration of a large enterprise for one man to undertake to handle. The community should show their appreciation of his pluck by liberally patronizing the road, at the same time they will be getting more than they pay for." (Hawaiian Gazette)

"In those days - there were only four automobiles on Oahu in 1901 - you lived downtown because you worked downtown, you couldn't live in Kaimuki or in Manoa."  (star-bulletin)

"Unlike today, when we build a community, we send out a bus to service the people, but in those days they'd put a streetcar out there with nobody there. It was one of those 'if you build it, they will come' things."  (star-bulletin)

“The streetcars created neighborhoods. People could suddenly live elsewhere and find a way into town."

Subdividing soon became a full-time occupation. In January 1898, Theodore F. Lansing and A. V. Gear formed the firm of Gear, Lansing & Co. and before the end of the year had subdivided a 10-acre tract in Makiki and had begun work on a 260-acre subdivision (with an option for another 260) in Kaimuki.

Maps of Honolulu in 1897 show few byways outside the central city. There were just a few little farm roads. Yet in 1900-1901, Mānoa, McCully and Kaimuki are all laid out with grids and it's definitely because of the streetcars.

By 1904, the streetcars were averaging 18,327 riders a day, 365 days a year.

The image shows the first electric streetcar system in Honolulu was a small stand-alone operation by Charles S Desky in 1900 servicing Pacific Heights (JLB Press.)  In addition, I have included some other Pacific Heights and related images in a folder of like name in the Photos section on my Facebook page.

© 2012 Hoʻokuleana LLC

Monday, November 26, 2012

Maui Airport - (Puʻunēnē)

Puʻunēnē is a place name on Maui (pu'u means hill and nēnē is the native Hawaiian goose - "goose hill".) It is the site of an early sugar mill built in 1901 and associated camp, as well as one of Hawaiʻi’s early airports.

On June 15, 1938, Governor’s Executive Order No. 804 set aside 300.71 acres of land at Pulehunui for the new Maui Airport to be under the control and management of the Superintendent of Public Works.

The Department of Public Works started construction on the new airport shortly after July 1, 1938.  The airport was opened on June 30, 1939 (the new Maui Airport replaced a smaller airfield at Māʻalaea.)

Inter-Island Airways, Ltd (to be later known as Hawaiian Air) constructed a depot; a taxiway and turn-around were completed and graveled to serve the depot and in 1940 Inter-Island Airways funded airport station improvements.

During the time between June 30, 1939 and December 7, 1941, the civil air field was gradually enlarged and improved with some areas being paved.  A small Naval Air Facility was established at the airport by the US Navy.

Maui Airport became one of the three most important airports to the Territorial Airport System.

Immediately after December 7, 1941 Pearl Harbor attack, the military took control of all air fields in the Territory and began the expansion of Maui Airport at Puʻunēnē.

Army forces eventually concentrated on Oʻahu, leaving the Navy as the primary user of the field.  An expansion lengthened and widened the runways.

The northeast-southwest runway at Puʻunēnē was extended northerly to 6,000-feet and the northwest-southeast runway was extended southerly to 7,000-feet.

A taxiway, 7,000-feet long, connecting the two runways on the east side had been built. Water, sewer, electricity and telephone lines had been installed.  Certain related structures had also been erected.

Under Navy control, the facility was renamed Naval Air Station Puʻunēnē, the airport served as a principal carrier plane training base.

By the end of the war, Puʻunēnē had a total complement of over 3,300-personnel and 271-aircraft.  A total of 106-squadrons and carrier air groups passed through during WW II.

The demands of the war were such that the Navy found Puʻunēnē inadequate for the aircraft carrier training requirement and it was necessary to establish another large air station on Maui.

Accordingly, a site was chosen near the town of Kahului and, after the purchase of 1,341-acres of cane land, construction was started in 1942 on what was to become Naval Air Station, Kahului (NASKA.)

NASKA became operational in late 1943.  Air crews were trained at both Puʻunēnē and NASKA.  The NASKA facility later became known as Kahului Airport, under the jurisdiction of the Hawaii Aeronautics Commission.

Following the war, the Territory took back various airfields and converted them back into full-scale commercial operation of airports.  In December 1948, the Navy declared the Puʻunēnē Airport land surplus to their needs and the airport reverted to the Territory under Quitclaim Deed from the US Government.

No major improvements were made to Puʻunēne ̄Airport, as the plan was to move commercial operations to the former Naval Air Station at Kahului, which was considered much more desirable for commercial airline operation.

In 1947, the Superintendent of the Territorial Public Works Department proposed readapting Maui Airport to the requirements of commercial aviation.  Hawaiian Airlines Ltd., the only scheduled operator, had 496 schedules a month and flew a considerable number of special flights in addition.  Non-scheduled operators averaged approximately 100 round trips from Honolulu per month.

However, as Joint Resolution 18, of the State legislature in 1947 notes, “As the US Navy will abandon use of its Kahului Airport on Maui, and this airport may be more economically operated and provide safer airplane operations than the territorially owned airport at Puʻunēn̄e, the Superintendent of Public Works is directed to make a survey with CAA officials and the US Navy to determine whether or not the Kahului Airport can be made available for civilian flying in lieu of Puʻunēnē Airport; and determine whether airplane operations at Kahului Airport can be carried on more safely than at Puʻunēnē; and whether or not the Kahului Airport can be operated more economically than Puʻunēnē.”

In December 1947, the Navy turned over jurisdiction of Kahului Airport to the Territory.

By June 1950, Maui Airport was still the principal airport on the Island of Maui and was served by all scheduled and non-scheduled operators.

Later in 1950, it was decided that certain parcels of land of the Puʻunēnē Airport be utilized to develop farm lots for the unemployed under lease arrangements with the Territory.  Lots were laid out at the southeast end of Puʻunēnē Airport for use as piggeries.

The decision to move interisland air operations from Puʻunēnē to Kahului was made on May 25, 1951.  On June 24, 1952 all airport operations and facilities were transferred from Puʻunēnē Airport to Kahului Airport.

The Maui Airport at Puʻunēnē was placed in caretaker status on June 30, 1953 and was closed to aeronautical activity on December 31, 1955.

It was decided to use an old runway for drag races and time trials in May 1956; it remains in use as Maui Raceway Park as an automobile "drag strip" and park for such activities as go-kart racing and model airplane flying.

Other uses of the former site include discussions for the Maui Regional Public Safety Complex and prison facility to alleviate overcrowding at the existing 7-acre Maui Community Correctional Center facility in Wailuku (it is not clear what the status of that proposal is.)

The image shows Maui Airport (Puʻunēnē Field) in 1951.  In addition, I have added other related images in a folder of like name in the Photos section on my Facebook page.

© 2012 Hoʻokuleana LLC

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Education in Hawaiʻi

Before the foreigners arrived, Hawaiians had a vocational learning system, where everyone was taught a certain skill by the kahuna.  Skills taught included canoe builder, medicine men, genealogists, navigators, farmers, house builders and priests.

The arrival of the first company of American missionaries in Hawaiʻi in 1820 marked the beginning of Hawaiʻiʻi’s phenomenal rise to literacy. The chiefs became proponents for education and edicts were enacted by the King and the council of chiefs to stimulate the people to reading and writing.

By 1831, in just eleven years from the first arrival of the missionaries, Hawaiians had built 1,103 schoolhouses. This covered every district throughout the eight major islands and serviced an estimated 52,882 students.  (Laimana)

The proliferation of schoolhouses was augmented by the printing of 140,000 copies of the pīʻāpā (elementary Hawaiian spelling book) by 1829 and the staffing of the schools with 1,000-plus Hawaiian teachers.  (Laimana)

The word pīʻāpā is said to have been derived from the method of teaching Hawaiians to begin the alphabet “b, a, ba.” The Hawaiians pronounced “b” like “p” and said “pī ʻā pā.”  (Pukui)

In 1831, Lahainaluna Seminary, started by missionary Lorrin Andrews, was created in Maui to be a school for teachers and preachers so that they could teach on the islands. The islands’ first newspaper, Ka Lama Hawaii, was printed at this school.

Hilo Boarding School opened in 1836, built by missionary David Lyman, a missionary. Eight boys lived there the first year. This school was so successful a girls’ boarding school was created in 1838.

Oʻahu’s first school was called the Chiefs’ Children’s School (Royal School.)  The cornerstone of the original school was laid on June 28, 1839 in the area of the old barracks of ʻIolani Palace (at about the site of the present State Capitol of Hawaiʻi.)

The school was created by King Kamehameha III, and at his request was run by missionaries Mr. and Mrs. Amos S. Cooke; the main goal of this school was to groom the next generation of the highest ranking chief’s children of the realm and secure their positions for Hawaiʻi's Kingdom.

The Chiefs’ Children’s School was unique because for the first time Aliʻi children were brought together in a group to be taught, ostensibly, about the ways of governance.  The School also acted as another important unifying force among the ruling elite, instilling in their children common principles, attitudes and values, as well as a shared vision.

Kamehameha III called for a highly-organized educational system; the Constitution of 1840 helped Hawaiʻi public schools become reorganized.

William Richards, a missionary, help start the reorganization, and was later replaced by missionary Richard Armstrong.  Richard Armstrong is known as the “the father of American education in Hawaiʻi.”

 “Statute for the Regulation of Schools” passed by the King and chiefs on October 15, 1840. Its preamble stated, “The basis on which the Kingdom rests is wisdom and knowledge. Peace and prosperity cannot prevail in the land, unless the people are taught in letters and in that which constitutes prosperity. If the children are not taught, ignorance must be perpetual, and children of the chiefs cannot prosper, nor any other children”.

The creation of the Common Schools (where the 3 Rs were taught) marks the beginning of the government’s involvement in education in Hawaiʻi.  At first, the schools were no more than grass huts.

Armstrong helped bring better textbooks, qualified teachers and better school buildings.  Students were taught in Hawaiian how to read, write, math, geography, singing and to be “God-fearing” citizens. (By 1863, three years after Armstrong’s death, the missionaries stopped being a part of Hawaiʻi’s education system.)

The 1840 educational law mandated compulsory attendance for children ages four to fourteen. Any village that had fifteen or more school-age children was required to provide a school for their students.

Oʻahu College, later named Punahou School, was founded in 1841 on land given to missionary Hiram Bingham by Boki (at the request of Kaʻahumanu.)  Bingham gave the land to the mission for the school.

By 1832, the literacy rate of Hawaiians (at the time was 78 percent) had surpassed that of Americans on the continent. The literacy rate of the adult Hawaiian population skyrocketed from near zero in 1820 to a conservative estimate of 91 percent - and perhaps as high as 95 percent - by 1834. (Laimana)

From 1820 to 1832, in which Hawaiian literacy grew by 91 percent, the literacy rate on the US continent grew by only 6 percent and did not exceed the 90 percent level until 1902 - three hundred years after the first settlers landed in Jamestown. By way of comparison, it is significant that overall European literacy rates in 1850 had not risen much above 50 percent. (Laimana)

The government-sponsored education system in Hawaiʻi is the longest running public school system west of the Mississippi River.  To this day, Hawaiʻi is the only state to have a completely-centralized State public school system.

I have added some images of some of the early Hawaiʻi schools in a folder of like name in the Photos section ON MY Facebook page.

© 2012 Hoʻokuleana LLC

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Papaʻenaʻena Heiau - Waikīkī, Oʻahu

Hawaiʻi’s iconic landmark, Lēʻahi (Diamond Head) overlooks Waikīkī.  Papaʻenaʻena heiau once stood on its western slope, overlooking the Waikīkī coastline.  It was referred to by some early writers as "Lēʻahi heiau."

“It consisted of a mana (supernatural or divine power) house approximately 50 feet long; an oven house (hale umu); a drum house; a waiea or spiritual house; an anuʻu or tower; a lele (altar) and twelve large images. The heiau was bordered by a rectangular wooden fence approximately six to eight feet tall with an eight-foot wide base, which narrowed to three feet at its apex.”  (Ireland)

It is likely that the heiau was built in 1783 by Kahekili, the mōʻī (ruler) of Maui, as part of a victory celebration following Kahekili conquest of Oʻahu.

Surfing was one of the principal attractions for Waikīkī to both the chiefs and commoners who resided there.  “Here at the ‘surfing heiau’ of Papaʻenaʻena, a terraced structure … is where surfers came to offer their sacrifices in order to obtain mana and knowledge of the surf.” (Kanahele)

When surf was ‘up,’ Kahuna at Papaʻenaʻena heiau reportedly flew a kite at the heiau as a signal to the people of the wave conditions.  (Kanahele)

An ancient chant tells of Papaʻenaʻena and surfing:
There at Kalahuewehe is the big surf created by Papaʻenaʻena.
Arise, of ye surf of Kalahuewehe, arise! ...
The kahuna of Papaʻenaʻena flies his moon kite
To proclaim the suitability of the sea for surfing.
The eager lookout on yonder highland
Anxiously scans the skies for this signal,
And relays the good news by runners;
Farmers, woodsmen, bird catchers all,
Leave their tasks and fetching their surf boards
Hurry to the beach at Waikiki.
Soon the sea is filled with natives
Sporting in the billowy surf;
Trick riding, zigging and zagging, amidst the foam,
Shouting words of defiance against the angry surf
To topple the rider if it can .... (Kanahele)

Papaʻenaʻena heiau was also a luakini heiau; human sacrifices were made at the terraced stone structure.  The heiau was probably used for sacrificial or sacred purposes for 35 years.

Some historians believe that when Kamehameha I conquered ‘Oahu in 1795 at the Battle of Nuʻuanu, Kamehameha I used Papaʻenaʻena heiau to offer a sacrifice of his slain rival, Kalanikūpule, to his war god Kūkaʻilimoku.

After Kamehameha’s troops were overcome with dysentery in 1804, that stopped his attempt to conquer Kauaʻi, Kamehameha repaired Papaʻenaʻena heiau and offered in sacrifice 400 pigs, numerous coconuts and bananas and three kapu violators.

The heiau was also used for one (possibly its last) sacrifice.  Kanihonui was killed and placed on the Papaʻenaʻena alter.

Kamehameha learned that Queen Kaʻahumanu had an affair with Kanihonui.  He was a handsome 19-year old.  Reportedly, Kaʻahumanu had seduced the boy while she was intoxicated; in addition, the boy was the son of Kamehameha’s half-sister – and, Kamehameha and Kaʻahumanu raised him.

George W. Bates, in 1854, describes a heiau at the foot of Lēʻahi (believed to be Papaʻenaʻena) as: “Just beyond Waikiki stand the remains of an ancient heiau, or pagan temple. It is a huge structure, nearly quadrangular, and is composed merely of a heavy wall of loose lava stones, resembling the sort of inclosure commonly called a ‘cattlepen.’”

“This heiau was placed at the very foot of Diamond crater, and can be seen at some distance from the sea. Its dimensions externally are 130 by 70 feet. The walls I found to be from six to eight feet high, eight feet thick at the base, and four at the top."

“On climbing the broken wall near the ocean, and by carefully looking over the interior, I discovered the remains of three altars located at the western extremity, and closely resembling parallelograms. I searched for the remains of human victims once immolated on these altars, but found none; for they had returned to their primitive dust, or been carried away by curious visitors.”

Later (at about 1856,) Queen Emma ordered her workers to take rocks from Papaʻenaʻena heiau to build a stone wall around her property at Waikīkī.

During the Māhele the site was transferred to the future King Lunalilo.  After the king's death, this site was sold to James Campbell, in 1883.  Later, Walter F. Dillingham bought the land from Campbell.

With the help of famed Chicago architect, David Adler, the Dillinghams built a home similar to the Villa La Pietra they admired in Tuscany while on their honeymoon – they named their new home La Pietra – meaning The Gem or The Rock.

After Walter’s death, La Pietra was sold to Hawaii School for Girls, who relocated their school there (1969.)  The former Papaʻenaʻena heiau site is now the home for La Pietra - Hawaii School for Girls, an independent, college preparatory school for girls, grades 6 through 12.

When Papaʻenaʻena heiau stood on Diamond Head, it overlooked what is today First Break, the beginning of Kalahuewehe, a surfing spot famous for hundreds of years.

The image notes a representation of Papaʻenaʻena heiau (NPS.)  I have added a couple similar maps and images in a folder of like name in the Photos section on my Facebook page.

© 2012 Hoʻokuleana LLC

Friday, November 23, 2012

Seamen’s Bethel Chapel (Oʻahu Bethel Church)

The American Seamen's Friend Society (ASFS) of New York, organized in May 1828 (though not officially incorporated 1833;) in 1832 sent the Rev. John Diell to Hawai'i as its first chaplain to the port of Honolulu.

He constructed a two story chapel for the Seamen's Bethel on a lot given by Kamehameha III – on what we now call Bethel Street.)  The site was the approximate location of “The Friend” Building (926 Bethel Street - West side of street between Merchant and King.)

Situated on what was then the waterfront, it was started by the American Seamen's Friend Society to minister to English-speaking sailors from whaling and trading ships.

The worship services attracted a number of English-speaking townspeople who in 1837 organized themselves as Oʻahu Bethel Church - the earliest regular church services in English in the Hawaiian Kingdom.

Poor health forced Diell to leave Hawai'i, and he died at sea in 1841.  Rev. Samuel C. Damon was selected as his replacement.

Damon had been preparing to go to India as a missionary and was studying the Tamil language for that purpose, when an urgent call came for a seaman's chaplain at the port of Honolulu in the Hawaiian Islands.

He was ordained to the Congregational ministry on September 15, 1841 and he decided to accept the position at Honolulu; he arrived in late-1842.

Throughout the 1840s there averaged over 400 ships in port each whaling season, with a record high of over 600 in 1846. Damon's report from Honolulu in 1851 recorded the visits of 558 whale ships and barks, 27 brigs and 35 schooners, bringing approximately 15,000 men into the port during the year.

Reverend Damon also founded the English-language paper “The Friend” in 1843 and ran the paper from the Seamen’s Bethel Church until his death in 1885.

The Friend described itself as the “Oldest Newspaper West of the Rockies” in the early 1900s; it was a monthly newspaper for seamen which included news from both American and English newspapers as well as announcements of upcoming events, reprints of sermons, poetry, local news, editorials, ship arrivals and departures and a listing of marriages and deaths.

Between 1840 and 1870, an annual 6,000 seamen visited Honolulu, many worshiping at first Reverend Diell’s and then Reverend Damon’s church.

As Oʻahu Bethel's numbers grew, and ship calls increased, need for a separate church became evident. In 1852 some Oʻahu Bethel members left to form what was to become Fort Street Church. Oʻahu Bethel continued to conduct services, later renaming itself Bethel Union Church.

In 1886 a raging waterfront fire destroyed the Seamen's Bethel, which was still Bethel Union's home. The idea surfaced of combining Bethel Union, now without a home, with the well-established Fort Street Church (at what is now the ʻEwa Makai corner of Fort Street and Beretania at the top of the Fort Street Mall.)

In 1887 a formal merger of Bethel Union and Fort Street Church created Central Union Church, with 337 members.

In 1892 Central Union Church moved into a new "blue-stone" (volcanic basalt) building across from Washington Place, Queen Liliuokalani's residence. Within 15 years, however, rapid growth plus noise and ventilation problems created pressures to move.

In 1920, Central Union's then-pastor, Dr. Albert Palmer, chose a desirable 8.3-acre site at Punahou and Beretania streets. The site was "Woodlawn," for years the residence and dairy farm of prominent businessman BF Dillingham and his family.

Mrs. Emma Louise Dillingham, by then a widow, agreed to sell - she had been a member since Bethel Union days. In 1922, the cornerstone was laid, and the present sanctuary, designed in traditional New England style, was completed in 1924.

In 1924, Central Union Church, also known as the "Church in a Garden", moved to its present location on Beretania Street.

The image shows the initial Seamen’s Bethel Chapel (Oʻahu Bethel Church) that was located on Bethel Street.  In addition, I have included some related images of this and subsequent related churches in a folder of like name in the Photos section on my Facebook page.

© 2012 Hoʻokuleana LLC

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving !!!

Thanksgiving is a major holiday celebrated in the United States, with origins dating back centuries to Colonial times.

The faith of celebrating a harvest of plenty was a dramatic event in early Colonial America, since food supplies were far from dependable. Years of massive starvation were as common as times of plenty.

Although Native Americans were known to have harvest celebrations for centuries, if not millennia, before arrival of Europeans, the quintessence of Thanksgiving in all regions was a joint celebration of colonists and indigenous peoples, sharing the bounty of autumn and their common survival.

The site and date of origin of Thanksgiving are matters of great dispute, with regional claims being made by widely disparate locations in North America. The chief claims are: Saint Augustine, Florida - 1565; Baffin Island, Canada - 1578; Jamestown, Virginia - 1619 and Plymouth, Massachusetts - 1621.

In Hawaiʻi, the Makahiki is a form of the "first fruits" festivals common to many cultures throughout the world. It is similar in timing and purpose to Thanksgiving, Oktoberfest and other harvest celebrations.

Something similar was observed throughout Polynesia, but it was in pre-contact Hawaiʻi that the festival reached its greatest elaboration.

Makahiki was celebrated during a designated period of time following the harvesting season. As the year's harvest was gathered, tributes in the form of goods and produce were given to the chiefs from November through December.

Various rites of purification and celebration in December and January closed the observance of the Makahiki season. During the special holiday the success of the harvest was commemorated with prayers of praise made to the Creator, ancestral guardians, caretakers of the elements and various deities - particularly Lono.

No one knows when the first western Thanksgiving feast was held in Hawaiʻi, but from all apparent possibilities, the first recorded one took place in Honolulu and was held among the families of the American missionaries from New England.

According to the reported entry in Lowell Smith’s journal on December 6, 1838: "This day has been observed by us missionaries and people of Honolulu as a day of Thanksgiving and praise to Almighty God. Something new for this nation. The people turned out pretty well and they dined in small groups and in a few instances in large groups. We missionaries all dined at Dr. Judd's and supped at Brother Bingham’s. ... An interesting day; seemed like old times - Thanksgiving in the United States."

The first Thanksgiving Proclamation in Hawaiʻi appears to have been issued on November 23, 1849, and set the 31st day of December as a date of Thanksgiving. This appeared in ‘The Friend’ on December 1, 1849.

The following, under the signature of King Kamehameha III, named a day in December as a day of public thanks. The Thanksgiving Proclamation of 1849 read, in part:
“In accordance with the laws of this Kingdom, and the excellent usage of Christian Nations, it has pleased his Majesty, in council, to appoint the Thirty-first day of December, next, as a day of public thanksgiving to God, for His unnumbered mercies and blessings to this nation; and people of every class are respectfully requested to assemble in their several houses of worship on that day, to render united praise to the Father of nations, and to implore His favor in time to come, upon all who dwell upon these shores, as individuals, as families, and as a nation.”  (Signed at the Palace. Honolulu, November, 23, 1849.)

"It will be seen by Royal Proclamation that Monday, the 31st of December has been appointed by His Majesty in Council as a day of Thanksgiving. We are glad to see this time-honored custom introduced into this Kingdom."

The celebratory day of Thanksgiving changed over time.  On December 26, 1941 President Roosevelt signed into law a bill making the date of Thanksgiving a matter of federal law, fixing the day as the fourth Thursday of November.

The image is a drawing, "The First Thanksgiving at Plymouth" by Jennie A. Brownscombe.

Happy Thanksgiving!!!

© 2012 Hoʻokuleana LLC

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Fort Alexander – Princeville

When we think of Russia’s interest in Hawai‘i, we initially (and, typically, only) think of “Russian Fort Elizabeth” in Waimea, Kaua‘i.  However, Hawai‘i’s interactions with Russia go well beyond that, yet only short-lived.

In the early-1800s, multiple foreign interests, including Russia, were developing trading relationships with Hawai‘i.  Hawai‘i served as an important provisioning site for traders, whalers and others crossing the Pacific.

The Russian story starts when three-masted Behring wrecked on the shores of Kaua‘i’s Waimea Bay early on the morning of January 31, 1815.  The Behring had a load of seal skins/otter pelts bound for the Russian-American Trading Company in Sitka, Alaska.

Russian-American Company’s governor, Alexander Baranov, sent German-born Georg Anton Schäffer (1779-1836) to the Hawaiian Islands to retrieve the cargo (he wanted to exchange the furs for sandalwood.)

Schäffer first landed in Honolulu and, under the pretext of building a storehouse near Honolulu Harbor, began building a fort and raised the Russian flag.  Kamehameha had him removed and Schäffer then voyaged to Kaua‘i.

There, King Kaumuali‘i, who had ceded Kaua‘i to King Kamehameha I in 1810, had seized the Behring’s cargo and had the valuable pelts taken to his home in west Kaua‘i.

Schäffer quickly gained favor with Kaumuali‘i – and, reportedly, Kaumuali‘i was considering joining forces with Russia to reclaim his rule from Kamehameha (that Kaumuali‘i had ceded over 5-years before.)

On May 21, 1816, and without the knowledge or approval of Czar Alexander Pavlovich, Kaumuali‘i signed a document that put Kaua‘i under the protection of the Russian Empire.

In return, Schäffer promised Kaumuali‘i protection and an armed Russian warship to lead an attack on Kamehameha’s forces.  (Baranoff later informed Schäffer that he was not authorized to make such agreements.)

On July 1, 1816, Schäffer and Kaumuali‘i entered into a secret agreement to use Schäffer’s (purported) Russian authority to reclaim Kaua‘i from King Kamehameha I, and also to launch expeditions against other islands that Kaumuali‘i felt he had a hereditary right to rule.

Kaumuali‘i had thoughts of conquering Maui, Lānaʻi, Moloka‘i and O‘ahu, which he felt to be his right based on lineage.

Subsequently, Kaumuali‘i gave Schäffer Hanalei valley and two or three other valuable pieces of land.  Schaffer  went  to  Hanalei  on  September  30  and  renamed  the  valley Schäffertal  (Schäffer’s  Valley.)

Schäffer began work on two earthen fortresses in Hanalei: Fort Alexander (named after the Czar Alexander and built in what is now Princeville - by the valet parking at the Princeville Resort); and Fort Barclay, named for Russian general Barclay deTooly and built nearer to Hanalei River.

Unlike Waimea’s Fort Elizabeth (with massive stone walls,) Fort Alexander had low earthen walls.  While the Waimea Fort bears the Russian name, reportedly, Schaffer’s main focus for the Russian-American Company was not Waimea, but Hanalei, and they spent most of their time around Princeville.

Schäffer’s grandiose gestures were not confined to fort-building.  He was also able to take possession of the ship Lydia and promptly gave the Lydia to Kaumuali‘i.

Meanwhile, rumors of Schäffer’s activities had filtered back to the Czar’s court. On November 21, 1816, Lieutenant Otto von Kotzebue arrived in Hawai‘i on the Russian Navy brig Rurik.

He repudiated Schäffer’s acts, informing King Kamehameha that Schäffer and Kaumuali‘i did not have the support of the Russian Emperor.

On May 8, 1817 the Russians were expelled from Hawai‘i; some of Schäffer’s men left for Sitka and Schäffer was provided safe passage from the Hawaiian Islands.

It wasn't until August 1818 that all parties had agreed that Kaua‘i had indeed been abandoned by the Russian-American Company, and for a couple of years following that, efforts were still being made to recover from the damage done by Schäffer.

An outline of the foundation of Fort Alexander may be seen on the lawn at the St. Regis Princeville Resort.

© 2012 Hoʻokuleana LLC

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

What’s in a name?

In ancient Hawaiʻi, there were no “towns,” “villages” or “cities,” in the modern context.  Around the 1400-1500s, the land was broken down into ahupuaʻa, ʻili and other physical subdivisions.

All of the land was owned by the ruling chief.  Each ahupuaʻa in turn was ruled by a lower chief, or aliʻi ʻai.  He, in turn, appointed an overseer, or konohiki.  (The common people never owned or ruled land.)

A typical ahupuaʻa (what we generally refer to as watersheds, today) was a long strip of land, narrow at its mountain summit top and becoming wider as it ran down a valley into the sea to the outer edge of the reef.  If there was no reef then the sea boundary would be about one and a half miles from the shore.

Each ahupuaʻa had its own name and boundary lines.  Often the markers were natural features such as a large rock or a line of trees or even the home of a certain bird.  A valley ahupuaʻa usually used its ridges and peaks as boundaries.

An ahupuaʻa in South Kohala on the Island of Hawaiʻi is Waimea (reddish water (as from erosion of red soil.))  Over time, the growing community concentrated at a cross-road at the lower slopes of the Kohala Mountains – that town was referred to as Waimea.

The Territory, officially through the US Board of Geographic Names, in 1914, agreed to name the community "Waimea" (and further noted it as a “village.”)  Later, in 1954, they revised the name to simply Waimea (and dropped the village reference.)

While there are several other “Waimea” communities in the islands, and folks don’t seem to get confused with the name, the naming of the Post Office in Waimea was different.

On July 16 1832, Missionary Lorenzo Lyons (Makua Laiana) replaced Reverend Dwight Baldwin as minister at Waimea, Hawai‘i. Lyons’ “Church Field” was centered in Waimea, at what is now the historic church ‘Imiola.

He was known in the town as the man who carried out many functions.  In October, 1854 Father Lyons became the first official Postmaster of Waimea, a post he held until he was very old. The Honolulu Directory of 1884 listed him as pastor of ʻImiola Church, postmaster, school agent and government physician.

In the early 1830s it took one year or more for mail to reach Waimea from the continent, coming by way of Cape Horn.  When the transcontinental railroad was built, it took about a month for mail to reach Waimea.

Prior to 1854 there was no regular mail service on the Islands. Letters were forwarded by chance opportunities. Father Lyons described the first official shipment of mail that he handled, a small bag, sealed with wax, and containing a few letters. This first mail shipment had been carried from Hilo to Waimea.

Over the years, the communities across the state grew.  With that, some uncertainty over postal facility names apparently created some confusion.  In addition to the Waimea postal station in South Kohala, there was another “Waimea” post office on Kauaʻi.

At the time, Waimea, Kauaʻi was a larger community.  To avoid confusion, on November 8, 1900, the Waimea, Hawaii Island Post Office was changed to Kamuela Post Office.  (USPS Daily Bulletin, January 9, 1901)  The Postmaster was Elizabeth W. Lyons, daughter of Lorenzo Lyons.

There are a couple stories about where the “Kamuela” (Samuel) name came from.

Some incorrectly suggest it was named after Samuel M Spencer (suggesting he was a Postmaster for the facility – however, there are no records that indicate he ever held that position.)

Samuel Spencer was, however, a prominent member of the community and member of the Hawaii Island Board of Supervisors serving at its Chair (equivalent to the present position of Mayor, from 1924-1944; the island’s longest serving.)

The Spencer story was told that when mail sorters in Honolulu were dividing the mail, they would “send it to Kamuela” (calling him by name, suggesting he would receive and deliver it.)  Since he apparently was never with the postal service, this story doesn’t seem plausible.

Spencer was politically prominent almost 25-years after the Post Office name change.  Likewise, there are no known references to Sam Spencer using “Kamuela” as his moniker.  And, acknowledgment to him was made in the naming of a coastal beach park – Samuel M Spencer Beach Park (with no Kamuela reference.)  That park was renamed “Spencer Park at ʻŌhaiʻula Beach,” in 2003.

What seems plausible (and is supported by documentation within the records of the US Board of Geographic Names) is the story that the Kamuela Post Office was named for Samuel “Kamuela” Parker, grandson of John Parker (founder of the Parker Ranch.)

In 1868, when his grandfather died, Samuel (at the age of 15) inherited half the Parker Ranch, with his uncle John Palmer Parker II (1827–1891) inheriting the other half. Samuel was attending Punahou School on Oʻahu at the time.

In 1883, Parker took his first political role when he became a member of the Privy Council of King Kalākua. He was appointed to the House of Nobles in the legislature from 1886 to 1890. In early-1891, Kalākaua died and Queen Liliʻuokalani became the new ruler; Parker was appointed to be her Minister of Foreign Affairs.  (Samuel Parker was notably successful well before the Post Office name change.)

While I previously bought into the “send it to Kamuela” scenario, it’s clear to me now that Kamuela Post Office was named after Samuel Parker, grandson of John Parker and prominent Waimea and Hawaiʻi citizen.

A sad side story:  Samuel’s daughters, Helen and Eva Parker, were friends of Princess Kaʻiulani, and, sadly, riding horseback in a rainstorm on Parker Ranch led to her illness and untimely death a few months later.

An interesting postal side story:  Postal Service to Kamuela Post Office was discontinued on March 5, 1908 and mail was rerouted to Kukuihaele.  (USPS Daily Bulletin, March 5, 1908) On May 9, 1908, the order was modified and mail was rerouted to Kawaihae, instead of Kukuihaele. ((USPS Daily Bulletin, May 9, 1908) Post services were reestablished at Kamuela Post Office on June 9, 1909.  (USPS Daily Bulletin, August 6, 1909)

It turns out a former postmaster and his nephew (Moses Koki and Joshua Koki, respectively) were charged with the embezzlement of post office funds from the Kamuela post office.  (The Hawaiian Star, March 18, 1908)

Remember, it’s the Post Office that is called “Kamuela;” the region and town have long been and continue to be known as “Waimea.”

The image notes the Kamuela Post Office zip code, 96743; in addition, I have added other related images in a folder of like name in the Photos section on my Facebook page.

© 2012 Hoʻokuleana LLC

Monday, November 19, 2012


Between approximately 20,000 and 5,000 years ago, water previously locked in glacial ice returned to the world’s oceans, and the sea-level rose over 300-feet to approximately its current level.

Rising sea levels flooded the previously dry, earlier reef deposits, which had formed hundreds of thousands of years previously when sea level was comparable to modern levels.

During this high stand, there appears to have been an increase in coral reef growth.  The coastal area expanded seaward with marine sediments.   The great shoreline sand berms must have developed around the islands at this time because this was when calcareous sand was being produced and delivered to the shorelines in large quantities.  (Hammatt)

The current urban district we now call Kakaʻako is significantly larger than the traditional area of the same name, which is described in mid-19th century documents and maps as a small ‘ili (traditional land unit – portion of ahupuaʻa.)

The undeveloped natural condition of the area consisted of low-lying marshes, tidal flats, fishponds and reef areas. Beginning in the late-nineteenth century, these low-lying areas were filled in and then developed, which permanently changed the area into its present fully-urbanized character.

Kaka‘ako is mentioned in Thrum’s version of the legend of Kūʻula, the god presiding over the fish, and his son ʻAiʻai, who was the first to teach the Hawaiians how to make various fishing lines and nets, the first to set up a ko‘a kūʻula (a rock shrine on which the fishermen would place their first catch as an offering to Kūʻula) and the first to set up koʻa ia (fishing stations where certain fish were known to gather.)

Leaving his birthplace in Maui, ʻAiʻai traveled around the islands, establishing koʻa kūʻula and ko‘a ia; on O‘ahu, he landed first at Keana Point, and then traveled around the island.

This story mentions several place names near the Kaka‘ako area, including the Kuloloia (Kulolia) shore, Pākākā (an ‘ili or heiau at Honolulu Harbor) and Kapapoko, an eating house near the harbor used by Ka‘ahumanu, wife of Kamehameha I. (‘Ī‘ī)

In addition to Kakaʻako, the modern reference to the area also includes lands once known as Ka‘ākaukukui, Kukuluāe‘o and Kewalo, and possibly smaller portions of other ‘ili.

Ka‘ākaukukui means “the right (or north) light,” and it may have previously been a maritime navigation landmark. Pukui describes Ka‘ākaukukui as a “[f]illed-in reef.”

According to Kekahuna, Ka‘ākaukukui was “a beautiful sand beach that formerly extended along Ala Moana Park to Kewalo Basin, a quarter mile long reef extended along the shore” (from Punchbowl to Cooke Street.)

Kukuluāe‘o, translates literally as the “Hawaiian stilt (bird)”, “to walk on stilts.” Pukui describes the area as “formerly fronting Ke-walo Basin” and “containing marshes, salt ponds, and small fishponds,” an environment well suited for this type of bird.  Henry Kekahuna described it as an area where salt was formerly made.

Kewalo literally means “the calling (as an echo)” – it is the area between Cooke and Sheridan Streets. According to Pukui, “outcasts (kauwā) intended for sacrifice were drowned here”.  Kekahuna said that at one time, it also had a sand beach as a part of the area, where various sports, such as surfing, were held.

Kewalo once had a freshwater spring in the central portion (current location unknown), as recorded in the proverb “Ka wai huahua‘i o Kewalo,” which translates as “The bubbling water of Kewalo.”

In traditional times, the area was characterized by fishponds, salt ponds, trails connecting Honolulu (Kou) and Waikīkī, and occasional taro lo‘i.

The area was traditionally noted for their fishponds and salt pans, for the marsh lands where pili grass and other plants could be collected, for ceremonial sites such as Puʻukea Heiau, Kewalo Spring and Kawailumalumai Pond at which sacrifices were made, and for their trails that allowed transport between the more populated areas of Waikīkī and Honolulu.

Important chiefs such as Huanui-ka-la-la‘ila‘i were born in the area and conducted religious rites, and commoners traveled to the area to procure food and other resources; some commoners probably also lived in the area, possibly adjacent to the ponds and the trails.

Kakaʻako is also associated with legendary accounts of the Waters of Haʻo, Kapoi and the heiau, and the legend of Hiʻiaka and more.

In 1911, it was estimated that about one-third of the coastal plain at Kakaʻako was a wetland.  Hawaiians used the lagoonal/estuary environment of the Honolulu plain to construct fishponds.

In the post-Western Contact period, when the fishponds were no longer used, they were more often than not filled with material dredged from the ocean or hauled from nearby areas, garbage and general material from other sources. These reclaimed areas provided valuable new land near the heart of growing urban Honolulu.

Shortly after the turn of the century, Kakaʻako was a community of small stores, churches, schools, parks and clusters of residences in ethnic “camps” or neighborhoods.  It has undergone lots of changes over the past century.

As late as 1940, Kaka‘ako’s population numbered more than 5,000 residents. But after World War II, community buildings, wood-frame camp houses, language schools, temples and churches were removed to make way for auto-body repair shops, warehouses and other small industrial businesses.

Few traces of its former residential existence remain. In the early 1950s, rezoning led to the conversion of the primarily residential and small business district into an urban industrial area.

Decades after the transition from residential to industrial, Kaka‘ako is now slated for redevelopment. Plans call for the re-establishment of a mixed residential and business community - although recent development and present plans include several high-rise developments.

It looks like the residential use is destined to return.  As noted in a recent Star-Advertiser piece, resident growth in Kakaʻako is expected to more than triple, from 10,400 to 37,300, by 2035; the prediction was based on "the general consensus that Kakaʻako is ripe for development."

Lots of information here is from reports from Cultural Surveys.  The image shows an illustration of the region in 1854.  In addition, I have added other images and maps of this area in a folder of like name in the Photos section on my Facebook page.

© 2012 Hoʻokuleana LLC

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Keʻanae, Maui

“Wai o ke ola! Wai, waiwai nui! Wai, nā mea a pau, ka wai, waiwai no kēlā!”  (Water is life! Water is of great value! Water, the water is that which is of value for all things!) (Joe Rosa, in Maly)

If you are going to tell a story about Keanae, in Koʻolau on the coast of Maui, the story starts with water, and with it, the life of the land.

From ancient times, the abundant rains, supported the development of rich forests; the rains and forests have in turn led to the formation of hundreds of streams (kahawai) that have molded the landscape of Maui into one with many large valleys (awāwa) and smaller gulches (kahawai).  (Maly)

These watered valleys and gulches, and their associated flat lands (kula), have been home to and have sustained native Hawaiian families for centuries.

Handy, Handy & Pukui report that there were several major population centers on the Island of Maui: Kahakuloa (West Maui) region; the deep watered valleys of Nā Wai ‘Ehā (Waihe‘e, Wai‘ehu, Wailuku and Waikapū); the ‘Olowalu to Honokōhau region of Lāhainā; the Kula - ‘Ulupalakua region and the Koʻolau - Hana region.

They note the importance of the Ko‘olau region in this discussion:
“On the northeast flank of the great volcanic dome of Haleakala…the two adjacent areas of Ke‘anae and Wailua-nui comprise the fourth of the main Maui centers and the chief center on this rugged eastern coast. It supported intensive and extensive wet-taro cultivation. Further eastward and southward along this windward coast line is the district of Hana… [Handy, Handy and Pukui.]” (Maly)

Settlement in the watered valleys along the Koʻolau coast consisted primarily of permanent residences near the shore and spread along the valley floors.  Residences also extended inland on flat lands and plateaus, with temporary shelters in the upper valleys.

Two primary forms of agricultural sites occur in these river valleys: lo‘i kalo (irrigated and drainage taro farming field systems) on the valley floors and slopes; and the kula and kīhāpai dry land farming plots where crops such as ‘uala (sweet potatoes), kō (sugar canes), kalo (taro), mai‘a (bananas and plantains) and wauke (paper mulberry.)

Handy, Handy and Pukui further that “…Ke‘anae lies just beyond Honomanu Valley. This is a unique wet-taro growing ahupua‘a… It was here that the early inhabitants settled, planting upland rain-watered taro far up into the forested area. In the lower part of the valley, which is covered mostly by grass now, an area of irrigated taro was developed on the east side. A much larger area in the remainder of the valley could have been so developed. However, we could find no evidence of terracing there. This probably was due to the fact that the energies of the people were diverted to create the lo‘i complex which now covers the peninsula.”  (Maly)

Anciently, the peninsula was barren lava. But a chief, whose name is not remembered, was constantly at war with the people of neighboring Wailua and was determined that he must have more good land under cultivation, more food, and more people. So he set all his people to work (they were then living within the valley and going down to the peninsula only for fishing,) carrying soil in baskets from the valley down to the lava point. (Maly)

The soil and the banks enclosing the patches were thus, in the course of many years, all transported and packed into place. Thus did the watered flats of Keʻanae originate. A small lo‘i near the western side of the land formerly belonged to the chief of Keʻanae and has the name Ke-‘anae (the Big Mullet); it is said that the entire locality took its name from this small sacred lo‘i. Here, as at Kahakuloa, the taro that grew in the sacred patch of the aliʻi was reputed to be of great size. (Maly)

This area was nearly completely destroyed by a tsunami in 1946 (April 1.)  Reportedly, the only building said to have been left standing was the Lanakila ʻIhiʻihi O Iehova o na Kaua (now called the Keʻanae Congressional Church.)

In 2005, the DOE announced the closure of the last one-room school in the state of Hawaiʻi (in Keʻanae,) just a few weeks before the school year began. The village of Keʻanae had its own school for 96 years.

Since then, Keʻanae students have made the 16-mile, one-way trek to Hana School.  Reportedly, a Keʻanae Charter School has been proposed by community members.  Last year, the non -profit group Ka Waianu o Hāloa launched a fund-raising effort in support of the establishment of a charter school in Keʻanae.

Today, Keʻanae continues to be a relatively isolated, but significant taro-growing community; it is one of the major commercial wetland taro farming regions in the state.

Keʻanae residents reportedly use the terms "inside" and "outside" to express the difference between life in their rural heartland and the new world of towns and cities where most Hawaiians live today.

Keʻanae lies on the windward coast of Maui, about a two-hour drive over the narrow, winding Hana Highway.  Heading toward Hana leads you further to the “inside,” heading towards Kahului is taking you “outside.”

While at DLNR, I was involved through the Land Board and the Water Commission (both of which I chaired) on several issues related to Keʻanae – all focused on historic stream diversions and the impacts to downstream users, particularly the taro farmers there.

The Land Board authorized the release of an additional 6-million gallons per day for downstream uses, as well as appointment of a monitor to determine that this amount will meet the needs of the downstream farmers, as well as monitor other aspects of the decision.

The image shows Keʻanae point.  In addition, I have added other images of Keʻanae in a folder of like name in the Photos section on my Facebook page.

© 2012 Hoʻokuleana LLC

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Lua Na Moku ʻIliahi - Sandalwood Pit

Sandalwood (ʻiliahi) has been highly prized and in great demand through the ages; its use for incense is part of the ritual of Buddhism.  Chinese used the fragrant heart wood for incense, medicinal purposes, for architectural details and carved objects.

Sandalwood was first recognized as a commercial product in Hawai‘i in 1791 by Captain Kendrick of the Lady Washington, when he instructed sailors to collect cargo of sandalwood.  From that point on, it became a source of wealth in the islands, until its supply was ultimately exhausted.

Trade in Hawaiian sandalwood began as early as the 1790s; by 1805 it had become an important export item.  As the value of sandalwood increased, the Hawaiian Islands emerged as a major source of heartwood sandalwood. Hawai‘i soon became known as “Tahn Heung Sahn” (the sandalwood mountains.)

Sandalwood trade was a turning point in Hawai‘i, especially related to its economic structure.  It moved Hawai‘i from a self-sufficient economy to a commercial economy.  This started a series of other economic and export activities across the islands.

In 1811, an agreement between Boston ship captains and Kamehameha I established a monopoly on sandalwood exports, with Kamehameha receiving 25% of the profits.  As trade and shipping brought Hawaiʻi into contact with a wider world, it also enabled the acquisition of Western goods, including arms and ammunition.

Between about 1810 and 1820, the major item of Hawaiian trade was sandalwood.  Kamehameha I rigidly maintained control of the trade until his death in 1819, at which time his son, Liholiho, took over control.

In order to measure how much sandalwood to harvest and move down the mountain, they dug “Lua Na Moku ‘Iliahi” (sandalwood measuring pits) in the forest.

The pits were used to measure an amount of sandalwood that would fit in a ship’s hold.  The wood was cut and placed in the pit.  When the pit was filled, the logs were carried down the mountain to a waiting ship.

Because of the lack of roads and vehicles the wood was carried down in the form of logs, 3 to 6 feet long, and from 2 to 18 inches in diameter, after the bark and sapwood had been chipped off with adzes.

Large numbers of people were involved in the harvesting and handling of the sandalwood.  As noted by Eillis in 1823, “Before daylight on the 22d we were roused by vast multitudes of people passing through the district from Waimea with sandal wood, which had been cut in the adjacent mountains for Karaimoku (Kalanimoku,) by the people of Waimea, and which the people of Kohala, as far as the north point, had been ordered to bring down to his storehouse on the beach, for the purpose of its being shipped to Oahu.”

“There were between two and three thousand men, carrying each from one to six pieces of sandal wood, according to their size and weight.  It was generally tied on their backs by bands made of ti leaves, passed over the shoulders and under the arms, and fastened across their breast.  When they had deposited the wood at the storehouse, they departed to their respective homes.” (William Ellis 1823)

The standard unit of measure was a picul, approximately 133 pounds (a shoulder-load,) the maximum weight a man could easily carry on his back.  The price fluctuated from $3.00 to $18.00 a picul.

While, reportedly, Lua Na Moku ʻIliahi were dug in forests throughout the islands, only a couple are reported to remain.

One such site was dug in the early 1800s and is located at Kamiloloa, adjacent to the Maunahui Forest Reserve on Moloka‘i, Hawai‘i.  The Maunahui Road (Molokaʻi Forest Reserve Road) leads into and through the Molokaʻi Forest Reserve.

Reportedly, another is at about the 800-foot elevation on the Kapālama-Nu‘uanu ridge near the Kapālama campus of Kamehameha Schools on Oʻahu.

During Kamehameha I’s reign, all lands, and with this all ʻiliahi, in Hawaiʻi were under his control. This meant he held a monopoly, or complete control, on the ‘iliahi supply. He placed a kapu on the trees and forbid the cutting of young trees. This assured a steady supply of ‘iliahi for years to come.

Between 1810 and 1820, sandalwood sold for about $125/ton, generating more than $3 million.  By 1821, sandalwood exports totaled about 1,400 tons annually. The peak years of the sandalwood trade were from 1810 to 1840, a time that also saw a steadily increasing desire for Western goods in the Islands.

The death of Kamehameha I, in May 1819, ended the peace, prosperity and monopoly of the sandalwood trade … and the kapu.  Under Liholiho, the controls on harvesting were ended.  In their rush to collect wood, the chiefs ordered even young trees to be cut down.

To obtain sandalwood for the China trade, American merchants were willing to extend enormous amounts of credit to Liholiho and the chiefs.

While King Kamehameha I had always paid cash for purchases, the succeeding chiefs and Ali‘i purchased western goods on credit payable in sandalwood, a resource that was dwindling while the national debt was escalating.  In 1821, JC Jones, the American Trade Consul, reported that the native debt had risen to $300,000.

Soon there was little ‘iliahi worth gathering in Hawaii.  As the supply dwindled the trading of ‘iliahi came to an end.

The image is from Kamehameha Schools Press and shows the stacking of the cut sandalwood in the Lua Na Moku ‘Iliahi; in addition to these images, I have included others on Lua Na Moku ‘Iliahi in a folder of like name in the Photos section on my Facebook page.

© 2012 Hoʻokuleana LLC

Friday, November 16, 2012

King Kalākaua

David Laʻamea Kamanakapuʻu Mahinulani Nalaiaehuokalani Lumialani Kalākaua was born in Honolulu to High Chief Kahana Kapaʻakea and the High Chiefess Analea Keohokālole, on November 16, 1836.

Per the custom of the times, he was hānai (adopted) by the chiefess Haʻaheo Kaniu, who took him to Maui, where the court of King Kamehameha III was located. When Kalākaua was four, he returned to Oʻahu to begin his education at the Royal School.

There, he became fluent in English and the Hawaiian language.  At 16, he began studying law (although his obligations and positions he held prevented him from fully completing his legal training.)

By 1856, Kalākaua was on the staff of King Kamehameha IV.  In addition to his military duties, Kalākaua served in the Department of the Interior; in 1863, he was appointed postmaster general.

In December 1872, King Kamehameha V died without designating an heir and per the law, an election was held to determine his successor.   Kalākaua made his first bid for Hawaiʻi’s throne in 1873.

The kingdom’s Constitution stated if the monarch dies before naming a successor “such vacancy, shall cause a meeting of the Legislative Assembly, who shall elect by ballot some native Alii of the Kingdom as Successor”.

They were presented with two choices: Kalākaua, who ran on a campaign slogan of “Hawaii for Hawaiians” and William C. Lunalilo.

Lunalilo won; but he died a year later, leaving no successor. On February 12, 1874, nine days after the passing of King Lunalilo, an election was held between the repeat candidate David Kalākaua and Queen Emma - widow of King Kamehameha IV.  Kalākaua won.

The triumphant Kalākaua toured the islands, stopping in every district to affirm his primary goals. "To the planters, he affirmed that his primary goal was the advance of commerce and agriculture, and that he was about to go in person to the United States to push for a reciprocity treaty. To his own people, he promised renewal of Hawaiian culture and the restoration of their franchise." (Tabrah)

The Treaty of Reciprocity-1875 between the US and the Kingdom of Hawai‘i eliminated the major trade barrier to Hawai‘i’s closest and major market.  Through the treaty, the US gained Pearl Harbor and Hawai‘i’s sugar (and other) planters received duty-free entry into US markets.

Under Kalākaua's direction, the cornerstone for ʻIolani Palace was laid on December 31, 1879.  Construction was completed in 1882; in December of that year Kalākaua moved into his palace with his wife, Queen Kapi'olani, the granddaughter of King Kaumuali'i of Kauaʻi.

Kalākaua was the first Hawaiʻi sovereign to visit the United States, as well as circumnavigate the globe (he did that twice.)   His travels were to study the matter of immigration and to improve foreign relations. He also wanted to study how other rulers ruled.

He sought closer ties with Japan, and in 1883, Kapena (selected for the diplomatic mission to Japan) delivered a speech in Tokyo in which he declared that "His Majesty [Kalākaua] believes that the Japanese and Hawaiian spring from one cognate race and this enhances his love for you."  (Kuykendall)

" ... Hawaii holds out her loving hand and heart to Japan and desires that your people may come and cast in their lots with ours and repeople our Island Home with a race which may blend with ours and produce a new and vigorous nation."  (Kuykendall)

Kalākaua had a passion for music, dancing, parties and the finest food and drinks and he lived up to the title of Merrie Monarch (a reference some suggest is linked to the nickname given to Charles II of England, who ruled (and partied) in the mid-1600s.)

His friend, Robert Louis Stevenson described Kalākaua as "a cultured intellectual of unusual mental powers." A poet and lyricist, athlete and consummate politician, he was responsible for initiating the resurgence of Hawaiian cultural arts, particularly hula.

Kalākaua was a staunch supporter of native Hawaiian civil rights.  In part, this led to a rebellion in 1887 forcing him to sign a new constitution relinquishing his powers as head of state and relegated him to a figurehead; it also imposed a fairly high property ownership qualification on those running for the new legislature.  This new constitution became known as the Bayonet Constitution.

Two years later, Kalākaua retired to Waikīkī.  His health began to fail by 1890 and under the advice of his physician he traveled to San Francisco, where he was given a warm welcome. "A title was a title, and (the Americans) enjoyed him as a personality." (Tabrah))

He died on January 20, 1891, at the age 54, at the Palace Hotel in San Francisco.  Kalākaua, Hawaiʻi’s last King, is said to have uttered his last words: "Tell my people I tried."

Because he and his wife Queen Kapiʻolani did not have any children, his sister, Liliʻuokalani succeeded him to the Hawaiian throne.   (Kalākaua was known as a Renaissance Man and into technology - those are the subjects of future stories.)  I have added other images of Kalākaua in a folder of like name in the Photos section on my Facebook page.

© 2012 Hoʻokuleana LLC

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Lēʻahi Hospital

In the early-1900s, tuberculosis was called “consumption” or “black lung disease;” at that time, a tuberculosis outbreak hit Honolulu.

The "destitute and incurables" were transported to Kakaʻako for a while until a new place could be found.  A temporary hospital, Victoria Hospital (also known as "home for incurables" and the "old kerosene warehouse,") was set up on Queen and South streets.

Victoria Hospital (named in commemoration of Queen Victoria's Diamond Jubilee in 1897) had the responsibility to receive as in-patients "persons suffering from consumption or other so-called incurable diseases excepting leprosy."

Shortly thereafter, Victoria Hospital was renamed the ‘Honolulu Home for Incurables’ (with the establishment of the Territorial Government and new burst of Americanism, there was criticism over the "British-sounding" name of the hospital.)

However, a better and bigger hospital was needed to take care of the overflowing masses of people coming in, and people wanted it in a dry location.

Subscribers were solicited for a new hospital; Kaimuki was selected.  At about that time, Kaimuki was destined for growing development.

Gear, Lansing & Co. was proposing a 400-acre development with the intention “to divide the property into over 1,000 building lots, reserving suitable lands for parks, beer-gardens, hotels, churches, school-houses and saloons.  The suburb will at some future day become an important ward in Honolulu.”  ("A New Suburb," an article from The Independent (Honolulu, Territory of Hawaii) July 18, 1898))

Originally charted in 1901 as the Honolulu Home for Incurables, its name was changed to the “Lēʻahi Home” in 1906.  In 1942 the word “Hospital” was substituted for the word “Home.”

From 1900 to 1909 Dr. Archibald Neil Sinclair was city physician of Honolulu and from 1900 to 1919 was also associated with the United States Public Health Service as acting assistant surgeon.

Sinclair was made a director of Lēʻahi Home in 1900, and from 1911 to 1916 was physician in charge of the tuberculosis bureau and bacteriological department of the Territorial Board of Health.

By September 1902, the buildings that became Lēʻahi Hospital contained an administration building and four wards on a six acre site.

In the 1940s, Lēʻahi Hospital grew from a four ward building into a modern hospital.  It served as the safeguard of the tuberculosis control in the Territory of Hawai‘i.

It initially took patients with all types of chronic and incurable diseases, then in the early 1950s began accepting only diagnosed and suspected cases of tuberculosis.

The hospital has been expanded and modernized over the years with skilled nursing, rehabilitative services and outpatient services, including an adult day health program, geriatric clinic and elder-law counseling for elderly residents in the community.

Lēʻahi Hospital transitioned to providing nursing home and adult day health services, in addition to continuing the provision of institutional tuberculosis care.

The facility is located on Kilauea Avenue, across from the Kapiʻolani Community College.

Lēʻahi is one of 12 public health facilities managed by the Hawaii Health Systems Corporation, a semi-autonomous state agency that administers twelve State hospitals.

The image shows Lēʻahi Hospital in 1904 (star-bulletin;) in addition, I had added some other related images and maps in a folder of like name in the Photos section on my Facebook page.

© 2012 Hoʻokuleana LLC