In July of 1839, Captain Laplace of the French frigate L’Artémise, arrived in the islands under orders to put an end to the persecution of Catholics in the Hawaiian Kingdom. King Kauikeaouli issued the Edict of Toleration on July 17, 1839, and paid $20,000 as a guarantee of “his future conduct towards France.” Additionally, the treaty ensured the release of all imprisoned Catholics, and established the creation of a site for a Catholic Church. The church was required to be located in a port frequented by the French, and ministered by a French priest.
Below are excerpts from the 1839 treaty between the Kingdom of Hawaiʻi and France. A transcription of the Hawaiian language follows.
In 1824, King Liholiho and Queen Kamāmalu journeyed to London to negotiate an alliance with England. Almost the entire royal party developed measles within weeks of arrival. On July 14, 1824, King Liholiho, aged 27, succumbed to complications related to measles. Queen Kamāmalu, who was only 22, had died just a few days prior on July 8.
Below is the Report of Physicians, issued by Doctors Henry Holland and Hugh Ley. The sad report indicates that King Liholiho changed “materially for the worse” after the death of his beloved wife.
July 13, 1874: Amendments to the 1864 Constitution
On July 13, 1874, King Kalākaua approved two amendments to the 1864 Constitution. One of the major amendments related to the requirement that qualified voters possess real property valued at $150 or more. Besides the property requirement change, the amendments also included changes in punctuation (Hawaiian and English versions) and in wording (English version).
Below are copies of the Hawaiian amendments with an accompanying transcription:
Passed by Congress and signed into law by President Warren Harding on July 9, 1921 (42 Stat. 108), the Hawaiian Homes Commission Act is a government-sponsored homesteading program that provides for the rehabilitation of the native Hawaiian people. The term, “native Hawaiian” is defined as individuals having at least 50 percent Hawaiian blood.
Pursuant to provisions of the HHCA, the Department provides direct benefits to native Hawaiians in the form of 99-year homestead leases at an annual rental of $1. In 1990, the Legislature authorized the Department to extend leases for an aggregate term not to exceed 199 years (Act 305, Session Laws of Hawaii 1990; section 208, HHCA). Homestead leases are for residential, agricultural, or pastoral purposes. Aquacultural leases are also authorized, but none have been awarded to date. The intent of the homesteading program is to provide for economic self-sufficiency of native Hawaiians through the provision of land.
July 7, 1898: Newlands Resolution Annexing Hawaiʻi to the United States
On July 6, 1898, the U.S. Congress passed a joint resolution called the Newlands Resolution. On the following day, July 7, 1898, President McKinley signed the resolution and it became law. Below is the first page of the joint resolution:
Signed by King Kalākaua on July 6 and promulgated on July 7, 1887, this was the last constitution of the monarchy. It was popularly known as the “Bayonet Constitution.” Dr. Jon Osorio explains in his book, Dismembering Lāhui: A History of the Hawaiian Nation to 1887, that on July 6, “a small committee of haole individuals brought a hastily scripted constitution to the king and forced his signature.” This document “significantly altered the meaning of citizenship and nationhood in the kingdom.”
July 4, 1894: Constitution of the Republic of Hawaiʻi
On July 4, 1894, the Republic of Hawaiʻi’s first Constitution was promulgated. Article 23 specifically named Sanford B. Dole as the first President. He later became the Governor of Hawaiʻi after annexation. An image of the cover of the 1894 Constitution is below.
On July 2, 1881, Chief Justice Harris passed away. His work was honored by members of the Hawaiʻi Supreme Court bar on July 6, 1881 in a series of condolences. Justice Hartwell presented the following statement on behalf of a committee selected by the Bar to draft resolutions concerning Chief Justice Harris:
The Bar of the Supreme Court of the Hawaiian Islands being assembled at the office of the Attorney General of the Kingdom this 6th day of July, A.D. 1881, in respect for the memory of His Honor the late Chief Justice Charles C. Harris, do resolve : That, by the death of Chief Justice Harris, the interests of the Hawaiian Kingdom have sustained a great loss . . . [Moreover] That these resolves be presented in open Court, with the request that they be entered upon the records of the Supreme Court.”