November 16, 1836: Treaty with Britain (Māhele 1)
As described in the previous blog posting, Commander Edward Russell of the H.M.S. Actaeon secured an agreement at gunpoint which permitted British residents to settle on land obtained with the king’s consent. Below is the English text of this controversial treaty (available in Foreign Office & Executive: Chronological File, 1790 – 1849 1836 Nov n.d. 7, 16). In the following post, the Hawaiian language version of this treaty is provided.
Articles made and agreed on at Honolulu, Island of Oahu the 16th of November, 1836.
Article I. English Subjects shall be permitted to come with their vessels, and property of whatever kind, to the Sandwich Islands ; they shall also be permitted to reside therein, as long as they conform to the laws of these Islands, and to build houses, and warehouses for their merchandize, with the consent of the King, and good friendship shall continue between the subjects of both countries, Great Britain and the Sandwich Islands.
Article II. English subjects, resident at the Sandwich islands, are at liberty to go to their own country, or elsewhere, either in their own or any other vessel; they may dispose of their effects, enclosures, houses, &c., with the previous knowledge of the King, and take the value with them, without any impediment whatever. The land on which houses are built is the property of the King, but the King shall have no authority to destroy the houses, or in any way injure the property of any British subject.
Article II. When an English subject dies on the Sandwich Islands, his effects shall not be searched or touched by any of the Governors or Chiefs, but shall be delivered into the hands of his executors or heirs, if present; but if no heir or executor appear, the Consul or his agent shall be executor for the same; if any debts were owing to the deceased, the Governor of the place shall assist and do all in his power to compel the debtors to pay their debts to the heir or executor, or the Consul, in case no heir or executor appears, and the Consul is to inform the King of the death of every British subject leaving property upon the Sandwich Islands.
Captain of H.B.M.’s Ship Acteon.