January 17, 1893: Overthrow of the Kingdom of Hawaiʻi
The overthrow of Hawaiʻi’s last reigning monarch, Lydia Lili‘u Loloku Walania Wewehi Kamaka‘eha, took place 126 years ago on January 17, 1893. Queen Liliʻuokalani’s motto was tied to the Hawaiian word, ʻonipaʻa, which means, “Fixed, immovable, motionless, steadfast, established, firm, resolute, determined.”
In her book, Hawaii’s Story by Hawaii’s Queen, Liliʻuokalani wrote:
He will keep His promise, and will listen to the voices of His Hawaiian children lamenting for their homes. It is for them that I would give the last drop of my blood; it is for them that I would spend, nay, am spending, everything belonging to me.
Aloha kākou! Please be advised of the following upcoming event, “Aloha ʻĀina Ma Uka to Ma Kai, Rally at the Capitol.” According to event coordinators, “In conjunction with Kuʻi 2019, Hawaiian cultural practitioners, protectors of Ka Pae ‘Āina o Hawai’i, farmers, fisherman, musicians, students and scholars will be rallying at the Hawai’i State Capitol to raise awareness and provide education on the need to protect our Hawaiian cultural and natural resources, sacred places (like Mauna Kea), and public lands for future generations.” For UH Mānoa students, a shuttle will be provided. Please see the flyer below for more information.
January 8, 1839: Letter from Kauikeaouli to John C. Jones
John Coffin Jones Jr., also known as Aluli, was the appointed U.S. Agent for Commerce and Seaman in Hawaiʻi since 1820. Jones was often involved in contentious business matters, but towards the latter part of the 1830s, his personal life became a matter of notoriety and public spectacle. As the letter authored by Kauikeaouli below indicates, Jones was removed from his long-term position on grounds of bigamy.
Jones first married Hannah Jones Davis, widow of his partner, William Heath Davis Sr., in 1823. Apparently, Jones continued to live with Hannah, but also lived with Lahilahi Marin, the daughter of Don Francisco Marin. He purportedly had children with both women. In 1838, while in California, Jones married Manuela Carrillo and deserted Hannah and Lahilahi. Upon his return to Honolulu, Jones introduced Manuela as his wife. Thereafter, Hannah petitioned the Hawaiian Government for a divorce on grounds of bigamy.
In the previous blog post, John Papa ʻĪʻī wrote a letter to Captain Grimes about Aluli (Jones) and his wife. A few days later, this letter was written by Kauikeaouli. A transcript of this letter is provided below.
Oʻahu residents might recognize the name Bachelot from the road that intersects with Kuakini Medical Center. Not many realize, however, that the name is directly tied to a nineteenth century incident that resulted in French and British naval warships imposing a blockade on Honolulu harbor.
In a letter authored by F. Giraeid (partially obscured) dated January 3, 1832, it discloses a conversation with Bachelot regarding the care of his houses. A portion of this letter is provided below, followed by a transcription.
January 3, 1839: Letter from John Papa ʻĪʻī to Captain Grimes
In a previous blog post, we celebrated Justice John Papa ʻĪʻī’s birth. ʻĪʻī first served in the household of Kamehameha I as an attendant in 1810. He later went on to become a prominent member of the Privy Council and the House of Nobles. He also served as superintendent of schools on Oʻahu, and treasurer for the Kingdom. On January 15, 1848, ʻĪʻī was named the second associate justice of the Hawaiʻi Superior Court. He then served as second associate justice of the Hawaiʻi Supreme Court from December 6, 1852 – February 16, 1864.
In a letter authored by ʻĪʻī below dated January 3, 1839, he questions Captain Grimes about certain statements that Grimes purportedly made to Aluli (John Coffin Jones Jr.). A transcription of this short letter is provided below, followed by a translation completed by the Hawaiʻi State Archives.
In a previous post, we discussed Boki (Kamāʻuleʻule), a noted chief during the reigns of both King Kamehameha I and Kauikeaouli (Kamehameha II). Boki was frequently involved with various mercantile and shipping business ventures. Prior to his departure on the ill-fated voyage in 1829 that claimed more than four hundred lives, Boki had “fitted out and dispatched the brigs Ainoa [known as Ennore by foreigners] and Kamehameha to Manilla and Canton in charge of the chief Manuia. Among the articles sent to the Chinese market in this venture were about a thousand seal skins and five or six hundred piculs of sandalwood.” Thirty-Seventh Annual Report of the Hawaiian Historical Society for the Year 1928 20 (1929) (available online).
While in Canton, the brig Ennore was sold at auction on January 1, 1829. Below is an excerpt from the account sheet describing the transaction.
Aloha and greetings from the University of Wollongong in Australia. I am here to present at the 37th Annual Conference of the Australian and New Zealand Law and History Society. As an invited guest, I would first like to extend my appreciation to the Dharawal nation and Wodi Wodi people—the original inhabitants of this land. Indigenous sovereignty was never ceded and I pay my respect to their elders, past, present and emerging.
The conference was entitled, “Exclusion, Confinement, Dispossession: Uneven Citizenship and Spaces of Sovereignty.” Audra Simpson provided the keynote, “Savage States: Settler Governance in an Age of Sorrow.” We also were blessed to have a plenary session entitled, “Dreaming Inside: The Black Wallaby Writers’ Creative Writing Program for Indigenous Prisoners.” It was an inspiring talk that allowed us to see how creative expression has been a powerful form of healing for aboriginal prisoners.
My conference paper, “Confinement in the Hawaiian Kingdom, Before and After Annexation: Understanding Incarceration Disparities Wrought by Injustice,” provided a demographic profile of the prison and asylum population during the Kingdom of Hawaiʻi, from approximately 1866–1902. By examining prison records, asylum records, original case files, and government reports, I attempt to answer the following questions. To what extent did Hawaiʻi’s prison and asylum population resemble the wider population of the Kingdom, and it what ways did it differ? What was the national origin of those inmates? What types of incarceration-specific characteristics do we see at various times in history? Were there any changes in Hawaiʻi’s incarcerated population subsequent to contemporary policy and legal changes that were implemented?
Prior to annexation, in comparison with the general population, Hawaiians were under-represented in both the prison and asylum populations. Indeed, Hawaiians only became over-represented at the turn of the century. My conference paper provided some possible explanations for these results.
Blawg postings will resume next week when I return from Australia. Mahalo for your support!
Below is an early proclamation known as “He Olelo No Ke Kanawai.” It is dated December 8, 1827 and contains five laws. Another proclamation was published on the same date—however, this version added a sixth law prohibiting adultery. Some historical context for the development of this law may perhaps be gleaned from Levi Chamberlain’s journal.
December 6, 1885: Regarding the Reciprocity Treaty
In 1875, Hawaiʻi signed a reciprocity treaty with the United States that allowed certain products, such as sugar, to be imported into the United States without a tariff. See Convention Between the United States and His Majesty the King of the Hawaiian Islands, art. IV, 19 Stat. 625 (1875) (see blog entry, ʻAukake 15: Kuʻikahi Pānaʻi Like) (reciprocity treaty available on Punawaiola: Treaties U.S. 1874-1875). It also prohibited the kingdom from granting similar privileges, or to permit the leasing of Hawaiian ports and harbors to other nations. On December 6, 1884, the reciprocity treaty was extended but the U.S. Senate added a controversial provision:
Article II. His Majesty the King of the Hawaiian Islands grants to the Government of the United States the exclusive right to enter the harbor of the Pearl River in the Island of Oahu, and to establish and maintain there a coaling and repair station for the use of vessels of the United States, and to that end the United States may improve the entrance to said harbor and do all other things needful to the purpose aforesaid.
November 30 – December 3, 1829:
Regarding Boki’s Expedition (Part 2)
As described in the previous post, Boki decided to embark on a sandalwood expedition to settle the chiefs’ debts. Preparations for two ships, the Kamehameha and the Keokoʻi (also known as Karemoku or Kalaimoku) commenced. The directions to the commander of the Keokoʻi were set forth in a letter signed by Boki and Kauikeaouli. It directed the ship to go to “certain islands” and “prevail on the inhabitants to Except[sic] of our protection by them taking the oath of alegiance[sic] and allowing our colours to be hoisted and for them to concider[sic] themselves under our protection . . . .” In short, this letter indicates that this was not a mere expedition—but rather a voyage of conquest.