The First Motorcycle in Hawaii

Today in history–February 15, 1901–the motorcycle debuted in Hawaii. Mr. Whitman, manager of the Tribune bicycle agency, took the very first spin around downtown Honolulu and Waikiki. Read about the first motorcycle ride in Hawaii in “First Motorcycles in Hawaii.”

First Motorcycles in Hawaii
https://hdnpblog.wordpress.com/historical-articles/first-motorcycles-in-hawaii/


First Comics in Hawaii Newspapers

Today in history–January 30, 1904–the first comic strips in Hawaii debuted in the Evening Bulletin.

In color, the first comics consisted of seven multi-panel strips of comedic cartoons, such as the following:

Earlier comics appeared in North American newspapers in the late 1800s.

Probably due to the lack of interest, the Evening Bulletin eventually stopped publishing comics. However, comic strips would eventually reappear in Hawaii’s newspapers, such as the Honolulu Star-Advertiser today.

The First Comic Strips

Evening bulletin, Jan. 30, 1904, Image 9
http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn82016413/1904-01-30/ed-1/seq-9/
http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn82016413/1904-01-30/ed-1/seq-10/
http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn82016413/1904-01-30/ed-1/seq-11/
http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn82016413/1904-01-30/ed-1/seq-12/

Search Strategy
After the Evening Bulletin’s January 30, 1904, the comic strips appeared every other Saturday.

Duke Paoa Kahanamoku Died

Today in history — January 22, 1890 — Duke Paoa Kahinu Mokoe Hulikohola Kahanamoku died. He was a five-time Olympic medalist in swimming and surfer who made surfing popular on the U.S. Mainland.

Read more about him in “Duke Kahanamoku.”

Duke Kahanamoku
https://hdnpblog.wordpress.com/historical-articles/duke-kahanamoku-in-u-s-newspapers/


Gas Lights Up Hawaii for the First Time

Today in history–November 2, 1858–Hawaii’s first gas lights lit up a billiard saloon in downtown Honolulu for the first time. The Polynesian noted the gas light’s benefits over previous lighting technology:

“The preference of gas light over every other artificial light consists not only in its greater convenience, purity and brilliancy, but also in this, that its use greatly diminishes the risk of losses by fire and thus has a great influence on the insurance of buildings.”

Read more about it in “Hawaii’s First Gas Lights.”

Hawaii’s First Gas Lights
https://hdnpblog.wordpress.com/historical-articles/hawaiis-first-gas-light/


Hawaii’s First Cars

Today in history–October 8, 1899–people in Honolulu saw cars whizzing past them for the first time. Henry P. Baldwin and Edward D. Tenney drove around their “wagons” without horses!  Austin’s Hawaiian Weekly predicted that the word “automobile” may become a household word. Read more about it in “Hawaii’s First Automobile.”

Hawaii’s First Automobile
https://hdnpblog.wordpress.com/historical-articles/hawaiis-first-automobiles/


Alexandar Joy Cartwright Jr.’s Legacy in Hawaii

Today in history — July 12, 1892 — Known as the inventor of modern baseball, Alexandar Joy Cartwright Jr. passed away in Hawaii, where he lived during the second half of his life.

While people have recently questioned Cartwright’s role as the inventor, he definitely spread modern baseball throughout Hawaii. As his two youngest sons, Bruce and Allie, attended Punahou School (then Oahu College) from 1864 to 1869, the school also popularized modern baseball in Hawaii. In fact, Allie played baseball with his classmate Lorrin A. Thurston–decades before he led the overthrow of the Hawaiian Monarchy.

As a friend to Hawaiian royalty, Cartwright served in political posts. He founded the Honolulu Fire Department and managed it as chief for years. As the Consul of Peru, Cartwright assisted Peruvian merchants in Honolulu. Cartwright also served as executee and trustee of royal wills including Princess Likelike’s (Princess Kaiulani’s mother) and Queen Emma Rooke’s.

Cartwright’s legacy still lives on today. People still play ball on Makiki Field, now known as Cartwright Field. Each year, the Hawaii state high school baseball champions receive the Cartwright Cup. And Cartwright’s descendants still live in Hawaii.

Read about Cartwright’s legacy in “A Great Loss.”

“A Great Loss”
The Daily bulletin, July 13, 1892, Image 4
http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn82016412/1892-07-13/ed-1/seq-4/


Civil Beat Featured Chronicling America in Reporting HECo’s History

Iolani Palace lit up

Honolulu Civil Beat used Chronicling America to illustrate Hawaiian Electric Co.’s history in a special report “How One Company Turned ‘Darkness Into Day:'”

On a long-ago summer night, thousands of people gathered on the grounds of Iolani Palace for what might be described as an illuminating tea party with David Kalakaua, Hawaii’s last ruling king.

There was tea, coffee, ice cream, Hawaiian music, dance and high society in fine evening wear. But the real draw on the evening of July 21, 1886, was the simple spectacle of electric light that few locals had ever seen.

The 49-year-old king, who was fascinated by the potential of electricity, was something of an early adopter who had promised to bring electric light to Hawaii. Even the White House wouldn’t have electric lights for years after Iolani Palace, in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, was electrified.

In 1881, during a trip around the world, Kalakaua had dropped in on Thomas Edison’s “invention factory,” a laboratory in New Jersey, to see if he could find a way to brighten Hawaii’s future. It was less than two years after the inventor had come up with the incandescent light bulb.

As night fell on that July evening in 1886, a small steam engine located in the Honolulu Iron Works on Merchant Street successfully powered up cables that led to five lamps outside the palace. During the course of the night, the light around Palace Square drew a gawking crowd that the Honolulu Daily Bulletin put at more than 5,000. That amounted to one in every six people on the island.

It was, according to another news report in the Pacific Commercial Advertiser, a “soft but brilliant light which turned darkness into day.”

Soon, the newspaper said, the Royal Hawaiian military band began playing, soldiers marched on the grounds and a tea party for children got underway, hosted by Princess Liliuokalani and Princess Likelike.

“The Palace was brightly illuminated, and the large crowd moving among the trees and tents made a pretty picture.”

A nonprofit online news source, Civil Beat is currently publishing “Electric Dreams,” a special report series:

For the past 125 years, Hawaiian Electric Co. has helped shape Hawaii’s development, its politics and its culture. We explore its past to see what we can learn about its future.

Civil Beat Article: How One Company Turned ‘Darkness Into Day’
http://www.civilbeat.org/2016/07/how-one-company-turned-darkness-into-day/

Hawaii’s First Electric Lights
https://hdnpblog.wordpress.com/…/hawaiis-first-electric-li…/

Electric Light (second column from left, bottom)
The Daily bulletin, July 22, 1886, Image 3
http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/…/…/1886-07-22/ed-1/seq-3/

Kalakaua Visits Edison: The King in Search of a Means to Light Up Honolulu (column on the extreme right)
The sun, September 26, 1881, Image 1
http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn83030272/1881-09-26/ed-1/seq-1/

Points in Hawaiian History (second column from left, middle)
The Daily bulletin, September 30, 1887, Image 3
http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn82016412/1887-09-30/ed-1/seq-3/

Honolulu Electric Works: Starting of the Machinery (third column from left, top)
The Daily bulletin, March 21, 1888, Image 3
http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn82016412/1888-03-21/ed-1/seq-3/