The Annexation of Hawaii

Today in history — July 14, 1898 — the United States of America claimed Hawaii as its own. Pro-annexationists celebrated and raised the American flag. Royalists mourned Hawaii’s colonization, and Native Hawaiians previously protested through a petition.

Read more about it in “ANNEXATION!: HERE TO STAY!”

Note: This article does not represent HDNP’s views.

“ANNEXATION!: HERE TO STAY!”
Pacific commercial advertiser, July 14, 1898, Image 1
http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn85047084/1898-07-14/ed-1/seq-1/

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Pau Hana for Hawaii’s Sugar King

This week in history  — December 26, 1908 — Hawaii’s “sugar king,” Claus Spreckels, died after a brief illness. As one of the ten richest Americans, Spreckels dominated the sugar industries on the U.S. West Coast and in Hawaii from mid-1800s until his death. In Hawaii, he owned a plantation town, Spreckelsville, Maui; and incorporated Hawaiian Commercial and Sugar Company (HC&S).

Today, the name “Matson” is synonymous with Hawaii’s shipping industry–a lifeline for the world’s most isolated population center. In its early years, Spreckels financed William Matson’s ships for his new shipping company.

Spreckels gave loans and bribes to King Kalakaua and cabinet members. In return, Spreckels got land and water rights. The water rights for the Northeast Maui streams included complete ownership and control over the water. He irrigated the water to Spreckelsville plantation.

Read more about the “sugar king” in “Hardy Pioneer and Benefactor of State Died.”

“Hardy Pioneer and Benefactor of State Died”
The San Francisco call, Dec. 27, 1908, Page 18
http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn85066387/1908-12-27/ed-1/seq-18/


A Gift from Abraham Lincoln

Rev. James Kekela got a watch and chain from President Abraham Lincoln for saving an American citizen from being eaten by cannibals. Read more about it in “Lincoln’s Gift to a Honolululan.”

Pacific commercial advertiser, January 15, 1901, Page 6
http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn85047084/1901-01-15/ed-1/seq-6/


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/


A New Age in Hawaii Journalism: The Pacific Commercial Advertiser

Today in history — July 2, 1856 — marks the birth of the future Honolulu Advertiser: The Pacific Commercial Advertiser. The first issue reported the wedding of King Kamehameha IV and Emma Rooke.

Editor Henry Martyn Whitney, son of a missionary, founded the English-language newspaper as an “American newspaper” and alternative to the monarchy-run Polynesian. In the first issue, he said,

“Thank heaven, the day at length has dawned when the Hawaiian Nation can boast a free press, untrammelled by government patronage or party pledges, unbiased by ministerial frowns or favors–a press whose aim shall be the advancement of the nation in its commercial, political and social condition.”

During the whale industry’s peak, whalemen read the PCA when they sailed to Hawaii for rest and provisions.

As a former newsman at the New-York Commercial Advertiser, Whitney used that as a model to develop the PCA. Whitney was the first in Honolulu to meet ships off port in a boat to pick up foreign newspapers, as was often done in New York.

Read about the beginning of the PCA and the Honolulu Advertiser in “The Pacific Commercial Advertiser” and the PCA’s history.

“The Pacific Commercial Advertiser”
Pacific commercial advertiser, July 2, 1856, Image 2
http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn82015418/1856-07-02/ed-1/seq-2/

History of The Pacific Commercial Advertiser
http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn82015418/


Octopus fishing and more described by Emma Metcalf Beckley, 1902. — nupepa

HOW NATIVES ONCE FISHED Women Got the Octopus With Spears. The Hawaiians have five methods of fishing: by spearing, hand catching, baskets, hook and line, and with nets. The Ia O is the spearing of fish and is of two kinds, below and above water. That below water is the most important, and is generally […]

“How Natives Once Fished”
Pacific commercial advertiser, December 23, 1902, Page 5
http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn85047084/1902-12-23/ed-1/seq-5/

via Octopus fishing and more described by Emma Metcalf Beckley, 1902. — nupepa