Foreign Relations of the United States, 1894, Appendix II, Affairs in Hawaii
Statement of Charles T.
Col. J. H.
United States Commissioner, etc.:
Dear Sir: I send you by bearer a very hastily prepared sketch of some features of Hawaiian History with our present condition in view.
Time has not permitted of as careful an arrangement and comparison of facts and analysis of motives as I could have wished, but if the sketch assists in the most humble way in arriving at a true understanding of our situation, my object will be fully attained.
I have the honor to be, sir, your obedient servant,
a footnote to hawaiian history—may 8, 1893.
In order to arrive at anything like a true understanding of the present condition of affairs in our little Kingdom and the conflicting influences and interests to which may be attributed the unfortunate order of things now existing, it would seem necessary to take a brief glance at the last seventy years of the nation’s history with that object in view.
In the year 1820 a little band of Puritan missionaries, in number four, with their wives, landed on these shores, the ostensible object of their visit being to evangelize the heathen, or, in the words of a quotation frequently made by themselves from their principal text-book, to preach “glad tidings of good things.”
They seemed to wish it understood that they were actuated by a self-sacrificing charity and devotion rivaling, if not superior to, that of Paul and his associates and followers when he started out on a similar errand, and this view of the case does not seem so unreasonable when we take into condsideration the fact that our Puritan friends were taking their chances in what was to them a veritable terra incognita, while the first apostle, instead of pointing for Scythia with his momentous message, preferred to work the most brilliant centers of ancient civilization, where he would be much more likely to find people and conditions congenial to his cultivated tastes.
The worldly goods of the newcomers were few indeed, and their intellectual stock in trade was almost as beggarly, consisting for the most part in a number of trite quotations from the Puritan Bible, worn threadbare with constant and injudicious use. They were welcomed by a race of incomparable physique, open-hearted, generous, and hospitable to a fault, qualities which to the average New Englander (such, for instance, as were sent here with the Redeemer’s message seventy years ago), accustomed to the withering narrowness and penury of his native land, were as strange as a quadratic equation to a Hottentot. In fact, the newcomers were so overshadowed by the importance of their “message,” as well as themselves, that they had no time to throw away on the amenities of life which are so highly valued under conditions of our more advanced civilization, and not wholly despised by even barbarous people.
They found the Hawaiian in that state of mental evolution, which would have gladdened the heart of the earnest philosophical teacher.[Page 746]
He had already realized that he had outgrown the trammels of his idolatrous religion, and that the mysteries and mummeries of its priesthood were worse than folly, and had just returned from a gleeful dance around the bonfire of the trumpery connected with the superstitions of the past. He received the newcomers with open arms, in the simplicity of his heart, not doubting but that they would give him something better than what he had just thrown away that would satisfy, morally and mentally, the craving of his better nature.
Our Puritan friends were more fortunate than their brethren of the South Seas, where tradition would have us believe that missionary on toast was a favorite delicacy.
They had no war to wage against the Prince of Darkness, no settled evil notions and vices to combat, no idolatrous or pagan religion to overturn, no conquest to make conquering “foot by foot from barbarism,” as Gen. Armstrong would have us believe in his letter to the New York Independent, of May 30, 1889.
They found the door wide open. A pleasant expectant face and beckoning hand encouraged them to enter; they did not hesitate a moment, but dropping their manners outside with that exasperating brusqueness which they have taken fine care to hand down to their children’s children even to the present day, they bounced right in.
The simple islanders crowded around them, loaded them with presents, gave them lands of their own selection, built them houses and churches, furnished them with food, and besought them for instruction. The immense council houses of the chiefs were not large enough to hold the vast throngs which assembled to hear them relieve themselves from time to time of a portion of the “message;” consequently open air meetings were resorted to, the size of the audiences being limited only by the range of the speaker’s voice, and as the stomach and lungs of our friends were the best developed organs of their equipment, they sometimes spoke to immense gatherings.
The mental development which prompted the Hawaiian to destroy his wooden deities and relegate the priests to more useful enabled him to discover at a very early stage that something was lacking in the new teachers. To his disgust, he found that the veneering was very thin and that from his standpoint at least, in accepting the new doctrines and forms in place of those just cast aside, he was trading one set of mummeries for another without any perceptible gain or advantage. He found that the new teachers were not only human (which of course he expected, as the day when his grandfather had looked upon Capt. Cook as a deity had long gone by), but he found, also, that they were prompted by motives and guilty of actions which he and his race despised and was endeavoring to rise superior to.
His knowledge of the world, outside of his own people, being limited to the few visitors who had touched on his shores during the twenty or twenty five years preceding the advent of the newcomers, and the still fewer foreigners who had made their homes with him during that time, did not help him to determine where the difficulty lay, whether in the teachers, the doctrines taught, or in both, and he desired to see something of the outside world for himself.
The King and a strong delegation were accordingly sent to England. While there it was learned that there were other teachers equally capable or possibly better, and other religions more ancient and very likely more satisfying to the hungry soul than those he had so rashly taken to his bosom in 1820. These things could not be known without a trial, [Page 747]and accordingly an invitation was extended to the Catholcs to seal teachers, who in due course of time arrived at the islands.
Our Puritan friends had about ten years the start of their Catholic brothers in the race to deliver the “message” to the simple islander, during which time they had made good use of their opportunities. Notwithstanding this great advantage, they did not look with favor on the advent of their Catholic brethren. In the first place there was one quotation from their text-book peculiarly applicable to the present case (and they were nothing, if not strong on quotations), which was, “Thou shalt have no other Gods before me,” and then the Catholic brother had a little different version of the “message.” The encouragment which our Puritan friends had received at the start had made them aggressive, and they had, by successive steps, directed with more skill than has been shown by any of their descendants, secured the virtual control of the Government, which has, however, been continually denied by them all until the appearance of Armstrong’s letter in the Independent of the 30th May, 1889, referred to above. The Government at that time (about 1830) was a monarchy assisted by a council of Chiefs.
During the decade following 1830, the little original band of “message” bearers received very considerable additions to their ranks, all being recruited from the same uncompromising, intolerant stock from which the first were drafted, the recruits, with one or two exceptions, being of the $200–a year class of New England Parsons. They were never noted for individual aggressive courage, but numbers, as with (baser mortals), gave them assurance, and a taste of power sharpened their cupidity. The Catholic (or anyone, for that matter, outside their own pale) was an interloper who must be routed at all hazards. This they endeavored to do through the agency of the chiefs, while keeping themselves in the background, so that should odium or failure attend their efforts, they could disclaim any responsibility in the matter. Their machinations resulted in the disastrous occurrences of 1839, 1843, and 1848, the details of which can be gleaned from the newspapers and histories of those times, and are entirely in keeping with the recorded characteristics of the gentle Puritan from the first day that his dirty paw smudged the pages of European history.
They managed in a degree, hardly comprehensible at this date, to retain their hold on not only the chiefs but the common people, and their dictum was supreme in every sphere, social, moral, governmental, and even individual. As a consequence some of the most absurd regulations were promulgated, the ears and claws of a few still showing themselves in the Hawaiian statutes of to-day. The country was dotted all over with unnecessary churches, Kawaiahao among the number, built by the painful labor of the uncomplaining native to satisfy the wishes of his teachers and everything was subordinated to the one idea of religion as they taught it. The advantage of teaching their willing pupils any of the arts of civilization and at the same time instructing them how to avoid the pitfalls of the new order of things never seems to have entered their heads. The consequence was that as far back as 1840 there were graduates of Lahainaluna (the mission high school on Maui) who had passed creditable examinations in Conic sections, who had to don the maid and go into the taro patch if they desired to earn an honest living, not having been taught a single practical idea which would assist them in earning a living in a civilized way.
As a matter of fact such genuine benefactors of the Hawaiian race [Page 748]as Locke of Waialua, Oahu, Goodrich of Hilo, Whitney of Waimea, Kauai, and Shipman of Kau, Hawaii, who endeavored to teach the people of their respective districts to work as civilized men, with modern tools, and to improve their homes and take a civilized and intelligent care of their families, were frowned upon and denounced by the balance of their devout brethren for neglecting the all-important “message.” The unwavering loyalty of the people to their teachers, under the circumstances, speaks volumes for the constancy of the old-time Kanaka.
About the beginning of the decade commencing with 1840, the commercial interests of the country demanded a more formal government and governmental methods conforming in a measure to those of the nations with whom it was in communication. Persons capable of assisting in the work of reorganization were not plentiful and the chiefs naturally looked to their spiritual advisers for assistance, as they had been instructed from the beginning that there was nothing on the earth or in the heavens above or in the waters under the earth beyond their ken.
Again luck favored our Puritan friends. It would never do to have at appear that they sought secular employment and preferment. Equally impossible would it be for them to permit any except the Lord’s anointed to embrace such an opportunity. Consequently, under cover of the plea of the necessity of getting the permission of the A. B. C. F. M., which at that time took a whole year, they perfected their plans, and Judd, Richards, Armstrong, and Andrews rather ostentatiously severed their outward connection with the mission and took positions under the Government, or more properly speaking, took the Government. This was just into their hands; nothing could have been finer. And from this time on, through all the various changes and vicissitudes of fortune, they looked upon the little kingdom as the veritable promised land, and taught their descendants to recognize and claim it and all belonging to it, together with the reversion and reversions, remainder and remainders, rents, issues, and profits thereof as their rightful heritage for all time.
The development of the whale fisheries of this ocean and the increased commerce resulting therefrom brought to these shores quite a number of visitors of various nationalities during the decade under consideration, some of whom became permanent residents. Many of these people were men of education, knowledge of the world, and more than usual ability.
These were confronted by a singular social condition of things not a little puzzling to the uninitiated. Our Puritan brethren had by this time increased in numbers to such an extent as to form a community of their own, and, as before remarked, were drafted from a stratum of society which was not only destitute of the advantages of social training and polish, but which with genuine loyality to their creed and their history, affected to despise the manners and courtesies which amongst civilized nations are the evidences of good breeding. With them the sum of all the virtues consisted in the exhibition of those Puritanical characteristics so familiar to the reader of English history, and the moral obliquity which prompted them to haze the Catholic out of the vineyard caused them to surround themselves with a barrier of social exclusiveness as impenetrable as an East Indian caste. An exception, however, was made in favor of those who were sufficiently hypocritical to make a pretense of adopting their creed and outwardly conforming to their ways.
These being the conditions of social recognition, it will be readily [Page 749]seen that the recruits from what they were pleased to term the “world’s people” were, with scarcely an exception, the most unworthy sneaks whom greed of gain had tempted so far from home. And in some cases, family and business alliances the most incongruous were made with persons of more than doubtful morality, if judged by the Puritan standard. It must not be forgotten, however, that deviations from their generally exclusive rule had, in almost all cases, solid material advantages to commend them—considerations which the Puritan has never yet been known to ignore.
The Hawaiian, at this period, presents many interesting and curious features to the student of history. The memories of the great Kamehameha had not lost their influence, and the ruling chiefs, in many cases, proved themselves not unworthy successors to the founder of Hawaiian unity, giving evidence of firmness, moderation, and judgment which challenge the admiration of all who are acquainted with the complicated problems demanding their solution at this stage of their national existence.
Their reception of the white men was altogether unique. History furnishes no parallel. While in all time and in every part of the world the colonization of a superior race has been vigorously resented and repelled by force of arms, usually resulting in the ultimate subjugation or extinction of the aborigines, the Hawaiian welcomed his white visitor, encouraged him to remain, adopted his religion and dress, aped his manners, sought his instruction, and finally asked his assistance in framing a government on a civilized model. A reception so unusual was quite to the taste of our “message” bearing friends, who did not fail to make the most of it, while some of the world’s people were more modest, as appeared at the time of the election of representatives to the first Legislature in 1845, when the Hawaiians urged their white friends to accept their suffrages, and show them how to carry on the business of legislation, they themselves being desirous of learning the methods of representative government before assuming any responsible part in its management.
All the lands, without exception, belonged to the Crown and to the heads of the powerful chiefly families. Without hesitation the chiefs enfranchised the common natives and divided the lands between the Government, themselves, and the people, giving titles in severalty on terms which have commanded the approval of all acquainted with the conditions.
Up to this time the nation had encountered no serious difficulties excepting those occasioned by following the advice and instructions of the “message” bearers, which were prompted by a selfish jealousy of all others in the field.
In arranging the machinery and perfecting the methods of government it was very soon discovered by everyone outside their own following that the unassisted efforts of the “message” bearers were wholly unequal to the task; consequently the services of such men as Wyllie, Robertson, Record, Lee, and others, professional men, not of the fold however, were secured, and the little nation very soon took its place in the great family of independent states by virtue of treaties negotiated with rare tact and good judgment, chiefly through the efforts of Wyllie,
By 1853 the little ship of state was fairly under way. Representative Government was running smoothly, and the common people were learning their duties as freeholders, and taking such part in public affairs as their intelligence fitted them for. Honolulu had become an important shipping port not unknown in the business centers of the [Page 750]world. The permanent white population of the city and the Kingdom had rapidly increased, and in cultivation and general intelligence was probably above the average of communities of its size, as people who go to settle so far away from home are usually the most enterprising among their fellows; This class of people was sufficiently numerous in the city itself to form a separate community or society, as it were, who were in the habit of thinking and acting for themselves, and to whom the little country owed most, if not all, the standing it held abroad.
This class lived on the best of terms with the Hawaiian chiefs and people, some of them having formed matrimonial alliances with the native families of the higher grades. Our Puritan friends did not look with any more favor on this class than they did on the Catholics, meting out to them but scant courtesy, and but little, if any, of that Christian charity of which they were presumed to be the exemplars. In fact, they had no use for anyone whom they could not bully and browbeat into a cringing sycophant or a willing tool. They took the most offensive ways of reminding people of their supreme hold on the King and Government, quite in keeping with their early training, or the lack of it, wholly and contemptuously ignoring such men as Wyllie and Robertson, who had done the work and gave character to the Government under the new conditions.
This state of things could not last long and resulted in the appointment, after several popular meetings, of a committee of 13 citizens (some of them now living), who waited on His Majesty Kamehameha III, demanding the dismissal of Judd and his associates. This was readily acceded to, but not without some expressions of surprise on the part of the King and his native advisers at the existence of such a bitter antagonism between people of a race claiming so great a superiority to the Hawaiians. The common natives were bewildered at the exhibition. They attended the meetings without taking part. As their fathers, shortly after welcoming the first sky pilots, saw reason to repent of their rashness, the sons began to entertain grave doubts with regard to the wisdom of the new tinkers in Governmental affairs, as well as to the results of their tinkering. The effect on our “message” bearers was indescribable. Each one of the 250 odd men, women, and children belonging to their guild looked upon the downfall of the Judd cabinet as a personal calamity. They realized that the heritage was in danger. This was the first genuine setback they had ever experienced.
For the next twenty years the Government, while by no means perfect, was, under the virile rule of the last of the Kamehamehas, administered with evenhanded justice, having regard for the interests of all and endeavoring to secure the greatest good to the greatest number. During this time the most capable men in the realm, regardless of nationality or creed, were called upon to assist the head of the nation with their counsel. This call did not, however, at any time during this period include any member of the Puritan guild, whose interests were not by any means ignored, as some of their members were honored with subordinate appointments, where they could do no harm. During all this time—to the annointed an eternity, to the rest of the nation a respite—there was no publication which would admit their drivel but was loaded with their complaints, and no pulpit into which they could climb but resounded with their wails and maledictions.
Another page of history is completed and the Puritan is again in luck. The last of the Kamehamehas is gathered to his fathers at the close of 1872, and as the Hawaiian saw the last representative of his race [Page 751]who had strength and genius enough to keep ahead of the wheels of the juggernaut of human progress enter the family mausoleum there is little wonder that his grief was inconsolable and that he gave himself up to despair. Poor Lunalilo, a weak, but in some respects brilliant, offshoot of the old stock, was unanimously elected to the vacant throne, as by law provided. Our “message,” bearing friends, all but famished from their long fast, were at his collar in a moment and never let go their hold till they dropped him in the grave, after only one brief year of power. As was their traditional custom, they had again made the most of their opportunities, securing as many as possible of the subordinate offices, positions on the various boards, Privy Council, House of Nobles, etc.
During the reign of Lunalilo the course of events was somewhat modified by an element not altogether unknown, but exceedingly distasteful to our friends, in the person of Walter Murray Gibson.
The throne was again filled by the election of Kalakaua in 1874.
As Prince Lunalilo was, according to the Hawaiian standard, of a chiefly rank superior to that of any one living at the time of his election to the throne, he had no competitors, and his elevation to an heretofore hereditary throne by a popular election seemed in no way to affect the current of events. The position was looked upon as almost his by right of inheritance, and was cheerfully confirmed to him by legal formalities. When, however, it became necessary to fill the throne a second time in the same way the whole situation was quite different.
The oft repeated statement that “Paris is France” might with perfect propriety be paraphrased to apply, during the period under consideration, to the little capital city of Honolulu, which, in almost every sense, was to all intents and purposes the Hawaiian Kingdom. The only safe harbor for deep-water vessels was here, all the business agencies were located here, and all the enterprises throughout the Kingdom centered in and were controlled from the city. During the twenty years since we last noticed the make-up of its society, the conditions had somewhat changed and should claim our attention for a moment.
Social and business methods had, so to speak, crystallized; several commercial houses had been established, which, in all respects, would compare favorably with the best in any large seaport; a bank had been opened, having correspondence with all the principal business centers of the world; newspapers in the Hawaiian and English languages had been established, and had a wide domestic circulation; foreign churches, benevolent societies; Masonic and other lodges were organized and in a flourishing condition; the American, English, and German people had representatives amongst the permanent residents of the city from almost every grade of society in their respective nations; in fact, the city was as fairly a representative cosmopolitan community on a small scale as San Francisco or New York.
The whaling business had declined, and attention of late had been directed to agricultural and grazing ventures which were fairly remunerative, and if the American tariff were not in the way (European markets being beyond our reach) would to all appearances be opulence itself. Serious efforts had therefore been made for several years to, in some way, get over this tariff by annexation, reciprocity, or a, remission of duties on Hawaiian products entering American markets. The first method was not popular with the Hawaiian nation at large, the third was impossible from an American standpoint, consequently the ingenuity [Page 752]of the best contrivers in the little Kingdom was strained to the utmost to convince American statesmen that 2 and 2 made 5, and that great material advantages would inure to the Republic through a commercial treaty of reciprocity with Hawaii. The native Hawaiian understood little or nothing of the force of the project, and failed to see wherein he would be benefited, but as his white friend and guest so greatly desired its consummation, he, as usual, good-naturedly assented and rendered such assistance as he could to bring about the desired end.
The foregoing in brief was the condition of things, business generally slack, profits uncertain, and the reciprocity treaty hanging fire in Washington, when the 12th of February, 1874, arrived. This was the day appointed by Ministerial proclamation for the Legislature to assemble and fill by ballot the place made vacant by the death of Lunalilo. The Legislature met. There were but two candidates, Queen Emma and David Kalakaua.
Queen Emma was the choice of the native Hawaiian population, almost to a man; but saint and sinner for once met on common ground and decided to, if possible, defeat the wish of the people by securing the election of Kalakaua. The reasons for the union of effort, on the part of people so radically antagonistic, to compass the election of Kalakaua are worthy of attention. As has been heretofore mentioned, a recipocity treaty with the United States, or something equivalent thereto, had for some time been looked upon by the majority of the business community as being the only salvation. This view had been almost universally adopted by the American Missionaries, their descendants and associates. It may be here remarked as a significant fact that with two exceptions, the children of the missionaries neglected to enter the chosen field of their fathers, they seeming quite content to let the souls of the gentle islanders take their chances, while for themselves they generally preferred lines which gave promise of more tangible rewards for thrift and energy.
The wisdom of their choice being at the present time amply demonstrated by the enormous annual gains of some of their number, which far outrun the wildest dreams of romance, as for instance, Baldwin, with a net gain for the year 1889 of over $300,000, followed closely by the Wilcoxs, Bailey, Alexander, Castle, Cooke, Rice, and a number of others hardly less fortunate. It may also be remarked at this time that the term “missionary,” which to those acquainted with the general relationship of individuals, business enterprises, etc., is quite clear and definite, to the uninitiated is likely to be misleading and requires a word of explanation. The nature of their society and the methods of recruiting from the “outside world” have been before alluded to, and with this in mind it will be readily seen that the missionaries, at the time of which we are treating, included in their fold a large number who could lay no claim to this designation except in so far as they acted with the saints when the balance of the world was to be beaten, and made a pretense of covering their moral nakedness from time to time as suited their convenience with a cloak of religious hypocrisy.
The members of this guild, more especially the original missionaries, considered themselves and taught their children to feel that they occupied a moral and social plane far above not only the native Hawaiian, but all “outsiders” of their own race. In fact, the missionary placed between his own family and the generous-hearted islander whom he came across the sea to pilot the way to everlasting life, a chasm far more difficult to bridge than ever existed between the [Page 753]“haughty” Southerner and his African slave. Fortune favored the guild with material wealth, and it might with truth be said that the financial resources of the country were practically in their hands. It did not take long for this class to be designated the “Missionary party,” by which term it is now generally known. This is, however, periodically resented by members of their guild in the newspapers of the day—sometimes snappishly, and at others with a whine.
The foregoing little digression seems necessary to explain the situation and, to be brief, the Missionary party espoused the cause of Kalakaua with the view of reinstating themselves in the position they enjoyed before the downfall of Judd, not doubting that the new King would prove a willing tool to act their bidding. David’s inpecuniosity and other social disabilities seemed to them sufficient ground for believing that ordinary gratitude, if no other motive, would induce him to heed their instructions. On the other hand, Queen Emma was surrounded by and under the control of individuals and influences not only inimical to the “Missionary Party,” but to a treaty of reciprocity with the United States, or, in fact, any other compact which might, even remotely, threaten the autonomy of the Kingdom.
She was a member of the Anglican Church in Honolulu, and her principal advisers and associates were British people, all of whom were opposed to any American alliance, excepting a certain few whose interests were such as to be favorably affected by a modification of the tariff on Hawaiian products entering American ports, in their case self interest triumphed over patriotism and they either remained silent or sided with the “Missionary Party” which was, by the way, at this time, the only class which deserved the name of a “party”, all others were simply “outsiders”.
By law, the election was in the hands of the Legislature, consisting of about fifty members, over two-thirds of whom were native Hawaiians. This simplified the manipulation of the business very much, and for the first time in the history of the nation the white man applied to the most important election ever held in the Kingdom the methods so common in the ward politics of New York and other American cities thereby grossly deceiving the people, controventing the popular will and ultimately gaining the desired end by the election of Kalakaua.
For the first time in his experience, more than fifty years after he had first welcomed his white brother to his shores and besought his instruction in the ways of civilization and religion, the Hawaiian found himself face to face with the bugbear of race prejudice. It was a new and strange element to him which he did not understand and for which he was not responsible. The men like Wyllie, Robertson, Harris, and their associates who had formulated for him methods of government, forseeing the possibility of the intrusion of this prejudice in the affairs of state, had diligently guarded against such a catastrophe and as long as their counsels prevailed the danger was averted.
From this time on the internal relations of the heterogeneous commonwealth rapidly changed, and the aboriginal Hawaiian, who had been so long the subject of prayerful solicitude was forgotten, his interests and rights ignored and despised, and as from time to time he appeared in the Legislature of his native land, he was either cajoled, bullied, or bought into supporting the schemes of his white brother. The basket of loaves and fishes was small, the hungry maws numerous, manners scarce, and consequently the scramble for spoils and plunder was savage. Our Puritan friends and their allies, with the sentiment strong within them of rightful inheritance to everything in sight, were [Page 754]not to be indifferently dealt with. After the usual wire pulling the game was called and the saints showed up with the practical control in almost every branch of the public service, Cabinet, Supreme Court, Board of Education, Bureau of Surveying, etc.
The inchoate American reciprocity treaty was a matter of so much importance, meaning as it did success or failure to almost every enterprise in the Kingdom outside of the capturing of fish and the manufacture of poi, that after the first grab and snarl over the plums, all whose interests were to be affected by the change of tariff, united in as cordial a manner as might, for instance, the fiercer animals of a menagerie when confronted by a common danger in a supreme effort to secure its ratification. The aged Chief-Justice Allen, of the Supreme Court, was relieved of his duties on the bench and dispatched to Washington armed with a high-sounding title to represent the interests of the little country (or rather its moneyed and planting interests), and urge on the treaty to its final ratification. A better choice could not have been made, as Judge Allen was a typical American politician of large experience in his native land before coming to Hawaii, and both training and self-interest united in causing him to put forward his best efforts to ensure the success of the mission entrusted to his care. A trump card in the game was to send the King to Washington and show to the Republicans the anomaly of (as Barnum would have put it) the only King on earth who owed his throne to, and reigned by the will of the people, and not by the grace of God.
Accordingly the King, accompanied by a staff of officers selected for the trip, visited America’s capital, also several other principal cities, and for the time being, in physical proportion to say the least, was a “bigger man than Grant.”
During the period of waiting for Uncle Sam to make up his mind to grant their request, our little insular community put in the time pulling faces at one another, intriguing for and securing positions for themselves and their favorites. In this contest the Missionary party were generally consistent and loyal to themselves, whilst outsiders had to fight their battles singly, having only the support of their personal friends. The Honolulu newspapers of the years 1875 and 1876 contain some spicy reading of a personal nature, giving evidence of more than usual bitterness, which, in the Legislature of 1876, culminated in an open feud. A majority of the assembly was native Hawaiians, with six or seven British, and the remainder Americans, German, and half-caste.
The native Hawaiian leaders were not all dead, and some of the brightest then living were in the house; amongst them were Aholo and Pilipo. The quarrel was confined to the white members, and took the form of a determined effort to unseat the cabinet. The wrangle was boisterous, filled with bitter personalities, and in every way unseemly. It continued for three days, the native members remaining mute spectators during the whole time. In the afternoon of the third day, all the contestants being blown, question was called. The native members glanced around to Pilipo as one who might say a word for them touching the situation. Pilipo arose with great deliberation, addressed the chair, asked the indulgence of the house for a few moments, and reminded the interpreter that as what he was about to say was intended especially for his “white brethren,” he wanted his views made very clear to them.
Pilipo proceeded, and as he warmed to the subject, his few moments extended to an hour and a half, compassing one of the most scathing, [Page 755]eloquent addresses ever heard in the house, and what proved to be almost the last effort of the kind by a Hawaiian Orator worthy of notice. The interpreter did his duty well, and the word pictures presented for the consideration of Pilipo’s “white brethren” were very sharply outlined and anything but flattering to their vanity. The orator briefly reviewed the history of the intercourse of foreigners with his own race, something after the fashion of this sketch, amplifying where it best suited his purpose. He dwelt at length on the errand of the missionary to these shores and his agency in instructing the Hawaiian in the ways of religion and civilization. He painted in vivid colors the picture of the three days’ wrangle just past, making sarcastic comparisons and comments on the whole.
The effect of the speech was indescribable. Those of his hearers who had not taken part in the quarrel could scarcely restrain themselves from violating the dignity of the house by giving the orator an ovation. Even at this time the Hawaiian did not realize that his “white brother” and guest had got tired of him, and had been so long the recipient of his hospitality that he looked upon his privileges as vested rights and preferred to enjoy them to the exclusion of the host.
At last the good news came. The treaty was a reality. Then came the rejoicing, firing of guns, display of fireworks, and the like. Those who were to be the most benefited by it and who made the most noise over its consummation never in the wildest flights of fancy dreamed of the success in store for them. Had they been told that they, descendants of shirt sleeves with no more claim to a pedigree than a Government mule, would, each one of them, be within a decade in the yearly receipt of an annual income equal to many of the noble families of Europe, who trace their lineage through a host of distinguished ancestors for hundreds of years back, they would have been offended as being made game of.
This, however, is the fact, and until “the frost, the killing frost,” of the McKinley bill “nipped their root” there was every prospect of a very material increase of their prosperity from year to year as long as the terms of the treaty were in force. Coal Oil Johnny’s success has had several counterparts in the Paradise of the Pacific, not followed, however, by Johnny’s improvidence, as it is hardly likely that should the descendants of the penurious New Englander suddenly find that the earth beneath his feet had turned to gold he would spurn it on account of its abundance. This phenomenal good fortune was turned into the laps of the few, however, the many having to be content with the crumbs, so that the condition of the little paradise is in many respects somewhat similar to that of Athens under the thirty tyrants.
In the struggle for position and power the churchman forgot his creed and the sinner gave rein to his passions, while both ignored the interests and rights of the Kanaka. These facts were seized upon by Gibson (of whom mention has already been made) and shown up in both Hawaiian and English newspapers with great clearness and skill. The thorough literary Bohemian that he was, he also possessed a much greater knowledge and experience of men and affairs, diplomacy, and statesmanship than people of his class usually have, and, in fact, had forgotten more moves and tricks in the game now on the board than all the rest of the players ever knew. Among the native Hawaiian population he, of course, very soon gained a large following, which was supplemented by a not inconsiderable portion of the foreign residents of various shades of opinion, who supported his views to a greater or less degree. It hardly needs mentioning that the missionary party from [Page 756]the first looked with aversion and distrust on his appearance in the political arena.
These sentiments in a short time ripened into enmity and hatred, and for the genuine, consistent passion there is hardly a shadow of doubt the Puritan stands ahead, more especially when it is directed against an opponent of greater ability than he possesses himself, or, in other words, who draws too much water for him. Gibson was elected to the assembly in 1878, and, being returned each session till called upon to form a cabinet, he displayed many of those qualities which are so essential to the success of the political worker, and worried the souls of all the saints and quite a number of the sinners without rest or intermission. The prizes were getting larger and the points of vantage more important every day, and the contest waxed fiercer all the time. Lands, contracts, and franchises were increasing in value and must be secured at all hazards—by fair means if possible, by foul if necessary.
Fair means were out of the question, as the arena was so small that no move could be made without the knowledge of all the contestants, and the native officials and legislators soon learned a new lesson (new to them) in politics, to wit, that official position had a money value, conveniently measured by the purses of those requiring their assistance. In a short time the native Hawaiian, from the most obscure voter to the King himself, was so thoroughly debauched by the white man’s gold that his standard of right and wrong was almost if not wholly destroyed, and his moral sense of personal rectitude was completely dulled by sophistry, gin, and coin. A truly deplorable condition, for which saint and sinner are about equally responsible.
As an example of the methods adopted by those who would violently resent the charge of anything bordering on dishonorable conduct or unfair means, it may be mentioned that one of the numerous ministries (cabinets) of this period, one that was as fairly representative as any that ever filled the position, and who were earnestly endeavoring to perform their duties, while consulting with and receiving advice from prominent members of the business community were being undermined by the very men with whom they were in communication, and who were fairness itself to the faces of the cabinet. Compensation came, however, in a singular way. The two-faced gentlemen did not feel themselves strong enough to carry out their plot single-handed, so they made overtures to Gibson, making all sorts of fair promises, which no one knew better than Gibson himself were never intended to be fulfilled.
They were not wise in approaching a player so far their superior in a game of this kind. After playing one crowd against the other until he learned what each held, Gibson, with the most bland and easy manner imaginable, dropped both sides, stepped in and took the bun without any trouble whatever, formed a cabinet of his own, much to the amusement of the native Hawaiian, who as heretofore was not a party to the contest. The disappointment and rage of the defeated contestants were truly pathetic. To be beaten was bad enough, but to be caught in one’s own trap, sold, and laughed at by even the Kanakas was too much. “Eternal enmity to Rome and fealty to Carthage” was but an empty vow in comparison with the oath by which the schemers bound themselves each to the other to compass the final ruin of the man who had held them up to public ridicule.
Fort Street Church (now Central Union Church) was organized in 1852, the Honolulu Chamber of Commerce a few years later, and the Planters’ Labor and Supply Company soon after the ratification of the [Page 757]treaty, the three together containing the whole of the missionary party, together with a small sprinkling of those who did not wholly sympathize with their views and aspirations. On the accession of Gibson to position and power a general tarpauline muster of all the brains in the crowd was made, committees were appointed, resolutions passed, memorials prepared, appeals and petitions drawn; in fact the maggot bed had a spasm which threatened as serious consequences to the patient (i. e., the maggot bed) as sometimes follows a congestive chill. They appealed to the American Minister resident (Daggett), carried in solemn procession their memorials and petitions to the King, and prayed to the Lord Almighty—all without any apparent result. Gibson compassed the whole in replies and dispatches which were respectful, polished, and diplomatic, and which might have served as forms for them in their future correspondence. He remained unshaken.
It very soon became apparent that he was the rallying point for the native Hawaiians, who, under his guidance and tutelage, were beginning to learn, and in a measure appreciate the relation of matters, and to assert their rights in the land of their birth. No sooner did the Missionary party understand this new feature of the game than without hesitation they unblushingly proclaimed that the Kanaka must go. They conveniently forgot the errand which ostensibly brought their forefathers to these shores, despised the rights of hospitality, and, blinded by cupidity, worked themselves up to the point where they were prepared to override and trample upon any and all rights and interests not in harmony with their own. In short, certain of their number did not hesitate to say that the money and thrift of the white men having made the country what it was, it was high time that it should be made in fact, as well as appearance, a white man’s govenment.
This was the attitude assumed in the face of the fact that ever since the foundation of the Government under its present form, the chief judicial, executive, and diplomatic offices had been voluntarily conferred upon foreigners, the Hawaiian having a laudable desire to be represented by at least one position in the cabinet.
Up to this time no demand on his generosity had been refused. The sugar plantations of his white brother required cheap labor. He, without hesitation, voted from the public treasury large sums to defray the expense of scouring the world to satisfy the demand. China, Japan, the South Seas, Germany, and Norway, were in turn thoroughly tried as sources of supply. The demand far exceeded the supply, and at the urgent request of his white brother, he threw open the flood gates in 1881 and thousands of Chinese swarmed on his shores in a yellow tide that brought with it not only all the vices of the pagan Asiatics, but also an epidemic which laid 300 native Hawaiians corpses forever to rest in the sands of the quarantine station at Honolulu, and cost the public treasury $110,000 in cash.
The production of sugar by Chinese coolies was not looked upon with favor by our California friends, but labor must be had, and the Hawaiian was again called upon to lend his assistance to the introduction of the less objectionable Japanese. Again he yielded, only to find that he had at last practically voted away the avenues of occupation for his own countrymen, and had, at the crafty solicitation of those whom he had supposed to be his friends, filled his country with a heterogeneous horde of pagans and worse, far outnumbering his own people, with whom they had little or nothing in common, and who, [Page 758]like his white brother, were beginning to look upon the Hawaiian as an intruder on his own soil.
To the saintly Puritans and their successors all this had no weight and was unworthy of their notice. There was too much in the pot to run the risk of any accidents, and the only sure way to success was to blow out the lights, snatch the pot, and jump the game. But while our friends of the “Missionary party” possessed wealth enough to corrupt the Russian Empire, and were actuated by all the sentiments required to overturn the world, they yet lacked two very essential elements to success, which were intelligent leadership and pluck sufficient to carry the scheme into execution. While they longed for the possession of the coveted prize, they were in no hurry to risk their own precious carcasses in securing it, and consequently cast about for some accommodating cat to reach after the chestnuts for them. The right kind of a cat was not just to hand, and our friends had to content themselves, for a few years longer, with putting up their money lavishly on elections and subsidizing every vagrant Bohemian blackguard within reach to write libelous matter for the local and foreign press, denouncing the Government and every one connected therewith.
By continual hammering, a sentiment of antagonism to the Hawaiian Government and more especially to the native Hawaiians themselves was propagated, chiefly amongst comparatively new comers who knew nothing, and cared less, of the history of the country and who were quite ready to look upon the native much in the same way as the western pioneer does on the Comanche Indian. A suitable cat was at last found in the person of a Canadian adventurer, who possessed the necessary ability to organize and encourage, to execute the plans of usurpation, and who far surpassed his employers in the possession of the common honesty to frankly avow at the start that, while glory might have had some attractions for him in his tender youth, coin was at present his strongest incentive to action, and that his zeal would be measured by the amount in sight. All was satisfactorily arranged with little delay, the cat receiving a handsome subsidy from both side without the knowledge of the other, and the conspiracy was in running order in a short time.
Our missionary conspirators justified their course with the hollow pretense that they were seeking the adoption of governmental reforms which could be secured in no other way than by violence. They raised their hands in holy indignation and horror at such ill-advised schemes as the “kaimiloa” the genealogy board, and royal cemeteries, and words failed them in expressing their detestation of the Aki opium swindle and kindred irregularities. While little or nothing can be said in defense or extenuation of the follies referred to, it would seem not out of place to note the fact that, from a moral and financial standpoint, their injury to the commonwealth was trifling in comparison to the damage done by the eccentricities of the conspirators’ favorites, which left their marks on the waterwoks of Nuuanu Valley, the reservoir and land damages in Makiki, the quarantine graveyard at Honolulu, the South Sea immigration venture of the barque Hawaii, the “Likelike” and bellows opium business, and a score of other outrages of a similar nature which were hushed up, whitewashed, or hidden from the public as far as possible.
During the first half of the year ’87 the conspirators were busy perfecting their plans. A league was formed, a large fund subscribed, and members sworn in, at first with some care, but as their numbers grew they gained confidence and relaxed their circumspection. Waifs from [Page 759]all parts of the world, temporarily stranded on these shores, were attracted by all sorts of impossible promises of official employment as soon as the move became a success. The “Honolulu Rifles,” a battalion of four companies, wholly composed of Europeans, armed and equipped at the expense of the Hawaiian treasury, was organized and drilled incessantly. Arms and ammunition in large quantities were imported and distributed. Mention should not be omitted of the fact that during all the excitement of these stirring times the quality of thrift was mot for a moment lost sight of by the saints, as they generously imported military equipments, costing $6.50 per man, which they supplied to the members of the league and such others as they thought could be trusted at $18 and upwards.
No must it be lost sight of that the sentiment of self-preservation was always strong in the breasts of the saints, and on this occasion was developed in a rather quaint and amusing way. When their commander began making assignments to duty he overlooked this quality in a portion of his band and made a pardonable mistake of distributing to some of our friends tasks the fulfillment of which might be attended with a possibility of personal danger. He was quickly reminded that in great enterprises affecting the fate of nations it was not usual to expose the Marlboroughs and Napoleons of the movement to the possibility of being snuffed out; in other words, our friends recognized themselves as the brains of the crowd, and they did not propose to run any personal risk, but would at all times hold themselves in readiness to give chin music in unlimited quantities, seasoned from time to time with small allowances of coin.
The organization of the conspiracy was much more complete perhaps than movements of this kind usually are. It had its military commander; council of thirteen, otherwise known as the committee of “public safety,” and which was the fountainhead for all orders; its military force, uniformed, fully equipped, and drilled, ready at a moment’s notice to obey without question any orders from the committee of “public safety;” a large body of citizens, fully armed and supplied with ammunition who had familiarized themselves with the use of their weapons by frequent target practice during several months past—in fact, it was as completely organized as the Hawaiian Government itself, and, as it turned out, much better handled. Of all the foregoing the Government was from time to time fully informed, and the indifference or pretended disbelief of Gibson in the existence of anything out of the usual course, or which would be likely to make trouble, is difficult to reconcile with his habitual astuteness.
However, this was about the condition of things during the latter days of June, 1887. Fully prepared as the organization was for immediate action, the leaders were at a loss just how to begin. The country was apparently at peace with all the world, and more especially with itself. All the functions of the Government were being performed as usual, the courts were disposing of the business brought before them without interruption, and to a stranger just arrived nothing unusual would appear to be in the wind. Consequently, it was not quite clear how to proceed. A committee of public safety was bent double with the weight of an indefinable responsibility, and yet it was not quite apparent just what they were called upon to save, as the public peace and safety did not somehow appear to be in any immediate danger, unless from the committee themselves and their satellites. But something must be done, and that very soon, as it would never do [Page 760]to allow of even a little time for thought, which would inevitably lead to a reaction, when all would be lost.
In order to make the initiatory movement appear to the outside world as springing from a popular demand for the correction of abuses, it was decided to hold in the Rifles Armory, on the 30th of June, a public meeting to which all were invited without regard to nationality, and in order to guard against any miscarriages in their designs the Rifles in uniform, with arms and ammunition, were on hand, ostensibly to preserve order. Some of the speakers addressed the assembly while in uniform, holding their weapons in one hand, while they frantically sawed the air with the other and ranted about reform. The subject introduced, and on which they intended to justify their course, was a wholesale amending of the faulty constitution of 1864. This, by the way, was the hollowest of all their hollow pretenses, as a constitution had already been prepared by them for a republican form of government, and which, of course, contemplated the deposition of the King and complete remodeling of the governmental machinery.
The meeting was attended pretty generally by the European residents, and a few Hawaiians, attracted by curiosity as their fathers had been on a somewhat similar occasion thirty-four years before. It was quite evident from the very beginning that there was no intention on the part of the conspirators to permit of anything like a free discussion of the subjects of public interest, as a speaker was listened to and permitted to speak only so long as he echoed the sentiments of the league. Any suggestion of a constitutional convention or of a submission of a constitution to a vote of the people was immediately drowned in angry yells. (See “Sketch of Recent Events,” p. 15.) The object which the meeting was advertised for, to-wit, discussion, was not allowed. A number of harangues, sounding strangely in these latter matter-of-fact years of the nineteenth century, were followed by the reading and adoption of an already prepared set of demands on the King, which were intended to be so exacting as to ensure their immediate rejection. The meeting adjourned, and the committee presented the demands to the King, who immediately yielded to them all without modification. The “committee of public safety “charged themselves with the care of the town, and the little pretorian guard of the Honolulu Rifles were assigned to various points.
The ready acquiescence of the King to their demands seriously disconcerted the conspirators, as they had hoped that his refusal would have given them an excuse for deposing him, and a show of resistance a justification for assassinating him. Then everything would have been plain sailing for their little oligarchy, with a sham republican constitution.
Now, the only thing to be done, so far as they could see, was to make without delay a constitution conforming to their demands and submit it for his (the King’s) signature. This was no small job for the class of workmen at their command. There seemed to be no help for it, and the maggot bed took another spasm. The little hole in the corner, self-constituted constitution-framers tackled the business off hand and wrestled with their self-imposed task for a whole week. “Parturient montes,” etc., was distances, and on the 6th of July, 1887, they presented a constitution which was signed by the King with as little delay as he had shown a week previous—a constitution which, until signed and promulgated, had not been seen even, to say nothing of being studied and discussed, by more than two score of people, and these being exclusively conspirators.[Page 761]
This hardly deserves the qualifying statement that the conspirators’ constitution was shown to some of the judges of the Supreme Court before it was-signed and promulgated, as it was shown to them in about the spirit that many people seek advice from their friends when they have no intention of following any advice at all at variance with their own views.
A cabinet from the “committee of public safety” took the portfolios. Gibson and his son-in-law lieutenant were arrested and placed under a guard of the Rifles and league, which were now in undisputed possession of the Government and all belonging to it.
The anomalous condition of affairs now for the first time began to dawn on the more thoughtful participants in the conspiracy, a number of whom had gone into the scheme with an honest desire for reform and a general correction of abuses, and to whom the awkardness of their position now became apparent.
The ease with which the overturn had been effected proved a source of embarrassment to the revolutionists, who found themselves in possession of everything in sight without striking a blow or firing a shot, and the heterogeneous crowd now began to eye each other suspiciously with the view of determining who could be dropped out in the distribution of the spoils.
The instincts of the Puritan marred the success of the scheme almost from its birth. The native Hawaiians had no part in the business, and within a week after the promulgation of the new constitution the saints were devising methods for ridding themselves of the inconvenient partnership of those of their own race who were outside the pale, but whose presence and help had made the undertaking possible.
During the whole period of incubation of the precious conspiracy they (the saints) held meetings to which only the elect were called. These select gatherings were continued after their accession to power, and at one of them, held on the 7th or 8th of July, 1887, Dole (the present chief of the Provisional Government) made the remark, while treating of the unfortunate necessity to which the Lord’s anointed had been subjected of accepting the assistance of the unwashed, that in a short time, as soon as they had settled themselves fairly into the saddle, they would be able to get rid of the presence of. The Canadian “as one would throw away a dirty dishrag,” accompanying the remark with a fitting gesture and suggestive grimace.
The only justification of the revolutionists for seizing the reins of power and overturning the Government was the crying necessity for the correction of abuses and the immediate prevention of continued malfeasance in the administration of the several departments. Consequently they lost no time in employing an expensive staff of experts and proceeding to an exhaustive examination in every direction which would be likely to prove anything irregular against either or both the King and his prime minister, Gibson. In Spite of their most strenuous efforts, extending over a period of more than two months, the scheme resulted in a miserable failure, as their ferrets could find nothing on which to base a charge.
But they were not to be foiled in their determination to get revenge on the man who had so long held them at bay. An adventurous strumpet was induced by them to bring a suit for $10,000 damages for a breach of promise of marriage against Gibson, he being out of the country at the time. A jury was easily found to assist in the fraud, and the amount claimed was awarded in full. A greater outrage on an indivictual, [Page 762]or a more abominable travesty of justice, never before received the sanction of a Hawaiian court.
The new cabinet, backed by the pretorian guard of “Honolulu rifles,” decided on making a show to the world and at the same time demonstrating to the native Hawaiians how insignificant a factor they had become in the land of their birth. A general election of members of the Legislature was ordered for the 15th September, 1887, within the lines of the new constitution, and under regulations which the revolutionists were confident would preclude the possibility of any failure in their schemes. The division of the whole country into “districts,” “wards,” and “precincts,” and the organization of political clubs, with the peculiar technical slang of the ward bosses, were new and novel features in the Paradise of the Pacific; but the business was pushed forward with a zeal worthy of a better cause, and a whole crop of McLeans, McLeods, McStockers, O’Raffertys, and the like, bloomed out like magic as managers and instructors in the science of how to beat an overwhelming majority of the honest citizens at the polls.
Nor were any of the minor details overlooked. The swaggering gait, tilted hat, humped shoulder, and leering stare of the ward bosses made the stranger from New York and San Francisco feel quite at home, and gave unmistakable assurances of our being fully abreast of the age. The missionary of the present generation became an apt pupil of the scoundrel, who was an adept in all the black arts by which the will of the people is defeated at the ballot box. In due course the election was held, and the results showed how perfectly the organization of the revolutionists had been carried out. Only two independent native Hawaiians out of forty eight elected members were returned to the assembly, and these two were practically under the control of the machine. The average standard of intelligence of the Legislature was much lower than that of any Hawaiian Legislature either before or since, and included such men as Notley, Wall, Makee, the two Dowsetts, father and son, the Wilcox brothers, George and Albert Deacon, and the like; men who were selected because they could be depended upon to vote straight without any danger of their giving trouble by having views of their own.
The mental and moral obliquities of the lawgivers were plainly outlined in their physical deformities, as seven-eighths of the whole number were either pigeontoed, knock-kneed, or bow-legged, and served as excellent illustrations of the well-known physiological principle or truth of the general harmony of mental and physical attributes. The history of the session and the character of the work done did not in any way disappoint those at all acquainted with the personnel of the honorable body. The speakers and leaders in the Assembly, without exception, were members of or under control of, the Missionary party, and the whole business of the session was carried through on the “cut-and-dried” principle. The main object in view was to emphasize their contempt for the King, his native subjects, and all others who were not in sympathy with the revolutionists, and at the same time to strengthen, by suitable legislation, their hold of the situation. When they felt they had attained their object they adjourned, “subject to the call of the President of the Legislature,” avoiding prorogation, thereby still further showing their determination to arrogate to themselves all the functions of government.
The community, the nation at large, soon realized that instead of being ruled over by one king, who, however injudicious he might be at times, never failed to realize that he was the first gentleman of the [Page 763]realm, they were being ruthlessly dominated by four kings who were personifications of arrogance and boorish ignorance. Their management of the several departments, distribution of patronage, and haughty indifference to the wishes of those who had helped them to power caused an inevitable revulsion amongst their own adherents, to say nothing of the increased alienation of the native Hawaiians, who now began to understand and feel the indignities heaped upon them.
It was plain to be seen that the coming election, not far distant, would show a decided change very likely disastrous to the saints. In the meantime a few ill-advised natives, with R. W. Wilcox at their head, and secretly supported and encouraged by some disaffected foreigners, made an abortive attempt to emulate the example of the Missionary party by presenting to the King a constitution which would restore the conditions previous to June 30, 1887. The leaders had reckoned without their host. They led a few hundreds of natives to the palace before daylight in the morning, expecting by 7 o’clock they would have several thousands to support them. In this they were disappointed, as the movement was not popular with the Hawaiians generally. And by 8 o’clock those in the palace yard realized their situation and would have gladly surrendered to anyone having authority to demand it.
When the news of the affair spread over town our missionary friends were dismayed, and had no idea of what to do, as there seemed to be little inclination on the part of the public to help them out. However, their old tactics stood them in good service, and by 10 o’clock in the forenoon, by the time-honored trick of promises and coin, they got together a motley body of sharpshooters to attack the comparatively defenseless people in the palace grounds. The attacking party occupied the buildings surrounding the palace yard, and from safe point of vantage began a fusilade fatal to the Kanaka, the missionaries themselves taking the greatest delight in “picking them off,” as Dole and and others of his ilk who participated in the sport expressed it.
If the Hawaiian needed any further proof of the true sentiments cherished for himself by the descendants of the old missionary teachers, the savage alacrity with which they seized the first opportunity to shoot him like a rat in a hole from safe cover would seem to have been sufficient to dispel any remaining doubt.
The general election of 1890 came off in due time, and, as was anticipated, a cold wave swept over the hopes and plans of the revolutionists and left them without a majority in the house. They plainly saw that all their expenditure of time and pains and (what to them was the most heartsickening of all) money was a total, dismal failure, as, with all their talk about free and representative government, they had no grounds for complaint if they could not control the necessary votes. Consequently they immediately began to scheme on a different line, having in view the extinction of the nation, as such, and accordingly laid their plans for annexation to the United States. Just exactly what advantages the saints expected to secure to themselves by such a move is not quite clear when it is remembered that the very essence of the Government of the great republic is that the voice of the majority shall rule.
It can only be presumed that they had their own selfish ends alone in view, as in this respect they had always been thoroughly consistent, and their past history precludes the possibility of supposing that any consideration for the welfare of the nation had cut any figure in their scheme. It has been suggested that the 2 cents per pound bounty made [Page 764]their months water. To imagine this to have been the prompting motive would be to place them on about the same plane of intelligence with the African ostrich with his beak in the sand, or the Irishman who sawed off the limb on which he was standing, between himself and the trunk of the tree. Whatever the true causes may have been which led to this course, the fact remains that they bent their energies with untiring zeal to the accomplishment of the object, and Col. Spalding, Judge Hartwell, and Thurston, each in turn, made special visits to Washington on this errand, with what success the public, of course, never learned; but from later developments there would seem to be reason for believing that the revolutionists’ emissaries found some comforting warmth in the bosom of that statesmanship which conceived, and endeavored to put in force, the peculiar views with regard to the Monroe doctrine a dozen or so years since and the Pan-American scheme of a later date.
As soon as they found that the Queen was not disposed to yield a blind obedience to their bidding the saints transferred to her all the bitter malevolence which they had heaped upon her brother (notwithstanding the fact that she had very lately been so much of a favorite with them that they had seriously contemplated setting her up in his place), and the measure of their vindictiveness knew no bounds. They had cheerfully accepted her always liberal contributions to their church, educational, and charitable objects, and no sacred or social function was complete without her presence, and for years past they had sought her membership of all their benevolent and church societies.
The greatest show of deference and obsequious homage was always made by them all when before her, and no opportunity was lost by any of them to secure invitations to the palace, and they took especial pains, to have strangers understand that they were on the best of terms with the head of the nation. But when their emotional tide turned there was nothing too gross for their devilish ingenuity to lay to her charge. Moral depravity and superstition too coarse for description by any except their own filthy scavengers were imputed to her and paraded in their publications in the most offensive and loathsome manner. As an example of what the motherly members of the Central Union Church have been in the habit of retailing to strangers with regard to her, the following choice bit may serve as a type:
For several years passed the Queen has supported at her own expense upwards of 20 destitute native Hawaiians girls at Kawaiaho and other mission schools, and when they graduated, in many cases, she settled them in life, assisting them in securing homes with suitable husbands. When the saints frowned on her they could see nothing but the most contemptible motives back of her philanthropy, and they did not hesitate to say that the girls were merely supported by the Queen for the sole purpose of being distributed amongst her favorites when their charms were sufficiently developed.
Illustrations like the foregoing might be multiplied indefinitely. The feature most difficult to account for in the attitude of the saints is, that while the Queen might naturally come in for a large share of their ill-will as having been a marplot to their schemes, why should they show hatred for the native Hawaiian race. Their local publications, the Friend, Gazette, Daily Advertiser, etc., seldom appeared without containing some heartless libel or ungenerous slur against the Hawaiians either as individuals or as a race or nation. Descendants of the old stock, such as S. E. Bishop, S. C. Armstrong, H. M. Whitney, W. R. Castle, and a number of others, who screened themselves from identification [Page 765]by writing anonymously-prepared elaborate libels on the Hawaiian people for publication in American periodicals. They worked with the genius of inspiration and the industry of honest men to in every way defame the people for whom one would think they could entertain only the most friendly and generous sentiments to the latest generation.
A notable example of their efforts in this line is the screed prepared by Bishop entitled (See page 3 of pamphlet herewith) “Why are the Hawaiians dying out?” The author endeavored to shield himself from criticism behind the specious pretext of “scientific investigation,” and first made public his diatribe by reading it before one of the numerous admiration societies controlled by the saints in Honolulu, known as the “Social Science Association.” The document is a model of ingenious combination of truth and falsehood, which are sufficiently well interwoven to give a certain air of severe scientific fairness to the heartless production. Affecting a display of analytical acumen, the author proceeds to divide up and classify the reasons for his belief that the final extinction of the Hawaiians (so devoutly hoped for by him and his friends) is near at hand. First amongst the causes selected is “unchastity”—under which heading he tells us that “the Hawaiian female was aggressive in solicitation,” and that this astounding and unseemly peculiarity “was a matter of good form.”
The writer hereof can only say, in reply, that a continuous residence of over forty years in this Kingdom and an intimate association with the natives of every grade from the peasant to the head of the nation has discovered to him no such custom or weakness, and it would seem not unreasonable that the author of the libel should be called upon to raise his hand and make affidavit whether at any time during his long experience—from tender infancy (for unfortunately he was born here) to the hoary old age now vouchsafed to him—he ever met an Hawaiian damsel who had so far forgotten the instincts of womanhood as to voluntarily seek his loathsome embraces. It is altogether unlikely that the aged traducer would face the proposition. The charge coming from this source seems all the more gratuitous when it is remembered that a large number of half-castes of both sexes, ranging from infancy to middle age, throughout the Kingdom are living proofs of the moral weaknesses of some of the annointed and their white descendants.
If the saints prove anything they would seem to prove too much by their continued efforts to belittle the Queen and her race. If she and her people are as bad now as they represent them to be what is to be said of all the prayerful work of the good missionary fathers and mothers during the last seventy years? If their picture is a true one then the million and a half of money, made up from 5 and 10 cent American sabbath-school subscription, together with a few death-bed legacies of Puritan fanatics, which has been expended for the evangelization of the Hawaiians would seem to have been worse than wasted.
The impartial observer is not, however, led to this conclusion. He finds that the Hawaiian has made very commendable progress on the road to civilization during the two and a half generations last past; that for a half century he has had a representative government, which, so far as he himself (the Hawaiian) is concerned, would compare favorably with that of any nation on the face of the globe; that the little Kingdom occupies an honored position in the family of nations, having treaty relations with all the commercial nations of the earth and being a member of the Universal Postal Union, with a representative in the congress at Geneva; that the standard of intelligence amongst the [Page 766]native Hawaiians is higher than that in any other nation in the world, illiteracy being practically unknown: and that, above all, he finds the native Hawaiian a peaceable, law-abiding citizen, not nearly so prone to violence and riot as his white brother. He finds further that, notwithstanding their unfortunate experience with some of the foreign residents in their midst, the people are endowed with a genial friendliness and hospitality, frankness and courtliness of manner, which, in many respects, makes them the peers of any race living, and strikes the granger with wonder who has become familiar with the libelous charges so industriously circulated against the Hawaiians.
Returning to the political attitude of the saints, we find that the arrival of United States Minister Stevens gave a new impulse to their machinations. On his first presentation to the King, he presumed to give His Majesty a lecture in such an offensive manner as to tempt the King to abruptly terminate the interview and to request his recall. Actual rupture on the occasion was, however, narrowly avoided and from this time on the American legation was the rallying point for the missionary annexation party. During the session of the Hawaiian Legislature of 1892, Hartwell, Smith, Castle, Waterhouse, Thurston, Dole, Judd (the chief justice), and other leaders of the party were in the habit of meeting there from time to time to plan the overthrow of the monarchy without endangering their own precious carcasses. They had secured, at no little expense, the services of a cat in 1887 to get the chestnut for them, which through ignorance and carelessness they subquently lost. It had been an expensive and sorrowful lesson to them.
Now if they could only induce Stevens to take the part of the cat in the new venture it would be a great improvement on their first effort. In the first place it would be much less expensive (which to the saints was of prime importance), and in the next place, they imagined that the backing of the United States troops would give greater assurance of success than the undisciplined and ungovernable rabble of volunteers, of whom they had had a disagreeable experience in the times subsequent to their first revolution. Stevens was only too glad of the opportunity to act as the cat, and with a powerful war vessel in command of a willing tool, the setting of the game was easily completed.
The attitude of the American minister and his satellite, the Commander of the U. S. S. Boston, also the clandestine meetings at the American legation above referred to, were matters of public notoriety and as early as August or September of last year it was at first mysteriously hinted and later more openly asserted that the American minister would recognize without delay any movement for the overthrow of the monarchy and would give it the physical support of the men from the Boston, and it was further generally understood and spoken of, that the revolutionary annexationists, with Stevens and Wiltse (the commander of the Boston) at their backs, or more properly in the lead, were only waiting for a favorable opportunity to strike. The opportunity, or excuse, came on the 14th of January, A. D. 1893, culminating in the events of the 16th and 17th days of the same month. The revolutionists proclaimed a Provisional Government from the steps of the Government building at 2:40 o’clock in the afternoon of the last named day, which was immediately recognized by Stevens with the assurance that the new Government would receive the support of the Boston’s men who had been quartered the day before alongside of and in practical possession of the Government building.
The revolutionary annexationists, in justification of their action, have raised the old cry of 1887, of the necessity of stable government, proper [Page 767]representation, honest administration, prevention of riot and bloodshed, maintenance of law and order, etc., when as a matter of fact there is not now, and never has been, the least danger of disorder or opposition to law except at the hands of revolutionists themselves. The rant in the speeches at their meeting in the Rifles’ armory on the 16th of January, and in their “proclamation,” and the mock heroic utterances of Wilder (see Two Weeks of Hawaiian History, pages 15 and 16) when he assumed the chairmanship of the meeting are amongst the poorest examples imaginable of a stale herring drawn across a trail. There has been no fraud discovered nor malfeasance unearthed, nor great wrong righted; on the contrary thefts and spoliations have been committed under the very noses of the Provisional Government with apparent impunity, the probability being that exposure would be disagreeable, as it would be likely to implicate more or less, distinguished members of their own precious crew.
The bald fact stands out in plain view to day, exactly as it did in 1887, that the sole prompting motive of the missionary revolutionists was in both cases a lust of power coupled with a desire to possess themselves of the property of another without giving compensation therefor, sentiments which they enjoy in common with the vulgar highwayman and his more gentlemanly prototype the filibuster. As they could not have held together for an hour without the assistance of the United States officials and forces, the singular spectacle is presented of a United States naval commander in Honolulu protecting a band of filibusters with the forces under his command while they overturn and destroy a Government between which and his own country special treaty relations of amity and commerce were in full force and unimpaired, and at the same date, due east about 5,000 miles as the crow flies, another naval commander, under the same flag, blockades a filibustering force in Key West to prevent it from making a descent on a friendly power. The question naturally arises: Why this difference? What had little Hawaii done that she should merit such treatment?
About 5 o’clock in the afternoon of Monday, the 16th day of January, A. D. 1893, a large detachment of marines and sailors from the United States ship Boston, lying in the harbor of Honolulu, landed without permission or request from the Hawaiian Government, and took position in King street between the Government building and the palace. The United States troops were fully armed and carried double cartridge belts filled with ammunition, also haversacks and canteens, and were accompanied by a Gatling gun battery, also a field hospital corps. Between 7 and 8 o’clock the same evening the force was quartered in the building immediately in rear of the Music Hall, being within half pistol shot, and in practical possession of the Government building.
At the date above mentioned, and for many years immediately preceding the landing of this force, the Hawaiian Kingdom was at peace with all nations. With all the great powers, and with many of the smaller Governments, Hawaii sustained treaty relations which were in full force and effect. This was more especially true in the case of the United States, with whom the most friendly relations of amity and commerce had existed from the date of the first treaty, dated December 23, 1826, to the above-mentioned date, and for whom little Hawaii (rulers and people alike) had always cherished the most friendly feelings. Diplomatic and consular representatives of various countries were accredited to the Hawaiian court and raised the flags of their respective governments in Honolulu. The Hawaiian Government was represented at various capitals and seaports throughout the world by diplomatic [Page 768]and consular agents duly recognized and accepted by the several governments to whom they were accredited by the Hawaiian foreign office.
The Hawaiian Kingdom held an honorable position in the family of nations as an independent government. The courts of justice throughout the Kingdom were disposing of the business brought before them without menace, let, or hindrance. Business of all kinds was being carried on as usual without interruption. The banks, newspaper offices and commercial houses were attending to business in their several lines without unusual incident. Perfect quiet and good order existed throughout the city, there being not even a suggestion of disorder or danger to the life or property of either citizen or alien. A band concert was given at the Hawaiian Hotel at 8 o’clock in the evening, which was largely attended by men, women, and children of all classes, as it was fine weather and near full moon.
At 2:40 o’clock p.m. on the following day, January 17, 1893—nearly twenty-four hours after the American troops landed—thirteen white men, several of them lately arrived in the country and not entitled to vote, appeared in front of the Government building, and the leader proceeded to read a proclamation deposing the Queen and establishing a provisional government. The only audience to this function was composed of a few loungers in the corridors of the building. Near the close of the reading some twenty-seven armed men ran in from the bad and side entrances of the premises and gathered around the thirteen men above mentioned, apparently as supporters of the movement. This supporting force was composed of vagrants and ex-convicts who were at that moment under police surveillance, deserters from merchant ships in port, and the like, only two or three being known as residents of the town. Before the arrival of the thirteen men in front of the Government building the American troops quartered near by (as already described) were under arms; the crews of the Gatlings were handy by their respective places; everything seeming to indicate complete readiness for any emergency.
At the time when the proclamation was being read the Hawaiian Government had 87 regular troops at the barracks, well drilled, officered, and equipped, having a battery of breech-loading field guns and a large supply of extra arms and ammunition for all arms. There was also a very efficient police force, drilled as a military company, and a large supply of arms, equipments, and ammunition, including a Gat-ling gun, with boiler-plate shield, at the station house in Honolulu.
The commander at the barracks and the marshal were ready and anxious to proceed immediately to take the Government building and arrest the parties in possession. But the presence of the American troops, and certain rumors with regard to the attitude of the American minister, caused the Hawaiian cabinet to confer with that official before taking action. They learned from him in writing that he recognized the Provisional Government and would support it with the United States troops.
As any action on the part of the Hawaiian troops or police meant a collision with the United States troops, the cabinet decided to surrender to the United States and await a settlement of the case on a presentation of the facts to the authorities in Washington. The surrender was made about sundown, at which time there had assembled at the barracks over a hundred and fifty members of the old volunteer companies disbanded in 1887 by the Reform cabinet, and between one hundred and fifty and two hundred citizens, accustomed to the use of arms, many of [Page 769]them old soldiers, assembled at the station house, volunteering their services to the marshal. There was an ample supply of arms and ammunition at both the barracks and station house to supply all comers. At the time of the surrender there were, all told, over five hundred men ready and anxious to assist the Hawaiian Government in enforcing law and order.
The foregoing statement of facts can be easily supported by affidavits, if necessary, and would seem to show plainly that the movement can in no sense be justly termed a revolution, but was simply the action of a handful of filibusters made possible only by the active cooperation of the American minister and the American troops, and that the Hawaiian Government was at the time fully prepared and capable of regulating its domestic affairs, maintaining order, and giving ample protection to life and property within its borders. Consequently, as the defiance of Hawaiian laws, the deposition of the sovereign, and the spoliation of the treasury were effected—in fact were only possible—through the active agency of the American officials and troops, it seems but just that a full and complete restoration of affairs to the statu quo of January 16, 1893, previous to the landing of the United States troops, should be made with as little delay as possible, as each day’s delay is adding to the legal and financial complications which will have to be met and composed by the Hawaiian people and their rulers.
Hawaiian Islands, Island of Oahu, ss:
Charles T. Gulick, being duly sworn, on his oath deposes and says, that during the ten years from A. D. 1869 to A. D. 1879 he was chief clerk of the interior department of the Hawaiian Government; that during the period from August 6, 1883, to June 30, 1886, he was minister of the interior of said Hawaiian Government; that during the above-named periods the rolls (or polling lists) of qualified voters for members of the Legislature were returned to said Interior Department; that from the opportunities thus offered for gaining information on the subject, affiant is confident that less than 20 per cent of American and European foreigners (i. e., foreigners other than Asiatics) domiciled in the Kingdom prior to the revolution of 1887 became naturalized under the Hawaiian laws.
Notary Public, Island of Oahu.
WHY ARE THE HAWAIIANS DYING OUT OR ELEMENTS OF DISABILITY FOB SURVIVAL AMONG THE HAWAIIAN PEOPLE?
By Rev. S. E. Bishop.
[Read to Honolulu Social Science Association, November, 1883.]
Mr. Darwin supplied an expression which has been much in vogue, “The survival of the fittest.” This is scarcely applicable in the present case, since in Hawaii there is no competitive “struggle for existence” between weaker and stronger races of men. The Hawaiian Islands have been far more than sufficiently productive for the ample supply of the needs of all the people living here since the beginning of this century. So far all the different races have lived in plenty, and in amity with [Page 770]each other. A crowded condition might be conceived as possible in the future, when the thrifty and capable classes would push the inefficient and improvident classes into penury. In such case, one would think the Chinese to be the best fitted for the “struggle for existence,” and the Polynesian the least fitted. The former inherits an education of hundreds of generations in living on the minimum of necessaries, also an unequaled patience of industry and tactful thriftiness for procuring those necessaries. The latter, thriftless and indolent in comparison, would be crowded out of the land.
No such conditions exist. There is no struggle to find subsistence. One race is as fit to survive as another, so far as obtaining a living is concerned, in a country where the wages of one day’s unskilled labor will purchase all indispensable food and raiment for a whole week. Neither is the climate of Hawaii less favorable to the health of one race than to that of another. It is comparatively a perfect climate, absolutely devoid of extremes of temperature, free from humidity, swept by the ever purging ocean airs, and seemingly incapable of long harboring malarial or zymotic diseases. Possibly an Esquimaux might not thrive here. For all other races it is an Eden in salubrity.
Yet it is the strange fact—in view of the amiable and attractive qualities of Polynesians, the distressingly sad fact that, simultaneously with the arrival of white men in these islands, the Hawaiian people began rapidly to melt away, and that this waste has continued up to the present with substantial steadiness. At the date of the discovery, Captain Cook estimated the population at 400,000. Later historians have leaned to the more moderate estimate of 250,000. My father who was one of the first party of white men to travel around Hawaii in 1824, then observed such evidences of recent extensive depopulation in all parts of that island that he very decidedly supported the estimate of Cook. There are now less than 40,000 pure Hawaiians surviving. The later counts have been taken with reasonable accuracy.
One is led to suspect that the earlier ones omitted considerable numbers, when one observes the comparative sparseness of native population in every district, as compared with the relatively dense population fifty years ago, when only 125,000 were counted, or little more than three times the present number. With the exception of the towns of Honolulu, Hilo, and Wailuku, every large and populous town in the islands has dwindled to a hamlet since my boyhood, and the then frequent and considerable hamlets scattered everywhere, have almost all disappeared. The recollections of fifty years since are of throngs and swarms of natives everywhere. Yet even then all the talk was of how the islands had become depopulated; even then, in traveling, the deserted sites of villages and hamlets with abandoned plantations were constantly pointed out. Have we now one in six of the ancient numbers of natives, or have we only one in ten. It is immaterial; the fact remains of an enormous depopulation.
And yet, in the total absence of any struggle for existence, all the more or less civilized races migrating here appear to thrive and multiply abundantly, and the children surpass their children in health and stature. At first sight these foreigners do not average as equal to the Hawaiian. The Chinaman is vastly his inferior in strength, in stature, in symmetry, and in apparent soundness. But the Chinaman lives and propagates, while the Hawaiian dies easily, and leaves few or no offsprings. The Caucasian also comes with his family and multiplies amain.
The query then is, under what peculiar disabilities does the Hawaiian labor, as to vitality and power of propagation, from which the foreign races living here are exempt? This inquiry is farther complicated by the fact that these disabilities, whatever they are, seem to have first sprung into efficiency upon contact with the white race. The coming of that race appears to have introduced new deleterious influence, and created new conditions, under which the Polynesian, somewhere weak, succumbs. We are to seek to clearly define what these unfavorable conditions are, and wherein the weakness of the native race to withstand these adverse influences, consists.
I here limit our inquiry to the Hawaiians, because with this people only do we possess any intimate acquaintance. A similar state of things prevails more or less throughout Polynesia, and ultimate extinction appears to threaten the native population of most of the groups of Polynesia. We are to endeavor to define the precise causes of depopulation. We should strive to indicate exactly what adverse influences have been steadily at work for five generations to kill off the Hawaiian people. There has been a great deal of vague generalization—of indefinite talk about a weak race succumbing to the stronger. We want to quit vagueness and generalities, and find the answer to the question, “In what respects, particularly and precisely, are the Hawaiian people weaker than their white, or their Mongoloid guests?” This will prepare us for the further inquiry, by what means can this weak race be so invigorated that it will again multiply? Our first effort—perchance unskilled and misdirected, is to diagnose the deadly malady which is slaying the people.[Page 771]
As the leading and most efficient element of weakness in the Hawaiian race, tending to physical decay, we predicate:
Unchastity.*—This has always been general among females as well as males. The Hawaiian female was, like males of other races, aggressive in solicitation. It was matter of good form that all proposals should be expressed by the female. It is still so, except to the extent that foreign ideas have permeated society. The records of Cook’s discovery of the group indicate that state of things as originally existing. The account written by Dr. Ellis, Cook’s chief surgeon, states how at Kauai, where they first touched, Captain Cook was determined, on account of serious disease among his men, to permit no intercourse with the women, so as not to introduce disease among the Hawaiians. It was, however, impracticable to prevent the women from swarming over the ships. The native account received from participants by the early missionaries, states that it was arranged in public council that the women should take this course, as the easiest way of obtaining iron and other prized articles from the ships.
Proceeding from Niihau to Alaska, and returning nine months later, Cook’s ships made the coast of Hamakua, Hawaii. He again sought to keep the women from his crew, but discovered that they were already infected with the malady. So promiscuous were the habits of the people, that from the first center of infection at Waimea, the malady had in nine months, spread like a fire to the other extremity of the group. This, again, is corroborated by the information obtained by the early missionaries as to the spread of the disease. Dr. Ellis describes, in words undesirable to here reproduce, the grossly aggressive and impetuous action of the females.
It was the universal practice of ordinary hospitality to visitors to supply them during their sojourn with the women of the family. Such a matter-of-course tender was a frequent cause of annoyance to the early missionaries in their tours in remoter districts, enjoying the cordial hospitality of the most well-to-do poople, in their neat thatched cottages. I am not prepared, to say how far this heathen custom has now lapsed into disuse. It is certainly one of the old customs sought to be maintained and revived together with the hulas and idolatrous practices. One of the painful experiences of missionaries in the out districts, was to hear of this practice being carried out in the chief households of his paiish when some great man came along with his suite. I speak from repeated personal experience as a missionary pastor.
It maybe said in general that chastity had absolutely no recognition. It was simply a thing unknown and unthought of as a virtue in the old domestic life of Hawaii. A woman who withheld herself was counted sour and ungracious. This did not exclude more or less of marital proprietorship, involving an invasion of the husband’s right in enjoying his property without his consent. There was no impurity in it any more than among brute animals.
There was, however, a salutary limitation of some importance in a frequent stringent guarding of early virginity. Young maidens were quite commonly put under tabu for first use by the chief, after possession by whom all restriction ceased. No sense of a sacredness in chastity seems to have been involved in this, nor any sense of profanation in the contrary. It was only the thought of a special choiceness in an article that was fresh and unused. In the tremendous disturbances of life ensuing upon the advent of the white man, even this solitary restriction perished.
No severe moral reprobation is due to the primitive Hawaiian for what seems to have been an ignorant innocence of easy, promiscuous living, like the free life of animals, without sense of evil. None the less must we deem this social condition more than any other to have incapacitated the Hawaiians from holding their own after the advent of the white man. During the simplicity of aboriginal life, and in the total absence of sexual diseases, the evils resulting from promiscuous intercourse would be minimized. Procreative force remained largely in excess of mortality, so that the teeming population was kept down by infanticide. But to them a lady which the white man imported, the unguarded social condition was as tow to the flame. The scorching and withering disease ran like wildfire through the nation. Multitudes died at once, while the survivors remained with poisoned bodies and enfeebled constitutions.
A general impairment of constitutional vigor in the people by venereal disease caused them to fall early victims to other maladies, both native and foreign. All diseases ran riot in their shattered constitutions. They became especially incapacitated to resist pulmonary maladies. The greatly increased prevalence of colds and consumption is doubtless due to this syphilitic diathesis rather than to change of habits as to clothing, although the latter may have had some unfavorable effect. Probably the pestilence called Okuu, whatever its nature, which carried off such a bulk of the population in 1804, owed most of its virulence to the impaired physique of the people.[Page 772]
Another destructive effect of the syphilitic taint is believed to have been as inflaming of sexual passion. It may have acted as a ferment thrown into the former more quiet pool of promiscuous social living. There can be no doubt that the advent of foreigners in large numbers was attended by an immense increase of debased and bestial living. Ten thousand reckless seamen of the whaling fleet annually frequented these islands and used it as their great brothel. This enormously aggravated and inflamed the normal unchastity of the people. In the presence of the white hordes life became hideously brutalized. To multitudes of young women, gathered into the seaports for profit, iron half the households in the country, life became a continuous orgie of beastly excess. All the former slender limitations and restrictions upon an indiscriminate commerce fell to pieces. The stormy and reckless passion of the white man, exulting in his unwonted license, imparted itself to the warm but sluggish Hawaiian nature. Life became a wasteful riot of impurity, propagated from the seaports to the end of the land. There was thus no defense against the new and trying conditions of life through any existing sentiment of the sacredness of chastity. The inevitable consequence was depopulation. The population of brothels and slums has no internal power of multiplying.
In the report on the subject of purity, adopted by the 144 bishops convened in the late Pan-Anglican Conference at Lambeth Palace, are the following words: “We solemnly record our conviction that wherever marriage is dishonored, and sins of the flesh are lightly regarded, the home life will be destroyed, and the nation itself will sooner or later decay and perish.” The source of this language will lend it great weight. The Hawaiian nation is a sad witness to their truth.
One of the most destructive consequences of the new physical taint was the enfeeblement of infancy, rendering it difficult for the diseased babes to survive the ignorant and careless dealing of their nurses. The largest increase in the mortality of the Hawaiians was undoubtedly among their infants. The external influences adverse to infant survival among Hawaiians are very great. Chief among these are the practice of feeding with unsuitable nutriment in early infancy, the prevalence of unchecked cutaneous maladies, general lack of watchful care, and evil doses administered by ignorant or superstitious friends. Healthy and vigorous infants, as of the old times, would in good numbers survive all these hostile conditions. Those born into the taint of syphilis, with its inward and outward corrosions, had little prospect of surviving other maltreatments, unless some missionary or other beneficent foreigner came to their aid with his simple regimen and alleviations.
Under this general head of unchastity, as the chief cause of the depletion of the race, a considerable share must be attributed to the extensive loss of procreative power in the males. This loss was probably due in part to syphilitic taint, but is mainly owing to early sexual excess during puberty. In the aboriginal condition there would seem to have been less tendency to very early indulgence among the males. The nervous irritations of the syphilitic taint and the exciting excesses pervading native society may have been causes extending debauching influences even to the children. It is certain that in many districts deplorable excesses have been found to exist among the school children. It seems to be true that a majority of young Hawaiian men never have children. Those placed early under the discipline of foreigners, in boarding schools or otherwise, show exceptions to the common rule. The incapacity seems to be mainly on the part of the males. Young women united to Chinamen or white men are usvally quite as fruitful as women of other races. Per contra, it is to be noted that such men are apt to select the best-Conditioned females, also that they are accustomed to restrain and to protect their wives, as Hawaiians do not, and so keep them in healthier condition.
The common record of Hawaiian families is few or no children born, or perhaps several born, most or all of whom die in infancy. It is exceedingly rare to find a large family surviving to adult age. Nearly all such that I have known were families under the immediate and very parental control of some missionary, with whom the parents had lived from early youth, learning habits of industry, self-control, and civilized domestic living. They were themselves kept in vigor and health, their children were well cared for, and well doctored in sickness. Natives so situated very frequently not only raised large families, but by means of their superior industry, skill, and thrift acquired considerable substance. Being thereby placed in a high social rank among their countrymen, it has too commonly resulted that most of their children became dissolute, like the children of the wealthy elsewhere, and the family failed to be continued.
Among other disastrous effects of the universal syphilitic taint was the frequency of miscarriages. It has been the testimony of missionaries and physicians that a very considerable proportion of native births have been prevented by that cause. In my inquiries in native households this has been assigned as frequently as any other as the cause of the absence of children. To make such inquires is indeed melancholy. One becomes glad to hear that even one or two children are surviving in a household.[Page 773]
Abortion is often attributed to active horseback exercise during pregnancy. As native females used to be continually galloping about, no doubt this has contributed to the evil since 1850, when the common people began generally to possess horses. With the developement of good roads, wheels are now coming into very common use by all classes.
Drunkenness.—This should be assigned to no inconsiderable place among disabling conditions. Before the haole arrived the favorite narcotic was awa (piper methysticum), more commonly known throughout Oceanica as kava. A beer of some strength was made by fermenting sweet potato. The sirupy Ki-root (Dracœna Ti) was also macerated and fermented, becoming still more alcoholic than the potato. This was less acceptable, tending to produce irascibility, while the sour-potato swill only inflamed sexuality. No great orgies of drunkenness resulted from the use of any of the foregoing. The vice existed only in mild forms. Awa in excess tended to waste and paralyze the system.
With the foreigner came the products of the still. Only then did drunkenness begin to reign. Drunken orgies were an essential part of the beach-comber’s paradise on Hawaiian shores. He found the Hawaiian an apt disciple, save that, like all savages, he did not know how to stop. The story of the early missionaries is one of constant impediment in their labors from the inebrity of the King and chiefs and of frequent annoyance and disturbance from the riotous orgies of the common people. While Kamehameha lived he put considerable check upon both his people and him-self as to temperance. His youthful successor, Liholiho, plunged, with his people, into a carnival of excess.
The contribution of drunkenness to depopulation was mainly indirect, although powerful. It tended to overturn and destroy whatever remains of wholesome social order and domestic life survived the general wreck consequent upon foreign intercourse. It stimulated the passions; it solved the remaining bonds of self-restraint; it flung prudence to the winds; thus it enhanced the effectiveness of the causes previously described. Intemperance is always a chief ally of impurity. The gin-mill and the brothel are close partners.
- Oppression of the chiefs.—There was a considerable mortality during the first quarter of this century, when the sandal-wood trade was active, caused by the heavy exactions of the King and chiefs upon the common people to procure this precious commodity wherewith to liquidate their immense debts to the traders, incurred for yachts and costly luxuries. Great numbers of men were driven into the mountains upon this errand, passing many nights in cold and rain with slight protection and little food. The result was great waste of life and the almost entire extirpation of the precious tree. Other severe exactions of labor were common. Great levies of labor and supplies were frequently made at a chief’s caprice from the tenants of remote estates, to be brought to the island capital. This was an evil much increased by the temptations of foreign trade. No doubt it materially contributed to the decimation of the people. Oppression by chiefs has ceased to be an operative cause for nearly half a century, or since constitutional government began to exist.
Infectious and epidemic diseases.—These have largely added to the destruction of the population. There seems to be good reason for accepting the theory that new diseases attack with more severity and greater fatality races who are unaccustomed to them or to their like. No doubt any race becomes in time somewhat hardened to the diseases which infest it, the weaker and more susceptible individuals being weeded out, and the hardier ones transmitting their resisting power to descendants.
Measles first appeared here in 1849. Great numbers died in all parts of the group. The excess of mortality was attributed to the patients’ bathing in order to alleviate the external heat and irritation of the malady.
Smallpox first arrived in 1853. Before vaccination could be efficiently administered to the natives the infection had spread over the island of Oahu, and one-half, or 15,000, of the people on that island, perished in a few weeks. After their manner they rushed to visit their friends when attacked by the disease. Isolation and precaution against infection is foreign to their natures. By the energy of the then “missionary” Government quarantine measures were vigorously enforced on the other islands, and the people thoroughly vaccinated, so that only a few hundred deaths occurred. Foreigners were all promptly vaccinated, and nearly all escaped.
Malarial and. other epidemics have been repeatedly introduced, and from time to time have produced extensive mortality among the natives. The admirable climate, with its sea air and the ozone of the mountain land breezes, seemed in each case rapidly to mitigate the virulence with which earlier cases of the new malady would be characterized, later cases assuming milder forms, until the disease seemed to slowly die out. This was very marked in the instance of what was known as the “boo-hoo” fever, which attacked all newly arrived foreigners. It was quite severe at its first appearance in 1851, but by 1857 had become a very trifling malady.[Page 774]
Leprosy has been something of a scourge. Probably 4,000 lepers have died in these Islands during the past thirty years. The number at present suffering from the disease can not be more than 1,500, or 4 per cent of the native population. For more than a year, or since the end of 1887, there has been a radical improvement in the work of segregating the lepers. There seems reason to believe that soon nearly every leper will have been removed to the excellent asylum at Molokai. The lepers are nearly all natives. The disease very rarely appears among the white or the Mongolian races living here, owing to their carefully avoiding intercourse with lepers. Hawaiians, on the contrary, mingle freely with lepers in the most intimate daily intercourse. They commonly regard the segregation of their leprous relatives as a cruel and uncalled-for severity. This is only one illustration of the habitual indifference of this people to sanitation, whether in physics or in morals.
Indeed, the idea of disease being a product of natural agencies and a thing to be averted by physical preventives, seems to be one quite foreign to the Hawaiian’s mind and contrary to his mode of thought. In common with other uncivilized races the world over they were accustomed to attribute all diseases to the immediate agency of some personal demon, who enters the patient and malignantly distresses and destroys him. This brings us to another and one of the most destructive of the agencies contributing to the diminution of the Hawaiian people.
Kahunas and sorcery.—The kahuna is the medicine man. He is properly a sorcerer or wizard, whose chief reliance for the relief of disease is the employment of supernatural agencies although he will also perhaps use drugs and hygienic treatment. From ancient times these men and their arts have been powerful agencies of death, although not seldom effecting a species of “faith cure.” When a Hawaiian is ill, his superstitious relatives and friends immediately seek to persuade him that his sickness is owing to the malign presence of some demon, who must either be propitiated or expelled by force. Some kahuna is called in to accomplish this object. He is believed to enjoy special power with some patron demon, who may be the one needing to be propitiated, or whose agency may be called in to expel and overcome the perhaps less powerful agent of the disease. If one kahuna proves insufficient to the task others must be found who possess the special influence needed. The processes employed are always expensive to the patient, and very commonly quite severe.
There are sacrifices of pigs and fowls; there are complex incantations. There are doubtless various efforts allied to mesmeric or hypnotic phenomena. Violent sweatings and purgings are frequently used to promote the expulsion of the demon, with great physical severities of different kinds, such as often are of themselves fatal to the patient. The tension of anxiety and dread is terrible and very weakening. A great mortality results directly from this violent and terrifying treatment. Furthermore, there is a large mortality caused by pure mental apprehension where no disease originally existed. The sufferer is told that a sorcerer is at work against him; he at once sickens, and is prostrated, and soon dies. Or he is solemnly warned by a learned kahuna that he has symptoms of dangerous disease impending. Or he is conscious of having committed some act, such as the violation of a vow, which has offended the family deity, or aumakua, and through mental apprehension, the same effect of sickening ensues. All these things play into the hands of the medicine man, bring him dupes and victims, increase his revenue, and multiply the mortality of the people. It is difficult to determine to what extent these superstitious agencies are still at work. There is a painful reason to believe that their activity has been greatly revived of late years. There is much ground for thinking that a large proportion of the more intelligent and educated Hawaiians, when they fall ill, are prone to succumb to the inherited superstition. It is commonly remarked that the Hawaiian, when sick, shows a strange lack of recuperative power. He dies easily. He becomes depressed and surrenders where other men would recover. Probably in most such cases the cause is his superstitious belief in a demon whom he feels working at his vitals and whom it is hopeless to resist.
Idolatry.—This is intimately connected with the above-named agency. Its chief importance, however, in this discussion, is in its character as the most efficient of all the agencies that disorder the mental and debase the moral action of the people, and which frustrate, and neutralize remedial influences. It resembles drunkenness in this respect, but I think very far exceeds it in its evil ethical efficiency.
All thinkers, of whatever creed or type of skepticism, consider a people’s religion to have an immense formative power upon them. The institutions, the customs, and the conduct of a people are certain to be shaped and patterned, in a great degree, after whatever embodiments of moral ideals they believe in, such as deified heroes, and deities of whatever sort whom they fear and worship. If the gods of any nation, like those of early Egypt, are understood to exercise substantial justice, to reward virtue, purity, and temperance, and to punish vice, treachery, and cruelty, such a nation will continue to cherish the higher and to despise the baser qualities. Righteousness has the sanction of religion, and the nation grows and prospers. The Polytheisms of Egypt, of Greece, of Rome, of Chaldea, in their earlier and less corrupted [Page 775]forms, exalted much of the higher elements of character; hence a good degree of civilization became possible under these religions. This was also time of the earlier Brahminism of the Vedas. There is strong evidence that these religions were all corruptions from an original Monotheism, retaining something of that earlier religious recognition of the righteousness and benevolence of the Heaven-Father, the Dyaus-Pitar, Zeus-Pater, or Jupiter of the Aryan races. It is most noticeable how, from debased races, these nations imported successively the worship of evil gods—the Baals, Molochs, Astartes, Kalis, gods of lust, cruelty, falsehood, debauchery. These fastened as parasites upon the earlier and cleaner Polytheisms, and so corroded and poisoned the social and political life of those great nations.
Whether, as Fornander maintains, any traces of an ancient monotheism can be discerned in the Polynesian Pantheon, may be considered doubtful. It is certain, however, that the prevailing characteristics attributed to even the highest gods, such as Fornander’s Trinity of Ku, Kane, and Kanaloa, were wretchedly evil and unclean. There are not merely strong tendencies to animalism and cruelty, with frequent lapses into crimes of lust and revenge, such as disfigure Greek mythology. These gods of the Hawaiians become absolute embodiments of bestiality and mallignity, like Moloch and other gods of the Canaanites.
The impure and malignant essence of Hawaiian deities is visibly embodied in their images. In contrast to the personal beauty of the Greek gods, the aim and the effort of the carver is to depict an extreme of malignity and sensuality. The lineaments are made as revolting and horrific as the artist can combine them from vicious types of animal savagery, such as the shark or the boar. The first impression is a just one, that a people who worshiped such deities as these images represent could not be otherwise than profoundly perverted in their ethical sentiments.
The various legends of the chief gods abound in attributes of the most excessive-bestiality. They are generally incapable of, being printed without extensive expurgation. A loathsome filthiness is not mere incident, but forms the groundwork of character, not merely of the great hog-god Kamapuaa, but even of the more humanlike Ku and Kane of the chief Trinity.
The moral ideas of the worshipers of such gods could not fail to suffer extreme perversion. Justice and purity were in contempt. Cruelty and lust were exalted into religion. The late Matthew Arnold, eliminating personality from the idea of the-God of Christendom, defined Deity as “The stream of tendency in the universe that makes for righteousness.” If we could eliminate these horrific personalities from the Hawaiian Pantheon, we might well count the ideal residuum to stand for the stream of tendency that makes for all wickedness. It was an embodied diabolism.
As a shaping force upon character, and a moving force upon conduct, this diabolic religion takes its energy from sorcery. Sorcery brings these evil gods down as living active powers interposing in all circumstances of life. By the arts of the kahunas the people were held, and, to a considerable extent, are still held, in habitual fear of these powerful gods and their subordinate demons. Their lives are continually threatened by them, Every internal sense of illness is the deadly touch, sensibly felt, of a god. So the people were held in abject slavery to their gods, and to the priests who could influence them. Slaves to such unclean beings, they tend to be like them; their moral sentiments are overturned; evil becomes good, and good evil. Lewdness, prostitution, indecency, drunkenness, being god-like are exalted into virtues. Recent practical illustrations of this are not lacking.
One of the foul florescences of the great poison tree of idolatry is the hula. This is most intimately connected with the whole system, and forms an essential part of its services, just as sacred music does of Christian worship. The hula dances are habitually idolatrous in practice, having their special patron gods, whom the dancers invoke and worship. The chief posturings and movements of the hulas are pantomimes of unnameable lewdness, illustrated and varied with elaborate art, and accompanied with chants of unspeakable foulness of diction and description. This is the sacred music of idolatry, its opera and its drama. The multitudes of men, women, and children who throng to these royal hula operas there drink in the heathen ethics of social life in unmitigated directness and grossness, made sensational with vivid pantomime of beastliness, and embellished with foul wit and jest in song, extolling and dramatizing impurity. Against such schooling, it must be a powerful civilizing force that can make head and redeem any Hawaiian homes from becoming brothels.
- Wifeless Chinese.—This is an evil of recent growth, which acts most perniciously upon the social life of Hawaiians. There are some 20,000 Chinamen of the lowest class, without their women, distributed throughout the islands in close contact with the natives, and in many districts outnumbering the Hawaiian males. The effect is necessarily very destructive to the purity of native families, although not more so than the presence of a similar number of unmarried whites would be. There is no doubt but that many native households in all parts of the country are maintained in comparative affluence by the intimacy of Chinese with their females. [Page 776]Some of the heads of these families are members in good standing in the Protestant churches, whose easy-going native pastors lack the energy and authority to deal with the offenders, while the moral sentiment prevailing both within and outside of the church is too feeble to put them to shame.
The catalogue of destructive elements making for the death of the Hawaiian people, as enumerated above, is an appalling one. It certainly suffices to account for any amount of infertility and mortality. On the other hand there are many sanative and restorative agencies at work which inspire hope for the repression of these evils and afford prospect for the reinforcement and augmentation of healing agencies. I briefly name some of the most efficient:
Government medical aid.—Paid physicians are within reach of most of the people, whose services to them are free of charge. Their help should save many more lives than they do, or than they will, so long as the people are taught idolatry and to trust in the kahunas. It is not in itself a very easy thing for a skilled physician to gain the confidence of the native people in the degree that he needs for any considerable success. It is nearly impossible for him to do so, when contending as he generally is with active superstition in the minds of his patients and their friends, and with the army of kahunas working with all their arts against him. His prescriptions will very commonly be neglected and his injunction disobeyed.
I have not the slightest doubt that a hearty reception by the Hawaiian people of the medical aid now provided, discarding their kahunas, would at once cause births to preponderate over deaths.
- Hygienic instruction.—There has been a great deal of instruction given upon the laws of health and simple remedial treatment in the schools and churches and by means of books. Dr. Judd’s translation of Cutter’s Anatomy and Physiology was printed nearly fifty years ago and used as a text-book in the leading high school. Such instruction has done great service. It has proved insufficient, however, to make head against the inveterate belief in the supernatural cause of disease. It is likely to continue inadequate, so long as the kahunas are encouraged to ply their arts.
School education.—Book knowledge, and even the much vaunted education in English, have sadly failed to arm Hawaiians against succumbing to superstition and its kindred impurity, either in the ranks of the lowly or the lofty.
Domestic and industrial training in boarding schools has accomplished much more, and is doing excellent work for both sexes by their practical training in the ethics, the conduct, and the industry of Christian civilization. Several hundred youth of each sex are now enjoying the advantages of such schools conducted by Protestants, Anglicans, and Catholics. Adversely, the youth who go out of these schools are at once plunged into a sea of indescribable temptation. Yet much of our best hopes for the future of the race is in the increasing numbers of these well-trained Hawaiians. They tend to form an elevated and civilized social class of their own. This is opposed and disintegrated by a Hawaiian social leadership, whose tendencies are all adverse.
- Christian instruction will continue to be regarded by earnest believers in Christianity as the chief effective agency in healing the nation’s maladies. They hold that faith in Christ has power to emancipate from fear of demon-gods; they believe that the implanting of the high ideal of righteousness, of which Jesus of Nazareth is the source, will in the end erect in all minds a standard of integrity and purity which will be more effectual than anything else in securing moral and healthy living among the people. Probably the most of the many true and earnest friends of right living who do not accept the supernatural element of Christian doctrine would agree that for the Hawaiian, in his present mental stage of development, such a faith would be a more efficient antidote than any scientific or philosophical teaching could be.
If it be asked why sixty-eight years of Christian teaching has not availed to lift the Hawaiian people out of the mire of impure living if it be thus efficacious, its teachers would point to the great increase of adverse influences for the last thirty years and to the direct fostering of sorcery and hulas by authority during that time, and latterly to the promotion of hardly concealed worship of the gods. They would also point to the immense growth of foreign elements whose unfavorable influence has been illustrated in the case of the Chinese. They would also call special attention to the fact that during the period of powerful missionary ascendency, say from 1833 to 1853, while nearly the whole people became nominal adherents of Christianity, only a minority become actual members of the churches, while the great majority, although outwardly assenting, remained wedded to their habitual vice and secretly to their superstitions, and that the more Christian minority gave place by heath to another generation far less strongly impressed and less fervid in religious interest.
In accordance with the foregoing statement of facts, as I clearly understand them, and whose substantial correctness I think can not be gainsaid, there seems to be no radical remedy for the two great causes of infertility and mortality, viz, unchastity [Page 777] and sorcery, except a system of vigorously extirpating those two allied agencies in which they generate and are nourished, the hulas and the kahunas. Both are purely heathen institutions of the most pronounced and detestible type, and are totally incompatible with any true and wholesome civilization. They should both be hunted down and exterminated like the venomous reptiles that they are, poisoning and slaying the people. Until this is done with determined thoroughness I see little prospect of arresting the decrease of the Hawaiian people.
The Hawaiian race is one that is well worth saving. With all their sad frailties, they are a noble race of men physically and morally. They are manly, courageous, enterprising, cordial, generous, unselfish. They are highly receptive of good. They love to look forward and upward, even though very facile to temptations to slide backward and downward. In an unusual degree they possess a capacity for fine and ardent enthusiasm for noble ends. Should the Hawaiian people leave no posterity, a very sweet, generous, interesting race will have been lost to the world. They can be saved. They have deserved too well of mankind—they have been too kindly, too friendly, too trustful and magnanimous not to merit the most devoted efforts to avert their threatening fate and to set them forward in a hopeful course. It seems as if this might most easily be accomplished if there were only a wise and resolute purpose to do it.
TWO WEEKS OF HAWAIIAN HISTORY.
(A brief sketch of the revolution of 1893. Illustrated. Honolulu, Hawaiian Islands. Published by the Hawaiian Gazette Company, 1893.]
A Brief Sketch of the Hawaiian Revolution of 1893.
The course of Hawaii’s political development has in general been peaceful. Under the reign of Kamehameha III the fundamental changes in social organization, in the private rights of individuals, in the tenure of land, and in the constitution of government were effected without disturbunce or bloodshed. The reign of the third Kamehameha witnessed the beginning and the completion of the great series of changes which transformed Hawaii from a feudal and savage despotism into a free and civilized state. Without the cordial cooperation of an enlightened monarch these reforms could not have been, as they were, speedily and peacefully effected.
With the failure of the Kamehameha line, a change came over the spirit of the monarchy, and the new dynasty refused to walk in the footsteps of the old. The sound sense which had tempered the despotic spirit of Kamehameha V was wanting to Kalakaua, and his reign brought with it a long series of extravagances and abuses which finally exhausted the patience of the people. The uprising of 1887 resulted in the promulgation of a new and more liberal constitution, but the patience and moderation of the people gave to royalty one last chance, and left the monarchy standing.
Five years of bitter experience under the new regime have proved that the revolution of 1887 had one fatal fault. It did not go far enough. The constitution which it secured was indeed liberal, its guarantees of political and private right appeared sufficient, it seemed to introduce a system of government, for and by the people, responsible to the people. Had the throne been filled by a ruler like Kamehameha III, the expectations founded upon the new instrument would not have been disappointed and Hawaii might perhaps have continued for a generation to enjoy the substantial blessings of prosperity and freedom under a monarchical form of government. The constitution was, however, so drawn that a willful and stiff-necked sovereign might easily obstruct its-workings. Immemorial usage had neither defined its intent nor fixed its meaning beyond the reach of quibbling subterfuge and cavil. White men were found to misinterpret its provisions, and pervert its plain meanings in the interest absolutism. The closing years of Kalakaua were occupied with a stubborn resistence by the King to his cabinet, and while the opening days of Liliuokalani gave birth to fairer hopes, it was soon obvious that the Queen had all the despotic instincts of her brother, with far more than his tenacity of will. She was determined to govern by herself without consulting the will of the people, and had no idea of accepting the rôle of the constitutional head of a free state.
Such is a brief sketch of the events which serve as a prologue to the revolutionary drama which was soon to be enacted. This can not be fully understood, however, without an account of the events, or rather, of the secret intrigues, which led to the downfall of the Wilcox cabinet.[Page 778]
events immediately preceding the revolution.
The Wilcox cabinet was appointed November 8, but it was not until about Christmas time that rumors commenced to circulate in town, that the relations existing between the Queen and her cabinet were not as smooth as they might be. She had attempted to dictate to them, an interference which they resented, and the first rumors were that she wanted to get rid of her cabinet on the pretense that they were under the influence of the American and Annexation party, fearing that if they remained in power after the prorogation of the Legislature she would be sure to lose her throne. These fancies were found to have been instilled into her mind by the opium and spoils ring which had been making such a fight for existence during the term of the legislative session. The leaders of this ring were clever enough to perceive that their influence with the Queen lay in using the marshal as a cloak for their designs, and, making friends with him, they held the key to the situation. But they still lacked strength, and cast about for means to carry out their designs. Some self seekers joined their ranks, and the Queen now commenced to take an active part in affairs, and her minions, notably Captain Nowlein, of her guard, were in constant communication with the native members of the House.
The Queen’s legal advisers were in constant consultation with her, and engaged in the preparation of a new constitution. At the same time the lottery bill was revived and used as a lever, and promises of money payments for the passage of the first, second, and third reading of appointments as agents in the several districts and of blocks of stock soon brought a change over the native members. The Queen was now engaged in making personal appeals to these members, cases being reported of her fortifying her entreaties with tears. She sent for prominent white members whom she thought she could influence and asked outright for their support against her ministers. Expostulations were in vain, and she showed her determination to brook no delay; still not much fear as to the stability of the cabinet was felt, as without C. O. Berger’s vote she could not secure the necessary 25. It was clearly explained to Mr. Berger what her actions meant, and he was told who would constitute a new cabinet if she succeeded in getting the Wilcox one out, and he promised not to lend his assistance to such schemes. He was advised to consult his father-in-law (Mr. Widemann), and it is a notable fact that after doing so Mr. Berger went to the Palace, and to the consternation of the ministerial supporters, appeared in the House after swearing he would never go near it again during the session. The 25 votes necessary to pass a resolution of want of confidence were thus obtained, and on Thursday, January 12, at 3 o’clock in the afternoon, the Wilcox ministry was voted out of office.
The downfall of the cabinet was received with universal disgust throughout the community, but when the following day the places of the ministers were supplied by the Parker-Peterson-Colburn-Cornwell cabinet, the disgust was seasoned with indignation of the strongest kind. The universal feeling found, however, only peaceable expression, and none thought of anything but law-abiding acquiesence in the change, fraught with injury to the public interest though it was known to be.
the first day.
Saturday, the 14th of January, 1893, dawned clear and beautiful, and no one dreamed that it was to be one of the eventful days of Hawaiian history. The prorogation of the Legislature was to take place at noon, and the members opposed to the new cabinet, though they absented themselves from the ceremony, had no idea of attempting anything against the ministry. It did not seem possible that the Queen, after having gained everything for which she had been striving, would imperil her gains by violating the constitution. And yet she did.
Saturday afternoon, between 1 and 2 o’clock, the community was startled by the information that a coup d’état was in progress, and that the Queen was endeavoring to force her cabinet to sign a new constitution, which she then proposed to promulgate immediately to the people. The information was at first disbelieved by some, but it was speedily confirmed.
The political changes of the past few days, the renewed vote of want of confidence, the secret attempt made by the Queen to secure the overthrow of her ministers, her secret interviews with Noble Dreier and others, the signing of the opium and lottery bills, coupled with the rabid talk of certain native members in the house, had produced a feeling of great unrest in the community. The remarks of Kamauoha in the house were felt by some to give a hint as to what was to be looked for in the future, and many shared these forebodings. On Saturday morning rumor [Page 779]was busy, and it was freely stated that a new constitution was to be promulgated in the afternoon. At a meeting of business men, held in the room of the chamber of commerce, reference was made to this possibility, but still it was not generally believed until in the afternoon the unexpected happened, and doubt was transformed into certainty.
Three days before the coup d’état was attempted, a gentleman who enjoys the confidence of the Queen told one of the members of the newly appointed cabinet (who was then in private station) that the blow was to be struck, and that the persons of the ministers would be secured. In the anticipation that the new cabinet would not make any resistance to the revolutionary blow, the precaution of arresting them was not taken. Saturday morning one of the ministers received positive information that a blow was to be struck that afternoon. He immediately proceeded to consult two prominent citizens on the course to be taken. After a conference, the gentlemen referred to advised the cabinet to refuse to sign a new constitution and to decline to resign if their resignations should be demanded. The prorogation of the legislature was the last chapter in the story of the morning. It went off tamely and quietly enough, but those who were acquainted with the real situation felt that the Government and the nation were sleeping on the crest of a volcano.
In the afternoon, immediately after the Legislature had been prorogued, the Hui Kalaiaina (a native Hawaiian political society), marched over to the palace in order to present a new constitution to the Queen, with the petition that the same be promulgated to the people as the fundamental law of the land. The matter of the new constitution and petition had been prearranged, and there was little spontaneity about it. It really originated with the Queen and a few of her adherents. Activity had been noted for several days among some of the native retainers of Her Majesty. Several have since stated that they were ordered to appear before her and ask for a new constitution. One case particularly worthy of note is that of an old native resident of Nuuanu Valley, who was seen going home on the evening of the prorogation in an old working suit of clothes. On being asked where his tall hat, longblack coat, and black pants were, he replied, “In the basket,” pointing to one which he was carrying on his arm. Proceeding, the native said that he, with others, had been ordered to go and ask for a new constitution, and went prepared to ask, never dreaming of having the request granted, but before the delegation could present the petition the Queen intimated that their prayer would be granted, without giving them time even to read the petition. The old man said he knew that was treason, and he thought he had better get home. So he got his wife to bring him his old clothes again, which he immediately donned, shuffling his finery into the basket. He further stated that he and the rest had no desire for a new constitution.
lifting the hammer for the coup.
In the meantime a large crowd of Hawaiians had gathered around the palace gates and in the grounds near the great flight of steps, and natives were also, gathered in large groups in the Government-building yard and elsewhere in the neighborhood. The Queen retired to the blue room and summoned the ministers, who repaired at once to the palace. The Queen was at a table, still dressed in the magnificent costume of the morning, and sparkling in a coronet of diamonds. She at once presented them with the draft of the new constitution, demanded their signatures, and declared her intention to promulgate the same at once. Attorney-general Peterson and Minister of Interior Colburn decidedly refused to do so, and Ministers Cornwell and Parker, though more hesitatingly, joined their colleagues in this refusal. All the cabinet now perceived the expediency of advising Her Majesty not to violate the law, but she was not to be dissuaded from her mad course. Bringing her clenched hand down upon the table Queen Liliuokalani said: “Gentlemen, I do not wish to hear any more advice. I intend to promulgate this constitution, and to do it now.” Proceeding, she told the cabinet that unless they abandoned their resistance at once she would go out upon the steps of the palace and tell the excited crowd there assembled that she wished to give them a new constitution, but that her ministers were inside the palace, hindering her from doing it. The ministers remembered the riot at the court house, and the fate of the unlucky representatives who fell into the hands of the mob. They knew what the threat might mean, and before it could be put into execution they retired from the palace.
the appeal to the citizens.,
From the Government building, the ministers immediately sent word down town asking the citizens what support the cabinet could expect in its resistance to the [Page 780]revolutionary movement begun by the Queen. Leading citizens of every political complexion hurried together at Hon. W. O. Smith’s office, and, while their numbers were every instant augmented by fresh accessions, held a hurried consultation as to the course to be pursued. There was but one mind among all those gathered together. Tradesmen, lawyers, mechanics, merchants, were of one opinion. A unanimity of sentiment reigned such as has not been witnessed here for years, and it was agreed, without a dissenting voice, that it was the duty of every good citizen, without distinction of party, to support the law and the liberties of the people and to resist the revolutionary encroachments of the Queen. A message to this effect was at once dispatched to the cabinet.
a new struggle with the queen.
The ministers now revisited the palace, not without the apprehension that their persons would be taken into custody even if they suffered no bodily harm. Great pressure had been brought upon Her Majesty to induce her to go no farther and to retrace the revolutionary steps she had already taken. While her troops stood drawn up before the palace, waiting for the final word of command, the Queen hesitated and hesitated. The conference in the blue room was a long one. For two hours the result trembled in the balance. She could not be induced to give up her unlawful project, but Anally consented with bitter reluctance to a temporary postponement of the premeditated coup.
the queen’s speech.
The Queen was a very angry woman, when at 4 p.m. Saturday she returned to the throne room, where were assembled the Hui Kalaiaina with most of the native members of the Legislature, the cabinet, the governor of Oahu, the young princes, Chief-Justice Judd and Mr. Justice Bickerton, the staff, ladies of the court, kahili bearers, etc. She ascended the dais and spoke substantially as follows:
Princes, Nobles, and Representatives: I have listened to the thousands of voices of my people that have come to me, and I am prepared to grant their request. The present constitution is full of defects, as the chief justice here will testify, as questions regarding it have so often come before him for settlement. It is so faulty that I think a new one should be granted. I have prepared one, in which the rights of all have been regarded—a constitution suited to the wishes of the people. I was ready and expected to proclaim the new constitution to-day, as a suitable occasion for it, and thus satisfy the wishes of my dear people. But, with deep regret, I say that I have met with obstacles that prevent it. Return to your homes peaceably and quietly and continue to look towards me, and I will look towards you. Keep me ever in your love. I am obliged to postpone the granting of the constitution for a few days. I must confer with my cabinet, and when, after you return home, you may see it, receive it graciously. You have my love, and with sorrow I now dismiss you.”
Mr. White, replied, thanking the Queen and assuring her of the love of the people, and that they would wait patiently until their desires should be fulfilled, to which the Queen responded with thanks, and left the throne room.
Mr. Kaunamano then began in a loud voice an inflammatory harangue which was suppressed. He demanded the lives of the members of the cabinet who had opposed the wishes of Her Majesty, and declared that he thirsted for bloodshed.
A few moments later the Queen went out upon the upper balcony of the palace and addressed the crowd. She told them that on account of the perfidy of her ministers she was unable to give them the constitution which she had promised them, but that she would take the earliest opportunity of procuring it for them, (The crowd then gave three cheers.)
Representative White then proceeded to the steps of the palace and began an address. He told the crowd that the cabinet had betrayed them, and that instead of going home peaceably they should go into the palace and kill and bury them. Attempts were made to stop him, which he resisted, saying that he would never close his mouth until the new constitution was granted. Finally he yielded to the expostulations of Col. Boyd and others, threw up his hands and declared that he was pau, for the present. After this the audience assembled dispersed.
The constitution which the Queen wished to force upon the people deprived them of all voice in the choice of the house of nobles, the appointment of which was vested in the sovereign. The system of cabinet responsibility was abolished, the choice and removal of ministers being vested solely in the Queen. Native Hawaiians were to be exempt from the payment of personal taxes, and all white men were to be deprived of the franchise except those who were married to native wives.
News was brought to the citizens down town that the attempt to carry the revolution [Page 781]through had for the moment failed. The meeting, however, appreciating the fact that the trouble had but just begun, did not break up, but continued the consideration of the emergency. A committee of public safety was formed, to which the further consideration of the situation was delegated, after which the assembly, which had been animated by one heart and soul from the beginning, dispersed.
The committee of public safety did not delay in their performance of the task intrusted to them by the citizens, but proceeded to hold a conference on the spot. At first everything was in the air, there being no definite plan of operations. The committee adjourned at 6 p.m. to meet again on the following (Sunday) morning. On this occasion the situation was discussed in all its bearings, and it was decided to call a mass meeting, to make a report, and then to ask this general gathering of all the citizens to confirm the appointment of the committee of safety, and to authorize it to take whatever steps might seem necessary to further the public welfare and secure the rights of the people from aggression once and for all. It was the unanimous sentiment of the members of the committee that a proclamation should be issued abrogating the monarchy, and a provisional government established, if the tone of feeling developed at the mass meeting should clearly indicate that such a course would be in accord with public sentiment. In case the expectations of the committee as to the state of public feeling were realized, it would be necessary to be prepared to take immediate steps. The committee, therefore, continued its meetings and began the work of organization and preparation. Monday morning it was decided to request the American minister to land troops for the protection of property, and a request to that effect was forwarded to the American minister.
the queen’s party.
In the meanwhile the Queen’s party were not idle. They were frightened at the tone of feeling manifested in the city, and began to cast about for means of averting the catastrophe which seemed to threaten the throne. The Queen patched up a peace with her cabinet and forgave them, for the time being, for their “perfidy.” In the morning of Sunday she held a meeting at the palace, and charged the native pastors present to pray for her, as evil-minded foreigners were endeavoring to deprive her of her throne. In the evening a secret meeting was held at the office of the attorney-general, in the government building, at which, besides the cabinet, Paul Neumann, Marshal Wilson, Hon. R. W. Wilcox, E. C. Macfarlane and Antone Rosa were present, besides some others. At this meeting Marshal Wilson proposed the arrest of the committee of thirteen, but Paul Neumann and others opposed the proposition on the ground that it would cause friction. Posters for the mass meeting of citizens being already out, it was decided to call a counter mass meeting of Hawaiians at Palace Square, and the tone to be adopted at this meeting was decided upon. A “by authority” notice was drafted, to be signed by the Queen and cabinet, announcing that her intention to abrogate the constitution by force had been abandoned, and that in future any changes she might desire would be affected by constitutional means only. In accordance with the terms of this announcement, the speaking at Palace Square was to be temperate and peaceable.
Monday morning the Advertiser appeared with a long account of the coup d’etat attempted by the Queen on Saturday, and with an editorial counseling the people to stand firmly by their rights. Late in the morning the “by authority “notice above-referred to was distributed. It was as follows:
Her Majesty’s ministers desire to express their appreciation for the quiet and order which has prevailed in this community since the events of Saturday, and are authorized to say that the position taken by Her Majesty in regard to the promulgation of a new constitution was under the stress of her native subjects.
Authority is given for the assurance that any changes desired in the fundamental law of the land will be sought only by methods provided in the constitution itself.
Her Majesty’s ministers request all citizens to accept the assurance of Her Majesty In the same spirit in which it is given.
Minister of Foreign Affairs.
Minister of Finance.
Minister of the Interior.
Iolani Palace, January 16, 1893.[Page 782]
the citizens mass meeting.
At 2 p.m. Monday, January 16, the Honolulu Rifles Armory was the scene of the largest and most enthusiastic mass meeting ever held in Honolulu. It was called by the committee of public safety for the purpose of protesting against the revolutionary aggressions of the Queen. At half-past 1 citizens began to assemble, and before 2 o’clock the large building was crowded to its utmost capacity, 1,260 being present by actual count, while many others came later. Every class in the community was fully represented, mechanics, merchants, professional men, and artisans of every kind being present in full force. The meeting was intensely enthusiastic, being animated by a common purpose and feeling, and most of the speakers were applauded to the echo. Hon. W. C. Wilder, of the committee of safety, was the chairman.
Mr. Wilder said:* Fellow-citizens, I have been requested to act as chairman of this meeting. Were it a common occurrence, I should consider it an honor, but to-day we are not here to do honor to anybody. I accept the chairmanship of this meeting as a duty. [Applause.] We meet here to-day as men—not as any party, faction or creed, but as men who are bound to see good government. It is well known to you all what took place at the Palace last Saturday. I need not tell you the object of this meeting, and no such meeting has been held since 1887. There is the same reason now as then. An impromptu meeting of citizens was called Saturday to take measures for the public safety. The report of the committee will be read to you. We do not meet as revolutionists, but as peaceful citizens who have the right to meet and state their grievances. [Loud applause.] We will maintain our rights and have the courage to maintain them. [Universal cheers.]
Noble Thurston, being introduced by the chairman, read the following
report of the committee of safety.
To the citizens of Honolulu:
On the morning of last Saturday, the 14th instant, the city was startled by the information that Her Majesty Queen Liliuokalani had announced her intention to arbitrarily promulgate a new constitution, and that three of the newly-appointed cabinet ministers had or were about to resign in consequence thereof.
Immediately after the prorogation of the Legislature, at noon, the Queen accompanied, by her orders, by the cabinet retired to the palace; the entire military force of the Government was drawn up in line in front of the building and remained there until dark, and a crowd of several hundred native sympathizers with the new constitution project gathered in the throne room and about the palace. The Queen then retired with the cabinet, informed them that she intended to promulgate it, and proposed to do so then and there and demanded that they countersign her signature.
She turned a deaf ear to their statements and protests that the proposed action would inevitably cause the streets of Honolulu to run red with blood, and threatened that unless they complied with her demand she would herself immediately go out upon the steps of the palace and announce to the assembled crowd that the reason she did not give them the new constitution was because the ministers would not let her. Three of the ministers, fearing mob violence, immediately withdrew and returned to the Government building. They were immediately summoned back to the palace, but refused to go on the ground that there was no guarantee of their personal safety.
The only forces under the control of the Government are the household guards and the police. The former are nominally under the control of the minister of foreign affairs and actually under the control of their immediate commander, Maj. Nowlein, a personal adherent of the Queen.
The police are under the control of Marshal Wilson, the open and avowed royal favorite. Although the marshal is nominally under the control of the attorney-general, Her Majesty recently announced in a public speech that she would not allow him to be removed. Although the marshal now states that he is opposed to the Queen’s proposition, he also states that if the final issue arises between the Queen and the cabinet and people he will support the Queen.
The cabinet was absolutely powerless and appealed to citizens for support.
Later they reluctantly returned to the palace, by request of the Queen, and for nearly two hours she again endeavored to force them to acquiesce in her desire, and upon their final refusal announced in a public speech in the throne room and again from the upper gallery of the palace that she desired to issue the constitution but was prevented from doing so by her ministers and would issue it in a few days.[Page 783]
The citizens responded to the appeal of the cabinet to resist the revolutionary attempt of the Queen by gathering at the office of William O. Smith.
Later in the afternoon it was felt that bloodshed and riot were imminent; that the community could expect no protection from the legal authorities; that on the contrary they would undoubtedly be made the instruments of royal aggression. An impromptu meeting of citizens was held, which was attended by the attorney-general and which was addressed among others by the minister of the interior, J. F. Colburn, who stated to the meeting substantially the foregoing facts.
The meeting unanimously passed a resolution that the public welfare required the appointment of a committee of public safety of thirteen to consider the situation and devise ways and means for the maintenance of the public peace and the protection of life and property.
Such committee was forthwith appointed, and has followed its instructions.
The first step which the committee consider necessary is to secure openly, publicly, and peaceably, through the medium of a mass meeting of citizens, a condemnation of the proceedings of the party of revolution and disorder, and a confirmation from such larger meeting of the authority now vested in the committee.
For such purpose the committee hereby recommends the adoption of the following
- Whereas Her Majesty, Liliuokalani, acting in conjunction with certain other persons, has illegally and unconstitutionally, and against the advice and consent of the lawful executive officers of the Government, attempted to abrogate the existing constitution and proclaim a new one in subversion of the rights of the people;
- And whereas such attempt has been accompanied by threats of violence and bloodshed and a display of armed force; and such attempt and acts and threats are revolutionary and treasonable in character;
- And whereas Her Majesty’s cabinet have informed her that such contemplated action was unlawful, and would lead to bloodshed and riot, and have implored and demanded of her to desist from and renounce such proposed action;
- And whereas such advice has been in vain, and Her Majesty has in a public speech announced that she was desirous and ready to promulgate such constitution, the same being now ready for such purpose, and that the only reason why it was not now promulgated was because she had met with unexpected obstacles, and that a fitting opportunity in the future must be awaited for the consummation of such object, which would be within a few days;
- And whereas at a public meeting of citizens, held in Honolulu on the 14th day of January instant, a committee of thirteen, to be known as the “committee of public safety,” was appointed to consider the situation, and to devise ways and means for the maintenance of the public peace and safety, and the preservation of life and property;
- And whereas such committee has recommended the calling of this mass meeting of citizens to-protest against and condemn such action, and has this day presented a report to such meeting, denouncing the action of the Queen and her supporters as being unlawful, unwarranted, in derogation of the rights of the people, endangering the peace of the community, and tending to excite riot, and cause the loss of life and destruction of property;
Now, therefore, we, the citizens of Honolulu, of all nationalities, and regardless of political party affiliations, do hereby condemn and denounce the action of the Queen and her supporters;
And we do hereby ratify the appointment and indorse the action taken and report made by the said committee of safety; and we do hereby further empower such committee to further consider the situation and further devise such ways and means as may be necessary to secure the permanent maintenance of law and order, and the protection of life, liberty, and property in Hawaii.
Mr. Thurston said: Mr. Chairman, Hawaii is a wonderful country. We are divided into parties and nationalities and factions, but there are moments when we are united and move shoulder to shoulder, moved by one common desire for the public good. Three times during the past twelve years this has happened—in 1880, 1887 and to-day. They say it is ended, it is done, there is nothing to consider. Is it so? [Calls of No! No!] I say, gentlemen, that now and here is the time to act. [Loud cheers.] The Queen says she won’t do it again. [Cries of humbug?] Fellow citizens, have you any memories? Hasn’t she once before promised—sworn solemnly before Almighty God to maintain this constitution? What is her word worth? [Calls of Nothing! Nothing!] It is an old saying that a royal promise is made to be broken. Fellow citizens, remember it. We have not sought this situation. Last Saturday the sun rose on a peaceful and smiling city; to-day it is otherwise. Whose fault is it—Queen Liliuokalani’s? It is not her fault that the streets have not run red with Mood. She has printed a proclamation expressing her repentance for what she has [Page 784]done, and at the same time—perhaps sent out by the same carriers—her organ prints an extra with her speech with bitterer language than that quoted in the Advertiser. She wants us to sleep on a slumbering volcano, which will some morning spew out blood and destroy us all. The constitution gives us the right to assemble peacefully and express our grievances. We are here doing that to-day without arms. The man who has not the spirit to rise after the menace to our liberties has no right to keep them. Has the tropic sun cooled and thinned our blood, or have we flowing in our veins the warm, rich blood which makes men love liberty and die for it? I move the adoption of the resolution. [Tumultuous applause!]
Mr. H. F. Glade: The Queen has done an unlawful thing in ignoring the constitution which she had sworn to uphold. We most decidedly protest against such revolutionary proceedings, and we should do all we possibly can to prevent her from repeating actions which result in disorder and riot. We now have a promise from the Queen that proceedings as we experienced on Saturday shall not occur again. But we should have such assurances and guaranties for this promise as will really satisfy us and convince us of the faith and earnestness of the promise given, of which we now have no assurance. What such guaranties and assurances ought to be I can not at this moment say or recommend. This should be referred to the committee of safety for their careful consideration. I second the motion.
Mr. A. Young, in addressing the meeting, spoke as follows: Mr. Chairman and fellow citizens: In June, 1887, I stood on this same platform and addressed an audience almost as large as the one now before me. At that time we had met to consider a resolution that looked toward a new constitution, which proposed constitution was considered the most effectual method of removing some flagrant abuses in governmental affairs practiced by the King and his cabinets prior to the time that the constitution was promulgated. To-day we have met to consider the action of Her Majesty in attempting to set aside the constitution we all worked so hard to have promulgated, in the best interests of the Sovereign and the people at large, as well as for the redemption of the credit of the kingdom abroad. It has long been reported that at some favorable opportunity the Queen would spring a new constitution upon the people and place matters even more in the hands of the Sovereign than they were before the revolution of 1887. Some did not believe the rumors, but the actions of the Queen in the last few days have convinced the most skeptical that the rumors were well founded, and that she had been pregnant with this unborn constitution for a long time, but it could not be born till under the propitious star. The Queen’s Kahunas, together with her would-be advisers, had no doubt told her that the auspicious time for the advent had arrived. In trying to promulgate this long-promised constitution, the Queen has therefore premeditatedly committed a breach of faith with one portion of her subjects, in order to satisfy the clamors of a faction of natives urged by the influence of a mischievous element of foreigners who mean no good to the Queen or the people, but simply for the purpose of providing avenues for carrying out more perfectly the smuggling of opium and diverting the contents of the treasury into their own pockets. A “by authority” circular has now been handed around, setting forth that the Queen and her cabinet had decided not to press the promulgation of a new constitution, but can we depend on this promise of Her Majesty? Is this promise any more binding upon her than the oath she took before the Almighty God to support and maintain the present constitution? Has not the Queen resorted to very questionable methods in an underhanded way to remove what, to the people, was one of the most acceptable cabinets ever commissioned by any sovereign in this Kingdom, in order that four other ministers might be appointed that would carry out her behest, treasonable or otherwise, as might be most conveniently within their scope. I say, have we any reasonable assurance that the Queen and her ministers have abandoned finally the new constitution promulgation scheme? [Roars of No! from the audience.] My fellow-citizens, while the Queen and her cabinet continue to trifle with and play fast and loose with the affairs of state there can be no feeling of security for foreign families residing within these domains. There can be no business prosperity here at home, and our credit abroad must be of the flimsiest and most uncertain nature. And you business men who are toiling honestly for your bread and butter will have to put up with thin bread and much thinner butter if this farcical work is continued. In order that matters may be set to rights again and that honest, stable, and honorable government may be maintained in Hawaii, I support the resolution, and trust that it will be passed unanimously by this meeting.
Mr. C. Bolte. Since the resolution which was read here has been written things have changed. On Saturday the Queen promised the native people that she would give them a new constitution under all circumstances she did not say exactly when, but as soon as possible. This morning a proclamation was issued, in which she says that her attempt to promulgate a now constitution last Saturday was made under stress of her native subjects, but that she will not do it again. An attempt to change the fundamental law of the land is a very serious matter, a matter that [Page 785]requires a good deal of consideration, and lam well convinced that this matter has been weighed and considered for more than a day by the Queen, and that there was no acting on the spur of the moment under the stress of her native subjects about it. It was her well premeditated conclusion that she would change the constitution, so as to suit herself, on the day of prorogation of the Legislature. Many people knew this several days ago, but there have been so many rumors about all sorts of things that not very much attention was paid to it; it was expected that she might change her mind before that day would come. But she did not change her mind as soon as that; she told the native people that she was ready to give them a new constitution right then and there, but that she could not do it because her ministers would not let her. Now she has changed her mind; she makes a sort of excuse for what she did, and says she will never do it again. It seems to me that the question that your committee has to ask now, and which is for you gentlemen here in the meeting to decide, is this: Are you satisfied with the assurance given in to-day’s proclamation signed by the Queen and the four ministers, and will you consider this matter ended, or do you desire greater and stronger guarantees for the safety and preservation of your life and liberty and property I am one of the citizens’ committee of public safety; my views on the situation are expressed in the resolutions which have just been read, and I trust that you will show that you are of the same mind as the committee by adopting these resolutions.
Hon. H. P. Baldwin. I feel with the rest of you that actions of the Queen have put the country in a very critical situation. Before this revolutionary act of Her Majesty we were getting along. A ministry had been appointed which would probably have been able to pull us through. The McKinley bill had put the whole country into a critical situation. We were working up new industries. Mr. Dillingham is trying to build a railroad around this island. The Queen seems to have blinded herself to all these things. She has followed a whim of her own—a whim of an irresponsible body of Hawaiians—and tried to establish a new constitution. We must stop this; but we must not go beyond constitutional means. I favor the resolution, but think the committee should act within the constitution. There is no question that the Queen has done a revolutionary act—there is no doubt about that. The Queen’s proclamation has not inspired confidence; but shall we not teach her to act within the constitution? [Loud calls of “No.”] Well, gentlemen, I see that you do not agree with me; I am ready to act when the time comes.
J. Emmeluth wished to say a few words on the situation. He had heard the Queen’s speech at the palace, and noted the expression of her face. It was fiendish. When the petitioners filed out he reflected on the fact that thirty men could paralyze the business of the community for twenty-four hours. It was not they that did it, but the schemers behind them, and perhaps a woman, too. It was not the Hawaiians that wanted the new constitution; not those who worked. This was the third time that he had shut his doors, let his men go, and come up to this building. It would be the last time. If we let this time go by we would deserve all we would get. An opportunity came once in every lifetime. It had come to us, and if we finished as we should, a repetition of last Saturday would never occur in this country again. [Applause.] We must stand shoulder to shoulder. There was but one course to pursue, and we would all see it. The manifesto of this morning was bosh. “I won’t do it any more; but give me a chance and I’ll do it again.” That is the real meaning of it. If the Queen had succeeded last Saturday myself and you would have been robbed of the privileges without which no white man can live in this community. “Fear not, be not afraid,” was written in my Bible by my mother twenty-five years ago. Gentlemen, I have done. As far as the Hawaiians are concerned I have an aloha for them, and we wish to have laws enabling us to live peaceably together.
R. J. Greene. Fellow citizens, among the many things I never could do was to make an impromptu speech. I have tried it over and over again and never succeeded but once, and that was after five weeks’ preparation. Our patience has been exhausted. We all agree about the case. The question is the remedy. John Greene, of Rhode Island, entered the war of the Revolution and served throughout. His son, my father, served through the war of 1812, until that little matter was settled. In 1862 John Greene, my father, stood before a meeting like this, and said he had four sons in the war, of whom I was the youngest, and would serve himself if he was not too old. This experience has biased my judgment as to some matters of civil government. It is too late to throw obstacles across the path of its progress here. I have adopted this flag and am loyal to it, but I am not willing to go one step back in the matter of civil liberty, and I will give the last drop of Rhode Island blood in my veins to go forward and not back. [Cheers.]
Chairman Wilder read the latter part of the resolution.
It was passed by a unanimous standing vote, without a dissenting voice and amid tremendous cheers, after which the meeting broke up.[Page 786]
at palace square.
While the mass meeting was in session at the armory a counter demonstration was attempted by the Queen’s party at Palace square. The speakers had been carefully coached and advised to express themselves with the utmost caution. The tone was an unnatural one and the enthusiasm correspondingly small. A resolution was adopted accepting the royal assurance that she would no longer seek a new constitution by revolutionary means. The same meeting, however, expressed by cheers its approbation of the attempt by the Queen to carry out her eoup d’élat, and one of the speakers gave vent to the expression of a wild thirst for bloodshed.
more committee meetings.
Immediately after the mass meeting a session of the committee of public safety was held. All the members felt that their action had been more than indorsed by the citizens, and that the moment a Provisional Government was established the foreign community would rally to its support.
It should have been mentioned that Marshal Wilson had warned all persons from attending the mass meeting. The indications of approaching trouble were serious, and at 5 o’clock in the afternoon, Minister Stevens deemed it proper to comply with the request of the committee of safety, and at the hour named the ship’s battalion, under Lieut. Commander William T. Swinburne, landed, and troops were stationed for the protection of the consulate and legation, while a detachment encamped at Arion Hall. The presence of the troops did much to prevent disorder and to tranquilize the fears of the timid.
In the evening the committee of safety again convened, and elected the executive council and officers. In the morning, the members of the executive council consented to serve, and John H. Soper was induced to accept the responsible position of military chief of the new Government. Judge Sanford B. Dole, the new executive head, sent his resignation to the cabinet, and this act was, so to speak, the first shot of the counter revolution. At 1 p.m., the formation of the advisory council was complete, and shortly after the proclamation was signed by the committee of safety. The first act of the Provisional Government was then to sign the commission of J. H. Soper as commander of the forces. Just as the committee had finished considering the question when the coup should take place, and had decided on immediate action, a shot was fired on Fort street, a crowd ran up to the spot, the story flew through the street, “Good has shot a policeman,” and the committee hastened to the Government building.
the shot on fort street.
The shot fired on Fort street precipitated the revolution. In order to understand this event, it is necessary to return a little and pick up a new thread in the narrative. In the morning J. Good had been appointed ordnance officer, and in the discharge of his duty it became necessary for him to gather up the guns and ammunition available at the different stores, and transfer them to the armory. Half-past 2 in the afternoon was the hour set for the removal of the ammunition from E. O. Hall & Sons. Mr. Good selected Mr. Benner, of Castle &, Cooke’s, to drive the wagon, detailing Edwin Paris and Fritz Rowald as guards. The ammunition had been packed in the morning, the packing having been more or less supervised by some policemen who were hanging around with instructions to watch closely what was going on. At 2:20 Mr. Good proceeded to execute the transfer, and ordered Mr. Benner to drive rapidly out of the rear entrance. As the wagon came out of the gate, a policeman grabbed at the reins and ordered a halt. As the order was disregarded the officer blew his whistle, which was immediately answered by four or five other policemen who came running up and joined in the effort to stop the wagon.
The Fort street car had just crossed King and alongside of it was a dray. This completely barred the progress of the wagon. One of the policemen seized the bit, but was warned off by Mr. Good, revolver in hand. Another endeavored to climb up but received a smart cut with, the whip from Mr. Benner. In the meanwhile two policemen in the rear had been kept off by Paris and Rowald. On the rear platform of the street car were J. A. McCandless and Mr. Martin, the tailor. The latter covered one of the officers with his revolver, but did not fire. In the meantime came from McCandless on the street car, from E. O. White at Hall’s and others, calls of “Pull, pull.” Warned by these, Mr. Good now faced square around. One of the officers was coming up at a run, and when a few feet distant, put his hand behind him as though to draw a revolver. The indications being that some one would be shot, Mr. Good promptly fired and the man fell, with a bullet in the shoulder. This ended the effort to capture the ammunition. The horses started forward and the [Page 787]wagon proceeded up Fort street, followed by two policemen in a back who were kept at a respectful distance by Paris, who leveled his rifle at them. The wagon proceeded up Fort to School street, and then down Punchbowl to the armory, where they were glad to see Zeigler’s men already in line.
the new government declared.
In the meantime the committee of public safety with the members of the provisional Government had proceeded to the Government building, Judge Dole and Mr. Cooper leading the way up Merchant street. All the committee were unarmed. When the building was reached, inquiry was made for the ministers but they were not to be found. Mr. Cooper then made demand upon Mr. Hassinger, the chief clerk of the interior office, for possession of the building, and the demand was immediately complied with, there being no force with which any, resistance could have been made. The committee now proceeded to the public entrance, and Mr. H. E. Cooper read to the gathering crowd the following proclamation:
In its earlier history, Hawaii possessed a constitutional government honestly and economically administered in the public interest.
The Crown called to its assistance as advisers able, honest, and conservative men, whose integrity was unquestioned even by their political opponents.
The stability of the Government was assured: armed resistance and revolution unthought of; popular rights were respected and the privileges of the subject from time to time increased and the prerogatives of the Sovereign diminished by the voluntary acts of the successive kings.
With very few exceptions this state of affairs continued until the expiration of the first few years of the reign of His late Majesty Kalakaua. At this time a change was discernible in the spirit animating the chief executive and in the influences surrounding the throne. A steadily increasing disposition was manifested on the part of the King to extend the royal prerogatives; to favor adventurers and persons of no character or standing in the community; to encroach upon the rights and privileges of the people by steadily increasing corruption of electors, and by means of the power and influence of officeholders and other corrupt means to illegitimately influence the elections, resulting in the final absolute control of not only the executive and legislative, but to a certain extent the judicial departments of the Government in the interest of absolutism.
This finally resulted in the revulsion of feeling and popular uprising of 1887, which wrested from the King a large portion of his ill-gotten powers.
The leaders of this movement were not seeking personal aggrandisement, political power, or the suppression of the native Government. If this had been their object it could easily have been accomplished, for they had the absolute control of the situation.
Their object was to secure responsible government through a representative cabinet, supported by and responsible to the people’s elected representatives. A clause to this effect was inserted in the constitution and subsequently enacted by law by the Legislature, specifically covering the ground that, in all matters concerning the state the sovereign was to act by and with the advice of the cabinet and only by and with such advice.
The King willingly agreed to such proposition, expressed regret for the past, and volunteered promises for the future.
Almost from the date of such agreement and promises, up to the time of his death, the history of the Government has been a continual struggle between the King on the one hand and the cabinet and the Legislature on the other, the former constantly endeavoring by every available form of influence and evasion to ignore his promises and agreements and regain his lost powers.
This conflict upon several occasions came to a crisis, followed each time by submission on the part of His Majesty by renewed expressions of regret and promises to abide by the constitutional and legal restrictions in the future. In each instance such promise was kept until a further opportunity presented itself, when the conflict was renewed in defiance and regardless of all previous pledges.
Upon the accession of Her Majesty Liliuokalani for a brief period the hope prevailed that a new policy would be adopted. This hope was soon blasted by her immediately entering into conflict with the existing cabinet, who held office with the approval of a large majority of the Legislature, resulting in the triumph of the Queen and the removal of the cabinet. The appointment of a new cabinet subservient to her wishes and their continuance in office until a recent date gave no [Page 788]opportunity for further indication of the policy which would be pursued by Her Majesty until the opening of the Legislature in May of 1892.
The recent history of that session has shown a stubborn determination on the part of Her Majesty to follow the tactics of her late brother, and in all possible ways to secure an extension of the royal prerogatives and an abridgment of popular rights.
During the latter part of the session the Legislature was replete with corruption; bribery and other illegitimate influences were openly utilized to secure the desired end, resulting in the final complete overthrow of all opposition and the inauguration of a cabinet arbitrarily selected by Her Majesty in complete defiance of constitutional principles and popular representation.
Notwithstanding such result the defeated party peacefully submitted to the situation.
Not content with her victory, Her Majesty proceeded on the last day of the session to arbitrarily arrogate to herself the right to promulgate a new constitution, which proposed among other things to disfranchise over one-fourth of the voters and the owners of nine-tenths of the private property of the Kingdom, to abolish the elected upper house of the Legislature, and to substitute in place thereof an appointive one to be appointed by the sovereign.
The detailed history of this attempt and the succeeding events in connection therewith is given in the report of the committee of public safety to the citizens of Honolulu, and the resolution adopted at the mass meeting held on the 16th instant, the correctness of which report and the propriety of which resolution are hereby specifically affirmed.
The constitutional evolution indicated has slowly and steadily, though reluctantly, and regretfully, convinced an overwhelming majority of the conservative and responsible members of the community that independent, constitutional, representative, and responsible government, able to protect itself from revolutionary uprisings and royal aggression is no longer possible in Hawaii under the existing system of Government.
Five uprisings or conspiracies against the Government have occurred within five years and seven months. It is firmly believed that the culminating revolutionary attempt of last Saturday will, unless radical measures are taken, wreck our already damaged credit abroad and precipitate to final ruin our already overstrained financial condition; and the guarantees of protection to life, liberty, and property will steadily decrease and the political situation rapidly grow worse.
In this belief, and also in the firm belief that the action hereby taken is, and will be for the best personal, political, and property interests of every citizen of the land,
We, citizens and residents of the Hawaiian Islands, organized and acting for the public safety and the common good, hereby proclaim as follows:
- The Hawaiian monarchial system of Government is hereby abrogated.
- A Provisional Government for the control and management of public affairs and the protection of the public peace is hereby established, to exist until terms of union with the United States of America have been negotiated and agreed upon.
Such Provisional Government shall consist of an executive council of four members, who are hereby declared to be S. B. Dole, J. A. King, P. C. Jones, W. O. Smith, who shall administer the executive departments of the Government, the first named acting as president and chairman of such council and administering the department of foreign affairs, and the others severally administering the department of interior, finance, and attorney-general, respectively, in the order in which they are above enumerated, according to existing Hawaiian law as far as may be consistent with this proclamation; and also of an advisory council which shall consist of fourteen members who are hereby declared to be S. M. Damon, A. Brown, L. A. Thurston, J. F. Morgan, J. Emmeluth, H. Waterhouse, J. A. McCandless, E. D. Tenney, F. W. McChesney, F. Wilhelm, W. R. Castle, W. G. Ashley, W. C. Wilder, C. Bolte. Such advisory council shall also have general legislative authority.
Such executive and advisory councils shall, acting jointly, have power to remove any member of either council and to fill such or any other vacancy.
All officers under the existing Government are hereby requested to continue to exercise their functions and perform the duties of their respective offices, with the exception of the following-named persons:
- Queen Liliuokalani.
- Charles B. Wilson, marshal,
- Samuel Parker, minister of foreign affairs,
- W. H. Cornwell, minister of finance,
- John F. Colburn, minister of the interior,
- Arthur P. Peterson, attorney-general,
who are hereby removed from office.
- All Hawaiian laws and constitutional principles not inconsistent herewith shall continue in force until further order of the executive and advisory councils.
(Signed) Henry E. Cooper, Chairman.
W. C. Wilder,
F. W. McChesney,
Theodore F. Lansing,
Wm. O. Smith,
Lorrin A. Thurston,
Wm. R. Castle,
Committee of Safety.
Honolulu, Hawaiian Islands. January 17, 1893.
During the reading of the proclamation armed adherents of the Government began to gather, and it is stated that Oscar White was the first man in the grounds with a gun. By the time that the reading was finished Capt. Ziegler reached the spot with his men.
the volunteer forces.
The armory on Beretania street was the spot selected for the assembling of the volunteers, and here arms and ammunition were furnished to those who required them. The first body of men who were ready for active work was a company composed of German citizens who were under command of Capt. Charles Ziegler.
They were at the spot about 2:30 o’clock, just one-half hour earlier than the appointed time, but they were soon joined by two companies which were rapidly formed until a good-sized detachment was made up. The last-mentioned companies were under the command of George C. Potter and J. H. Fisher. Each man was armed with a rifle and had a cartridge belt around his waist. When they were mustered together, an order came from Commander J. H. Soper to march at once to the Government building to prevent any possible uprising. The companies at once repaired in squads to Aliiolani Hall. Orders were given to clear the yard and sentries were at the gates to prevent outsiders from entering.
As soon as it was generally known about town that a new Government was established, citizens of all classes rallied to its support, and before nightfall, four companies under arms were organized to uphold the new order and carry it through. During the afternoon a temporary military organization was formed, with J. H. Soper at the head. He named as his aids, George F. McLeod, D. B. Smith, John Good, Fred. Wundenberg, and J. H. Fisher. Captains Hugh Gunn, George C. Potter, Charles Ziegler and J. M. Camara jr., were placed in command of the different companies.
Pickets were at once stationed all over the city to carry out the provisions of martial law which had been proclaimed by the new Government.
After the reading of the proclamation, the new Government at once took possession of the treasury and all the departments. The following orders were issued:
Honolulu, H. I., Jan. 17, 1893.
provisional government of the hawaiian islands.
[Orders No. 1.]
All persons favorable to the Provisional Government of the Hawaiian Islands are hereby requested to forthwith report to the Government at the Government building to furnish the Government such arms and ammunition as they may have in their possession or control, as soon as possible, in order that efficient and complete protection to life and property and the public peace may immediately and efficiently be put into operation.
(Signed) Sanford B. Dole,
J. A. King,
P. C. Jones,
W. O. Smith,
Executive Council of the Provisional Government of the Hawaiian Islands.
James F. Morgan,
S. M. Damon.
W. G. Ashley,
E. D. Tenney,
F. W. McChesney,
W. C. Wilder,
J. A. McCandless,
W. R. Castle,
Lorrin A. Thurston,
F. J. Wilhelm.
Advisory Council of the Provisional Government of the Hawaiian Islands.
Honolulu, H. I., Jan. 17, 1893.
provisional government of the hawaiian islands.
[Order No. 2.]
It is hereby ordered and decreed that until further ordered, the right of the writ of habeas corpus is hereby suspended, and martial law is hereby declared to exist throughout the Island of Oahu.
Minister of Foreign Affairs
J. A. King,
Minister of the Interior.
P. C. Jones,
Minister of Finance.
Executive Council of the Provisional Government of the Hawaiian Islands.
the royalist surrender.
The cabinet were summoned to surrender the palace, police station, and barracks. They endeavored to gain time, but the Provisional Government insisted upon an immediate unconditional surrender. The police station was accordingly given up at once, the Queen retiring from the palace and the barracks being taken into possession the next day. The cabinet noted the following protest:
I, Liliuokalani, by the Grace of God, and under the constitution of the Hawaiian Kingdom, Queen, do hereby solemnly protest against any and all acts done against myself and the constitutional Government of the Hawaiian Kingdom by certain persons claiming to have established a Provisional Government of and for this Kingdom.
That I yield to the superior force of the United States of America, whose minister plenipotentiary, His Excellency John L. Stevens, has caused the United States troops to be landed at Honolulu and declared that he would support the said Provisional Government.
Now, to avoid any collision of armed forces, and perhaps the loss of life, I do under this protest, and impelled by said force yield my authority until such time as the Government of the United States shall, upon the facts being presented to it, undo the action of its representative and reinstate me in the authority which I claim as the constitutional sovereign of the Hawaiian Islands.
Done at Honolulu this 17th day of January, A. D. 1893.
Minister of Foreign Affairs.
|(Signed)||Wm. H. Cornwell,
Minister of Finance.
|(Signed)||Jno. F. Colburn,
Minister of the Interior.
|(Signed)||A. P. Peterson,
To S. B. Dole, Esq., and others composing the Provisional Government of the Hawaiian Islands.
Received by the hands of the late cabinet this 17th day of January, 1893.
|(Signed)||Sanford B. Dole,
Chairman of Executive Council of Provisional Government.
Wednesday, the 18th, was another busy day about the Government building. Recruits kept constantly pouring in from all quarters until about 500 names were enrolled, which spontaneous action on the part of the citizens proved that the new Government had the sympathy and support of the general community.
In the meantime the taking of the barracks and the police station furnished the Government with a large amount of ammunition and arms, which were immediately distributed among the forces of the Government.
The interior of the Government building was transformed into a barracks through the efforts of W. W. Hall, who had been appointed commissary. Beds and bedding [Page 791]were supplied for the men, and arrangements were made with the different hotels to provide food for the volunteers. The legislative hall and other rooms in the building were assigned as quarters for the members of the different companies and everything possible was done for their comfort.
For days everything went along with military precision, and on the 23d the executive and advisory councils of the Government decided to organize a national guard of four companies, one company to be a permanent force under pay and to consist of 100 men, while three companies were to be volunteers. On the same day commissions were issued to J. H. Soper as the commander of the forces with the rank of colonel, John Good as captain, and Arthur Coyne as first lieutenant.
On the 24th, the active work of enlisting men for the permanent force commenced in Arion Hall, where Chief-Justice Judd, Associate Justice Bickerton, and Circuit Judges Whiting and Frear were present to administer the oath of allegiance.
On the same day additional appointments were made as follows: J. H. Fisher as lieutenant-colonel; George F. McLeod as major; W. W. Hall as quartermaster; W. P. Tilden as ordnauce officer; Ira A. Burgess as second lieutenant of the regular forces.
On the same evening, at the Government building, an important event took place when the three volunteer military companies were organized. Each company will probably consist of 100 men. They will be uniformed and armed with rifles, and as soon as possible meeting places will be provided for the companies.
Following is the list of officers:
- Company A.—Captain, C. W. Ziegler; first lieutenant, A. Gartenberg; second lieutenant, Karl Klemme.
- Company B.—Captain, Hugh Gunn; first lieutenant, Arthur Brown; second lieutenant, L. T. Kenake.
- Company C.—Captain, J. M. Camara, jr.; first lieutenant, J. M. Vivas; second lieutenant, A. G. Suva, jr.
the boston men.
The battalion from the Boston was composed as follows:
Marine Guard.—First Lieut. H. L. Draper, commanding, 30 men armed with Springfield rifles.
Artillery Company.—Lieut. Lucien Young, commanding, 34 men, with two gatlings.
First Company Infantry.—Lieut. Charles Laird, commanding, 34 men armed with Lee rifles.
Second Company Infantry.—Lieut. D. W. Coffman, commanding, 34 men armed with Lee rifles.
Adjutant of the battalion, Lieut. W. R. Rush.
When the battalion fell in line it marched up Fort street to the office of Mr. H. W. Severance, consul-general for the United States, when a halt was made. One company was detached and sent to guard the American legation on Nuuanu street. A guard was also left at the consul’s office, after which the battalion moved out Merchant street to King, and came to a halt in front of Mr. J. A. Hopper’s residence. About sundown another move was made to Mr. J. B. Atherton’s residence in the same street, and after a stay of several hours a return march to Arion Hall was made, where the battalion made its headquarters for several days. In the meantime the old Bishop premises on King street had been prepared for the officers and men, and on Thursday, January 19, they were installed, and they have been there ever since.
the new government recognized.
As soon as the Provisional Government was in possession, it sent notifications of the situation to all the representatives of the foreign powers. Recognitions began to pour in as soon as it became clear that the Government was a genuine de facto one, until all the powers had accepted the situation. The list includes Sweden, Germany, the United States, Austro-Hungary, Belgium, Russia, Peru, Italy, the Nether-land’s, France, England, Japan, China, Portugal, Chile, Denmark, Spain, and Mexico.
It was also decided to dispatch the Claudine to San Francisco with a commission empowered to negotiate a treaty of union with the United States. She left this port Thursday morning at about half past 9 o’clock for San Francisco with the special commission to Washington on board. The Wilder dock was crowded with people to witness the departure of the vessel, and when she left the dock three hearty cheers were given for Messrs. Thurston, Wilder, W. R. Castle, Marsden, and Carter, the gentlemen who compose the special commission. Many prominent citizens were present on the dock to bid the gentlemen good luck and a successful mission. The vessel had been carefully guarded for a couple of days previously to prevent any stowaways from getting on board, and on her departure a thorough search was made. [Page 792]The voyage was prosperous. Saturday morning, January 28, the commissioners landed in San Francisco, proceeding on the following day to Washington.
The eleven days immediately following the departure of the Claudine were not distinguished by any event of special importance. The Provisional Government was busily occupied in adjusting the administration to the new conditions. A few bills were passed, but no legislation has been attempted except such as was called for by the exigencies of the situation. A strong guard was kept upon the Government building, as well as at the palace, barracks, and police station. The neighborhood of the Government building was also picketed, and a regular street-patrol, horse and foot, was maintained during the night. One or two fires, suspected to be of incendiary origin, were started, but they were promptly extinguished, and no damage resulted. Under martial law the streets of the city were quiet as they seldom have been before. The saloons were at first closed, but everything remained so quiet that even this simple measure was found unnecessary. The excitement of the first two or three days passed away, and business resumed its customary course. Recruits flowed in steadily, though no special effort was made to obtain them.
This state of things lasted eleven days, when the Government resolved upon a new move, which had been the subject of deliberation for several days. The incessant agitation on the part of certain whites of the class who have always been the curse of this country, coupled with the efforts of one English and one or two native newspapers to discredit the Government, to block its efforts toward the establishment of order, and in general to bring it into disrepute and contempt, had been the chief agency in spreading through the town a feeling of uneasiness and disquietude. It was thought wise, therefore, to secure the direct assistance of the United States Government in the preservation of property and the maintenance of order, and a request was forwarded by the Government to the American minister to establish a protectorate pending the settlement of the negotiations at Washington.
In accordance with the terms of this request, at 8:30 a.m. February 1, Capt. Wiltse proceeded to the Government building, and a few moments later the battalion of the U. S. S. Boston, under Lieut. Commander Swinburne, marched up the street, entered the grounds, and drew up in front of the building.
Detachments from the three volunteer Companies A, B, and C were drawn up in line, under the command of their respective captains, Ziegler, Gunn, and Camara. Just before 9 o’clock Lieut. Rush read in a loud voice the following proclamation, and punctually at 9 o’clock, amid the breathless silence of all present, the flag, saluted by the troops and by the cannon of the Boston, was raised above the tower of Aliiolani Hall.
The following is the text of the proclamation:
To the Hawaiian people:
At the request of the Provisional Government of the Hawaiian Islands, I hereby, in the name of the United States of America, assume protection of the Hawaiian Islands for the protection of life and property and occupation of public buildings and Hawaiian soil, so far as may be necessary for the purpose specified, but not interfering with the administration of public affairs by the Provisional Government.
This action is taken pending, and subject to, negotiations at Washington.
Envoy Extraordinary and Minister Plenipotentiary of the United States.
United States Legation, February 1, 1893.
Approved and executed by
G. C. Wiltse, Captain, U. S. N.,
Commanding the United States Ship Boston.
The wisdom of the Government’s course in requesting the protectorate was justified by the result. A feeling of general relief spread itself throughout the community. The maintenance of the citizen soldiers, many of whom could ill spare the time and strength which they required for their daily bread, had been somewhat burdensome. While these soldiers were willing to support the Government as long as necessary, most of them were glad to be able to return to the ordinary occupation. The power of the Provisional Government to maintain itself against all comers was never doubted for a moment, but it was naturally felt that the safest course was to be in constant readiness for an attack, even though the probability of any being made might be very small. As a matter of fact, it is not likely that an armed attempt to overthrow the Government would have been made.
On Sunday, the 5th of February, martial law was abrogated and the right of the [Page 793]writ of habeas corpus restored. No use had been made of its suspension, and no political arrests of any kind were found necessary.
The steamer arrived from San Francisco February 10, bringing the news that the propositions of this Government were very favorably received by the press and people of the United States. The arrival of this intelligence produced a feeling of general satisfaction throughout the community, which was raised to the highest pitch when the China came in Monday, February 20, six days from San Francisco, and brought the further news of the arrival of the commissioners in Washington, their favorable reception, and formal recognition by the administration, and the rapid progress of negotiations for an annexation treaty at Washington.
On Washington’s birthday the Australia arrived, confirming previous dispatches, and adding to them the fact that the treaty had been signed by the President, and that it would be submitted to the Senate for ratification immediately. The resultant state of feeling is one not merely of the keenest personal satisfaction, but of general security. Business confidence is being restored, sugar stocks are recovering, the money market is easier, and there is a well-founded anticipation among all classes that Hawaii, as a part of the American Union, is about to enter upon a career of prosperity without a parallel in her history.
the men who did it.
The foregoing sketch, brief as it is, would not be complete without a word or two as to the character of the men who have brought the cause to a successful issue. Of Lorrin A. Thurston it is not necessary to speak. His indomitable resolution and energy are recognized by all as prime factors in the movement. The proclamation, which may well be called the new charter of Hawaiian liberty, he dictated from a sick bed, but its ringing words have nothing in them but the health and strength of full manhood. The fact that Sanford B. Dole is the executive head of the Government has furnished from the beginning one of the strongest guarantees of its success. No man in all the Hawaiian commonwealth is the object of more universal respect. He stands for equity, for moderation, for prudence, and for firmness as well, in all the actions of the executive.
The military department possesses a thoroughly reliable head in John H. Soper. Te pluck and determination of J. Good, captain of the regulars, who fired the first and last shot of the revolution, have been invaluable to the cause. Capt. Ziegler, with his Germans, has been a host, and the zeal of Captains Gunn and Camara, of the volunteers, who have devoted day and night to the service, as well as the officer’s of the commander’s staff, is above praise. With the police station in the charge of Fred Wundenberg, during the first doubtful and trying days, everyone felt that stronghold to be safe.
No attempt is made here even to enumerate more than a fraction of those who have served the cause with devotion. Many of those chiefly worthy of mention must pass unnamed. The host of volunteers, though their roll is not called here, should not be forgotten, for their service, though humbler, was not less necessary than the service of the leaders.
A SKETCH OF RECENT EVENTS.
[Being a short, account of the events which culminated on June 30, 1887, together with a full report of the great reform meeting, and the two constitutions in parallel columns. Honolulu: Published by A. M. Hewett., Hawaiian Gazette Print, 1887.]
The origin of the events which had their culmination in the revolution of July 1, 1887, must be sought for in the Moreno episode of 1880. The teterrima causa, of course, was the vicious and worthless constitution of 1864; but, as the Hon. C. R. Bishop said in the now historical meeting of June 30, 1887, he had lived under it during the reign of five Kings and had not found out that it was a bad one until the last few years when it had been so thoroughly misused. We may, for the moment, dismiss that, and concentrate our attention on the last eight years, when it became patent to one designing mind how the “worthless rag” of a constitution might be used by an unscrupulous man for private aggrandizement.
C. C. Moreno came here in 1880 with a scheme for a transpacific cable and a plan for a set of Chinese steamers, which were to touch here on their way between San Francisco and the Flowery Kingdom. He soon found his way to the ear of the King, and put before him some dazzling schemes. Moreno was a keen politician, and made use of Mr. W. M. Gibson, who was then leading the opposition in the Legislature, to [Page 794]further Ms. views in the house, and also learned Gibson’s plans, some of them, according to his story, very desperate ones, for acquiring power. The cabinet at that time consisted of Messrs. S. G. Wilder, interior; J. M. Kapena, foreign affairs, Simon Kaai, finance, and Edward Preston, attorney-general. An attempt was made to overthrow this cabinet in the Legislature by a vote of want of confidence, but it was defeated and the session came to a close. Within a few hours after the prorogation the cabinet was summarily dismissed by the King, and commissions were signed (August 14) for John E. Bush, interior, C. C. Moreno, foreign affairs, Kaai, finance, and Claude Jones, attorney-general. The change called forth a perfect storm. A mass meeting was held, the diplomatic corps intervened, and the most objectionable feature in the ministry, C. C. Moreno, was forced to resign August 19, and left for San Francisco in the Ho Chung, a steamer belonging to the Chinese Navigation Company. By September 27, 1880, an entirely new ministry was formed with Messrs. W. L. Green, H. A. P. Carter, J. S. Walker, and Mr. W. N. Armstrong joined them later as attorney-general.
This was but an episode, but it showed what could be done. If a stranger could drop, as it were, from the clouds and do what Moreno had done, why should not another, who was a resident here, do likewise? The seed sown by Moreno took rapid hold in the mind of Gibson, and from the moment of Moreno’s fall he resolved to work on the lines of the wily Don.
It took some time to organize his scheme, but Gibson kept his aim steadily in view. On May 19, 1882, during the first weeks of the legislative session, the Green-Carter ministry resigned, and Gibson was called to the head of affairs. His colleagues were Messrs. Simon Kaai, interior; J. E. Bush, finance, and Edward Preston, attorney-general. From 1882 to June 30, 1887, a system of gradual extension of royal prerogatives, a using of the public funds for private ends, has steadily gone on. The changes in the cabinet have been so frequent that it acquired the name of kaleidoscopic; but whatever change took place, one central figure always remained, and that was W. M. Gibson. During his career he occupied every place in the cabinet, and on one occasion he filled three positions at the same time, viz, foreign affairs, interior, and the attorney-generalship.
The policy at first adopted was to play upon the King’s vanity, and for that purpose a gorgeous coronation pageant was arranged, which took place February 14, 1883. The bills incurred on that occasion were enormous, how large has never yet been learned, but at the sesion of 1886 the outstanding accounts under this head still amounted to some $20,000. The coronation, however, was but the thin end of the wedge. In every way that could add to the tinsel and glitter of the Kingdom, money was spent.
It became very clear that to do this it was necessary to “hold” the Legislature. To this end political heads were chopped off in all directions and the places of the former incumbents filled by men devoted to the new régime without reference to their fitness for the positions. Thus Mr. Godfrey Brown was summarily dismissed from the finance office and Col. Allen from the collector-generalship of customs, while the board of education, consisting of Messrs. C. R. Bishop, E. O. Hall, Godfrey Rhodes, and J. Kawainui were turned out in an insulting manner. The name and influence of the King were freely used in the elections, and the Government candidates for election were chosen from among the office-holders. In the Legislature of 1884 an effort was made to meet the evil but the opposition was not united enough; it needed that the governing powers should more plainly show their evil qualities before all men would unite in a solid phalanx against them.
The appropriation bill of 1884 far exceeded any previous one. Money was voted for many useless things; the expenses of the privy purse were swelled; so was the military vote, the vote for foreign missions, and, throughout the whole session and long alter it, the Spreckels’ influence was supreme. The following two years told the same tale of extravagance only the Government were becoming more bold. Jobs of the most flagrant description were constantly being brought before the public through the press, and the cabinet calmly smiled and asked, the complainants what they were going to do about it?
The leprosy question, also, had been growing into a crying evil. Lepers were let free, either on the authority of Mr. Gibson or the King, and these permits were used for political purposes. To quell the feeling in this direction, for it was growing serious, Dr. Arning, a specialist, was sent for from Germany. He came, instituted a set of valuable experiments, and then-, proving only a scientific man and not a political tool, was dismissed, under circumstances which are fresh in the minds of all our readers. Debt, too, began to accumulate rapidly, and to bolster their failing finances, loans were obtained from Mr. Spreckels.
For the Legislature of 1886 a gallant fight was made to have a body of men elected who would vote money with some sense of its value, and who should, in some degree, represent the capital and brains of the country. The effort was abortive. Every scandalous means was used to secure a victory for the men in power. Bribery was [Page 795]employed, liquor was allowed to run in a tide, promises of office were given, intimidation was resorted to, and in one district a number of soldiers were taken up to outvote the opposition candidate, while in another the voting lists were openly tampered with.
With a Legislature composed of such materials, and obtained by such means, it is not surprising that the right of free speech was cut off, and that a reckless disregard for the rights of capital and brains reigned supreme.
The session lasted from April 30 to October 16—a period of 170 days. The results were an appropriation bill of somewhat over four and a half millions of dollars, the income of the country being about two millions. A loan bill was passed authorizing the Government to borrow $2,000,000, the affair to be managed by a syndicate in London. A free-liquor bill had been passed in the Legislature of 1884, and that of 1886 gave an opium bill, which was so framed that bribery could be freely used to obtain the license. The results of this bill will be seen later on. Then there was an army bill, authorizing the expenditure of a very large sum of money, and creating generals, colonels, intelligence officers, and no end of frippery. The buying and fitting out of a man-of-war was authorized, and the vote for foreign missions was still further increased. One thing was made clear, during the session, and that was the ministerial view of the constitution. In open debate the question was argued: “Where lies, or should lie, the preponderating, the actual ruling power?” One of the independent members maintained “In the legislature;” the ministry held “In the crown;” and the latter theory was acted upon.
Great dissatisfaion was felt at the close of the Legislature; but matters were not so bad yet as to cause all men to unite. What the Government intended to do soon began to be developed. An embassy, under charge of John E. Bush, was sent at great expense to Samoa. A large sum of money was expended over festivities in honor of the King’s birthday. The Explorer (re-named the Kaimiloa)—a vessel totally unsuited for the purpose—was purchased by the Government for $20,000, and some $50,000 or $60,000 were expended in turning her into a man-of-war. The crew was largely made up of boys from the Reformatory School, and their conduct, together with that of some of the officers, created a perfect scandal. On the evening before the day appointed for the sailing of the vessel a mutiny broke out, and several of the officers were summarily dismissed. Meantime, money was very scarce, the loan was bungled, and though the money had been subscribed in England, it was not forthcoming in Hawaii. The roads all over the group were in a terrible condition; the harbor had not been dredged for months, no funds being forthcoming for the purpose; the landings were neglected and Government indebtedness was not liquidated.
So bad had things become that men set seriously to work to right them, and early in the present year a number of gentlemen in Honolulu and on the other islands began to consider the best means for putting an end to the then state of affairs, and placing the Government of the country on a basis which should for the future do away with the system of corruption and fraud which had ruled so long. For this purpose arms were imported, and every preparation made beforehand. The organization took the name of the Hawaiian League, and had enrolled among its members some of the weightiest men in the city.
The agitation was progressing favorably, when a weapon was put into the hands of the patriotic party which served to unite the whole population as one man against the regime under which such iniquities could be perpetrated.
We have spoken above of the opium law which was passed in the Legislature of 1886, and which had received the King’s signature in spite of the most vigorous protests from all classes of the community. The bill provided that a license for the sale of opium, at the rate of $30,000 per annum, should be given to whomsoever the minister of the interior might choose.
The facts in the matter, furnished on undeniable authority, were published in the Hawaiian Gazette of May 17, and from that paper we quote. The paper said:
“Early in November, 1886, one Junius Kaae, heretofore conspicuous for nothing except being a ‘palace hanger-on’ (since promoted to the office of register of deeds), went to a Chinese rice-planter named Aki and asked him if he did not want the opium license. Aki said he did. Kaae then informed him that he could help him to get it, and that the first step necessary was to pay the King the sum of $60,000, but that he must hurry up about it, because there were others trying to get the King to give it to them. After some discussion, Aki agreed to act upon Kaae’s suggestion. About the 6th of December, in the afternoon, $20,000 were taken to the palace in a basket. The King, seeing others around, told the bearers to come in the evening. They came in the evening and met the King, who directed them to see Kaae. Kaae, being present, conferred with the King, and then went to the King’s private office, and he there received the $20,000, and put it in the King’s private drawer. A few days after, the King stated to the owner that he had received the $20,000. Shortly after a check on the bank for $10,000 was handed to the King personally. The same day Kaae returned it, saying that they preferred coin to [Page 796]checks. The same evening the coin to that amount was delivered to Kaae. A day or two later $30,000 in gold coin and certificates of deposit, in two baskets, were taken to the palace and delivered, together with a present of a little baked pig, to the King personally. This completed the $60,000. Finding how easily $60,000 was made, probably there were some qualms of conscience about letting the license go so cheap. Aki was therefore informed by Kaae that John S. Walker was backing another Chinaman, and that unless $15,000 more was forthcoming, Walker’s Chinaman would get the license. Aki reluctantly raised the amount, and it was paid to the King personally.”
Shortly after this, Aki heard that the license had been given to another Chinese syndicate, at the head of which was Chun Lung.
The fact that he had lost his money and his license, made Aki tell, and the whole circumstances, were drawn up in a series of affidavits. On May 31 the Gazette published Aki’s affidavit, giving the matter more fully in detail, and likewise exposed an illegal land transaction in which the minister of foreign affairs, W. M. Gibson, while acting minister of interior, had been engaged.
It had also transpired that the minister of interior, J. Aholo, had drawn a sum of money out of the treasury, certifying that it was for the work done on the continuation of Queen’s street, when it was known, for a fact, that no such work had been done.
These publications created an immense sensation, and the entire press united, in denouncing the venality and corruption of the Hawaiian Government. Preparations were made for holding a public meeting on Monday, June 27, but it was deemed advisable to postpone the meeting till Thursday, June 30. Early on Tuesday, June 28, it was rumored that the ministry had resigned. This was found to be a fact. During that day and the next the ex-attorney-general made efforts to get together a coalition ministry, but without success, and on Thursday, June 30, the mass meeting was held. The account of it, which appeared in the Gazette, is reproduced here, corrected by the accounts published in the Commercial Advertiser and Herald. It reads as follows:
the great mass meeting.
The most enthusiastic, largest, and yet most orderly meeting ever held in Honolulu took place on Thursday afternoon June 30. The meeting had been advertised June 29 by posters in English, Hawaiian, and Portuguese, and long before the appointed hour, 2 p.m., the approaches to the armory of the Honolulu Rifles, corner of Punchbowl and Beretania streets, were thronged with crowds of people of all classes, hurrying to the rendezvous. All the stores in town were closed by 1 p.m., and all work on buildings or in machine shops was brought to a close. Passing the palace a considerable stir was noticed, and as the Gazette reporter passed, a native with half a dozen rifles on his shoulder was proceeding thither from the barracks.
Outside the armory the Honolulu Rifles were drawn up under arms with fixed bayonets, and each man carrying fifty rounds of ammunition. Our citizen soldiers looked a fine body of men, “ready,” as one of the speakers afterwards said in the meeting, “to defend their rights or enforce them.”
In the armory seats had been arranged, and by 2 o’clock the building was filled in every part, while a large crowd blocked up every opening. The platform was placed on the mauka or land side of the building. On the table was the Hawaiian flag, while at the back the flags of the United States and Great Britain were intertwined, fit emblems of the mother and daughter country standing shoulder to shoulder.
Those who were present.—The assemblage was thoroughly representative—mechanics, merchants, day-laborers, planters, professional men, all were there. Of nationalities there were Americans, Britons, Colonials, Germans, Hawaiians, Portuguese, Chinese, and Japanese. In numbers, a good many estimated the crowd as being about 2,500. With but a few exceptions, all were animated by the same feelings, the same determination, to put an end, once and for all, upon the present iniquitous system of misrule and extravagance.
The following list of names was compiled by Mr. Dan Logan, of the Herald, Dr. Emerson, and Mr. Alatau T. Atkinson, of the Gazette, and though necessarily imperfect, will serve to show the material of which the meeting was composed:
Representative names.—Jonathan Austin, Hon. W. F. Allen, Alatau T. Atkinson, J. B. Atherton, L. C. Ables, H. J. Agnew, L. Aseu, F. E. Atwater, W. Alexander, Hon. C. R. Bishop, Maj. Benson, U. S. Army; Hon. Cecil Brown, Godfrey Brown, Frank Brown, W. P. A. Brewer, Rev. Dr. Beckwith, W. R. Buchanan, P. Butler, J. E. Brown, J. Bushee, Rev. S. E. Bishop, Geo. C. Beckley, A. J, Cartwright, sr., H. W. Schmidt, R. J. Creighton, Hon. John A. Cummins, James Campbell, Hon. W. R. Castle, G. P. Castle, Kwong Hang Cheng, Yuen Chong, J. O. Carter, E. S. Cunha, [Page 797]Lan Chong, Robert Catton, C. k. Cooke, E. C. Damon, M. Dickson, W. E. H. Deverill, J. A. Dower, J. Dowsett, Dr. N. B. Emerson, G. D. Freeth, W. S. Forsyth, Chas. Foster (Maui), W. E. Foster, C. J. Fishel, Hon. W. L. Green, H. F. Glade, Sir A. Gooch (England), Robt. Gay, R. Jay Greene, W. Robinson, R. Grieve, Capt. W. B. Godfrey, Chr. Gertz, Frank Gertz, Walter Hill, A. Hoffnung (England), Julius Hoting, Major Hills, C. Hammer, F. M. Hatch, W. W. Hall, W. L. Holokahiki, C. W. Hart, Thos. Hughes, W. E. Herrick, Maj. A. B. Hayley, Hon. P. Isenberg, A Jaeger, P. C. Jones, E. W. Jordan, W. A. Kinney, Geo. Kim, A. Kraft, Capt. J. King, Prince Albert Kunuiakea, M. Louisson, R. W. Laine, D. Logan, H. R. Macfarlane, E. C. Marfarlane, Fred W. Macfarlane, M. Mclnerny, Rev. W. C. Merritt, Alex McKibbin, Capt. Mist, R. IST., E. Muller, Rev. Alex Mackintosh, Dr. J. S. McGrew, A. Marques, J. A. McCandless, M. D. Monsarrat, Dr. Robt. McKibbin, Captain Macau-lay, John Nott. P. Neumann, Rev. W. B. Oleson, Hon. Sam Parker, R. W. Purvis, John H. Paty, W. C. Peacock, W. H. Rice, Mark P. Robinson, Dr. C. T. Rodgers, H. Riemen Schneider, H. Renjes, Capt. Ross, L. F. Stolz, Capt. Harry S. Swinton, J. H. Soper, S. Savidge, F. M. Swanzy, G. M. Still man, Dr. Tucker, H. S. Tregloan, J. G. Tucker, T. G. Thrum, Fred Turril, H. S. Townsend, R. von Tempsky, J. M. Vivas, J. T, Waterhouse, E. M. Walsh, William C. Wilder, J. Hay Wodehouse, H. M. Whitney, Henry Waterhouse, C. L. White, J. A. Wilder, T. Rain Walker, G. L. Wilcox, Rev. George Wallace. C. B. Wilson, R. N. Webster, Chief Engineer Whittaker, U. S. Army; A. S. Wilcox, A. Young.
At the reporters’ table were Messrs. Daniel Logan, editor of the Daily Herald; Walter Hill, editor of the Bulletin; Alatau T. Atkinson, editor of the Gazette; Messrs. Taylor and Gilbert, of the P. C. Advertiser; Mr. S. Kaaikaula, of the Pae Aina; Mr. Ho Fon, of the Chinese News, and Mr. F. J. Testa, of the Elele.
The meeting.—Shortly after the stroke of 2 Hon. S. B. Dole came on to the platform and calling the meeting to order, dominated Mr. P. C. Jones as chairman. The nomination was accepted unanimously, and amid loud applause the genial gentleman, who has presided over so many a social gathering, took charge of the most important meeting that has ever been known in Hawaiian history.
Mr. Jones, on ascending the platform, said: I feel honored at being nominated chairman of this, the largest and most important meeting that has ever assembled in this city. We have assembled in a constitutional manner, and propose to conduct it in a constitutional manner. We are here for the purpose of asking for good government, a thing we have not had, but which we earnestly desire. We, representatives of all nations, are assembled here and we can afford to conduct ourselves in a firm and dignified manner, because we are firm and determined in what we ask. [Applause.]
A set of resolutions have been prepared which will be read to you by Mr. L. A. Thurston, and also a communication from the King which has just been received by the Hon. C. R. Bishop. Then there will be short speeches. As there are many speakers and the place is warm and we are warmed up, they will be limited to five minutes. We must make the work short, sharp, and decisive. [Loud cheers.]
Hon. Lorrin Thurston apologized for appearing in uniform, but he had been so ordered by his commanding officer, and he obeyed his orders. He then read the following:
We, the citizens, residents, and taxpayers of Honolulu, acting, as we firmly believe, in sympathy with and in behalf of all right-minded citizens, residents, and taxpayers of this Kingdom, and being assembled in mass meeting in the city of Honolulu, on the 30th day of June, 1887, do resolve as follows:
- That the administration of the Hawaiian Government has ceased, through corruption and incompetence, to perform the functions and afford the protection to personal and property rights for which all governments exist.
- That while some of the evils of which we complain can not be at once adequately redressed and their recurrence prevented, and many others are incurable except by radical changes in the present constitution, yet there are some evils which we feel must be remedied at once, before a permanent reform movement can be inaugurated with any reasonable prospect of success.
- Holding these views, we request of the King:
- First. That he shall at once and unconditionally dismiss his present cabinet from office, and we ask that he shall call one of these persons, viz, William L. Green, Henry Waterhouse, Godfrey Brown, or Mark P. Robinson to assist him in selecting a new cabinet, which shall be committed to the policy of securing a new constitution.
- Second. That Walter M. Gibson shall be at once dismissed from each and every office held by him under the Government.
- Third. In order, so far as possible, to remove the stain now resting on the Throne, we request of the King that he shall cause immediate restitution to be made of the sum, to wit, seventy-one thousand dollars ($71,000), recently obtained by him in violation of law and of his oath of office, under promise that the persons from whom [Page 798]the same was obtained shall receive the license to sell opium, as provided by statute of the year 1886.
- Fourth. Whereas one Junius Kaae was implicated in the obtaining of said seventy-one thousand dollars ($71,000), and has since been, and still is, retained in office as registrar of conveyances, we request, as a safeguard to the property interests of the country, that said Kaae be at once dismissed from said office, and that the records of our land titles be placed in hands of one in whose integrity the people can safely confide.
- Fifth. That we request a specific pledge
from the King—
- That he will not in the future interfere either directly or indirectly with the election of representatives.
- That he will not interfere with or attempt to unduly influence legislation or legislators.
- That he will not interfere with the constitutional administration of his cabinet.
- That he will not use his official position or patronages for private ends.
Resolved, That Paul Isenberg, W. W. Hall, J. A. Kennedy, W. H. Rice, Capt. Jas. A. King, E. B. Thomas, H. C. Reed, John Vivas, W. F. A. Brewer, W. B. Oleson, Cecil Brown, Capt. John Ross, J. B. Atherton, are hereby appointed to present the foregoing resolutions and requests to the King; and said committee is hereby instructed to request of the King that a personal answer to the same be returned within twenty-four hours of the time when the same are presented; and to further inform the King that his neglect so to answer the same within said time will be construed as a refusal of the said requests.
Resolved, That said committee, in case of the King’s refusal to grant said requests, or in case of his neglect to reply to the same, is authorized to call another mass meeting at this place on Saturday, July 2, at 2 p.m., to further consider the situation.
When the second request, relative to the summary dismissal of Walter M. Gibson, was read, a perfect storm of cheers swept through the building.
Hon. C. R. Bishop then read the communication he had received from the King, premising that it had reached him at 1 p.m.
the king’s letter.
Hon. C. R. Bishop,
Member of the Souse of Nobles, Privy Councillor of State, etc.:
My Dear Sir: Reposing especially confidence in your loyalty and sound judgment as a councillor, and knowing your regard for our people, we are moved to call upon the Hon. W. L. Green to form a cabinet and a ministry which he may select and will be acceptable to the respectable and responsible majority of our people, will be welcome to us; and any guaranties which may be reasonably required of us under the constitution and laws of our Kingdom will be at once conceded to such administration.
The chairman reread the letter for the benefit of those who were far off, Mr. Bishop’s voice not being strong enough to reach the whole assemblage.
Mr. W. A. Kinney read a translation of the resolutions in Hawaiian, the reader being frequently interrupted by applause.
Hon. W. L. Green, on being called, was received with great applause. He said a speech from him was impossible. He could not tell, no one could tell, what the course of events would be. He knew no more than any one present about the letter from the King. The meeting had assembled to express themselves as to the past and in regard to the future, and he urged upon the speakers to keep their language firm and decisive. He remembered a meeting held some three years ago, bethought, at the Lyceum. It was a large meeting, though not so large as this, and its object was to protest against the maladministration of the Gibson cabinet. He was not there, not being well, but sent a letter, in which he expressed himself in strong language. He need not go into the details—that could be done better by others; but they were met again to-day, because from that day to this that same administration had been getting worse and worse until at last it had become intolerable. He considered that their united attitude to-day was one which would teach His Majesty that he must turn over a new leaf, and see that this country is governed as a constitutional monarchy. He thought the King’s letter precluded his saying anything further on this point. If he should be called upon to head a ministry, it should be one pledged to the common good, and which would carry out the resolutions passed there that day.
Mr. W. A. Kinney, before addressing the meeting in Hawaiian, spoke in English. He said that he had been born here and please God he was going to die here, and [Page 799]would try to live here under this flag, hut he wanted that flag to be clean. It would not be clean unless they went much further than the removal of the Gibson admin istration. He had been reminded of the words of Lord Chatham, “It is time that the Crown were addressed in the language of truth.” It is the height of folly to put four men into a hostile camp, and support the tension to try and keep them there. (Mr. E. M. Walsh—“We will support them!”) The speaker had a great deal of confidence in Mr. Walsh, but he preferred a good constitution, a new constitution, every time, and anything less than a new constitution would not suit him.
The miserable rag of a constitution we had did not afford adequate representation nor impose proper restrictions upon the power of the Throne. He believed it was written on the hearts of those before him, “a new constitution, and that speedily.” It was the height of folly to suppose that commercial men and others in the community could stand and hold these men in their places. We had tried this kind of things for the last six years. With a good constitution we would have peace—peace flowing like a river. The franchise will be reconstructed and the king will have power as great as the Queen of Great Britain, and that ought to be enough for him. If to his own rights he wants to add the rights of 75,000 subjects he is not going to have them. The revolution of thought would be followed by a revolution of arms, as it always had been, if our reasonable requests were not granted. He pledged his life, every cent that he possessed, and his sacred honor under that flag that sheltered him from his birth. (Cheer.) If the men would not put this thing through the women would. He referred to the mental agony the women had endured these passed years for want of proper protection against disease, many having had to isolate their children in foreign lands. No man can stop or stay this movement now. The sails are set, the ship is in motion; we can not go back. Push her forward into the open sea. (Cheers.)
Mr. Kinney then spoke several minutes in Hawaiian.
Hon. S. B. Dole, being called upon, said: Fellow citizens: There are two thoughts to which I will call your attention in our constitution. First, “The King conducts his Government for the common good.” The second is like unto it, “All men are allowed to assemble to consult upon the common good.” We have a right to be here, and we have assembled according to law; but we would not be here to-day if the King had conducted the Government for the common good. He has not done so. This meeting has come together to consider the public interests, and is composed of men who are determined to have good government. As I understand the situation, this meeting is called to give the King one chance to fall into line for political reform-just one chance. I do not say he will take the chance. I am not here to talk about the ministers, but about the King (loud cheers), for he is not conducting the Government for the benefit of the people. I need not detail the fact of bad government by the King to you; it relates to all departments of the administration; interference with everything appertaining to government has been his rule, and he has sold his sacred oath of office to the highest bidder. We are here for no unlawful purpose; we are here to demand that the King cleanse the Government, and that he return this money—which every man, woman, and child in the country believes he took unlawfully—not for the sake of the parties to whom it belongs, but to show that the Government is to be conducted henceforth upon clean principles. We remember the last six years, during which the rights of the people have been trampled under foot, the representative principle of government has been practically destroyed, the principle of ministerial responsibility interrupted, and public moneys recklessly squandered. These things cannot go on. This movement means political reform, and it has gone so far that, from the talk I hear as I go along the street, opposition or hostility to it is in the public mind something akin to treason.
Mr. J. A. McCandless, whom the chairman introduced as a gentleman who went down into the bowels of the earth, spoke next. He said he supported these resolutions, and in doing so he believed that he represented some 1,500 people. He was ready to support them with the last drop of his blood. All were united—merchants, mechanics, laborers, and all. He believed that there was a unanimity which had never before been attained. Fifteen hundred persons had been disfranchised for no other reason than they were white men, and they were not going to have this much longer. They had a right to have their franchise granted unconditionally. [A voice, We’ll take them.] He was afraid there were some among them who were weak-kneed. One man had got his gun and taken it home, and left a note upon the table with the words “Good-bye; shall be out of town till next Sunday.” That there were some who wanted bracing up. There were men among them the grandchildren of those who had fought at Waterloo, and made it what it was, of the noble six hundred at Balaklava. They had among them some of the heroes of Appomattox, and also of the Franco-German war. These were the kind of men this community is made up of. Abraham Lincoln had remarked on the eve of the late war, “it may be necessary to set the foot down hard.” And a great newspaper correspondent who was present said that he knew then for the first time that the great North was [Page 800]ready, and, concluded the speaker, from what I see here to-day I know that we are ready to put our foot down. (Applause.)
Hon. C. R. Bishop said: This is unquestionably an important meeting, the most important ever held in Honolulu. I see before me mechanics, merchants, professional men. They are not here for amusement, but because they feel that the course of affairs calls for prompt and determined action. We should discuss matters in a peaceable manner without any threats; we do not need any threats. The fact that so many men have come here shows that we do not need any threats. I came here in 1846, became naturalized in 1849, and have lived under five kings. We thought we had really a liberal constitution, because those kings did not encroach upon the rights of their subjects. But we have found out within the last few years that our constitution is defective, partly on account of bad advice to the King, but largely on his own account. The King has encroached on our rights. We have had very few mass meetings, but when we have one like this I believe it means either a new constitution or one with material reforms, which I am sure we shall have. I come here as a Hawaiian, not for any class or clique. If it was any class or clique, I would not come here at all. (Applause.)
Mr. Henry Waterhouse spoke in native in substance as follows:
Fellow-citizens of Hawaii nei—Hon. C. R. Bishop says the constitution is full of faults. If so, let us have a new constitution. Therefore, let us stand by the resolutions. We shall see from those who stand by these resolutions who are the friends of the Hawaiian people. My counsel is to stand firm and go before the King without fear, and make our demands fearlessly.
Mr. R. Jay Green said: Gentlemen, fellow-citizens, friends, neighbors, and brothers: I was not aware that I should be asked to speak here or I should have put on my other coat. But the boys left me to come here, and I had to follow them, and all I want to say is that I expect to keep on following the boys. (Applause.)
Hon. L. A. Thurston said: Gentlemen, you and I have been waiting a long time for this day, but it has come. It is a long lane that has no turning, but we have come to the turning of our lane. There are persons here to speak to all of you, but I am here to speak as a Hawaiian. My ancestors came here in the reign of Kamehameha I. I was born and brought up here, and I mean to die here. Hawaii is good enough for me. I speak for Hawaiians, because you foreigners can speak for yourselves and can look out for yourselves, but many of these Hawaiians are ignorant and have been deserted by their leaders. I am the representative of the constituency of Molokai, and spent some weeks there last summer, and I wish to say that the Hawaiians on Molokai are with us to a man. It may be that this letter from His Majesty was meant to head off these resolutions. I remember reading somewhere of a man who was going to shoot a coon, and the coon said, “Don’t shoot; I’ll come down.” The King is the coon and this meeting the gun. [Great applause.] History repeats itself. We all remember the King’s message to the Legislature in 1884, recommending economy, and asking that it should begin with His Majesty’s privy purse. That message was accepted in good faith, and there was a grand torchlight procession to the palace to thank him—I carried a torch in that procession myself—but it was followed by appropriations enormously in excess of the revenue. And again, in 1886, came another message for retrenchment, but this time it didn’t wash. There was a meeting during the Moreno time to protest against bad government, and into the midst of it someone came and said, “It’s all right; the King has ap pointed a new ministry,” and there were three cheers for the King, and that was the last of it. Are there any cheers to-day? (Loud cries of No! No!) The King was taken at his word. I noticed that there were no cheers proposed for the King to-day. It is not sufficient to have the King accept these resolutions; we must have a new constitution, and must have it now. A constitution is a contract, and if the King and the people both agree to change it, there is no violation of constitutional rights and no revolution. If we have let things come to this pitch, and take the King at his word, it is to rely on wind. Let a change in the constitution be the first and last and only request, if necessary, but let that be the one to be insisted on till the last moment.
*Hon. Paul Isenberg said that on many points he agreed to these resolutions, but as far as the new constitution was concerned he was somewhat doubtful. Let it be done legally. The subject had been broached the previous day of his entering a new ministry. If so, he would not be a party to pushing a new constitution through in a hurry. It would not be legal unless carried by the Legislature. (Dr. C. T. Rodgers: What assembly gave us our present constitution?) We could have an extra session to pass the constitution, and another extra session to ratify it. (Hisses and applause.) He hoped all would be peaceful and not hasty. (A voice: We have been waiting six years.) If so, we could very well wait another. (Great uproar and cries of “No, no.” Dr. Emerson: “We won’t wait another year.” A voice: “We mean to have it now.” Cries of “Sit down.”) The speaker took his seat.[Page 801]
H. L. Swinton said, in Hawaiian: I am not going to speak in the English language, because the haoles all think as I do. It has been said that this meeting is called to incite to kill the Hawaiians. I have always been called a rebel. This is because I am not afraid to speak my mind, and my mind is firm and clear that the Government is false and corrupt. My advice is to stand by the resolution for a new constitution, and let us not be satisfied with promises by the King. Let us not be satisfied when the King tells us he has turned out the cabinet, what more do you want. Let us follow the lead of Thurston, and demand a new constitution.
Mr. Alexander Young, who represented the Honolulu Iron Works, said he was proud to stand upon the platform and look so many honest men in the face. They were men who not only looked what they meant, but meant what they looked. He was no speaker, but a thinker. He came here twenty-three years ago, and at one time, when traveling, he was proud of living here. Lately he had done some traveling, and had to hide his face when he found this flag stinking abroad. He represented a large class of men not only in this country, but all over the world. The class he represented were the horny-handed sons of toil, who earned their honest dollar and could lie down and sleep without it burning them. He was ready to shoulder a musket to defend Kalakaua, and not a knave. Some had? counseled them to wait; but he said wait not, strike the iron while it is hot. Kalakaua had had a great many years to let us see whether he was a man or not. The tension about our hearts had long been strained, and to-day the strings had broken, and we must express ourselves. He was not a lawyer, and could not tell whether we could have a constitution in five minutes; but necessity was the mother of invention, and we must get it as soon as possible. There was not a coward in that assembly—not one, though it was not always wise to rush into mischief. If the King would not do what was wanted, he must be made to do it. Let us exercise patience and put the matter in the hands of people able to deal with it. Let us have a new constitution, and if it is not legal, the same power would make another.
Dr. Tucker said that when he came to this country there were mutterings of discontent, and it was all Walter Murray Gibson. We arraign the King. He does not know that this assembly—largely composed of men who think that kings are not of much account anyway—he does not know that if it was not for the wise counsel of men in this movement his head would have been off before this. They could not wait any longer for reform. The King had better be a saint while he is well, as well as when he is sick.
Mr. L. C. Ables, who represented the clerks, said that he had come here to seek his fortune, but had not seen it. He was an American; the stars and stripes was his flag, but the Hawaiian flag would suit him as well, and he was going to stay by it. The class whom he represented wanted a new constitution, and they were going to have it. He was not a lawyer, but he had been told by lawyers that the constitution was promulgated by a king. It could be done again. Some would ask, “Are you going to get it?” In illustration of his determination to have it, he related an anecdote about a certain youth who had evinced an indomitable determination in hunting for a woodchuck wherewith to regale the appetite of a hungry Methodist preacher. The boy chased the woodchuck into his hole. A man came along and asked the boy if he could get him, “Mister,” said the boy, “I’ve got to get him;” and for the constitution, we’ve got to have it!
Hon. Cecil Brown said, in Hawaiian: “Perhaps you ask, why is this meeting of citizens? Perhaps the thought may enter that it is to propose to do evil to Hawaiians. Not so. I am an Hawaiian, and was born under this flag, and under it my bones shall be buried. Has there been good government in the past few years? No. Has the legislative right been respected? No. We want, then, a new constitution. We want the King to think of the public good, not of personal ends. We have just seen the jubilee of Queen Victoria, and if Kalakaua would follow her example, he might reign as long. But if Queen Victoria were to act as badly as Kalakaua, she would not live an hour. Let us, then, go for a new constitution.
Mr. E. M. Walsh, manager of the Paia plantation, Maui, said that he represented the planters, who, he felt sure, would indorse the sentiments so ably expressed. In 1882 a deputation representing the plantations on the other islands waited on the King to petition His Majesty to give them honest government. The result was they were snubbed. The King afterwards went to North Kona, and with the assistance of his soldiers defeated Pilipo in the election. They did not want to use threats, but to-day they were prepared, and would not be again insulted. He believed it would be wise to change the constitution. He did not know the best way of doing it, but in view of the consummate skill which had brought this movement forward, he was ready to leave it to the thirteen gentlemen to see that it was done right. It seemed to him, however, that this was a time to have the voice of the people. From Maui all were with them. In 1882, as he had said, the King let them go with false promises. They took his word then. Now, let us prepare a constitution and say this is what we want and what we must have. (Applause.)[Page 802]
Mr. J. M. Vivas then read the resolutions in Portuguese, and made a speech which evidently went to the hearts of his countrymen.
Mr. J. G. Tucker said they had heard talk about this flag and that flag, but they had gone into this thing as people of all nationalities merged into Hawaiians. They had come and meant to stay till they got what they wanted.
Mr. W. H. Rice, of Kauai, spoke in the native language, as follows:
Hawaiian citizens, from Hawaii to Niihau; from northwest to southeast; we want to clean up the Government. Has the Government been clean? No! The roads are wasting and groaning from one end to another of the land. Where is the money for the roads? Sent on an exploration With the Kaimiloa. If we go asking for bread, shall we be satisfied with stones? Some one asked me to-day if I had my gun? Well, yes; I am a cattle-drover, and I need one. It has been well said that the ship of this movement has been launched, the anchor is weighed, the sails set, now let us take the helm and steer.
Lieut. C. W. Ashford was the last speaker. He appeared upon the platform in uniform, and armed with a rifle and belt of cartridges. He stated that he was under military orders, and had been commanded by his superior officer not to indulge in a political speech. He had not had the privilege of listening to all the speeches, but from reports which had been carried to the corps outside, he understood that a gentleman representing vast moneyed interests here had counselled the meeting to wait another year for a new constitution.
Here the rifle company marched round the outer edge of the building and took up their position inside to hear the speech of their comrade, and as they did so, three rousing cheers and a tiger were given for the “boys.”
Lieut. Ashford, resuming, acknowledged the compliment on behalf of the corps. He had joined it three years ago in anticipation of trouble such as they saw that day. Returning to Mr. Isenberg’s remark, he said that gentleman, in view of his position, would naturally have an aversion to anything having a tendency to disturbance. He (the speaker) did not want to fight, but by heaven if we did—.
If we set about getting reform under the present constitution we might wait till our grandchildren were gray. He felt sure Mr. Isenberg did not express the sentiments of that meeting, certainly not those of the Honolulu Rifles. At the same time he had the greatest respect for the great nation that gentleman represented. He thought that Germans were pretty well deckled not to submit to dictation abroad, however much they might at home.
If armed foemen should throng here, he did not think the German foot would go back. He wished to say a few words on the merits of a new constitution. It has been objected that we could not have it at once, because such a thing would he unconstitutional and illegal. He would show the fallacy of that argument. In 1864, when Kamehameha V conyoked his legislature, it was thought that a new constitution was wanted. After some weeks they failed to agree upon one satisfactory to His Majesty. The Legislature was arbitrarily dismissed, and the King, without even saying “By your leave,” forced upon them a new constitution. That was the constitution we were living under to-day, and some people had the gall to say we were living under a constitutional government. He held that nothing was constitutional which was forced upon the people without their consent. The present constitution did not adequately protect personal rights, and it gave the King power which no monarch in a civilized country in the present day possessed. Who had ever heard of an absolute veto by the monarch any where in recent years? King Kalakaua had a great many very pleasant qualities, and many which were not so pleasant. Personally, he had behaved in a very friendly manner to the speaker when he came here, and perhaps would still if he were to truckle to him as some did. Cries of “Time” being heard, he concluded by urging upon all not to let the matter drop until some sensible and concerted action was taken. (Applause.)
Hon. W. R. Castle moved the adoption of the resolutions, seconded by Dr. Emerson and many others. On being put to the meeting they were carried unanimously, there being a roar of ayes, and dead silence when Mr. Jones put the question: “Contrary minded!”
The chairman stated, as the meeting was dispersing, that he had been requested to say that Mr. Gibson had sent for a squad of the Honolulu Rifles to go down to his house and protect him against the Hawaiians.
The committee immediately waited on the King, who stated that he was willing to give an answer offhand; but the committee informed him that they would leave the documents in his hands, and expect a reply in writing.
The meeting was thoroughly orderly throughout, but it was strong and determined.
After the meeting the committee of thirteen proceeded to the palace and presented the resolutions to the King, requesting a reply.[Page 803]
The next day the King called a meeting composed of the American minister, W. H. Merrill; the British commissioner, James Hay Wodehonse; the French commissioner, Henri Feer, and the Portuguese commissioner, A. de Souza Canavarro, to whom he offered to transfer the powers vested in him as King. These gentlemen refused to accept the trust, but advised the King to lose no time in forming a new cabinet and signing a new constitution, which would meet the demands of the people. Accordingly, in the afternoon, the following reply was forwarded to the citizen’s committee:
the king’s reply.
To Honorable Paul Isenberg and the gentlemen composing the committee of a meeting of subjects and citizens.
Gentlemen: In acknowledging the receipt of the resolutions adopted at a mass meeting held yesterday and presented to us by you, we are pleased to convey through you to our loyal subjects as well as to the citizens of Honolulu our expression of good will and our gratification that our people have taken the usual constitutional step in presenting their grievances.
To the first proposition contained in the resolutions passed by the meeting, whose action you represent, we reply that it has been substantially complied with by the formal resignation of the ministry, which took place on the 28th day of June, and was accepted on that date, and that we had already requested the Hon. W. L. Green to form a new cabinet on the day succeeding the resignation of the cabinet.
To the second proposition we reply that Mr. Walter M. Gibson has severed all his connections with the Hawaiian Government by resignation.
To the third proposition we reply that we do not admit the truth of the matter stated therein, but will submit the whole subject to our new cabinet, and will gladly act according to their advice, and will cause restitution to be made by the parties found responsible.
To the fourth proposition we reply that at our command Mr. Junius Kaae resigned the office of registrar of conveyance on the 28th day of June, and his successor has been appointed.
To the fifth proposition we reply that the specific pledges required of us are each severally acceded to.
We are pleased to assure the members of the committee and our loyal subjects that we are, and shall at all times be, anxious and ready to coöperate with our councillors and advisers, as well as with our intelligent and patriotic citizens in all matters touching the honor, welfare, and prosperity of our Kingdom.
Given at our palace this first day of July, A. D. 1887, and the fourteenth year of our reign.
The new cabinet, consisting of Messrs. W. L. Green, finance; Godfrey Brown, foreign affairs; Lorrin A. Thurston, interior, and C. W. Ashford, attorney-general, were sworn in the same day, and the revolution was practically over. It only remained to sign the new constitution. This document was prepared with great care, a large number of the members of the Hawaiian league being present and taking part in the debates. The document was ready on Wednesday, July 6, received the King’s signature at 6.15 p.m. of that day, and was duly proclaimed on the next, copies being sent forward to the other islands.
Without the organization known as the Hawaiian league, this revolution could never have taken place. The moment that the members were called upon they were ready and well armed. Without the assistance of Major V. V. Ashford, who had command of the Honolulu rifles, order could not have been kept. To the gentlemen who form that corps the citizens of Honolulu owe a deep debt of gratitude. For two days Honolulu was under martial law, and yet the most perfect order was kept, the banks and business places were open, and there was perfect security to both life and property. It was the most peaceful and most complete of revolutions, but it was so because the power was there to sustain, it.
A word or two about Mr. Gibson. He was arrested by the military on the morning of July 1, and was handed over to the civil authorities on a charge of embezzlement on the evening of the Saturday. He was permitted to remain in his house under guard, but on July 5 was removed to the prison. When brought before the police court the attorney-general entered a nolle pros., and Mr. Gibson quietly got on board the brigantine John D. Spreckels, which was leaving that same day, and sailed for California. Thus bringing one of the most unpleasant episodes in Hawaiian history to a conclusion.[Page 804]
the two constitutions.
|Constitution of 1864.||Constitution of 1887.|
|Granted by His Majesty Kamehameha V., by the grace of God, King of the Hawaiian Islands, on the twentieth day of August, A. D. 1864.||Whereas, the constitution of this Kingdom, heretofore in force, contains many provisions subversive of civil rights and incompatible with enlightened constitutional government.|
|And whereas, it has become imperative, in order to restore order and tranquility and the confidence necessary to a further maintenance of the present Government, that a new constitution should be at once promulgated:|
|Now, therefore, I, Kalakaua, King of the Hawaiian Islands, in my capacity as sovereign of this Kingdom, and as the representative of the people hereunto by them duly authorized and empowered, do annul and abrogate the constitution promulgated by Kamehameha the Fifth, on the 20th day of August, A. D. 1864, and do proclaim and promulgate this constitution.|
|Article 1. God hath endowed all men with certain inalienable rights, among which are life, liberty, and the right of acquiring, possessing, and protecting property, and of pursuing and obtaining safety and happiness.||Article 1. God hath endowed all men with certain inalienable rights, among which are life, liberty, and the right of acquiring, possessing, and protecting property, and of pursuing and obtaining safety and happiness.|
|Article 2. All men are free to worship God according to the dictates of their own consciences; but this sacred privilege hereby secured shall not be so construed as to justify acts of licentiousness, or practices inconsistent with the peace or safety of the Kingdom.||Article 2. All men are free to worship God according to the dictates of their own consciences; but this sacred privilege hereby secured shall not be so construed as to justify acts of licentiousness, or practices inconsistent with the peace or safety of the Kingdom.|
|Article 3. All men may freely speak, write, and publish their sentiments on all subjects, being responsible for the abuse of that right, and no law shall be enacted to restrain the liberty of speech or of the press, except such laws as may be necessary for the protection of His Majesty the King and the royal family.||Article 3. All men may freely speak, write, and publish their sentiments on all subjects, being responsible for the abuse of that right, and no law shall be enacted to restrain the liberty of speech or of the press.|
|Article 4. All men shall have the right, in an orderly and peaceable manner, to assemble, without arms, to consult upon the common good, and to petition the King or Legislative assembly for redress of grievances.||Article 4. All men shall have the righty in an orderly and peaceable manner, to assemble, without arms, to consult upon the common good, and to petition the King or Legislature for redress of grievances.|
|Article 5. The privilege of the writ of habeas corpus belongs to all men, and shall not be suspended, unless by the King, when in cases of rebellion or invasion the public safety shall require its suspension.||Article 5. The privilege of the writ of habeas corpus belongs to all men, and shall not be suspended, unless by the King, when, in case of rebellion or invasion, the public safety shall require its suspension.|
|Article 6. No person shall be subject to punishment for any offense, except on due and legal conviction thereof in a court having jurisdiction of the case.||Article 6. No person shall be subject to punishment for any offense, except on due and legal conviction thereof, in a court having jurisdiction of the case.|
|Article 7. No person shall be held to answer for any crime or offense (except in cases of impeachment, or for offenses within the jurisdiction of a police or district justice, or in summary proceedings for contempt), unless upon indictment, fully and plainly describing such crime or offense, and he shall have the right to meet the witnesses who are produced [Page 805]against him face to face; to produce witnesses and proofs in his own favor; and by himself, or his counsel, at his election, to examine the witnesses produced by himself, and cross-examine those produced against him, and to be fully heard in his defence. In all cases in which the right of trial by jury has been heretofore used, it shall be held inviolable forever, except in actions of debt or assumpsit in which the amount claimed is less than fifty dollars.||Article 7. No person shall be held to answer for any crime or offense (except in cases of impeachment, or for offenses within the jurisdiction of a police or district justice, or in summary proceedings for contempt), unless upon indictment, fully and plainly describing such crime or offence, and he shall have the right to meet the witnesses who are produced against him face to face; to produce witnesses and proof in his own favor; and by himself or his counsel, at his election, to examine the witnesses produced by himself, and cross-examine those produced against him, and to be fully heard in his own defence. In all cases in which the right of trial by jury has been heretofore used, it shall be held inviolable forever, except in actions of debt or assumpsit in which the amount claimed is less than fifty dollars.|
|Article 8. No person shall be required to answer again for any offence of which he has been duly convicted, or of which he has been duly acquitted upon a good and sufficient indictment.||Article 8. No person shall be required to answer again for an offense of which he has been duly convicted, or of which he has been duly acquitted.|
|Article 9. No person shall be compelled, in any criminal case, to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property without due process of law.||Article 9. No person shall be compelled, in any criminal case, to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property without due process of law.|
|Article 10. No person shall sit as a judge or juror, in any case in which his relative is interested, either as plaintiff or defendant, or in the issue of which the said judge or juror may have, either directly or through a relative, any pecuniary interest.||Article 10. No person shall sit as a judge or juror, in any case in which his relative, by affinity, or by consanguinity within the third degree, is interested, either as plaintiff or defendant, or in the issue of which the said judge or juror may have, either directly or through such relative, any pecuniary interest.|
|Article 11. Involuntary servitude, except for crime, is forever prohibited in this Kingdom; whenever a slave shall enter Hawaiian territory he shall be free.||Article 11. Involuntary servitude, except for crime, is forever prohibited in this Kingdom. Whenever a slave shall enter Hawaiian territory he shall be free.|
|Article 12. Every person has the right to be secure from all unreasonable searches and seizures of his person, his house, his papers, and effects; and no warrants shall issue, but on probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and describing the place to be searched and the persons or things to be seized.||Article 12. Every person has the right to be secure from all unreasonable searches and seizures of his person, his house, his papers, and effects; and no warrants shall issue, except on probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and describing the place to be searched and the persons or things to be seized.|
|Article 13. The King conducts his Government for the common good, and not for the profit, honor, or private interest of any one man, family, or class of men anions: his subjects.||Article 13. The Government is conducted for the common good, and not for the profit, honor, or private interest of any one man, family, or class of men.|
|Article 14. Each member of society has a right to be protected by it, in the enjoyment of his life, liberty, and property, according to law; and, therefore, he shall be obliged to contribute his proportional share to the expense of this protection, and to give his personal services, or an equivalent when necessary; but no part of the property of any individual shall be taken from him or applied to public uses without his own consent or the enactment of the legislative assembly, except the same shall be necessary for the military operations of the Kingdom in time of war or insurrection; and whenever the public exigencies may require that the property of any individual should be appropriated to public uses he shall receive a reasonable compensation therefor.||Article 14. Each member of society has a right to be protected in the enjoyment of his life, liberty, and property, according to law; and, therefore, he shall be obliged to contribute his proportional share to the expense of this protection, and to give his personal services, or an equivalent, when necessary. Private property may be taken for public use, but only upon due process of law and just compensation.|
|Article 15. No subsidy, duty, or tax of any description shall be established or levied without the consent of the legislative [Page 806]assembly; nor shall any money be drawn from the public treasury without such consent, except when between the sessions of the legislative assembly the emergencies of war, invasion, rebellion, pestilence, or other public disaster shall arise, and then not without the concurrence of all the cabinet and of a majority of the whole privy council; and the minister of finance shall render a detailed account of such expenditure to the legislative assembly.||Article 15. No subsidy, duty, or tax of any description shall be established or levied without the consent of the Legislature; nor shall any money be drawn from the public treasury without such consent, except when the sessions of the Legislature, the emergencies of war, invasion, rebellion, pestilence, or other public disaster shall arise, and then not without the concurrence of all the cabinet and of a majority of the whole privy council; and the minister of finance shall render a detailed account of such expenditure to the Legislature.|
|Article 16. No retrospective laws shall ever be enacted.||Article 16. No retrospective laws shall ever be enacted.|
|Article 17. The military shall always be subject to the laws of the land, and no soldier shall, in time of peace, be quartered in any house without the consent of the owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by the Legislature.||Article 17. The military shall always be subject to the laws of the land, and no soldier shall, in time of peace, be quartered in any house without the consent of the owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner prescribed by the Legislature.|
|Article 18. Every elector shall be privileged from arrest on election days during his attendance at election, and in going to and returning therefrom, except in cases of treason, felony, or breach of the peace.||Article 18. Every elector shall be privileged from arrest on election days during his attendance at election, and in going to and returning therefrom, except in case of treason, felony, or breach of the peace.|
|Article 19. No elector shall be so obliged to perform military duty, on the day of election, as to prevent his voting, except in time of war or public danger.||Article 19. No elector shall be so obliged to perform military duty, on the day of election, as to prevent his voting, except in time of war or public danger.|
|Article 20. The supreme power of the Kingdom in its exercise is divided into the executive, legislative, and judicial; these shall always be preserved distinct, and no judge of a court of record shall ever be a member of the legislative assembly.||Article 20. The supreme power of the Kingdom in its exercise is divided into the executive, legislative, and judicial; these shall always be preserved distinct, and no executive or judicial officers, or any contractor or employee of the Government, or any person in the receipt of salary or emolument from the Government, shall be eligible to election to the Legislature of the Hawaiian Kingdom, or to hold the position of an elective member of the same. And no member of the Legislature shall, during the time for which he is elected, be appointed to any civil office under the Government, except that of a member of the Cabinet.|
|Article 21. The Government of this Kingdom is that of a constitutional monarchy, under His Majesty Kamehameha V, his heirs and successors.||Article 21. The Government of this Kingdom is that of a constitutional monarchy, under His Majesty Kalakaua, his heirs and successors.|
|Article 22. The Crown is hereby permanently confirmed to His Majesty Kamehameha V, and to the heirs of his body lawfully begotten, and to their lawful descendants in a direct line; failing whom, the Crown shall descend to Her Royal Highness the Princess Victoria Kamamalu Kaahumanu, and the heirs of her body lawfully begotten, and their descendants in a direct line. The succession shall be to the senior male child, and to the heirs of his body; failing a male child, the Succession shall be to the senior female child, and to the heirs of her body. In case there is no heir as above provided, then the successor shall be the person whom the Sovereign shall appoint with the consent, of the nobles, and publicly proclaims such during the King’s life, [Page 807]but should there be no such appointmen; and proclamation, and the throne should become vacant, then the Cabinet Council, immediately after the occurring of such vacancy, shall cause a meeting of the legislative assembly, who shall elect by ballot some native Alii of the Kingdom as successor to the throne; and the successor so elected shall become a new Stirps for a royal family; and the succession from the Sovereign thus’ elected, shall be regulated by the same law as the present royal family of Hawaii.||Article 22. The Crown is hereby permanently confirmed to His Majesty Kalakaua, and to the heirs of his body lawfully begotten, and to their lawful descendants in a direct line; failing whom the Crown shall descend to Her Royal Highness the Princess Liliuokalani, and heirs of her body lawfully begotten, and their lawful descendants in a direct line. The succession shall be to the senior male child, and to the heirs of his body; failing a male child, the succession shall be to the senior female child, and to the heirs of her body. In case there is no heir as above provided, the successor shall be the person whom the Sovereign shall appoint with the consent of the nobles, and publicly proclaim during the Sovereign’s life; but should there be no such appointment and proclamation, and the throne should become vacant, then the Cabinet immediately after the occurring of such vacancy shall cause a meeting of the Legislature, who shall elect by ballot some native Alii of the Kingdom as successor to the throne; and the successor so elected shall become a new Stirps for a royal family; and the succession from the Sovereign thus elected shall be regulated by the same law as the present royal family of Hawaii.|
|Article 23. It shall not be lawful for any member of the royal family of Hawaii who may by law succeed to the throne, to contract marriage without the consent of the reigning sovereign. Every marriage so contracted shall be void, and the person so contracting a marriage may, by the proclamation of the reigning Sovereign be declared to have forfeited his or her right to the throne, and after such proclamation, the right of succession shall vest in the next heir as though such offender were dead.||Article 23. It shall not be lawful for any member of the royal family of Hawaii who may by law succeed to the throne, to contract marriage without the consent of the reigning Sovereign. Every marriage so contracted shall be void, and the person so contracting a marriage may, by the proclamation of the reigning Sovereign, be declared to have forfeited his or her right to the throne, and after such proclamation, the right of succession shall vest in the next heir as though such offender were dead.|
|Article 24. His Majesty Kamehameha V will, and his successors upon coining to the throne shall, take the following oath: I solemnly swear, in the presence of Almighty God, to maintain the constitution of the Kingdom whole and inviolate, and to govern in conformity therewith.||Article 24. His Majesty Kalakaua will, and his successors shall, take the following oath: I solemnly swear, in the presence of Almighty God, to maintain the constitution of the Kingdom whole and inviolate, and to govern in conformity therewith.|
|Article 25. No person shall ever sit upon the throne who has been convicted of any infamous crime, or who is insane or an idiot.||Article 25. No person shall sit upon the throne who has been convicted of any infamous crime, or who is insane, or an idiot.|
|Article 26. The King is the commander-in-chief of the army and navy, and of all other military forces of the Kingdom, by sea and land; and has full power by himself, or by any officer or officers he may appoint, to train and govern such forces as he may judge best for the defense and safety of the Kingdom. But he shall never proclaim war without the consent of the legislative assembly.||Article 26. The King is the commander-in-chief of the army and navy and of all other military forces of the Kingdom, by sea and land. But he shall never proclaim war without the consent of the Legislature; and no military or naval force shall be organized except by the authority of the Legislature.|
|Article 27. The King, by and with the consent of his privy council, has the power to grant reprieves and pardons, after conviction, for all offences, except in cases of impeachment.||Article 27. The King, by and with the advice of his privy council, and with the consent of the Cabinet, has the power to grant reprieves and pardons, after conviction, for all offenses, except in case of impeachment.|
|Article 28. The King, by and with the consent of his privy council, convenes the legislative assembly at the seat of Government, or at a different place, if that should become dangerous from an enemy or any dangerous disorder; and in case of disagreement between His Majesty and the legislative assembly, he adjourns, prorogues, or dissolves it, but not beyond the next ordinary session; under any great emergency, he may convene the legislative assembly to extraordinary sessions.||Article 28. The King convenes the Legislature at the seat of Government, or at a different place, if that should become insecure from an enemy or any dangerous disorder, and prorogues the same; and in any great emergency he may, with the advice of the privy council, convene the Legislature in extraordinary session.|
|[Page 808]Article 29. The King has the power to make treaties. Treaties involving changes in the tariff or in any law of the Kingdom shall he referred for approval to the legislative assembly. The King appoints public ministers, who shall be commissioned, accredited, and instructed agreeably to the usage and law of nations.||Article 29. The King has the power to make treaties. Treaties involving changes in the tariff or in any law of the Kingdom, shall be referred for approval to the Legislature. The King appoints public ministers, who shall be commissioned, accredited, and instructed agreeably to the usage and law of nations.|
|Article 30. It is the King’s prerogative to receive and acknowledge public ministers; to inform the legislative assembly by royal message, from time to time, of the state of the Kingdom, and to recommend to its consideration such measures as he shall judge necessary and expedient.||Article 30. It is the King’s prerogative to receive and acknowledge public ministers; to inform the Legislature by royal message, from time to time, of the state of the Kingdom, and to recommend to its consideration such measures as he shall judge necessary and expedient.|
|Article 31. The person of the King is inviolable and sacred. His ministers are responsible. To the King belongs the executive power. All laws that have passed the legislative assembly shall require His Majesty’s signature, in order to their validity.||Article 31. The person of the King is inviolable and sacred. His ministers are responsible. To the King and the cabinet belongs the executive power. All laws that have passed the Legislature shall require His Majesty’s signature, in order to their validity, except as provided in article 48.|
|Article 32. Whenever, upon the decease of the reigning sovereign, the heir shall be less than 18 years of age, the royal power shall be exercised by a regent or council of regency, as hereinafter provided.||Article 32. Whenever, upon the decease of the reigning sovereign, the heir shall be less than 18 years of age, the royal power shall be exercised by a regent or council of regency, as hereinafter provided.|
|Article 33. It shall be lawful for the King at any time when he may be about to absent himself from the Kingdom, to appoint a regent or council of regency, who shall administer the Government in his name; and likewise the King may, by his last will and testament, appoint a regent or council of regency to administer the Government during the minority of any heir to the throne; and should a sovereign decease, leaving a minor heir, and having made no last will and testament, the cabinet council at the time of such decease shall be a council of regency until the legislative assembly, which shall be called immediately, may be assembled, and the legislative assembly immediately that it is assembled shall proceed to choose by ballot a regent or council of regency, who shall administer the Government in the name of the King, and exercise all the powers which are constitutionally vested in the King, until he shall have attained the age of 18 years, which age is declared to, be the legal majority of such sovereign.||Article 33. It shall be lawful for the King at any time when he may be about to absent himself from the Kingdom, to appoint a regent or council of regency, who shall administer the Government in his name; and likewise the King may, by his last will and testament, appoint a regent or council of regency to administer the Government during the minority of any heir to the throne; and should a sovereign decease, leaving a minor heir, and having made no last will and testament, the cabinet at the time of such decease shall be a council of regency until the Legislature, which shall be called immediately, be assembled, and the Legislature immediately that it is assembled shall proceed to choose by ballot a regent or council of regency, who shall administer the Government in the name of the King, and exercise all the powers which are vested in the King, until such heir shall have attained the age of 18 years, which age is declared to be the legal majority of such sovereign.|
|Article 34. The King is sovereign of all the chiefs and of all the people; the Kingdom is his.||Article 34. The King is sovereign of all the chiefs and of all the people.|
|Article 35. All titles of honor, orders, and other distinctions emanate from the King.||Article 35. All titles of honor, orders, and other distinctions emanate from the King.|
|Article 36. The King coins money and regulates the currency by law.||Article 36. The King coins money and regulates the currency by law.|
|Article 37. The King, in case of invasion or rebellion, can place the whole Kingdom or any part of it under martial law.||Article 37. The King, in case of invasion or rebellion, can place the whole Kingdom or any part of it under martial law.|
|[Page 809]Article 38. The national ensign shall not be changed, except by act of the Legislature.||Article 38. The national ensign shall not be changed, except by act of the Legislature.|
|Article 39. The King’s private lands and other property are inviolable.||Article 39. The King can not be sued or held to account in any court or tribunal of the Kingdom.|
|Article 40. The King can not be sued or held to account in any court or tribunal of the realm.||Article 40. There shall continue to be a council of state for advising the King in all matters for the good of the state, wherein he may require its advice, which council shall be called the King’s privy council of state, and the members thereof shall be appointed by the King to hold office during His Majesty’s pleasure, and which council shall have and exercise only such powers as are given to it by the constitution.|
|Article 41. There shall continue to be a council of state for advising the King in all matters for the good of the state, wherein he may require its advice, and for assisting him in administering the executive affairs of the Government in such manner as he may direct, which council shall be called the King’s privy council of state, and the members thereof shall be appointed by the King to hold office during His Majesty’s pleasure.||Article 41. The cabinet shall consist of the minister of foreign affairs, the minister of the interior, the minister of finance, and the attorney-general, and they shall be His Majesty’s special advisers in the executive affairs of the Kingdom; and they shall be ex officio members of His Majesty’s privy council of state. They shall be appointed and commissioned by the King, and shall be removed by him only upon a vote of want of confidence passed by a majority of all the elective members of the Legislature, or upon conviction of felony, and shall be subject to impeachment. No act of the King shall have any effect unless it be countersigned by a member of the cabinet, who, by that signature, makes himself responsible.|
|Article 42. The King’s cabinet shall consist of the minister of foreign affairs, the minister of the interior, the minister of finance, and the attorney-general of the Kingdom, and these shall be His Majesty’s special advisers in the executive affairs of the Kingdom; and they shall be ex officio members of His Majesty’s privy council of state. They shall be appointed and commissioned by the King, and hold office during His Majesty’s pleasure, subject to impeachment. No act of the King shall have any effect unless it be countersigned by a minister, who, by that signature, makes himself responsible.||Article 42. Each member of the cabinet shall keep an office at the seat of Government, and shall be accountable for the conduct of his deputies and clerks. The cabinet hold seats ex officio in the Legislature, with the right to vote, except on a question of want of confidence in them.|
|Article 43. Each member of the King’s cabinet shall keep an office at the seat of Government, and shall be accountable for the conduct of his deputies and clerks. The ministry hold seats ex officio as nobles in the legislative assembly.||Article 43. The minister of finance shall present to the Legislature, in the name of the Government, on the first day of each biennial session, the financial budget, in the Hawaiian and English languages.|
|Article 44. The minister of finance shall present to the legislative assembly, in the name of the Government, on the first day of the meeting of the Legislature, the financial budget, in the Hawaiian and English languages.||Article 44. The legislative power of the Kingdom is vested in the King and the Legislature, which shall consist of the nobles and representatives sitting together.|
|Article 45. The legislative power of the three estates of this Kingdom is vested in the King, and the legislative assembly, which assembly shall consist of the nobles, appointed by the King, and of the representatives of the people, sitting together.||Article 45. The legislative body shall be styled the Legislature of the Hawaiian Kingdom, and shall assemble, biennially, in the month of May. The first regular session shall be held in the year of our Lord eighteen hundred and eighty-eight.|
|[Page 810]Article 46. The legislative body shall assemble biennially, in the month of April, and at such other time as the King may judge necessary, for the purpose of seeking the welfare of the nation. This body shall be styled the Legislature of the Hawaiian Kingdom.||Article 46. Every member of the Legislature shall take the following oath: I solemnly swear, in the presence of Almighty God, that I will faith fully support the constitution of the Hawaiian Kingdom, and conscienciously and impartially discharge my duties as a member of the Legislature.|
|Article 47. Every member of the legislative assembly shall take the following oath: I most solemnly swear, in the presence of Almighty God, that I will faithfully support the constitution of the Hawaiian Kingdom, and conscientiously and impartially discharge my duties as a member of this Assembly.||Article 47. The Legislature, has full power and authority to amend the Constitution as hereinafter provided; and from time to time to make all manner of wholesome laws not repugnant to the constitution.|
|Article 48. The Legislature has full power and authority to amend the constitution as hereinafter provided; and from time to time to make all manner of wholesome laws not repugnant to the provisions of the constitution.||Article 48. Every bill which shall have passed the Legislature shall, before it becomes law, be presented to the King. If he approve he shall sign it and it shall thereby become a law, but if not, he shall return it, with his objections, to the Legislature, which shall enter the objections at large on their journal and proceed to reconsider it. If after such reconsideration it shall be approved by a two-thirds vote of all the elective members of the Legislature it shall become a law. In all such cases the vote shall be determined by yeas and nays, and the names of the persons voting for and against the bill shall be entered on the journal of the Legislature. If any bill shall not be returned by the King within ten days (Sunday excepted) after it shall have been presented to him, the same shall be a law in like manner as if he had signed it, unless the Legislature by their adjournment prevent its return, in which case it shall not be a law.|
|Article 49. The King shall signify his approval of any bill or resolution which shall have passed the legislative assembly, by signing the same previous to the final rising of the Legislature. But if he shall object to the passing of such bill or resolution he will return it to the legislative assembly, who shall enter the fact of such return on its journal, and such bill or resolution shall not be brought forward thereafter during the same session.||Article 49. The Legislature shall be the judge of the qualifications of its own members, except as may hereafter be provided by law, and a majority shall constitute a quorum to do business; but a smaller number may adjourn from day to day, and compel the attendance of absent members, in such manner and under such penalties as the Legislature may provide.|
|Article 50. The legislative assembly shall be the judge of the qualifications of its own members, and a majority shall constitute a quorum to do business; but a smaller number may adjourn from day to day, and compel the attendance of absent members, in such manner and under such penalties as the assembly may provide.||Article 50. The Legislature shall choose its own officers and determine the rules of its own proceedings.|
|Article 51. The legislative assembly shall choose its own officers and determine the rules of its own proceedings.||Article 51. The Legislature shall have authority to punish by imprisonment, not exceeding thirty days, every person, not a member, who shall be guilty of disrespect to the Legislature by any disorderly or contemptuous behavior in its presence; or who, during the time of its sitting, [Page 811]shall publish any false report of its proceedings, or insulting comments upon the same; or who shall threaten harm to the body or estate of any of its members for anything said or done in the Legislature: or who shall assault any of them therefor; or who shall assault or arrest any witness, or other person ordered to attend the Legislature, on his way going or returning: or who shall rescue any person arrested by order of the Legislature.|
|Article 52. The legislative assembly shall have authority to punish by imprisonment, not exceeding thirty days, every person, not a member, who shall be guilty of disrespect to the assembly, by any disorderly or contemptuous behavior in its presence; or who, during the time of its sitting, shall publish any false report of its proceedings, or insulting comments upon the same; or who shall threaten harm to the body or estate of any of its members, for anything said or done in the assembly; or who shall assault any of them therefor, or who shall assault or arrest any witness, or other person ordered to attend the assembly, in his way going or returning; or who shall rescue any person arrested by order of the assembly.||Article 52. The Legislature may punish its own members for disorderly behavior.|
|Article 53. The legislative assembly may punish its own members for disorderly behavior.||Article 53. The Legislature shall keep a journal of its proceedings; and the yeas and nays of the members, on any question, shall, at the desire of one-fifth of those present, be entered on the journal.|
|Article 54. The legislative assembly shall keep a journal of its proceedings; and the yeas and nays of the members on any question shall, at the desire of one-fifth of those present, be entered on the journal.||Article 54. The members of the Legislature shall, in all cases, except treason, felony, or breach of the peace, be privileged from arrest during their attendance at the sessions of the Legislature, and in going to and returning from the same; provided such privilege as to going and returning shall not cover a period of over twenty days; and they shall not be held to answer for any speech or debate made in the Legislature, in any court or place whatsoever.|
|Article 55. The members of the legislative assemby shall, in all cases, except treason, felony, or breach of the peace, be privileged from arrest during their attendance at the sessions of the Legislature, and in going to and returning from the same; and they shall not be held to answer for any speech or debate made in the assembly, in any court or place whatsoever.||Article 55. The representatives shall receive for their services a compensation to be determined by law, and paid out of the public treasury, but no increase of compensation shall take effect during the biennial term in which it shall have been made; and no law shall be passed increasing the compensation of representatives beyond the sum of two hundred and fifty dollars each for each biennial term.|
|Article 56. The representatives shall receive for their services a compensation to be ascertained by law, and paid out of the public treasury, but no increase of compensation shall take effect during the year in which it shall have been made; and no law shall be passed increasing the compensation of said representatives beyond the sum of one hundred and fifty dollars for each session.||Article 56. A noble shall be a subject of the Kingdom, who shall have attained the age of twenty-five years, and resided in the Kingdom three years, and shall be the owner of taxable property in this Kingdom of the value of three thousand dollars over and above all encumbrances, or in receipt of an income of not less than six hundred dollars per annum.|
|[Page 812]Article 57. The King appoints the nobles, who shall hold their appointments during life, subject to the provisions of Article 53; but their number shall not exceed twenty.||Article 57. The nobles shall be a court, with full and sole authority to hear and determine all impeachments made by the representatives, as the grand inquest of the Kingdom, against any officers of the Kingdom, for misconduct or maladministration in their offices; but previous to the trial of every impeachment the nobles shall respectively be sworn, truly and impartially to try and determine the charge in question, according to evidence and law. Their judgment, however, shall not extend further than to removal from office and disqualification to hold or enjoy any place of honor, trust, or profit under this Government; but the party so convicted shall be, nevertheless, liable to indictment, trial, judgment and punishment according to the laws of the land.|
|Article 58. No person shall be appointed a noble who shall not have attained the age of twenty-one years and resided in the Kingdom five years.||Article 58. Twenty-four nobles shall be elected, as follows: Six from the island of Hawaii; six from the islands of Maui, Molokai, and Lanai; nine from the island of Oahu, and three from the islands of Kauai and Niihau. At the first election held under this constitution the nobles shall be elected to serve until the general election to the Legislature for the year of our Lord 1890, at which election, and thereafter, the nobles shall be elected at the same time and places as the representatives. At the election for the year of our Lord 1890 one-third of the nobles from each of the divisions aforesaid shall be elected for two years, and one-third for four years, and one-third for six years, and the electors shall ballot for them for such terms, respectively; and at all subsequent general elections they shall be elected for six years. The nobles shall serve without pay.|
|Article 59. The nobles shall be a court with full and sole authority to hear and determine all impeachments made by the representatives, as the grand inquest of the Kingdom, against any officers of the Kingdom, for misconduct or maladministration in their offices; but previous to the trial of every impeachment the nobles shall respectively be sworn, truly and impartially to try and determine the charge in question, according to evidence and the law. Their judgment, however, shall not extend further than to removal from office and disqualification to hold or enjoy any place of honor, trust, or profit, under this Government; but the party so convicted, shall be nevertheless, liable to indictment, trial, judgment, and punishment according to the laws of the land. No Minister shall sit as a noble on the trial of any impeachment.||
Article 59. Every male resident of the Hawaiian Islands, of Hawaiian, American, or European birth or descent, who shall have attained the age of twenty years, and shall have paid his taxes, and shall have caused his name to be entered on the list of voters for nobles for his district, shall be an elector of nobles, and shall be entitled to vote at any election of nobles: provided,
Provided, however, that the requirements of a three years’ residence and of ability to read and comprehend an ordinary newspaper, printed either in the Hawaiian, English, or some European language, shall not apply to persons residing in the Kingdom at the time of the promulgation of this constitution, if they shall register and vote at the first election which shall be held under this constitution.
|Article 60. The representation of the people shall he based upon the principal of equality, and shall be regulated and apportioned by the legislature according to the population, to be ascertained, from time to time, by the official census. The representatives shall not be less in number than twenty-four, nor more than forty, who shall be elected biennially.||Article 60. There shall be twenty-four representatives of the people elected biennially, except those first elected under this constitution, who shall serve until the general election for the year of our Lord 1890. The representation shall be based upon the principles of equality, and shall be regulated and apportioned by the Legislature according to the population to be ascertained, from time to time, by the official census. But until such apportionment by the Legislature, the apportionment now established by law shall remain in force, with the following exceptions, namely, there shall be but two representatives for the districts of Hilo and Puna, on the island of Hawaii; but one for the districts of Lahaina and Kaanapali, on the island of Maui; and but one for the districts of Koolauloa and Waialua on the island of Cahu|
|Article 61. No person shall be eligible for a representative of the people who is insane or an idiot, nor unless he be a male subject of the Kingdom, who shall have arrived at the full age of twenty-one years, who shall know how to read and write, who shall understand accounts and shall have been domiciled in the Kingdom for at least three years—the last of which shall be the year immediately preceding his election—and who shall own real estate within the Kingdom of a clear value, over and above all incumbrances, of at least five hundred dollars, or who shall have an annual income of at least two hundred and fifty dollars, derived from any property or some lawful employment.||Article 61. No person shall be eligible as a representative of the people unless he be a male subject of the Kingdom who shall have arrived at the full age of twenty-one years, who shall know how to read, and write either the Hawaiian, English, or some European language, who shall understand accounts, who shall have been domiciled in the Kingdom for at least three years—the last of which shall be the year immediately preceding his election—and who shall own real estate within the Kingdom of a clear value, over and above all encumbrances, of at least five hundred dollars, or who shall have an annual income of at least two hundred and fifty dollars, derived from any property or some lawful employment.|
|Article 62. Every male subject of the Kingdom, who shall have paid his taxes, who shall have attained the age of twenty years, and shall have been domiciled in the Kingdom for one year immediately preceding the election, and shall be possessed of real property in the Kingdom, to the value, over and above all encumbrances, of one hundred and fifty dollars, or of a leasehold property on which the rent is twenty-five dollars per year, or of an income of not less than seventy-five dollars per year, derived from any property or some lawful employment, and shall know how to read and [Page 814]write, if born since the year 1840, and shall have caused his name to be entered on the list of voters of his district as may be provided by law, shall be entitled to one vote for the representative or representatives of that district: Provided, however, That no insane or idiotic person, nor any person who shall have been convicted of any infamous crime within this Kingdom, unless he shall have been pardoned by the King, and by the terms of such-pardon have been restored to all the rights of a subject, shall be allowed to vote.||Article 62. Every male resident of the Kingdom, of Hawaiian, American, or European birth or descent, who shall have taken an oath to support the constitution and laws in the manner provided for electors of nobles, who shall have paid his taxes, who shall have attained the age of twenty years, and shall have been domiciled in the Kingdom for one year immediately preceding the election, and shall know how to read and write either the Hawaiian, English, or some European language (if born since the year 1840), and shall have caused his name to be entered on the list of voters of his district as may be provided by law, shall be entitled to one vote for the representative or representatives of that district: Provided, however, That the requirements of being domiciled in the Kingdom for one year immediately preceding the election, and of knowing how to read and write, either the Hawaiian, English, or some European language, shall not apply to persons residing in this Kingdom at the time of the promulgation of this constitution if they shall register and vote at the first election which shall be held under this constitution.|
|Article 63. The property qualification of the representatives of the people, and of the electors, may be increased by law.||Article 63. No person shall sit as a noble or representative in the Legislature unless elected under, and in conformity with, the provisions of this constitution. The property or income qualification of representatives, of nobles, and of electors of nobles may be increased by law; and a property or income qualification of electors of representatives may be created and altered by law.|
|Article 64. The Judicial power of the Kingdom shall be vested in one supreme court and in such inferior courts as the Legislature may, from time to time, establish.||Article 64. The judiciary power of the Kingdom shall be vested in one supreme court, and in such inferior courts as the Legislature may, from time to time, establish.|
|Article 65. The supreme court shall consist of a chief justice and not less than two associate justices, any of whom may hold the court. The justices of the supreme court shall hold their offices during good behavior, subject to removal upon impeachment, and shall, at stated times, receive for their services a compensation, which shall not be diminished during their continuance in office: Provided, however, That any judge of the supreme court or any other court of record may be removed from office, on a resolution passed by two-thirds of the legislative assembly, for good cause shown to the satisfaction of the King; The judge against whom the legislative assembly may be about to proceed shall receive due notice thereof, accompanied by a copy of the causes alleged for his removal, at least ten days before the day on which the legislative assembly shall act thereon. He shall be heard before the legislative assembly,||Article 65. The supreme court shall consist of a chief justice, and not less than two associate justices, any one of whom may hold the court. The justices of the supreme court shall hold their offices during good behavior, subject to removal upon impeachment, and shall, at stated times, receive for their services a compensation, which shall not be diminished during their continuance in office: Provided, however, That any judge of the supreme court or any other court of record may be removed from office on a resolution passed by two-thirds of all the members of the Legislature, for good cause shown to the satisfaction of the King. The judge against whom the Legislature may be about to proceed shall receive notice thereof, accompanied by a copy of the causes alleged for his removal, at least ten days before the day on which the Legislature shall act thereon. He shall be heard before the Legislature.|
|Article 66. The judicial power shall be divided among the supreme court and the several inferior courts of the Kingdom in such manner as the legislature may, from time to time, prescribe, and the tenure of office in the inferior courts of the Kingdom shall be such as may be defined by the law creating them.||Article 66. The judicial power shall be divided among the supreme court and the several inferior courts of the Kingdom, in such manner as the Legislature may, from time to time, prescribe, and the tenure of office in the inferior courts of the Kingdom shall be such as may be defined by the law creating them.|
|Article 67. The judicial power shall extend to all cases in law and equity, arising under the constitution and laws of this Kingdom, and treaties made, or which shall be made under their authority, to all cases affecting public ministers and consuls, and to all cases of admiralty and maritime jurisdiction.||Article 67. The judicial power shall extend to all cases in law and equity, arising under the constitution and laws of this Kingdom, and treaties made, or which shall be made under their authority, to all cases affecting public ministers and consuls, and to all cases of admiralty and maritime jurisdiction.|
|[Page 815]Article 68. The chief justice of the supreme court shall he the chancellor of the Kingdom. He shall he ex officio president of the nobles in all cases of impeachment, unless when impeached himself, and exercise such jurisdiction in equity or other eases as the law may confer upon him; his decisions being subject, however, to the revision of the supreme court on appeal. Should the chief justice ever be impeached, some person specially commissioned by the King shall be president of the court of impeachment during such trial.||Article 68. The chief justice of the supreme court shall be the chancellor of the Kingdom. He shall be ex officio president of the nobles in all cases of impeachment, unless when impeached himself, and shall exercise such jurisdiction in equity or other cases as the law may confer upon him; his decisions being subject, however, to the revision of the supreme court on appeal. Should the chief justice ever be impeached, some person specially commissioned by the King shall be president of the court of impeachment during such trial.|
|Article 69. The decisions of the supreme court, when made by a majority of the justices thereof, shall be final and conclusive upon all parties.||Article 69. The decisions of the supreme court, when made by a majority of the justices thereof, shall be final and conclusive upon all parties.|
|Article 70. The King, his cabinet, and the legislative assembly shall have authority to require the opinions of the justices of the supreme court upon important questions of law and upon solemn occasions.||Article 70. The King, his cabinet, and the Legislature shall have authority to require the opinions of the justices of the supreme court upon important questions of law and upon solemn occasions.|
|Article 71. The King appoints the justices of the supreme court and all other judges of courts of record. Their salaries are fixed by law.||Article 71. The King appoints the justices of the supreme court and all other judges of the courts of record. Their salaries are fixed by law.|
|Article 72. No judge or magistrate can sit alone on an appeal or new trial in any case on which he may have given a previous judgment.||Article 72. No judge or magistrate shall sit all alone on an appeal or new trial in any case on which he may have given a previous judgment.|
|Article 73. No person shall ever hold any office of honor, trust, or profit under the Government of the Hawaiian Islands who shall, in due course of law, have been convicted of theft, bribery, perjury, forgery, embezzlement, or other high crime or misdemeanor, unless he shall have been pardoned by the King and restored to his civil rights, and by the express terms of his pardon declared to be appointable to offices of trust, honor, and profit.||Article 73. The following persons shall not be permitted to register for voting, to vote, or to hold office under any department of the Government, or to sit in the Legislature, namely: Any person who is insane or an idiot, or any person who shall have been convicted of any of the following-named offenses, viz: Arson, barratry, bribery, burglary, counterfeiting, embezzlement, felonious branding of cattle, forgery, gross cheat, incest, kidnapping, larceny, malicious burning, manslaughter in the first degree, murder, perjury, rape, robbery, sodomy, treason, subornation of perjury, and malfeasance in office, unless he shall have been pardoned by the King and restored to his civil rights, and by the express terms of his pardon declared to be eligible to offices of trust, honor, and profit.|
|Article 74. No officer of this Government shall hold any office or receive any salary from any other government or power whatever.||Article 74. No officer of this Government shall hold any office or receive any salary from any other government or power whatever.|
|Article 75. The Legislature votes the appropriations biennially, after due consideration of the revenue and expenditure for the two preceding years, and the estimates of the revenue and expenditure of the two succeeding years, which shall be submitted to them by the minister of finance.||Article 75. The Legislature votes the appropriation biennially, after due consideration of the revenue and expenditure for the two preceding years, and the estimates of the revenue and expenditure of the two succeeding years, which shall be submitted to them by the minister of finance.|
|Article 76. The enacting style in making and passing all acts and laws shall be: “Be it enacted by the King and the legislative assembly of the Hawaiian Islands, in the Legislature of the Kingdom assembled.”||Article 76. The enacting style in making and passing all acts and laws shall be: “Be it enacted by the King and the Legislature of the Hawaiian Kingdom.”|
|[Page 816]Article 77. To avoid improper influences which may result from intermixing in one and the same act such things as have no proper relation to each other, every law shall embrace but one object, and that shall be expressed in its title.||Article 77. To avoid improper influences which may result from intermixing in, one and the same act such things as have no proper relation to each other, every law shall embrace but one object, and that shall be expressed in its title.|
|Article 78. All laws now in force in this Kingdom shall continue and remain in full effect until altered or repealed by the Legislature, such parts only excepted as are repugnant to this constitution. All laws heretofore enacted, or that may hereafter be enacted, which are contrary to this constitution shall be null and void.||Article 78. Wherever by this constitution any act is to be done or performed by the King or the Sovereign, it shall, unless otherwise expressed, mean that such act shall be done and performed by the Sovereign by and with the advice and consent of the cabinet.|
|Article 79. This constitution shall be In force from the twentieth day of August, in the year one thousand eight hundred and sixty-four, but that there may be no failure of justice or inconvenience to the Kingdom from any change, all officers of this Kingdom at the time this constitution shall take effect shall have, hold, and exercise all the power to them granted, until other persons shall be appointed in their stead.||Article 79. All laws now in force in this Kingdom shall continue and remain in full effect until altered or repealed by the Legislature, such parts only excepted as are repugnant to this constitution. All laws heretofore enacted, or that may hereafter be enacted, which are contrary to this constitution shall be null and void.|
|Article 80. Any
amendment or amendments to this constitution may be
proposed in the legislative assembly, and if the
same shall be agreed to by a majority of members
thereof such proposed amendment or amendments shall
be entered on its journal, with the yeas and nays
taken thereon, and referred to the next Legislature;
which proposed amendment or amendments shall be
published for three months previous to the next
election of representatives; and if in the next
Legislature such proposed amendment or amendments
shall be agreed to by two-thirds of all the members
of the legislative assembly, and be approved by the
King, such amendment or amendments shall become part
of the constitution of this country.
|Article 80. The cabinet shall have power to make and publish all necessary rules and regulations for the holding of any election or elections under this constitution, prior to the passage by the Legislature of appropriate laws for such purpose, and to provide for administering to officials, subjects, and residents the oath to support this constitution. The first election hereunder shall be held within ninety days after the promulgation of this constitution, and the Legislature then elected may be convened at Honolulu, upon the call of the cabinet council, in extraordinary session at such time as the cabinet council may deem necessary, thirty days’ notice thereof being previously given.|
|Article 81. This constitution shall be in force from the 7th day of July, A. D. 1887; but that there may be no failure of justice or convenience to the Kingdom from any change, all officers of this Kingdom, at the time this constitution shall take effect, shall have, hold, and exercise all the power to them granted. Such officers shall take an oath to support this constitution within sixty days after the promulgation thereof.|
|Article 82. Any
amendment or amendments to this constitution may be
proposed in the Legislature, and if the same shall
be agreed to by a majority of the members thereof,
such proposed amendment or amendments shall be
entered on its journal, with the yeas and nays taken
thereon, and referred to next Legislature; which
proposed amendment or amendments shall be published
for three months previous to the next election of
representatives and nobles; and if in the next
Legislature such proposed amendment [Page 817]or amendments shall
be agreed to by two-thirds, of all the members of
the Legislature, such amendment or amendments shall
become part of the constitution of this
|By the King:
W. L. Green,
Minister of Finance.
I, Kalakaua, King of the Hawaiian Islands, in the presence of Almighty God, do solemnly swear to maintain this constitution whole and inviolate, and to govern in conformity therewith.
|Subscribed and sworn to before me this sixth day
of July, A. D. 1887.
A. F. Judd,
Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, and Chancellor of the Kingdom.