Minor punctuation errors have been corrected without notice. Several words were spelled in two different ways and not corrected; they are listed at the end of this book. A few obvious typographical errors have been corrected, and they are also listed at the end.
MAJESTY KAMEHAMEHA IV.
WITH HIS MAJESTY'S
REPLIES TO THE REPRESENTATIVES OF FOREIGN NATIONS AND TO PUBLIC BODIES; ALSO WITH SUNDRY PROCLAMATIONS AND OTHER DOCUMENTS RELATING TO HIS ADVENT TO THE THRONE, ETC., WITH THE LAST PROCLAMATION AND AN OBITUARY OF HIS LATE MAJESTY
KING KAMEHAMEHA III.
PRINTED BY ORDER OF THE MINISTER OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS.
HONOLULU: PRINTED AT THE GOVERNMENT PRESS. 1861.
SPEECHES OF HIS MAJESTY KAMEHAMEHA IV., AND OTHER DOCUMENTS.
DECEMBER 8, 1854.
The last Public Proclamation made by His late Majesty King Kamehameha III.
Whereas, It has come to my knowledge from the highest official sources, that my Government has been recently threatened with overthrow by lawless violence; and whereas the representatives at my Court, of the United States, Great Britain and France, being cognizant of these threats, have offered me the prompt assistance of the Naval forces of their respective countries, I hereby publicly proclaim my acceptance of the aid thus proffered in support of my Sovereignty. My independence is more firmly established than ever before.
KEONI ANA. PALACE, 8th December, 1854. By the King and Kuhina Nui.
R. C. WYLLIE.
DECEMBER 15TH, 1854.
Public Proclamation of the Succession To the Throne of His Majesty Kamehameha IV.
Whereas, It has pleased Almighty God to remove from this world our beloved Sovereign, His late Majesty, Kamehameha III.; and whereas, by the will of His late Majesty, and by the appointment and Proclamation of His Majesty and of the House of Nobles, His Royal Highness, Prince Liholiho, was declared to be His Majesty's Successor. Therefore, Public Proclamation is hereby made, that Prince Alexander Liholiho is KING of the Hawaiian Islands, under the style of KAMEHAMEHA IV. God preserve the King.
KEONI ANA, Kuhina Nui.
DECEMBER 15TH, 1854.
DECEMBER 16TH, 1854.
His Majesty's Address to His Privy Council of State in reply to their Condolences over the Death of His late Majesty Kamehameha III.
CHIEFS:—I have become by the Will of God, your Father, as I have been your Child. You must help me, for I stand in need of help.
To you Ministers, and other high officers of State of Our late King, I return my sincere thanks for the expressions of condolence with which you have this morning comforted me. I request of you to continue your labors, in the several positions you have hitherto held, until when my grief shall have allowed me time for reflection, I make such new arrangements as shall seem proper.
I thank the Members of this Council, in general for their condolence, who will, also, I hope, assist me with their advice, as though they had been appointed by myself.
JANUARY 11, 1855.
His Majesty's Address on the occasion of taking the Oath prescribed by the Constitution. Extr. from Polynesian, Jan. 13, 1855.
I solemnly swear, in the presence of Almighty God, to maintain the Constitution of the Kingdom whole and inviolate, and to govern in conformity with that and the laws.
Immediately afterwards, His Highness the Kuhina Nui repeated the words "God preserve the King," which were re-echoed everywhere throughout the Church with loud cheers; His Majesty's Royal Standard and the National Ensign were hoisted and a royal salute fired from the fort.
Afterwards it pleased the King to make a solemn and eloquent address, in native, to His subjects, which was received by them with great enthusiasm, a translation of which is as follows:
Give ear Hawaii o Keawe! Maui o Kama! Oahu o Kuihewa! Kauai o Mano!
In the providence of God, and by the will of his late Majesty Kamehameha III., this day read in your hearing, I have been called to the high and responsible position of the Chief Ruler of this nation. I am deeply sensible of the importance and sacredness of the great trust committed to my hands, and in the discharge of this trust, I shall abide by the Constitution and laws which I have just sworn to maintain and support. It is not my wish to entertain you on the present occasion with pleasant promises for the future; but I trust that the close of my career will show that I have not been raised to the head of this nation to oppress and curse it, but on the contrary to cheer and bless it, and that when I come to my end, I may, like the beloved Chief whose funeral we yesterday celebrated, pass from earth amid the bitter lamentation of my people.
The good, the generous, the kind hearted Kamehameha is now no more. Our great Chief has fallen! But though dead he still lives. He lives in the hearts of his people! He lives in the liberal, the just, and the beneficent measures which it was always his pleasure to adopt. His monuments rise to greet us on every side. They may be seen in the church, in the school house, and the hall of justice; in the security of our persons and property; in the peace, the law, the order and general prosperity that prevail throughout the islands. He was the friend of the Makaainana, the father of his people, and so long as a Hawaiian lives his memory will be cherished!
By the death of Kamehameha III., the chain that carried us back to the ancient days of Kamehameha I. has been broken. He was the last child of that great Chieftain, but how unlike the father from whom he sprung. Kamehameha I. was born for the age in which he lived, the age of war and of conquest. Nobly did he fulfill the destiny for which he was created, that of reducing the islands from a state of anarchy and constant warfare to one of peace and unity under the rule of one king. With the accession of Kamehameha II. to the throne the tabus were broken, the wild orgies of heathenism abolished, the idols thrown drown, and in their place was set up the worship of the only living and true God. His was the era of the introduction of Christianity and all its peaceful influences. He was born to commence the great moral revolution which began with his reign, and he performed his cycle. The age of Kamehameha III. was that of progress and of liberty—of schools and of civilization. He gave us a Constitution and fixed laws; he secured the people in the title to their lands, and removed the last chain of oppression. He gave them a voice in his councils and in the making of the laws by which they are governed. He was a great national benefactor, and has left the impress of his mild and amiable disposition on the age for which he was born.
To-day we begin a new era. Let it be one of increased civilization—one of decided progress, industry, temperance, morality, and all those virtues which mark a nation's advance. This is beyond doubt a critical period in the history of our country, but I see no reason to despair. We have seen the tomb close over our Sovereign, but it does not bury our hopes. If we are united as one individual in seeking the peace, the prosperity and independence of our country, we shall not be overthrown. The importance of this unity is what I most wish to impress upon your minds. Let us be one and we shall not fall!
On my part I shall endeavor to give you a mild, and liberal government, but at the same time one sufficiently vigorous to maintain the laws, secure you in all your rights of persons and property, and not too feeble to withstand the assaults of faction. On your part I shall expect you to contribute your best endeavors to aid me in maintaining the Constitution, supporting the laws, and upholding our Independence.
It further pleased His Majesty, in accordance with a suggestion made to him, to make the following impromptu remarks, in English, to foreigners owing allegiance to him, and others residing in his dominions:
A few remarks addressed on this occasion, to you, the foreign portion of the assembly present, may not be inappropriate.
You have all been witnesses this day to the solemn oath I have taken in the presence of Almighty God and this assembly, to preserve inviolate the Constitution. This is no idle ceremony. The Constitution which I have sworn to maintain has its foundation laid in the deep and immutable principles of Liberty, Justice and Equality, and by these, and none other, I hope to be guided in the administration of my Government. As the ruler of this people, I shall endeavor, with the blessing of God, to seek the welfare of my subjects, and at the same time to consult their wishes. In these endeavors I shall expect the hearty co-operation of all classes—foreigners as well as natives.
His Majesty Kamehameha III., now no more, was preeminently the friend of the foreigner; and I am happy in knowing he enjoyed your confidence and affection. He opened his heart and hand with a royal liberality, and gave till he had little to bestow and you but little to ask. In this respect I cannot hope to equal him, but though I may fall far behind I shall follow in his footsteps.
To be kind and generous to the foreigner, to trust and confide in him, is no new thing in the history of our race. It is an inheritance transmitted to us by our forefathers. The founder of our dynasty was ever glad to receive assistance and advice from foreigners. His successor, not deviating from the policy of his father, listened not only to the voice of a missionary, and turned with his people to the light of Christianity, but against the wishes of the nation left his native land to seek for advice and permanent protection at a foreign Court. Although he never returned alive, his visit shows plainly what were his feelings towards the people of foreign countries. I cannot fail to heed the example of my ancestors. I therefore say to the foreigner that he is welcome. He is welcome to our shores—welcome so long as he comes with the laudable motive of promoting his own interests and at the same time respecting those of his neighbor. But if he comes here with no more exalted motive than that of building up his own interests at the expense of the native—to seek our confidence only to betray it—with no higher ambition than that of overthrowing our Government, and introducing anarchy, confusion and bloodshed—then is he most unwelcome!
The duties we owe to each other are reciprocal. For my part I shall use my best endeavors, in humble reliance on the Great Ruler of all, to give you a just, liberal and satisfactory Government. At the same time I shall expect you in return to assist me in sustaining the Peace, the Law, the Order and the Independence of my Kingdom.
The preceding is the address, as it was taken down at the time, by a practised stenographer.
His Majesty afterwards, from the portico of the church, addressed, in native, a crowd of several thousand, who had not been able to find room in the church, and who had congregated in front thereof, outside the military. The crowd listened in breathless silence, and when the King concluded, cheered His Majesty most rapturously.
The whole solemn proceedings were conducted with admirable order, and His Majesty throughout appeared calm, collected and dignified.
JANUARY 6TH, 1855.
Extract from the Polynesian of January 6, 1855.
[UNDER SPECIAL AUTHORITY.]
His late Majesty, Kauikeouli Kaleiopapa Kuakamanolani, Mahinalani, Kalaninuiwaiakua, Keaweawealaokalani, whose royal style was Kamehameha III., was born on the 17th March, 1813, in Keauhou, District of Kona, Hawaii. His father was the renowned king and conqueror, Kamehameha I. His mother was Keopuolani, daughter of Kiwaloa, son of Kalaiopuu, of Kau, Hawaii. On the day before her death, while conversing with the celebrated chief Kalaimoku, respecting her children, she said, "I wish that my two children Kauikeouli, and Nahienaena (her daughter), should know God and serve him, and be instructed in Christianity. I wish you to take care of these my two children,—see that they walk in the right way, counsel them, let them not associate with bad companions." But after her death, the chief who had the immediate charge of the young Prince's person was Kaikeoewa. When he retired to Lanai, Kaahumanu placed the Prince under the immediate charge of Boki. The earliest education which the infant Prince received, was at Kailua, from the Rev. A. Thurston, and Thomas Hopu, a native who had been educated in the United States. In Honolulu the Prince became the pupil of the Rev. Hiram Bingham.
The young Prince had the misfortune to lose his father Kamehameha, on the 8th of May, 1819, and his mother Keopuolani, on the 16th of September, 1823. Towards the end of that year King Kamehameha II. (Liholiho), embarked for England, where he died in 1824. The royal remains were conveyed back to the islands in the British frigate "Blonde," commanded by Lord Byron, in 1825. Soon afterwards, say in May, 1825, the reign of Kamehameha III. commenced, but under the political guidance of a supreme ruler, or "Kuhina Nui," till March, 1833, when he declared to the chiefs his wish to take into his own hands the lands for which his father had toiled, the powers of life and death, and the undivided sovereignty,—and confirmed Kinau (Kaahumanu II.) as his "Kuhina Nui." He then took into his own hands the reins of sovereign power, in the twentieth year of his age. How he has exercised that power, during the twenty-one years that intervened between its assumption and the 15th December last, when Death released him of all royal and other earthly cares, it will be the duty of his future biographer to show. His memory is, and must ever be, dear to his subjects, for the free constitutions which he voluntarily granted to them in 1840 and in 1852; for his support of religion and patronage of education; for his conferring upon them, and upon foreigners, the right to hold lands in fee simple, and for his willing abandonment of all the arbitrary powers and right of universal seignorial land-lordship, which he had inherited. There is scarcely in history, ancient or modern, any king to whom so many public reforms and benefits can be ascribed, as the achievements of only twenty-one years of his reign. Yet what king has had to contend with so many difficulties, arising from ignorance, prejudice, scanty revenue, inexperience and ineptitude, as his late Majesty King Kamehameha III.? It was only in 1844 that His Majesty had the assistance of a responsible legal counsellor, and of a Secretary of State; only in 1845 that a proper separation of the departments of government was attempted, and a cabinet formed. The political principles then established by His Majesty were the following, viz:
"That monarchy in the Sandwich Islands is indispensable to the preservation of the King, the chiefs and the natives. That it is the duty of the Ministers, in all their measures, to have a single eye to the preservation of the King, the chiefs and the natives.
"That the existence of the King, chiefs and the natives, can only be preserved by having a government efficient for the administration of enlightened justice, both to natives and the subjects of foreign powers residing in the islands, and that chiefly through missionary efforts the natives have made such progress in education and knowledge, as to justify the belief that by further training, they may be rendered capable of conducting efficiently the affairs of government; but that they are not at present so far advanced.
"That the best means of bringing them to that desired state, are the careful study of proper books, and the practical knowledge of business, to be acquired by ascending through the different gradations of office, under foreign ministers.
"That such foreign ministers hold their commissions only by the grace of the King, and agree to surrender them at the will of His Majesty in favor of native subjects, whenever they become properly qualified.
"That the King being recognized as Sovereign by Great Britain, France, the United States and Belgium, has to maintain his position and rank as such, and that all his ministers and officers are to assist him in doing so, by deporting themselves towards him with that respect and consideration to which all sovereigns are entitled; and to discharge their duties so as to do honor to his appointment and credit to themselves.
"That it is the duty of the ministry to discourage all republican tendencies and specious attempts to degrade the King to the rank of a mere superior chief, as calculated to undermine his influence and authority, and place the islands in subjection to white men.
"That the subjection of the islands to white men, would lead to the extinction of the native race.
"That the ministers ought to promote the numerical increase of the natives, and their happiness, and wealth, by encouraging religion, education, the arts and sciences.
"That the co-operation of Christian missionaries should be admitted towards these objects, but that they shall not interfere in the purely political concerns of the King's Government.
"That equal rights and privileges should be allowed to all foreign nations.
"That the revenue necessary to support the King's Government, religion, schools, and to reward public services, should be raised without such oppressive taxes as would oppress the natives, and shackle their industry.
"That the faith of all treaties, conventions, contracts, engagements, and even promises, should be religiously observed.
"That a constitution and code of laws be provided, adapted to the genius of the nation, to the climate and soil, and to the wealth, the manners, and the customs, and the numbers of the people."
These principles, so far as they could be applied to the good of his people, were faithfully adhered to by the late King, as will be seen by his recommendations to the Legislature, embodied in his speeches for the last nine years, which have been published together. The annual reports of his Ministers, and of his Chancellor and Chief Justice, best show whether those principles have been mere profession, or have had an operative effect, in promoting that progress which, for the last decade of his late Majesty's reign, has unquestionably surpassed that of any other nation during the same period of time. All the reforms effected have been achieved without the creation of a national debt, and without one violent convulsion. The inference is irresistible, that monarchs may spring from the Hawaiian race, capable of well performing all the duties of constitutional sovereignty, and of fulfilling all the requirements of the government of an enlightened, independent nation, both in its internal and foreign relations.
Revolutionary violence, therefore, has no excuse except in the selfish rapacity which prompts it. It cannot plead the example of any country bordering on the Pacific, where life and property are more secure than they have been here, under the reign of the late King; where foreigners enjoy greater privileges, and where, like this Kingdom, foreign commerce (excepting spirituous liquors) pays a contribution to the State of only 5 per cent. ad valorem.
In private life, the late King was mild, kind, affable, generous and forgiving. He was never more happy than when free from the cares and trappings of state. He could enjoy himself sociably with his friends, who were much attached to him. Having associated much, while a boy, with foreigners, he continued to the last to be fond of their company. Without his personal influence, the law to allow them to hold lands in fee simple could never have been enacted; neither could conflicting claims to land have been settled and registered by that most useful institution, the Board of Land Commissioners. It is hardly possible to conceive any King more generally beloved than was his late Majesty; more universally obeyed, or more completely sovereign in the essential respect of independent sovereignty, that of governing his subjects free from any influence or control coming from beyond the limits of his own jurisdiction.
The sister of the late King, the Princess Nahienaena, died on the 30th December, 1836.
On the 4th of February, 1837, the late King was married to Kalama, daughter of Naihekukui, who has survived his Majesty, and is now the Queen Dowager. The King had by her two children, Keaweaweula and Keaweaweula 2d, who died in their infancy.
Being childless, the late King adopted as his son and heir ALEXANDER LIHOLIHO, who was born on the 9th of February, 1834, and who now happily reigns as KING KAMEHAMEHA IV.
JANUARY 16, 1855.
Replies made by His Majesty to the Congratulations of the Representatives and Consuls of Foreign Nations and the Commanders of Foreign Ships of War in port.
It pleased His Majesty to make the following replies:
To the Diplomatic Corps:
GENTLEMEN:—You cannot desire your remarks to be more gratifying than I feel them to be. In reply, I thank you, and hope that the amicable feelings which have hitherto existed between the several countries you represent and my own, may never be impaired. For my part I shall lose no opportunity to improve and strengthen them. Gentlemen, I thank you.
To the Consular Corps:
GENTLEMEN:—Your remarks are also very gratifying to me. The geographical position of my islands is indeed such as to point out plainly enough our policy—to make our ports what Providence destined them to be; places of safety, refuge and refreshment for the ships and merchants of all countries. Nothing more bespeaks the prosperity of a people than the extent of its intercourse with foreign countries. My utmost exertions shall be given to foster that intercourse between the countries, whose commercial interests here are placed in your hands, and my islands. This I shall do the more heartily from a pleasant remembrance of the harmony of our relations heretofore.
To the officers of men-of-war:
GENTLEMEN:—The feelings expressed by you on this occasion afford me sincere pleasure. The ports of my islands will always be open to receive the vessels and ships of war of the three nations which you represent—the three greatest maritime powers of the earth—the three greatest supporters of the independence of my kingdom.
JANUARY 16TH, 1855.
Address made by His Majesty to His Ministers and High Officers of State on receiving their Portfolios.
GENTLEMEN:—On calling you to the high posts you respectively fill, I propose to make a few remarks, with the request that you will bear them constantly in mind. First, let me impress upon you the importance of unity of purpose and action, for I consider it impossible for the business of government to be effectively carried out, unless there exist a great unanimity of feeling among its officers. I have chosen you, because, I thought that being actuated by one common policy, your deliberations would be free from suspicious reserve, and your actions all tend to one end. In a Cabinet divided into factions, differing on fundamental points of policy, I could place no confidence; and should I find mine thus divided, I should feel it my duty to reorganize it. I am determined that my Government, if any power vested in me can attain that object, shall be respected for its honesty and efficiency. Unsupported by these two pillars, no kingdom is safe. I desire every part of the machinery of government to move in unison; to subserve the great purposes for which it was intended; and to be conducted with the strictest economy. Though young, with the help of God, I shall endeavor to be firm and faithful in the execution of the high trust devolved upon me, and never let my feelings, as a man, overcome my duties as a King. From all my counsellors I desire frank and faithful advice, and those who advise me honestly, have nothing to fear; while those who may abuse my confidence and advise me more from personal interests than regard for the public good, have nothing to hope.
One word in regard to the nominations for office which according to law it becomes your duty to make, and I have done. Let your subordinates be recommended by at least these qualifications—honesty, temperance, industry and adaptation to the places they are to fill; and let them be men in whom you see good grounds for placing confidence.
May success crown your efforts and after years approve my judgment in calling you to office.
APRIL 7, 1855.
His Majesty's Speech in English and Hawaiian at the Opening of the Legislature, April 7, 1855.
NOBLES AND REPRESENTATIVES:—It has pleased the Almighty to gather to his forefathers my beloved Predecessor. This bereavement has been to me the source of the deepest sorrow; but my grief has been assuaged by the sympathy of this whole nation, in whom I see innumerable and ever-gathering proofs of the love and gratitude they bore their departed Chief.
You meet this day in conformity with the Constitution he gave you. Had his suggestions, on the many occasions he addressed you from the place I now occupy, been matured by your deliberations, and carried into effect, there would, perhaps, be little for me to recommend, or for you to perform. The measures he initiated reflect lustre upon his name, and if by any endeavor of mine those measures shall be perfected, I shall consider it indeed an honor.
In the exercise of my prerogative, I have availed myself of an Act passed during your last session, and since approved by me, by virtue of which I have separated the offices of Kuhina Nui and Minister of the Interior. To the former post I have called her Royal Highness, Princess Victoria Kamamalu. The Ministry of the Interior remains in the same hands as heretofore, as do the other portfolios of my Government; for, young and newly come to this responsible position, I have gladly availed myself of the wisdom and experience of the counsellors of our deceased King.
I have instructed the high officers of my government to lay before you reports of their several departments.
For a history of the Judiciary Department during the last year, and for certain changes proposed in our laws, I would refer you to the report of my Chancellor. His recommendations, especially those suggesting remedies for the great evils which are so speedily destroying our race, meet my most hearty approval, and are worthy of your serious consideration.
I trust you will be able to devise such wise and salutary measures as shall effectually check licentiousness and intemperance.
The doors of Justice are open to all, and so far as I am informed, its administration in the higher courts has been prompt, efficient and satisfactory. Of the inferior magistrates, there has been some complaint, no doubt in many instances with reason; but the character of district justices has greatly improved within the past few years, and it is to be hoped it will continue to improve. Weak as we are, and imperfect as our Government may be, it will not be doubted, I think, that there is no country in which there is more entire security for life, liberty, person and property.
His Royal Highness, Prince Kamehameha, on whom has devolved the chief military command, will exhibit to you in his report, which is embodied in that of the Secretary at War, the plans he has in contemplation to render efficient the important service intrusted to his care. I have to request that you will give this subject the grave attention it deserves. His late Majesty urged the matter upon you frequently, but the appropriations have hitherto been insufficient for any permanent or efficient organization of that important department. I indulge a strong hope that you will remedy this deficiency, and place the Department of War upon a firm and better footing.
Deeply imbued with a sense of the responsibility that rests upon my Government, not only to foster, but to lead the way in all that tends to the general good, I would invite your earnest attention to the recommendations that will be laid before you by my Minister of the Interior, and particularly to that portion of his report relating to the proposed improvements in the harbor of Honolulu. The facilities that would be afforded in the loading and unloading of vessels, native as well as foreign; the extra inducements that these new accommodations would hold out to those parties who contemplate making this port a place where ocean steamers may seek refreshments, and take in coal and water; the general impetus that would be given to trade by providing, at the water's edge, a site for the erection of warehouses; and the hundred other conveniences proper to a maritime city;—all these considerations prove to my mind the propriety of proceeding energetically with a work so national in its character that no part of the islands can fail to share in many of its advantages. To your wisdom it belongs to consider in what way the funds necessary to effect this great improvement may be best procured.
It is gratifying to me, on commencing my reign, to be able to inform you, that my relations with all the great Powers, between whom and myself exist treaties of amity, are of the most satisfactory nature. I have received from all of them, assurances that leave no room to doubt that my rights and sovereignty will be respected. My policy, as regards all foreign nations, being that of peace, impartiality and neutrality, in the spirit of the Proclamation by the late King, of the 16th May last, and of the Resolutions of the Privy Council of the 15th June and 17th July, I have given to the President of the United States, at his request, my solemn adhesion to the rule, and to the principles establishing the rights of neutrals during war, contained in the Convention between his Majesty the Emperor of all the Russias, and the United States, concluded in Washington on the 22d July last.
I have exchanged my ratification for that, by my great and good friend, His Majesty Oscar, King of Sweden and Norway, of the treaty concluded at my Court on the 1st day of July, 1852.
I have ordered my Minister of Foreign Relations to inform you of all treaties with foreign nations negotiated under the late reign, of the progressive steps by which the sovereignty and independence of this Kingdom have become so generally acknowledged, and of the transactions generally of the Department under his charge.
I have committed an important mission to the Honorable William L. Lee, Chancellor of the Kingdom and Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, and have accredited him as my Envoy Extraordinary and Minister Plenipotentiary, from which mission I anticipate important results for the benefit of you all, which will be made known to you hereafter. In the meanwhile, I recommend you to vote such a sum as, in your wisdom, you may deem adequate for the expenses of that mission.
My Minister of Finance will submit, for your considerations, certain important measures relating to the National finances; and you cannot fail to be impressed with the necessity of devising some means of enlarging them. Without more extended means we must remain in the position of having the will, without the power, to stimulate agriculture and commerce, and to provide generally for the physical, mental and moral improvement of the nation. As a preparatory step towards increasing the sources of revenue, we must increase the revenue to be drawn from such sources as already exist. But, restricted as we are, by treaty, from exercising a right common to all free communities, we are unable to impose discriminating duties on foreign imports, which, whilst supplying the Treasury with additional means, would enhance the price of articles of luxury only. To regain the right of which we have, for the present, divested ourselves, it may be necessary that you reconsider the act by which the duty on spirituous liquors is now regulated. The Minister of Finance laid this subject before you last year in a clear and able manner, and his views have been confirmed by the experience of another year. Whether it would be wise to assist the revenue by a tax on property, is for you to determine.
To foster education and widen every channel that leads to knowledge, is one of our most imperative duties. It will be for you to determine what obstacles, if any, exist, to the general enlightenment of my people. On this subject there will be submitted for your consideration, certain proposed changes in the Department of Public Instruction. It is of the highest importance, in my opinion, that education in the English language should become more general, for it is my firm conviction that unless my subjects become educated in this tongue, their hope of intellectual progress, and of meeting the foreigners on terms of equality, is a vain one.
It is a melancholy fact that agriculture, as now practiced, is not a business of so prosperous and lucrative a nature as to induce men of means to engage in it; and capital is absolutely necessary to the successful production of our great staples, sugar, coffee and tobacco. I beg you, therefore, to consider whether there exist any restrictions, the removal of which would give new life to this important source of national prosperity, and tend to create a juster balance between our imports and exports. I need hardly mention the obligation that weighs upon you, to open wide our ports to commerce. Without commerce our agricultural produce might moulder in our warehouses; roads, and interisland communication almost cease to exist; the making of wharves become a work of supererogation, and the opening and closing of stores an idle ceremony. As the legislators of a young commercial nation, we should be liberal in our measures, and far-sighted in our views.
A subject of deeper importance, in my opinion, than any I have hitherto mentioned, is that of the decrease of our population. It is a subject, in comparison with which all others sink into insignificance; for, our first and great duty is that of self-preservation. Our acts are in vain unless we can stay the wasting hand that is destroying our people. I feel a heavy, and special responsibility resting upon me in this matter; but it is one in which you all must share; nor shall we be acquitted by man, or our Maker, of a neglect of duty, if we fail to act speedily and effectually in the cause of those who are every day dying before our eyes.
I think this decrease in our numbers may be stayed; and happy should I be if, during the first year of my reign, such laws should be passed as to effect this result. I would commend to your special consideration the subject of establishing public Hospitals; and it might, at first, perhaps, be wise to confine these hospitals to diseases of one class; and that the most fatal with which our population is afflicted.
Intimately connected with this subject is that of preventing the introduction of fatal diseases and epidemics from abroad. Visited as we are by vessels from all parts of the world, this is no easy matter; but I trust your wisdom will devise some simple and practical remedy.
It affords me unfeigned pleasure to be able to state that, according to the returns from most of the districts, the births during the past year have exceeded the deaths.
It is to be regretted that the Chinese coolie emigrants, to whom has been given a trial of sufficient length for testing their fitness to supply our want of labor and population, have not realized the hopes of those who incurred the expense of their introduction. They are not so kind and tractable as it was anticipated they would be; and they seem to have no affinities, attractions or tendencies to blend with this, or any other race. In view of this failure it becomes a question of some moment whether a class of persons more nearly assimilated with the Hawaiian race, could not be induced to settle on our shores. It does not seem improbable that a portion of the inhabitants of other Polynesian groups might be disposed to come here, were suitable efforts made to lead them to such a step. In a few days they would speak our language with ease; they would be acclimated almost before they left the ships that conveyed them hither; and they might bring with them their wives, whose fecundity is said to be much greater than that of Hawaiian females. Such immigrants, besides supplying the present demand for labor, would pave the way for a future population of native born Hawaiians, between whom, and those of aboriginal parents, no distinguishable difference would exist.
May the issue of your deliberations be crowned with those successful results which the will of the Almighty only can bestow.
JUNE 16, 1855.
His Majesty's Speech and Proclamation on the occasion of Dissolving the Legislature.
NOBLES AND REPRESENTATIVES:—The Legislative Session of 1855 is now about to close.
For some of your acts I thank you in common with the meanest of my subjects, for they embrace the interests of all.
Newly admitted elements of action have operated upon you, and given to certain of your measures a vitality that authorizes me to hope much for the future.
For the relief you have given to the estate of my Predecessor, for the feeling of respect and love evinced by you in assuming with alacrity, the expenses of his obsequies; and for the loyalty you have shown towards me, and my family, I thank you.
Mixed with many circumstances that will always make the session of 1855 pleasant to reflect upon, there is one that must overshadow it forever in the minds of us all. The death of His Excellency, A. Paki, has stamped this year, and, indeed, removed a pillar of the State. From your own feelings on the loss of that High Chief and staunch Hawaiian, you may judge of mine. May the Almighty have us in his keeping, and bless, and perpetuate the Hawaiian Nation.
Nobles and Representatives, I regret that you have not been able to agree upon the details of the Appropriation Bill.
Therefore, in the exercise of my constitutional prerogative in such a case, I feel it my duty to dissolve you, and you are hereby dissolved.
TO ALL OUR LOYAL SUBJECTS, Greeting:
We hereby Proclaim that We have this day dissolved the Legislature of Our Kingdom, by virtue of the power vested in Us by the Constitution. The exigency contemplated by that sacred instrument has arisen, by the disagreement of the two Houses on the Bill of Supplies, which are necessary to carry on Our Government; and furthermore, the House of Representatives framed an Appropriation Bill exceeding Our Revenues, as estimated by Our Minister of Finance, to the extent of about $200,000, which Bill We could not sanction.
There seemed no prospect of agreement, inasmuch as the House of Nobles had made repeated efforts at conciliation with the House of Representatives, without success, and finally, the House of Representatives refused to confer with the House of Nobles respecting the said Appropriation Bill in its last stages, and We deemed it Our duty to exercise Our constitutional prerogative of dissolving the Legislature, and therefore there are no Representatives of the people in the Kingdom.
Therefore, We further proclaim Our Will and Pleasure, that Our Loyal subjects, in all Our Islands, proceed immediately to elect new Representatives, according to law, on the 10th day of July next. And We convoke the Representatives who may be so elected, to meet in Parliament in Our City of Honolulu, on Monday, the 30th day of July, of this year, for the special and only purpose of voting the Supplies necessary to the administration of Our Government, without oppressing Our faithful Subjects with unreasonable taxes.
Done in Our Palace of Honolulu, this sixteenth day of June, 1855, and the first year of Our reign. KAMEHAMEHA. VICTORIA K. KAMAMALU.
JULY 30, 1855.
His Majesty's Speech at the Opening of the Extraordinary Session of the Legislature.
NOBLES AND REPRESENTATIVES:—By virtue of the power which the Constitution declares to be vested in me, I have convoked you to this Extraordinary Session of the Legislature. Neither the late dissolution, nor, of course, this Session, would have occurred under any but extraordinary circumstances. The only public business of emergency left unfinished at the close of the late Session, was the passage of the Appropriation Bill—the most important measure of every Session. It is solely to pass the Bill I mention that you are now brought together. I trust that whilst your memories are so freshly charged with the circumstances that prevented unanimity between your two Houses in regard to the Bill of Supplies, upon which you were deliberating when lately I dissolved you, there will be a desire on the part of all to restrict the amount appropriated for the current year within the probable limits of the year's receipts. It is useless to make appropriations for appearance sake, knowing that they will not, because they cannot, be acted on. My desire therefore is, that you will reject at once, in your deliberations, every item that is not of immediate necessity, since the means at your disposal will barely suffice for those outlays that are indispensable. By acting on this suggestion you will save time and render less likely the recurrence of differences on questions not of public interest.
Nobles and Representatives, I hope the Session now opened will be a very short one, and that you will all cordially unite in appropriating our small means to the best advantage for the general good.
AUGUST 13, 1855.
Messages from His Majesty to the House of Nobles and House of Representatives, Proroguing the Extraordinary Session.
NOBLES:—The Extraordinary Session to which I convoked you having terminated with the completion of the special business which I recommended to my Parliament, I now thank you for concurring with the Honorable Representatives of My People, in voting the supplies indispensable to the administration of My Government.
I now free you from further attendance, and prorogue you till the Session of next year.
HONORABLE REPRESENTATIVES OF MY PEOPLE:—Having concluded the special business for which I convoked you to an Extraordinary Session, it only remains for me to thank you for the regard you have shown to the safety and welfare of my Kingdom in voting the supplies necessary to carry on the business of My Government, and to free you from further attendance in Parliament.
I therefore prorogue you.
FEBRUARY 15, 1855.
His Majesty's Letter to Her Majesty the Queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland.[A]
GREAT AND GOOD FRIEND:—Believing that Your Majesty takes a sincere interest in every thing which concerns the Hawaiian nation, I doubt not but that You will partake in my sorrow for the loss of my Predecessor, Kamehameha III., who died on the 15th of December last.
In accordance with the will of the late King, and the Constitution of my Realm, I have succeeded to the throne of my forefathers. My anxious endeavor will be to rule for the good of my subjects, and of all foreigners residing within my jurisdiction; and, in so doing, I shall rely, under God, upon the sympathy and good will of Your Majesty, and of the British nation.
Your Good Friend, (Signed,) KAMEHAMEHA. By the King. (Signed,) R. C. WYLLIE.
[Footnote A: The same letter, mutatis mutandis, was sent to their Majesties the Emperor of the French, the Emperor of Russia, Kings of Denmark, Prussia, Sweden and Norway, Presidents of the United States, of Hamburg, Bremen, Chile, and Peru.]
SEPTEMBER 18, 1855.
Reply by His Majesty to the Address of Hon. D. L. Gregg, Commissioner of the United States, on Presentation of the Letter of the President of the United States, condoling with His Majesty on the Death of His Predecessor, and congratulating Him on His Accession to the Throne.
I trust it is almost unnecessary for me to assure you, Mr. Gregg, that the letter you have just delivered to me from the President of the Great American Republic could not have reached me through a more agreeable channel than the hands of the United States' Commissioner.
I will not do my own feelings the injustice of attempting to disguise the fact that, at the present moment this communication from the Head of your Government, according to my appreciation of it, loses entirely its formal character, and appears to express only the sentiments of a Friend, who has proved himself worthy of that high name. The Treaty recently negotiated between my Envoy at Washington and Mr. Marcy, on the part of the Government of the United States, is indeed but one link in the chain that binds the two countries in relations of the most happy kind. But it is a convention of the greatest importance not only to those who are numbered among my subjects, but to every American citizen who has any interests upon these islands. I do not doubt but that its effect will be to call hither more of your enterprising countrymen, and direct towards the now partially developed resources of this archipelago, the attention of your judicious, but ever ready capitalists. Under this treaty we may expect to see American citizens raising the produce which American ships will carry to an American market. But their prosperity will be ours. Indeed, the mutual interests of the two countries are so interwoven in this regard, that it would be a difficult task to define a line between them.
Whatever may be the future in store for these islands, it will be impossible for any Hawaiian while the nation exists to forget or undervalue the fostering care which your Great Country, as a Parent, has extended towards them; and among the names of individual Americans that will stand out prominently, I foresee a high place assigned to those of Mr. President Pierce, and the gentleman I have the pleasure to address.
DECEMBER 10, 1855.
PROCLAMATION BY THE KING.
We hereby proclaim Our pleasure that Tuesday, the first of January next, be kept as a day of solemn Thanksgiving to Almighty God for His numberless blessings to Our kingdom and people.
JANUARY 5, 1856.
Notes of an Address by His Majesty, at the Formation of the Hawaiian Agricultural Society, reported to the Polynesian.
In due course of time His Majesty addressed the meeting. The difficulty of taking short-hand notes in English of what is being said in the native dialect, the construction of which is peculiar, a sentence often beginning at the end and ending in the middle, must be our apology for doing so little justice to the eloquent language and sound common-sense ideas expressed by the President.
After an opening sentence or two, the King spoke to the following effect:
Convinced of the importance of this undertaking, I consented to address you to-day. I should not however, have done so, had I not been fearful that a refusal on my part might have induced others of more information and better acquainted with the particular object we have united to foster, to decline in like manner. At the same time I cannot help thinking and hoping that my few remarks will be eclipsed by the weight and breadth of those of other speakers who are to stand before you on the closing day of this month and other specified days, according to a resolution passed at our last meeting.
We also caught the following sentence, which, although it may appear a little disjointed here, was neatly introduced, and bore upon the argument then being used:
One of the greatest prospective advantages that we see in the assiduous pursuit of agriculture, is the reformation it would work amongst the people. It is not in the ranks of modern farmers that you must look for the most ignorant or the most immoral men. We all know that when an individual enters upon an undertaking of the mode to accomplish which he is ignorant, he applies for information where it may be found, having learnt that a man unqualified for his task must fail in it. Having acquired this much experience, and being solicitous for the prosperity and happiness of his children, he will on no account omit sending them to school, so that they may not be trammelled in after years by ignorance as their father was. Thus the rising generation is prepared for its work. The children find themselves on starting in life possessed of the information necessary to success, whereas their father had to struggle on his way in the midst of darkness and misapprehension. Suppose a step similar to the one I have described were made by the young people from one end of the islands to the other. Would not ignorance give way to intelligence? Would not darkness become light? Would not inexpertness succumb to proficiency? The general result could only be a largely increased sum of individual and national prosperity.
The King, who has of late been residing a few miles from Honolulu superintending some agricultural operations of his own, we believe upon the very spot which his great predecessor, Kamehameha I., cultivated before him, spoke with animation of our natural advantages:
Who ever heard of winter upon our shores? When was it so cold that the laborer could not go to his field. Where amongst us shall we find the numberless drawbacks which in less favored countries the working classes have to contend with? They have no place in our beautiful group, which rests on the swelling bosom of the Pacific like a water-lily. With a tranquil heaven above our heads, and a sun that keeps his jealous eye upon us every day, whilst his rays are so tempered that they never wither prematurely what they have warmed into life, we ought to be agriculturists in heart as well as practice.
The following sentence contains a truth to which thousands can testify:
I wish to allude to a bad custom which prevails amongst us. I mean the foolish hospitality extended everywhere towards the lazy and good-for-nothing equally with those who are worthy of it. A young man, able bodied and fit for work, lies in the house upon which he confers the honor of a visit, whilst his friends go out to labor. When they come back they share with him their scanty meal, and he is not ashamed to eat of it. Is that as it should be? Is it not a thing which we ought to feel as a disgrace—a custom that reflects upon the heads of the old and the hearts of the young? I am well aware that the sharing of food with every stranger and visitor that comes along is dignified with the name of ancient Hawaiian hospitality. I now tell you it is not true hospitality. Can that hospitality be correct in theory or practice which sends old men and sick men to work under a hot sun, whilst lusty young people lie in the house playing at cards.
There is a very wholesome tone in this remark:
At present we are a poor people, for the surplus produced by the few who work is consumed by the many who claim at their hands the rights of your boasted hospitality. Never close your doors on those who are hungry through sickness, misfortune, or the wrongs they have received; but on the other hand never help those who are too lazy to help themselves.
Another nail is most decidedly hit on the head in the following:
I will allude to another bad feature in the native mind; I mean the idea in which too many of you indulge, that a fortune if not made in a day, ought to be acquired in a very short space of time. If a man does not get rich in the first few months of his endeavoring to do so, he suddenly relaxes in his exertions, subsides into his native indolence, and becomes a laughing stock to those whose ideas are in advance of his own. You say commonly, everything a foreigner touches he turns into money. But the fact is that if you worked and persevered as the foreigners do, then you would grow rich like them. There are three essentials to success in cultivating the soil. The first is a place to cultivate—the second, the hands to work with—and the third, perseverance. You have all your patches granted you by law; your hands are not tied either by natural or artificial bonds—but as cultivators you do not succeed, because you have no perseverance.
The concluding sentence was almost word for word as under:
The great sources of poverty amongst Hawaiians are laziness and the want of perseverance. I know that what I now say is a matter of which you and I also have cause to be ashamed. But placed in the position I occupy, and as a Father to my people, I cannot hide the fact.
The King's address was listened to with great earnestness, and every now and then we heard subdued expressions of Oiaio no (True, true,) from different parts of the house. At present we see no cause to doubt that much good will result from the new society, and to those who interest themselves in it we hope to see the honor given which they undoubtedly deserve.
MARCH 3, 1856.
His Majesty's Remarks to the Hon. W. L. Lee, on his being officially presented and resuming his Seat in the Privy Council, after his return from the Embassy to the United States.
I take great pleasure, Judge Lee, in your return to my islands, and I extend to you on behalf of myself and Chiefs a hearty welcome. Your valuable services in the United States have been such as to merit our warmest thanks and approval, and I trust the success of your mission may strengthen the friendly relations existing between the United States and my Kingdom. It is my desire that you should resume the duties of your department as head of the Judiciary, as soon as convenient, but that in so doing you should make your labors secondary to the improvement of your health.
APRIL 5, 1856.
His Majesty's Speech on the Occasion of the Opening of the Session of the Hawaiian Legislature of 1856.
NOBLES AND REPRESENTATIVES:—I have convoked you to meet this day under the provision of our Constitution now in force, which provides for an Annual Session of the Legislative Body; and with humble thankfulness to the Ruler of Nations, I felicitate you upon the prosperity which has attended us, as a people, during the past year.
I am happy to inform you that since your last meeting I have received from the Heads of nearly all the first class Powers of the present century, assurances of friendship, accompanied, in some instances, with promises of assistance should occasion require it. Never did I consider our hope of stability as a nation so well founded as they are at this moment.
One of the most important features in my Foreign Relations during the past year, is that of the Mission upon which my Special Envoy, the Honorable William L. Lee, proceeded to Washington, where he was most cordially received, and whose exertions have been attended with the happiest results. They have opened, in the minds of our agriculturists and those who study the progress of our people as producers, hopes, which only need the confirmation of the Senate of the United States to become permanently realized, and greatly conducive to our prosperity.
Negotiations have, for some time past, been in progress between my Ministers of Foreign Relations and Finance, and the Commissioner of the Emperor of France, for a new Treaty between that Sovereign and myself. For farther particulars regarding my Relations abroad, I refer you to the Report of my Minister of that Department.
My Minister of War will furnish you a Report showing the appropriation, necessary to be made for the support of the Military during the ensuing year.
The administration of Justice, during the past year, especially in the higher Courts of Judicature, has been such as to give general satisfaction.
Respecting the business of the Judiciary Department, I would refer you to the Report of my Chancellor. The measures he proposes are worthy of being seriously deliberated upon, and I earnestly recommend to your early consideration that for the suppression of intoxication. It is painful to notice the increase of this evil in Honolulu, arising principally from the sale of cheap and noxious compounds. In connection with this subject, I would call your attention to the evil arising from the sale of opium to Chinese Coolies, which, unless speedily checked, I fear may spread among our own race.
In the Report of my Minister of the Interior you will not fail to observe a valuable suggestion proposing a fundamental change in the appointment of the officers intrusted with the making and preserving of our public roads. It is to the effect that persons chosen for their ability be appointed by the executive, in lieu of the Superintendents elected at present by the tax payers of each district, a system the experience of several years has proved to be accompanied with many abuses.
I recommend to your notice the several other points contained in that Report, especially that asking for an authorization to grant Title Deeds to persons who have proved their claims before the Land Commission, but received no Patents, in consequence of surveys not having been made of the Kuleanas to which they were entitled, and to Konohikis whose lands are described in the Book of Division, but who have not received their Awards. Also, the continuation of the Inter-island Mail Carrier service, and, above all, an appropriation for the purchase of a proper steamer, to assist intercourse between the Islands of this group, and encourage industry.
You will perceive by the detailed Report of my Minister of Finance that the liabilities of my Treasury have been promptly discharged and the public credit fully sustained, notwithstanding the large expenditure made for important public improvements. The law for the more just and equal collection of Taxes, passed at your last Session, has operated favorably on the national finances, although I am of opinion that some alterations in its provisions would still further improve it.
In addition to the ordinary expenses of the Government, you will see the necessity of appropriations sufficient to complete the public works already commenced, even though it should be necessary to resort to the loan authorized by the law of the last Session.
My Minister of Finance has also called your attention to the important subject of a Usury law, which I commend to your favorable consideration.
He has likewise alluded to a proposed mode of payment for the steamer before mentioned, which may, I trust, preclude all embarrassment to my Treasury.
You cannot, at present, regard the law imposing duties on imports passed at your last Session, as a basis for appropriations, because it is uncertain whether it will go into effect.
The state and progress of Education among my people during the past year, you will learn from the Report of the President of the Board of Education. The change in that Department, by an Act of the last Legislature, has proved, thus far, to be beneficial. It is particularly gratifying to know that instruction in the English language is prosecuted with so much success among my native subjects. I recommend you to make as liberal a provision for the support of this class of schools as the state of my Treasury will admit.
I feel so keenly the necessity of some new stimulus to agriculture, in all its branches, that I very seriously call your attention to that point, and shall be happy if in your wisdom you can devise any measures to promote so important an object. The Native Hawaiian Agricultural Society, lately instituted, needs your fostering care in the form in which you have manifested it towards the sister Association. The decrease of our population, and the means of staying it, occupy many of my thoughts; and a subject so important cannot fail to receive your serious consideration. Intimately connected with the subject last alluded to, is the still unaccomplished wish of all the true friends of the nation to see a Hospital established, and I sincerely hope that those who have foretold difficulties opposed to the success of such an institution, will at last allow the experiment to be made. Fearful, as we all must be, of the introduction of any new diseases to decimate us again, I beg of you to consider by what means, under Providence, such a calamity may be averted.
I sincerely trust that the Ruler of all will guide your deliberations to a result beneficial to the nation.
MAY 24, 1856.
Reply by His Majesty to the Congratulations offered by the House of Representatives upon His approaching Marriage.
It is with much pleasure that I receive the congratulations of the Representatives of my People, upon the contemplated event of my marriage. Your voice is that of the Nation speaking through its Representatives, and it is a great satisfaction to me to have your approval of the important step I am about to take.
You express the hope that the union may be the means of perpetuating our Sovereignty and promoting the welfare of the nation, and I sincerely unite with you in that hope.
In conclusion, I thank you, Representatives, for the kind, prompt and unanimous manner in which you have responded to my Message.
JUNE 11, 1856.
His Majesty's Speech upon Proroguing the Session of the Legislature of 1856.
NOBLES AND REPRESENTATIVES:—At the close of a Session which has been marked by so much unanimity as that about to terminate, and during which so much that displays the wisdom essential to success in legislation has been observable, I cannot but feel a gratification in meeting you.
The appropriations you have made for the expenses of my Government during the next two years, and the zeal you have displayed to render especially efficient the Bureau of Public Works, meet with my sincere approval.
In the matter of one appropriation only, do I entertain any doubts; but if by any possibility the military establishment can be maintained upon such a scale as to ensure a promise of security, no exertions will be wanting on the part of my Government to do so, without overstepping the amount by you provided.
To the members of the House of Representatives I would express my sincere acknowledgments for the readiness with which they have interpreted the public feeling, and provided for my establishment under the new relations which I am about to assume.
I have no expectations that any necessity will arise for calling you together before the stated session of 1858, and I trust that the interim will be full of prosperity to you and the nation, the blessing of God making fruitful those exertions from which I now release you by proroguing the session.
NOVEMBER 3, 1856.
PROCLAMATION BY THE KING.
We, Kamehameha, King of the Hawaiian Islands, hereby issue our Proclamation agreeably to former custom, that:
Whereas, during the year now drawing to a close, we have enjoyed, as a people, numerous and great blessings; peace and tranquility have prevailed throughout our islands; we have been not only free from dangers from abroad, but have continued to enjoy the most friendly assurances of protection in our independence from the most powerful governments in the world; although the times have been hard through the scarcity of money, and our people have suffered from a drought almost unparalleled, neither our agriculture nor commerce has entirely failed; both begin to revive; the crops in most places have been good; perhaps we have never enjoyed a year of more general health; our laws have been sustained; religion and education have been free and prosperous: For all of which numerous and invaluable blessings we owe, as a nation, a formal, general and heartfelt tribute of thanksgiving to the Almighty, on whose favor all prosperity, whether individual or national, depends.
We do, therefore, with the advice and consent of our Privy Council of State, designate and recommend Thursday, the 25th day of December next, as a day of general and public Thanksgiving to God, our Heavenly Father, throughout our islands; and we earnestly invite all good people to a sincere and prayerful observance of the same.
Done at our Palace this 3d day of November, A. D., 1856. KAMEHAMEHA.
DECEMBER 9, 1856.
His Majesty's Address at the Stone Church, before the Meeting of the Native Agricultural Society, from the Polynesian of Dec. 13.
Our reporter caught only some of the more prominent ideas embodied in the King's address, which was delivered in the pure idiom of the elder chiefs, by which device he connected, as it were, modern science with ancient feeling. His train of discourse was nearly as follows:
It were useless, his Majesty said, to make further suggestions, for to hear is not always to obey. If only a tenth part of all the practical hints that had been given from time to time, by persons standing where he then stood, had been systematically pursued, the usefulness of the Society would have been more apparent. Not but that the Society had done much good, and awakened an interest, in the minds of many besides its members, which might be considered as the dawn of a brighter day. His intention was briefly to examine the actual condition of agriculture science and practice; to show, not what we might be, but what we are.
His Majesty spoke of the short-comings of the people as an agricultural population, and though he set down naught in malice it is equally certain that he extenuated nothing. This plain speaking tells with the Hawaiians, especially when it falls from the lips of their hereditary rulers. In the first place allusion was made to the almost universal want of perseverance which marks the character of the laboring classes more than that of any other. The King showed in few words how necessary it is to make agriculture an absorbing pursuit, the only pursuit in fact of the man who engages in it, proving that the intermission of a day may often render nugatory the labor of a month. No man in fact having put his hand to the plough ought to look back, till the last process of all dependent upon ploughing has been brought to the best possible issue. In the next place, the want of capital was touched on, and spoken of as a very serious draw-back, though not an insurmountable objection to the pursuit of agriculture. In a country like this where the necessaries of life are so easily supplied, one man's steady labor will always produce very much more than one man's sustenance, and the overplus with ordinary thrift—or what would be considered such in other lands—becomes so much capital with which to increase the scope of an individual's exertions, and provide those means and appliances which by reducing labor add to profit. A carelessness to observe and communicate the results of observation as to seasons and localities, was another peculiarity common amongst the Hawaiians. The natives are too much inclined to make an attempt without first gaining all the information procurable in regard to the particular plant or vegetable they intend to cultivate. Slight variations in the altitude of different fields above the level of the sea, and differences in the quality of the soil, produce oftentimes no less results than failure on the one hand and success on the other. But the Hawaiians are too apt to make an essay without previous enquiry, and afterwards to keep to themselves the result of the experiment. This should not be in a country which is visited weekly in its whole length and breadth by a newspaper intended, more than for any other purpose, to spread a knowledge of practical agriculture and afford a medium for intercommunication upon points interesting to persons engaged in the original pursuit of our race. The King enforced this idea with great earnestness, begging his hearers to look upon themselves as links in the chain of improvement, dependent upon the past, as future laborers would depend upon them for such experience as to seasons, methods and localities as might be worthy of record and transmission to another generation.
The absence of methodical habits in the tillers of the soil was adverted to. Whilst on this subject, the King spoke of the utter disregard showed for any regularity in the hours of commencing and leaving off work. This desultory system is greatly aided by the want of stated hours for taking food and retiring to rest. If there were a common hour for breakfast and dinner, the hours for labor would be regulated and understood. The want of economy, not of time only, but of material, too, and labor, was then touched on. His Majesty seemed to be hinting at the old saying that "a stitch in time saves nine," a fact usually disregarded by the natives of this country. One gap in a fence is generally a prelude to its total destruction, whereas half a day's work might save it for years to come, and prevent the outlay at some future day of the labor and material necessary to build a new one. But we cannot follow the line of illustration used to enforce this point; suffice it to say that the matter was made intelligible and the value of economy fully vindicated. After some remarks on roads and means of communication by water, in which steam was spoken of as one of the agents to which our agriculturists must look for a helping hand up the hill that leads to competency and opulence, the King strongly recommended the planting of fruit trees, and went into some practical details of the method now pursued by the natives of Kona, Hawaii, who as a class bid fair not long hence to be, perhaps, more comfortably off than the people of any other district. Coffee, oranges, lemons and grape-vines were more particularly recommended to the fostering care of the audience. Allusion was also made to Dr. Hillebrand's very able remarks on the advantages of shade trees. His Majesty then brought his address to a close with a few general remarks that told home, breathing as they did the spirit of his often repeated exhortation to his people to remember that none will help those who will not help themselves—that responsible men must not, like children at their games, sit down to "open their mouths and shut their eyes," and "see what God will send them."
MAY 26, 1857.
His Majesty's Reply to the Address of S. N. Castle, Esq., on Presenting a Bible on behalf of the "American Bible Society."
The volume you present me in behalf of the American Bible Society, and the letter with which it is accompanied, I receive with a mingled feeling of pleasure and reverence. When I remember the moral illumination and the sense of social propriety which have spread throughout these islands, in proportion as the Holy Scriptures have been circulated, I cannot but admire and respect the human agency through which Providence has effected its benign purpose. But of all the members of the institution, there is none with whom I could more gladly find myself in communication than the Secretary, whose labors have won for him a name among Christian philanthropists which might excite a world to emulation.
I will not attempt to echo the tone of fervent admiration and gratitude with which you allude to the happy changes effected by the dissemination of God's Holy Word. But from the position I occupy, the facts meet me whichever way I turn my eyes. I see them every day and every hour. I see principles taking root among my people that were unknown and unintelligible to them at that dark period of our religious history to which you have referred. They have now a standard by which to judge of themselves and of each other as members of society. Without that standard no law but the law of autocratic power could have ruled them. Its absence would have rendered the gift of free institutions, such as they now enjoy, a worse than useless act of magnanimity on the part of my predecessors. The commerce and intercourse with other countries to which we owe our present prosperity would have been checked by numberless difficulties. In one word, we see through all our relations the effect of those aspirations and principles inculcated by this sacred volume.
I should be wanting to myself did I not express the gratification I feel at seeing here present some of those who were the first to labor in the vineyard. Although they look for their reward elsewhere, they will not reject my passing tribute of respect. Their labor has been long and their anxiety great, but their constancy and patience have equaled the emergency. The result of their life's work may even disappoint them if they judge it by the anticipation of their more sanguine years. Yet, in their decline of life, they see some of the fruits they prayed for, and they will not complain when they remember that the measure of their success is from above.
Allow me to thank you for your personal share in the presentation, and through you to express my kindest acknowledgments to the American Bible Society.
DECEMBER 10, 1857.
BY ORDER OF THE KING.
It is hereby proclaimed that Thursday, the 31st of December ensuing, be kept as a day of solemn fasting and humiliation for sin, and of thanksgiving to Almighty God for numberless unmerited mercies and blessings received during the year that expires on that day.
JANUARY 21, 1858.
His Majesty's Reply to the Address of Capt. Davis, of the U. S. Sloop St. Marys, upon the eve of her Departure for San Francisco.
I can heartily assure you, Captain Davis, that it would have been a source of unfeigned regret to me, had circumstances prevented my having this last interview with you before your departure from these waters. When I say last, I mean the last during the visit of the St. Marys, for I sincerely hope to see you here again, and when you do return, I hope you will bring with you the same officers whose sojourn here with you has contributed so much to the social enjoyment of the last few months.
Your desire to increase the good understanding existing between my Government and your own has been so conspicuous that I cannot but congratulate the latter upon the happy circumstances that in sending a ship here, for the preservation of safety and order, the command of that vessel devolved upon no other than you. That you have been successful in your object, must be a matter of pride to you, and I do not think you will hear with indifference from my lips the simple announcement, that I and every member of my Government have appreciated those exertions, but no one more so than I, whose opportunities of judging of your intentions have, I am happy to say, been more numerous than those of some others.
MAY 21, 1858.
Replies by His Majesty to the Congratulatory Addresses on the Birth of a Son and Heir to His Throne, by A. P. Everett, Esq., for himself and other Foreign Consuls; by H. R. H. Prince General Kamehameha; by the Rev. Mr. Damon and other Clergymen; and by the U. S. Consul, A. Pratt, Esq., for Foreign Residents generally.
His Majesty replied as follows:
GENTLEMEN:—I very kindly thank you for the congratulations you have just offered to the Queen and myself, and for the kind wishes you have expressed for the prosperity and happiness of the infant Prince. I also thank you for the many expressions of sympathy and good will which you have employed towards my people and Government, and for the prosperity of both. I assure you that the prosperity and happiness of my country, and of all who live within my rule, are subjects dear to my heart. And there is no greater encouragement afforded me that the hopes so often expressed by the friends of the Hawaiian people will be fulfilled, than the knowledge that I have the support and sympathy of the great and powerful nations whose officers I rejoice to see before me on this, to me, particularly happy day.
PRINCE AND SOLDIERS:—The expressions of loyalty you have just uttered are very welcome to me. There is no tie between the head of a government and his troops like that of mutual good wishes and a common object. Such exists between us, and may it never cease to exist. So long as it does we have nothing to fear of one another, but every thing to hope. In the Queen's name and that of our infant son I thank you kindly for your generous wishes.
Turning to Mr. Damon and the other reverend gentlemen present His Majesty observed:
GENTLEMEN:—For your valuable present allow me to thank you in the name of my son, whose advent into this life has been greeted so kindly, so heartily, by the community at large, but by none more sincerely, or with more ardent wishes for his real happiness than by yourselves—of that I am sure. The birth of the young Prince has placed me in a relationship to which I have hitherto been a stranger, and it has imposed upon me new responsibilities. I trust that in my conduct towards him throughout my life, I may remember the particular offering which your affection deemed most proper, and that as this Bible is one of my boy's first possessions, so its contents may be the longest remembered. In the Queen's name and my own I thank you, and it shall be the task of both of us to teach our first-born child to kindly regard you.
Then addressing himself more particularly to Mr. Consul Pratt, and from him to the assembly in general, His Majesty added:
GENTLEMEN AND FRIENDS:—I receive your congratulations on this occasion with mixed feelings of pleasure and pride. I take pleasure in knowing that the event which has given so much happiness in my own domestic circle, has caused a pleasure in this whole community and brought to my house these unmistakable marks of sympathy and good will; and I cannot but feel pride, at such a time as this, in knowing that my first-born child, the destined heir to the position I now occupy, enters the world amidst your hearty acclamations. I thank you for those expressions towards the Queen and myself, which are reiterations of feelings often expressed, and more often manifested than expressed, but which come doubly welcome at a time when every parent's heart has a yearning for sympathy. Gentlemen, you see me a proud father, and by these manifestations of your love for me and mine you make me a proud King. Such occasions as these make a throne worthy of any man's envy, whilst the feelings uppermost in my heart will establish and seal from this time forth a new tie between me and every man who, like myself, can say he has a child.
MAY 22, 1858.
Reply by His Majesty to the Address presented to Him by the Lodge of Free Masons and the Royal Arch Chapter of Honolulu.
MOST EXCELLENT HIGH PRIEST, COMPANIONS AND BRETHREN:
Bound together as we are in a holy league of brotherhood, I should not be doing justice to the feelings which actuate me in my relationship with yourselves, and operate amongst us all, did I deny that I almost expected you would seek a special occasion to felicitate me in the character in which we now appear. For all your kind wishes I thank you from the bottom of my heart, and among the many blessings for which I have, at this time, especial reason to be thankful to our Supreme Grand Master, I do not reckon this the least, that I enjoy the sympathy of a Fraternity whose objects are so pure, and whose friendships so true as those of our Order. I will not multiply words, but believe me, that when I look upon my infant son, whose birth has been the cause of so much joy to me, and of so much interest to yourselves, the thought already crosses my mind that perhaps one day he may wear these dearly prized badges, and that his intercourse with his fellow men, like his father's, may be rendered more pleasant, and, perhaps, more profitable, by his espousing those solemn tenets which make the name of a Freemason honorable throughout the world.
MAY 25, 1858.
Replies by His Majesty to the Hon. D. L. Gregg, Commissioner of the United States, and to the Hon. James W. Borden, his Successor, upon his Presentation as the new Commissioner.
His Majesty, turning to Mr. Gregg, replied:
From the renewed assurances of sympathy and good will towards this Kingdom which, on the part of the President of the United States of America, you have just expressed, I cannot but derive the liveliest gratification, reminding me as they do of the long course of years during which the successive Heads of your Government have offered, through their Representatives here, similar professions of amity, without one interruption having occurred to mar the retrospect. I should be sorry were the President, or you, to suppose for one instant that I regard these professions merely as a civil form of words called for by the occasion.
The Government of the United States has never flattered me or my Predecessors with expectations of more than it intended to perform; the action has always followed true to the word, and we know by experience the value of such assurances as those to which I have just listened with so much satisfaction.
It is, indeed, a fact worthy of notice and of remembrance, that the relations existing between the two countries were never more happy, or more calculated to inspire the smaller nation with a sense of independence and an appreciation of the fact that its future is in its own hands, than at this very moment, when, after having faithfully watched the interests intrusted to your care for more than four years, you are resigning that honorable duty into other hands. You have shown that strength of purpose may be united with courtesy of manner, and have justified your appointment by proving that their rights are best guarded, whose representative, being honest in his own intentions, does not without cause doubt the faith of the Government to which he is accredited.
Although I am afraid you over-estimate the actual value of the marks of courtesy and attempts to make agreeable your residence and that of your family upon these islands, which we have sought to offer, I thank you for the kind expression of your acknowledgments, and trust that you will always believe that my object, and that of every member of my Government, was but poorly carried out by any manifestations which it has been in our power to make. But, Mr. Gregg, not to seem to claim more credit than we deserve, allow me to add that the attempt was by no means a disinterested one, for in all the relations of society, those persons are most welcome who ornament it most and are themselves the most courteous.
I have too much confidence in the good will and sympathy of the Government of the United States, and faith in the wisdom of the President, to allow of a single doubt as to the course which your successor will pursue. It shall be my endeavor, and that of my Government, to regard him as the honored Representative of a great nation, and a good Friend. I believe that his dealings with us will be generous, that he will pursue the policy which in the hands of his predecessors has so largely helped to make this nation what it is to-day, and that if, coming after you, he cannot increase the feelings of kindness, and on one side of gratitude, which already exist here and in the United States, he will at least maintain them.
Then addressing himself to Mr. Borden, the King spoke as follows:
In welcoming you as the Representative of the United States, allow me to say, Mr. Borden, that I anticipate nothing but the most satisfactory intercourse between you and my Government. The country from which you are accredited has afforded too many tokens of good will, and manifested too lively an interest in all that concerns this archipelago, and that for too long a succession of years, to leave any question possible as to its future policy.
So long as such feelings exist on your side, and we retain gratitude enough to remember with acknowledgments the benefits we have already received from the Government and people of the United States, and can appreciate the advantages continually derived from the friendship and countenance of such a nation, there is little chance that the harmony now happily existing will be disturbed. I thank you for the kind terms in which you have alluded to the birth of the Prince, my son—an event which has filled me with the greatest pleasure and gives rise to many hopeful anticipations.
MAY 29, 1858.
Published by Authority in the Polynesian, May 29, 1858.
ROYAL LETTERS PATENT.
Know all men that we, Kamehameha, by the Grace of God, of the Hawaiian Islands King, by virtue of the power and authority in us vested as Sovereign of these realms, and in accordance with Article XXXVII, of the Constitution of our Kingdom, have decreed, and do, by these our Royal Letters Patent, constitute, establish and declare the following to be the style and title of our infant Son, born on the twentieth day of May, instant, the Hereditary Heir Apparent of Our Throne, viz:
"HIS ROYAL HIGHNESS THE PRINCE OF HAWAII."
He, Our said infant son, from now and henceforth to assume, and to receive the aforesaid style and title for himself, and, in the event of his succeeding Us in the Throne, and having male issue of his body lawfully begotten, then, the said style and title shall descend to, and be the style and title of his first-born son, as being the nearest hereditary and Constitutional Heir to the Throne of the Hawaiian Islands. Done at the Palace, in Honolulu, this twentieth day of May, A. D. 1858, and in the 4th year of Our Reign. (Signed,) KAMEHAMEHA.
JUNE 11, 1858.
His Majesty's Speech at the Opening of the Session of the Hawaiian Legislature of 1858.
NOBLES AND REPRESENTATIVES:—Since the Legislature was last in session, it has pleased Almighty God to bless me with a son. The birth of an Heir to the Throne is an event which you, now congregated to pass measures, not for the temporary only, but for the permanent prosperity of the Hawaiian Islands, under a Constitutional Monarchy, cannot but regard with solemn interest. Not only the continuance of his life, but the characteristics which the Prince may develop as he grows to manhood, and the education to be imparted to him, are matters in no small degree inseparable from the future of our country's history—from that distant part of it in which I, and many, if not all of you, will take no share. Gentlemen, the child is yours as well as mine; the circumstances that attend his birth deprive me of an undivided interest in him, for if such be the will of Divine Providence, he will one day be to your sons what I am to their fathers. Destined as he is to exercise a paramount influence in years to come, I consecrate him to my people, and with God's help, I will leave unused no faculty with which I am indued to make him worthy of your love and loyalty, and an ornament to the Throne of his great Predecessor who only did battle to establish peace and lay the foundations of order.
I have called you together according to the requirements of the Constitution. Having thus fulfilled the duty imposed upon me, I would suggest to you, Nobles and Representatives, the propriety, under existing circumstances, of confining the business of the present session to providing, by a Joint Resolution, or otherwise, for the financial necessities of the Government, and appointing a Joint Committee to report after an adjournment and as soon as practicable, to their respective Houses, upon the New Code, or such portions of it as may be ready for presentation by the Commission appointed by the Legislature of 1856 to prepare it.
The reasons for such a course will appear in the fact that the Commissioners selected to revise, codify and amend the laws now in force, partly on account of the ill health of one of the members, now deceased, and partly from the laborious nature of the task imposed upon persons whose time was already occupied by the duties of office, have been unable to perfect their work within the time, which before the undertaking was commenced, was deemed sufficient. The Joint Committee could only receive and proceed to review such portions of the Revision as are already prepared, and receive more as the Commissioners progressed. By means of a little inquiry, the time when their report upon the whole would probably be forthcoming might be ascertained, when the two Houses could meet again to review the Report and proceed with the general business of the country.
The suggestion I have made demands further consideration from the fact that a new Treaty, negotiated between me and the Emperor of the French, has lately been returned from Paris, accompanied by the formal ratification of the Emperor. It now awaits a similar concurrence, on my part, to render it effective. In accordance with the provision of our Constitution, this Treaty is now under consideration by me, in my Privy Council of State. The provisional Act, therefore, which a former Legislature passed, will become operative or otherwise, according to the result of those deliberations I refer to, and until that result becomes known the Minister of Finance cannot make to you a satisfactory showing of the probable receipts of the Government for this and the next fiscal year; and without such data to go by you will hardly be able to dispose of the strictly financial business of the country.
So, too, in regard to the Civil Acts, the passage of which draws so largely upon the time of your two Houses. It would be nothing less than a waste of labor to alter, by separate enactments, those laws which the Revised Code will amend, or to sanction new provisions, in that Compendium already provided for, and which temporary enactments would, therefore, become valueless almost as soon as they should have been promulgated.
Believing, gentlemen, that you will coincide with me in seeing the necessity for a speedy adjournment, after having made the provisions I have pointed out, I forbear to call your attention to the general business and details to which I should otherwise direct your notice.
MARCH 31, 1859.
Special Message of His Majesty sent to the Legislature of 1859.
NOBLES AND REPRESENTATIVES:—I deem it my duty, as Chief Magistrate of the Kingdom, to submit to the Legislature certain points in regard to which the organic law seems to require revision.
Experience has conclusively shown that the Constitution of 1852 does not, in many important respects, meet the expectations of its framers, or of my Predecessor, by whom it was voluntarily conceded.
It is the part of wisdom to derive lessons from experience, and to regulate our future policy in conformity with its suggestions.
The 105th Article of the Constitution prescribes the ordinary mode of amendment. Without reference to a different manner of revision, clearly founded on the inherent rights of the different Estates of my Kingdom, I am, at this time, content to appeal to the Legislature for such action as will provide an adequate remedy for all existing difficulties.
I am satisfied that it would result in great public advantage to allow to my Executive Ministers the privilege of election to the House of Representatives, except when constituted Members of the House of Nobles by Royal Patent. It would also, in my opinion, be politic to permit additions to be made to the House of Nobles for a term of years as well as for life. These changes are earnestly recommended and urged upon your favorable consideration.
I further recommend that the House of Representatives be limited, as to its members, to a number not exceeding twenty; and that a suitable property qualification for eligibility be established. The compensation of such members ought also to be definitely fixed for the entire period of their service, so as to avoid all inducements to protracted sessions beyond the requirement of the public good.
Relying on your wisdom and patriotic disposition, I place these suggestions before you, in the full confidence that they cannot fail to meet your sanction. I entertain no doubt that if the Constitution should be amended in conformity thereto, a beneficial reform of the Legislative Department would be effected, and the general advantage of my Kingdom thereby greatly promoted.
MAY 4, 1859.
His Majesty's Speech Proroguing the Legislature of 1859.
NOBLES AND REPRESENTATIVES:—I congratulate you upon having concluded the labors of a Session protracted beyond my expectation, and, I imagine, that of the country at large. I trust that after all the attention which has been expended on the revised Civil Code, the result will prove a compilation sound in its principles and convenient in its arrangement. If it have no other effect than to encourage a decrease of litigation, by exposing in its proper place the law applicable to every civil regulation which legislation makes the frame-work of our national system, your time, and the expenses of the session, will not have been consumed in vain.
I have heard with satisfaction that the amendments of the Constitution which I suggested and laid open to your consideration, have been acted upon, and I do not doubt that the next session will see them confirmed and made effective. I think they will initiate a more wholesome system of legislation, prevent unnecessary delays and expenses, and place the Executive Government in a position better calculated for giving explanations and receiving instructions from that House which originates every fiscal measure.
I thank you, Representatives, for the provision you have made for myself and those nearest to me; and, while alluding to the Bill of Appropriations, I cheerfully notice the fact, that in making distribution of the revenue, you have, for the first time, proposed for the country a system of expenditure strictly proportioned to the estimated receipts.
I confess that the act of your two Houses which I regard with most complacency, is that in which you commit the public Treasury to the aid of Hospitals. You, Representatives, amongst whose constituents are those very persons for whom these places of refuge are principally designed, have expressed a kind and grateful feeling for the personal share which I and the Queen have taken in the labor of securing the necessary means for the establishment of a Hospital in Honolulu. Whilst acknowledging your courtesy, I wish to take this first public occasion to express the almost unspeakable satisfaction with which I have found my efforts successful beyond my hopes. It is due to the subscribers as a body, that I should bear witness to the readiness, not less than the liberality, with which they have met my advances. When you return to your several places, let the fact be made known, that in Honolulu the sick man has a friend in everybody. Nor do I believe that He who made us all, and to whose keeping I commend in now dismissing you, has seen with indifference how the claims of a common humanity have drawn together, in the subscription list, names representative of almost every race of men under the sun.
MAY 20, 1859.
Replies by His Majesty to the Felicitations of the Commissioners of France and of the United States, and to the Captain of the Honolulu Rifle Corps, on behalf of its Members, on the first Anniversary of the Birth of H. R. H. the Prince of Hawaii.
GENTLEMEN:—I receive with unfeigned satisfaction the congratulations which you offer on this the first anniversary of the birth of the Heir to the Throne. As the Representatives of nations so pre-eminently called upon, by virtue of their physical and intellectual resources, to watch and foster the progress of the human race at large, I rejoice in those aspirations with which you have connected the future career of my infant son. To you, gentlemen, and to the Governments of which you are the honored organs, the best thanks of the Father and Mother of the Prince of Hawaii are cordially tendered.