Today’s ‘Timeline Tuesday’ takes us through the 1930s – sugar production peaks, Pan-Am Clipper service begins, Hickam Airfield is constructed, ‘Aloha Shirt’ is trademarked and Doris Duke builds Shangri La. We look at what was happening in Hawai‘i during this time period and what else was happening around the rest of the world.
“John D. Paris came to Hawaii in 1841 as a missionary. He was not originally supposed to come to Hawai‘i. He was on his way to the Oregon territory. But the boat they were on brought some of the missionaries who were to join the mission here in Hawai‘i. They were going to drop them off, then proceed on to Oregon. When he arrived here in the mission, they said the field in South Kona had deteriorated and they had nobody really there. So, they prevailed upon him to take the assignment in South Kona, which he did. He was very active here. He built nine churches throughout Kona, mostly in South Kona, the first of which is the old church Kahikolu above Napo‘opo‘o”.
Another Paris church was at Miloli‘i. Paris built the Hau‘oli Kamana‘o Church. “Thursday, April 2d (1868,) at a few minutes past four, pm, the big earthquake occurred, which caused the ground around Kilauea to rock like a ship at sea.” A tsunami struck the coast from Hilo to South Cape, being most destructive at Keauhou, Puna and Honuʻapo. The Hauʻoli Kamana’o Church was pushed about 300 yards inland by the rushing sea, with little or no damage. The original location of the church is now underwater. Villagers later moved the church to its present-day site using palm trunks to roll it into place.
June 28, 1914, Archduke Franz Ferdinand, heir to Austria-Hungary’s throne, and his wife, Sophie, were assassinated. A month later, Austria-Hungary declared war on Serbia. Within days, other countries got into the fray, including, Germany, Russia, France and United Kingdom; US President Woodrow Wilson announced the US would remain neutral. After attempts to broker peace, then sinking of the American cargo ship Housatonic, Wilson broke off diplomatic relations with Germany. With German submarine warfare continuing unabated, the final straw came on April 1, 1917, when the armed merchant ship Aztec was sunk off the northwest coast of France.
The attack on the Aztec led to America’s intervention into World War I. “There are five Hawaiian boys thought to have been killed along with 16 Americans when the American steamer the Aztec was sunk.” “An incident of unusual interest took place just prior to the reception. Colonel ʻIaukea had told Lili‘uokalani of the sinking of the Aztec, resulting in the death of five Hawaiian sailors, and asked her if on that account she would like to raise the American flag over her home. … She replied, most emphatically: ‘Yes.’”
Englishmen James and John Starkey and Robert Cheshire Janion founded Starkey, Janion, & Co, a trading company in Liverpool, in April 1845. They chartered a vessel and filled it with general merchandise valued at $80,000; it set sail for Honolulu. On arrival Janion rented a room on Nuʻuanu Street near the waterfront and hung out a sign “Starkey, Janion & Co.” The firm quickly prospered. Later, William Green was appointed to run the business. A Welshman, 23-year-old Theophilus Harris Davies, was persuaded to go out to Hawaiʻi as a clerk.
Eventually the Janion-Green partnership was dissolved and Davies became Janion’s partner. In 1876, Davies incorporated Honolulu Iron Works with Janion, Janion’s wife, Green’s mother and Alexander Young. Davies took control in 1881. Davies proved himself an aggressive promoter and was adept at raising capital and helped finance a total of 22-sugar plantations during his career. Years later, Davies was a stockholder in von Hamm-Young Company, forerunner of The Hawaiʻi Corporation. Formerly organized into merchandise, insurance and shipping departments, Theo H Davies set up subsidiaries for all its activities. It was one of Hawaiʻi’s Big Five (Amfac – starting as Hackfeld & Company (1849;) Alexander & Baldwin (1870;) Theo H. Davies (1845;) Castle & Cooke (1851) and C. Brewer (1826).
Today’s ‘Timeline Tuesday’ takes us through the 1920s – dredging of the Ala Wai Canal, Hawaiian Pineapple buys Lāna‘i, billboards outlawed and Honolulu Hale is completed. We look at what was happening in Hawai‘i during this time period and what else was happening around the rest of the world.