“(A) small code of criminal law was prepared Dec. 8, 1827. This code was printed on a small hand bill in two forms both bearing the same date, Dec. 8, 1827 ….”
“One has six laws with penalties and the other five laws. The fourth and the sixth laws were practically the same. One referred to Hookamakama (prostitution) and the other to Moe Kolohe (adultery), both according to Hawaiian ideas could be included under the term ‘adultery.’”
“The five laws promulgated by the chiefs were as follows:
1. Against murder, penalty hanging.
2. Against theft, penalty imprisonment in irons.
3. Against rum, selling, penalty imprisonment in irons.
4. Against adultery, penalty a fine.
5. Against gambling, penalty imprisonment in irons.” (Westervelt)
“The way was thus cleared for action, but the foreigners brought their influence to bear against certain of the five laws which had been agreed upon and a change was made.”
“It was decided to adopt only three laws at this time, to go into effect in three months (i.e. in March, 1828).”
“These three laws were: first, against murder, ‘the one who commits murder here shall die, by being hung’; second, against theft, ‘the one who steals shall be put in irons’; third, against adultery, for which the penalty was imprisonment in irons.”
“Three other proposed laws, against rum selling, prostitution, and gambling, were drawn up, to be explained and taught to the people before they should be adopted.”
“It was agreed that the chiefs should meet six months later to continue their consultation upon the subject. The three laws adopted and the three proposed were printed together on one sheet, which bears the date December 8, 1827.”
“On December 14, the people were assembled in a coconut grove near the fort; the three enacted laws were formally proclaimed, and the king, Ka‘ahumanu, and Boki exhorted the people, both native and foreign, to obey the three laws which had been adopted and to give attention to the three which were not yet enacted.” (Kuykendall)
“Although these six laws were thus put in writing, signed by the king and printed, they were really enacted by the king and chiefs and proclaimed orally like other previous laws.”
“It was this way: When the first three of these laws had been decided upon, a general assembly was called, which was attended by the king, regent, chiefs and a great concourse of common people, including some foreigners.”
“This was under a grove of cocoanut trees near the sea. Mr. Bingham had been asked to attend and open the exercises with prayer if he did not fear harm from the hostile foreigners, and had replied that he would do his duty even if they burned him for it.”
“He was given a chair by Gov. Boki, and a little later, when the regent handed him a hymn book, he sung a hymn, offered a prayer and withdrew.”
“The king and regent then each addressed the chiefs and people and foreigners, proclaimed the first three of these laws and called on all to hear and obey them. Notice was also given of other proposed laws, which were not to be put in force until the people had been further educated up to them.”
“After adjournment, the missionaries were requested to print on handbills these three laws and the other three, which apparently had been proclaimed on a previous occasion.” (Frear)
“This was the beginning of formal legislation by the Hawaiian chiefs. The contemporary chroniclers considered it a matter of great significance that they had made a start in this important business.”
“The chiefs met again in June, 1828, but we have no record of what was accomplished. It is intimated that Ka‘ahumanu had difficulty in bringing the other chiefs to the task, and one report says they referred the business to David Malo who declined to take upon himself the responsibility.” (Kuykendall)
“Opposition again became threatening and made practically useless for a time the laws against rum selling and gambling, but little by little the chiefs gained confidence, issued proclamations and edicts and met guile with tact …”
“… until in 1829, a number of laws were in force and foreigners as well as the native-born, were proclaimed to be subject to the laws including rum selling and gambling.” (Westervelt)
“We have in fact very little information in regard to the conferences of the chiefs, but we hear of new laws from time to time, and on October 7, 1829, the king, in a formal proclamation, declared …” (Kuykendall)
“The laws of my country prohibit murder, theft, adultery, fornication, retailing ardent spirits at houses for selling spirits, amusements on the sabbath day, gambling and betting on the sabbath day, and at all times.”
“If any man shall transgress any of these laws, he is liable to the penalty, the same for every foreigner and for the people of these islands: whoever shall violate these laws shall be punished.”
“This also I make known: The law of the Great God of Heaven, that is, the great thing by which we shall promote peace; let all men who remain here obey it.”
“Christian Marriage is proper for men and women; but if a woman regard her man as her only husband, and the man regard his woman as his only wife, they are legally husband and wife …”
“… but if the parties are not married, nor regard themselves as husband and wife, let them be forth with entirely separate.” (Kamehameha III, Elliot) (The image shows Kamehameha III in 1825.)