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When the seat of government was being established in Lāhainā in the 1830s, Hale Piula (iron roofed house,) a large two-story stone building, was built for Kamehameha III to serve as his royal palace.
But, by 1843, the decision was made to permanently place a palace in Honolulu; Hale Piula was then used as a courthouse, until it was destroyed by wind in 1858 – its stones were used to rebuild a courthouse on Wharf Street.
In Honolulu, Kekūanāo‘a (father of two kings, Kamehameha IV and V) was building a house for his daughter (Princess Victoria Kamāmalu.)
The original one story coral block and wooden building called Hanailoia was built in July 1844 on the grounds of the present ‘Iolani Palace.
But, in 1845 Kamehameha III took possession of it as his Palace; from then on, Honolulu remained the official seat of government in Hawai‘i.
At the time when Kekūanāo‘a erected the old Palace, the grounds were not so spacious as they are at present. On the western corner was Kekūanaō‘a’s house, which he had named Hali‘imaile.
Kekauluohi, a premier, erected her house in the vicinity. When John Young was premier, he built and lived in Kīna‘u Hale. Also, on the premises was Pohukaina.
The site of the Palace was once a section of the important heiau (temple,) Ka‘ahaimauli; other heiau were also in the vicinity of the Palace, including Kanela‘au and Mana.
The Palace was used mainly of official events and the structure had mainly offices and reception areas, since smaller buildings on the grounds served as residences for the rulers and their court; it was only one-third the floor area of the present Palace.
Kamehameha III built a home next door (on the western side of the present grounds, near the Kīna‘u gate, opening onto Richards Street;) he called the house “Hoihoikea,” (two authors spell it this way – it may have been spelled Hoihoiea) in honor of his restoration after the Paulet Affair of 1843. (Taylor and Judd)
(In 1843, Paulet had raised the British flag and issued a proclamation annexing Hawai‘i to the British Crown. This event became known as the Paulet Affair. Queen Victoria sent Rear Admiral Richard Thomas to restore the Hawaiian Kingdom. That day is now referred to as Ka La Hoʻihoʻi Ea, Sovereignty Restoration Day.)
“Hoihoikea” was a large, old-fashioned, livable cottage erected on the grounds a little to the west and mauka side of the old Palace. This served as home to Kamehameha III, Kamehameha IV and Kamehameha V: the Palace being used principally for state purposes. (Taylor)
The palace building was named Hale Ali‘i meaning (House of the Chiefs.)
During the reign of Kamehameha V, cabinet councils were frequently held there. This was where the council called the Constitutional Convention, the result of which was the abolition of the constitution of 1852 and the creation of a new one.
Hale Ali‘i was renamed ‘Iolani in 1863, at the request of King Kamehameha V (Lot Kapuāiwa.) The name “‘Iolani” was chosen by King Kamehameha V to honor his deceased brother, the former king, Kamehameha IV (Alexander Liholiho ‘Iolani.)
“‘Io” is the Hawaiian hawk, a bird that flies higher than all the rest, and “lani” denotes heavenly, royal or exalted.
The Palace served as the official state structure for five Kings: Kamehameha III, Kamehameha IV, Kamehameha V, Lunalilo and the first part of Kalākaua’s reign.
Theodore Heuck, who had earlier designed the new Mausoleum, designed a building called ‘Iolani Barracks, completed in 1871, to house the royal guards. Over time the various other houses on the grounds were removed and replaced with grass lawns.
Although the old palace was demolished in 1874, the name ʻIolani Palace was retained for the building that stands today.
The construction of the present ‘Iolani Palace began in 1879 and in 1882 ‘Iolani Palace was completed and furnished.
The image is a photo of Hale Ali‘I and floor plan (Judd.) In addition, I have included other images of the Palace and related images in a folder of like name in the Photos section on my Facebook page.
Founded in 1839, O‘ahu’s first school was called the Chief’s Children’s School. The cornerstone of the original school was laid on June 28, 1839 in the area of the old barracks of ‘Iolani Palace (at about the site of the present State Capitol of Hawaiʻi.)
The school was created by King Kamehameha III; the main goal of this school was to groom the next generation of the highest ranking chief’s children of the realm and secure their positions for Hawaii’s Kingdom.
Seven families were eligible under succession laws stated in the 1840 Constitution of the Kingdom of Hawai‘i; Kamehameha III called on seven boys and seven girls of his family to board in the Chief’s Children’s School (two more students were added in 1842.)
The Chiefs’ Children’s School was unique because for the first time Aliʻi children would be brought together in a group to be taught, ostensibly, about the ways of governance.
The School also acted as another important unifying force among the ruling elite, instilling in their children common principles, attitudes and values, as well as a shared vision.
Amos Starr Cooke (1810–1871) and Juliette Montague Cooke (1812-1896), missionaries from the American Board of Commissioners for Foreign Missions, were selected to teach the 16 royal children and run the school.
(After his experience running the school teaching and training Hawai‘i’s future monarchs, Amos Cooke then co-founded the firm Castle & Cooke which became one of the “Big Five” corporations that dominated the early Hawaiian economy.)
In this school were educated the Hawai‘i sovereigns who reigned over the Hawaiian people from 1855, namely, Alexander Liholiho (King Kamehameha IV,) Queen Emma, Lot Kamehameha (King Kamehameha V,) King William Lunalilo, King David Kalākaua and Queen Lydia Lili‘uokalani.
No school in Hawai‘i has ever produced so many Hawaiian leaders in one generation.
In addition, the following royal family members were taught there: Princess Bernice Pauahi Bishop, Princess Elizabeth Kekaaniau Pratt, Prince Moses Kekuaiwa, Princess Jane Loeau Jasper, Princess Victoria Kamāmalu, Prince Peter Young Kaeo, Prince William Pitt Kīnaʻu, Princess Abigail Maheha, Prince James Kaliokalani and Princess Mary Polly Paʻaʻāina.
They ranged upon entry from age two to eleven, and differed widely in their temperaments and abilities, goals and destinies. But they all had one common bond: their genealogical sanctity and mana as Aliʻi-born.
The school building was square-shaped, about seventy-six square feet in area, with a courtyard in the center and a well. The thirteen or so rooms included a large classroom, kitchen, dining room, sitting room and parlor, and living quarters for the students and the Cookes.
The entire complex was surrounded by a high wall, apparently intended as much to keep people out as to keep them in.
In 1846 the name was officially changed to Royal School; attendance was restricted to descendants of the royal line and heirs of the chiefs.
In 1850, a second school was built on the site of the present Royal School; it was opened to the general public in 1851.
In 1904, a two-story building was constructed and, in 1967, the present school was built. A new administration/library building was erected in 2000.
Today, Royal School is centrally located at 1519 Queen Emma Street (you drive by it as you go down Punchbowl Street as you come off the freeway.) The student body is made up of over 350 students.
Royal School truly has a proud past, as illustrated through the words of its school song: We are Na Ali’i of Royal School; We have a rich and royal past.