Pu‘u O Kaimukī – Telegraph Hill

When Honolulu became a major port, “Kaimukī Hill” was used as a signal station (using semaphore technology,) giving it the name “telegraph hill.” It had broad view over the Pacific and line-of-sight to downtown Honolulu. Back then, they used this vantage point to spot ships coming in, and then conveyed the news to Honolulu.

Optical “telegraphs” or signaling devices have been traced back to ancient times (initially using torches) and were the fastest systems to convey messages over long distances; these “telegraphs” eventually moved toward semaphore towers. Semaphores used arms and blades/paddles to convey messages; messages were conveyed/decoded based on the fixed positions of these arms.

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Three Germans were among the crew aboard Captain James Cook first visit to the islands in 1778. A few years later, Captain Henry Barber ran aground at Kalaeloa on Oʻahu. Captain Barber (we refer to this as “Barber’s Point,” however, the traditional name, Kalaeloa, is coming back into more common use).

Later, other early Germans to the Islands include, German scholar Adelbert von Chamisso, Georg Anton Schäffer, Paul Isenberg,
Heinrich Hackfeld, Dr. William Hillebrand, Claus Spreckels and Captain Henri Berger

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Odd Fellows

The Independent Order of Odd Fellows (IOOF) is a fraternity of citizens who had its origin in the 18th century. The first Odd Fellow groups were formed in England and thought to have grown out of guilds, forerunner of today’s unions. It is believed that the first Odd Fellows were motivated by a concern for the members of their own groups, notably those in trouble and families who needed assistance, and the widow and the orphan.

It is believed that because these workers were helping other workers, rather than depending on patriarchal royal protection, and they were organized to do this charitable work, they were looked on as “Odd Fellows” and the name has remained with the Order. Symbolically, the order uses three links of interlocking chain ; each link has a letter, F, L & T, respectively, representing Friendship, Love and Truth.

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These posts are part of a personal learning experience; I have been searching to learn more about the place I and my family were born, raised, and live (and love) – then, share what I have learned.

Because of my Planning work across the Islands, as well as previously serving as Director of the State Department of Land and Natural Resources, State Historic Preservation Officer and Deputy Managing Director for Hawaiʻi County, I have had the opportunity to see some places and deal with some issues that many others have not had, nor will have, the same opportunity.

So, I am sharing some insights, events and places with others. These informal historic summaries are presented for personal, non-commercial and/or educational purposes. I hope you enjoy them. Thanks, Peter.

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