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“In the block on King street, bordered by Alapai and facing makai, there stands a garden. It is an old garden because the royal palms tower so high, and only ancient palms attain so majestic a height. For many years the owner of this garden, Mrs. Juliette M. Atherton, planted and tended the shrubs, vines and ferns with loving care. She named her home embowered in the shade of growing things, Fernhurst.”

In 1921, the Atherton family gifted their near-downtown residence, Fernhurst, to the YWCA in memory of their daughter, Kate, and in tribute to her deep interest in the welfare of girls. The original Fernhurst served as a temporary home for as many as 10,000 young working women. Later, in 1952, the Fernhurst property was sold to the Honolulu Rapid Transit Authority (the site is now the bus transit depot at Alapai and King Streets) and another ‘Fernhurst’ opened at its present location on Wilder Avenue, near Punahou School in Makiki. The Makiki Fernhurst is is now part of the Y’s transitional housing.

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Dr Theodore Richards’ first position in Hawaiʻi was teacher of the first class to graduate from the Kamehameha Schools and also as an instructor of

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The YWCA of Oʻahu is the oldest continuous service organization devoted to women and children in Hawaiʻi; in 1900, a small group of women met

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