Peter Allan Brinsmade, 25, accompanied by his wife and child; William Ladd, 26, with his wife and child, and William Hooper, 24, single, arrived on Kauai on July 27, 1833, on the Brig Velocity. Brinsmade and Ladd were from Hallowell, Maine and Hooper from Boston, Massachusetts.
They started the firm Brinsmade, Ladd and Hooper; the name of the firm was changed in 1835 to Ladd & Company. On September 13, 1835, Ladd & Co., began the first major (and successful) Hawaiian sugar plantation.
In 1836, the Koloa Sugar Plantation consisted of 25 acres of sugar cane, 20 houses for laborers, 1 house for a superintendent, carpenter shop, blacksmith shop, mill dam, sugar house, boiling house, and the mill. (Ladd & Co)
They ran a sugar plantation for 12 years. In addition to the enterprise at Kōloa, Kauai, the company ran a profitable mercantile operation in Honolulu.
On November 24, 1841, Ladd and Company signed an agreement with the Hawaiian Kingdom. Then on May 17, 1843, an agreement was signed in the city of Brussels, in the kingdom of Belgium, between the Sandwich Islands Government, the Belgian Company of Colonization, and Ladd and Company.
The ‘Belgian Contract,’ signed in Brussels May 17, 1843, was a tripartite agreement between Kamehameha III (represented by Ha‘alilio and William Richards), Ladd and Company, and the Belgian Company of Colonization.
Ladd and Company transferred all of their properties and rights in the Hawaiian islands to the Belgian Company of Colonization, and the latter company agreed to organize a subsidiary corporation, called the ‘Royal Community of the Sandwich Islands.’
Its intent was “to develop as promptly as possible, the civilization and resources of the Sandwich Islands, by creating agricultural, manufacturing and commercial establishments, and by instituting commercial relations between these Islands and Belgium.” (Kuykendall)
“It was really a gigantic sale of Ladd and Co.’s property, involving all concessions and privileges obtained by them, the price for which, taken in the contract, was $1,067,000, or £42,680.”
“The manner of proceeding was, the transfer by Brinsmade of all property material and immaterial which he had power to pass, together with rights and concessions over which Mr. Richards had power, to the Belgian Company of Colonisation.”
“The contract or treaty was tripartite, the three parties to it being the King of Hawaii, represented by Haalilio and Richards; the house of Ladd and Co., acting by Brinsmade; and the Belgian Company of Colonisation, by its deputies, the Count of Hompesch and M. Joseph Vanderburghen de Binckum.”
“The Colonisation Company was only instrumental in this transaction. Its office was to organise the ‘Royal Community of the Sandwich Islands’ and to transfer to that society, when formed, the property, rights, and titles which it was to possess.”
“The community was, however, on its European side, to remain under ‘the patronage and high administration of the Belgian Company of Colonisation;’ whilst in the scene of its activity, it would he under the patronage and protection of the Hawaiian king.”
“Four interests were to be created in the undertaking, namely, the King of Hawaii; the Belgian Colonisation Company; the Labourers and Employes; and the Stockholders. “
“The property acquired by the Belgian Colonisation Company was to be divided into 500 titles, 100 of which were to be given to the King of Hawaii, so that His Majesty would still possess a share of his own country.” (Hopkins)
“By the 28th article, ‘all persons, of whatever profession in the service of the community, and introduced into the islands under the auspices of the community, with the approbation of the King of the Sandwich Islands, shall receive in fee simple twenty hectares of land.’”
“By the 27th article, 100 titles were set apart to support schools for the children of the labourers, a health establishment, an orphanage, and pensions for impotent and superannuated employes.” (Hopkins)
On April 13, 1844, at Brussels, the “Statutes of the Royal Community of the Sandwich Islands” were signed by Haalilio, Richards, Brinsmade, and the president of the board of directors of the Belgian Company of Colonization. (Kuykendall)
“(T)he effect of which, had it actually become operative, would have been to have destroyed the independence of the islands and to have gradually vested all property in them in the proprietary of the Belgian Company.” (Hopkins)
“Ha‘alilio signed the contract with great reluctance, and the king and chiefs were highly displeased over its execution. This Belgian contract gave a great deal of trouble before it was finally discredited.” (Jarves)
“Fortunately for the people of Hawaii, this new South Sea scheme never went into operation.” (Hopkins)
“The first blow which fell on its promoters was the news of Lord George Paulet’s occupation of the islands; then came delays until October 1844, when some merchants wanted to re-construct the plan ‘as a purely commercial company.’”
Nothing, however, came of the last proposition. (Hopkins)
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