Stopping by at Washington, D. C. on the way to see the Queen, 1887.



Arrangements Made for the Queen to Call on the President and Mrs. Cleveland—A Benevolent Creature on Her Way to Visit Victoria—Queen Emma.


Washington, May 4.—Queen Kapiolani, of the Hawaiian Islands, who arrived in San Francisco on April 20, arrived in Washington to-day and immediately went to the Arlington Hotel. Arrangements have been made for the queen to call on the president and Mrs. Cleveland at noon on Wednesday. The queen and suite will arrive here early Tuesday evening and go at once to the Arlington. A time will be appointed by the queen during her stay here for the diplomatic corps to call on her, and she will also probably receive calls from the naval officers who have been stationed at Honolulu, all of whom have met her majesty, and many of whom have danced with her.

After spending a few days here sight-seeing she will go to New York. From there she goes to England to be present at the Queen’s jubilee. She has never been out of her own country before, and is quite anxious to see the “greatest woman on the face of the earth,” as she calls Queen Victoria. Queen Kapiolani is not of what is known as royal blood in Honolulu. Strictly speaking neither is King Kalakaua of royal blood, as he was elected to the throne and did not inherit it.

The last of the royal family in the Hawaiian Islands was the late Queen Emma. Although not occupying the throne she was treated with the greatest respect and veneration. She had a magnificent house and retinue of servants, but she seldom used either. She would lie on the ground sunning herself all day, and eat nothing but “poi poi.” “Poi poi” is the national dish and is made of Tara root and raw fish. There is three kinds of “poi”—one finger “poi,” which is thick enough to take up on one finger. None but the expert eat this kind and it is a very difficult feat to whirl one finger around in the “poi” and carry it to your mouth without losing any. Two finger “poi” is a little thinner, while three finger “poi” is intended for children and strangers. Queen Emma always used one fingered “poi” and was known as one of the most expert eaters on the island. Her band was the finest in Honolulu, and every Tuesday and Saturday would play in “Queen Emma’s” gardens.

King Kalakaua, though not greatly liked, is very much feared. As he drives through the streets in his brougham, drawn by a pair of magnificent horses, the people all stop and uncover. He never returns a salute except to foreigners. He is passionately fond of boat racing, and always keeps a fourteen oared barge and a six oared gig for racing purposes. None of the visiting men of war except the American race with him. All the res are afraid of the “Kanaka” boats. In 1882 when the “Alaska” was in Honolulu, she had one of the fastest fourteen oared boats in the service, and challenged the king’s people to race. The Americans won, and about $10,000 changed hands on the result. Kalakaua took the victorious Americans ashore and gave them a banquet. As they were leaving the king presented each with a pair of small golden oars and $20 in money.

The king thinks a great deal of Americans, as the following incident will show: An apprentice boy named Hopkins deserted from the Hartford at San Francisco and went to Honolulu. After knocking about for some time and not being able to get anything to do, he went to the king and said: “Mr. Kalakaua, I am an American and want some work.” “Well,” said the king, “I like your nerve and will see what I can do for you.” The next day he was made a government overseer, at a salary of $1,200 per annum. Queen Kapiolani is about forty years old. She is very large, and has a benevolent cast of feature. She interests herself in all charities, and has been the means of getting an appropriation of $15,000 for the Kapiolani home for girls. She is accompanied by the Princess Silivikalani, who is the king’s sister, and heiress to the throne. The party is under the charge of Col. Pankaa, the king’s chamberlain. He has been all over Europe and the United States, and speaks several languages fluently. The queen speaks nothing but her native tongue, and is thus safe from the interviewer.

[This is a newspaper from Canton, Ohio. It is interesting to see the sort of information being disseminated in America at the time.]

(Stark County Democrat, 5/5/1887, p. 1)


The Stark County Democrat, Volume 53, Number 50, Page 1. May 5, 1887.

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