Hiram Bingham and history, 1835.

Hear me, O Kepookulou, and those with knowledge, who have heard of the way of life of the alii of Hawaii of which you showed to us. You told us of the genealogy of this line of alii for fifty-seven generations, and we publish it in the Kumu Hawaii so that it is permanent, so that all the people and youth of Hawaii nei will understand from now into the future.

Where are these alii? They have all died. There is just one remaining. How did they live? People who know and who have heard, do tell us. When did they rule? We know the time of Liholiho and Kamehameha and Kalanikupuapaikalaninui, but the majority of them, we don’t know when they ruled.

When did Haloa rule? Was it perhaps during the time of Abraham? Or Moses perhaps? Maybe David? Or Jesus? Maybe they are older and Haloa is more recent.

From the time of Haloa until Kauikeaouli, how many years was it? Kauikeaouli has [ruled] ten years,¹ and five for Liholiho; how many did Kamehameha have, and each alii until Haloa? And when adding up all the years, how many years did they have all together?

Here is another thing. What were the nature of each of the alii? What deeds did they accomplish? How did the people live under their rule? Who were the alii below each of these alii? What did they do? Who were the good alii of Hawaii? Who were the militant alii? Who were the alii who ruled without war, like Kauikeaouli? Who were the alii who rebelled? Who were the alii who inherited the rule from their parent? Who was the alii who cared for their people with benevolence? Who was the alii who overworked his people? Who was the alii who did not chastise or get angry at the alii under him? Who was the alii who lived righteously with just one wife? How many wives did each alii have? How many children did each alii have? How many alii had no children? How many went to foreign lands?

Who was the alii that was greatly knowledgeable in fishing? and farming? and warfare? and the caring for the land? Who was the alii that cared greatly for the gods? Who was the alii that did not covet the wealth of others and did not just take? Who was the alii that did not gamble? Who was the great gambler? How did they treat their women? How did the Maui alii act with the Hawaii alii? How did the Oahu alii and Kauai alii deal with the Hawaii alii? Which alii ruled all of the islands from Hawaii to Niihau? Who was the alii that killed another alii? Which alii perished in war? Which alii died without having gone to war? Who was the alii that wanted dearly to convert all the people to doing solely good so that their souls would be saved?

Hear me, O Kepookulou, and all you who are well-versed in the history of Hawaii nei, answer these things which I have asked about the alii of Hawaii and their motivation for doing the things they did, so that we clearly see…

(Kumu Hawaii, 8/19/1835, p. 133)

Auhea oe, e Kepookulou...

Ke Kumu Hawaii, Buke 1, Pepa 17, Aoao 133. Augate 19, 1835.

…who was good and who was bad, and what was beneficial and what was harmful for Hawaii nei, so that we understand that the good of Jesus was greater than theirs. By me, Bingham [Binamu].

[Although from his last comment we can see that Bingham’s end motivation seems to be proselytization, at least it encouraged the recording of history, partially resulting in this great treasury of information today in the Hawaiian-Language Newspapers.

Kepookulou of Napoopoo was one of the great kahuna listed with the likes of Hewahewa, Puou, and Kaleikuahulu. The genealogy of fifty-seven generations of rulers that Bingham refers to precedes this article, and runs from Haloa (m) and Hinamanaouluae (f) to Kalanikauikeaouli. (Kumu Hawaii, 8/19/1835, p. 133).]

¹In 1835, Kauikeaouli is in his 10th year as king, whereas his reign will span a total of 29 years.

(Kumu Hawaii, 8/19/1835, p. 134.)

kakou i na mea e pono ai...

Ke Kumu Hawaii, Buke 1, Pepa 17, Aoao 134. Augate 19, 1835.

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