Nene being cared for by Herbert Shipman, etc. 1941.

[Found under: “Hunahuna Meahou o Hamakua Ame Kohala” by Mrs. Reinhardt.]

Last week, two men living and working at the Kilauea National Park came to Honokaa School, their names being Gunther Olsen and friend. The school was filled with its 496 students from 1st grade to 6th, to see pictures of the mountains of this island. Olsen described the different birds while his companion showed pictures of the birds on a white cloth. Truly beautiful were the pictures of the mamo, O-o, Elepaio, Iiwi, Apapane, and so forth. The names of the birds of ours were clearly pronounced in Hawaii by that man.

According what was said by this man, in Keaau is being cared for at the home of Herbert Shipman, NENE birds, which are believed to be going extinct, but they are increasing. Our birds were much more beautiful in the olden days before other birds were imported from all over, the birds that are a problem for the crops growing in our gardens. They eat flowers of the peppers [nioi], and that is why the nioi doesn’t fruit as they did in years past.

After the pictures of the birds were shown, pictures were shown of the burning fires of Pele atop Mokuaweoweo last year. These men climbed up Mokuaweoweo on horseback and when they reached a certain point, the horses were left and they went on foot until the crater. Where they were was scorching. While the fires were boiling, snow was seen on both sides covering the ground.

When the fires burst and shot up to between 150 and 180 feet, that was when the burning of the fires was the strongest, at 10 and 12 o’clock at night. It was when the fires died down that a shelf of pahoehoe collapsed into the crater, and in no time it liquified.

While we were watching, I thought of how fortunate I was for having seen these pictures which were made through the skill of these men who reached the top of Mokuaweoweo, took these the pictures, and came down to show them to the school. Seeing these pictures was like actually seeing Mokuaweoweo.

That evening, the women of the women’s club of Honokaa were invited by those men to come to the reception room [lumi hookipa] of the Honokaa library to drink tea and eat desserts. And after the tea was over, they showed once again the pictures of the birds and the fires of Mokuaweoweo to the women. Thanks were given to the two of them for their fine, educational efforts. Right after the presentation, they returned back for Kilauea.

[I was reminded of this article by the post about Nene by Nanea Armstrong-Wassel the other day. Go check out this post and all the other informative posts on the Instagram page! Does anyone have any information on Gunther Olsen and his unnamed partner?]

(Hoku o Hawaii, 10/22/1941, p. 1)

Ma kela pulee aku nei i kipa mai ai...

Ka Hoku o Hawaii, Volume XXXVI, Number 26, Aoao 1. Okatoba 22, 1941.

1 thought on “Nene being cared for by Herbert Shipman, etc. 1941.

  1. Swed or Norwegian – there’s are two unrelated Olsens in my family tree. One by marriage from the big island-from Norwegian contract labor in 1882. Chris


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