THE FIRST PUBLIC SPEECH
By His Highness
THE ALII WILLIAM PITT LELEIOHOKU,
Before the Citizens at Ewa, Oahu.
[Ewa’s makaainana are surely very proud that they were victorious, hearing the words from His Highness, the Chief, and the Crowned Prince of the Nation, W. P. Leleiohoku, on Saturday, April 25, 1874. Because of the excellence of the content, and that this is the very first of his speeches, and because of the great desire and admiration for it, therefore, we are putting it before the public to admire it for themselves, to see the intelligent expression from the Young Prince. Ed.]
O Citizens:—My naau¹ is filled with joy to see upon your faces this day, a sign telling me that your loving hearts are encouraged by the astute remarks of our King spoken of in his royal address pertaining to one of the foundations of His Kingdom, that being
“The Increase of the Lahui.”
The is an important question which our King puts before you, and not just you, but before all of the citizens of His Kingdom from Hawaii to Kauai; it is a wide, deep, and lingering question. And this is the appropriate time for us to raise this question to consider it, being that the lahui continues to decrease, from the conditions as shown in the dark ages gone by.
As I speak on the subject of this question, let us look to the future, and consider the character of the One who asked this question, that being our current King. He did not simply take up [lawe kamako²] this endeavor, or do it on his own; he carefully considered it, trusting in your patience in helping Him in search out means to rejuvenate this lahui.
That is how we recognize His Aloha for the Makaainana, that he thinks of the people, and is concerned for parents; by the features of his broad ideas which he explained to you. There are only a few of you who have gathered to meet with our King today; however, there are a great many more of you compared to the hundreds of you who remained at home.
It is as if when looking at the times of the former Kings, the way of life of the makaainana under the Government was dismal and sad; and I believe that under the intelligent administration of our King, we will have a contented life here on.
The nation is like a barrel being pushed by the people up a high hill with trouble; and when the top of the hill is reached, they take a break, the signal being given to stop, which is where our nation is now. And when the people roll the barrel downhill, it moves easily; I hope that is how we will rest, with work then that is easily done.
I am remiss to say that I do not have the proper time to speak of some ideas I have through my little knowledge; but I take this time standing before you as “a great honor,” being that this is my first time speaking before a crowd full of joy like this one, assisting in the royal address of our King. Aloha to you all.
¹Naau is the guts, where your mind, heart, and feelings reside.
²”Lawe kamako” is probably related to “lele kamoko”.
(Kuokoa, 5/2/1874, p. 2)