On the eleventh of November, 1835, Henry Benjamin Nalimu was born, at Papaaloa, North Hilo, Hawaii, the land of birth of his parents.
On November, he became ninety-six years old at “Kamaluokaohai,” at 1536 Alewa Drive, the home of his grandchildren.
Nalimu is a descendant of his ancestor I, who was a famed strategist of Kamehameha ka Na’i Aupuni.
The I, the Mahi, and the Palena, were famous troops of Kamehameha, and leaders of Kamehameha, and I commanded the troops of I.
In 1840, Nalimu left Papaaloa and lived in Pi’opi’o, Hilo, until 1847.
At that time, Kamehameha began to give land to the makaainana.
In 1852, Nalimu entered into the Hilo Boarding School.
D. B. Lyman was the principal at the time, and it was he who built that college on land given by the alii for that school.
In 1857, Nalimu became the assistant kahu of the church of Hilo, under the old Missionary Coan [Koana, Titus Coan].
He accompanied Coan to the cliffs of Hilo, climbing up and going down into the rivers. There were no bridges and no good roads at the time. The walked the trails until Kalapana. The shoes they wore were ti-leaf sandals [kamaa la’i], and pandanus root sandals [kamaa aahala], so that their feet would not be harmed by the rocks.
The boundary from where they returned from Puna is when they reached the dirt, that is Kalanakamaa, it is a place blocked off now; some feet from the Hilo side is the gulch now seen at the edge of Kilauea Avenue, Hualalai Street, and Hanalei Lane.
When there was a lot of rain, the water came down from Upe-loa all the way down until below the pool of Kumu next to the waters of Waiolama. Mauka of the old road, and mauka of the current road, there is a single breadfruit tree on the Puna side, and it is there that sandals were hung. Kalanakamaa was the boundary of Waiakea.
Nalimu accompanied Coan to the Hawaii Island conferences, and the archipelago-wide conference here in Honolulu.
In 1871, Nalimu and his wife headed for the Gilbert Islands [Kilipaki].
He lived there for eleven years. Because of the weakness of his wife and child, he returned to Hawaii nei in 1882.
These days, the eyes of that old man are dim, his body is not very strong, but he is doing well.
His grandchildren take him on Sundays to the church of Rev. Baker at Kalihi Waena.
On his birthday, a party will be prepared by his grandchildren.
[H. B. Nalimu is famous for sharing his knowledge not only on old mele, but on traditional bird catching and fishing as well.]
(Alakai o Hawaii, 12/17/1931, p. 4)