No fooling in Lahaina a hundred years ago, 1916.


Mr. Sol Hanohano, Aloha oe:—Please allow me some open space on the wings of  the seagull of ours, so the words above have somewhere to nest.

While everyone was sitting around in the shade of the ulu grove of Lele, enjoying the softly blowing Ma-aa breeze, the local wind of the land, the people were surprised to see a notice put up: “Band concert tomorrow afternoon at 3 o’clock p.m. The Lahaina Public Band will give a public concert under the banyan tree, court house grounds. All welcome! Come one! Come all!”

And being that it was on the 1st of April that this announcement was seen, and the words said that it was the following day at 3 o’clock p.m. that the band would play, Apr. 2, 1916, the announcement was not reliable, because it was the 1st of April, maybe the intent of that announcement is an April Fool; so when going to the place directed, you would find something like the kids saying, “Go to school, tell your teacher you’re a fool,” but for this,  “Go to courthouse grounds, and call yourself you’re a fool!”

But these guesses were put aside until the prescribed time was at hand, and the band members were indeed seen seated in the place made ready for them. And for the first time, the realization came that this was not an April fool.

When the clock struck 3 o’clock, we saw Lowell Kupau bow and as he rose up he was holding his instrument, and with a wink of an eye, the voice of the band burst forth. It was just so lovely! it was a beauty that could not be faulted for they were only taught for a very short few days. The songs played were “Kaua i ka la i pohina,” “Silver Threads Amongst the Gold,” “Maui Beauty me Roselani,” composed by William J. Coelho. “Maui no ka oi,” composed by Rev. S. Kapu, “Mai poina oe ia’u,” and “Aloha oe.” “Hawaii Ponoi.”

After the first song, or perhaps the second, we saw two regiments of the soldiers of Company E coming up, and when they came close to the grounds where the band was playing, the director of the band turned and gave a song fit for marching, filling our hearts with happiness at the truly adept and quick brand new band boys under the efforts of their bandmaster Lowell K. Kupau.

There was a large crowd not seen before of all ethnicities, of men and women and children, who gathered there; the manager of the sugarcane plantation of Lahaina was there also with his queen, and we saw the two of them give their appreciation to the band by their applause, and he removed his hat after each song performed by the boys of the band.

Being that the association of Mormons is staying in Lahaina, the members also came, some from Honokohau, Honolua, Honokahua, Kaanapali, Olowalu, Maalaea, Waikapu, Wailuku and perhaps some from Kula.

At the end of the program in the afternoon at 4:15 p.m., the band was something for the kamaaina to talk much about, until the band was directed to play once again in Halealoha for the speech of the Puuwai Hoola [???], and there the ability of the bandmaster was shown, for the band played along with the big organ, and everyone sang with the band so sweetly; nothing like it was seen in Lahaina before.

When I learned about this bandmaster, it seems that he was a youth from the Royal Hawaiian Band, and as for me I did not know him at all, so I took this opportunity to give him my congratulations before all.

For the delight of everyone on this past April 2nd, the influential people of Lahaina joined in to establish the aforementioned band on the foundation: Manager of the Sugarcane Plantation of Lahaina Weinzheimer, president; John Pierce, vice president; J. M. Ambrose, secretary; F. Luukia, treasurer; Major W. Huffman Young, auditor; A. D. Furtado, George Freeland, and Charles K. Farden are the member of the executive committee.

At the meeting held, Lowell K. Kupau was chosen as the bandmaster of this new band of Lahaina.

With aloha,


(Kuokoa, 4/21/1916, p. 5)


Ka Nupepa Kuokoa, Buke LIV, Helu 16, Aoao 5. Aperila 21, 1916.

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