Continuation of Piilani’s story, 1916.

The Story of Piilani

(Continued from last week.)

Several days later they got the news that Mr. Stolz and some policemen all armed with revolvers and guns had arrived to get the lepers and particularly to capture Koolau. When Koolau heard this he said: “It may be their idea, but the man who tries to do that will do so at the peril of his life.”

This word was brought to Stolz, and he sent the word back that Koolau would repent it if he refused to obey the orders of the authorities. Koolau took his gun, kissed it and held it to his breast and talked to the gun as if it was a friend and charged it to stand by him and shoot straight, and from that time Koolau kept guard and shortly afterwards they saw a ten being put up on the beach, and he thought it was to watch him and some of his friends went down to find out for him.

One day Koolau, Piilani and the child went makai on the path by the stream, and there they found Mr. Stolz’s raincoat with some crackers in the pocket, also a blanket, and Koolau told Piilani to take these things along with her. Shortly afterwards they met Penikala, a policeman from Waimea, and Koolau asked him, where Louis Stoltz was, and Penikala said, he did not know, but thought that Louis Stoltz had gone to Hanalei. A little later they met Peter Nowlein, a policeman from Hanalei, and Nowlein told them that Louis Stoltz had gone further up the valley to catch Koolau by surprise. Koolau and family kept going till they reached Kaumeheiwa’s house and found there a lot of their friends. Koolau told them that he was in search of Louis Stoltz and if they were afraid told them to go somewhere else. Penikila was there and Koolau upbraided him for telling a falsehood and told him he ought to be shot, but told him he would forgive him, as he was after Louis Stoltz only. The most of the people went further down towards the beach.

In the evening of the following day Koolau came out of the house, in which he was hiding together with Piilani and two young fellows by the names of Iwa and Kala, who had been staying in the house. Koolau and Piilani sat down on some stones near the house and were watching. It was bright moon-light. Between nine and ten that night Koolau heard a noise and said:

“Here comes the haole. I can hear it is his foot-steps. Here are two of them.” Koolau kissed his wife and said: “May be we never meet again.”

Kala and Iwa ran out of the house and Louis Stoltz sang out: “Kala, do not move, look out, you are liable to be shot.” And they heard a gun being cocked. Shortly afterwards they saw the shadows of two men.

Koolau pushed Piilani behind him and then Koolau shot. By the flare of the light she saw who was Stoltz’s partner. It was a man by the name of Paoa, one of the lepers, that Stoltz had caught in the mountains. When Koolau shot, Paoa ran over to Stoltz, and Koolau told him to look if Stoltz was dead. Koolau then asked Piilani to go and look, and when she got to Stoltz, she saw him on his knees, and Paoa shouted “shoot.” Koolau shot his second shot, and that killed Stoltz. Koolau turned to Piilani and said: “It was a question, who was to die first, Louis Stoltz or I.” Piilani said: “That is so, if Paoa had not called out shoot, you would probably gotten the worst of it, as Stoltz had his gun cocked.” This happened on June 27th 1893.

After this Koolau told the people that he had killed Stoltz. A man by the name of Wahinealoha was the first to come to the place where Louis was lying dead, later came Penikila. Koolau, Piilani, Penikila and Wahinealoha lifted Stoltz’s body up on the lanai of the House. When it became known that Stoltz was dead, Kaumeheiwa got his canoe and rowed to Mana. Some time in the small hours of the morning Kaumeheiwa arrived at Mr. Faye’s residence at Mana and told him the startling news. Mr. Faye telephone Mr. George N. Wilcox, who was at the time the acting sheriff of Kauai.

An uncanny thing happened by Kaumeheiwa going to Mr. Faye and telling him about Mr. Stoltz’s death. When Louis Stoltz started on his last trip to Kalalau, he called on Faye on his way to Polihale, and Mr. Faye told him to be careful, as Koolau was not a man to be fooled with and reminded him of the fact that Koolau was a famous hunter and marksman. Stoltz expressed the belief that Koolau would never carry out his threat, “but” said Stoltz “if he kills me, I will send my ghost to tell you.” When Kaumeheiwa came to Mr. Faye’s place in the night, the dogs made a terrible noise, and Faye got up to find out the cause for all the barking and he heard a voice saying: “E Paea, ua make o Lui.” (Faye, Louis is dead.) On account of the cloudiness of the sky Faye could not see anybody at the place under the tree from whee the voice came, so it sounded like Stoltz was carrying out his promise.

The following morning Koolau said to Piilani: “My work is done, we will now go to the mountains and wait for the end.” And they started with their child followed by Paoa and others. When they had gotten high up in the valley, they saw the steamer “Waialeale” coming from the Hanalei side. The steamer came to get Stoltz’s body. After the steamer had left, Koolau and his family went down makai and stayed with friends. One day Paoa met a friend from the beach, and he told him that the steamer “Iwalani” was coming with police, soldiers and implements of war to take Koolau. Some of the people wanted to go with Koolau, but he told them to go makai and to the lepers to give themselves up to the authorities, and he also told Piilani and the child to go makai with the others, but she utterly refused to leave him. They then went to the cave in a ledge in the pali of Kalalau called Waimakemake, where there is a straight precipice above and a perpendicular bluff below. The ledge was covered with vegetation on both sides of the cave.

On the following day they heard people speaking English and they also saw the soldiers burning some of the houses, and started to shoot at the pali, but the soldiers evidently had no definite idea of Koolau’s hiding place.

They stayed quiet in the cave, which gave good protection. After a while Piilani saw Koolau pointing at something, and when she looked she saw a white man with a red undershirt near the opening of their cave. Koolau shot him and she saw him fall down the pali and heard the retreating of others. Koolau kept watch all that night.

The next day the shooting continued and Koolau told Piilani, that they would put on their good clothes, so they be decently dressed, when they be killed, which they expected on that day, and Koolau even suggested to shoot his wife and child and afterwards commit suicide to escape being caught. On that day Koolau shot another soldier, who had climbed near his hiding place.

The fellows below were continually shooting and stones and dirt were flying at the opening of their cave. They had no water or anything to eat and suffered greatly from hunger and thirst, particularly was the child in evident agony. They had nothing to eat or drink for four days and decided to move that night. In the night they crawled down the pali to the bottom of the valley to the stream and first had a good drink and then crossed the river. The current was strong and on the slippery stones they had a hard time to get over. At daybreak they came to Kelau’s house and Koolau told Piilani and the child to stay there, while he went to the house of some friend for some food.

(Concluded in next issue.)

(Garden Island, 12/26/1916, p. 4)


The Garden Island, Volume 12, Number 52, Page 4. December 26, 1916.

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