Banyan trees planted by graduating class of Kamehameha School, 1894.

Presentation of the Kamehameha School.

On the 26th of June, that being a Tuesday, there was held a ceremony to erect a monument to the students graduating from the school, before a large audience. John S. Aea was who spoke about the reason the children planted banyan [baniana] trees, and after this was over, each child who is graduating [e hemo ana] planted his tree. After this was done, the audience was invited to go beneath the shade of the trees to partake of the light refreshments prepared , and that was the close of the activities of the day.

On June, 27, at 1:30, the school was once again filled with visitors, who wanted to see the crafts of the students. The visitors were nicely welcomed, and the children proceeded to perform the various skills they were taught, like blacksmithing [amara], wood turning [wililaau], typesetting [hoonohohua], tailoring [humuhumu lole], iron working [hana hao], and carpentry [kamana]. The students were agile at what they were taught. After the visitors were done with their touring of the various branches of what was taught the students, the doors of the museum were opened wide, and everything seen by the crowd was beautiful. At 3:30 was held speeches and singing by the students of the elementary school joined by the older students. It was fine and beautiful. At 4:30, there was drilling at the square below facing the school, under the leadership of their Major, Isaia Pahee, one of the students. The students were lively raising their feet, turning sharply, and so forth. This was the closure of the activities of the day and the audience was released.

On the following Thursday, speeches by the graduating students were held in Kawaiahao, and the church was packed full of visitors. The school will go on vacation for two months, and will start again in the month of September.

[Does anyone know if any of these banyans still stand today? According to an article appearing in the Hawaiian Gazette of 6/29/1894, p. 2, there was only one banyan planted.]

(Makaainana, 7/2/1894, p. 1)


Ka Makaainana, Buke II—-Ano Hou, Helu 1, Aoao 1. Iulai 2, 1894.

1 thought on “Banyan trees planted by graduating class of Kamehameha School, 1894.

  1. I think that it’s very unlikely that each graduating student planted a separate banyan tree. I don’t know that the Kamehameha campus ever had a grove of banyans on it, which this would have resulted in because there would have to have been at least 10 students in the class, yes? And probably more.

    Of course most of the original campus has been changed irrevocably, but I haven’t ever seen a photo of multiple banyans on it.

    I suspect that only one tree was planted, and it would be the immense banyan which still grows today just makai of Bishop Hall, the KS Boys’ School’s first classroom building, on the Bishop Museum grounds. Unfortunately the H-1 Freeway was constructed near this tree way back in 1959, so today it has to be cut back regularly so it doesn’t encroach on the freeway.

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