Famous singer, John Sumner Ellis, passes on, 1914.

VOICE OF SINGER FOREVER STILLED

John Sumner Ellis, Who Made Hawaiian Melody Popular on Mainland, Called by Death.

(From Thursday Advertiser.)

Following an illness of nine months, John Sumner Ellis, known as Hawaii’s premier tenor singer, died Tuesday afternoon shortly before five o’clock at the home of Deputy County Clerk Eugene D. Buffandeau, 1205 Alexander street, his brother-in-law.

Ellis was a victim of tuberculosis, which he contracted in the East. He…

JOHN SUMNER ELLIS

…returned to Honolulu three weeks ago with the avowed intention of seeing his beloved island home before he passed away. His wish was gratified to the extent that he died in his native land, surrounded by the friends of his boyhood.

The funeral will take place at ten o’clock this morning from the undertaking parlors of H. H. Williams, Fort street. Ellis’ remains will be buried in the family plot in Nuuanu cemetery.

Ellis was born in Honolulu on April 11, 1877, and would have been thirty-seven years of age on April 11 of this year had he lived. He was the son of the late Charles K. Ellis, who was at one time connected with the old Honolulu Iron Works, and Nancy Sumner Ellis, and a grand nephew of John Sumner, Honolulu’s well known pioneer.

Mourning his loss and surviving him are his wife, who was Mrs. May Barnard, and who married him in Chicago in 1909; his six-year old stepdaughter; William Sumner Ellis, a brother, and also a well known singer who resided now in New York, and Mrs. Victoria Buffandeau, of Honolulu, a sister. He also leaves a fourteen-year-old son who resides in San Francisco with his mother, Ellis’ divorced wife. Willie Davis, of Honolulu, is a cousin of the deceased.

John Sumner Ellis was educated in St. Louis College of this city, where he early made a mark as a singer. He was a member of the college band and after leaving school joined the Royal Hawaiian Band under Capt. Henri Berger. Ellis will be remembered as one of the foremost players with the Maile football eleven in the nineties.

Ellis was a member of Ernest Kaai’s well known musical organization when it first started out. He left the Islands on May 30, 1905, almost nine years ago, with “Sonny” Cunha’s Hawaiian quintet for a tour of the mainland. When this organization returned to Honolulu Ellis remained on the mainland, singing in vaudeville in the East. He was employed for a long time by the Hawaii Promotion Committee. He sang in grand opera shortly before being attacked with the disease which finally put an untimely end to his promising career.

He was possessed of an unusually sweet tenor voice wherever on the mainland he sang Hawaii’s plaintive airs he immediately became a favorite. Ellis was instrumental, probably more so than any other Hawaiian singer, in popularizing Hawaiian melodies on the mainland and especially in the east. He was attractive in appearance, well mannered and readily made lasting friends. With his passing away Hawaii has lost a son who was a credit to her, both at home and abroad.

(Hawaiian Gazette, 2/27/1914, p. 5)

VOICE OF SINGER FOREVER STILLED

Hawaiian Gazette, Volume VII, Number 17, Page 5. February 27, 1914.

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Aberahama Kaikioewa Palekaluhi passes away, 1912.

THAT HIGH CHIEF OF THE LAND HAS GONE.

At his residence in Kalihi, on this past Tuesday morning, A. K. Palekaluhi, one of the high chiefs of this land grew weary of this life, at 81 years of age.

A. K. Palekaluhi, who died, was a high chief, as he was a son of Liliha, a high chiefess, a descendant of Kamehameha Nui, the King of the Island of Maui. On this morning, there will be a funeral over his body from the mortuary of H. H. Williams under the administration of the Catholic faith.

While Palekaluhi was living, he always carried with him a pocket watch given to him as a present by a kaukau alii; the amazing thing about that watch was that the initials and letters of his name were the hours in place of the Roman numerals you normally see on all watches. During his youth, he had much power in politics. Greatly loved is that native chief!

[Notice how this has much more information than just what was given in the Vital Statistics column in the same issue of Kuokoa.]

(Kuokoa, 5/31/1912, p. 4)

HALA IA ALII KIEKIE O KA AINA

Ka Nupepa Kuokoa, Buke XLVIII, Helu 22, Aoao 4. Mei 31, 1912.