Temperance Advocate and Seamen’s Friend, 1843–1954.

The Friend

Rev. Samuel Chenery Damon was sent by the American Seamen’s Friend Society to be chaplain in Honolulu. The Damons sailed from New York March 10, 1842 aboard the Victoria, Captain Spring, and arrived in Honolulu October 19, 1842. He was the pastor of the Bethel Union Church, Seamen’s Chapel for 42 years and was the publisher and editor of the periodical The Friend from 1843 — 1885, when he retired.

The first issue was published in Jan. 1843, originally under the name Temperance Advocate, then as Temperance Advocate and Seamen’s Friend, with the Advocate and Friend being published as an extra, then as The Friend of Temperance and Seamen, with The Friend as an extra, and finally simply as The Friend, beginning January 1, 1845.

From 1885 through 1887, it was co-edited by the Revs. Cruzan and Oggel. The editorship then passed to Rev. Sereno Bishop, who held the post until the publication of the paper fell under the auspices of the Board of the Hawaiian Evangelical Association in April of 1902 where it remained until June 1954. Since then, it has continued in a different format under the Hawaii Conference-United Church of Christ up to the present day, making it the oldest existing newspaper in the Pacific.

The Friend began as a monthly newspaper for seamen, which included news from both American and English newspapers, and gradually expanded to adding announcements of upcoming events, reprints of sermons, poetry, local news, editorials, ship arrivals and departures and a listing of marriages and deaths. Rev. Damon published between a half million and a million copies of The Friend, most of which he personally distributed.

Because of its longevity, The Friend is an excellent resource for scholars of nineteenth-century Hawaiian history.

This collection contains 1,396 issues comprising 21,030 pages and 50,904 articles.

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La Hoihoi Ea, 1843.

THE RESTORATION.

This day, July thirty first, one thousand eight hundred and forty-three, will hereafter be referred to, as memorable in the history of the Sandwich Islands Government. The existence of the Government has often been threatened, but it has been most signally preserved. It is easy to trace the superintending Providence of God in every stage of its advancement. Many months since persons acquainted with its condition were fully aware that a most important crisis was approaching. It was seen that if the nation continued independent favorable influences must be exerted on the other side of the world. While the most amicable negotiations were going forward, an English Man of War anchors in this harbor. Immediate hostile action was threatened unless the Government yielded to certain demands. Those having been acceded to, others more exhorbitant were forth coming. The King finding himself involved in difficulties, which were not of his own making, under a reservation most reluctantly made a Provisional Cession of his dominions to the Queen of England.

He signed the treaty of cession while bathed in tears. At 3 oʻclock, P. M. Feb. 25, 1843, the National Flag was taken down, while that of England was raised. Never shall we forget the day. To the native population and a majority of the Foreign Residents of all nations, it was a day of sadness. They knew not as their eyes would ever again behold the Flag of Kamehameha III., waving over his rightful dominions. Whoever shall write an accurate history of the period which has since elpased must draw some dark shades to the picture.

The arrival of H. M. S. Dublin, and the negotiations which have taken place between the Admiral and the King, present affairs in a different aspect, which to most in this community is as unexpected as joyful.

The King is to receive a full restoration of his rights, privileges and and dominions. This morning, a public recognition of this restoration will take place. At 10 oʻclock, A. M., His Majesty Kamehameha III., will appear upon the plain East of the town. His standard will be unfurled under a general salute; which being finished, the National Flag will be displayed on both Forts, and be saluted by H. B. M. Ships with 21 guns each, which will be answered from the Forts. At one oʻclock, public religious services will be held in the Stone Church. At three oʻclock, His Majesty will embark to visit Richard Thomas, Rear Admiral of the White, H. B. M. Ship Dublin.

If reports are true, there will be other salutes and exhibitions of public joy! No doubt many hearty wishes and fervent prayers will be uttered for the prosperity of the King, and the welfare of the Government. To the latest generation may a lineal and worthy successor of His Majesty Kamehameha III., sit upon the throne of his ancestors. All genuine lovers of the Sandwich Islands Government, here and throughout the world, will cherish in grateful recollection the memory of Rear Admiral THOMASʻ timely interferance and noble deeds in behalf of a feeble, but well disposed people, who are struggling amid many hindrances to preserve their National Independence.

[This is from a special edition of the Advocate and Friend published on the very day of the restoration. The rest of the coverage can be seen here on the Mission Houses Museum page! Mahalo to Dwight Baldwin (descendant of the Temperance Advocate, and Seamenʻs Friend editor Samuel C. Damon) via Nathan Napoka for reminding me that there are indeed Hawaii newspapers other than Hawaiian-Language Newspapers.]

(Advocate and Friend, 7/31/1843, p. 38)

THE RESTORATION.

Advocate and Friend. (Extra). July 31, 1843, p. 38.

The Kings of Hawaii, 1876.

This is from an issue of “The Friend,” which includes a short biography in English of the ruling monarchs of Hawaii nei, written by S. C. Damon. As for this page of illustrations, they say:

The illustrations accompanying this number of the Friend we could wish were better executed. The plate was made in New York, from the best photographs we could procure in Honolulu. The original of Kamehameha 1st was executed in 1817 by a Russian artist, who accompanied Kotzebue in his voyage, and may be seen by referring to the third volume of his voyage. The original of Kamehameha 2d was executed in England in 1824, in the style of the dress of George 4th’s reign. We think those of Kamehameha 3d, 4th and 5th are very good, but not quite so good those of Lunalilo or His Majesty Kalakaua.

[For the biographies, find them here: The Friend, February 1, 1876.

Although it is clunky to maneuver, most of this series of news letters is available from the Mission Houses Museum here: The Friend.]

(Friend, 2/1/1876, pp. 9–13)

[Monarchs]

The Friend, New Series, Volume 25, Number 2, Page unnumbered. February 1, 1876.