Hawaii at the Great London Exposition, 1862.

The Sandwich Islands.—During the last few days a stall has been fitted up near the department of the Ionian Islands which represents the latest and most distant echo in response to the invitation given to all nations and peoples to exhibit their natural and artificial products under the domes of South Kensington. The Hawaiian, or, as they are better known, the Sandwich Islands, were unrepresented in 1851, owing to the collection made there not reaching England till the Exhibition had finally closed, the voyage by a sailing vessel occupying five or six months. This year a similar fate threatened this remote group in the Pacific, and it seemed likely that the name of Hawaii would only be known in connexion with the International Exhibition of 1862 by a pair of silk banners in the nave, and a foreign commissioner with nothing to do. Continue reading

More on Lady Franklin and ahuula and upcoming events, 1861 / 2015–2016.

While in Hawaii in 1861, Lady Franklin enjoyed the company often of King Kamehameha IV and Queen Emma. According to newspaper reports, the relationship between them was very cordial. She was given this treasured ahuula in commemoration of this bond.

If you find yourself in San Francisco at the end of this summer until the early part of next year (8/29/2015–2/28/2016), do make your way to the de Young Museum:

Lady Franklin cape

Lady Franklin cape (detail) (#5948). ‘apapane feathers, ‘ō‘ō feathers. Bernice Pauahi Bishop Museum, Ethnology Collection, 09670/1909.007

Royal Hawaiian Featherwork: Nā Hulu Ali‘i

August 29, 2015February 28, 2016

Explore the distinctive art, culture, and history of Hawai‘i with the first exhibition of Hawaiian featherwork on the U.S. mainland, developed in partnership with the Bernice Pauahi Bishop Museum, Honolulu. Presented in San Francisco, which is considered to be the gateway to the Pacific, the exhibition will feature approximately 75 rare and stunning examples of the finest featherwork capes and cloaks in existence, as well as royal staffs of feathers (kāhili), feather lei (lei hulu manu), helmets (mahiole), feathered god images (akua hulu manu), and related eighteenth- and nineteenth-century paintings and works on paper. Continue reading →

Lady Jane Franklin in Hawaii nei, 1861.

[Found under: “NOTES OF THE WEEK.”]

A Memento of Hawaii.—We strolled into Mr. Lafrenz’s cabinet shop a day or two since, to see some specimens of domestic cabinet ware, recently made by him. They consisted of two chests, manufactured by order of Mr. Wyllie, out of our native woods, and are intended as presents from His Excellency to lady Franklin and her niece Miss Cracroft. The larger of the two is made of koa, edged with ebony wood. The lid is tastefully decorated with various kinds of wood, and in the center is a square of black ebony inlaid, in which are bronze and pearl designs, with a small silver-plate, on which is inscribed “Lady Franklin, Honolulu, 1861.” The inside of the chest is lined with sandal-wood, which emits a most fragrant and pleasant odor. The whole is finished with French polish, and as a specimen of art in these islands, and as a memento of her visit here and of the generous donor, will no doubt be highly prized by her ladyship. The second chest, intended for Miss Cracroft, is quite small, but finished in the same style. We give the varieties of wood used: koa, kauwila, kou, koala, sandal-wood and black ebony; all native woods, except the last, which is from Ascension Island. As a specimen of cabinet ware, we have no fear of its being surpassed by the native products of any other country that may undertake to rival it.

(Pacific Commercial Advertiser, 5/16/1861, p. 2)

A Memento of Hawaii.

The Pacific Commercial Advertiser, Volume V, Number 46, Page 2. Mei 16, 1861.