We had the pleasure of attending the public examination of Ahuimanu College last Wednesday, July 5. The location of the College is healthy and romantic, being situated on a plain at the foot of the mountains, and commanding a fine view of the ocean to the north and of the mountain range east and west.
The institution is under the charge of the Rev. Father Lievin, who is distinguished for his affability and kindness as much as for his many scholarly attainments. He has made improvements in the grounds and buildings during the past year: notably, in the students’ dormitory, each one having to himself a latticed apartment opening on a long corridor, all freely ventilated. The students are, even during the night, under his immediate supervision.
We were much pleased with the correct spelling and distinct reading of the primary classes. Young native boys who, a year ago, could not speak a word of English, read fluently and with a very good pronunciation. It occurred to us to ask ourselves how we could read French or German, after only one year’s study.
The examination of the classes in Grammar, Geography, Arithmetic, History, and Elementary Astronomy, was conducted by the President, and after him by the visitors. The questions asked by the latter were not the routine ones of textbooks. They were intended to draw forth the real knowledge of the students. This rather severe examination showed a proficiency in the various branches that is truly commendable. Our expectations were surpassed at the knowledge of English Grammar and Analysis evinced by that class. The study of Music and Oratory seems to be pursued con amore. The spcimens of Penmanship showed a marked improvement—those of the last and present year being side by side. It is only just to mention the Joseph Poepoe, Victor Kapule, Eddy Morgan, John K. Loio, Zachariah Kapule, and John Spencer, were the most distinguished in their several departments.
We learned that the school year commences on the 20th of August, and ends about the 4th of July. The fees for board, lodging and tuition are from $60 to $100 per year; some poor boys are received gratis. These figures are so low that the institution can not be self-sustaining. Bishop Maigret gives $300 a year towards its support. We hope that it will prosper, and continue to extend its usefulness.
(Hawaiian Gazette, 7/12/1871, p. 2)