Treasures spread across the four corners of the earth? 1906.

Auction Sale

Tourists! Collectors!

Thursday, Feb. 1, 1906,

10 O’CLOCK A. M.,

At my salesroom, 847 Kaahumanu Street, I will sell, under instruction from the Administrators of the Estate of


the eminent Hawaiian collector, the following ancient and other relics of

Ancient Chiefs

Pig Platters,


Cocos (Calabash Nets),


Stone Adzes,

Stone Lamps,

Mike Stones,

Poi Pounders,

49 Fans,

2 Kauila Aumakuas (War Spears),

2 Hula Drums (Ancient),

1 Idol—Kukaili-iki—One of Kamehameha’s War Gods,

1 Ipu Hula (Gourd Drum),

1 Pawehe Calabash,

1 Pawehe Water Bottle,

1 Newa (War Club),

2 Bamboo Cushions,

1 Hinai Opae,

2 Samoan War Clubs,

1 Koko (Ancient),

1 Black Kapa (Burial),

1 Lauhala Hall Mat,

7 Samoan Cocoanut Bowls,

1 Lauhala Bag,

1 Case Stuffed Hawaiian Birds,

1 Aumakua,

1 Kauila Kahili Stick,

1 Kahili Stick (Tortoise) and Ivory (Ancient),

2 Emu Eggs,

1 Carved Coco Bank,

1 Large Show Case,

4 Lei Hulus (Native Birds),

1 Samoan War Club,

1 Moss Album.



(Pacific Commercial Advertiser, 1/29/1906, p. 8)

Auction Sale

The Pacific Commercial Advertiser, XLIII, Number 7324, Page 8. January 29, 1906.

Hawaiian returns home to Hilo after living in Boston for 50 years, 1917.


In the morning of last Friday, the steamship Matsonia docked in Hilo nei, and aboard the ship was Mr. Benjamin Keolaokalani Pitman [Pittman], the brother of the recently deceased Mrs. Mary Ailau. He left left Hilo when he was 10 years old, and went back with his father to the city of Boston, and he has lived there for a full 50 years, and this is the first time he has returned to see the place where he was born.

He is a direct cousin to George Mooheau Beckley, as their mothers were sisters; Kinoole is Mr. Pitman’s mother, and Kahinu is George C. Beckley’s. The two of them were daughters of the Alii Hoolulu who hid the bones of Kamehameha Ka Na’i Aupuni. He [Pittman] went with his people on a tour to see the fire of the enchanting woman of the pit, and on their return, they were entertained at the home of Mrs. Maraea Wilipaona [? Mrs. Maria Wilfong], and Mrs. J. D. Lewis and Mrs. Wilfong put on a luau to honor this Hawaiian Alii. On this trip of his to his homeland, accompanying him were his wife and some friends from Boston. On Saturday evening, he and his wife left for Honolulu, and from their they will return to his home in Boston. He is now a Millionaire living in Boston.

[Unfortunately, the digital images of the Hoku o Hawaii newspaper are only available online from 5/31/1917, and so the issue in which this story appears is not available yet (along with the ten years of newspapers that come before it).]

(Hoku o Hawaii, 2/8/1917, p. 2)


Ka Hoku o Hawaii, Buke 11, Helu 37, Aoao 2.

Peleioholani’s home is destroyed by fire, 1901.



Valuable Feather Cloak In Peleioholani’s Fire Claim.



While Husband and Wife Were Shut Out By Quarantine the Flames Swept Away Their Home.

Claims of native Hawaiians were resumed before the Fire Claims Commission yesterday morning. Two of these were called this morning, one of which is of more than ordinary interest.

S. L. Peleioholani presents a claim for $2000 and it appears to be a perfectly straight one. The claimant is a lineal descendant of high chiefs and among his household possessions were heirlooms of great value. Indeed, it is scarcely practicable to measure their value in money, the articles having both historical and ethnological—it might be added without joking, ornithological—interest.

Of the last-named class was a feather cloak, the only one existing of its class except the famous garment of Kamehameha treasured in the British Museum. This cloak descended to Peleioholani from his great-great-grandfather, Keeaumoku, a high chief whose name is given to one of the streets of Honolulu. Evidence was presented before the Commission showing that the claimant refused $500 from Mrs. Marry Ailau, the well-known dealer and connoisseur in Hawaiian relics, several years ago. Yes, and when she sent a relative to further sound the owner on his selling figure an offer of $700 for the cloak was declined by him.

Peleioholani had also a few calabashes of high value, besides other ancient objects of native art.

Why did not Mr. Peleoholani or his wife rescue all this archaeological wealth from the advancing flames? It is an easy question and its answer is not mysterious. The husband was working at his trade of a carpenter on the Castle house, while his wife was away from home on some errand, when the rigid quarantine came down suddenly as a Pali cloud. In consequence the couple could not gain access to their home and the tempest of flame came and swept it away.

Peleioholani lost sundry articles of latter day manufacture and utility, which went to make up his claim. An item was sixty fathoms of inch and a half rope at $47, this being the price he paid for it at an auction sale. He explained that he used the hawser in connection with building and house-moving operations. Scion of a noble house as he is, Peleioholani gave the Commissioners the impression of an honorable man.

[See what was said in an article from one of the Hawaiian-Language Newspapers here.]

(Evening Bulletin, 10/15/1901, p. 1)


Evening Bulletin, Volume XI, Number 1968, Page 1. October 15, 1901.

Ahuula and priceless treasures gone up in smoke, 1901.


This Possession Belonged to Keaumoku.

S. L. Peleiholani claims $500 in damages
for this Feather Cloak.

Before the fire inspection Commissioner, seen was the relationship of S. L. Peleiholani to Kamehameha I, the conqueror of the nation [Ka Naʻi Aupuni], and also seen was the destruction of a very valuable ahuula in the bubonic fire. Peleiholani claimed $500 damages for this ahuula, and he said that he was urged to sell the ahuula for $1,000, which he absolutely refused to do. This is an ahuula that was cared for by his grandparents on down to him, and for this reason, he refused money which kept appearing before him until the cloak was consumed by fire.

Peleioholani added a claim of $2,140.05, and the majority of the assets were inherited from his kupuna. He is the child of Peleiholani and Pukeau. His grandfather was a child of Kalanuilumoku [Kalaniulumoku], a grandchild of Kamehameha I. His grandfather married Kahana, a daughter of Keaumoku, the one to whom belonged this ahuula. This Keaumoku was a high chief, and an minister [kuhina] of Kamehameha I, and he received may greatly valuable gifts from the conqueror of the nation. Peleiholani cared for this ahuula for a long time, and showed it to the many people who came before him to buy this cloak. The sum of money desired to offer him reached a thousand, and some ministers of Kalakaua came before him wanting the ahuula for the King. He refused all of these urging, and said to them that there was no way money could buy this ahuula while he was alive. Some men came from the alii Kalakaua bringing wine and money and put it at his side, intending to get him to drink until drunk when he would agree to giving this ahuula to the alii, however they left without.

There is but one other ahuula like it, and that is the ahuula cared for in the Kamehameha Museum [Bernice Pauahi Bishop Museum]. When people ask for the actual monetary value of that ahuula, they say Peleiholani’s claim is right, but the actual truth is that the true value of this ahuula reaches $2,000. Mrs. Mary Ailau was a witness called to testify as to the truth of the claim, and according to her testimony, it was correct; and she went before this man many a time and urged him to sell to her this ahuula for $500 and her request was refused. She felt that the true value of the ahuula reached all the way to two thousand dollars. When she was asked if the ahuula was auctioned off, how much would she offer, Mrs. Ailau answered that she would bid as much as one thousand dollars, and if she had a lot of money, she would bid up to two thousand dollars for this ahuula.

In this claim by Peleiholani, it is seen the great amount of valuable antiquities he was caring for and that was destroyed in the bubonic fires. If these treasures were not burned in the fire, and they were bought off of him, he would have gained a large amount of money. This is an example to we Hawaiians, showing the great value of some antiquities which we are just selling off or discarding. Take care of them and find out their value before throwing them away.

[I am guessing not only were there priceless objects in Peleioholani’s collection, but also manuscripts, as he is well known for his writings!]

(Kuokoa, 10/18/1901, p. 6)


Ka Nupepa Kuokoa, Buke XXXIX, Helu 16, Aoao 6. Okatoba 18, 1901.