Early report on poi palaoa in California, 1859.

Poi Palaoa.

O Hae Hawaii;

I have some news to report and it will be for you to carry it around to the borders of the land from Hawaii to Niihau, so that the news is heard by our friends living in the countryside [kuaaina] and in the royal court [alo alii].

Here is the news: this is my ninth year of living here in California, and the Hawaiians in California desire poi greatly, but have no way to get it.

But we get poi from the flour that is made by the haole, and through the ingenuity of the Hawaiians who by thinking came up with that poi.

This is how you acquire the poi; get a pot that is two feet high and pour water into it half way and place on top the fire; when it boils, carry it aside and pour in flour into the pot; hold a stick in one hand and stir until firm then put back on the fire; keep doing this, and put back on the fire four or five times at which point the poi is cooked; pour into a bucket or in a barrel perhaps, and mix until smooth; when we eat poi palaoa it is truly delicious like taro poi of Hawaii. With appreciation, By M. NAHORA.

Coloma, El Dorado County,

California, February 12, 1859.

(Hae Hawaii, 3/16/1859, p. 199)

He Poi Palaoa.

Ka Hae Hawaii, Buke 3, Helu 50, Aoao 199. Maraki 16, 1859.

Poi made from wheat flour in Kalawao and Kalaupapa, 1879.

Poi Palaoa.

O Kuokoa Newspaper; Aloha oe:—

Here in the colony of the leprosy patients in Kalawao and Kalaupapa, flour is used to make poi [poi palaoa]; it is similar to poi made of breadfruit [poi ulu] in the yellow color, and it is truly delicious; it is a lot like taro poi [poi kalo]: your stomach doesn’t get sore, and you become full indeed; we have no poi because the taro won’t arrive to these Koolau cliffs because of the terrible weather during these months.

This new poi began at Iliopii, by a Hawaiian who lived in California who was used to making it there, and that is how he spread this new poi here; and the benefits of this poi is now known, and therefore, our poi problems are over during this stormy period, and should calm weather return, the patients will get their paʻi ʻai¹ [pai kalo].

Poi palaoa is very appropriate when working because you stay full, and it is fun to make when you get used to it, and so too with rice mixed with crackers and stirred up in a pot; when it boils and is cooked, it is time for to fill the stomach, and you will be always full.

The Superintendent of the Leprosy Patients.

In my observations, our Superintendent, Mr. N. B. Emerson [Emekona], M. D. is quick with filling the storehouse [hale papaa] with flour [palaoa], rice [raiki], crackers [barena], bags of sugar [eke kopaa], and salmon [kamano]; there is nothing to complain of Kapuukolu.²

Worship. Worship always happens now: Protestants [Hoole Pope], Mormons [Moremona], and Catholics [Katolika]; their meetings on Sundays are always full; life of the patients is peaceful now, not like before when Damien [Damiano] and when W. K. Sumner were Superintendent; there were uprisings from drinking okolehao and other alcoholic drinks made of ti, sweet potato [uala], and so forth.

Bell of the Church of Kalaupapa. On the 5th of Feb., the Bell arrived on the Warwick; a very fine bell which was a gift from the Sunday School of Kaukeano and the brethren of that church; and now it hangs proudly in its honored steeple with its ringing voice in the cliff faces of Kalaupapa, and it points out the movement of the hands of the clock, and the Sunday School of Kalaupapa fully appreciates the gift of the Sunday School of Kaukeano.

S. K. K. Kanohokula.

Kalaupapa, Feb. 18, 1879.

¹Although i tend not to use ʻokina and kahakō, i marked “pai ai” here for added clarity.

²Kapuukolu is a place on Kauai, figuratively used to represent abundance of good food.

(Kuokoa, 3/15/1879, p. 2)

Ka Poi Palaoa.

Ka Nupepa Kuokoa, Buke XVIII, Helu 11, Aoao 2. Maraki 15, 1879.