HONOLULU (KHON2) – We all make use of our island roadways, but when was the last time you paid attention to their given names? 

Did you know you could learn more about Hawaiʻi and our history if you did? 

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Our weekly “Aloha Authentic” segment highlights various streets across the islands so we can dig into those names, and in turn, learn something new. 

This week, we bring attention to the beginning of the Hawaiian Kingdom.

In the ahupuaʻa of Keopū, which lies in the moku of Kona on the island of Hawaiʻi, stands a popular roadway whose name translates as “chief, ruler, or monarch.” 

We are talking about Aliʻi Dr.

Aliʻi Drive in Kona carries a very significant name, bringing attention to the many chiefs who once called that area home.

But arguably the most significant name attached to that street is King Kamehameha the Great.

Once having his residence on the grounds of where Huliheʻe Palace now stands on AliʻDrive, King Kamehameha is credited as the aliʻwho had brought all the Hawaiian Islands under a single rule, which became the Hawaiian Kingdom.

When the Kingdom was solidified in 1810, the seat of political power was located in Waikīkī on Oʻahu. 

A few years later, King Kamehameha moved his capital and personal residence back to Kona where his life came to a close. 

In 1820, one year following his passing, the Kingdom’s capital moved to Lāhainā, Maui and remained there for 25 years.

In 1845, the center of the Kingdom relocated once more back to Oʻahu in Honolulu. 

Following the illegal overthrow of the Hawaiian Kingdom, ʻIolani Palace converted into the government’s executive building.

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But once the Hawaiʻi State Capital was completed in 1969, it has been the seat of Hawaiʻi’s political power ever since.

Did you know? Now you do!