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’s history if you did?
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 learn of the history of the Hawaiʻiʻs government.
In the ahupuaʻa of Wailuku, which lies in the moku of Pūʻali Komohana on the island of Maui, stands a street given the name that means government, kingdom, or nation.
We are talking about Aupuni St.
Prior to the establishment of the Hawaiian Kingdom, ruling chiefs battled for land and power.
It wasn’t until a warrior named Kamehameha fulfilled his prophecy in 1810 by uniting all the islands under one rule.
This created a monarchial government that lasted for 83 years, evolving from an absolute to a constitutional one.
But in 1893, by the works of American and European businessmen, Hawaiʻi’s last ruling monarch, Queen Liliʻuokalani, was illegally overthrown, imprisoned, and her monarchy replaced by a provisional government.
A year later, Hawaiʻi became the Republic of Hawaiʻi with the expectation of being annexed by the United States.
Then-President Grover Cleveland, however, opposed this move and even unsuccessfully tried to reinstate the Queen.
But when William McKinley succeeded Cleveland, he was in support of the US’s annexation of Hawaiʻi.
This eventually took place in 1898, leading the islands into a US Territory.
Hawaiʻi remained as such until it became the 50th state in 1959.
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But to many, the Hawaiian sovereignty was never relinquished, and the Kingdom still exists.
Did you know? Now you do!