Hauoli La Hanau e H. M. King Kamehameha III Kauikeaouli!
Idealist, Brilliant Negotiator, Educator, & Modernising Force, H. M. King Kamehameha III Keaweaweula Kiwalao Kauikeaouli Kaleiopapa Kalani Waiakua Kalanikau Iokikilo Kiwalao i ke kapu Kamehameha was born on March 17th, 1814.
H.M. King Kamehameha III Kauikeaouli’s early years were a mixing of cultures, religions, and historic changes. From one spring would be the deep heritage of Hawaii, from another the puritanical Christian missionaries who gained a political foothold on Hawaii; the mixing of such waters seems to have made him the stronger for it.
Our king faced and inherited many political challenges throughout his nearly 30 year reign. Hiram Bingham, H.M. Queen Kaahumanu’s Protestant missionary advisor convinced her to make Catholicism illegal. The law now banished all catholic missionaries; it also legalised imprisonment and torture conversion of Catholics. This led to the Laplace Affair. The French Government sent their frigate the Artémise to force H.M. King Kamehameha III Kauikeaouli to stop the mistreatment of Catholics. He himself had been amenable to the return of Catholic missionaries prior but the ‘French Incident’ forced him to create the Edict of Tolerance, giving Catholics religious freedom.
He then made sure this religious freedom was extended and instituted in our first Constitution. His reign‘s milestones are honestly too many to count. He skilfully and patiently out manoeuvred Lord Paulet, who held Hawaii hostage with no authority from the British Government, in 1843. To England’s credit, they backed and supported H.M. King Kamehameha III Kauikeaouli and our country in restoring our freedom after that incident. Our king’s impassioned speech to all who watched on as he and Rear-Admiral Thomas signed the documents are partially seen everywhere still in our country: Ua mau ke ea o ka aina i ka pono; The sovereignty of our nation is perpetuated through righteous action.
The ambassadors and emissaries he sent overseas, worked tirelessly and with immense political acumen to get the Anglo-Franco Proclamation signed. In it, other prominent countries acknowledged Hawaii’s independence. This, of course, was the basis for one of our most beloved holidays, La Kuokoa! Our La Kuokoa/Independence Day first celebrated on November 28th, 1843, continues even now in spite of our prolonged illegal U.S. Occupation.
H.M. King Kamehameha III Kauikeaouli’s reign modernised and forever changed our country. He instituted a constitutional monarchy, created the Great Mahele, created clearer laws and the court system, created compulsory education for all subjects of the highest level, sent emissaries and ambassadors to countries worldwide, and presided over the creation of our national postal system.
We want to be the first to admit that this is nowhere near close enough to even be a short biography. Our king faced down so much in his reign that it boggles the mind. Our hope is to have enough support and funding to really devote the time and resources that it would take to really bring as much of his life together for our Citizens and the World to appreciate.
Our country and citizens deserve a calendar that celebrates our Nation and its diverse beauty. In 2019, we will be sharing many more significant dates that we hope will be representative of who we are as a Nation. If we miss something please forgive us as this is a work in progress!
*H.M. King Kamehameha III Kauikeaouli’s birthday is on the same day as 2 other royal birthdays, all of which fell on a Sunday in 2019. That is why we are sharing informative biography posts throughout the week so no one is overlooked. These should rightfully be marked as National Holidays. As such, most National Holidays so close to a work day would be declared a day off or part of a long holiday.*