Photograph: H.M. King Kamehameha III Kauikeaouli (left), H.M. Queen Kalama (right) and baby H.R.H. Prince Albert Kunuiakea in her lap. Photo used in newspaper article clipping was from H.R.H. Prince Albert Kunuiakea’s home.

Hauoli La Hanau e H. M. Queen Kalama!

Queen Dowager, Forward thinking, Land savvy, and Ohana focused, H. M. Queen Kalama Hakaleleponi Kapakuhaili was born on March 17th, 1817.

H.M. Queen Kalama was the firm and incredibly intelligent companion of H.M. King Kamehameha III Kauikeaouli. Theirs was no arranged or approved union. Many chiefs and H.M. Queen Kaahumanu disapproved our king’s choice, according to missionary Hiram Bingham, “to one much below his rank, which it was apprehended might disturb the succession” of the king’s line.

Our queen was in her own right a masterful land owner with a keen mind. Where many chiefs and royals found themselves land rich and money poor, H.M. Queen Kalama managed thousands of prosperous acres. One of the most famous swaths being Kualoa. If one looks mauka up Hakipuu, one can still see the giant mango tree that was supposedly planted near where her country cottage stood.

Our king was so adamant about H.M. Queen Kalama’s capabilities as his partner, yet not much is written about a woman of such importance. H.M. Queen Kalama outlived her husband making her Queen Dowager. She was Queen Mother to 6 royal siblings. Sadly two children that she gave birth to, both named Keaweaweulaokalani, died in infancy. Of her surviving children, H.M. King Kamehameha IV Alexander Iolani Liholiho and H.M. King Kamehameha V Lot Kapuaiwa had only very brief reigns. Another daughter, Kaiminaauao, died at age 3 from measles when a disease laden U.S. warship came into port. Her last son, H.R.H. Prince Albert Kunuiakea, outlived all his siblings but also passed quite young at 51 years old, only a few years younger than H.M. Queen Kalama when she passed.

H.M. Queen Kalama was and is still a bit of a mystery for us. We hope that with more funding we will have the time and resources to really go deeper and get more information.

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!

*Two important factors: H.M. Queen Kalama’s day of birth is listed as the above but we’re still trying to find confirmation. Her birthday, along with 2 other royal birthdays, fell on a Sunday in 2019 but we wanted to share informative biography posts throughout the week so no one was 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.*