Tuesday, July 31, 2012


Today is La Ho`iho`i Ea - Sovereignty Restoration day in Hawai`i.

It was a wrong made right after five months - the restoration of the Hawaiian Kingdom when forced under British rule in 1843.

In the early 1840s, during the reign of King Kamehameha III, English consul Richard Charlton made outrageous land claims against the Hawaiian people to provoke a British takeover.

At his request, a British war cruiser arrived on Feb. 10, 1843, under the command of Lord George Paulet, who demanded special lands and rights from the king for British subjects.

In order to avoid bloodshed, Kamehameha III ceded his kingdom to Paulet under protest and appealed to Queen Victoria for redress.

British fleet commander Adm. Richard Thomas, enforcing his country's policy that the laws and customs of native governments be treated with courtesy and respect, sailed from Mexico to Hawai`i to remedy the trouble.

On July 31, 1843, Thomas ordered the Hawaiian flag raised and the kingdom restored at a ceremony at Kulaokahu`a - which today is known as Thomas Square named after him.

Kamehameha III proclaimed a 10-day holiday, and throughout his reign, July 31 was celebrated as La Ho'iho'i Ea or Sovereignty Restoration Day.

He also proclaimed the now famous motto, "Ua mau ke ea o ka `aina i ka pono," which means, "The sovereignty of the land is maintained by right behavior."

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