Thursday, November 25, 2021














By Leon Siu - Hawaiian National

Celebrating La Ku'oko'a – Independence Day

On November 28, 1843 (178 years ago) France and Great Britain formally recognized the Sandwich Islands (the Hawaiian Kingdom) as a sovereign, independent nation-state. King Kamehameha III declared the date a national holiday and La Ku`oko`a became the most celebrated holiday in the Kingdom for over 50 years!

That is, until 1895 when the Republic of Hawai`i, the insurgency that displaced the Queen and the Hawaiian Kingdom, ordered the American Thanksgiving Day holiday to be celebrated instead of La Lu`oko`a. It so happened that year, the American Thanksgiving Day fell on November 28.

During the period of American domination, the Hawaiian Kingdom high holiday of La Ku`oko`a was overshadowed and lost to memory - until about 28 years ago when Kekuni Blaisdell and other patriots revived the observance of La Ku`oko`a and La Ho`iho`i Ea. Ever since, these holidays have been increasingly celebrated with events in several communities throughout our nation.

But let's see if we can turn this 178th anniversary into an opportunity to spread awareness of the significance of La  Ku`oko`a where it really counts… our friends and families..

What if we each took a few minutes at our Thanksgiving dinners to share with our families and friends about the significance of Hawai`i's Independence Day and to say how thankful we are that our country was recognized as a sovereign nation; a nation that is reawakening! In one day we would effectively reach thousands more of our 'ohana in the intimacy of our homes with the story of Hawai`i's Independence Day…more than we would have at a big public rally. When we tell our country's story, we affirm the narrative; it becomes more personal; it becomes our story… and the awakening spreads.

Below is a flyer about La Ku`oko`a that you can print out and use to share with your`'ohana.