April 14, 1820 – Honolulu Station

He Huliau: Intersecting Worlds 1820 – 1825

C. E. Bensell, View of the Islands of Woahoo in the Pacific, 1821.

The Thaddeus anchored outside Honolulu harbor and sent a delegation to meet with Francisco de Paula Marin, a Spanish Catholic who served as an interpreter for the government. Understanding their intent, Marin sent a messenger to Boki, governor of O‘ahu, who was away from Honolulu. In the ensuing days, a ship arrived from Kailua-Kona, carrying Liholiho’s instructions regarding the mission. On Boki’s return, and with his concurrence, on April 19, the missionaries took up residence in three thatched huts, offered for their use by several foreign ship captains.

“Having at length succeeded in making the necessary arrangements casting ourselves again on the care of divine providence, and putting ourselves in the power and possession of uncivilized pagans and strangers, on this interesting day we disembarked from the board that had borne us in safety across the mighty waters, from our dear native land, and here took up our abode in this dark heathen land, which will be the scene of our 1abors and sufferings, and probably the resting place of our bones when our toils are over and our pilgrimage is ended.”
Journal of the Sandwich Island Mission, Vol. 1, p. 35


“When houses were not provided by Boki [per terms of the instructions from Liholiho], Capt. Pigot and Capt. Starbuck offered to ‘make a vigorous effort to help get the houses built.’ In order perhaps to pressure the ali‘i into giving more assistance to the mission, the missionaries convened a meeting on May 10, 1820, ‘inviting cooperation of the friends of humanity and truth.’… The missionaries then explained through an interpreter to Boki the purpose of the meeting. With regard to the houses, Boki replied that he intended to oversee the building personally, as this was what Liholiho wished. …Boki held fast to the authority of the ali‘i. By denying the ability of the haole newcomers to erect buildings, he reserved for himself the power to choose when the homes would be built.”
— Noelani Arista, The Kingdom and the Republic: Sovereign Hawai‘i and the Early United States, pp.120-121


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