The Blind Navigator Of Tonga
It happened around 1820, during the timeÂ when adventurers from the relatively small islands of Tonga established political importance throughout western Polynesia. Fighting as mercenaries in wars of Fiji, dominating Samoa, raiding northward through Uvea, Tuvalu and into Micronesia, Tonga established a sphere of influence now remembered as the Tongan maritime empire.
Homeward bound from Samoa where the young King Taufaâ€˜ahau had endured a tattooing ceremony that marked his coming of age, the Tongan fleet was struck by storms and blown off course. When the weather cleared, the king’s navigators admitted that they were lost. Short of food, the fleet was in peril.
In another canoe, an old and blind navigator of lower rank, Tuita Kahomovailahi, heard of the trouble. He asked that their canoe be turned into the wind, luffing the sail and bringing it to a stop. Then he asked his son to lower him over the side. He felt the water, smelled and tasted it. He asked if fishing birds were in sight, and the direction of their flight. Then he said, “Tell the king we are in Fijian waters.”
When the king asked for sailing directions, the old man asked his son for the position of the sun in the sky. He suggested a course, saying “When the sun is in the middle of theÂ sky you will see land.” At noon, they raised Lakemba, a Fijian island in the Lau group.
The grateful king raised the old man to noble status, and his descendants have since been known as Fafakitahi, feelers of the sea.
BYRON’S BAY HILO 1825- Herb Kawainui Kane
MAUI FISHES UP THE LAND
Because of family rivalries, Maui decided to out-fish his brothers. Going into the underworld, Maui took the jawbone from the dead side of Muri, his ancestress, and thus equipped took his brothers far out to sea. Using the ala’e for bait, and the jawbone for a hook, Maui managed to snare a kahuni-o-kahe who holds the land to the ocean depths and a whole land mass began to rise. As Maui was about to pull up an entire continent, the line broke. The land plunged back into the sea shattering it into hundreds of fragments. Those that remained were the islands of the Pacific with the largest two being known today as New Zealand and Australia.
Morning Light at Hilo Bay
Black Sands, Big Island
Kakahai’a, Molokai (Japanese Style Wood Print)- Gary Luedtke
These woodblock prints were efforts done over the last 14 years as I moved into what was a new realm of art for me. After discovering the Japanese artists Hiroshige and Hasui in Hawaii in the late 70’s it later occurred to me to meld my interest in Hawaiian scenes with the art of woodblock prints as these Japanese artists had done with their homeland. Hawaii seemed rich in all the elements that I thought would make a good print. These being early and sporadic efforts, their quality as contributed by the carver and printer I employed to make them outshines my sketchy design efforts. Ironically I had turned to the computer to improve my designs with the idea of them ultimately becoming woodblock prints, but coming to appreciate the qualities digital prints offered me in the way of immediacy, control and their greater economy has derailed me largely from that endeavor over to making digital prints.
High Chiefess Kalanikauleleiaiwi- Brook Kapukuniahi Parker
9” X 12” Canvas Genesis Oil
The very sacred High Chiefess Kalanikauleleiaiwi, a daughter of Queen Keakealaniwahine (mother) and King Kaneikakuaiwilani (father) of the Big Island is the inheritor of all the most sacred Kapu gathered from Hawaii to Kauai. She could claim the lineage of every ruling family on every island. She was the end result of over 300 years of careful genetic engineering. The actual architects of those marriage arrangements could be considered brilliant, their posturing, manipulations, and calculations, resulted in the most complex and sophisticated social structure found in all of Polynesia. She would become the mother of kings. Every ruling chief and major Ali’i on every island at the time of Cook’s arrival in 1778 could lay claim to this very special matriarch. Kalanikauleleiaiwi was brought up in high security in a pa (enclosed compound) to ensure her chastity. She was to marry into the most influential and powerful of island families. Her children would be considered of the highest born Ali’i through out the entire Hawaiian archipelago. Her first born would become her most senior in rank.
1. Her first husband Kaulaheanuiokamoku (Kaulahea) was from Maui. He was of the Pi’ilani family line and was heir to a long line of powerful and great Maui rulers. Prestige and honor is bestowed on their first child, a daughter named Kekuiapoiwanui. Kaulahea’s son, Kekaulike by another wife has arrangements made to marry his half sister, Kekuiapoiwanui. Their marriage is consideed a niaupi’o marriage. The combination of them being so closely related and her being of the highest rank insure their children superior status among all island chiefly families. This sibling marriage produces four children; they are Kamehamehanuiailuau, a son, Kalolapupuka, (Kalola) a daughter, Kuho’oheiheipahu, a daughter (died young) and another son, Kahekilinuiahumanu, (Kahekili, King of Maui). The three remaining siblings would play major roles in the closing chapters of Hawaiian history.
2. Her second husband is from her home island, she marries her half brother, Keaweekahiali’iokamoku(Keawe), ruling chief of most of the island of Hawaii. They have the same mother, Keakealaniwahine, but Keawe’s father is Kanaloakapulehu. Born to this sibling couple are two children; Kalanike’eaumoku, a son, and Kekelaokalani a daughter.
3. Her third husband is a high chief from Kohala, Kauauanuiamahi. She bears him a son by the name of Alapa’inuiakauaua (Alapa’i).
4. Her fourth husband and purportedly her true love, is a high chief from Kauai named Lonoikahaupu. She bears him a daughter Kanoena and a son Keawepoepoe. These siblings are joined in a Pi’o (full brother/sister) marriage and they have born to them three children, Kailaupule, a girl, and twin sons, Kame’eiamoku and Kamanawa. Keawepoepoe through another wife has a son named Ke’eaumokupapaiahiahi, (father to future Queen Ka’ahumanu).
These three brothers will rise in position and influence yet future in the court of their young nephew Kamehameha Kunuiakea (Kamehameha).
5. Kalanikauleleiaiwi is reported to have finally married a High Chief from Kohala named Kanekoa. To them was born a daughter named Po’omaikalani.
Keiki Maui (The Birth of Maui)
Kaiana Ka‘Ahu’ula- Brook K. Parker
By Brook K. Parker
Kaiana Ka‘Ahu’ula was the son of Ahu’ula a Keawe, father and Kaupekamoku his mother. He was an uncle to Kamehameha and first cousins to Kalaniopu’u and Keouakupuapaikalani on his father’s side. He was also first cousins to Kahekili and Kaeokulani on his mother’s side. Kaiana was well trained in the arts of war and in other chiefly disciplines. He spent three years in foreign lands traveling with a Captain Meares and had been trained in the use of foreign weapons. Upon their initial meeting in Kona, Kaiana gives Kamehameha a quantity of muskets and cannon and becomes a favorite of the king. Kamehameha makes him a general in his armies and Kaiana solidifies his allegiance on the battle field with his superb fighting skills, valor and fearlessness in the wars with Kamehameha’s adversaries.
As the wars progressed Kamehameha and his armies were victorious. He had conquered the majority of the islands. Only O’ahu and Kauai remained. The armies of Kamehameha were on Moloka’i preparing to launch an invasion upon O’ahu and the armies of Kalanikupule. When the final war councils were held prior to the invasion, Kaiana was not invited to participate. Kaiana suspected that the counselors were plotting his death, and fearing assassination, planned to defect. As the invasion fleet left for O’ahu, Kaiana, his brother Nahiole’a with around a thousand of their men broke away from the main fleet and headed for windward O’ahu. Upon landing in the Ko’olau district of O’ahu, Kalanikupule sent some of his forces to repel him, but once it was made known he wanted to join forces, Kalanikupule was delighted to have this new ally.
Kamehameha’s huge fleet landed at Waikiki where it covered the beaches from Waialae to Waikiki. Kalanikupule and his chiefs were strategically stationed at various points but was no match for the superior force and firepower of the invaders. The defenders retreated up Nu’uanu valley. A stronghold was set at La’imi, Puiwa (the hills behind today’s Queen Emma Summer Palace) in Nu’uanu. Here Kaiana and his followers dug in for one last defensive effort. If Kaiana had a weakness it was his disregard for danger and his total lack of fear as he stood tall rallying his men from this defensive enclosure. The cannon and musket fire obliterated this fortress holdout and Kaiana and his brother Nahiole’a were killed. After the fall of Puiwa, a full route was on with the remainder of Kalanikupule’s forces retreating to the top of the valley and forced over the pali to their deaths on the rocks below.
Artist comments: I have always been interested in the story of Kaiana. Physical
descriptions record he stood about 6’5” and very well built. His personal travels took him to China and the Pacific Northwest. Written accounts state as he walked down the streets he looked like a bronze Greek statue come to life. He was said to be very handsome and some scholars believe that it is his portrait drawn by Captain James Cooks’ artist John Webber that is so familiar today. Although not mentioned in Kamakau’s account, the reason why Kaiana wasn’t invited to the war council on Moloka’i was due to rumors that he and Ka’ahumanu, Kamehameha’s favorite wife had an affair and word reached Kamehameha which deeply irritated him. Kaiana knew that Kamehameha knew and wanted him removed from the situation. He figured he take his chances with Kalanikupule and the O’ahu forces.
Kamehameha at Hale Kapuni