Prince Jonah Kuhio Kalanianaole Day
Prince Jonah Kuhio Kalanianaole Day may be a bit of a mouthful, but it is acknowledged on March 26 every year in Hawaii. The man himself was heralded for trying to improve the lives of the people of Hawaii, and it is a public holiday. This means that schools and many businesses close, as does much of the public transport in Hawaii. But who was Prince Jonah Kuhio Kalanianaole? And how do people observe the day?
Who Was Prince Jonah Kuhio Kalanianaole?
Born in 1871 on the island of Kauai, and the cousin of Queen Liliuokalani, she named him her predecessor and therefore gained the title of Prince. After studies in both the United Kingdom and California, he joined a Royalist uprising in 1895 but was captured for treason, imprisoned for a year. When released, he married Chiefess Elizabeth Kahanu Ka’auwai. He believed that working against the royalists could improve the lives of the people, so when the monarchy was overthrown, he joined forces with the industrialists responsible.
He later became the republican candidate to congress which is where he managed to negotiate a significant change in important areas such as a deal for the dredging of pearl harbour that also meant its construction. Prince Jonah Kuhio Kalanianaole also oversaw the establishment of national parks and a hospital for lepers. He was also integral in the shaping of Hawaii’s governmental structure that is still in place today.
One of his most significant legacies is the passing of the 1920 Hawaiian Homes Commission Act. Also important was the bill he introduced in 1919, requesting that Hawaii become a State in America. It wasn’t until 1959 that Hawaii became the 50 the State, but it all started with Prince Jonah Kuhio Kalanianaole. Even in the days before he died, he asked a friend to continue working towards the rehabilitation of Hawaiians.
He passed away in 1922 near Honolulu, and the holiday that is still observed today was first honoured in his name in 1949.
How To Observe Prince Jonah Kuhio Kalanianaole Day
In Hawaii, the celebrations can last the entire month of March, but the official day is observed on or around the 26th. For most, the best way to observe the day is to get involved with the parade and festivals that take place. Many of them involve the customs and traditions of Hawaiians and one of the celebrations even involves a canoe race.
It can be a good time to educate yourself and others on the life of Prince Jonah Kuhio Kalanianaole. There is much to find out, particularly in his dealings with congress as he strived for a better tomorrow for Hawaii. His legacy has had a lasting impact which is why the day is celebrated in such a manner. His many accomplishments are worth looking into, as is his life in general. It is safe to say that Hawaii has been a better place for all his efforts so it should be rewarding to find out just what he did, and even spread the word on March 26th.