History of Later Years
of the Hawaiian Monarchy

SUPPLEMENT A.

 

 

Report of Col. J. H. Blount

 

HONOLULU, H. L, July 17th, 1893

 

To The HON. WALTER Q. GRESHAM, Secretary of State, Washington, D. C.

 

Sir: On the 11th of March, 1893, I was appointed by the President of the United States as Special Commissioner to the Hawaiian Islands. At the same time the following instructions were given to me by you:

 

On the 29th of the same month I reached the City of Honolulu. The American Minister, the Hon. John L. Stevens, accompanied by a committee from the Annexation Club, came on board the vessel which had brought me. He informed me that this club had rented an elegant house, well furnished, and provided servants and a carriage and horses for my use; that I could pay for this accommodation just what I chose, from nothing up. He urged me very earnestly to accept the offer. I declined it, and informed him that I should go to a hotel.

 

The committee soon after this renewed the offer, which I again declined.

 

Soon afterward the ex-Queen, through her Chamberlain, tendered her carriage to convey me to my hotel. This I courteously declined.

 

I located myself at the Hawaiian Hotel. For several days I Was engaged receiving calls from persons of all classes and of various political views. I soon became conscious of the fact that all minds were quietly and anxiously looking to see what action the Government of the United States would take, The troops from the Boston were doing military duty for the Provisional Government. The American flag was floating over the Government building. Within it the Provisional Government conducted its business under an American protectorate, to be continued, according to the avowed purpose of the American- Minister, during negotiations with the United States for annexation.

 

My instructions directed me to make inquiries which, in the interest of candor and truth, could not be done when the minds of thousands of Hawaiian citizens were full of uncertainty as to what the presence of American troops, the American flag and the American protectorate implied. It seemed necessary that all these influences must be withdrawn before those inquiries could be prosecuted in a manner befitting the dignity and power of the United States.

 

Inspired with such feelings and confident no disorder would ensue, I directed the removal of the flag of the United States from the Government building and the return of the American troops to their vessels. This was accomplished without any demonstration of joy or grief on the part of the populace.

 

The afternoon before, in an interview with President Dole, in response to my inquiry, he said that the Provisional Government was now able to preserve order, although it could not have done so for several weeks after the proclamation establishing it.

 

In the evening of the same day the American Minister called on me with a Mr. Walter G. Smith, who, he said, desired to make an important communication to me and whom he knew to be very intelligent and reliable. Thereupon Mr. Smith, with intense gravity, informed me that he knew beyond doubt that it had been arranged between the Queen and the Japanese Commissioner that if the American flag and troops were removed the troops from the Japanese man-of-war Naniwa would land and reinstate the Queen.

 

Mr. Smith was the editor of the Hawaiian Star, established by the Annexation Club for the purpose of advocating annexation. The American Minister expressed his belief in the statement of Mr. Smith, and urged the importance of the American troops remaining on shore until I could communicate with you and you could have the opportunity to communicate with the Japanese Government and obtain from it assurances that Japanese troops would not be landed to enforce any policy on the Government or people of the Hawaiian Islands.

 

I was not impressed much with these statements. When the Japanese Commissioner learned that the presence of the Japanese man-of-war was giving currency to suggestions that his Government intended to interfere with domestic affairs here, he wrote to his Government asking that the vessel be ordered away, which was done. He expressed to me his deep regret that any one should charge that the empire of Japan, having so many reasons to value the friendship of the Government of the United States, would consent to offend that Government by interfering in the political conflicts in these islands, to which it was averse.

 

In the light of subsequent events I trust the correctness of my action will be the more fully justified. The Provisional Government left to its own preservation, the people freed from any fear of free intercourse with me in so far as my action could accomplish it, the disposition of the minds of all people to peace pending the consideration by the Government of the United States as to what should be its action in connection with affairs here, cleared the way for me to commence the investigation with which I was charged.

 

The causes of the revolution culminating in the dethronement of the Queen and the establishment of the Provisional Government, January 17th, 1893, are remote and proximate. A brief presentation of the former will aid in a fuller apprehension of the atter.

 

On the 18th of February, 1874, David Kalakaua was proclaimed King. In 1875 a treaty of commercial reciprocity between the United States and the Hawaiian Islands was ratified, and the laws necessary to carry it into operation were enacted in 1876. It provided, as you are aware, for the free importation into the United States of several articles among which was muscavado, brown, and all other unrefined sugars, syrups of sugar cane, melada, and molasses, produced in the Hawaiian Islands.

 

From it there came to the islands an intoxicating increase of wealth, a new labor system, an Asiatic population, an alienation between the native and white races, an impoverishment of the former, an enrichment of the latter, and the many so-called revolutions, which are the foundation for the opinion that stable government cannot be maintained.

 

In the year 1845, under the influence of white residents, the lands were so distributed between the Crown, the Government, the chief?, and the people as to leave the latter with an insignificant interest in lands, 27,830 acres.

 

The story of this division is discreditable to King, chiefs, and white residents, but would be tedious here. The chiefs became largely indebted to the whites, and thus the foundation for the large holdings of the latter was laid.

 

Prior to 1876 the Kings were controlled largely by such men as Dr. Judd, Mr. Wyllie, and other leading white citizens holding positions in their Cabinets.

 

A King rarely changed his Cabinet. The important offices were held by white men. A feeling of amity existed between the native and foreign races unmarred by hostile conflict. It should be noted that at this period the native generally knew how to read and write his native tongue, into which the Bible and a few English works were translated. To this, native newspapers of extensive circulation contributed to the awakening of his intellect. He also generally read and wrote English.

 

From 1820 to 1866 missionaries of various nationalities, especially American, with unselfishness, toil, patience, and piety, had devoted themselves to the improvement of the natives. They gave them a language, a religion, and an immense movement on the lines of civilization. In process of time the descendants of these good men grew up in secular pursuits. Superior by nature, education, and other opportunities, they acquired wealth. They sought to succeed to the political control exercised by their fathers. The reverend missionary disappeared. In his stead there came the Anglo-Saxon in the person of his son, ambitious to acquire wealth and to continue that political control reverently conceded to his pious ancestor. Hence, in satire, the native designated him a "missionary," which has become a campaign phrase of wonderful potency. Other white foreigners came into the country, especially Americans, English, and Germans. These, as a rule, did not become naturalized and participate in the voting franchise. Business and race affiliation occasioned sympathy and co-operation between these two classes of persons of foreign extraction.

 

Does this narration of facts portray a situation in a Government in whole or in part representative favorable to the ambition of a lender who will espouse the native cause? Would it be strange for him to stir the native heart by picturing a system of political control under which the foreigner had wickedly become possessed of the soil, degraded free labor by an uncivilized system of coolie labor, prostituted society by injecting into it a people hostile to Christianity and the civilization of the nineteenth century, exposed their own daughters to the evil influences, of an overwhelming male population of a degraded type, implanted Japanese and Chinese women almost insensible, to feelings of chastity, and then loudly boasted of their Christianity?

 

On the other hand, was it not natural for the white race to vaunt their wealth and intelligence, their Christian success in rescuing the native from barbarism, their gift of a Government regal in name but containing many of the principles of freedom; to find in the natives defective intelligence, tendencies to idolatry, to race prejudice, and a disposition under the influence of white and half-white leaders to exercise political domination; to speak of their thriftlessness in private life and susceptibility to bribes in legislative action; to proclaim the unchasteness of native women, and to take at all hazards the direction of public affairs from the native?

 

With such a powerful tendency to divergence and political strife, with its attendant bitterness and exaggerations, we must enter upon the field of inquiry pointed out in your instructions.

 

It is not my purpose to take up this racial controversy at its birth, but when it had reached striking proportions and powerfully acted in the evolution of grave political events culminating in the present status. Nor shall I relate all the minute details of political controversy at any given period, but only such and to such extent as may illustrate the purpose just indicated.

 

It has already appeared that under the Constitution of 1852 the Legislature consisted of two bodies one elected by the people and the other chosen by the King and that no property qualifications hindered the right of suffrage. The King and people through the two bodies held a check on each other.

 

It has also been shown that in 1864 by a royal proclamation a new Constitution, sanctioned by a Cabinet of prominent white men, was established, restricting the right of suffrage and combining the representative and nobles into one body. This latter provision was designed to strengthen the power of the Crown by removing a body distinctly representative. This instrument remained in force twenty-three years. The Crown appointed the nobles generally from white men of property and intelligence. In like manner the King selected his Cabinet. These remained in office for a long series of years and directed the general conduct of public affairs.

 

Chief Justice Judd of the Supreme Court of the Hawaiian Islands, in a formal statement, uses this language:

"Under every Constitution prior to 1887 the Ministers were appointed by the King and removed by him; but until Kalakaua's reign it was a very rare thing that any King changed his Ministry. They had a pretty long lease of political life. My father was Minister for seven or ten years, and Mr. Wyllie for a longer period. It was a very rare political occurrence and made a great sensation when a change was made. Under Kalakaua things were different. I think we had twenty-six different Cabinets during his reign."

The record discloses thirteen Cabinets. Two of these were directly forced on him by the reformers. Of the others, six were in sympathy with the reformers and eminent in their confidence. The great stir in Cabinet changes commenced with the Gibson Cabinet in 1882. He was a man of large information, free from all suspicion of bribery, politically ambitious, and led the natives and some whites.

 

It may not be amiss to present some of the criticisms against Kalakaua and his party formally filed with me by Prof. W. D. Alexander, a representative reformer.

 

On the 12th of February, 1874, Kalakaua was elected King by the Legislature. The popular choice lay between him and the Queen Dowager.

 

In regard to this, Mr. Alexander says that "the Cabinet and the American Party used all their influence in favor of the former, while the English favored Queen Emma, who was devoted to their interest."

 

Notwithstanding there were objections to Kalakaua's character, he says: "It was believed, however, that if Queen Emma should be elected there would be no hope of our obtaining a reciprocity treaty with the United States."

 

He gives an account of various obnoxious measures advocated by the King which were defeated.

 

In 1882 he says the race issue was raised by Mr. Gibson, and only two white men were elected to the Legislature on the Islands.

 

A bill prohibiting the sale of intoxicating liquors to natives was repealed at this session.

 

A $10,000,000 loan bill was again introduced, but was shelved in committee. The appropriation bill was swelled to double the estimated receipts of the Government, including $30,000 for coronation expenses, besides large sums for military expenses, foreign embassies, etc.

 

A bill was reported giving the King power to appoint District Justices, which had formerly been done by the Justices of the Supreme Court.

 

A million of dollars of silver was coined by the King, worth 84 cents to the dollar, which was intended to be exchanged for gold bonds at par, under the loan act of 1882. This proceeding was enjoined by the court. The Privy Council declared the coin to be of the legal value expressed on their face, subject to the legal-tender act, and they were gradually put into circulation. A profit of $150,000 is said to have been made on this transaction.

 

In 1884 a reform Legislature was elected. A lottery bill, an opium-license bill and an $8,000,000 loan bill were defeated.

 

In the election for the Legislature of 1886 it is alleged that by the use of gin, chiefly furnished by the King, and by the use of his patronage, it was carried against the reform party; that out of twenty-eight candidates, twenty-six were office holders - one a tax assessor and one the Queen's secretary. There was only one white man on the Government ticket - Gibson's son-in-law. Only ten reform candidates were elected. In this Legislature an opium bill was passed providing for a license for four years, to be granted by the Minister of the Interior, with the consent of the King, for $30,000 per annum.

 

Another act was passed to create an Hawaiian Board of Health, consisting of five native doctors, appointed by the King, with power to issue certificates to native kahunas (doctors) to practice medicine.

 

A $2,000,000 loan bill was passed, which was used largely in taking up bonds on a former loan.

 

It is claimed that in granting the lottery franchise the King fraudulently obtained $75,000 for the franchise, and then sold it to another person, and that subsequently the King was compel led to refund the same.

 

These are the principal allegations on which the revolution of 1887 is justified.

 

None of the legislation complained of would have been considered a cause for revolution in any one of the United States, but would have been used in the elections to expel the authors from power. The alleged corrupt action of the King could have been avoided by more careful legislation and would have been a complete remedy for the future.

 

The rate of taxation on real or personal property never exceeded 1 per cent.

 

To all this the answer comes from the reformers: "The native is unfit for government, and his power must be curtailed."

 

The general belief that the King had accepted what is termed the opium bribe and the failure of his efforts to unite the Samoan Islands with his own kingdom had a depressing influence on his friends, and his opponents used it with all the effect they could.

 

The last Cabinet prior to the revolution of 1887 was antireform. Three of its members were half castes; two of them were and are recognized as lawyers of ability by all.

 

The amendments in the Constitution of 1887 disclose:

 

First: A purpose to take from the King the power to appoint nobles and to vest it in persons having $3,000 worth of unencumbered property or an annual income above the expense of living of $600. This gave to the whites three-fourths of the vote for nobles and one-fourth to the natives.

 

The provisos to the fourth section of Article 59 and Article 62 have this significant application. Between the years 1878 and 1886 the Hawaiian Government imported from Madeira and the Azores Islands 10,216 contract laborers, men, women, and children. Assume, for convenience of argument, that 2,000 of these were males of twenty years and upward. Very few of them could read and write. Only three of them were naturalized up to 1888, and since then only five more have become so. The remainder are subjects of Portugal. These were admitted to vote on taking the following oath and receiving the accompanying certificate:

 

I, the undersigned, Inspector of Elections, duly appointed and commissioned, do hereby certify that _____, aged , a native of , residing at _____, in said district, has this day taken before me the oath to support the Constitution of the Hawaiian Kingdom, promulgated and proclaimed on the 7th day of July, and the laws of said kingdom.

 

These ignorant laborers were taken before the election from the cane fields in large numbers by the overseers before the proper officer to administer the oath, and then carried to the polls and voted according to the will of the plantation manager. Why was this done? In the language of Chief Justice Judd, "to balance the native vote with the Portuguese vote." This same purpose is admitted by all persons here. Again, large numbers of Americans, Germans, English, and other foreigners un naturalized were permitted to vote under the foregoing form.

 

Two-thirds of this number were never naturalized, but voted under the above form of oath and certificate. They were citizens of the United States, Germany, and Great Britain, invited to vote under this Constitution to neutralize further the native voting strength. This same action was taken in connection with other European populations.

 

For the first time in the history of the country the number of nobles is made equal to the number of representatives. This furnished a veto power over the representatives of the popular vote to the nobles, who were selected by persons mostly holding allegiance, and not subjects of the kingdom. The election of a single representative by the foreign element gave to it the Legislature.

 

The power of appointing a cabinet was left with the King. His power to remove one was taken away. The removal could only be accomplished by a vote of want of confidence by a majority of all the elective members of the Legislature. The tenure of office of a cabinet minister henceforth depends on the pleasure of the Legislature, or, to speak practically, on the favor of certain foreigners, Americans and Europeans. Then it is declared that no act of the King shall have any effect, unless it be countersigned by a member of the cabinet, who by that signature makes himself responsible.

 

Power is taken from the King in the selection of nobles, not to be given to the masses, but to the wealthy classes, a large majority of whom are not subjects of the kingdom. Power to remove a cabinet is taken away from him, not to be conferred on a popular body, but on one designed to be ruled by foreign subjects. Power to do any act was taken from the King, unless by a member of the cabinet. This instrument was never submitted to the people for approval or rejection, nor was it ever contemplated by its friends and promoters, and of this no man will make issue.

 

Prior to this revolution, large quantities of arms bad been brought by a secret league from San Francisco, and placed among its members. The first election under this Constitution took place with the foreign population well armed and the troops hostile to the crown and people. The result was the election of what was termed a reform Legislature. The mind of an observer of these events notes henceforth a division of the people by the terms native and foreigner. It does not import race hostility simply. It is founded rather upon the attempted control of the country by a population of foreign origin and zealously holding allegiance to foreign powers. It had an alliance with natives of foreign parentage, some of whom were the descendants of missionary ancestors. Hence the terms "foreigner" and "missionary" in Hawaiian politics have their peculiar significance.

 

Foreign ships of great powers lying in the harbor of Honolulu to protect the persons and property of their citizens, and these same citizens left by their Government without reproof for participation in such events as I have related, must have restrained the native mind, from a resort to physical force. Its means of resistance was naturally what was left of political power.

 

In 1890 a Legislature was elected in favor of a new Constitution. The calculation of the reformers to elect all the nobles failed, owing to a defection of whites, especially among the intelligent laboring classes in the City of Honolulu, who were qualified to vote for nobles under the income clause. The cabinet installed by the revolution was voted out. A new Cabinet in harmony with the popular will, was appointed and remained in power until the death of the King in I891. In 1892 another Legislature was elected. Thrum's Handbook of Information for 1893, whose author, a reformer and annexationist, is intelligent, and in the employ of the Provisional Government, and whose work is highly valued by all persons, says, concerning the election:

 

The result brought to the Legislature three rather evenly balanced parties. This, with an admixture of self-interest in certain quarters, has been the means of much delay in the progress of the session, during which there have been no less than three new cabinets on "want-of-confidence" resolutions.

 

Judge Widemann of the National Reform Party divides the Legislature up thus: "Three parties and some independents the National Reform, Reform, and Liberal." There were nine members of the National Reform Party, fourteen members of the Reform, twenty-one Liberals, and four independents.

 

The Liberals favored the old mode of selecting nobles, the National Reform Party was in favor of a new Constitution reducing the qualification of voter for nobles, and the Reform Party was in opposition to both these ideas.

 

There were a number of members of all these faction-aspiring to be cabinet officers. This made certain individuals ignore party lines and form combinations to advance personal interests. The Reform Party seized upon the situation and made such combinations as voted out cabinet after cabinet until finally what was termed the Wilcox Cabinet was appointed. This was made up entirely of reformers. Those members of the National Reform and Liberal Parties who had been acting with the Reform Party to this point, and expecting representational the cabinet, being disappointed, set to work to vote out this cabinet, which was finally accomplished.

 

There was never a time when the Reform Party had any approach to a majority of members of the Legislature.

 

Let it be borne in mind that the time now was near at hand when the Legislature would probably be prorogued. Whatever cabinet was in power at the time of the prorogation had control of public affairs until a new Legislature should assemble two years afterward and longer, unless expelled by a vote of want of confidence.

 

An anti-reform cabinet was appointed by the Queen. Some faint struggle was made toward organizing to vote out this cabinet, but it was abandoned. The Legislature was prorogued. The reform members absented themselves from the session of that day in manifestation of their disappointment in the loss of power through the cabinet for the ensuing two years. The letters of the American Minister and naval officers stationed at Honolulu in 18J2 indicate that any failure to appoint a Ministry of the Reform Party would produce a political crisis. The voting out of the Wilcox Cabinet produced a discontent among the reformers verging very closely toward one, and had more to do with the revolution than the Queen's proclamation. The first was the foundation, the latter the opportunity.

 

In the Legislatures of 1890 and 1892, many petitions were filed asking for a new Constitution. Many were presented to the King and Queen. The discontent with the Constitution of 1887 and eagerness to escape from it controlled the elections against the party which had established it. Divisions on the mode of changing the Constitution, whether by legislative action or by Constitutional Convention, and the necessity for a two-thirds vote of the Legislature to effect amendments, prevented relief by either method. Such was the situation at the prorogation of the Legislature of 1892.

 

This was followed by the usual ceremonies at the palace on the day of prorogation - the presence of the Cabinet, Supreme Court Judges, Diplomatic Corps, and troops.

 

The Queen informed her cabinet of her purpose to proclaim a new Constitution, and requested them to sign it.

 

From the best information I can obtain the changes to the Constitution of 1887 were as follows:

Art. 20. By adding to exceptions: Members of the Privy Council, Notary Public, agents to take acknowledgments.

 

Art. 22. By adding Princes Kawananakoa and Kalanianaole as heirs to the throne.

 

Art. 46. Changing the session of the Legislature to the month of April.

 

Art. 49. That the Queen shall sign and approve all bills and resolutions, even to those that are voted when passed over her veto.

 

Art. 56. Pay of Representatives raised to $500 instead of $250 for biennial term.

 

Art. 57. The Queen shall appoint the nobles, not to exceed twenty-four.

 

Art. 60. The Representatives may be increased from twenty-four, as at present, to forty-eight.

 

Art. 72. Only subjects shall vote.

 

Art. 6. The term of appointment of the Supreme Court Judges, not for life, as before, but for six years.

 

Art. 75. The appointment of Governors of each island for four-years term.

Her Ministers declined to sign, and two of them communicated to leading reformers (Mr. L. A. Thurston, Mr. W. O. Smith, and others) the Queen's purpose and the position of the cabinet. Finding herself thwarted by the position of the cabinet, she declared to the crowd around the palace that she could not give them a new Constitution at that time on account of the action of her Ministers, and that she would do so at some future time. This was construed by some to mean that she would do so at an early day when some undefined, favorable opportunity should occur, and by others when a new Legislature should assemble and a new cabinet might favor her policy, or some other than an extreme and revolutionary course could be resorted to.

 

It seems that the members of the Queen's Cabinet, after much urging, prevailed upon her to abandon the idea of proclaiming a new Constitution. The co-operation of the cabinet appears to have been, in the mind' of the Queen, necessary to give effect to her proclamation. This method had been adopted by Kamehameha V, in proclaiming the Constitution of 1864. The Constitution of 1887 preserved this same form, in having the King proclaim that Constitution on the recommendation of the cabinet, which he had been prevailed upon by a committee from the mass meeting to appoint.

 

The leaders of the movement urged the members of the Queen's Cabinet not to resign, feeling assured that until they had done so the Queen would not feel that the power rested in her alone to proclaim a new Constitution. In order to give further evidence of her purpose to abandon the design of proclaiming it, a proclamation was published on the morning of the 16th of January, signed by herself and her Ministers, pledging her not to do so and was communicated to Minister Stevens that morning.

 

The following papers were among the files of the legation when turned over to me:

DEPARTMENT OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS, HONOLULU, H. L, Jan. 16, 1893

 

SIR: I have the honor to enclose to your Excellency a copy of a "By Authority" notice issued this morning by her Majesty's Ministers under her Majesty's sanction and approval.

 

I have the honor to be, with the highest respect, your Excellency's obedient servant,

SAMUEL PARKER, Minister of Foreign Affairs

To His Excellency JOHN L. STEVENS, United States Envoy Extraordinary and Minister Plenipotentiary, Honolulu.

 

BY AUTHORITY

 

Her Majesty's Ministers desire to express their appreciation for the quiet and order which have prevailed in this community since the events of Saturday, and are authorized to say that the promulgation of a new Constitution was under stress of her native subjects.

 

Authority is given for the assurance that any changes desired in the fundamental law of the land will be sought only by methods provided in the Constitution itself.

 

Her Majesty's Ministers request all citizens to accept the assurance of her Majesty in the same spirit in which it is given.

(Signed) LlLIUOKALANI

SAMUEL PARKER, Minister of Foreign Affairs

W. H. CORNWELL, Minister of Finance

JOHN F. COLBURN, Minister of the Interior

A. P. PETERSON, Attorney-General

On the same day a mass meeting of between fifteen hundred and two thousand people assembled, attended by the leading men in the Liberal and National Reform parties, and adopted resolutions as follows:

 

Resolved, That the assurance of her Majesty the Queen contained in this day's proclamation is accepted by the people as a satisfactory guarantee that the Government does not and will not seek any modification of the Constitution by any other means than those provided in the organic law.

 

Resolved, That, accepting this assurance, the citizens here will give their cordial support to the Administration and indorse them in sustaining that policy.

 

To the communication inclosing the Queen's proclamation just cited, there appears to have been made no response. On the next day, as if to give further assurance, the following paper was sent to Mr. Stevens:

SIR: The assurance conveyed by a royal proclamation by myself and Ministers yesterday having been received by my native subjects, and by them ratified at a mass meeting, was received in a different spirit by the meeting representing the foreign population and interests in my kingdom. It is now my desire to give your Excellency, as the diplomatic representative of the United States of America at my Court, the solemn assurance that the Constitution will be upheld and maintained by me and my Ministers, and no changes will be made except by the methods therein provided.

 

I desire to express to your Excellency this assurance in the spirit of that friendship which has ever existed between my kingdom and that of the Government of the United States of America, and which, I trust, will long continue.

(Signed) LlLIUOKALANI R.

 

 By the Queen: SAMUEL PARKER, Minister of Foreign Affairs

WILLIAM H. CORNWELL, Minister of Finance

JOHN F. COLBURN, Minister of the Interior

A. P. PETERSON, Attorney-General

lolani Palace. Honolulu, Jan. 17, 1893

His Excellency JOHN L. STEVENS, United States Envoy Extraordinary and Minister Plenipotentiary, Honolulu

On the back of the first page of this communication, written in pencil, is the word "Declined." Immediately under the signature of the Attorney-General, also in pencil is written "1:30 to 1:45," and at the end on the second and last page this sentence, written in ink, appears:

 

"Received at the U. S. Legation about 2 P.M."

 

The cabinet itself could not be moved for two years, and the views of its members were well known to be against establishing a new Constitution by proclamation of the Queen and cabinet.

 

Nearly all of the arms on the Island of Oahu, in which Honolulu is situated, were in the possession of the Queen's Government. A military force, organized and drilled, occupied the station house, the barracks, and the palace the only points of strategic significance in the event of a conflict. The great body of the people moved in their usual course.

 

Women and children passed to and fro through the streets, seemingly unconscious of any impending danger, and yet there were secret conferences held by a small body of men, some of whom were Germans, some Americans, and some native-born subjects of foreign origin.

 

On Saturday evening, the 15th of January, they took up the subject of dethroning the Queen and proclaiming a new Government, with a view of annexation to the United States.

 

The first and most momentous question with them was to devise some plan to have the United States troops landed. Mr. Thurston, who appears to have been the leading spirit, on Monday sought two members of the Queen's Cabinet and urged them to head a movement against the Queen, and to ask Minister Stevens to land the troops, assuring them that in such an event Mr. Stevens would do so. Failing to enlist any of the Queen's Cabinet in the cause, it was necessary to devise some other mode to accomplish this purpose. A committee of safety, consisting of thirteen members, had been formed from a little body of men assembled in W. O. Smith's office. A deputation of these, informing Mr. Stevens of their plans, arranged with him to land the troops if they would ask it "for the purpose of protecting life and property." It was further agreed between him and them that in the event they should occupy the Government Building and proclaim a new Government he would recognize it. The two leading members of the committee, Messrs. Thurston and Smith, growing uneasy as to the safety of their persons, went to him to know if he would protect them in the event of their arrest by the authorities, to which he gave his assent.

 

At the mass meeting called by the Committee of Safety on the 16th of January, there was no communication to the crowd of any purpose to dethrone the Queen or to change the form of Government, but only to authorize the committee to take steps to prevent consummation of the Queen's purposes and to have guarantees of public safety. The Committee on Public Safety had kept their purposes from the public view at this mass meeting and at their small gatherings for fear of proceedings against them by the Government of the Queen.

 

After the mass meeting had closed, a call on the American Minister for troops was made in the following terms, and signed indiscriminately by Germans, by Americans, and by Hawaiian subjects of foreign extraction:

HAWAIIAN ISLANDS, HONOLULU, Jan. 16, 1893

 

To His EXCELLENCY JOHN L. STEVENS, American Minister Resident

 

SIR: We, the undersigned, citizens and residents of Honolulu, respectfully represent that, in view of public events in this kingdom, culminating in the revolutionary acts of Queen Liliuokalani on Saturday last, the public safety is menaced and lives and property are in peril, and we appeal to you and the United States forces at your command for assistance.

 

The Queen, with the aid of armed force and accompanied by threats of violence and bloodshed from those with whom she was acting, attempted to proclaim a new constitution, and, while prevented for the time from accomplishing her object, declared publicly that she would only defer her action. This conduct _and action was upon an occasion and under circumstances which have created general alarm and terror.

 

We are unable to protect ourselves without aid, and therefore pray for the protection of the United States forces.

(Signed) HENRY E. COOPER

F. W. McCHESNEY

W. C. WILDER

C. BOLTK

A. BROWN

WILLIAM O. SMITH

HENKY WATERHOUSE

THEO. F. LANSING

ED. SUHR,

L. A. THURSTON

JOHN EMMELUTH

WILLIAM R. CASTLE

J. A. McCANDLESS

Citizens' Committee of Safety

The response to that call does not appear in the files or on the records of the American Legation. It therefore cannot speak for itself. The request of the committee of safety was, however, consented to by the American Minister. The troops were landed.

 

On that very night the committee assembled at the house of Henry Waterhouse, one of its members, living the next door to Mr. Stevens, and finally determined on the dethronement of the Queen, selected its officers, civil and military, and adjourned to meet the next morning.

 

Col. J. H. Soper, an American citizen, was selected to command the military forces. At this Waterhouse meeting it was assented to by all that Mr. Stevens had agreed with the committee of safety that in the event it occupied the Government building and proclaimed a Provisional Government he would recognize it as a de facto government.

 

When the troops were landed on Monday evening, January 16, about 5 o'clock, and began their march through the streets with their small arms, artillery, etc., a great surprise burst upon the community. To but few was it understood. Not much time elapsed before it was given out by members of the committee of safety that they were designed to support them.

 

At the palace, with the cabinet, amongst the leaders of the Queen's military forces, and the great body of the people who were loyal to the Queen, the apprehension came that it was a movement hostile to the existing Government. Protests were filed by the minister of foreign affairs and by the governor of the island against the landing of the troops.

 

Messrs. Parker and Peterson testify that on Tuesday at 1 o'clock they called on Mr. Stevens, and by him were informed that in the event the Queen's forces assailed the insurrectionary forces he would intervene.

 

At 2:30 o'clock of the same day the members of the Provisional Government proceeded to the Government building in squads and read their proclamation. They had separated in their march to the Government building for fear of observation and arrest. There was no sign of an insurrectionary soldier on the street The committee of safety sent to the Government building a Mr. A. S. Wilcox to see who was there, and on being informed that there were no Government forces on the grounds, proceeded in the manner 1 have related and read their proclamations.

 

Just before concluding the reading of their instrument fifteen volunteer troops appeared. Within a half hour afterward some thirty or forty made their appearance.

 

A part of the Queen's forces, numbering 224, were located at the station house, about one-third of a mile from the Government building. The Queen, with a body of 50 troops, was located at the palace, north of the Government building about 400 yards. A little northeast of the palace and some 200 yards from it, at the barracks, was another body of 272 troops. These forces had 14 pieces of artillery, 386 rifles, and 16 revolvers. West of the Government building and across a narrow street were posted Capt. Wiltse and his troops, these likewise having artillery and small-arms.

 

The Government building is in a quadrangular-shaped piece of ground surrounded by streets. The American troops were so posted as to be in front of any movement of troops which should approach the Government building on three sides, the fourth being occupied by themselves. Any attack on the Government from the east side would expose the American troops to the direct fire of the attacking force. Any movement of troops from the palace toward the Government building in the event of a conflict between the military forces would have exposed them to the fire of -the Queen's troops. In fact, it would have been impossible for a struggle between the Queen's forces and the forces of the committee of safety to have taken place without exposing them to the shots of the Queen's forces. To use the language of Admiral Skerrett, the American troops were well located if designed to promote the movement for the Provisional Government and very improperly located if only intended to protect American citizens in person and property.

 

They were doubtless so located to suggest to the Queen and her counsellors that they were in co-operation with the insurrectionary movement, and would when the emergency arose manifest it by active support.

 

It did doubtless suggest to the men who read the proclamation that they were having the support of the American minister and naval commander and were safe from personal harm. Why had the American minister located the troops in such a situation and then assured the members of the committee of safety that on their occupation of the Government building he would recognize it as a government de facto, and as such give it support? Why was the Government building designated to them as the place which, when there proclamation was announced therefrom, would be followed by his recognition. It was not a point of any strategic consequence. It did not involve the employment of a single soldier.

 

A building was chosen where there were no troops stationed, where there was no struggle to be made to obtain access, with an American force immediately contiguous, with the mass of the population impressed with its unfriendly attitude. Aye, more than this before any demand for surrender had even been made on the Queen or on the commander or any officer of any of her military forces at any of the points where her troops were located, the American minister had recognized the Provisional Government and was ready to give it the support of the United States troops!

 

Mr. Damon, the vice-president of the Provisional Government and a member of the advisory council, first went to the station house, which was in command of Marshal Wilson. The cabinet was there located. The vice-president importuned the cabinet and the military commander to yield up the military forces on the ground that the American minister had recognized the Provisional Government and that there ought to be no blood shed.

 

After considerable conference between Mr. Damon and the ministers he and they went to the Government building. The cabinet then and there was prevailed upon to go with the vice-president and some other friends to the Queen and urge her to acquiesce in the situation. It was pressed upon her by the ministers and other persons at that conference that it was useless for her to make any contest, because it was one with the United States; that she could file her protest against what had taken place and would be entitled to a hearing in the city of Washington. After consideration of more than an hour she finally concluded, under the advice of her cabinet and friends, to order the delivery up of her military forces to the Provisional Government under protest. That paper is in the following form:

I, Liliuokalani, by the grace of God and under the constitution of the Hawaiian Kingdom, Queen, do hereby solemnly protest against any and all acts done against myself and the constitutional Government of the Hawaiian Kingdom by certain persons claiming to have established a' provisional government of and for this kingdom.

 

That I yield to the superior force of the United States of America, whose minister plenipotentiary, His Excellency John L. Stevens, has caused United States troops to be landed at Honolulu and declared that he would support the said provisional government.

 

Now, to avoid any collision of armed forces and perhaps the loss of life, [ do, under this protest, and impelled by said force, yield my authority until such time as the Government of the United States shall, upon the facts being presented to it, undo the action of its representatives and reinstate me in the authority which I claim as the constitutional sovereign of the Hawaiian Islands.

 

Done at Honolulu this 17th day of January, A. D. 1893

(Signed) LlLIUOKALANI, R.

SAMUEL PARKER, Minister of Foreign Affairs

WM. H. CORNWELL, Minister of Finance

JOHN. F. COLBURN, Minister of Interior

A. P. PETERSON, Attorney-General

All this was accomplished without the firing of a gun, without a demand for surrender on the part of the insurrectionary forces until they had been converted into a de facto government by the recognition of the American minister with American troops, then ready to interfere in the event of an attack.

 

In pursuance of a prearranged plan, the Government thus established hastened off commissioners to Washington to make a treaty for the purpose of annexing the Hawaiian Islands to the United States.

 

During the progress of the movement the committee of safety alarmed at the fact that the insurrectionists had no troops and no organization, dispatched to Mr. Stevens three persons, to wit: Messrs. L. A. Thurston, W. C. Wilder and H. F. Glade, "to inform him of the situation and ascertain from him what if any protection or assistance could be afforded by the United States for the protection of life and property, the unanimous sentiment and feeling being that life and property were in danger." Mr. Thurston is a native-born subject; Mr. Wilder is of American origin, but has absolved his allegiance to the United States and is a naturalized subject; Mr. Glade is a German subject.

 

The declaration as to the purposes of the Queen contained in the formal request for the appointment of a committee of safety in view of the facts which have been recited, to wit, the action of the Queen and her cabinet, the action of the Royalist mass meeting, and the peaceful movement of her followers, indicating assurances of their abandonment, seem strained in so far as any situation then requiring the landing of troops might exact.

 

The request was made, too, by men avowedly intending to overthrow the existing government and substitute a provisional government therefor, and who, with such purpose in progress of being effected, could not proceed therewith, but fearing arrest and imprisonment and without any thought of abandoning that purpose, sought the aid of the American troops in this situation to prevent any harm to their persons and property. To consent to an application for such a purpose without any e American minister, with naval forces under his command, could not otherwise be construed than as complicity with their plans.

 

The committee, to use their own language, say: " We are unable to protect ourselves without aid, and, therefore, pray for the protection of the United States forces."

 

In less than thirty hours the petitioners have overturned the throne, established a new government, and obtained the recognition of foreign powers.

 

Let us see whether any of these petitioners are American citizens, and if so whether they were entitled to protection, and if entitled to protection at this point whether or not subsequently thereto their conduct was such as could be sanctioned as proper on the part of American citizens in a foreign country.

 

Mr. Henry E. Cooper is an American citizen; was a member of the committee of safety; was a participant from the beginning in their schemes to overthrow the Queen, establish a Provisional Government, and visited Capt. Wiltse's vessel, with a view of securing the aid of American troops, and made an encouraging report thereon. He an American citizen, read the proclamation dethroning the Queen and establishing the Provisional Government.

 

Mr. F. W. McChesney is an American citizen; was co-operating in the revolutionary movement, and had been a member of the advisory council from its inception.

 

Mr. W. C. Wilder is a naturalized citizen of the Hawaiian Islands, owing no allegiance to any other country. He was one of the original members of the advisory council, and one of the orators in the mass meeting on the morning of January 16.

 

Mr. C. Bolte is of German origin, but a regularly naturalized citizen of the Hawaiian Islands.

 

Mr. A. Brown is a Scotchman and has never been naturalized.

 

Mr. W. O. Smith is a native of foreign origin and a subject of the Islands.

 

Mr. Henry Waterhouse, originally from Tasmania, is a naturalized citizen of the Islands.

 

Mr. Theo. F. Lansing is a citizen of the United States, owing and claiming allegiance thereto. He has never been naturalized in this country.

 

Mr. Ed. Suhr is a German subject.

 

Mr. L. A. Thurston is a native-born subject of the Hawaiian Islands, of foreign origin.

 

Mr. John Emmeluth is an American citizen.

 

Mr. W. R. Castle is a Hawaiian of foreign parentage.

 

Mr. J. A. McCandless is a citizen of the United States never having been naturalized here.

 

Six are Hawaiians subjects; five are American citizens; one English and one German. A majority are foreign subjects.

 

It will be observed that they sign as "Citizens' committee of safety."

 

This is the first time American troops were ever landed on these islands at the instance of a committee of safety without notice to the existing government.

 

It is to be observed that they claim to be a citizens' committee of safety and that they are not simply applicants for the protection of the property and lives of American citizens. The chief actors in this movement were Messrs. L. A. Thurston and W. O. Smith.

 

Alluding to the meeting of the committee of safety held at Mr. W. R. Castle's on Sunday afternoon, January 15, Mr. W. O. Smith says:

 

"After we adjourned Mr. Thurston and I called upon the American minister again and informed him of what was being done. Among other things we talked over with him what had better be done in case of our being arrested, or extreme or violent measures being taken by the monarchy in regard to us.

 

"We did not know what steps would be taken, and there was a feeling of great unrest and sense of danger in the community. Mr. Stevens gave assurance of his earnest purpose to afford all the protection that was in his power to protect life and property. He emphasized the fact that while he would call for the United States troops to protect life and property, he could not recognize any government until actually established."

 

Mr. Damon, the vice-president of the Provisional Government, origin, led and directed by two native subjects of the Hawaiian returning from the country on the evening of the 16th, and seeing the troops in the streets, inquired of Mr. Henry Waterhouse, "Henry, what does all this mean?

 

"To which he says, if he "remembers rightly," Mr. Waterhouse replied, "It is all up!" On being questioned by me as to his understanding of the expression, "It is all up," he said he understood from it that the American troops had taken possession of the island.

 

Mr. C. L. Carter, at the government house, assured Mr. Damon that the United States troops would protect them. Mr. Damon was astonished when they were not immediately marched over from Arion Hall to the government building and became uneasy. He only saw protection in the bodily presence of the American troops in this building. The committee of safety, with its frequent interviews with Mr. Stevens, saw it in the significance of the position occupied by the United States troops and in the assurance of Mr. Stevens that he would interfere for the purpose of protecting life and property, and that when they should have occupied the government building and read their proclamation dethroning the Queen and establishing the Provisional Government he would recognize it.

 

The committee of safety, recognizing the fact that the landing of the troops under existing circumstances could, according to all law and precedent, be done only on the request of the existing Government, having failed in utilizing the Queen's Cabinet, resorted to the new device of a committee of safety made up of Germans, British, Americans, and natives of foreign Islands.

 

With these leaders, subjects of the Hawaiian Islands, the American minister consulted freely as to the revolutionary movement and gave them assurance of protection from danger at the hands of the royal Government and forces.

 

On January 17, the following communication, prepared at the station house, which is one-third of a mile from the Government building and two-thirds of a mile from the residence of the American minister, was sent to him:

DEPARTMENT OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS, HONOLULU, January 17, 1893

 

To His EXCELLENCY JOHN L. STEVENS, Envoy Extraordinary and Minister Plenipotentiary

 

SIR: Her Hawaiian Majesty's Government, having been informed that certain persons to them unknown, have issued proclamation declaring a Provisional Government to exist in opposition to Her Majesty's Government, and having pretended to depose the Queen, her cabinet and marshal, and that treasonable persons at present occupy the Government building in Honolulu with an armed force, and pretending that your excellency, on behalf of the United States of America, has recognized such Provisional Government, Her Majesty's Cabinet asks respectfully, has your excellency recognized said Provisional Government, and, if not, Her Majesty's Government under the above existing circumstances respectfully requests the assistance of your Government in preserving the peace of the country.

 

We have the honor to be your excellency's obedient servants,

SAMUEL PARKER, Minister of Foreign Affairs

WM. H. CORNWELL, Minister of Finance

JOHN F. COLBURN, Minister of the Interior

A. P. PETERSON, Attorney-General

In it will be observed the declaration that the Provisional Government is claiming to have had his recognition. The reply of Mr. Stevens is not to he found in the records or files of the legation, but on those records appears the following entry:

UNITED STATES LEGATION, HONOLULU, January 17, 1893

 

About 4 to 5 P. M. of this date -am not certain of the precise time the note on file from the four ministers of the deposed Queen, inquiring if I had recognized the Provisional Government, came to my hands while I was lying sick on the couch.

 

Not far from 5 P. M. I did not think to look at my watch I addressed a short note to Hon. Samuel Parker, Hon. Wm. H. Cornwell, Hon. John F. Colburn, and Hon. A. P. Peterson, no longer regarding them as ministers, informing them that I had recognized the Provisional Government.

JOHN L. STEVENS, United States Minister

This communication was received at the station house and read by all of the ministers and by a number of other persons. After this Mr. Samuel M; Damon, the vice-president of the Provisional Government, and Mr. Bolte, a member of the advisory council, came to the station house and gave information of the proclamation and asked for the delivery up of the station house, the former urging that the government had been recognized by the American minister, and that any struggle would cause useless bloodshed.

 

The marshal declared that he was able to cope with the forces of the Provisional Government and those of the United States successfully if the latter interfered, and that he would not surrender except by the written order of the Queen. After considerable conference, the cabinet went with Messrs. Damon and Bolte to the Government building and met the Provisional Government, and there indicated a disposition to yield, but said that they must first consult with the Queen.

 

The members of the Queen's cabinet, accompanied by Mr. Damon, preceded by the police, and met the Queen. There were also present Messrs. H. A. Widemann, Paul Neumann, E. C. Macfarlane, J. O. Carter, and others.

 

As to what occurred there I invite your attention to the following statement, made by the vice-president of the Provisional Government, and certified by him to be correct:

Q. In that conversation you asked for a surrender of the forces and the ministers advised it?

A. The different ones spoke and they all recommended it. Each one spoke. At first Judge Wideman was opposed to it, but he finally changed his mind on the advice of Mr. Neumann. Mr. Neumann advised yielding. Each one advised it.

 

Q. Was the advice of Neumann and the cabinet based on the idea that the Queen would have to contend with the United States forces as well as the forces of the Provisional Government?

A. It was the Queen's idea that she could surrender pending a settlement at Washington, and it was on that condition that she gave up. If I remember right I spoke to her also. I said she could surrender or abdicate under protest.

 

Q. And that the protest would be considered at a later period at Washington?

A. At a later period. I knew it was the Queen's idea that Mr. Stevens was in sympathy with this movement.

 

Q. But I am asking now as to what reasons the ministers gave for her acquiescence?

A. It was their idea that it was useless to carry on: that it would be provocative of bloodshed and trouble if she persisted in the matter longer; that it was wiser for her to abdicate under protest and have a hearing at a later time; that the forces against her were too strong.

 

Q. Did they indicate the United States forces in any way?

A. I do not remember their doing so.

 

Q. Do you know whether or not at that time they were under the impression that the United States forces were in sympathy with the revolution?

A. Beyond an impression I know nothing definite.

 

Q. What was the result of this conference with the Queen? What was agreed on?

A. She signed a document surrendering her rights to the Provisional Government under protest. She was reluctant to agree to this, but was advised that the whole subject would come up for final consideration at Washington. I did tell her that she would have a perfect right to be heard at a later period.

 

Q. By the United States Government?

A. Yes.

All the persons present except Mr. Damon formally state and certify that in this discussion it was conceded by all that Mr. Stevens had recognized the Provisional Government. This Mr. Damon says he does not clearly recollect, but that he is under the impression that at that time the Provisional Government had been ecognized. Save Mr. Damon, these witnesses testify to the impression made on their minds and on that of the Queen that the American minister and the American naval commander were co-operating in the insurrectionary movement. As a result of the conference, there was then and there prepared the protest which has been cited.

 

The time occupied in this conference is indicated in the following language by Mr. Damon:

 

We went over (to the Palace) between 4 and 5 and remained until 6 discussing the situation.

 

Mr. Damon and the cabinet returned to the Provisional Government, presented the protest, and President Dole indorsed on the same:

Received by the hands of the late cabinet this 18th day of January, A. D. 1893

S. B. DOLE, Chairman of the Executive Council of Provisional Government

After this protest the Queen ordered the delivery of the station house, where was an important portion of the military forces, and the barracks, where was another force.

 

The statements of many witnesses at the station house and at the conference with the Queen, that the reply of Mr. Stevens to the cabinet on the subject of recognition had taken place, are not contradicted by Mr. Damon; but when inquired touching these matters, he uses such expressions as "I can not remember. It might have been so."

 

Mr. Damon says that he is under the impression that he knew when he went to this conference with the Queen that the recognition had taken place.

 

Mr. Bolte, another member of the Provisional Government, in a formal statement made and certified to by him, shows very much confusion of memory, but says: "I can not say what time in the day Mr. Stevens sent his recognition." He thinks it was after sunset.

 

Mr. Henry Waterhouse, another member of the Provisional Government, says: "We had taken possession of the barracks and station house before the recognition took place."

 

It will be observed that I have taken the communication of the Queen's ministers and the memorandum of Mr. Stevens as to his reply and the time thereof, to wit: "Not far from 5 p. m. I did not think to look at my watch."

 

This information was then transmitted to the station house, a distance of two-thirds of a mile, and before the arrival of Messrs. Damon and Bolte. This fact is supported by nine persons present at the interview with Mr. Damon and Mr. Bolte.

 

Then another period of time intervenes between the departure of Mr. Damon and Mr. Bolte. Then another period of time intervenes between the departure of Mr. Damon and the cabinet, passing over a distance of one-third of a mile to the Government Building. Then some further time is consumed in a conference with the Provisional Government before the departure of Mr. Damon . and the cabinet to the palace, were was the Queen. The testimony of all persons present proves that the recognition by Mr. Stevens had then taken place. Subsequent to the signing of the protest occurred the turning over of the military to the Provisional Government.

 

Inquiry as to the credibility of all these witnesses satisfies me as to their character for veracity, save one person, Mr. Colburn. He is a merchant, and it is said he makes misstatements in business transactions. No man can reasonably doubt the truth of the statements of the witnesses that Mr. Stevens had recognized the Provisional Government before Messrs. Damon and Bolte went to the station house.

 

Recurring to Mr. Stevens' statement as to the time of his reply to the letter of the cabinet, it does not appear how long before this reply he had recognized the Provisional Government.

 

Some witnesses fix it at three and some at half-past three. According to Mr. Damon he went over with the cabinet to meet the Queen between four and five, and taking into account the periods of time as indicated by the several events antecedent to this visit to the palace, it is quite probable that the recognition took place in the neighborhood of three o'clock. This would be within one-half hour from the time that Mr. Cooper commenced to read the proclamation establishing that Government, and allowing twenty minutes for its reading, in ten minutes thereafter the recognition must have taken place.

 

Assuming that the recognition took place at half-past three there was not at the Government building with the Provisional Government exceeding 60 raw soldiers.

 

In conversation with me Mr. Stevens said that he knew the barracks and station-house had not been delivered up when he recognized the Provisional Government; that he did not care anything about that, for 25 men, well armed, could have run the whole crowd.

 

There appears on the files of the legation this communication:

GOVERNMENT BUILDING, HONOLULU, January 17, 1893

 

His EXCELLENCY JOHN L. STEVENS, United States Minister Resident

 

SIR: I acknowledge receipt of your valued communication of this day, recognizing the Hawaiian Provisional Government, and express deep appreciation of the same.

 

We have conferred with the ministers of the late government and have made demand upon the marshal to surrender the station-house. We are not actually yet in possession of the station-house; but as night is approaching and our forces may be insufficient to maintain order, we request the immediate support of the United States forces, and would request that the commander of the U. S. forces take command of our military forces, so that they may act together for the protection of the city.

 

Respectfully yours,

SANFORD B. DOLE, Chairman Executive Council

After the recognition by Mr. Stevens, Mr. Dole thus informs him of his having seen the Queen's Cabinet and demanded the surrender of the forces at the station-house. This paper contains the evidence that before Mr. Dole had ever had any conference with the Queen's ministers, or made any demand for the surrender of her military forces, the Provisional Government had been recognized by Mr. Stevens.

 

On this paper is written the following:

"The above request not complied with STEVENS."

This is the only reference to it to be found on the records or among the files of the legation. This memorandum is not dated.

 

With the Provisional Government and its forces in a two-acre lot, and the Queen's forces undisturbed by their presence, this formal, dignified declaration on the part of the President of the Provisional Government to the American minister, after first thanking him for his recognition, informing him of his meeting with the Queen's cabinet and admitting that the stationhouse had not been surrendered, and stating that his forces may not be sufficient to maintain order, and asking that the American commander unite the forces of the United States with those of the Provisional Government to protect the city, is in ludicrous contrast with the declaration of the American minister in his previous letter of recognition that the Provisional Government was in full possession of the Government buildings, the archives, the treasury, and in control of the Hawaiian capital.

 

In Mr. Steven's dispatch to Mr. Foster, No. 79, January 18, 1893, is this paragraph:

"As soon as practicable a Provisional Government was constituted, composed of four highly respectable men, with Judge Dole at the head, he having resigned his place on the supreme bench to assume this responsibility. He was born in Honolulu of American parentage, educated here and in the United States, and is of the highest reputation among all citizens, both natives and whites. P. C. Jones is a native of Boston, Mass., wealthy, possessing property interests in the island, and a resident here for many years. The other two member are of the highest respectability. The committee of public safety forthwith took possession of the Government buildings, archives and treasury, and installed the Provisional Government at the heads of the respective departments. This being an accomplished fact, I promptly recognized the Provisional Government as the DE FACTO government of the Hawaiian Islands. The English minister, the Portuguese charge d'affaires, the French and the Japanese commissioners promptly did the same; these, with myself, being the only members of the diplomatic corps residing here."

Read in the light of what has immediately preceded, it is clear that he recognized the Provisional Government very soon after the proclamation of it was made. This proclamation announced the organization of the Government, its forms and officials. The quick recognition was the performance of his pledge to the committee of safety. The recognition by foreign powers, as herein stated, is incorrect. They are dated on the 18th, the day following that of Mr. Stevens.

 

On the day of the revolution neither the Portuguese charge d'affaires nor the French commissioner had any communication, written or oral, with the Provisional Government until after dark, when they went to the Government building to understand the situation of affairs. They did not then announce their recognition.

 

The British minister, several hours after Mr. Stevens' recognition, believing that the Provisional Government was sustained by the American minister and naval forces, and that the Queen's troops could not and ought not to enter into a struggle with the United States forces, and having so previously informed the Queen's cabinet, did go to the Provisional Government and indicate his purpose to recognize it.

 

I can not assure myself about the action of the Japanese commissioner. Mr. Stevens was at his home sick, and some one evidently misinformed him as to the three first.

 

In a letter of the Hawaiian commissioners to Mr. Foster, dated February 11, is this paragraph:

"Sixth. At the time the Provisional Government took possession of the Government buildings no American troops or officers were present or took part in such proceedings in any manner whatever. No public recognition was accorded the Provisional Government by the American minister until they were in possession of the Government buildings, the archives, and the treasury, supported by several hundred armed men and after the abdication by the Queen and the surrender to the Provisional Government of her forces."

Mark the words, "and after the abdication by the Queen and the surrender to the Provisional Government of her forces." It is signed L. A. Thurston, W. C. Wilder, William R. Castle, J. Marsden, and Charles L. Carter.

 

Did the spirit of annexation mislead these gentlemen. If not, what malign influence tempted President Dole to a contrary statement in his cited letter to the American minister?

 

The Government building is a tasteful structure, with ample space for the wants of a city government of 20,000 people. It is near the center of a 2-acre lot. In it the legislature and supreme court hold their sessions and the cabinet ministers have their offices.

 

In one corner of this lot in the rear is an ordinary two story structure containing eight rooms. This building was and the Government survey office. In another corner is a small wooden structure containing two rooms used by the board of health.

 

These constitute what is termed in the correspondence between the Provisional Government and the American minister and the government of the United States "government departmental buildings."

 

Whatever lack of harmony of statement as to time may appear in the evidence, the statements in documents and the consecutive order of events in which the witnesses agree, all do force us to but one conclusion that the American minister recognized the Provisional Government on the simple fact that it had entered a house designated sometimes as the Government building and sometimes as Aliiolani Hale (sic), which had never been regarded as tenable in military operations and was not so regarded by the Queen's officers in the disposition of their military forces, these being at the station house, at the palace, and at the barracks.

 

Mr. Stevens consulted freely with the leaders of the revolutionary movement from the evening of the 14th. These disclosed to him all their plans. They feared arrest and punishment. He promised them protection. They needed the troops on shore to overawe the Queen's supporters and Government. This he agreed to and did furnish. The had few arms and no trained soldiers. They did not mean to fight. It was arranged between them and the American minister that the proclamation dethroning the Queen and organizing a provisional government should be read from the Government building and he would follow it with a speedy recognition. All this was to be done with American troops provided with small-arms and artillery across a narrow street within a stone's throw. This was done.

 

Then commenced arguments and importunities to the military commander and the Queen that the United States had recognized the Provisional Government and would support it; that for them to persist involved useless bloodshed.

 

No soldier of the Provisional Government ever left the two acre lot.

 

The Queen finally surrendered, not to these soldiers and their leaders but to the Provisional Government on the conviction that the American minister and the American troops were promoters and supporters of the revolution, and that she could only appeal to the Government of the United States to render justice to her.

 

The leaders of the revolutionary movement would not have undertaken it but for Mr. Stevens' promise to protect them against any danger from the Government. But for this their mass meeting would not have been held. But for this no request to land the troops would have been made. Had the troops not been landed no measures for the organization of a new Government would have been taken.

 

The American minister and the revolutionary leaders had determined on annexation to the United States, and had agreed on the part each was to act to the very end.

 

Prior to 1887 two-thirds of the foreigners did not become naturalized. The Americans, British and Germans especially would not give up the protection of those strong governments and rely upon that of the Hawaiian Islands. To such persons the constitution of 1887 declared: "We need your vote to overcome that of our own native subjects. Take the oath to support the Hawaiian Government, with a distinct reservation of allegiance to your own." Two-thirds of the Europeans and Americans now voting were thus induced to vote in a strange country with the pledge that such act did not affect their citizenship to their native country. The purport and form of this affidavit appear in the citations from the constitution of 1887 and the form of oath of a foreign voter.

 

The list of registered voters of American and European origin, including Portuguese, discloses 3,715; 2,091 of this number are Portuguese. Only eight of these imported Portuguese have ever been naturalized in these islands. To this should be added 106 persons, mostly negroes, from the Cape Verde Islands, who came here voluntarily several years prior to the period of state importation of laborers.

 

The commander of the military forces of the Provisional Government on the day of the dethroning of the Queen and up to this hour has never given up his American citizenship, but expressly reserved the same in the form of oath already disclosed and by a continuous assertion of the same.

 

The advisory council of the Provisional Government, as established by the proclamation, consisted of John Emmeluth, an American, not naturalized; Andrew Brown, a Scotchman, not naturalized; C. Bolte, naturalized; James F. Morgan, naturalized; Henry Waterhouse, naturalized; S. M. Damon, native; W. G. Ashley, an American, not naturalized; E. D. Tenney, an American, not naturalized; F. M. McChesney, an American, not naturalized; W. C. Wilder, naturalized; J. A. McCandless, an American, not naturalized; W. R. Castle, a native; Lorrin A. Thurston, a native; F. J. Wilhelm, an American, not naturalized.

 

One-half of this body, then, was made up of persons owing allegiance to the United States and Great Britain.

 

The annexation mass meeting of the 16th of January was made up in this same manner.

 

On the 25th of February, 1843, under pressure of British naval forces, the King ceded the country to Lord George Paulet, "subject to the decision of the British Government after full information." That Government restored their independence. It made a deep impression on the native mind.

 

This national experience was recalled by Judge Widemann, a German of character and wealth, to the Queen to satisfy her that the establishment of the Provisional Government, through the action of Capt. Wiltse and Mr. Stevens, would be repudiated by the United States Government, and that she could appeal to it. Mr. Damon urged upon her that she would be entitled to such a hearing. He was the representative of the Provisional Government, and accepted her protest and turned it over to President Dole. This was followed by large expenditures from her private purse to present her cause and to invoke her restoration.

 

That a deep wrong has been done the Queen and the native race by American officials pervades the native mind and that of the Queen, as well as a hope for redress from the United States, there can be no doubt.

 

In this connection it is important to note the inability of the Hawaiian people to cope with any great powers, and their recognition of it by never offering resistance to their encroachments.

 

The suddenness of the landing of the United States troops, the reading of the proclamation of the Provisional Government almost in their presence, and the quick recognition by Mr. Stevens, easily prepared her to the suggestion that the President of the United States had no knowledge of these occurrences and must know of and approve or disapprove of what had occurred at a future time. This, too, must have contributed to her disposition to, accept the suggestions of Judge Widemann and Mr. Damon. Indeed, who could have supposed that the circumstances surrounding her could have been foreseen and sanctioned deliberately by the President of the United States.

 

Her uniform conduct and the prevailing sentiment amongst the natives point to her belief as well as theirs that the spirit of justice on the part of the President would restore her crown. The United States troops, it appears, were doing military duty for the Provisional Government before the protectorate was assumed, just as afterwards. The condition of the community at the time of the assumption of the protectorate was one of quiet and acquiescence, pending negotiations with the United States, so far as I have been able to learn.

 

A few days before my arrival here news of the withdrawal by the President from the Senate of the treaty of annexation and his purpose to send a commissioner to inquire into the revolution was received.

 

An organization known as the Annexation Club commenced to obtain signatures to a petition in favor of annexation. This work has been continued ever since.

 

The result is reported on July 9th, 1893, thus:

HEADQUARTERS ANNEXATION CLUB, HONOLULU, H. I. July 9th, 1893

 

HON. J. H. BLOUNT, U. S. E. E. & M. P.

 

In answer to your communication of May 1 would say that the names on our great register to date are 5,500 and that we are advised of 190 odd on rolls not yet entered on the other islands.

 

Of those which are entered I would estimate that 1,218 are Americans, being 90 odd percent of the total number of Americans on the islands and 20 odd per cent of those on the club rolls.

 

English 251, being 26 per cent of those on the islands and 4 per cent of club rolls.

 

One thousand and twenty-two Hawaiians, being 11 per cent of those on islands and 18 per cent of club rolls.

 

Two thousand two hundred and sixty-one Portuguese, being 73 per cent of Portuguese on islands and 41 per cent of club rolls.

 

Sixty-nine Norwegians, being 50 per cent of those on islands and 1 per cent of club rolls.

 

Three hundred and fifty-one Germans, being 53 per cent of those on islands and 6 per cent on club rolls.

 

Others, 328, unclassified.

 

I have the honor to be your obedient servant,

J. W. JONES, Secretary Annexation Club

The Portuguese have generally signed the annexation rolls. These, as I have already stated, are nearly all Portuguese subjects. A majority of the whites of American and European birth who have signed the same roll are not Hawaiian subjects and are not entitled to vote under any laws of the Kingdom.

 

The testimony of leading annexationists is that if the question of annexation were submitted to a popular vote, excluding all persons who could not read or write except foreigners (under the Australian ballot system, which is the law of the land) that annexation would be defeated.

 

From a careful inquiry I am satisfied that it would be defeated by a vote of at least two to one. If the votes of persons claiming allegiance to foreign countries were excluded, it would be defeated by more than five to one.

 

The undoubted sentiment of the people is for the Queen, against the Provisional Government and against annexation. A majority of the whites, especially Americans, are for annexation.

 

The native registered vote in 1890 was 9,700; the foreign vote was 3,893. This native vote is generally aligned against the annexation whites. No relief is hoped for from admitting to the right of suffrage the overwhelming Asiatic population. In this situation the annexation whites declare that good government is unattainable.

 

The controlling element in the white population is connected with the sugar industry. In its interest the Government here has negotiated treaties from time to time for the purpose of securing contract laborers for terms of years for the plantations, and paid out large sums for their transportation and for building plantation wharves, etc.

 

These contracts provide for compelling the laborer to work faithfully by fines and damage suits brought by the planters against them, with the right on the part of the planter to deduct the damages and cost of the suit out of the laborer's wages. They also provide for compelling the laborer to remain with the planter during the contract term. They are sanctioned by law and enforced by civil remedies and penal laws. The general belief amongst the planters at the so-called revolution was that, notwithstanding the laws against importing labor into the United States in the event of their annexation to that Government, these laws would not be made operative in the Hawaiian Islands on account of their peculiar conditions. Their faith in the building of a cable between Honolulu and San Francisco, and large expenditures at Pearl Harbor in the event of annexation have also as much to do with the desire for it.

 

In addition to these was the hope of escape from duties on rice and fruits and receiving he sugar bounty, either by general or special law.

 

The repeal of the duty on sugar in the McKinley act was regarded a severe blow to their interests, and the great idea of statesmanship has been to do something in the shape of treaties with the United States, reducing their duties on agricultural products of the Hawaiian Islands, out of which profits might be derived. Annexation has for its charm the complete abolition of all duties on their exports to the United States.

 

The annexationists expect the United States to govern the islands by so abridging the right of suffrage as to place them in control of the whites.

 

The Americans, of what is sometimes termed the better class, in point of intelligence, refinement, and good morals, are fully up to the best standard in American social life. heir homes are tasteful and distinguished for a generous hospitality. Education and religion receive at their hands zealous support. The remainder of them contain good people of the laboring class and the vicious characters of a seaport city. These general observations can be applied to the English and German population.

 

The native population, numbering in 1890, 40,622 persons, contained 27,901 able to read and write. No country in Europe, except perhaps Germany and England, can make such a showing. While the native generally reads and writes in native and English, he usually peaks the Kanaka language. Foreigners usually acquire it. The Chinese and Japanese learn to use it and know very little English.

 

Among the natives there is not a superior class, indicated by great wealth, enterprise, and culture, directing the race, as with the whites. This comes from several causes.

 

In the distribution of lands most of it was assigned to the King, chiefs, some whites, and to he Government for its support. Of the masses 11,132 persons received 27,830 acres about two and a half acres to an individual called Kuleanas. The majority received nothing. The foreigners soon traded the chiefs out of a large portion of their shares, and later purchased from the Government, government lands and obtained long leases on the crown lands. Avoiding details it must be said that the native never held much of the land. It is well known that it has been about seventy years since he commenced to emerge from idolatry and the simplicity of thought and habits and immoralities belonging to it. National tradition has done little for him, and before the whites led him to education its influence was not operative. Until within the last twenty years white leaders were generally accepted and preferred by the King in his election of cabinets, nobles, and judges, and native leadership was not wanted.

 

Their religious affiliations are with the Protestant and Catholic churches. They are overgenerous, hospitable, almost free from revenge, very courteous especially to females. heir talent for oratory and the higher branches of mathematics is unusually marked. In person they have large physique, good features and the complexion of the brown races. hey have been greatly advanced by civilization, but have done little towards its advancement. The small amount of thieving and absence of beggary are more marked than amongst the best races of the world. What they are capable of under fair conditions s an unsolved problem.

 

Idols and idol worship have long since disappeared.

 

The following observations in relation to population are presented, though some repetition will be observed:

 

The population of the Hawaiian Islands can best be studied, by one unfamiliar with the native tongue, from its several census reports. A census is taken every six years. The last report is for the year 1890. From this it appears that the whole population numbers 9,990. This number includes natives or, to use another designation, Kanakas, half-castes persons containing an admixture of other than native blood in any proportion with it), Hawaiian-born foreigners of all races or nationalities other than natives, Americans, ritish, Germans, French, Portuguese, Norwegians, Chinese, Polynesians, and other nationalities.

 

(In all the official documents of the Hawaiian Islands, whether in relation to population, ownership of property, taxation, or any other question, the designation "American," Briton," "German," or other foreign nationality does not discriminate between the naturalized citizens of the Hawaiian Islands and those owing allegiance to foreign countries.)

 

Americans number 1,928; natives and half-castes, 40,612; Chinese, 15,301; Japanese, 2,360; Portuguese, 8,602; British, 1,344; Germans, 1,034; French, 70; Norwegians, 27; Polynesians, 588, and other foreigners. 419.

 

It is well at this point to say that of the 7,495 Hawaiian-born foreigners 4,117 are Portuguese, 1,701 Chinese and Japanese, 1,617 other white foreigners, and 60 of other nationalities.

 

There are 58,714 males. Of these 18,364 are pure natives and 3,085 are half-castes, making together 21,449. Fourteen thousand five hundred and twenty-two 14,522) are Chinese. The Japanese number 10,079. The Portuguese contribute 4,770. These four nationalities furnish 50,820 of the male population.

 

The Americans 1,298

The British 982

The Germans 729

The French 46

The Norwegians 135

 

These five nationalities combined furnish 3,170 of the total male population.

 

The first four nationalities when compared with the last five in male population are nearly sixteenfold the largest in number.

 

The Americans are to those of the four aforementioned group of nationalities as 1 to 39 - nearly as 1 to 40.

 

Portuguese have been brought here from time to time from the Madeira and Azores Islands by the Hawaiian Government as laborers, on plantations, just as has been done in elation to Chinese, Japanese, Polynesians, etc. They are the most ignorant of all imported laborers, and reported to be very thievish. They are not pure Europeans, but a commingling of many races, especially the negro. Very few of them can read and write.

Their children are being taught in the public schools, as all races are. It is wrong to class them as Europeans.

 

The character of the people of these islands is and must be overwhelmingly Asiatic. Let it not be imagined that the Chinese, Japanese, and Portuguese disappear at the end of their contract term.

 

In 1890 the census report discloses that the only 4,695 persons owned real estate in these islands. With a population estimated at this time at 95,000, the vast number of landless people here is discouraging to the idea of immigrants from the United States being able to find encouragement in the matter of obtaining homes in these islands.

 

The landless condition of the native population grows out of the original distribution and not from shiftlessness. To them homesteads should be offered rather than to strangers.

 

The census reports of the Hawaiian Islands pretend to give the native population from the period when Capt. Cook was here until 1890. These show a rapid diminution in numbers, which, it is claimed, indicate the final extinction of the race. Very many of these reports are entirely conjectural and others are carelessly prepared. That of 1884 is believed by many intelligent persons here to overstate the native strength and, of course, to discredit any comparison with that of 1890.

 

All deductions from such comparisons -arc discredited by an omission to consider loss from emigration. Jarves, in his history of the Hawaiian Islands,- published in 1847, says:

 

"Great numbers of healthy Hawaiian youths have left in whale ships and other vessels and never returned.

The number annually afloat is computed at 3,000. At one time 400 were counted at Tahiti, 500 in Oregon, 50 at Paita, Peru, besides unknown numbers in Europe and the United States."

 

In 1850 a law was passed to prohibit natives from leaving the islands. The reason for it is stated in the following preamble.

 

"Whereas, by the census of the islands taken in 1849, the population decreased at the rate of 8 per cent in 1848, and by the census taken in 1850 the population decreased at the rate of 5^ per cent in 1849; whereas the want of labor is severely felt by planters and other agriculturists, whereby the price of provisions and other produce has been unprecedentedly enhanced, to the great prejudice of the islands; whereas, many natives have emigrated to California and there died in great misery; and, whereas, it is desirable to prevent such loss to the nation and such wretchedness to individuals, etc."

 

This act remained in force until 1887. How effective it was when it existed there is no means of ascertaining. How much emigration of the native race has taken place since its repeal does not appear to have been inquired into by the Hawaiian Government. Assuming that there has been none and that the census tables are correct, except that of 1884, the best opinion is that the decrease in the native population is slight now and constantly less. Its final extinction, except by amalgamation with Americans, Europeans, and Asiatics, may be dispensed with in all future calculations.

 

My opinion, derived from official data and the judgment of intelligent persons, is that it is not decreasing now and will soon increase.

 


Members if the Constitutional Convention of 1894 

 

The foregoing pages are respectfully submitted as the connected report indicated in your instructions. It is based upon the statements of individuals and the examination of public documents. Most of these are hereto annexed.

 

The partisan feeling naturally attaching to witnesses made it necessary for me to take time for forming a correct judgment as to their character. All this had to be done without the counsel of any other person.

 

Mindful of my liability to error in some matters of detail, but believing in the general correctness of the information reported and conclusions reached, I can only await the judgment of others.

 

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JAMES H. BLOUNT, Special Commissioner of the United States

 

Report of the Senate Committee on Foreign Affairs in Relation to the Hawaiian Islands

 

Mr. Morgan submitted the following report from the Committee on Foreign Relations:

 

The following resolution of the Senate defines the limits of the authority of the committee in the investigation and report it is required to make:

"Resolved, That the Committee on Foreign Relations shall inquire and report whether any, and if so, what irregularities have occurred in the diplomatic or other intercourse between the United States and Hawaii in relation to the recent political revolution in Hawaii, and to this end said committee is authorized to send for persons and papers and to administer oaths to witnesses."

The witnesses were examined under oath when it was possible to secure their appearance before the committee, though in some instances affidavits were taken in Hawaii and other places, and papers of a scientific and historic character will be appended to this report and presented to the Senate for its consideration.

 

The committee did not call the Secretary of State, or any person connected with the Hawaiian Legation, to give testimony. It was not thought to be proper to question the diplomatic authorities of either government on matters that are, or have been, the subject of negotiation between them, and no power exists to authorize the examination of the minister of a foreign government in an}' proceeding without his consent.

 

The resolutions include an inquiry only into the intercourse between the two governments, and regard the conduct of the officers of the United States as a matter for domestic consideration in which Hawaii is not concerned, unless it be that their conduct had some unjust and improper influence upon the action of the people or Government of that country in relation to the revolution.

 

The future policy of the two governments as to annexation, or in respect of any other matter, is excluded by the resolutions from the consideration of the committee, and such matters are alluded to only as being incidental to the investigation which was ordered by the Senate.

 

The inquiry as to irregularities that may have occurred in our diplomatic or other intercourse with Hawaii must relate, first, to the conduct of the Government as shown in its official acts and correspondence; and. second, the conduct of its civil and military officers while they were engaged in the discharge of their public duties and functions.

 

As a Government dealing with Hawaii and with any form of government in that country, whether de facto or de jure, the United States can have no separation or break in its line of policy corresponding to any change in the incumbency of the office of President. It is in all respects as much the same government in every right and responsibility as if it had been under the same President during the entire period covered by the recent revolution in Hawaii and the succeeding events.

 

This view of the situation will enable us to examine more dispassionately the conduct of our Government, and to ascertain whether it has been such that it can be safely drawn into precedent in any future questions that may arise in our intercourse with this or other American governments.

 

The right of the President of the United States to change his opinions and conduct respecting a course of diplomatic correspondence with a foreign government is no more to be questioned than his right to institute such correspondence; and it cannot be assumed that the opinions of one President, differing from those of his predecessor, have any other effect upon the attitude of the Government than would follow a change of opinion in the mind of the same person if there had been no change in the incumbency of the office. This is a view of the situation in which all foreign nations may have an interest, and the usages of independent powers and the international laws. But the question now under consideration is regarded as being peculiar to what we may term the American system, It may be true that Hawaii can not be considered as a separate and independent power in respect of all its relations with the United States, yet the acts of successive Presidents of the United States which affect it must be regarded as the acts of one President. But there are many good reasons and a long and consistent course of dealing between the United States and Hawaii that materially affect, if they do not entirely change, the actual relations between Hawaii and the United States and make them exceptional. When we claim the right to interfere in the domestic affairs of Hawaii, as we would not interfere with those of a European nation, we must also admit her right to whatever advantages there may be in the closeness and interdependence of our relations, and her right to question us as to any conflicts of policy between Mr. Harrison and Mr. Cleveland that may be justly said to work a disadvantage to the interests of Hawaii, if there are any.

 

And another principle which does not apply in our dealings with European powers comes into application in this case to influence the rights of Hawaii in her intercourse with the United States.

 

Hawaii is an American state, and is embraced in the American commercial and military system. This fact has been frequently and firmly stated by our Government, and is the ground on which is rested that peculiar and far-reaching declaration so often and so earnestly made, that the United States will not. admit the right of any foreign government to acquire any interest or control in the Hawaiian Islands that is in any way prejudicial or even threatening toward the interests of the United States or her people. This is at least a moral suzerainty over Hawaii. In this attitude of the two Governments, Hawaii must be entitled to demand of the United States an indulgent consideration, if not an active sympathy, when she is endeavoring to accomplish what every other American state has achieved the release of her people from the odious anti-republican regime which denies to the people the right to govern themselves, and subordinates them to the supposed divine right of a monarch, whose title to such divinity originated in the most slavish conditions of pagan barbarity.

 

The point at which it is alleged that there was a questionable interference by our Minister and our navy with the affairs of Hawaii was the landing of troops from the ship Boston, in Honolulu, on the 16th day of January, 1893, at 5 o'clock in the afternoon. That ship, on which the Minister was a passenger, had been off on a practice cruise at Hilo, a distance of nearly 100 miles, since the 4th day of January. On her return to the harbor a condition of affairs existed in Honolulu which led naturally to the apprehension that violence or civil commotion would ensue, in which the peace and security of American citizens residing in that city would be put in peril, as had been done on three or more separate occasions previously when changes occurred or were about to occur in the government of Hawaii. Whatever we may conclude were the real causes of the situation then present in Honolulu, the fact is that there was a complete paralysis of executive government in Hawaii.

 

The action of the Queen in an effort to overturn the constitution of 1887, to which she had sworn obedience and support, had been accepted and treated by a large and powerful body of the people as a violation of her constitutional obligations, revolutionary in its character and purposes, and that it amounted to an act of abdication on her part, so far as her powers and the rights of the people under the constitution of 1887 were concerned.

 

This state of opinion and this condition of the executive head of the Hawaiian Government neutralized its power to protect American citizens and other foreigners in their treaty rights, and also their rights under the laws of Hawaii. There was not in Honolulu at that time any efficient executive power through which the rights of American citizens residing there could be protected in accordance with the local laws. It is evident that the Queen's Government at that time had no power to prevent the landing of troops from any quarter, no power to protect itself against invasion, no power to conduct civil government, so far as the executive was concerned, if the effort to exert such power was antagonized by any opposing body of people in considerable numbers. Indeed, no effort seems to have been made to exert the civil authority except through the presence of a small and inefficient- body of policemen. The authority of the Queen was not respected by the people: it was opposed, and no force appeared to be used for the purpose of overcoming the opposition. It yielded to a silent but ominous opposition. Without reference to the question whether, in strict law, the action of the Queen in her effort to overturn the Constitution of 1887, and to substitute one by a proclamation which she had prepared, was a revolution in government, or an effort at revolution, or amounted to an actual abdication, the result was that an interregnum existed.

 

If we give full effect to the contention that this interregnum occurred because of the apprehensions of the Queen that force would be used by the United States to compel her abdication, those apprehensions could not have occurred before the landing of the troops from the Boston, or, if they existed, they were idle, unfounded, and unjust toward the United States. It was her conduct, opposed by her people, or a large portion of them, that paralyzed the executive authority and left the citizens of the United States in Honolulu without the protection of any law, unless it was such as should be extended to them by the American Minister, in conjunction with the arms of the United States then on board the Boston.

 

It will appear hereafter in this report that there is well settled authority for the position that at the moment when the Queen made public her decision to absolve herself from her oath to support the constitution of 1887 her abdication was complete, if the people chose so to regard it. That constitution and the Queen's oath to support it was the only foundation for her regal authority, and, when she announced that her oath was annulled in its effect upon her own conscience, she could no longer rightfully hold office under that constitution. In such matters the word of the Queen, once sedately uttered, fixes a condition that is irrevocable, unless by the consent of those whose condition or rights would be injuriously affected by its subsequent withdrawal; as in the case of a voluntary abdication in favor of a named successor; or of a pardon granted to a person accused or convicted of crime; or the signature to a legislative act. or declaration of war. The official act of the chief executive of a nation is uniformly regarded as creating a condition or status which can not be altered or revoked at pleasure. Indeed, in every case, the word of the king that works a change in existing conditions is the final act of the king. In the crime of treason and the misprision of treason, the word that is spoken by the culprit though quickly repented of or recalled, has completed the crime and placed the offender beyond the reach of all mercy except that of the sovereign power. In this instance the sovereign power to pardon or condone the Queen's offense resided in the people, and they have so far decided and have adhered to the decision that her abdication was complete. The recantation was two days later than the completed crime and was temporary and conditional, and, in the meantime, popular sovereignty had risen to the assertion of its rights, an indignant resentment had aroused the people, and a. large body of citizens claiming to represent them had inaugurated a government of the people and for the people.

 

Whether the people opposing the Queen were strengthened in their purpose to accept and act upon this abandonment by the Queen of her obligations to keep her oath to support and obey the constitution by the presence of the troops of the United States, or whether the Queen was dismayed by their presence and was deterred from supporting her criminal act by the employment of her household soldiery, did not alter the fact that she had openly renounced the Constitution of 1887 before the troops were landed or any preparation was made or any order was issued to land them, and the people were preparing to substitute the monarchy, which was still existing in the constitution, by a ruler of their own choice before any troops left the Boston.

 

Whether the people would permit the restoration of the Queen, or whether they would constitute a new executive head of the Government of Hawaii, was a matter then undetermined, and as to that the Government of the United States had but one concern, and that was that the interregnum should be ended, the executive head of the Government should be supplied, and the laws of Hawaii and the treaty rights of American citizens should have full effect, peacefully, in the protection of their rights and interests. When the Queen found that her Government was opposed by a strong body of the people she did not attempt to reassemble the Legislature, but left the public safety in charge of a committee of thirteen men organized by those who were endeavoring to preserve the peace and to restore the Government to its full constitutional powers by choosing an executive head. This condition of things continued from Saturday until the succeeding Tuesday, during all of which time the citizens of the United States residing in Honolulu had no protection of law, except such as was guaranteed to them by the presence of the Boston in the bay of Honolulu, or the moral influence of the American Legation and Consulate.

 

When the Kamehameha dynasty ended, the monarchy in Hawaii was doomed to a necessary dissolution. The five kings of that family, assisted by their premiers, who were Kanaka women, and by such missionaries as Judd, Bingham, Chamberlain, Coan, Goodrich and Damon, maintained the progress of civilization and prosperity, but when Kalakaua was elected king, the most surprising and disgraceful corruptions infected the Government. Without detailing in this report the constant decline from bad to worse, which the evidence discloses, without contradiction or explanation, when Liliuokalani was enthroned the monarchy was a mere shell and was in a condition to crumble on the slightest touch of firm opposition. Under her brief rule, it was kept alive by the care and forbearing tolerance of the conservative white people, who owned $50,000,000 of the property in Hawaii, until they saw that the Queen and her party had determined to grasp absolute power and destroy the constitution and the rights of the white people. When they were compelled to act in self-defense the monarchy disappeared. It required nothing but the determined action of what was called the missionary party to prostrate the monarchy, and that action had been taken before the troops from the Boston landed.

 

There was then no executive head of the Government of Hawaii; it had perished.

 

In landing the troops from the Boston there was no demonstration of actual hostilities, and their conduct was as quiet and as respectful as it had been on many previous occasions when they were landed for the purpose of drill and practice. In passing the palace on their way to the point at which they were halted, the Queen appeared upon the balcony and the troops respectfully saluted her by presenting arms and dipping the flag, and made no demonstration of any hostile intent. Her attitude at that time was that of helplessness, because she found no active or courageous support in her isolated position, which was self-imposed and was regretted by few of her former subjects. In this condition of Hawaii the laws for the protection of life and property were, in fact, suspended so far as the executive power was concerned, and the citizens of the United States in Honolulu and all the islands, and their property rights, were virtually outlawed. The citizens of Honolulu were not held amenable to the civil authorities, but were treated by the Queen, as well as by the people, as if the country was in a state of war. A policeman was shot down on the streets by a person who was conducting a wagon loaded with arms to the place of rendezvous where the people had assembled, and no action was taken for the purpose of arresting or putting on trial the man who did the shooting.

 

In a country where there is no power of the law to protect the citizens of the United States, there can be no law of nations nor any rule of comity that can rightfully prevent our flag from giving shelter to them under the protection of our arms, and this without reference to any distress it may give to the Queen who generated the confusion, or any advantage it might give to the people who are disputing her right to resume or to hold her regal powers. In every country where there is no effective chief executive authority, whether it is a newly-discovered island where only savage government prevails, or one where the government is paralyzed by internal feuds, it is the right, claimed and exercised by all civilized nations, to enter such a country with sovereign authority to assert and protect the rights of its citizens and their property, and to remain there without the invitation of anybody until civil government shall have been established that is adequate, in a satisfactory sense for their protection.

 

The committee agree that such was the condition of the Hawaiian Government at the time that the troops were landed in Honolulu from the steam warship Boston; that there was then an interregnum in Hawaii as respects the executive office; that there was no executive power to enforce the laws of Hawaii, and that it was the right of the United States to land troops upon those islands at any place where it was necessary in the opinion of our minister to protect our citizens.

 

In what occurred in landing the troops at Honolulu there may have been an invasion, but ft was not an act of war, nor did it create that condition of the public law in Hawaii.

 

In the period of reconstruction, as it is called, which followed the civil war of 1861-'65 in the United States, a very similar condition existed, or was assumed to exist, which caused Congress to provide for vacating gubernatorial offices in several of the Southern States and filling them by appointments of the President.

 

In these States strong military bodies were stationed and general officers of the Army took command and enforced the laws found on their statute books and also the laws of the United States. All the civil officers in those sovereign States were required to obey the commands of those Army officers, and they did so, often under protest, but with entire submission to the military power and authority of the President, exerted through the instrumentality of the Army. That was not war. Yet it was the presence of military force, employed actively in the enforcement of the civil laws, and in full supremacy over the civil authority.

 

The only reason that could justify this invasion of sovereign States by the armies of the United States was the declaration by Congress that the executive governments in those States were not in the lawful possession of the incumbents; that there was an interregnum in those States as to the office of governor. If the Queen, or the people, or both acting in conjunction, had opposed landing of the troops from the Boston with armed resistance, their invasion would have been an act of war. But when their landing was not opposed by any objection, protest, or resistance the state of war did not supervene, and there was no irregularity or want of authority to place the troops on shore.

 

In this view of the facts there is no necessity for inquiring whether Minister Stevens or Capt. Wiltse. in arranging for the landing of the troops, had any purpose either to aid the popular movement against the Queen that was then taking a definite and decisive shape, or to promote the annexation of the Hawaiian Islands to the United States. But justice to these gentlemen requires that we should say that the troops from the Boston were not sent into Honolulu for any other purpose than that set forth fully and fairly in the following order from Capt. Wiltse to the officer in command of the detachment:

U. S. S. BOSTON, (SECOND RATE), HONOLULU, HAWAIIAN ISLANDS, Jan. 16, 1893

 

LIEUT. COMMANDER W. T. SWINBURNE, U. S. Navy, Executive Officer, U. S. Boston.

 

SIR: You will take command of the battalion and land in Honolulu for the purpose of protecting our legation, consulate, and the lives and property of American citizens, and to assist in preserving public order.

 

Great prudence must be exercised by both officers and men, and no action taken that is not fully warranted by the condition of affairs and by the conduct of those who may be inimical to the treaty rights of American citizens.

 

You will inform me at the earliest practicable moment of any change in the situation.

 

Very respectfully,

G. C. WILTSE, Captain, U. S. Navy, Commanding U. S. Boston

As between the United States and Hawaii, as separate and independent governments, that order defines the full liability of the Government of the United States in respect of landing the troops at Honolulu. As between the Government of the United States and its officers, the question may arise whether that order was issued in good faith and for the purposes declared upon its face, or whether it was a pretext used for the purpose of assisting in the overthrow of the Queen's Government and the ultimate annexation of Hawaii to the United States.

 

In reference to this last suggestion, the committee, upon the evidence as it appears in their report (which they believe is a full, fair and impartial statements of the facts attending and precedent to the landing of the troops), agree that the purposes of Capt. Wiltse and of Minister Stevens were only those which were legitimate, viz: the preservation of law and order to the extent of preventing a disturbance of the public peace which might, in the absence of the troops, injuriously affect the rights of the American citizens resident in Honolulu.

 

The troops from the Boston having rightfully entered Honolulu, and having carried with them the protection of the laws of the United States for their citizens who otherwise were left without the protection of law, it was the right of the United States that they should remain there until a competent chief executive of Hawaii should have been installed in authority to take upon himself the civil power and to execute the necessary authority to provide for the protection of all the rights of citizens of the United States then in Honolulu, whether such rights were secured by treaty or were due to them under the laws of Hawaii. It was the further right of the officers representing the United States in Hawaii to remain there with the troops until all the conditions were present to give full assurance of security to the rights of all the citizens of the United States then in Honolulu.

 

Before the landing of the troops a committee of safety had been organized that sent a request to the commander of the Boston that troops should be landed for the purpose of preserving the public peace. To this request no response was made, and later in the day the commander of the Boston was informed that the committee of safety had withdrawn its request and then desired that no troops should be landed. But, disregarding all the action of the committee of safety and acting only upon his sense of duty to the people of the United States who were in Honolulu, Capt. Wiltse came to the conclusion that the troops should be landed, and he put them in a state of preparation for that purpose by lowering the boats, filling the cartridge belts of the men, and supplying them with proper accouterments for a stay on shore. After these preparations had been completed Minister Stevens went on board the ship (on Monday), and had an interview with Capt. Wiltse. The evidence shows that this interview related alone to the question of the preservation of law and order in Hawaii and the protection of Americans in their treaty rights. It seem that neither Minister Stevens nor Capt. Wiltse then fully comprehended the fact that the United States had the right, of its own authority, to send the troops on shore for the purpose of supplying to American citizens resident there the protection of law, which had been withdrawn or annulled, because of the fact that there was then an interregnum in the executive department of the Government of Hawaii. The rights of the United States at that moment were greater than they were supposed to be by Minister Stevens or Capt. Wiltse, and they were not the result of treaty rights or obligations, but of that unfailing right to give protection to citizens of the United States in any country where they may be found, when the local authorities have, through their own mismanagement or contrivance, rendered nugatory the power of the government to perform its proper duties in the protection of their lives, property and peace.

 

A further statement of ascertained facts may be necessary in order to bring out more clearly the situation in Hawaii on Saturday, the 14th day of January, and to render more conspicuous the justification of the United States in entering with its troops upon the soil of Hawaii for the protection of all the rights of its citizens.

 

On Saturday afternoon and Sunday earnest and decisive steps were being taken by the people of Honolulu who were most prominent in social influence and in commerce and the professions, to arm the people who resented the disloyalty of the Queen to the constitution and to install a new executive head of the Government. This movement had resulted in the organization of a committee of safety, that proposed a programme for the purpose of inaugurating a Provisional Government. This was an open, public movement, which the Queen took no steps to suppress. No arrests were made, and even the apprehension of arrests seems to have been almost entirely absent from the minds of the people engaged in this movement. An effort was made to divert those people from their purpose, on Monday morning, by the Queen and her ministers, who caused the following notice to be posted on the streets of Honolulu:

"BY AUTHORITY"

 

"Her Majesty's ministers desire to express their appreciation for the quiet and order which have prevailed in this community since the events of Saturday, and are authorized to say that the position taken by her Majesty in regard to the promulgation of a new constitution was under the stress of her native subjects.

 

"Authority is given for the assurance that any changes desired in the fundamental law of the land will be sought only by the methods provided in the constitution itself. " Her Majesty's ministers request all citizens to accept the assurance of Her Majesty in the same spirit in which it is given."

This paper purported to be signed by the Queen and her ministers, Samuel Parker, minister of foreign affairs; W. H. Cornwell, minister of finance; John F. Colburn, minister of the inferior; and A. P. Peterson, attorney-general.

 

The Queen did not sign it in her official character by affixing the letter R to her name, and the tenor of the paper indicates that it was, in fact, the act of her ministers, to which she had not given her royal assent and pledge. This paper in itself contains undeniable evidence that the Queen had instituted a coup d'état on Saturday by the promulgation of "a new constitution," as far, at least, as she could bind herself by such an act, and that she offered the excuse for this revolt against the existing constitution which she had sworn to support, that she had acted "under stress of her native subjects."

 

Passing by the fact that the existence of this "stress" is not established by any satisfactory evidence, the reference to it in this proclamation discloses her willing connection with the purpose to disfranchise her foreign-born subjects, that being the effect of the provisions of the " new constitution " that she in fact promulgated, so far as she could, but hesitated to swear to for the want of sufficient support from "her native subjects."

 

The assurance given that future efforts "to change" the constitution of 1887 should be conducted only in the method therein prescribed, was no assurance that her foreign-born subjects should be protected in their vital liberties. To the reverse, it was a continuing threat that they should be disfranchised and placed at the mercy of the racial aggression, backed by the power of the crown. The declaration of the Queen made in person to Minister Willis, on three occasions, and at long intervals of time after the lapse of nine months of sedate reflection, show that this assurance, given in fact by her ministers, was only a thin disguise of her real purpose to drive out the white population and ^confiscate their property, and, if need be, to destroy their lives. The people made no mistake as to her animosity toward them, and proceeded in the same orderly manner, for which the ministers gave them thanks in this proclamation, to designate an executive head of the Government in place of the abdicated Queen, the abdication being completed and confirmed by the only authentic expression of the popular will, and by the recognition of the Supreme Court of Hawaii.

 

Another fact of importance connected with the situation at that time is that a committee of law and order, consisting of supporters of the Queen, had on Monday morning posted in public places in Honolulu the following call for a public meeting and explanation of the purposes of the Queen in abrogating the constitution of 1887 and in substituting one which she desired and attempted to promulgate by their authority as the organic law of the land. This proclamation was printed in the Hawaiian language, and a translation of it is appended to this report. It was printed in an extra edition of a newspaper called the Ka Leo o Ka Lahui, published in Honolulu in the Hawaiian language.

 

"The stress of her native subjects," which is mentioned by the Queen in the proclamation which was

posted in English on the morning of January 16, is evidently expressed in the terms of this announcement and call, and it shows that it was based upon racial distinction and prejudice entirely, and indicates the feeling of resentment and controversy which, if carried into effect as the Queen proposed to carry it into effect under the constitution which she intended to proclaim, would have resulted in the destruction of the rights of property and lives of those persons who were styled "missionaries" and their posterity, from whom Hawaii had derived her enlightened civilization, Christianity, constitution, laws, progress, wealth and position amongst the nations of the earth.

 

This was a threat of dangerous significance, and it shows the spirit of the controversy that was then pervading the minds of the people of Honolulu, and illustrates how easy it was to foment strife that would result in the worst of evils, in a community thus divided and thus excited. The abuse of the missionaries and missionary party in this call shows that the Queen and her immediate followers had concentrated their efforts upon the disfranchisement of all white people in Hawaii, and the return of the government to that condition of debasement from which these very people and their fathers had relieved it.

 

The second paragraph in this call is as follows:

"THE VOICE OF THE CHIEF."

 

On the afternoon of Saturday last the voice of the Sacred Chief of Hawaii, Liliuokalani, the tabued one, speaking as follows:

 

"O, ye people who love the Chief, I hereby say to you, I am now ready to proclaim the new constitution for my Kingdom, thinking that it would be successful, but behold obstacles have arisen. Therefore I say unto you, loving people, go with good hope and do not be disturbed or troubled in your minds. Because, within the next few days now coming, I will proclaim the new constitution.

 

"The executive officers of the law (the cabinet) knew the errors in this constitution, but they said nothing.”

 

"Therefore I hope that the thing which you, my people, so much want will be accomplished; it also is my strong desire."

Here is a direct accusation by the Queen against her cabinet, all of whom with one exception, were white men, that they had misled her as to the effect of the constitution, and had failed to point out errors in it which, as a pretext, led to its rejection by them, causing them to refuse at the last moment to join with her in its promulgation. This call was, in fact, a new promise which was made by the Queen, with the evident consent of her immediate native followers, that within the next few days now coming she would proclaim the new constitution, notwithstanding her failure to give it a successful promulgation on the preceding Saturday. The intensity of the Queen's opposition to the missionaries and the white people was caused by her intention that the Kingdom should return to its former absolute character, and that the best results of civilization in Hawaii should be obliterated.

 

Civilization and constitutional government in Hawaii are the foster children of the American Christian missionaries. It can not be justly charged to the men and women who inaugurated this era of humanity, light and justice in these islands that either they or their posterity or their followers, whether native or foreign, have faltered in their devotion to their exalted purposes. They have not pursued any devious course in their conduct, nor have they done any wrong or harm to the Hawaiian people or their native rulers. They have not betrayed any trust confided to them, nor have they encouraged any vice or pandered to any degrading sentiment or practice among those people. Among the native Hawaiians, where they found paganism in the most abhorrent forms of idolatry, debauchery, disease, ignorance and cruelty seventy-five years ago, they planted and established, with the free consent and eager encouragement of those natives and without the shedding of blood, the Christian ordinance of marriage, supplanting polygamy; a reverence for the character of women and a respect for their rights; the Christian Sabbath and freedom of religious faith and worship, as foundations of society and of the state; universal education, including the kings and the peasantry; temperance in place of the orgies of drunkenness that were all-pervading; and the separate holding of lands upon which the people built their homes. In doing these benevolent works the American missionary did not attempt to assume the powers and functions of political government. As education, enlightenment, and the evident benefits of civilization revealed to those in authority the necessity of wise and faithful counsels in building up and regulating the government, to meet those new conditions, the kings invited some of the best qualified and most trusted of these worthy men to aid them in developing and conducting the civil government. As a predicate for this work they freely consented to and even suggested the giving up of some of their absolute powers and to place others under the constraint of constitutional limitations. They created an advisory council and a legislature and converted Hawaii from an absolute despotism into a land of law. The cabinet ministers thus chosen from the missionary element were retained in office during very long periods, thus establishing the confidence of the kings and the people in their integrity, wisdom and loyalty to the Government. No charge of defection, or dishonesty was ever made against any of these public servants during the reign of the Kamehamehas, nor indeed at any time.

 

They acquired property in moderate values by honest means, and labored to exhibit to the people the advantages of industry, frugality, economy and thrift.

 

The progressive elevation of the country and of the people from the very depravity of paganism into an enlightened and educated commonwealth and the growth of their industries and wealth will be seen at a glance in the statements of the most important events and in the tables showing the most important results of their work and influence, which are set forth in the evidence accompanying this report. This array of undisputed facts shows that, with Christianity and education as the basis, there has come over Hawaii the most rapid and successful improvement in political, industrial and commercial conditions that has marked the course of any people in Christendom.

 

In the message of President Tyler to Congress he says:

"The condition of those islands has excited a good deal of interest, which is increasing by every successive proof that their inhabitants are making progress in civilization and becoming more and more competent to maintain regular and orderly government. They lie in the Pacific Ocean, much nearer to this continent than the other, and have become an important place for the refitment and provisioning of American and European vessels.

 

"Owing to their locality and to the course of the winds which prevail in this quarter of the world the Sandwich Islands are the stopping place for almost all vessels passing from continent to continent across the Pacific Ocean. They are especially resorted to by the great numbers of vessels of the United States which are engaged in the whale fishery in those seas. The number of vessels of all sorts and the amount of property owned by citizens of the United States which are found in those islands in the course of a year are stated probably with sufficient accuracy in the letter of the agents.

 

"Just emerging from a state of barbarism, the "Government of the islands is as yet feeble; but its dispositions appear to be just and pacific, and it seems anxious to improve the conditions of its people by the introduction of knowledge, of religious and moral institutions, means of education, and the arts of civilized life."

In the House of Representatives this subject was referred to the Committee on Foreign Affairs, and Hon. John Q. Adams, in concluding his report upon the subject, says:

"It is a subject of cheering contemplation to the friends of human improvement and virtue that, by the mild and gentle influence of Christian charity, dispensed by humble missionaries of the gospel, unarmed with secular power, within the last quarter of a century the people of this group of islands have been converted from the lowest debasement of idolatry to the blessings of the Christian gospel; united under one balanced government; rallied to the fold of civilization by a written language and constitution, providing security for the rights of persons, property, and mind, and invested with all the elements of right and power which can entitle them to be acknowledged by their brethren of the human race as a separate and independent community. To the consummation of their acknowledgment the people of the North American Union are urged by an interest of their own deeper than that of any other portion of the inhabitants of the earth lay a virtual right of conquest, not over the freedom of their brother man by the brutal arm of physical power, but over the mind and heart by the celestial panoply of the gospel of peace and love."

It can not be other than a proud reflection of the American people that the free institutions of the United States gave origin and impulsive zeal, as well as guidance, to the good men who laid these foundations of civil government in Hawaii upon written constitutions supported by the oaths of those in authority and loyally sustained by those of the people who are virtuous and intelligent. Nor can the American people condemn the firm adhesion of those whose rights are guaranteed by constitutional law in Hawaii to the demand that is now made for the maintenance of its permanent integrity. If nothing but a decent respect for our national example was in question, if there was no question in Hawaii that concerned the people of the United States except that of a relapse of that Government into absolute monarchy, if there was no degradation of society involved in this falling away, no destruction of property and liberty in contemplation, there would still be enough in the conditions now presented there to excite the most anxious interest of our people. Citizens of the United States with wisdom, charity, Christian faith and a love of constitutional government, have patiently, laboriously, and honestly built up Hawaii into a civilized power under a written constitution, and they can justly claim the sympathy and assistance of all civilized people in resisting its destruction, either to gratify a wanton lust of absolute power on the part of the Queen, or the abuse of its authority in fostering vice and rewarding crime.

 

The facts of recent history present broadly and distinctly the question between an absolute and corrupt monarchy in Hawaii, and a government in which the rights and liberties guaranteed by a written constitution shall be respected and preserved.

 

The facts do not show that the people who built up this constitutional system and have based upon it wholesome laws and a well balanced and well guarded plan of administration have had any desire to abrogate the organic laws, corrupt the statute laws, or to dethrone the Queen. In every phase of their dealings with these questions their course has been conservative, and the defense of their lives, liberty and property, and the honest administration of the government has been the real motive of their actions. They are not, therefore, to be justly classed as conspirators against the Government. That they turn their thoughts toward the United States and desire annexation to this country could not be denied without imputing to them the loss of the sentiment of love and reverence for this Republic that is utterly unknown to our people.

 

On Monday, the 16th of January, 1893, Hawaii was passing through the severe ordeal of a trial which was conducted by the people who arrayed themselves on the side of the Queen and those who were organized in opposition to her revolutionary purposes. The Queen seems to have abandoned the controversy into the hands of the people, and made no effort to suppress the meeting of the citizens opposed to her revolutionary proceedings by calling out her troops to disperse the meeting or to arrest its leaders. Both the meetings were quiet and orderly, but the meeting at the arsenal was intensely earnest, and men were heard to express their opinions freely and without interruption at both meetings, and they came to their resolutions without disturbance. When these meetings dispersed, the Queen's effort to reject the constitution of 1887 had been approved by the one meeting held on the palace grounds and composed almost entirely of native Kanakas; the other meeting had resolved to establish a provisional government, and formed a committee to proceed with its organization. The Queen, though thus strongly endorsed by her native-born subjects, as she calls them, did not venture any arrests of the alleged revolutionists, but evidently conscious that the revolution which she had endeavored to set on foot had failed of sufficient support, she did not use her troops or the police or any other power in the direction of asserting her royal authority. The meeting of the people at the arsenal was followed by organization, the arming of the citizens, the strong array of forces, and a determined spirit of success which has materialized into an established government that has continued to exist for more than a year, practically without any opposition in Hawaii, and with the recognition of many great powers, including the United States. These events show, beyond reasonable dispute, the acceptance by the people of Hawaii of the judgment and determination of the meeting at the arsenal that the Queen had abdicated, that her authority had departed, that she and her ministers had submitted to the inevitable, and that they retained no longer any substantial ground of hope or expectation that the Queen would be restored to her former office.

 

The question whether such a state of affairs as is shown by the undisputed facts in this case constitute an abdication and created an interregnum was passed upon in England with more care, because of the serious results that followed the decision, than seems to have been bestowed upon a like controversy in any other country.

 

The people of Great Britain have many liberties that are firmly established in the traditions of that country, and on many occasions they have asserted their rights, as the basis of governmental power, with great determination and success. In 1688, when James II was on the throne, his severe conduct, exercised through the judiciary of the Kingdom and in other ways, and a strong adhesion to the Catholic religion, caused the people of Great Britain to accuse him of an intention to violate their unwritten constitution. He was a great and powerful king, and had accomplished very much for the glory and honor of England. But the people of England held him to an observance of the spirit of his oath of loyalty to the constitution of that country, and, when they became satisfied that he had made an effort to subvert it, they in their Parliament passed upon the question of his abdication and held that his intention and effort to violate the constitution robbed him of his title to the crown and opened the door to the establishment of a new dynasty. Blackstone, in speaking of these events, says:

"King James II succeeded to the throne of his ancestors, and" might have enjoyed it during the remainder of his life but for his own infatuated conduct which, with other concurring circumstances, brought on the revolution in 1688.

 

"The true ground and principle upon which that memorable event proceeded was an entirely new case in politics, which had never before happened in our history the abdication of the reigning monarch and the vacancy of the throne thereupon.

It was not a defeasance of the right of succession and a new limitation of the crown by the King and both Houses of Parliament; it was the act of the nation alone upon the conviction that there was no king in being. For, in a full assembly of the lords and commons, met in a convention upon the supposition of this vacancy, both houses came to this resolution:

"That King James II, having endeavored to subvert the constitution of the Kingdom by breaking the original contract between King and people; and, by the advice of Jesuits and other wicked persons, having violated the fundamental law and having withdrawn himself out of this Kingdom has abdicated the Government, and that the throne is hereby vacant."

Proceeding further, this eminent jurist says:

"For whenever a question arises between the society at large and any magistrate vested with powers originally delegated by that society it must be decided by the voice of the society itself: there is not upon earth any other tribunal to resort to. And that these consequences were fairly deduced from these facts our ancestors have solemnly determined in a full parliamentary convention representing the whole society."

Further quoting from Blackstone, he says:

''They held that this misconduct of King James amounted to an endeavor to subvert the constitution and not to an actual subversion or total dissolution of the Government, according to the principles of Mr. Locke, which would have reduced the society almost to a state of nature; would have leveled all distinctions of honor, rank, offices, and property; would have annihilated the sovereign power, and in consequence have repealed all positive laws, and would have left the people at liberty to have erected a new system of State upon a new foundation of polity. They therefore very prudently voted it to amount to no more than an abdication of the Government and a consequent vacancy of the throne, whereby the Government was allowed to subsist though the executive magistrate was gone, and the kingly office to remain though King James was no longer King. And thus the constitution was kept entire, which upon every sound principle of government must otherwise have fallen to pieces had so principal and constituent a part as the royal authority been abolished or even suspended.

 

"This single postulatum, the vacancy of the throne, being once established, the rest that was then done followed almost of course. For, if the throne be at any time vacant (which may happen by other means than that of abdication, as if all the blood-royal should fail, without any successor appointed by Parliament) if, I say, a vacancy, by any means whatsoever, should happen, the right of disposing of this vacancy seems naturally to result to the Lords and Commons, the trustees and representatives of the nation. For there are no other hands in which it can so properly be intrusted; and there is a necessity of it being intrusted somewhere, else the whole frame of government must dissolve and perish."

The principle on which this decision in regard to King James II rests is still stronger when it is applied to persons who are citizens of the United States but who reside in Hawaii, and by the constitution and laws of Hawaii are admitted into an active participation in the conduct of government, both as officeholders and as qualified electors. If they, in connection with the native or naturalized subjects of the Kingdom of Hawaii, unite in demanding the preservation of their constitutional rights, there should be no captious. or technical objections taken to the assertion of that right, or to the manner of its exercise.

 

In reference to all citizens of the United States residing in Hawaii and not actual members or officers of that Government, the spirit of our laws, in accordance with the principles of the Constitution and the traditions of the people, should be applied to their protection, when it is the duty of the United States to protect them, and especially are they entitled to the full advantage of the protection that is afforded under that doctrine of personal liberty and security which upholds the authority of governments de facto. When such a government arises out of alleged abuses and grievances and is set up in good faith by the intelligent classes to succeed a monarchy in a state that is the only monarchy in a sisterhood of many republics, the rules governing its recognition are not those that seem to control in cases where the state is a sole republic surrounded by an environment

of monarchies.

 

In Europe, where governmental successions have no relation to the will of the people, every presumption that can be made to support the regal system is adopted and enforced with rigid care. The old conditions are presumed to exist in a regal government until the new government has accomplished a complete revolution and until nothing remains to be done to secure an uninterrupted and unembarrassed installation of its authority.

 

Those presumptions are all in favor of the crown and are easily applied in practical use, as the crown is a political unit and acts with certainty in the assertion of its claims. When the rights asserted against the crown are set up by the people, or for the people, the act is necessarily a representative act, and the authority of the alleged representative is severely questioned.

 

Indeed, it is not considered as existing in European countries until, through bloodshed or an overwhelming exhibition of forces, its acknowledgment is literally compelled. The reverse of this rule should obtain in that part of the world where it is held, universally, that the right to govern depends upon the consent of the governed and not upon the divine inheritance of power. In a controversy like that in Hawaii the presumption is in favor of those who unite to assert the constitutional rights of the people, that they are acting in good faith, and that they are not seeking personal aggrandizement, but the good of the people. When such a popular movement engages the evident support of those whom the people have trusted for integrity to an extent that inspires a just confidence of success a sufficient foundation exists, at least, for a government de facto; and it is no more necessary to its validity that every possible obstacle to its final success has been removed than it would be necessary, on the other hand, to the permanency of the crown that every rebellious subject of the Queen had been slain or banished and their estates had been confiscated.

 

The supporters of Liliuokalani seem to be enforced into the attitude of claiming that it is no consequence that she may have forfeited her right to the crown and had placed in the power of the people lawfully to claim that this was an abdication, unless the people had overcome and removed every vestige of her power before they proclaimed the Provisional Government.

 

Her known purpose to press the absolute powers claimed by her in the new constitution to the extent of the banishment or death of the white population seems not to be permitted to excuse the action of the people in displacing her, if they had not captured her small force of policemen and soldiers before the American minister had recognized the Provisional Government.

 

Liliuokalani did not seem to take this narrow view of the revolution which she had inaugurated.

 

The banishment or death of the white people and the confiscation of their estates was the final decree recorded in the Queen's heart and mind, as she freely stated to Minister Willis, and until this cruel work had been accomplished she held that her policy of revolution would be a failure. There is some ground for hope that these were not her sincere purposes or wishes but that in giving expression to them she was ''playing a part." As opposed to such purposes, or to a Queen who could imagine them in the presence of the constitutional protection given to the rights and liberties of the people throughout this hemisphere, Americans should not hesitate in the support of a government de facto, set up to oppose her, because she had not made a formal surrender of a place where a few soldiers and policemen had been stationed, who were powerless to hold it against the people then under arms. It was an act of mercy to her and her retainers that they were not forced into the commission of acts of violence. An interregnum existed in the executive Government of Hawaii, which was caused by the effort of the Queen to destroy the constitution of 1887, and by the act of the people in accepting her will for the completed coup d'état, and, in making that the occasion for supplying the executive department of the Government with a chief.

 

A careful investigation has failed to show that any conspiracy now exists that is directed to the virtual displacement of the Provisional Government. The personal efforts of the Queen seem to have been directed toward a provision for a safe and comfortable life, free from the anxiety of office and "the stress of her native subjects." Her power of attorney to Paul Neumann and his mission to the United States indicate a reliance on the "arts of peace" rather than of war for indemnity for the past and security for the future. The opinions, or sentiments, expressed by her in the three interviews she had with Mr. Willis, in which she uttered the severest denunciations against the white race in Hawaii, and declared her willingness, if not her purpose, to confiscate their estates and to banish or to destroy them, while they are a seeming expression of the lofty indignation of an offended ruler, are so unsuited to the character of a queen crowned by a Christian and civilized people, and so out of keeping with her character as a woman who had received kindly recognition and personal regard from other good and refined ladies, that they shock all right-minded people in Christendom. The Government of the United States should willingly forbear to regard these utterances as her official expression of such designs upon the lives and liberties of those whom she would find in her power, upon her restoration to the throne, and accept them as a means adopted by her to convince Mr. Willis that her restoration to the throne was impossible, and was not in accordance with her wishes.

 

The President, on the first intimation of these harsh declarations of the Queen, at once laid them before Congress, and abandoned the further exercise of his good offices to bring about a reconciliation between her and those who were conducting and supporting the Provisional Government.

 

Mr. Willis, however, regarding his instructions as continuing to require his intercession beyond the point where the President considered that it should cease, held a second and third interview with Liliuokalani. After these interviews had closed, the Queen being still firm in her course, Mr. Carter, a trusted friend, obtained her signature to a pledge of amnesty, and made that the basis of his proposition to Mr. Dole for the abandonment of the Provisional Government, which was summarily refused.

 

This closed that incident. Mr. Willis, in what he did, obeyed what he conceived to be his instructions, and being so distant from Washington, it is a matter of regret, but not of surprise, that there was an apparent want of harmony between his action in continuing his interviews with Liliuokalani after the President had determined that the full duty of the Government had been performed.

 

The attitude of Liliuokalani at the conclusion of this proceeding is that of waiting for a pleasant retirement from the cares of public life, rather than of waiting for an opportunity to bring about a hostile collision with the people who support the new order of government in Hawaii.

 

In dealing with a grave subject, now for the first time presented in America, we must consider the conditions of public sentiment as to monarchic government, and we shall derive also material help from the light of English history. In the Western Hemisphere, except as to the colonial relation, which has become one of mere political alliance chiefly for commercial reasons and does not imply in any notable case absolute subjection to imperial or royal authority, royalty no longer exists.

 

When a crown falls, in any kingdom of the Western Hemisphere, it is pulverized, and when a scepter departs, it departs forever; and American opinion can not sustain any American ruler in the attempt to restore them, no matter how virtuous and sincere the reasons may be that seem to justify him. There have been heathen temples in the older States in this hemisphere where the bloody orgies of pagan worship and sacrifice have crimsoned history with shame; and very recently such temples have been erected in the United States to abuse Christianity by the use of its sacred name and ritual. When the arms of invaders, or mobs of the people, have destroyed these temples, no just indignation at the cruelties that may have been perpetrated in their destruction could possibly justify their restoration.

 

It is a great blessing to this Western World that the nations are to be spared the calamities which Blackstone describes as "imbruing the kingdom of England in blood and confusion," growing out of claims of succession to the crown. In almost every reign prior to that of the present house of Hanover the lives and property of the people of England, amid the greatest cruelties, have been sacrificed in settling pretensions to the crown.

 

It was these conflicts and this distress of innocent sufferers that caused the people to claim through the judges the protection of the doctrine that service rendered to the king, who held the scepter was lawful, although he was not rightfully in possession of the crown. No greater liberty of the people was ever devised or granted than the right of protection under a king de facto against a king de jure.

 

De facto governments, when they seek to supply the gap created by an interregnum, are favored in the international law, and when they are also based on the right of popular government in conflict with regal government, or to prevent its re-establishment, once it has disappeared in a State of the Western Hemisphere, it is so rooted and established in the foundations of the rightful authority to rule that it is justly to be ranked among the cardinal liberties of the people.

 

This doctrine is not new, and yet it is modern in England, where the right to the crown and its prerogatives have bled the people for fifteen centuries. The stringent doctrine that a de facto government must be established firmly in all respects before it is entitled to recognition by another sovereign and power had no application to the facts and circumstances that attended the recent revolution in Hawaii; moreover if the revolution there had been directed against the entire government and for the overthrow of the constitution of 1887, and all monarchic rule, if it was a sincere, strong, earnest and successful movement of the people for the recovery of their natural right to rule themselves, they should not be narrowly questioned and held to rigid account for a proper and discreet performance of every act necessary to their resumption' of their natural rights, but all America must unite in the declaration that, under such circumstances, the presumption of law should be favorable to such movements, rather than unfriendly to the establishment by the people of the foundations of their liberties, based upon their right to govern themselves.

 

The parliament of Hawaii had been prorogued by the Queen on the 14th day of January, and could not be again assembled under the constitution, except by the chief executive authority.

 

Until that authority was supplied in some way therefore, the Legislature could not be reconvened. It was the establishment of that authority, the chief executive head of the nation, which was the question at issue, and when that was decided, an appeal to the Legislature of Hawaii for its confirmation or ratification was not only unnecessary, but might have resulted in a counterrevolution.

 

It was, therefore, in the interest of peace, good order, and right government, that the people of Hawaii, who  

were unopposed in their process of organizing an executive head for the Government, should proceed to do so as they did, regularly and in an orderly, firm and successful manner. Thus the abdication of Liliuokalani was confirmed and has so continued from that day to this. The Government of the United States has on various occasions recognized the succession to the executive authority as residing in the Provisional Government initiated at that public meeting at the arsenal and consummated on the 17th day of January by public proclamation.

 

Then, on the 19th day of January according to the recognition of the United States from which there has been no dissent or departure, the interregnum ceased, and the executive head of the Government of Hawaii was established. Until this was completed, on the 17th day of January, by the proclamation of the Provisional Government, the United States was still charged, under every principle of law and justice, and under the highest obligation of duty, to keep her forces in Honolulu, and to enforce, in virtue of her sovereign authority, the rights of her citizens under the treaty obligations and also under the laws of Hawaii, relating to the safety of person and property and the rights of industry, commerce and hospitality in their free pursuit and enjoyment. And when the Provisional Government was thus established, it rested with the United States to determine whether the Government of Hawaii was so far rehabilitated and so safely established that these rights of her citizens could be intrusted to its keeping. The recognition of such a state of affairs, within a country whose executive department has been made vacant in consequence of domestic strife, is quite a separate and different proceeding, both in form and effect, from the recognition of the political independence of a government that is complete in its organization. In the latter case the recognition excludes all rights of interference in its domestic affairs, while in the former it is the right and duty of supplying the protection of law to the citizen that makes interference necessary as well as lawful.

 

The independence of Hawaii as a sovereign State had been long recognized by the United States, and this unhappy occasion did not suggest the need of renewing that declaration. The question presented in Honolulu on and after the 12th of January, 1893, was whether the Queen continued to be the executive head of the Government of Hawaii. That was a question of fact which her conduct and that of her people placed in perilous doubt until it was decided by the proclamation of a new executive. Pending that question, there was no responsible executive government in Hawaii. On the 17th of January that doubt was resolved to the satisfaction of the American Minister, and of all other representatives of foreign governments in Hawaii, in favor of the Provisional Government. This recognition did not give to the Government of Hawaii the legal or moral right to expel the troops of any government, stationed in Honolulu in the period of interregnum, until it had so firmly established its authority as to give to foreigners the security to provide for which these troops had been landed. Good faith and honest respect for the right of friendly nations would certainly require the withdrawal of all duty or abridge his right to call for the troops on the Boston to further interference with the domestic affairs of Hawaii as soon as that Government had provided security that was reasonably sufficient for the protection of the citizens of the United States.

 

But the Government of the United States had the right to keep its troops in Honolulu until these conditions were performed, and the Government of Hawaii could certainly acquiesce in such a policy without endangering its independence or detracting from its dignity. This was done, and the troops from the Boston camped on shore for several months. The precise hour when or the precise conditions under which the American Minister recognized the Provisional Government is not a matter of material importance. It was his duty, at the earliest safe period, to assist by his recognition in the termination of the interregnum, so that citizens of the United States might be safely remitted to the care of that Government for the security of their rights. As soon as he was convinced that the Provisional Government was secure against overthrow, it was his duty to recognize the rehabilitated State. Whether this was done an hour or two sooner or later could make no substantial difference as to his rights or duties, if he was satisfied that the movement was safe against reversal. If no question of the annexation of Hawaii to the United States had existed, the conduct of the American minister in giving official recognition to the Provisional Government would not have been the subject of adverse criticism. But the presence of that question and his anxious advocacy of annexation did not relieve him from the protect the citizens of the United States, during an interregnum in the office of chief executive of Hawaii. They were not to be put into a state of outlawry and peril if the minister had been opposed to annexation, nor could his desire on that subject in any way affect their rights or his duty. He gave to them the protection they had the right to demand, and, in respect of his action up to this point, so far as it related to Hawaii, his opinions as to annexation have not affected the attitude of the United States Government, and the committee find, no cause of censure either against Minister Stevens or Captain Wiltse, of the Boston.

 

Afterward, on the 1st day of February, 1893, the American minister caused the flag of the United States to be raised on the Government building in Honolulu, and assumed and declared a protectorate over that nation in the name of the United States. This act on the part of our minister was without authority, and was void for want of power. It was disavowed by Secretary Foster and rebuked by Secretary Gresham, and the order to abandon the protectorate and haul down the flag was in accordance with the duty and honor of the United States. To haul down the flag of the United States was only an order to preserve its honor.

 

The diplomatic officers of the United States in Hawaii have the right to much larger liberty of action in respect to the internal affairs of that country than would be the case with any other country with which we have no peculiar or special relations. In our diplomatic correspondence with Hawaii and in the various treaties, some of them treaties of annexation, which have been signed and discussed, though not ratified, from time to time, 'there has been manifested a very near relationship between the two governments. The history of Hawaii in its progress, education, development, and government, and in Christianity, has been closely identified with that of the United States - so closely, indeed, that the United States has not at any time hesitated to declare that it would permit no intervention in the affairs of Hawaii by any foreign government which might tend to disturb the relations with the United States, or to gain any advantage there over the Americans who may have settled in that country. The United States has assumed and deliberately maintained toward Hawaii a relation which is entirely exceptional, and has no parallel in our dealings with any other people.

 

The justification for this attitude is not a matter with which this inquiry is necessarily connected, but its existence furnishes a good excuse, if excuse is needed, for a very lively concern on the part of our diplomatic representatives in everything that relates to the progress of that people.

 

The causes that have led to this peculiar situation are altogether apparent. They are in every sense honorable, just, and benevolent. One nation can not assume such an attitude toward another, especially if the latter is, by contrast, small weak and dependent upon the good will or forbearance of the world to its existence, without giving to it a guaranty of external and internal security.

 

The attitude of the United States toward Hawaii, thus voluntarily assumed, gives to Hawaii the right to regard it as such a guaranty.

 

In the absence of a police to establish a colonial system and of any disposition for territorial aggrandizement, the Government of the United States looked with approbation and gave encouragement to the labors and influence of its citizens in Hawaii, in laying the groundwork of a free and independent government there, which, in its principles and in the distribution of powers, should be like our own and ultimately become republican in form. This has been the unconcealed wish of the people of the United states, in which many of the native Hawaiians have participated.

 

Observing the spirit of the Monroe doctrine, the United States, in the beginning of our relations with Hawaii, made a firm and distinct declaration of the purpose to prevent the absorption of Hawaii or the political control of that country by any foreign power. Without stating the reasons for this policy, which included very important commercial and military considerations, the attitude of the United States toward Hawaii was in moral effect that of a friendly protectorate. It has been a settled policy of the United States that if it should turn out that Hawaii, for any cause, should not be able to maintain an independent government, that country would be encouraged in its tendency to gravitate toward political union with this country.

 

The treaty relations between Hawaii and the United States, as fixed by several conventions that have been ratified, and by other negotiations have been characterized by a sentiment of given to our diplomatic and consular officers and to the naval close reciprocity. In additions to trade relations of the highest advantage to Hawaii, the United States has so far interfered with the internal policy of Hawaii as to secure an agreement from that Government restricting the disposal of bays and harbors and to the crown lands to other countries, and has secured exclusive privileges in Pearl Harbor of great importance to this Government.

 

This attitude of the two governments and the peculiar friendship of the two peoples, together with the advantages given to Hawaii in commerce, induced a large and very enterprising class of people from the United States to migrate to these islands and to invest large sums of money in the cultivation of sugar and rice, and in other trade and industry. The introduction of laborers from Japan and China in great numbers gave to the governing power in Hawaii a new and very significant importance, and made it necessary, for the protection of the interest of the white or European peoples and the natives, that the safeguards of the organic law of the Kingdom should be carefully preserved. In the efforts to secure these guarantees of safe government, no distinction of race was made as to the native or Kanaka population, but the Chinese and Japanese were excluded from participation in the government as voters, or as officeholders.

 

Apprehensions of civil disturbance in Hawaii caused the United States to keep ships of war at Honolulu for many years past, almost without intermission, and the instructions that were commanders on that station went beyond the customary instructions applicable to other countries. In most instances, the instructions so given included the preservation of order and of the peace of the country, as well as the protection and preservation of the property and of the lives and treaty rights of American citizens.

 

The circumstances above mentioned, which the evidence shows to have existed, created a new light under which we must examine into the conduct of our diplomatic and naval officers in respect of the revolution that occurred in Hawaii in January, 1898. In no sense, and at no time, has the Government of the United States observed toward the domestic affairs of Hawaii the strict impartiality and the indifference enjoined by the general law of non-interference, in the absence of exceptional conditions. We have always exerted the privilege of interference in the domestic policy of Hawaii to a degree that would not be justified under our view of the international law, in reference to the affairs of Canada, Cuba or Mexico.

 

The cause of this departure from our general course of diplomatic conduct is the recognized fact that Hawaii has been all the time under a virtual suzerainty of the United States, which is, by an apt and familiar definition, a paramount authority, not in any actual sense and actual sovereignty, but a de facto supremacy over the country. This sense of paramount authority, of supremacy, with the right to intervene in the affairs of Hawaii, has never been lost sight of by the United States to this day, and it is conspicuously manifest in the correspondence of Mr. Willis with Mr. Dole, which is set forth in the evidence which accompanies this report.

 

Another fact of importance in considering the conduct of our diplomatic and naval officers during the revolution of January, 1893, is that the annexation of Hawaii to the United States has been the subject of careful study and almost constant contemplation among Hawaiians and their kings since the beginning of the reign of Kamehameha I. This has always been regarded by the ruling power in Hawaii as a coveted and secure retreat a sort of house of refuge whenever the exigencies of fate might compel Hawaii to make her choice between home rule and foreign domination, either in the form of a protectorate, or of submission to some foreign sovereign.

 

Hawaii has always desired an escape to a freer government, when she has to be forced to the point where the surrender of racial pride and her standing as a nation would be the severe penalty of her weakness. Hawaiian prefer citizenship in a great republic to the slavery of subjection to any foreign monarchy. Annexation to the United States has never been regarded with aversion, or with a sense of national degradation, by the Hawaiian people. On the contrary, it has been adopted as a feature of political action by those who have attempted to recommend themselves to the support of the people in times of danger.

 

In the revolution of January, 1893, those who assumed the sovereign power, declaring that there was an interregnum, made it a conspicuous part of their avowed purpose to remain in authority until Hawaii should be annexed to the United States.

 

This was stated as an argument for the creation of a Provisional Government, without which there would be less advantage in the change of the situation. Annexation was an avowed purpose of the Provisional Government, because it would popularize the movement. No one could project a revolution in Hawaii for the overthrow of the monarchy, that would not raise the question among the people of annexation to the United States.

 

In the diplomatic correspondence of the United States with our ministers to Hawaii, frequent and favorable allusion is made to this subject as a matter of friendly consideration for the advantage of that country and people, and not as a result that would enhance the wealth or power of the United States. This treatment of the subject began very early in the history of Hawaiian civilization, and it was taken up and discussed by the people of the islands as a topic of patriotic inspiration. It was their habit to celebrate the anniversary of the independence of the United States as a national fete day. So that, there was no thought of conspiracy against the monarchy in openly favoring the project of annexation. Whether annexation is wise and beneficial to both countries is a question that must receive the consideration of both governments before it can be safely settled.

 

The testimony taken by the committee discloses the well considered opinion of several of our most eminent naval and military officers, that the annexation of Hawaii is a fact indispensable to the proper defense and protection of our western coast and cities But this is a matter with which the committee is not especially charged, and reference is made to these opinions as supporting the statement that all intelligent men in Hawaii and in the United States who have taken pains to consider the subject, are convinced that the question is one deserving of thorough investigation and a correct and friendly decision. The question of annexation, however, is distinctly presented in the proclamation of the Provisional Government as one to be settled by the action of the Government of the United States.

 

Commissioners to treat with the United Sates for the annexation of Hawaii were sent- to Washington immediately upon the adoption and promulgation of the Provisional Government, and they negotiated and signed a treaty in conjunction with Mr. Secretary Foster, which was submitted to the Senate of the United States and was subsequently withdrawn by the present administration. Accompanying that treaty was a paper signed by Liliuokalani, in which she stated no objection to the project of annexation to the United States, but in which she protested earnestly against her dethronement, and alleged that the United States, through the abuse by its diplomatic and naval officers of the powers entrusted to them, had virtually compelled her abdication. The President of the United States, after a further examination of the subject, concluded that it was his duty to withdraw this annexation treaty from the Senate for further consideration, and so notified the Provisional Government through Mr. Willis, our present minister.

 

The recognition of the Provisional Government was lawful and authoritative, and has continued without interruption or modification up to the present time. It may be justly claimed for this act of recognition that it has contributed greatly to the maintenance of peace and order in Hawaii, and to the promotion of the establishment of free, permanent, constitutional government in Hawaii, based upon the consent of the people.

 

The complaint by Liliuokalani in the protest that she sent to the President of the United States and dated the 18th day of January, is not in the opinion of the committee, well founded in fact or in justice. It appears from the evidence submitted with this report that she was in fact the author and promoter of a revolution in Hawaii which involved the destruction of the entire constitution, and a breach of her solemn oath to observe and support it, and it was only after she had ascertained that she had made a demand upon her native subjects for support in this movement which they would not give to her, that she, for the time, postponed her determination to do so as soon as she could feel that she had the power to sustain the movement.

 

But the President of the United States, giving attention to Liliuokalani's claim that this Government had alarmed her by the presence of its troops into the abdication of her crown, believed that it was proper and necessary in vindication of the honor of the United States to appoint a commissioner to Hawaii who would make a careful investigation into the facts and send the facts and his conclusions to the President, for his information. The commissioner, Mr. Blount, went to Hawaii under circumstances of extreme embarrassment and executed his instructions with impartial care to arrive at the truth, and he presented a sincere and instructive report to the President of the United States, touching the facts, the knowledge of which he thus acquired. In the agitated state of opinion and feeling in Hawaii at that time it was next to impossible to obtain a full, fair, and free declaration in respect of the facts which attended this revolution, and particularly was this difficult to obtain from the persons who actively participated in that movement.

 

The evidence submitted by the committee, in addition to that which was presented by Mr. Blount, having been taken under circumstances more favorable to the development of the whole truth with regard to the situation, has, in the opinion of the committee, established the fact that the revolutionary movement in Hawaii originated with Liliuokalani, and was promoted, provided for, and, as she believed, secured by the passage of the opium bill and the lottery bill through the Legislature, from which she expected to derive a revenue sufficient to secure the ultimate success of her purpose, which was distinctly and maturely devised to abolish the constitution of 1887, and to assume to herself absolute power, free from constitutional restraint of any serious character.

 

The fact cannot be ignored that this revolutionary movement of Liliuokalani, which had its development in the selection of a new cabinet to supplant one which had the support of all the conservative elements in the islands, was set on foot and accomplished during the absence of the American minister on board the ship Boston during the ten days which preceded the prorogation of the Legislature. The astonishment with which this movement was received by the American emigrants and other white people residing in Hawaii, and its inauguration in the absence of the Boston and the American minister, show that those people, with great anxiety, recognized the fact that it was directed against them and their interests and welfare, and that when it was completed they would become its victims. These convictions excited the serious apprehensions of all the white people in those islands that a crisis was brought about in which not only their rights in Hawaii, and under the constitution, were to be injuriously affected, but that the ultimate result would be that they would be driven from the islands or, remaining there, would be put at the mercy of those who chose to prey upon their property. This class of people, who are intended to be ostracized supply nine-tenths of the entire tax receipts of the kingdom; and they were conscious that the purpose was to inflict taxation upon them without representation, or else to confiscate their estates and drive them out of the country. This produced alarm and agitation, which resulted in the counter movement set on foot by the people to meet and overcome the revolution which Liliuokalani had projected and had endeavored to accomplish. Her ministers were conscious of the fact that any serious resistance to her revolutionary movement (of which they had full knowledge before they were inducted into office) would disappoint the expectations of the Queen and would result in the overthrow of the executive government; and. while they had evidently promised the Queen that they would support her in her effort to abolish the constitution of 1887 and substitute one which they had secretly assisted in preparing, when the moment of the trial came they abandoned her they broke faith with her. The Queen's ministers took fright and gave information to the people of the existence of the movements and concealed purposes of the Queen and of her demands upon them to join her in the promulgation of the constitution, and they appealed to the committee of safety for protection, and continued in that attitude until they saw that the kindled wrath of the people would not take the direction of violence and bloodshed without the provocation of a serious necessity. Being satisfied that they could trust to the forbearance of the people, who were looking to the protection of their interests and had no desire for strife and bloodshed they began to finesse in a political way to effect a compromise between the people and the Queen, and they induced her to make the proclamation of her intentions to postpone the completion of her revolutionary purposes, which was circulated in Honolulu on Monday morning. These men, whose conduct cannot be characterized as anything less than perfidious, hastened to give to the President of the United States false and misleading statements of the facts leading up to, attending, and succeeding this revolution. To do this they made deceptive and misleading statements to Mr. Blount. Upon them must rest the odium of having encouraged the Queen in her revolutionary intentions; of having then abandoned her in a moment of apparent danger; of having thrown themselves upon the mercy of the people, and then of making an attempt, through falsehood and misrepresentation, to regain power in the Government of Hawaii, which the people would naturally, forever deny to them.

 

A question has been made as to the right of the President of the United States to despatch Mr. Blount to Hawaii as his personal representative for the purpose of seeking the further information which the President believed was necessary in order to arrive at a just conclusion regarding the state of affairs in Hawaii. Many precedents could be quoted to show that such power has been exercised by the President on various occasions without dissent on the part of Congress or the people of the United States. The employment of such agencies is a necessary part of the, proper exercise of the diplomatic power which is intrusted by the constitution with the President. Without such authority our foreign relations would be so embarrassed with difficulties that it would be impossible to conduct them with safety or success. These precedents also show that the Senate of the United States, though in session, need not be consulted as to the appointment of such agents, or as to the instructions which the President may give them.

 

An authority was instrusted to Mr. Blount to remove the American flag from the Government building in Hawaii, and to disclaim openly and practically the protectorate which had been announced in that country by Minister Stevens, and also to remove the troops from Honolulu to the steamer Boston.

 

This particular delegation of authority to Mr. Blount was paramount over the authority of Mr. Stevens, who was continued as minister resident of the United States at Honolulu, and it raised the question whether the Government of the United States can have at the same foreign capital two ministers, each of whom shall exercise separate and special powers.

 

There seems to be no reason why the Government of the United States cannot, in conducting its diplomatic intercourse with other countries, exercise powers as broad and general, or as limited and peculiar, or special, as any other government.

 

Other governments have been for many years, and even centuries, in the habit of intrusting special and particular missions to one man representing them at a foreign court, and to several men in combination when that was found to be desirable. In fact, there has been no limit placed upon the use of a power of this kind, except the discretion of the sovereign or ruler of the country. The committee fail to see that there is any irregularity in such a course as that, or that the power given to Mr. Blount to withdraw the troops from Honolulu or to lower the flag of the United States was to any extent either dangerous or interrupting to any other lawful authority existing there in any diplomatic or naval officer. There may be a question as to the particular wording of the order which Mr. Blount gave to Admiral Skerrett for the lowering of the flag and the withdrawal of the troops, but that is hypercriticism, because the substantial fact was that Mr. Blount 'executed the command of the President in communicating to Admiral Skerrett such order, as the order of the President of the United States. Mr. Blount's authority had been made known to Admiral Skerrett; his instructions had been exhibited to Admiral Skerrett; and they both understood that what Mr. Blount was then doing had received the sanction of the President of the United States before Mr. Blount had entered upon the discharge of his ministerial functions, and that his act would receive the unqualified approval of the President of the United States. That being so, the mere form in which the order was addressed to Admiral Skerrett seems to be a matter of no serious consequence.

 

The control given to Mr. Trist over the military operations in Mexico, when war was flagrant, was far greater than that which was confided to Mr. Blount. The secret orders given to the commanders of the Army and of the Navy on that occasion are set out in the appendix to this report.

 

When Mr. Willis arrived in Honolulu he was received by the Provisional Government, to which he was accredited, and an interchange of the usual courtesies was had between them. He carried instructions, as Minister of the United States, which did not concern the Government of Hawaii until they had been attended with a certain result which he endeavoured to bring about. That result was that Liliuokalani should agree that, in the event of her restoration to the throne, not by the action of the President of the United States, but in any other event, or by any agreement, she would bind herself to grant full and free amnesty to all persons who had been engaged in opposition to her alleged authority. When that agreement had been obtained, Mr. Willis was instructed to submit it to the Provisional Government and ascertain whether they would agree to restore the Queen to the throne under those circumstances and upon those conditions. If this was intervention, it was in the interest of Americans in Hawaii. It was an exaction upon Liliuokalani which would forbid, under the penalty of war, that should she acquire the throne by whatever means, that she should openly disavow any purpose to inflict any pains and penalties upon those who had supported the Provisional Government.

 

Liliuokalani, after several efforts on the part of Mr. Willis to obtain her consent to this proposition, finally signed it without the assent of her ministers, and it was attested by Mr. Carter, who was a personal and political friend. Her declaration or agreement thus signed and delivered to Mr. Willis was by him presented to the President of the Provisional Government (who was also minister of foreign affairs), and the question whether or not it would be accepted by the Government of Hawaii was submitted to him. Whereupon the President of the Provisional Government declined to accept the proposition; declined to yield the power which had been vested in him as the chief executive of Hawaii; and nothing more was done either to induce him, or to compel him, to consent to, or to assist in, the restoration of Liliuoknlani to the throne or to the restoration of the Monarchy.

 

If, in this course of proceedings, the President of the United States had intended to compel obedience to what is termed his "decision" in the matter by using the force of the United States to assist' the Queen in being enthroned, that would have been an act of war, entirely beyond his power, and would not have received the sanction of any considerable part of the American people, and would have no warrant in international law. But such was not the intention of the President, as is shown by contemporaneous acts, by his declarations, and by his subsequent treatment of the subject. Therefore, the question between the United States and Hawaii touching the propriety of an intervention in the domestic affairs of Hawaii to the extent of gaining the final decision and agreement of both parties upon these propositions is one that is strictly within the accepted right or authority of a sovereign to tender his good offices to reconcile the conflicts of two or more factions, or parties, that may be opposed to each other within any country.

 

The tender of good offices has often been voluntarily made in the interest of humanity, of peace, of law, of order, or at the suggestion of one or two belligerent powers actually engaged in war. Sometimes it has been made at the suggestion of that party in a government, engaged in actual hostilities which had the evident power to crush its opponent by prosecuting the war to extremities. In such cases the intervention has often been accepted as a merciful interposition, and it has been considered an honor by other governments that they should be requested, under such circumstances, to exercise their good offices in favor of procuring peace through a submission to inevitable results. When the tender of good offices is made at the request of both of the contending parties it is difficult to conceive how any sovereign of a foreign country could refuse to act in such matter.

 

In the public act by which the Provisional Government of Hawaii was established there was a distinct declaration that the Government was to continue until Hawaii was annexed to the United States. That declaration, apart from every other consideration, would have justified the United States in an interference for the protection of the Provisional Government which would not have been tolerated under other circumstances.

 

That declaration created an intimacy of relationship between the United States and the recognized Government of Hawaii which is entirely exceptional, and which placed within the reach and control of the United States very largely, if not entirely, the disposal of those questions collateral to that of annexation which might have interfered with the peaceful and appropriate solution of any difficulty which might arise in its execution. So that the Provisional Government of Hawaii, having thus thrown itself into the arms of the United States in the first declaration of its existence, can not justly complain that the United States should scrutinize, under the authority thus given, all its pretensions of right thus to dispose of an entire country and people. And Liliuokalani, having reference to the same project of annexation, of which she was fully cognizant, made complaint that the United States had assisted in driving her from her throne by bringing its troops on shore in military array at a time when there was no necessity for it, distinctly announced at the moment of her final and avowed abdication that she would abdicate provisionally and would await the decision of the United States as to whether that abdication and the destruction of the kingdom and the annexation of Hawaii to the United States should become completed facts. Under such circumstances the President of the United States, believing that the information then in possession of the Government was not sufficient to justify summary annexation, could not have done justice to himself, to his country, to the people of Hawaii, to the Provisional Government, or to Liliuokalani, without having made an effort to use his good offices for the purpose of ascertaining whether it was practicable that the Queen should be restored to her authority, leaving the question to be determined by the people interested in Hawaii whether such restoration would be acceptable to them or not.

 

If Liliuokalani had been restored to her throne by the consent of the membership of the Provisional Government, upon the terms and conditions of the proposition which she signed and delivered to Mr. Willis, the President of the United States would not have been in any sense responsible for her restoration, would not have espoused the monarchy, nor would he have done anything that was contradictory of American sentiment, opinion, or policy. He would only have been the mutual friend, accepted, really, by both parties, whose intervention would have secured, with their consent, the final solution of that question. In the absence of such committal on his part to the claims of Liliuokalani or resistance on his part to the recognized rights of the Provisional Government, there is no reason for withholding approval of the conduct of the President of the United States in thus accepting and executing a function which he was entitled to perform, in submitting the question, in due and final form, to the contending parties or factions in Hawaii, whether they preferred to maintain the authority of the Provisional Government, with whatever results may follow from that, or a return to the monarchy under Liliuokalani.

 

Therefore your committee conclude to report that the President of the United States has not, in this particular, in any wise been a party to any irregularity or any impropriety of conduct in his high office.

 

The committee find nothing worthy of criticism in the negotiation of the treaty of annexation with the Provisional Government of Hawaii.

 

The revolution in Hawaii had the effect of displacing one chief of the executive department and substituting another. Except the Queen and her cabinet, no officer of the Government was removed. The legislative body, including the house of nobles and house of representatives and their presiding officers, remained in commission. The supreme court and all other judicial magistracies and the officers of the courts were left undisturbed, and, when the interregnum ended, they pursued their duties without change of interruption; commerce with foreign countries and between the islands was not in any way prevented, and the commercial and banking houses were open for business, which resumed activity when the executive head of the Government was again in the exercise of lawful authority.

 

The Government had not been displaced and another substituted, but only a department which was left vacant had been rehabilitated.

 

When this was done and the fact was recognized, the Government of Hawaii was as competent to treat of annexation to the United States as it had ever been, or as it will ever be, until the United States shall decide that it will annex no more territory unless with the consent of the people to be annexed, to be ascertained by a plebiscite.

 

Complaint is made also that this project of annexation was attempted to be consumated in too great haste.

 

That raises a question of due consideration; for, if the people of both countries desired it, or if, according to every precedent to be found in the various annexations of countries and States to the United States, the respective governments desired it, speedy action in completing the cession was desirable for many obvious reasons, among which the injurious disturbance of commerce and danger to the public peace growing out of a protracted agitation of so grave a matter, are conspicuous.

 

But this is a question of long standing, which has been under favorable consideration by the kings and people of Hawaii and the Government and people of the United States for more than fifty years.

 

It is well understood, and its importance increases with every new event of any consequence in Hawaii, and with the falling-in of every island in the Pacific Ocean that is captured by the great maritime powers of Europe. The committee have copied, in the Appendix to this report, portions of the remarks of Hon. William F. Draper in the House of Representatives on the 4th of February, 1894, which refer in a very clear and concise way to the progress of foreign intervention in the Pacific Ocean by European powers.

 

A President informed as to the history of his country could find no difficulty in dealing with the question of the annexation of Hawaii to the United States on the ground that it is new; and a minister to Hawaii who should fail to inform his Government of the political changes in Hawaii that would affect that question would neglect his duty.

 

It is not a just criticism upon the correspondence of Minister Stevens with his Government that he earnestly advocated annexation. In this he was in line with Mr. Marcy and nearly every one of his successors as Secretary of State, and with many of Mr. Stevens' predecessors as minister to Hawaii. His letters to his Government were written under the diplomatic confidence that is requisite to secure freedom in such communications, and were not expected to come under the scrutiny of all mankind. They show no improper spirit and are not impeachable as coloring or perverting the truth, although some matters stated by him may be classed as severe reflections.  

Whatever motives may have actuated or controlled any representative of the Government of the United States in his conduct of our affairs in Hawaii, if he acted within the limits of his powers, with honest intentions, and has not placed the Government of the United States upon false and untenable grounds, his conduct is not irregular.

 

But, in his dealings with the Hawaiian Government, his conduct was characterised by becoming dignity and reserve, and was not in any way harsh or offensive. In the opinion of the committee, based upon the evidence which accompanies this report the only substantial irregularity that existed in the conduct of any officer of the United States, or agent of the President, during or since the time of the revolution of 1893, was that of Minister Stevens in declaring a protectorate of the United States over Hawaii, and in placing the flag of our country upon the Government building in Honolulu. No actual harm resulted from this unauthorized act, but as a precedent it is not to be considered as being justified. The committee have not considered it necessary to present any resolutions stating the conclusions that are indicated in this report, and ask that they be discharged from the further consideration of the resolutions under which this report is made.

 

We are in entire accord with the essential findings in the exceedingly able report submitted by the chairman of the Committee on Foreign Relations. But it is our opinion

 

First. That the appointment on the 11th day of March, 1893, without the advice and consent of the Senate, of Hon. James H. Blount as "special commissioner" to the Hawaiian Government under letters of credence and those of instruction, which declared that "in all matters affecting relations with the Government of the Hawaiian Islands his authority is paramount" was an unconstitutional act, in that such appointee, Mr. Blount, was never nominated to the Senate, but was appointed without its advice and consent, although that body was in session when such appointment was made, and continued to be in session for a long time immediately thereafter.

 

Second. The orders of the Executive Department by which the naval force of the United States in the harbor of Honolulu was in effect placed under the command of Mr. Blount or of Mr. Willis were without authority or warrant of law.

 

Third. The order given by Mr. Blount to Admiral Skerrett to lower the United States ensign from the Government building in Honolulu and to embark the troops on the ships to which they belonged, was an order which Mr. Blount had no lawful authority to give. Its object was not to terminate a protectorate. That relation had been disavowed by the administration of President Harrison immediately upon receiving information of its establishment. The flag and troops, when such order was given by Mr. Blount, were in the positions from which he ordered them to be removed for the purpose of maintaining order and protecting American life and property.

 

Their presence had been effectual to those ends, and their removal tended to create, and did create, public excitement and, to a degree, distrust of the power of the Provisional Government to preserve order or to maintain itself. That order of Mr. Blount was susceptible of being construed as indicating an unfriendly disposition on the part of the United States toward the Provisional Government, and it was so construed, particularly by the people of Hawaii.

 

In the light of subsequent relations between Mr. Blount and his successor, Mr. Willis, with the Queen, whose office had become vacant by her deposition and abdication under the attack of a successful revolution, this order and its execution were most unfortunate and untoward in their effect. Such relations and intercourse by Messrs. Blount and Willis with the head and with the executive officers of an overthrown government, conducted for the purpose of restoring that government by displacing its successor, were in violation of the constitution and of the principles of international law and were not warranted by the circumstances of the case.

 

Fourth. The question of the rightfulness of the revolution, of the lawfulness of the means by which the deposition and abdication of the Queen were effected, and the right of the Provisional Government to exist and to continue to exist was conclusively settled, as the report so forcibly states, against the Queen and in favor of the Provisional Government, by the act of the administration of President Harrison recognizing such Provisional Government, by the negotiation by that administration with such Provisional Government of a treaty of annexation to the United States; by accrediting diplomatic representation by such administration, and by the present administration to such Provisional Government; therefore, it incontrovertibly follows that the President of the United States had no authority to attempt to reopen such determined questions, and to endeavor by any means whatever to overthrow the Provisional Government or to restore the monarchy which it had displaced.

 

While it is true that a friendly power may rightfully tender its good offices of mediation or advice in cases such as that under present consideration, it is also true that the performance of such offices of mediation or advice ought not to be entered upon without the consent previously given by both the parties whom the action or decision of the friendly power may affect.

 

Such consent was not given in the present instance. The Provisional Government never so consented; it was never requested to consent. It denied the jurisdiction of the present administration on every proper occasion. Therefore the proceedings by the President, which had for their result his request and monition to the Provisional Government to surrender its powers, to give up its existence and to submit to be displaced by the monarchy which it had overthrown, had no warrant in law, nor in any consent of one of the parties to be affected by such proceedings.

 

Fifth. The avowed opinion of the President of the United States, in substance, that it is the duty of this Government to make reparation to the Queen by endeavoring to reinstate her upon her throne by all constitutional methods, is a clear definition of the policy of the present administration to that end.

 

The instructions to Messrs. Blount and Willis must be construed to be other and more ample forms of expression of that policy. No other presumption is permissible than that their actions at Honolulu were with intent to carry out that avowed policy. These considerations make immaterial any discussion, in this connection, of the personal intentions, circumspection or good faith of these gentlemen in the performance of the task to which they had been plainly commanded by the present administration.

JOHN SHERMAN

WM. P. FRYE

J. N. DOLPH

CUSHMAN K. DAVIS


 
     
     
 

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