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Camp Tarawa Then and Now

Camp Tarawa Today by Fred Greguras Kamuela (Waimea) is located at the intersection of the Mamalahoa Highway (Highway 190) and Kawaihae Road (Highway 19) in the northwest part of the island of Hawai’i.  In 1943, it was a small town of about 400 called Kamuela and its residents were almost totally dependent on the Parker Ranch for their livelihood. Camp Tarawa was located on Parker Ranch property in and around Kamuela from 1943-1945.  The camp was between the volcanic peaks of Mauna Kea and Mauna Loa. The Marines and Seabees were at four locations: the camp main side at Kamuela; the artillery camp at Pohakuloa; the amtrac camp at Hapuna Beach and the division rear at the port facilities in Hilo. Most unit headquarters, tent camps, mess halls, clubs, recreation facilities, warehouses, etc. were located at main side.  There were large outlying training areas surrounding the camps for small arms practice, an artillery range, amphibious training and other purposes.   Main Side, Camp Tarawa, 1944-45 The 2nd Marine Division was sent to Camp Tarawa in December, 1943 after the World War II battle of Tarawa to recuperate, get replacements and train for the Saipan and Tinian campaigns in the Pacific. The 2nd Marine Division named their camp after the brutal battle they had just fought to honor the Marines who died there. The division departed from Camp Tarawa in the spring, 1944. The 5th Marine Division used Camp Tarawa beginning in the fall, 1944 to train for the assault on Iwo Jima. The 5th Marine Division left the camp in late December, 1944 and returned to the camp in March 1945 after the battle of Iwo Jima to recover, get replacements and prepare [...]

2017-04-21T01:00:52+00:00 March 30th, 2017|Categories: Blog|

The Mana of Place, A Poem

The Mana of Place There’s a mana in the air of historic places Intangible yet present. Distinct. Sometimes abrupt. A secret storyteller. Resolute. Forceful. Needy in its urge to share Happenings, unfoldings, chains of events that led there, To its vibratory memory marking what occurred. #PlacesTellStories  #ThisPlaceMatters  #HawaiiNei

2017-03-22T15:35:38+00:00 March 22nd, 2017|Categories: Blog|

Public Advocacy Efforts Help Pass County Resolution for Kapaia Swinging Bridge

UPDATE ON KAPAIA SWINGING BRIDGE We're happy to report that rapid response from the public showing support for the Kauai County Council resolution to transfer ownership of the bridge to the Kapaia Foundation was successful!  On March 22, 2017, the Council unanimously passed Resolution 2017-23. Next steps? Kapaia Foundation will submit the grant application for the $231,000 the Council appropriated for the bridge in 2006, and hope to start rebuilding within the next couple of months.  We'll keep you posted. ADVOCACY ALERT - March, 20, 2017 Kapaia Swinging Bridge was added to the list of Hawaii’s Most Endangered Historic Site in 2011 and remains vulnerable.  Please lend your support by submitting testimony in favor of a resolution which will be voted on at the Kauai County Council on March 22. The resolution will transfer ownership, responsibility and funding for the bridge to the Kapaia Foundation who seek to preserve and restore it. HISTORY OF THE BRIDGE Imagine daily life in the 1920s in Kapaia Valley in the Territory of Kauai, where most of the plantation villagers traveled by foot because they could not afford to own an automobile.  Back then the foot bridge across Kapaia Stream was heavily trafficked by Kapaia residents who used it to go to and from work, school, shopping and social time with relatives and neighbors.   Completed in 1948, it connected two communities in Kapaia Valley: the east side was home to the Immaculate Conception Catholic Church, a Filipino “camp”, Hawaiian and Japanese families, taro and rice fields; the west side was home to the Līhu‘e Hongwanji Buddhist Temple, Korean Methodist Church, Chinese Church, Naganuma Store, Ogata Store, Moriwake and Ah Chock’s Store.  The Kapaia Swinging Bridge is listed on the [...]

2017-03-30T17:47:13+00:00 March 21st, 2017|Categories: Blog|

Spotlight on a Grantee: YMCA Waipahu Sugar Mill Smokestack

A Symbol of the Sugar Mill's Role as a Community Gathering Place Lives On The Sam and Mary Cooke Preservation Fund for Hawai‘i supports diverse preservation projects with grants ranging from $2,500 to $10,000. Grants are awarded three times a year and the next application deadline is June 1, 2017.   Click here for more information. Below is the story of how one grant recipient is benefiting from the Fund. The YMCA of Honolulu, founded in 1869, is the latest recipient of a Cooke Preservation Fund grant. The YMCA has been located on the site of the former O‘ahu Sugar Company in Waipahu since 1989 with the YMCA purchasing two acres in 1997 and Oahu Sugar Company donating an additional two acres (including the smokestack) under the condition that the original smokestack be preserved. In 2007, after the successful completion of a large capital campaign, a new family focused Leeward YMCA opened on the site of the Sugar Mill.  Built in 1898, the 170-foot-tall landmark known then as the Oahu Sugar Company mill was an integral part of Waipahu until 1995. The historic building connects children and adults to an important part of their community history, educating and inducing community pride in its heritage. Today the iconic smokestack has deteriorated and stands in disrepair creating a potential safety hazard for surrounding areas. The Cooke Preservation Fund grant is funding part of a concerted effort that will assist with clean up and demobilization of the smokestack with additional phases of the project including testing and permitting, scaffolding that will encircle the smokestack (26 feet high!), cleaning and preparation of the smokestack’s exterior surface and painting of the exterior surface. Waipahu Sugar Mill Campus The smokestack [...]

2017-04-21T01:00:53+00:00 March 7th, 2017|Categories: Blog|

Hanapepe’s Entrepreneurial Past

This small town's history is present and relevant today By Kristen Pedersen We know Kauai for its incredible natural scenery, dense rainforests, and dramatic ocean cliffs. It has been the location for several Hollywood movies and television series, and is a popular destination for hiking and exploring. But, there is also a slice of history, alive and well,  in the small town of Hanapepe, that warrants attention. Hanapepe, a quiet town on Kauai's south shore, is off the Kaumualii Highway, about 16 miles southwest of Lihue. With a population of just 2700, there may be as many free-range chickens on the streets as there are human residents. The lush Hanapepe Valley was home to native Hawaiians for centuries before Captain Cook arrived in 1778. Many crops were grown in the area, including banana, sugar cane, taro, and sweet potatoes. By the 1880’s, the sugar industry was flourishing in Hawaii, bringing Chinese, Japanese and Filipino immigrants to the islands. While most stores and towns on Kauai were built by the sugar plantation owners, Hanapepe was largely built by entrepreneurial immigrants. Many workers who retired from the sugar plantations came to Hanapepe to grow taro, rice, or begin small farms or businesses to serve the local community. Historical Hanapepe. Photo courtesy of Hanapepe.org In addition to agricultural businesses, the military also played a large role in the history and development of Hanapepe. From World War I to the 1950’s, Hanapepe’s Port Allen was a port of call for the US Navy and, subsequently, became one of the biggest towns on Kauai. The Navy no longer docks at Port Allen, but tour boats come and go on their routes up and down the Na Pali coast. There [...]

2017-04-21T01:00:55+00:00 March 1st, 2017|Categories: Blog|

Historic Kaupō School – Rugged Beauty and Solid Community

Site Visit Reveals a Community Steeped in History and Pride of Place February 19, 2017 Kaupō, located on the remote southeastern end of Maui, has a population of about 100 full-time residents but is embraced by thousands of visitors who pass by on the route between Hāna and Haleakalā National Park in Kīpahulu.  The residents are mostly descendants of Kanaka Maoli (Native Hawaiians) whose families have lived in this area for countless generations.  This is off-the-grid territory.  The stars are brilliant on clear nights as power lines do not exist out here. As one can imagine in such an exquisitely beautiful and remote place, community is small and tight. One could almost imagine the phrase “it takes a village” written for this special place.  The Kaupō Community Association’s (KCA) mission—to preserve the natural beauty, environmental resources and rural lifestyle of the Kaupō community—fits well into this terrain. Central to this place is Kaupō School, which is steeped in history.  Since its establishment in 1887, the school has served as the only government institution in a remote, isolated landscape. The two-room classroom building and associated Teacher’s Cottage were built in 1922-23. Keiki learned Hawaiian first here, along with other skills such as fishing, hunting and horseback riding. The school is significant to this remote community as both a gathering place and a link to the ranching and agricultural culture of Kaupō. Kaupō School is listed on the National Register of Historic Places (https://historichawaii.org/2014/03/03/kaupo-school/). The community’s wish is to rehabilitate both the classroom building and the teacher’s cottage into a community center and a shelter to provide safety during storms, floods, earthquakes and other emergencies.  With this in mind, the Kaupō Community Association has taken steps forward [...]

2017-05-11T09:49:25+00:00 February 24th, 2017|Categories: Blog|

The Līhu‘e Community Steps Up to Save Their Historic Post Office!

Public Meeting Draws Crowds, Campaign Provides Guidance on Direct Action About 150 Līhu‘e residents attended the United States Postal Service public meeting at Kaua‘i War Memorial Convention Hall on February 23 to learn more about the USPS desire to relocate daily operations at Līhu‘e Post Office. (Click here to read more about why the post office is being slated for possible closure.) In the weeks prior to the meeting, a public awareness and action campaign, “Save Our Post Office”, was launched by Pat Griffin of the Līhu‘e Business Association and other local leaders in collaboration with Historic Hawai‘i Foundation and the National Trust for Historic Preservation. A team on the ground in Līhu‘e, led by Griffin, canvassed door to door rallying support. Members of the community signed coconuts with messages such as “Closing Līhu‘e Post Office is Nuts!” and postcards pre-printed with a plea to the USPS to maintain the post office as it remains a key component of Līhu‘e’s economically vibrant historic core. Lihue resident holding signed post card in support of keeping Lihue Post Office open.   Continued action, most importantly submitting written comments to Dean Cameron, the USPS representative in San Francisco, postmarked prior to March 25, is vital to send a clear, impactful message that a large segment of the public opposes the post office’s closure. Līhu‘e residents, HHF and the National Trust are calling out to the statewide preservation community for support. Click here for 5 quick, simple, direct actions you can take to let the USPS know you want the historic Līhu‘e Post Office to remain open and in service to the downtown community.

2017-04-21T01:00:52+00:00 February 24th, 2017|Categories: Blog|

Update on the Waikiki War Memorial Natatorium

Photo credit: David Croxford UPDATE ON THE HEARING January 19, 2017:  The City Council's Housing and Zoning Committee heard Resolution 16-311 that would urge the City administration to include a historic rehabilitation alternative in the upcoming Environmental Impact Statement.  Twenty-six people submitted written testimonies in support of the resolution, including Historic Hawaii Foundation and the National Trust for Historic Preservation.  Two individuals, one representing a diverse group of historic and veteran-related organizations, submitted oral testimony in support of the resolution at the hearing. The Deputy Director of the Department of Design and Construction, Mark Yonamine, and Clifford Lau, Chief of the Facilities Division, represented the City & County of Honolulu in opposing the resolution.  Deputy Director Yonamine stated that the alternate proposed was too similar to a precious design that had been subject to a lawsuit and the DCC therefore felt it was a waste of time to pursue a new proposal that would lead down the same path. The main issue related to the National Trust for Historic Preservation's alternate proposal is whether it constitutes a “pool,” which would be subject to Department of Health water quality standards and operational procedures, or would be an “open ocean swim basin” that circulates the water using wave action and natural forces, which is regulated the same as the surrounding ocean waters. The Resolution was temporarily deferred by Housing and Zoning Committee Chair, Kymberly Marcos Pine.  Action taken: City Council will write a letter to the Department of Health requesting they make a determination as to whether the alternate proposed plan constitutes a “pool.”  If the DOH determines it to be a pool, Council Member Pine would not consider it appropriate to move forward and [...]

2017-04-21T01:00:52+00:00 January 16th, 2017|Categories: Advocacy, Blog|

Spotlight on Historic Hilo Town

Our Historic Neighborhoods: Hilo's Christine & David Reed Historic Hilo town on Hawai‘i Island is rich in history and home to a vibrant and growing small business community. In the interview below, Christine and David Reed, longtime residents, share some memories and perspective on Hilo’s relevance today. Historic Hawai‘i Foundation: Tell us a little about yourselves, your life as small business owners and any interesting projects you are working on. Christine & David Reed: It seems that, as small business owners, we live and breathe the business 24/7 but as entrepreneurs we have the opportunity to forge our own way. Basically Books, our retail store, is open 7 days a week and keeps us busy planning events and finding unique new products for our customers. The publishing division, Petroglyph Press, gives us a creative outlet by allowing us to pursue projects that we find interesting. Currently we are working on a reprint of W.D. Westervelt’s Legends of Maui that was originally published in 1910. By marrying his lyrical retelling of the legends with the powerful full color and block print artwork of Dietrich Varez we are able to give a historical publication new life and introduce a new generation to these ancient folktales. Six months ago we released Hawaiian Legends of Volcanoes, also by Westervelt with illustrations by Varez, coinciding with the 100th anniversary of the book as well as Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park and the National Park Service. Christine & David Reed standing in front of the current home of the PacificTsunami Museum, formerly First Hawaiian Bank. HHF: How long have you lived in Hilo? The Reeds: David moved to Hilo in 1958 when his father, Stephen Reed, took a position as [...]

2017-04-21T01:00:52+00:00 January 10th, 2017|Categories: Blog|

History of Recreational Boating Topic of 2017 State Historic Preservation Calendar

.A number of boating recreational facilities, still in use today, are featured in the full-color 2017 calendar produced by the Department of Land and Natural Resources divisions of State Historic Preservation and Boating and Ocean Recreation, with the Hawai‘i Heritage Center. The calendar is designed by Viki Nasu Design Group with photography by David Franzen. Copies of the “Recreational Boating 2017 calendar, which also serves as a tide calendar, are available for purchase from the Hawai‘i Heritage Center (1040 Smith St., Honolulu, or by mail at: P.O. Box 37520, Honolulu, HI 96837). They are also available at Book Ends in Kailua and Na Mea Hawai‘i/Native Books at Ward Warehouse in Honolulu. History of recreational boating facilities in Hawai‘i (Content below Courtesy of the Department of Land and Natural Resources) Prior to World War II, the moorings for all recreational sailing vessels were in private ownership, with one exception, the Ala Wai Boat Harbor.  Constructed by the Federal Emergency Relief Administration it consisted of several docks and piers at the mouth of the Ala Wai Canal and upon its completion in 1935 was turned over to the Territorial Board of Harbor Commissioners to administer.  Opening in May 1936, by mid-1938 it had 95 boats docked there. After World War II recreational boating dramatically increased in popularity, as more and more families purchased boats thanks to the phenomenal rise in personal income and increase in leisure time over the course of the 1950s.  With prices ranging from $1,500 to $6,000, there were almost 6,000 small boats statewide by 1961, with approximately 90% of these used for recreation. The number of vessels moored at the Ala Wai Boat Harbor doubled between 1948 and 1950, following the military’s return [...]

2017-04-21T01:00:53+00:00 December 20th, 2016|Categories: Blog|