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Reports of Committee on Foreign Relations 1789-1901 Volume 6 pp660-661 300dpi scan (VERY LARGE!)

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Mr. Alexander. No. I was appointed in the previous reign, Kalakaua's reign. Their principal functions were to act as the board of pardons.

Senator Gray. You were a member of the board of pardons?

Mr. Alexander. Yes; most of the other powers had been taken away from them.

The Chairman. But as a privy councillor you were a member of the Queen's Government?

Mr. Alexander. Yes, and as surveyor-general.

The Chairman. You have had an acquaintance with Hawaiian affairs and with the people. I suppose your acquaintance with Honolulu is very complete; know a great many people?

Mr. Alexander. Yes.

The Chairman. Your membership in the school board would bring you in contact with the people, I suppose?

Mr. Alexander. Yes, and other ways.

The Chairman. Being surveyor-general and also a member of the board of pardons----

Mr. Alexander. I was always out of politics.

The Chairman. You were never a member of the Legislature?

Mr. Alexander. No.

The Chairman. Never held any political office?

Mr. Alexander. I did not; I rather devoted myself to science; I am also some what of an antiquarian.

The Chairman. Did you hear of or are you aware of any combination amongst any of the people of Honolulu or of the Hawaiian country prior to the announcement of this new constitution by the Queen to break down the monarchy, or overthrow the constitution, or revolutionize the Government?

Mr. Alexander. I did not. I do not think there was any existing.

The Chairman. Do you think it is possible that such a movement as that could have occurred amongst what is called the missionary element in Hawaii without your having some knowledge of it?

Mr. Alexander. I should think not. I think their idea was that they had great confidence in the cabinet appointed at the beginning of November, and expected tbe Government to go on very smoothly until 1894.

The Chairman. And if any new movement was to take place in Hawaii at all it would be developed between that period and 1894. I suppose that is your meaning?

Mr. Alexander. Yes; we did not know what kind of Legislature might be elected in 1894.

Senator Gray. Was there any sentiment at all of a demonstrative character in favor of annexation prior to this emeute?

Mr. Alexander. That subject had been discussed for a good many years. It was considered ultimate destiny in the future.

Senator Gray. Was there any demonstrative action?

Mr. Alexander. No, except that conspiracy, that organization of Ashford, Wilcox, Bush, and others. That took place in the spring of 1892. But that was discountenanced by the conservative people; the best people had no confidence in it.

The Chairman. Was that a movement for annexation?

Mr. Alexander. lt was rather for a republic. The leaders were not respected. They used very gross language about the Queen.

Senator Gray. Was there any native propaganda of annexation sentiment prior to the events you have recited?


Mr. Alexander. I should say not any native propaganda. The Advertiser, a paper published and edited there by a radical man, was challenged by the organ of the other side to define its position on the question. The editor of the Advertiser said that annexation would be better for the country; that whenever the native people wished it, were ready for it, he would favor it.

Senator Gray. He was what you call a radical annexationist?

Mr. Alexander. That is, more outspoken. Dr. McGrew and others were always in favor of it.

Senator Gray. But the general sentiment there prior to those events was one of content and quiet so far as the Government under the cabinet was concerned?

Mr. Alexander. The general sentiment was that so long as we could have a stable government, one that could paddle its own canoe, they were satisfied. They thought their own interests would be better managed by their own people, and the planters were influenced by a desire for cheap labor, whilst others did not like the McKinley tariff, did not want to come under it. They did not want to undergo again what they had undergone under Kalakaua.

Senator Gray. The state of feeling was quiescent?

Mr. Alexander. Yes.

Senator Gray. And the disposition was manifestly one to be content with the then state of things?

Mr. Alexander. Yes.

The Chairman. In regard to this change in the form of government there, the revolution was, according to your opinion, belief, and judgment caused more by the passage of the opium and the lottery bills, or by the action of the Queen in attempting to change the constitution?

Mr. Alexander. More by the latter.

The Chairman. Do you think the people of Hawaii would have set on foot a revolution in order to get rid of the lottery bill or opium bill, or both, if the Queen had not attempted to promulgate the new constitution?

Mr. Alexander. I think not. They would have tried to remedy it in some constitutional way, within the constitution.

Senator Butler. You speak of the Queen having expressed her intention of withdrawing her purpose to promulgate the new constitution. Did you not say that in your written statement?

Mr. Alexander. Yes; she announced that on Monday morning.

Senator Gray. You heard that on Saturday afternoon?

Mr. Alexander. Her language then was only for a short time, only temporarily.

Senator Butler. Is it your opinion that that announcement by the Queen would have restored order to this interference of which you speak?

Mr. Alexander. It came rather too late, and there was very little confidence in the Queen's word, or in the cabinet.

The Chairman. Tlie people distrusted the Queen and the cabinet?

Mr. Alexander. They considered it an extremely weak cabinet.

Senator Butler. You think, then, it was too late to check the movement that had been set on foot?

Mr. Alexander. Yes.

Senator Butler. Against her and against her cabinet?

Mr. Alexander. Yes.

Senator Butler. You think the withdrawal of her purpose or retraction

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