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Reports of Committee on Foreign Relations 1789-1901 Volume 6 pp814-815 300dpi scan (VERY LARGE!)

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was made to me, nor was I aware that either Minister Stevens or Capt. Wiltse would assist or did assist the citizens of Honolulu in establishing the Provisional Government, or in overthrowing the monarchy. It was evident to me that the overthrow of the monarchy was due to its own inherent rottenness.

G.N. Wilcox.

Subscribed and sworn to before me this 4th day of December, A. D. 1893.


Charles F. Peterson,
Notary Public.


Hawaiian Islands, Honolulu, Oahu, ss:

John Emmeluth, being duly sworn, deposes and says as follows, to wit: I was born in Cincinnati, Ohio, and came to this country in February, 1878, and have been here since that time engaged in my business of tinsmith and plumber. I have accumulated some property and am married to a resident of the islands. I was nominated a member of the committee of public safety and was appointed one of the advisory council of the Provisional Government.

I know James H. Blount from seeing him once when I called with other members of the advisory council. The visit was never returned. He never said anything to me about the country, its resources, or history, or asked me any questions about the revolution. I tendered my statement through Mr. S.M. Damon, and understood that I would be notified when Mr. Blount was ready, but never heard anything from him.

Prior to the 14th of January I had become aware that a new constitution was to be promulgated and of the tenor of it by reason of a conversation between Arthur Peterson and John F. Colburn that I accidentally overheard in the office of John F. Colburn while I was waiting for his brother, the drayman. I stepped to the rear entrance of the warehouse, which is immediately adjoining his little private office, and while standing there I overheard Arthur Peterson remark to Colburn that the Queen had decided to promulgate a new constitution and that she would have no minister that would not agree to signing it and assisting in its promulgation, and that if he, Colburn, were agreeable to that that under the circumstances he could have the portfolio of minister of the interior.

This was on the Thursday previous to the announcement of that Colburn-Peterson cabinet. Colburn asked Peterson who the other members of the cabinet would be, and he told him Sam Parker and Billy Cornwell. Colburn agreed to go into that cabinet under those circumstances, and Peterson told him to go to the Queen with as little delay as possible and tell her that he was willing to go under that arrangement. I went back to my store, and standing in the front door within three minutes after Colburn came out in his brake, drove up along Nuuana to Merchant and up Merchant street, which leads to the palace. That was the last I saw of him that day. On the afternoon of the 14th, after the prorogation, it was noised about the town that the constitution would be promulgated. During the early part of the day I saw the members of the committee of the Hui Kalaaina that were to carry the constitution to the Queen to be signed.

Among the supposed members of that committee of the Hui Kalaaina


I recognized at least twelve of the Queen's personal retainers, and the rest of them were men so old and decrepit that they would not know what they were doing in a matter so important, and there was not a solitary member of that committee that could have stated any ten good reasons why he wanted a new constitution, and I felt in my mind at the time that it was a crime to permit anything of that kind to go on. I was very busy that day my line of work, and about 2 o'clock, in going out to Waikiki, I saw the crowd gathering and heard that they were discussing the matter of promulgating the constitution, and on my way back I came in on horseback. Just as I got to the palace gate the Queen stepped out on the balcony upstairs and addressed the natives that were gathered in the grounds there.

They came together, and I rode on horseback about half way into the yard, sufficiently far in to hear what she had to say, and in Hawaiian she addressed them and told them that owing to the perfidy of her ministers she was unable to give what they and she so much cherished, but that she would guarantee them that within the following week they should have the constitution. I was not aware at that time that there had been any meeting of citizens. Not until I was on my way home I met Judge Hartwell and he told me of it. The following morning I was told that there was to be a meeting at the house of W. R. Castle, and that I was expected to be there. I went over and had a conversation with Mr. Thurston at the time, and spoke of the situation. At a meeting later in the day I attended, and from that time on became an active participant.

The committee of public safety had as a basis for organization the different companies of the old Honolulu Rifles. Taking them as a basis they worked up the membership by taking the old lists and finding as many as were in town of the old members and getting their consent to work for the cause. Company A is the only one I can speak of; every member of the old company under Capt. Ziegler that was at hand signified his willingness to stand by this movement. The membership, if I recollect Capt. Ziegler's conversation, was 63 at the time of disbanding, and of the 63, 60 reported for duty. There never was at any time any anticipation on the part of the committee as a whole or of myself or any of the other members, to my knowledge, that the forces of the Boston were to land for the purpose of assisting the committee.

After we had seized the Government building and while the proclamation was being read, Company A drew up in line on each side of the building. Members of Company B, if I recollect right, came up in front and a third company in the rear of building; in all, I should say, about 180 men arrived within the five minutes. Of Company A everyone had his arms, his Springfield rifle, and the other companies were armed with private weapons and such as they could gather together, but they were all armed, all of those 180 men. A little after the reading of the proclamation the committee retired into the office of the minister of the interior and there congregated around the large table. I don't remember in what order they came, but among the business transacted was the sending out of notices to the different representatives of the foreign powers of the establishment of a government de facto.

There was an order issued to close the saloons. I forget what time martial law was declared. I doubt if I could give the events in the succession in which they occurred. I remember the individual instances. I distinctly recollect young Pringle coming in there and taking observations. I remember Lieut. Lucien Young coming in there,

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