|Previous Page||Next Page|
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.
Subscribed and sworn to before me this 4th day of December, A. D. 1893.
Charles F. Peterson,
AFFIDAVIT OF JOHN EMMELUTH.
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,
and late in the evening I remember Capt. Wiltse calling on us. During the interval I remember Deputy Marshal Mehrtens coming in—that was a very short time after the Government was organized—with a request that the Government should go down to the station house aud meet the cabinet down there. They declined to do that, but sent a committee consisting of Sam Damon and C. Bolte to the station house. That committee afterwards returned with Sam Parker and Billy Cornwell.
Sam Parker and Billy Cornwell came in there and after a conversation they in company with Sam Damon, if my memory serves me right, went over to the palace to see the Queen. I am quite sure that Bolte didn't go with them on that errand. Sam Damon was the only one that went on that errand. Sam Damon returned after a time and it was then given out that the Queen had agreed to surrender under protest and that she would give instructions for the station house and the barracks to be given up to the Provisional Government. In the meantime we removed to the minister of finance's offices, and it was there that Sam Nowlein, in command of the Queen's military, late at night— it must have been 8 or 9 o'clock—reported to President Dole, and the President told him to keep his men together and all arms inside the barracks for the night; nothing should be disturbed, and he should simply carry on their routine duties within the inclosure for that night. Nowlein asked whether he would mount guard as usual in the palace inclosure, and he was told no.
The reason why I fail to recollect much of what transpired there was from early in the day, that is, very soon after our getting into the building, we agreed that all conversation should be conducted by Mr. Dole himself in order to prevent a confusion of ideas, and for that reason I did not store up things as rigidly as I might have done if I had a personal say in the matter. I was busy outside about the organization of our forces. I met a number of Company A, and as soon as Company A entered the building I went out and found the old stand-bys of 1887 and 1889 and had a conversation with them. They were all ready for doing any duty that was required of them, they were well armed and had ample ammunition.
I consider that the trend of things for twelve years back to my recollection has all been in the direction of the revolution, for the reasons of the corruptness of the Government; the debaucheries and social infamies that were being practiced constantly in and about the palace. I saw that those things could not go on in a community that claimed to be Christian, such a thing could only reach a certain state where public safety and the best interests of the nation would demand reform. From my knowledge of things and my observation of the workings of the monarchy I was thoroughly satisfied that it was only a matter of time when a different form of government would have to be established here, and very soon after my coming here I came to the conclusion that these Islands rightfully and justly belonged, on the point of both their dependence and proximity to the United States, I felt that they were a part and parcel of the American States, and I have been an annexationist for the last twelve years.
Insertion and corrections made by—
Subscribed and sworn to before me this 5th day of December, A. D. 1893.
Alfred W. Carter,
AFFIDAVIT OF F. W. McCHESNEY.
Hawaiian Islands, Honolulu, Oahu, ss:
F. W. McChesney, being duly sworn, deposes and says: I was born in Iowa, came to Honolulu in 1885, where I have since been engaged as a partner in the house of M. W. McChesney & Son in the wholesale grocery and feed business established in 1879, doing a large volume of business. I was a member of the committee of public safety and of the advisory council of the Provisional Government up to a few days prior to June 28th, 1893, on which day I went to the United States for a visit.
I saw James H. Blount land at Honolulu, but never met him nor had any conversation with him.
I signed a roll with other citizens in the office of W. O. Smith on the afternoon of Saturday, January 14, 1893, pledging myself as a special police officer in support of the cabinet against the proposed aggression of the Queen, and was in the same office at the meeting of citizens when the committee of public safety was appointed. There was talk at the meeting of the committee at W.R. Castle's, on the next (Sunday) morning, of having resolutions abrogating the monarchy and pronouncing for annexation, offered at the mass meeting; but it was decided to keep within bounds, while matters were to be made perfectly plain. It was reported by Mr. Thurston that the Queen's cabinet had gone back on us, so we decided to proceed without them.
I never understood at any time that the United States troops would fight our battles; they might come ashore to protect life and property and all of those who wanted to go to them during the rumpus, but they were not going to do any fighting for us. I thought we could overturn the Government on short notice after getting our men and arms together and then after our new Government was formed they would recognize us and protect us if any armed force was needed.
The committee of safety had taken pains to investigate the force opposed to us and found that the Queen had only 80 men at the barracks and that Wilson had about 125 regulars with possibly 75 special police, among whom were only about 12 or 15 white men, and the forces surrendered showed these to be facts.
Had fighting actually been necessary we would have had 600 men armed and with plenty of ammunition.
The committee agreed to go up to the Government building at 3 o'clock, and broke up at 2:30, when the shot was fired on the corner of King and Fort streets, and we said: "Now is the time to go." For it seemed as though the fighting would begin, so we all started at once. I jumped into a hack and went home for my pistol, and got back just as the others were entering the yard. They all walked up in plain view, and were pretty close together. When we first got into the building, after the proclamation was read, about 25 or 30 men of Ziegler's company came from the old armory, and then we adjourned to the minister of the interior's room to start up the new Government. We had sent word round to the different squads we had ready and waiting to be at the Government building at 3 o'clock. We counted on 100 men. But we got there ahead of time—at fifteen minutes before three—and after that they came in pretty thick; so that we must have had 150 men there. We addressed letters to the different ministers asking them to recognize us. To this letter Mr. Stevens sent an aid down (Mr. Pringle) to see if we actually had possession. Mr. Dole said: "You see we have
S. Doc. 231, pt 6----52
|Previous Page||Next Page|