868-869

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Reports of Committee on Foreign Relations 1789-1901 Volume 6 pp868-869 300dpi scan (VERY LARGE!)

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a single thing gained by the Anglo-Saxon population that has not been shared with the Hawaiians. There has been no race feeling whatever on the part of the influential foreigner in the political reforms of recent years. One point showing race animosity on the part of Hawaiians was when the appointive power of the King for nobles was taken away from him and the nobles were made elective by the people. This was not to be by the fullest, broadest suffrage rights, but by limitations, educational and property, and the Hawaiians claimed that was inimical to them. But as a matter of fact there are a great many Hawaiians who are noble voters who are within those qualifications. I was present when some of the articles of that constitution were discussed, and I personally, with others, made a strenuous movement at the time, and it was pretty well supported, to make that property qualification less than was proposed, so as to take in the Hawaiian ministers. The Hawaiian ministers have, in a measure, been the backers of good government.

The Chairman. Let me ask you if these kindly measures and good efforts of the party which you now call the missionary party seem to have been influenced by the motive of selfish gain or aggrandizement, acquisition of power, or one of real generosity toward the people of Hawaii?

Mr. Oleson. I think it has been one of generosity toward the people of Hawaii; a movement in their own interest. You may speak of it as a selfish movement, if you take the demand and determination to have a good government as selfish interest. It was not any sordid movement; it had its source in moral considerations.

The Chairman. That has characterized the whole interests of Hawaii?

Mr. Oleson. Yes, one little fact will show you the character of the members of the Provisional Government and of the advisory council as men who, giving a great deal of valuable time to the necessary legislation of the present Government, are men receiving no salary whatever. The nobles received no salary whatever under the constitution of 1887.

The Chairman. Was there, at the date of this revolution, to your knowledge, any organization whatever, secret or open, for the purpose of dethroning the Queen?

Mr. Oleson. No.

The Chairman. Or for the purpose of annexing the islands to the United States?

Mr. Oleson. No.

The Chairman. If such an organization or combination had existed, would you have kncwn it?

Mr. Oleson. I would have known it.

The Chairman. Are you satisfied to state that there was no such organization ?

Mr. Oleson. Yes.

The Chairman. When did you first hear of the movement to dethrone the Queen?

Mr. Oleson. That was whispered after the mass meeting. Men came from that and said: "Why don't they do something?" Large powers were given to the committee of safety to go on and organize the government, and men said, "That means that the Queen is out."

The Chairman. That was the first time you heard of it?

Mr. Oleson. Yes.

The Chairman. After the mass meeting?

Mr. Oleson. Yes; I do not know that that committee, previous to

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the meeting, expected to be backed to such an extent as to warrant them to go on; but, as I say, that is my opinion.

The Chairman. Amongst the Americans there in Hawaii, since you have resided on the islands, has there been any evident disposition to promote annexation to the United States?

Mr. Oleson. There has been no concerted attempt; it has been written on publicly in the papers. Men have advocated it in the papers, and Hawaiians have advocated it more than the Americans.

The Chairman. Do you speak of the Kanakas?

Mr. Oleson. Native Hawaiians. I am not speaking of the white people.

The Chairman. You said the Americans?

Mr. Oleson. No, the Kanakas, the native Hawaiians.

The Chairman. That they have advocated it more strenuously than the white people?

Mr. Oleson. Yes. I mean in public.

The Chairman. Then it was a subject of open political discussion?

Mr. Oleson. Yes—only that it was not very common; once in a while there would be something about it in the papers; some one would say something of it.

The Chairman. It is a topic that has been discussed?

Mr. Oleson. Yes; for a good many years.

The Chairman. Has there been any disposition evinced, to your knowledge, of annexation to any other country, or toward claiming a protectorate of any other country than the United States?

Mr. Oleson. No. When that has been broached in my presence I have uniformly heard disapprobation of it. That is the sentiment of the native Hawaiians, Kanakas, as well as amongst the Americans, and also among many of the English.

The Chairman. Do you know whether they celebrate our National days there?

Mr. Oleson. Yes; the Fourth of July has been the celebration day since I have been in the country.

The Chairman. Do the Kanakas celebrate?

Mr. Oleson. They do not participate in the speeches; but they do in the sports, the prizes, etc.—boat races.

The Chairman. They enter with enthusiasm into the celebration as a national fete.

Mr. Oleson. Yes.

The Chairman. How about the Thanksgiving that is proclaimed by the President of the United States?

Mr. Oleson. That day is observed in a quiet way; it is a semiholiday— the Hawaiians do not size that up, quite.

The Chairman. I notice that Mr. Willis mentions that it is observed?

Mr. Oleson. It is observed; but not anything like the Fourth of July.

The Chairman. Would you say that there was a feeling amongst the general population, white and Kanaka, of the Hawaiian Islands of a decided character in favor of the United States as a friendly government, or as the one to which they would ultimately look for protection in any emergency?

Mr. Oleson. I think that that is the majority sentiment in that country among all classes.

The Chairman. Has it been such since you have resided there?

Mr. Oleson. No; I think it has been gradually growing, as men of


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