970-971

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Reports of Committee on Foreign Relations 1789-1901 Volume 6 pp970-971 300dpi scan (VERY LARGE!)

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The Chairman. "What was the first thing the committee did after organization?

Mr. McCandless. The first thing? The doors were closed and some one said: "Gentlemen, we are brought face to face with this question. What shall we do?" And there was but one sentiment prevailed: "The Queen has violated the constitution, and we have to carry it to the end; we can not live in this country; we have to resist that or leave the country."

The Chairman. Whom did you select as chairman of that meeting?

Mr. McCandless. Mr. Cooper.

The Chairman. Did you come to any resolution as to what you would do in the way of resisting?

Mr. McCandless. If you will allow me to go back just a little— a couple of hours.

Senator Butler. Did you keep any minutes of your proceedings?

Mr. McCandless. We did not care to keep any minutes then. We were going in to a ticklish business.

Senator Butler. You did not keep any minutes?

Mr. McCandless. I think there were some slight notes. The hardware stores closed at 1 o'clock; but about half past 2 o'clock they all opened again to deal out ammunition and guns to the people, to those who wanted to buy them. Cecil Brown, who had been in the Wilcox cabinet, come to me and said: "You can get all the ammunition you need, if you have not enough." He said: "I have just got my arms." We began to gather up arms and ammunition. I sent my brother to the country to catch a late afternoon train and bring up his arms and ammunition. He had a cattle ranch about 7 miles from town. He went down and returned to town about 7 o'clock with his gun and ammunition. So we began as early as that to prepare to resist; the conclusion was arrived at—of course, it did not come off immediately— at that meeting. It was half past 4 or 5 o'clock when the committee of safety was appointed, and we appointed a committee to see what arms we could get. We discussed the situation and decided that we would go right on now, if we had the entire support of the white population— that we would go ahead and proceed to organize a provisional government.

The Chairman. Was there any resolution for the purpose of ascertaining whether you had the support of the population?

Mr. McCandless. No; and the first meeting was the next morning.

The Chairman. Sunday morning?

Mr. McCandless. Yes.

The Chairman. Where did you meet then?

Mr. McCandless. At W. R. Castle's.

The Chairman. Was he a member of that committee?

Mr. McCandless. I am not sure about that; I think he was not.

The Chairman. He was a friend to the movement at all events?

Mr. McCandless. Yes. We held the meeting, and one of the first things we decided was to hold a mass meeting and ascertain whether the public of Honolulu was in accord with that sentiment. If it was, we would go ahead and perfect the organization in the meantime as much as possible, and if, at the mass meeting, the whites showed they were anything like they were in 1887, we would proceed with the revolution. The first thing we did at the mass meeting was to send one of the members to a printing office for the purpose of putting out posters immediately.

The Chairman. When was that called?

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Mr. McCandless. At half past 1 Monday, the 16th.

The Chairman. The meeting was determined on and the posters were ordered printed on Sunday?

Mr. McCandless. Yes; and posted that day.

Senator Gray. Posted on Sunday?

Mr. McCandless. Yes.

The Chairman. Did you appoint any committee or take any steps in regard to the number of persons who would go into that meeting, and the extent to which they were to be supplied with arms and ammunition?

Mr. McCandless. I will have to go back of that a little. On Saturday afternoon the old officers of the Honolulu Rifles were there among the first men, and they hunted up the rosters of 1887 and hunted up every man they could find, to see how he was fixed for arms and ammunition.

The Chairman. Had that organization been dissolved?

Mr. McCandless. It was dissolved in 1890. It consisted of four companies— a battallion. The old officers began to get the men together and hunt up the arms and ammunition. Aside from still continuing to discuss the situation, they came to the conclusion to call a mass meeting. I do not recall anything that we did there of the details, but discussed the situation generally.

The Chairman. Did you find the movement was a strong one, both to numbers and as to the supply of arms and ammunition?

Mr. McCandless. We found arms and ammunition enough.

The Chairman. How about the men?

Mr. McCandless. That was the question—could we get the men. That was still in the hands of the officers of the different companies that had been organized in 1887 and disbanded in 1890, and they were working on that right straight along.

The Chairman. A sort of recruiting service?

Mr. McCandless. Just a recruiting service that was started before the committee of safety was organized.

The Chairman. When did you become satisfied that you had enough of military strength, consisting of soldiers, arms, and ammunition, to warrant you in starting on the work of revolutionizing the Government?

Mr. McCandless. We were satisfied of that on Monday morning from the reports of the officers of the different companies, and we were satisfied in this way; almost every man we went to said, "What is this for; annexation, or is this a repetition of 1887?" That would be the first question asked us, or asked anyone who was recruiting or talking on the subject. We said, "Of course, there is but one answer to it— provisional government, annexation, and wipe the monarchy out;" and they said they would be with us. Many of us were there in 1887 and took the same stand.

The Chairman. Now, at what time did you first see the proclamation of Liliuokalani after she had receded from her purpose of establishing this new constitution?

Mr. McCandless. That was about 10 o'clock Monday morning, I think. No; I beg pardon; I saw that in the Government building; I saw that about 9 o'clock.

Senator Gray. Saw what?

Mr. McCandless. That she would not attempt to promulgate the new constitution.

Senator Davis. Was it signed?

Mr. McCandless. It was signed. I saw the document. That would be another story. I had business at the foreign office about 9 o'clock


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