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October 1851


1 October 1851 • Wednesday

Got into the harbor by sunrise. I went in search of Bro. Lewis and found him living in a house belonging to Mr. [J. (Iaone) W. E.] Maikai. Bro & Sis. [Jane] L. were both well. After eating breakfast we went and seen Mr. Wylie [Robert Wyllie] the Minister for Foreign Affairs [Relations]. He recommended an interview with the American commissioner Luther Severance Esqr. As I was rather weak and he lived up the [Nu‘uanu] Valley some distance, we thought we would defer it until the morrow. A Native by the name of [J. W. H.] Kauwahi who had been baptised by Bro. Farrer called in. He had been educated at Lahainaluna—He appears to be [the] most shrewd sound Native that I have conversed with upon the Islands. He is a lawyer and they say one of the best reasoners in the Nation; he was formerly very wild and carried on all kinds of mischief and from what I can learn there is considerable surprise at his reform. He is about 27 years old; and I think if he only does right, he will be capable of doing a good work here.

2 October 1851 • Thursday

As Bro. Kauwahi was busy teaching the natives; we thought it best to ordain him a teacher; we attended to the ordination this morning.—We went and seen the Gov. of Oahu [Mataio Kekuanaoa] this morning to get a written permission from him to preach upon this Island—he took our names and said he would consider about it to-day and send us a note to our house. We then went up and seen Mr. Severance and stated our business &c. our object in coming to the Islands and the interruption we had met with &c.—He said that we had better wait a little and see what action the Governor would take upon our application; our interview was about an hour and a half conversing upon Deseret &c. our doctrine &c. He expressed a wish to read the Book of Mormon which Bro. Lewis promised to lend him.

3 October 1851 • Friday

Waiting all day to hear something from the Gov. but did not receive any news.

4 October 1851 • Saturday

Called this morning to see the Governor who told us that it was John Young’s business to give us what we desired or that he was the proper person to apply to. We went to Mr. Young’s house, he is Minister of the Interior, but we did not find him. Bro. Lewis proposed that we should go up and see Mr. S. as he had the Book of Mormon along to loan him. We had an hour or two conversation with him—He said we had better defer our interview with John Young until Monday as his brother the Governor of Maui [James Kanehoa] was dead. This evening we were gladdened by a visit from Bro. Hy. [Henry] W. Bigler. Baptised 3 natives this evening

5 October 1851 • Sunday

Bro. B. & I went to the Native Meeting House. Mr. [Richard] Armstrong preached. He is the best Native speaker I have heard and his sermon was a very good sectarian one. A woman had a fit in meeting and died in a few minutes. Baptised three natives

6 October 1851 • Monday

We went to Mr. Young’s house this morning and were directed to his office. We went to his office and <after> waiting sometime we were he made his appearance. We stated to him they object of our visit—that we wished to get a written privilege from [the] Government to preach without being molested upon the Islands—we told him what trouble we had been put to through the molestation of certain persons.—After some conversation upon the subject—he said if we would write out what we wanted as there would be a Privy Council to-day—he would present it and grant us what we desired.

Bro. Lewis wrote a short statement of our object in coming and that we wished to be protected by the laws in our worship &c.1—We returned and handed it to the clerk who took it to him in Mr. Armstrong’s the Minister of Public Instruction’s office. Mr. A. translated it for him and then we were requested to step in. Mr. A. acted as spokesman for Mr. Y. he not being able to speak but little English; he said that the laws were sufficiently ample to protect us without anything further. I spoke in Native to Y. & endeavored to show him the necessity Mr. A. said if it was his case he should apply to the law. We had quite a talk upon the subject but to no purpose. It was very evident that Y. was but a tool and that what A. said was law to him. We went from there to Mr. S’s and told him the result of our application stating that we wished something to show that the Government did not justify such proceedings. He promised to write to the Minister of Foreign Relations [Robert Wyllie] upon the subject. Bro. B. accompanied us to his house and afterwards bid us good bye. I was sorry to part with him he seems near to me. His progress has not been very rapid in the language—the great difficulty seems to be he cannot understand anything they say.

7 October 1851 • Tuesday

Engaged variously.

8 October 1851 • Wednesday

Went up this afternoon to see Mr. Severance;—we had some <further> conversation upon the doctrine; he said there were some things he liked about it, and wished to buy or otherwise get a copy of Bro. O. [Orson] Pratt’s pamp[h]let upon the discovery of the plates and our first principles [Remarkable Visions]. He had not received an answer to his [letter] to the Government.

9 October 1851 • Thursday

Engaged variously.

10 October 1851 • Friday

do. do.

11 October 1851 • Saturday

Went to Mr. Severance’s and received the answer to his application—he gave us a copy of his letter in which he set forth our character that we were energetic, &c. &c. and requesting for us the right to worship without molestation according to the laws of this nation;—also giving a short account of the interruption of our meetings and by whom &c. &c.2 Mr. Wylie had written to Mr. Armstrong the Minister of Public Instruction,—as this came more directly under his jurisdiction as Minsinister [sic] of Public Instruction. Mr. A’s letter was condemnatory of the proceedings of the Konohikis stating that as long as we observed the laws we should be protected—also that if he should be furnished by proo us with proofs and evidence they would take action upon it;—but in his opinion the readiest way to act would be to apply to the local tribunals upon the ground;3 Baptised 2 natives this evening.

12 October 1851 • Sunday

Attended the Bethel in company with Bro. L. this evening. Mr. [Rev. Townsend] Taylor preached his sermon was well calculated to tickle the ear.

13 October 1851 • Monday

Went to see Mr. [Charles] Hopkins Agent of the king’s lands to get the privilege of building a meeting House at Keanae; but did not find him at home.

14 October 1851 • Tuesday

do. do. do This [day] the king and Mr. H. sailed for Lahaina in His Majesty’s Yacht. I took passage in the Kaluna Bro. L. accompanied me to the wharf. I parted with Sister L. and him with regret.

15 October 1851 • Wednesday

I believe I never felt sea sickness more than I did this trip down to Lahaina. I was kept vomiting all night without scarcely any cessation. I sometimes thought that if our voyage was to have been of any length I should certainly die if I were to keep on at this rate. Arrived in Lahaina between 2 and 3 o’clock. I found Bro. Keeler from the Kula he had got tired of waiting and had come in to see what had become of me. They folks were all well. I found Bro & Sis. Hammond living with Bro. Kipp. Mr. Treat had got tipsey and had come home and beat his wife, and they had thought it best to leave. They were very glad to see me.

16 October 1851 • Thursday

I endeavored to get an interview with Mr. Hopkins but could not find him in.

17 October 1851 • Friday

do. do. do. Bros H. & Kipp went on board of Capt. Baker’s ship of Sag Harbor [New York] to-day—Had considerable conversation with him.

18 October 1851 • Saturday

Bros. Hammond & Keeler left this morning before daylight for Koolau;—Bro. H.’s idea in going was to learn the language speedily.

19 October 1851 • Sunday

Attended the Funeral of a merchant named Bush.

20 October 1851 • Monday

Had a short interview with Mr. Hopkins he was about to start for Honolulu;—he said the king was quite unwell and his physicians had forbid him attending to any business;—but said I had better call down to-morrow and see the princes.

21 October 1851 • Tuesday

Called at the residence of the king had some conversation with Lot [Lot Kapuaiwa] one of the young princes who referred me to his brother Rihoriho [Alexander Liholiho]4 the Heir Apparent to the Throne. R. was quite unwell and said he would <meet> me to-morrow morning at the house.

22 October 1851 • Wednesday

Went and seen Rihoriho—he speaks very fluently—he said that we should be protected by the laws, that they had no right whatever to interfere with us. In regard to the land he would have it enquired into as to its situation whether there were any claims upon it &c. and write to the Konohiki.

23 October 1851 • Thursday

I thought of returning to-day—but did not get ready soon enough to make a very early start and thought best to stay. Wrote to Bro. Hawkins, Hawaii [Hawai‘i]. Having received a letter from him yesterday.

24 October 1851 • Friday

Started this morning taking leave of the folks with reluctance. Arrived after dark at Waiakoa found all well. There were were [sic] two young men from Honuaula having come to see what had become of me.

25 October 1851 • Saturday

Held meeting this afternoon but very few in attendance. This <evening> I married Bro. Kaleohano and Sister Lilia Kaahanui.

26 October 1851 • Sunday

Preached this morning had a tolerably good attendance and a portion of the spirit. Also in afternoon.

27 October 1851 • Monday

Reading, writing in Journal &c.

28 October 1851 • Tuesday

Started this morning in company with one of the brethren and his wife for Honuaula. They spoke about me riding—but as there was no feed at H. I thought best to go on foot.5 I arrived there in evening tolerably well used up.

29 October 1851 • Wednesday

Meeting in morning and afternoon, not many in attendance—the people having gone principally to their farming lands.

30 October 1851 • Thursday

Meeting in morning; engaged reading &c.

31 October 1851 • Friday

do. do. do

Footnotes

  1. [1]Lewis wrote that the Latter-day Saints “have come to these Islands to promulgate the Gospel, and as we intend to preach nothing but what is contained in the Christian Bible, as set forth in the published Laws of this Government, respectfully ask to be protected in our rights in common with all other Christian denominations” (Lewis to Young, Oct. 6, 1851).

  2. [2]See Appendix 2, Item 8.

  3. [3]For Armstrong’s letter, see Appendix 2, Item 9. Farrer wrote that the letters promised the Latter-day Saints “equal protection with the other religious socities on these Islands” (Farrer diary, Oct. 29, 1851). Lewis concluded that Armstrong’s letter “being satisfactory to us no further procedings were required” (Lewis journal, Oct. 11, 1851). Cannon later noted of his visit to Honolulu:

    “The American Commissioner espoused our cause very warmly, and demanded of the government all the rights for us which were extended to any preachers. . . . The visit, altogether, was satisfactory and resulted in good.

    “I have found that nothing is ever lost by Elders standing up for their rights. People respect others who are spirited in claiming the privileges which belong to them; and no Elder should ever forget that he is the embassador of the King of Heaven” (Cannon, My First Mission, 41–42).

  4. [4]As members of the royal family, neither “Lot Kapuaiwa” nor “Alexander Liholiho” used a surname. Their names are given names only.

  5. [5]Cannon apparently began Wednesday’s entry following this sentence, but after writing the W he decided to add another line to Tuesday’s entry.