February 1854

1 February 1854 • Wednesday

Commenced writing a letter in Native to the king [Kamehameha III]. We started after dinner for Hanapepe, afoot I bidding Waimea adieu, very probably, for the last time. I never staid in any place so long without becoming more attached to it; there is a feeling of loneliness about it to me, which I felt when I first came in sight of it, and which I have had more or less ever since. It is the jumping off place, it being, with the exception of the little island of Niihau, the farthest west of any place of this group—news is but rarely heard. We arrived after dark at Hanapepe.1

2 February 1854 • Thursday

Met this morning with the saints. I preached and was blessed much with the spirit and taught in relation to the press. Many came and contributed their mites.2 It was very windy making it tedious travelling to Lawai where we held a small meeting; Bro. Wm. & I spoke; the men were all, principally, off in the mountain, at work. Kept on to Koloa about three miles further, making about 8 or 9 miles from Hanapepe.

3 February 1854 • Friday

Stopped last night at Bro. Koakanu’s. This morning held meeting, not many in attendance. I spoke and was blessed in teaching. Bro. Wm. thought that he had better stay here over Sunday, and meet with them on that day. I was furnished with a horse to ride to Lihue, it being my intention to spend Sunday with the saints at Nawiliwili. I found all well at Bro. Burnham’s and some letters from for me; one from the valley from Bro. Joseph Cain, in which he says he has written several to me, and that Elizabeth [Hoagland] has written often, which I have not received; he passes quite an eulogium on Elizabeth. He speaks very highly of the last conference, which the minutes of which I have read in papers sent to Bro. Wm., and says that 100 brethren have been drafted to go among the indians to preach the gospel to them.3 The City wall is progressing and the streets are being improved, and, he says, it has the appearance of an Eastern City around the Council House—all life and business and built up.4 He says he thinks that Uncle will be off again next spring. Bro. Willard Snow died on his passage from Denmark to England.—I received also a letter from Bro. [Judson] Gaston, <San Francisco,> formerly belonging to the islands and baptised here, stating his prosperity and wishing me to write to him. Received a letter also from Bro. Johnson stating that Bro. Lewis had arrived safe and had taken possession of Bro. D’s shop and that Bro. McBride had left for the coast with the consent of all.5 I received letters in conjunction with Bro. Wm., being directed to us both, from Bros. Hy. & Lewis and Uaua, and I received letters myself from Bros. Napela & Kapahi. The Conference was appointed to be held at Honolulu. All wrote encouragingly. I was warmed at all the news I received, and the instruction given in the papers acted as a spur to me and I pray unto the Lord my God that I may be able to observe all that is taught, for it will exalt me if I only obey it.

4 February 1854 • Saturday

Went to Nawiliwili and met with Bros. [Toma] Paku & Kimo, who had come from Honolulu to labor on this island.6 We were unable to meet this afternoon, all the brethren having gone off to get food for the morrow. Returned to Bro. B.’s.

5 February 1854 • Sunday

Descended to meeting; two were baptized last evening. Bro. Paku preached and I followed bearing testimony &c. In afternoon attended to the Lord’s supper—I spoke and was followed by several of the brethren, Kimo, Koakanu & Paku. I spoke on the press &c.

6 February 1854 • Monday

Bro. Wm. arrived from Koloa, afoot, about 11 o’clock. I received a note from a half white, W. P. Ragsdale, who was in prison on a charge of embezzling &c. desiring to see me, he says he is believing the doctrine. We went down to see him. He protests his innocence. We told <him> if so that all would be right, if he would put his trust in the Lord. Wrote a letter to Bro. Keeler. I forgot to mention that it was suggested by the Doctor [Willard Richards] in the “News” that we should get an a printing office of our own.7

7 February 1854 • Tuesday

Writing &c. Finished a letter to Bro. Joseph Cain; wrote to Bro. Gaston, San Francisco, Cal. & to Bro. Lawson, Kailua, Hawaii.

8 February 1854 • Wednesday

We started this morning from Bro. Burnham’s, Lihue, in company with Bro. Paku, he and Kimo having come up from Nawiliwili this morning; Kimo was appointed to labor over at Koloa, Lawai and the adjacent places. About ¾ of a mile we came to a creek over which we contrived to jump, we then passed inside of a low ridge of hills, they lying between us and the sea and forming a valley beautifully situated and of considerable extent bounded on the other side by a range of mountains, whose sides were precipitous and forming an amphitheatre. The valley was covered considerably with the timber of the species called Koa, embellishing the land and making pretty scenery;8 it was in fact the prettiest valley that I have seen since I left the continent. We came after <about> four miles to Wailua river; the bluffs were high on each side, the valley rather a narrow one. When we came to the top of the hill to descend the fragrance that came wafted on the breeze from the valley beneath, was delightful; it was the perfume of orange and other trees and a vine called by the natives maile.9 The orange trees looked splendid with their profusion of golden fruit, being in admirable contrast with the dark green hue of the foliage of the tree. We had to wade the river which ran quite strong making it difficult to wade cross without getting our clothes wet. On the top of the opposite bank is a very good dwelling house and out buildings, the residence of the proprieter of these grounds, a Mr. Turner; he was not at home; we were invited in by Mr. Seen<e>y and ate dinner. We turned out of our road to see the waterfall of Wailua; it was a splendid sight, ahead of any thing I ever saw in the shape of a waterfall; it is about [blank] feet [80 feet] high; the water in its descent reminded me of the flakes of falling snow. It was worth several miles travel to see it and the surrounding scenery, which was splendid, vegetation being very luxuriant. We soon came to another stream which was another fork of Wailua, we had to pull off our pants to get across, which afforded us much laughter and we thought that the fashion of the natives of travelling without their pants had its conveniences. We soon came into another very fine valley of considerable extent and crossed a good many creeks but were relieved from the necessity of wading by Bro. Paku meeting a friend who turned over his horse to him, and which we used, very much to our satisfaction, in crossing streams. We passed Kealia stream, a wide rapid creek; it is about 12 miles from Lihue. This is the land that the brethren had thought would be suitable for a gathering place if it could be procured on reasonable terms; it belonged to Haalelea. It looked rather high and bleak where we crossed it. Bro. Wm. said it was the most unfavorable portion of the land. Two large water courses ran down the land in favorable situations for watering; they were in disuse. Timber was plentiful a short distance inland. Bro. Wm. said it was from 2 to 3 miles to the beach. We went about three miles further & crossed a large stream at a village called Anahola where we stopped all night with Bro. Paku’s friend; had a good deal of conversation about the gospel. About 15 miles to this place.

9 February 1854 • Thursday

After breakfast started and crossed several streams and passed thro’ a village called Moloaa where a Catholic Priest had fixed his residence. We arrived at Pilaa, Koolau, after about 6 or 7 miles travel and stopped at the house of Mr. Standefer, he having left orders for us to be provided for and lodged when we arrived. He had left for Lihue. This place is as pretty a situation for a few families as any I have seen on the islands—timber plentiful and land good; corn and beans were planted and growing. I afterwards learned that insects and grubs eat every thing off so much that it did not pay to follow farming. Mr. S. was obliged to give it up.10 We were very comfortably entertained. Rained this evening.11

10 February 1854 • Friday

We started this morning and crossed several streams, some of which were bridged—one was a good sized one; also another at Kalihiwai, where we stopped, which we crossed in a canoe. Held meeting Bro. Paku spoke and I followed. We stopped with Naehu, the Presiding Priest of this place.

11 February 1854 • Saturday

We started after meeting and breakfast this morning for Hanalei and passed thro’ Kalihikai, about 2 miles from Kalihiwai, where Elder Pi resided and where we administered to two who were sick, and thro’ Wanini, another small village and arrived at Hanalei about 5 or 6 miles travel. The steamboat was here loading intending to start for Honolulu this afternoon—I wrote a note to the brethren. This is beautiful valley, the river here is a very pretty stream the largest and prettiest I have seen on these lands. There are two coffee plantations here which are very productive. The coffee looks very pretty growing in rows 9 feet by 8, and averaging 1½ <lb> to the bush. Vegatation was most luxuriant in this valley—rain is quite frequent. On the other side of the valley and of the river was the missionary residences and meeting and school houses, &c. at a place called Waioli. We stopped at the house of Bro. Kapalehua, a priest, who feasted us on oranges. We stopped about an hour and then returned.12

12 February 1854 • Sunday

Met this morning early and after breakfast held public meeting, I preached followed by Bro. Paku. We went this morning before meeting to see one of the priests here administer the ordinance of baptism, he was so awkward that we had to <tell> Bro. Paku to go in and show him how it ought to be done. We had heard before that the ordinance had been administered improperly in consequence of the awkwardness and ignorance of the persons officiating, the body not being always covered or immersed in the water, and when we saw this man baptize it made us feel the necessity of what we had before talked about—re-baptizing all the branches that had not been baptized by others than those whom we knew to have knowledge and experience in such matters. Accordingly we had all the brethren and sisters who were <here> assemble to the edge of the river and there had them covenant again with the Lord. I officiated in baptizing and Bros. Farrer and Paku done the confirming assisted by two other native elders. I baptized 93, six of these had never were new converts.13 In afternoon we attended to the Lord’s supper, I preached <as> also Bros. F & P.14

13 February 1854 • Monday

We started back on foot this morning after early meeting and breakfast.15 Ate dinner at Mr. Standefer’s, Pilaa, and reached Anahola where we stopped at the house of Kolia, formerly judge of this district. I preached to them this evening sitting in my chair, explaining to them the primary principles of salvation; they listened attentively and seemed to believe. They treated us very kindly.

14 February 1854 • Tuesday

Nine presented themselves for baptism this morning; five men & four women—after explaining to them the nature of the ordinance I baptized them. We concluded to stay here to-day. Bro. Paku baptized five more. Held meeting this afternoon. Oranges were plentiful here and I wished that they were in <the> valley for those I love, to eat.16 Commenced a letter to Elizabeth.

15 February 1854 • Wednesday

Held meeting this morning and after breakfast started, and, after a wearisome travel, arrived at Lihue and found all well. The steamboat is expected to sail to Honolulu, to-morrow or next day.

16 February 1854 • Thursday

Writing &c.17 The steamboat leaves to-morrow. Wrote a letter to Elizabeth.18

17 February 1854 • Friday

Writing &c. I bade farewell with reluctance to Bro. Burnham and family to Bro. Wm. [Farrer]; Bro. B. & family have treated me, as usual, with extreme kindness. I got down <just> in time for the steamboat and embarked and was soon suffering from the effects of seasickness. I suffered severely all night.

18 February 1854 • Saturday

Arrived in Honolulu this morning and found the brethren, [Philip] Lewis, [Benjamin] Johnson, [Nathan] Tanner, [Henry] Bigler and [James] Hawkins and Sis. [Jane] Lewis, all here—they were all well with the exception of Sis. L.19

19 February 1854 • Sunday

Attended Bible Class; afterwards attended to public meeting and spoke, followed by Bro. Hawkins; a very good attendance. In afternoon I spoke followed by Bro. H. In evening while at supper Bros. [Francis] Hammond and [John] Winchester stepped in having just arrived from Lahaina; we were surprised and glad to see them. They left all well. Bro. Tanner was intending to go to the coast to endeavor to raise a vessel for the transportation of the native saints, he being a counsellor of Bro. Lewis, and they having thought it wisdom to go into this operation. Bro. T. was <is> sanguine in the belief that a vessel can be raised on the coast by proper representation for this purpose, the means to be raised from the saints, if possible, in California.20 In consequence of this arrangement the presidency counselled <us,> the brethren us who came first, to stay until the general conference which had been postponed to the 24th of July, with the promise that if they would stay they should be blessed and their way should be opened, and that every exertion would be made to assist them to get off.21 I felt much rejoiced to see Bro. Hammond and Bro. W.22

20 February 1854 • Monday

Variously engaged. I had some conversation with Bros. Lewis, Tanner and Johnson in relation to the propriety of gathering the saints on these lands and to the coast &c. during which I made many remarks and expressed my feelings freely, in a manner that I would not have done had I been apprised that when I arrived that this plan had been deemed wisdom and decided upon by the majority of the presidency here; as it was, I was not aware of this fact, it having been merely stated to me that such a project was in contemplation, until this evening when I learned that my this expressal of my opinions was uncalled for, (in a kind of a little counsel meeting which had been called by Bro. Lewis to get the feelings of the brethren in regard to continuing our efforts to gather the people on these lands, as bef previously contemplated at last conference,) and that also learned for the first time that it had been adopted by Pres. L. & T. as proper and expedient, and that they wished to have our faith and prayers to support this enterprise.23

21 February 1854 • Tuesday

Wrote a letter to Bro. [William] Farrer, Kauai.24 Attended officer meeting.

22 February 1854 • Wednesday

Attended meeting up the valley. Bro. [William] Uaua presented me with three shirts & pants.25

23 February 1854 • Thursday

Received a letters from Bro. [James] Keeler, [Edgerton] Snider, and [Reddick] Allred. Went and had a long conversation with Haalelea on various principles and in relation to a piece of land suitable for gathering—we were not able to come to any arrangement suited <to> our means.26 Bro. Hawkins was unwell to-day.

24 February 1854 • Friday

Attended meeting up the valley at Nuuanu and had a very good meeting.

25 February 1854 • Saturday

Expecting horses to take us over to Kaneohe to the meeting for the morrow, but as they did not arrive, Bro. Hammond and I started afoot with the intention of sleeping up the valley at Nuuanu and cross the mountain early in time for meeting. Bro. Hawkins, being unwell, rode a horse that I had brought down yesterday. We were well entertained all night and before dark we were joined by Bro. Uaua who stayed with also us.

26 February 1854 • Sunday

Unwell throughout night. A person came, a young man, very early this morning and requested me to baptize him, which I did. The brethren, Bro. Mahoe &c., furnished Bro. Hammond and me with horses; we started before breakfast and rode about a mile and a half; the road was muddy and ascending. When we arrived at the top of the ascent, or the head of the valley, we found ourselves at the top of a precipice of several hundred feet height, which formed part of a range of mountains.27 It was surprising to come to such place so unexpectedly, it reminded <me> of the extinct crater Haleakala, and looked to me like the edge of a volcanoe—the valley lay directly at our feet and looked very pretty. The road was hewn out of the solid rock for some distance. When we were riding up to the head of the valley the wind blew very strong and as we neared the precipice it increased in violence to such an extent that it was positively dangerous sitting on a horse, in fact Bro. Hammond had a narrow escape thro’ losing his balance by the force of the wind and was carried in dangerous proximity to the edge of the precipice.28 We arrived at Kaneohe and found breakfast prepared. Held meeting a pretty good attendance, Bros. Hammond & Uaua preached followed by me, we had a good time. After meeting eleven came forward requesting baptism. I officiated by the request of Bro. Hawkins and the candidates. In afternoon Bro. Hawkins spoke and I followed and spoke about the press, Book of Mormon &c. &c. and also <on> the nature of the Lord’s supper, which we administered. After meeting went about 2 miles, to Heeia [He‘eia] and held meeting, Bro. Hammond & I preached. We stopped here all night.

27 February 1854 • Monday

Held meeting early this morning, and after breakfast, went over to Kaneohe and met with the officers giving them instruction. Ate dinner and Bro. F.A.H. [Hammond] and I started for Honolulu leaving Bro. Hawkins there. Arrived at Honolulu and found some papers from home and an almanac [Deseret Almanac], but no letters except one from Ohio, desiring me, if I could, to give him, the writer, information as to the date of the death of Bro. [Ebenezer] Lindenberger, there being some property pending on the date of his decease. The Papers were filled with precious instruction, teaching, warming and filling my soul with joy and a desire to press forward and increase in doing all required of me. I was much disappointed in not receiving any letters.

28 February 1854 • Tuesday

Writing &c. one letter for Bro. [J. W. H.] Kauwahi, one to Bro. R. [Reddick] N. Allred, one to Bro. [Thomas] Karren and brethren on Hawaii, stating my intention, the Lord willing, to meet with <them> in their island conferences, if they would arrange the time of conference so that I could be with them. I desired Bro. Kauwahi to join me and go with me to the different islands. Bro. Bigler has appointed the 12th of March as day of conference for this island in order to allow me time to meet with Bro. [John] Woodbury, on Molokai, on the 20th. of March, and with the brethren on Maui, on the 6th of April. Bro. Hammond sailed for Lahaina.

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February 1854, The Journal of George Q. Cannon, accessed May 23, 2024 https://www.churchhistorianspress.org/george-q-cannon/1850s/1854/02-1854