The Church Historian's Press

May 1854

1 May 1854 • Monday

Attended early morning meeting, Bros Kailihune, Linn, Hoopiiaina and I, spoke; I enjoyed this meeting much. In afternoon held meeting and I was called upon to speak. I spoke on the object of our coming to meeting—to get spiritual food which a saint needed as much as he did temporal—on the object of our coming to the earth—on the necessity of fulfilling this object, and on the relationship we held to the Lord in Heaven. On these subjects I <was> blessed much in speaking;1 Bro. Redick followed and was also blessed.

2 May 1854 • Tuesday

At early morning meeting and enjoyed it much.2 We concluded to pursue our journey towards Hilo, before starting I wrote a long letter to Bro. [Francis] Hammond, Lahaina, in which I gave him a statement of my travels, success, &c. and also requested him to examine the laws of this kingdom which he had quite an opportunity of doing as he acted as interpreter for the Judge, and see whether the laws had actually been repealed which had been passed restraining the people from emigrating. Laws had been passed to keep the people from leaving these lands as Sailors on vessels only on the Captain giving bonds for their safe return, and also to keep the people from running off to the gold mines and suffer and perish. Judge [William] Lee had told Bros. Tanner and Reddin A. Allred that there was no law to prevent the natives emigrating, but if these laws are still in force, every exertion will be made to stop it, Judge Lee’s opinion to the contrary notwithstanding, as the missionaries and others will do all they can to stop it, for they well know that the moment that we succeed in accomplishing this that their influence and power will rapidly decline. For us to trust entirely to Judge Lee without consulting the written laws on the subject would be unwise, and if his opinion should be incorrect would only make us ridiculous if we should bring a vessel here to take them off.3—We administer<e>d yesterday to our host, Kawelo, he is a newly baptized member and has been very sick for a long time, his legs palsied, more or less, his bowels as though there was something alive in him, and his body affected all over; he had been doctored time and time again, on Oahu [O‘ahu], Maui, and this island, by all that he could hear about, until he got completely tired, without getting any relief. After we administered to him, I being mouth, he had repeated discharges from his bowels and improved immediately. We, Bros. Snider, Lawson, Keeler, [Reddick] Allred and myself, started about 1 o’clock leaving Bro. Linn there.4 We passed thro’ a good country for about 12 miles and stopped at Honokaa [Honoka‘a] for the night.

3 May 1854 • Wednesday

Raining this morning and cleared off about 11 o’clock when we started and arrived at Mr. Simmon’s after about 12 miles travel. We stopped here all night there were several white men here among the rest, Mr. Garrett, a man very well versed in Natural History and other matters. Mr. Simmons was absent, he is believing; his wife and five others requested baptism and we went and attended to it. Bro. Keeler officiated.

4 May 1854 • Thursday

Raining this morning, after breakfast <it> ceased and we started, we got wet somewhat; stopped where Bros. Napela and others had slept, and ate dinner with them. After passing up and down several (pali’s) steep hills, we arrived at Bro. Van Houtan’s [John Van Houten’s] about 4 o’clock p.m.; he was baptized by Bro. Karren; he was not at home having gone to Hilo. We held meeting of the natives and before meeting Bro. Karren arrived in the enjoyment of good health and spirits. It was a joyful meeting and we were refreshed. I spoke in meeting and was blessed much; an excellent spirit appears to prevail here.5

5 May 1854 • Friday

Attended early morning meeting, Bros. Allred, Keeler, and Napela spoke and I followed in a few remarks and was blessed with the spirit. I enjoyed it much. In afternoon held meeting again, Bro. Karren called on me and I spoke on the object of our coming here to the earth and how blessed we were in knowing the designs of the Lord in regard to us, &c., &c. I was blessed much on these subjects and the spirit was sensibly felt. Bro. Kailihune spoke also with great power. I baptized three—two men and one woman, by their request, this morning.6

6 May 1854 • Saturday

Attended early morning meeting; it was enjoyed much by us all. In afternoon held officer meeting, I spoke on the priesthood, the nature of their offices, their duties, &c., &c., and was much blessed on these subjects. Bros. Redick and Napela followed and were also blessed.

7–8 May 1854 • Sunday to Monday

Attended morning meeting with profit. Held Public meeting. I preached on the Book of Mormon and the coming forth of the work, followed by Bros. Napela and Keeler; the spirit was sensibly felt and we had a good time. In afternoon attended to the Lord’s Supper and much good instruction was given & all were edified. The native elders enjoy the spirit and are attaining to an excellent understanding of principle and of the nature of the work. O how grateful I feel to the Lord, when I hear <them> teaching the principles of salvation and reasoning on these things, bearing testimony solemnly and by the power of the spirit to the truth of this work of the Last Days and that Bro. Joseph [Smith] was indeed a holy prophet of God, that I was strengthened and enabled to stay and contribute somewhat, thro’ the spirit of the Lord, toward bringing them to a knowledge of these these things.7 Bro. Napela hired a canoe to go to Hilo to save the travel over the <bad> roads between here and there, and Bro. Karren and I concluded to accompany him, leaving Bros. Allred, Snider and Keeler to come along with the native brethren by land—Bro. Lawson had concluded to stop here until we returned. We embarked at Laupahoehoe about ½ past 12 at midnight; six of us in number, three of us and three of a crew. The moon went down about 2 o’clock; we had not much wind for some time and they had to row, we afterwards had a light wind but it was whiffling and the most of the distance had to be made by paddling; it rained some part of the time and was quite rough. I was seasick but vomited without having much nausea, but afterwards felt quite qualmish. It was very uncomfortable sitting in the canoe. Bro. Karren felt so very much. We landed about ½ past 12 at noon; it rained quite heavily when we landed and all afternoon.8

Hilo is situated on a beautiful bay of considerable extent, called Byron’s Bay, it is well sheltered and affords good anchorage, so I am told by the natives, at all times for vessels; it is a port of entry and often visited by whalers for recruits of provisions and water &c. It is an extremely fertile place, bread fruit,9 cocoa nut, banana and other trees grow in profusion, and all vega<ta>tion flourishes luxuriantly there. Mr. [Rev. Titus] Coan is missionary here, and another by the name of [Rev. David B.] Lyman has charge of a seminary here [Hilo Boys’ Boarding School]. The people appear to be much prejudiced against the truth, through the efforts of the Calvinist and Catholic Priests, who have and are doing all they can to stop its influence.

In travelling among this people I am much moved in witnessing their squalid and degraded condition, many of them are but little above the brutes; where we stopped, at the house of a relative of one of our brethren there being none baptized here, they had two pigs tied up in the house when we arrived, as well as a number of dogs; these animals were as much occupants of the room as the humans and had their accommodations on the mats equal with the rest, and are very frequently made the bosom companions of the women. Nature’s gifts are strown bounteously around this people, but they do not appreciate or make much use of the blessings the Lord has put in their reach, their living consisting principally of poi and fish, or meat of some kind; if they get this they are happy; but it is often the case that they do not have even this and they go hungry, and all for lack of thrift and industry and energy to put to a proper use the blessings around them; their climate is excellent, being quite equable and healthy; the soil as a general thing is <also> very thing good, and various kinds of fruit can be raised with very little care and rightly applied labor, that would contribute to make living luxurious.

9 May 1854 • Tuesday

A fine morning. Engaged writing. The brethren arrived about noon; on Tuesd they were quite tired. I wrote a letter to Bros. [Philip] Lewis & [Benjamin F.] Johnson, Honolulu, which I had commenced on the 5th, telling them of my labors, success, prospects &c. Commenced a letter to Bro. Albion Burnham, Kauai [Kaua‘i]. Four—three men and one woman, were baptized this evening by me; the first baptized in this place. Some appear to be anxious to hear in this place; there has been no preaching done until this evening in the native language, and then it was in a conversational style.10

10 May 1854 • Wednesday

Rather showery this morning. After breakfast we all started to ascend <to> the crater of Kilauea, the active volcanoe of this island; the most celebrated place in this ocean. I was anxious to see this place before I left for home, and as I am now on the island I think it best to take this opportunity of seeing it. We left about 7 o’clock on foot; the distance is about 30 miles; shortly after leaving we were overtaken by the rain and it poured down very heavily for about ¾ of an hour, my feet and legs were very wet as my shoes were bad, but, thanks to Bro. B. F. Johnson for kindly lending me his cloak to use while on this trip around the islands, I was my body was kept dry and comfortable. The road was generally good in many places, the roots of ferns, which grow in great profusion <all thro’ this country,> were laid crosswise making it good walking. We passed <thro’> a heavy body of timber about two or three miles wide; it grew very luxuriantly. It is a singular looking country along here for some miles; it is a rolling, pretty country, covered with Ki, fern, and occasional patches of timber; the soil was very rich in places, the latter part of the road, however, was pahoehoe or lava, whose scanty coatin covering of soil was worn off by constant travel of man and beast.11 In places this lava was very smooth and slippery, and, cooling as it ran, it had formed itself into fantastic shapes, reminding me of candy <in its appearance> that had been poured out, more than anything else. On each side of the road vegatation is very rank and the soil must necessarily increase in depth. We passed through several <small> villages <where> Kalo and other things were raised.

We stopped at the half way house, <(this land is called Olaa [‘Ola‘a])> thinking to stay all night, but in consequence of the bad spirit the man of the house manifested we left and went back about two miles and stopped with a young man by the name of Keawehiku, who, although a perfect stranger, very kindly and hospitably opened his house for us, bought food, killed a pig and furnished us, twenty of us in number including whites and natives, with everything in his power to make us comfortable. My heart was full of blessings for him and my prayer <is> that he may never want for anything. Bro. Napela had stopped back in Hilo to attend to some business and expected to come up with us in the evening, and had sent a note that he had procured from a relative <of his> to the people of this half way house, requesting them to entertain him and his party; he had also given the brethren some money to buy <food> for our trip, but this note, although written by a relative, a passport of great influence in this country among this people, did not have the least effect on this churl, Makua, by name, and he manifested such a spirit of extortion and unkindness, all his <desire> being, seemingly, to obtain money, that we were disgusted. Our host, Keawehiku, was present during the conversation, and when we were nonplussed, not knowing what <to> do in consequence of his exorbitant demands, he spoke up and said he wished he had met us down at his house that we might have stayed there and he would buy us food, for, said he, “the aloha (love) had sprung up in my12 heart for you.” We said we would accompanyied him back if it was agreeable; he readily assented, and we gladly accompanied him thinking the distance nothing to get away from that house, and feeling in our hearts that the Lord was ever mindful of us.13

11 May 1854 • Thursday

After breakfast we all started for the mountain, my shoes were very bad and Bro. Napela very kindly lent me his horse, one that he had procured from his relative in Waiakea, Hilo Bay; I felt grateful to him for his consideration. The young man who kept us last night volunteered for his services as Guide. We passed thro’ a country resembling in some respects the country of yesterday; timber is plentiful and the country is quite level; the roads is the principally lava (pahoehoe) and very hard on shoes &c. We arrived up at the crater a little before 3 o’clock p.m. We saw nothing to give us notice of our near approach to it until we were quite near, when we saw the steam rising from numerous fissures and pits around on the surface of the ground around the crater; the ground is nearly level, a little ascending, up to the crater; in the distance Mauna Loa looms up with its regular and dome like surface.

The crater of Kilauea is nothing like as large or deep as Haleakala, it is about <variously estimated at from nine [hundred] to 1500 ft> deep and <from nine to 15> miles in diameter <circumferance>,14 the sides are rather precipitous, the bottom is not very uneven to look at from the surface of the ground, some few hills, more particularly around the pit at present in action; our guide told us that he had seen the whole bottom of the crater alive and heaving and rolling like the waves of the sea. As the main part of the company had not come up, we deferred our descent until morning and employed ourselves in visiting the pits and fissures from whence the steam issued.

There is a hill that we visited called by the natives the Kiona [dung heap or privy] where there are a great many chimneys out of which a sulpherous steam arises, very strong and hot, reminding me, by the smell, of the hot springs in the [Salt Lake] Valley; the smell is much stronger here. Here we collected some specimens of brimstone and alum; this country in the vicinity of the crater seems to be over a bed of fire. We found a spring of water quite near to the edge of the precipice which our guide informed us was formed by the condensation of the steam on the surrounding bushes, and could only be procured when the North Wind blew—he said if there was a South Wind the water would not collect <as it carried the steam from the bushes.> Ohelos, or Whortleberries,—grow plentifully around here, but <many> of the natives, I understand, are so super[s]titious that they will not touch them, as they say it will be sure to rain and they will be apt to perish with cold. The pit is called by the natives Ka lua o Pele, (The pit of Pele.) “Pele” was believed, and is also at the present time [believed] by many, to be a Goddess, a real personage, a younger sister of Papa, the wife of Akea, the woman that brought forth the islands, their mother according to the old legend; the first born being Hawaii [Big Island], and <the> last Kauai and Niihau [Ni‘iahu]. She, “Pele,” came from Kahiki, (foreign lands) with her brothers and sisters, and lived first at Kauai, from there to Oahu, thence to Molokai [Moloka‘i], thence to Maui, and finally took up her residence on this island, Hawaii, where she still continues to maintain her residence it. The Hawaiians believed in a plurality of gods, and “Pele” was worshipped in conjunction with the rest, and had her devotees and priests, as well as the rest: her place of residence or lua, was believed to be the place where all the spirits of good chiefs and men went to dwell, the bad ones going to the po or place of darkness in the centre of the earth,—the dominions of Milu, the <Pluto of the> Hawaiians.

These superstitions and <this> belief is still very common among them, more common than anyone would imagine who had <not> conversed with them in their own language on these things; they are wedded to these things and all the labors of the missionaries have not been able to eradicate them15 things from among them. I have heard them talk on these things with all the gravity imaginable, and with, <apparently,> the greatest, <kind of> faith and earnestness; and I have heard good Calvinistic church members, men that <had been> under the constant teachings of the missionaries for years and years, tell about the prophets or priests of “Pele” summoning the spirits of any of the chiefs that they wished by their incantations, or causing the volcanic fires to increase and burn more brightly or spread as they wished, with as much faith as they would about any portion of the scriptureal history.

Towards four or five o’clock the natives had all arrived; they had brought up a large calabash of poi on a pole between two of them, and a hog that had been killed and cooked in the ground by the orders of Bro. Napela who was caterer for the party; every one had also brought a small bundle of pai ai, (kalo pounded and wrapped in ki leaves,) which was mixed by them after they arrived into poi, Meat is sweeter, I think, cooked as this people cook it than any other way I ever ate it: they make a round hole in the ground, varying in size according to the quantity to be cooked, and then build a fire, then they pile a large quantity of stones on the fire, when they are thoroughly heated they are spread over the bottom of the hole and on the sides; if kalo is to be cooked, (for this is also their mode of cooking it,) it is piled on these <stones> in a conical form and then covered thickly with leaves, on the leaves there is a coat of dirt thrown up of sufficient thickness to prevent the escape of heat or steam and just before closing it up entirely with dirt, there is a bucket or two or water poured in to be converted into steam by the heat of the stones, and this cooks the food. In this manner meat is also cooked, with the exception of not pouring water in as with the kalo; if a hog, it is filled with heated stones, pockets being made in the fore shoulders for the insertion of stones, water is then poured into it to create steam, and it is laid on the stones, leaves being first laid to keep it from sticking to the stones or burning, and it is then covered as the kalo. Two were baptized by the native elders at Olaa on their way up.16

12 May 1854 • Friday

It had rained nearly all night, as the sun rose it cleared off. We got ready and started down without eating breakfast deferring it until we returned; we were all provided with good light poles to use as walking canes which we found to be of great benefit in walking over the lava and the places that looked as if the crust was not sufficiently strong to bear our weight, by trying first with our poles its strength we escaped the danger of breaking through and getting hurt or burnt. The descent was easily effected, and was not very abrupt at this part of the pit, trees and shrubs growing down to the edge of the lava. The appearance of the lava was singular indeed, the edge looked like the sea and in fact the appearance of the whole bottom or field of lava I cannot compare to anything better than a frozen sea, black as coal; my language I find incapable of describing the appearance of what we saw, and how awfully grand must the sight have been when this whole mass of lava was in motion, and how deficient language is to convey to the mind of man any<thing> like the effect that the sight would produce, this I felt particularly when I came to the mouth of the present crater and realized the inadequacy of language to convey to the slightest idea of this stupendous work of nature. Some portions of the field resembled the sea in a state of rest, other portions as it would appear in a violent storm; some places the waves had combed over one over another, as in the ocean and <in> its this situation they had cooled; care had to be taken in treading on these places, as it was thin and a man would break through <to the more solid portion of lava.> In cooling it had cracked and it was full of seams, from which the steam and <heat> issued and which was very singular looking this morning when we arose, steam being seen to issue from all parts of the “pit”; it has this appearance only after a rain; some of the cracks were as wide as a man could step; <the lava was of considerable thickness as we could see by looking in the cracks.> The face of the lava was covered with blisters varying from ¼ to ½ an inch in thickness; the upper surface of the lava is very light and porous and crunches under the step like frozen snow; I collected several specimens of this, with <the> intention of taking it home. There were several ridges of rock thrown up and as we approached the vicinity of the fire we came to a hill that resembled a limekiln and which emitted a thick large body of smoke and steam; it was is composed of a variety of earths and rock, and seemed to be the chimney stack of the crater. I climbed up and looked down one hole from which a sulpherous smoke arose and <the sides> of which were composed, apparently, of brimstone, but I could not see the bottom. I threw a stone down, but I could not hear it strike the bottom. I then scrambled up to the large one and peeped over into <it,> rather a dangerous experiment owning to the precarious nature of the footing, but the smoke was so very thick that I could see nothing. This, the guide informed me, was all included, a17 few years ago, in the “pit” or crater that was constantly active; of late years it has decreased to the present size, and only occasionally breaks forth in any other place. Leaving this, the guide led us over places that looked dangerous and very risky, and I felt that <we> were indeed treading on a volcanoe and we had to be careful where we stepped. A feeling of awe crept over me very naturally, and I felt how very insignificant man is, and how little he knows of the works and operations of his Maker. When we came to the edge of the pit, I was right at the heels of the guide, a sight met my eyes which I think I shall never forget, and which surpassed in sublimity and grandeur anything I had ever witnessed or imagined; language is too faint to convey any of my feelings; I could not repress my exclamations of delight and admiration, it so far exceeded anything that I had ever read or imagined. and I felt amply repaid for all my toil since I left Maui until the present time, in beholding this awfully grand and stupendous work of the Creator.

The pit we judged to be about fifty or sixty feet deep, with perpendicular sides, nearly round, and about, as near as we could judge, one hundred yards across. The the strongest heat seemed to be round the edges, and <in> one side there were two large holes, very close together, which looked more like the mouths of <two> very large furnaces than anything else I ever saw. Here the melted lava or matter was in constant motion, a perfect mass of liquid fire, surging and heaving like the waves of the sea, with a noise which the paddles of a steam vessel sailing in the sea slightly resembled; it was truly a magnificent sight. The surface of the matter while quiescent, was black, with beautiful red veins here and there through it; it had a movement, sometimes slow flowing quickly other times slowly, from the N.E. to the S.W., to the places where it was raging so violently. It was surprising to see with what ease it would melt this stony mass and convert it again into a fluid, throwing it out sometimes with great force. Occasionally it <would> roll up in other parts of this vast caldron, red and fiery with a slow, heavy movement, twisting into <and> a curling in all manner of fantastic shapes, and again relapsing into its former position. Where it was black, a stone would indent it, but not sink out of sight. It was <with> the greatest <difficulty> that we could breathe while going from the lime kiln <looking hill> to the pit, on account of the strong sulpherous smoke which the former emitted and which the b wind carried in the direction of the pit <or caldron.> A party of natives had been here, so <we> were told, a few days before, throwing the bones of a relative into the volcanoe, to with hogs, fowls &c.,—sacrifices to propitiate Madam “Pele.” This used to be, and is quite common at the present time among the worshippers of this goddess; their idea is, that if she (Pele) is pleased with the sacrifice she will consume the bones, and the spirit of the deceased will be permitted to return as a familiar spirit and be with one of the family; if the sacrifice is not acceptable the bones are thrown out on top. It seemed to me that I would never be tired looking at it, but, as we intended to travel to our guide’s place of residence, a distance of some 18 miles or over, we thought we had better be stirring.

In returning the guide led us back another way over a lower portion of the pit or sea of lava; it seemed to be very little above the level of the burning matter in the crater caldron; here he pointed out to us several places where there had been recent eruptions leaving large craters or pits, the bottoms of which presented a similar appearance to that portion of the field over which we were walking, having cooled and preserved its wave like appearance; from these places streams of lava had been sent forth to a great distance. In looking at these fires and <reflecting on> the power of God shown forth in this volcanoe, my mind reverted to the time when “the elements should melt with fervent heat”18 and all things be purified through this element and in looking at it converting solid rocks into a fluid it seemed to require but a little exercise of the power of the Creator to have the fire that seems at present to exist in the bowels of the earth accomplish this and sanctify it to make it a fit residence for the redeemed.—On our return we were overtaken by a shower and got quite wet before we arrived at the house built at the edge of the crater on the surface of the ground where we had slept last night; we arrived there about ten o’clock. After eating breakfast we started to descend; before going down into the crater, Bro. Kaloa pulled off his shoe and gave it me in place of one of mine which was spoiled; I blest him for his kindness. In walking down, my heel got hurt by the strange shoe. It rained considerably while we were going down and we got wet, especially our feet. We arrived at the house about 6 o’clock p.m.; wet and <tired>.

There is one thing that I forgot to mention in its place, that is; the appearance of the crater the evening of our arrival. It was a beautiful sight to stand at the door of our house and watch the splendid forms that the clouds assumed which thro’ the reflection of the fire of the volcanoe on them, it required but little stretch of imagination to people the crater with living beings, and it beholding it I could account very easily for an imaginative and superstitious people like the Hawaiians believing that these fantastic forms of clouds were the spirits of the departed; they were truly lifelike.19

13 May 1854 • Saturday

Raining very heavily all day. Engaged writing, in journal &c.20

14 May 1854 • Sunday

Still continued raining. Wrote a letter to Chas. [Charles], Mary Alice [Lambert], Orin and Anne [Woodbury], Angus, David, Leonora [Cannon], &c. Just as we were commencing meeting a brother came down for me to go up and confirm several that were baptized this morning by Elder Kaelepulu. Bro. Napela let me have the horse; it rained quite heavily. I held meeting with them and spoke on the first principles; we then laid hands on those baptized, nine in number, and <Bro. Kaelepulu> afterwards baptized a young woman and we confirmed her by the water’s edge. I then returned and they came along after dinner and we held meeting at the house where we stopped, Bros. Allred, Napela, Hoopiiaina & I spoke and we had a good meeting.21

15 May 1854 • Monday

Fine when we first got up, but afterwards rained again. Our host and guide to the crater, Keawehiku, and another man offered themselves for baptism and were baptized by Bro. Keeler. He was ordained a teacher. I was glad to see him obey the truth, for he had been extremely kind having killed three pigs and several chickens for us and done every thing in his power to make us comfortable. We felt anxious to go on and we called on Bro. Napela to pray for the rain to cease; we had scarcely arose from our knees when it cleared up.22 As my heel was quite sore Bro. Napela very generously let me have his horse to ride. We had a few showers on the road. We arrived at Waiakea, Hilo Bay, about the middle of the afternoon. I commenced a letter to Elizabeth [Hoagland].

16 May 1854 • Tuesday

A very fine morning; we started for Makahanaloa about 10 or 11 miles; as we passed thro’ town we called on the District Attorney for this island, Mr. Baker, to see him in relation to the destruction of one of our meeting houses in Kohala by a mob incited by a French catholic priest. He appeared quite a gentleman, and manifested a desire to assist us in getting justice. He gave us some ideas in regard to the course to be taken and the evidence that he wished us to furnish him to carry on the suit.23 Bro. Karren asked him in what the laws were in relation to emigration. He said that that they were very pointed on this subject, that it was in direct opposition to the laws, and the penalties were heavy; that Judge Lee must have been mistaken in saying that there was no law to prevent the emigration of the natives. I scratched a few lines in pencil to Bros. Lewis & Johnson, Honolulu, to send by the vessel which leaves the bay this <evening> informing them of what we had learned and citing them to the law, where they would find it &c., and suggesting <to> them the propriety, if this should prove to be the case, of stopping <our> teaching the natives to prepare to leave.24 The Wailuku river which runs into the bay was very high indeed, and I had to leave a horse that Bro. Napela had hired for me. They charged a bit for every passenger, but by telling them our business and that we travelled without purse or scrip they carried us over in the canoe. His name was Kahelewala. This is a fine rich country but quite broken, a a great many ravines and large streams; we were ferried over another large stream, Honolii [Honoli‘i], by a woman named Kaehu; Bro. Kaloa carried me over a good many streams. We reached Makahanaloa about 4 o’clock p.m.25 We held meeting, I spoke and had an excellent flow of the spirit and was followed by Bro. Keeler, who was likewise blessed.

17 May 1854 • Wednesday

Held early morning meeting. Bro. Kailihune spoke and was blessed in teaching. At ten o’clock conference convened that the necessity of doing what we could for the press for the printing the Book of Mormon &c., might be laid before them.26 I spoke to some length on the Book of Mormon showing from the reason and the scriptures the necessity of such a work coming forth, and the great benefit it would be to them as a people, that it was indeed their book, and full of covenants and promises for them. I was blessed with a good flow of the spirit and was enabled to teach with plainness and simplicity. Bro. Redick and Hoopiiaina followed. The native elders were then appointed, those who had come from Maui, Bros. Kaelepulu and Nahakuelua, Hilo; Bros. Hoopiiaina and Kaaiunahi, Hamakua; and Bros. Kapono and Peleleu, Kohala. I was then called upon to give them some instruction, which I did, and told the saints that they must uphold <them> by their faith and prayers and also listen to their counsel. We confirmed eight who had been baptized to day, and administered the Lord’s supper. I was taken with chills and fever in meeting very violently and had hands laid on me and felt somewhat relieved. I counselled the saints not to be too anxious about gathering, but to await the providences of the Lord and be prepared for everything that may come along and to seek to provide themselves with every thing necessary. I enjoyed this meeting excellently, although I felt very unwell. We blessed Bro. Kaelepulu, I was mouth, and bestowed an excellent blessing on him. They again laid hands on me and we started for Honomu about 5 or 6 miles. We bade the saints good bye with feelings of affection for they had treated us with great kindness; Bro. Kaloa was the name of the man of the house; he was a Priest. Bro. Keeler spoke several times and by the spirit. Bro. Kaloa the brother who had accompanied us to the crater gave a beef, a cow, for the press worth 15 dollars; and Bro. Solomona 50 cents. I was very unwell this afternoon, had a very violent fever with great pain in my head, eyes and back, and when I went to bed I was worse like a live col coal of fire. I had hands laid on me several times and was anointed and experienced relief from it; this is the most severe attack I ever have had on the islands and was attended with similar feelings to those I had when I took the fever in the summer of ’52. We held meeting this afternoon; Bros. Keeler & Allred spoke.

18 May 1854 • Thursday

I arose this morning feeling some better than I did last evening but still very weak and feverish. We held early <morning> meeting. Bro. Kapono spoke and had the spirit. I followed in a few remarks and was followed by Bro. Redick. The brethren administered to me and anointed <me,> and I commenced to mend and gained strength all day. We concluded not to leave to day on account of my sickness; we sent on all the natives with the exception of three. We held meeting this afternoon, Bro. Hoopiiaina spoke, and I followed, and was blessed much with the spirit. Thanks to the Lord for bestowing the Holy Priesthood on man, for through its <influence> this great fever had been checked and my health is improving.

19 May 1854 • Friday

I felt stronger this morning; I perspired very much thro’ the night. We held meeting, Bro. Redick spoke, and I made a few remarks. We started for Maulua—the country is rough and uneven, abundance of water—the greatest country for streams I ever saw. I got wet several times in crossing streams. The Lord blessed and strengthened me much.27 We reached Puuohai and stopped there for the night. We held meeting and I spoke on the object of my mission to Hawaii and calling on them to lay to with their mights and assist in bearing off this labor. I was blessed very much in speaking, Bros. Redick, <Keeler> and Kailihune followed and were blessed. Two men were baptized and confirmed.

20 May 1854 • Saturday

Held meeting again this morning I spoke to them on the nature of the duties incumbent on all the children of the kingdom &c. &c., endeavoring to dispel the delusive idea that many of them have imbibed, that they have nothing [to] do. One of the brethren loaned me a horse to ride to Bro. Van Houten’s place. We reached there for dinner and found Bro. Lawson there; they were both in good health and spirits. We stopped here; had a long conversation with a Mr. Fawell on our principles

21 May 1854 • Sunday

Held public meeting, I spoke, Bro. Napela followed. In afternoon, Bros. Redick, Keeler, Van Houten, Napela and I spoke; we had a splendid meeting and a good spirit was manifested by all the saints. Bro. Van Houten subscribed $20 towards the return of the elders and the saints here, although but few, gave $5. I felt to praise the Lord for his goodness and to pray Him to bless them all for their liberality.28

22 May 1854 • Monday

Variously engaged. Wrote to Bro. Hammond.

23 May 1854 • Tuesday

″ ″ Raining &c. and could not leave; we were very kindly entertained by Bro. Van Houten who did not want us to leave; he gave me a pair of new shoes.

24 May 1854 • Wednesday

Although showery we concluded it best to start. I baptized a deaf <man> who had lost his speech, I conversed with signs and writing, while we were travelling on the road. The streams were all very high, while we were crossing one Bro. Karren threw his shoes over with the intention of lightening himself and one of them struck striking the bank rolled back into the stream and floated off; the stream was very rapid and the water boiled so violently in going over the rocks that the shoe was soon engulfed and lost to sight. Bro. Redick N. Allred in crossing on the rocks, slipped back into the stream up to his waist from the last rock; the water ran so swiftly that if he had not fortunately struck fair on his feet in a good position to stand, he must inevitably have been carried off, some little distance at least. He could not get back on to <the> rock from which he slipped, he made such imploring gestures to Bro. Keeler to come to his rescue and he looked so ludicrous that I could not help laughing. I stripped, and then Bro. Redick and I went in to hunt for Bro. K’s [Karren’s] shoe, but without success. He walked with one <foot> bare to where we stopped. While on the road we met two men who wanted to know something about this church and one of them invited us to stay with him, which we did. It rained considerably to day.29

25 May 1854 • Thursday

I had some conversation with the people about our principles. The man of the house, Kahiamoe, gave Bro Karren a pr. [pair] of shoes for which I felt to bless him.30 We had a fine day to travel. At Honokaa we ate dinner and we baptized six. We arrived at Waipio and found all well. I felt much tired. Bro. J. H. Napela gave $27 toward the return <of the elders.>

26 May 1854 • Friday

To-day was feast day; we held meeting. I spoke followed by Bros. Napela and Kapono; eating then commenced and all enjoyed themselves much; <poi made of taro & of potatoes also, beef, pork, chickens, dog & fish were the eatables.> We felt much fatigued to day, not having recovered wholly from the effects of our long tramp, wading streams, climbing and descending hills (palis,) and travelling in the rain. This has been about as hard a trip as I have taken on the islands, the distance to the crater being between ninety and a hundred miles over very bad roads; it has been, in many respects, a very agreeable trip, the spirit of the Lord has been enjoyed and we have had very pleasant meetings with the <saints.>

After we got through eating[,] a boy brought letters and papers from Waimea, letters that had been sent from Honolulu. I received one from Bros. [William] McBride, San Francisco, <dated March 8th,> giving information in relation to the press &c.; they had sent to Boston for it and it was to be consigned to R. Coady, & Co; $1000 had to be paid on delivery, it being the balance due. He says that Bro. [Charles] Rich is recovering; Bro. [Willard] Richards is in a precarious situation; Bro. Hiram Clark, who accompanied us to these islands and was our President, has cut his throat with his razor, he was seen by his son & was also seen by him to fall. I was much shocked at getting this intelligence, an awful termination to an elder’s career! He had spent much time and means in rolling forth the kingdom, but, in consequence of his conduct on these islands and on the Society Islands, so says report, he had forfeited the spirit of the Lord and Satan has led him captive at his will. Deliver me O Lord from the sinner’s end, and I may be permitted and assisted by thee to endure unto the end in faithfulness and in continual obedience to all thy requirements. Amen.

Bro. McB. has not been able to do much yet but he is intending to leave San Francisco as soon as the weather is favorable. Bro. Johnson wrote me a letter dated April 28th in which he represented affairs as being favorable in Honolulu; his health had not been very good; he says, that Bro. Amasa [Lyman] has written, saying, that if we had no special counsel about setting up the press <here> he will have some counsel for us, which will be, I suppose, to have it set up in San Bernardino. There was a letter and three papers, <(Zion’s Watchman)> came from Kawaihae, as we supposed, and written by Bro. Wm. [William] Hyde, who was on his way to San Pedro with a company of saints, 63 in number, from Australia;31 he had written in haste, and said he would have liked to have seen some of us but they were not going to stay long. We held meeting this afternoon and spoke on the Book of Mormon and was much blessed; Bro. Napela followed; we made a strong appeal to the people to do all they could in assisting to forward on this thing. Baptized a man to day. I officiated, by his request.

27 May 1854 • Saturday

I received a note from a young man, a high school scholar, Daniel K. Molemona, confessing his belief and his conviction of its truth from the discourse of yesterday, and requesting baptism at my hands. Held meeting this afternoon, I was called on to speak and spoke on the sacrament and on the necessity of being prepared to partake of it in purity. Bro. R. N. Allred followed on the same subject. After meeting, went up to D. K. Molemona <house> with Bros. Snider and Allred, and ate supper and then baptized him, his wife & her sister.

28 May 1854 • Sunday

Attended morning meeting, some of the native brethren spoke. At ½ past 10 A.M. public meeting convened and I was called on to speak. I read the 15th chap. of 1st Samuel and also proved from the scriptures the necessity of new revelation and of a prophet, and whenever a prophet is called of the Lord his word has to be obeyed, as in the case of Samuel and Saul. Although Samuel was but a man, yet his word had to be obeyed, and Saul was deprived of his kingdom for disobedience; it was so with the antedaluvian world, and with all people in all ages who disobeyed the voice of God thro’ his servants. I reasoned at some length on these principles and was much blessed, saying, that God had again restored his authority and priesthood to the earth; had again called and chosen a prophet and we have this lesson to learn, no matter how distasteful it may be—to be obedient to the voice of the servants of God and all those who are in authority over us, or woe be unto us; “obedience,” I said, “is better than sacrifice and hearkening than the fat of rams.”32 I reasoned on these things, endeavoring to impress them on their minds and instil into them the necessity of faith and obedience, for upwards of an hour; they paid good attention, and I was blessed much with the spirit. I spoke on this subject that they might begin to realize the necessity of responding to every call that might be made, such as the Book of Mormon, press &c. and the return of the elders. Bros. Keeler & Napela followed; Bro. N. called on them to help freely for these objects. I afterwards followed in a few explanatory remarks. In afternoon, Bros. Keeler, Allred, Napela, Kailihune and I spoke on various subjects and attended to the sacrament. I baptized a man this evening, according to his request, and administered to several sick people and blessed a good many children.33

29 May 1854 • Monday

Attended early morning meeting and was much blessed in speaking; Bro. Redick followed. We held meeting this afternoon.34 Bro. Keeler and I spoke and we had a very good meeting. In evening we held meeting by lamplight I was called on to speak and was enabled to speak with power and with the spirit on the nature of the different offices and the organization of the church &c. and the glory and exaltation with all the blessings that they would receive, if faithful. The saints paid excellent attention. Bros. Keeler and Allred followed. I wrote a letter to Bro. Johnson, Oahu.

30 May 1854 • Tuesday

Attended early morning meeting, Bro. Redick spoke, Bro. Napela followed and after[ward] two young women confessed, in consequence of having been caught by two of the elders, that they had made an assignation to sleep with two young men, and they were desirous of forsaking this sin.35 After they were forgiven by the church I arose and spoke on the nature of this sin and of its heinousness in the sight of the Lord, told them what the law of the Lord was in relation to this thing, and the mode of punishment among the saints in Zion; that they must begin to forsake their sins or they would certainly lose their lives, if they should gather among the people of God; telling them also that they must begin to teach their children these things lest they should lose their lives.36 We ordained Daniel Kuau Molemona, a teacher. After breakfast, Bros. Keeler, Lawson, Snider and I started for Kohala, by way of Waimea, leaving Bros. Karren, Allred & Linn to go around by canoe with Bro. Napela and the rest of the native brethren. In [It] rained on the road; and in the woods near Waimea we found great quantities of akala, the raspberry, which grows extraordinary large, about as large as a small hen egg, and very plentiful indeed.37 I saved several for seed. We put up at Mr. Beadle’s and found Bro. Side <& wife> there. The evening was spent agreeably conversing on principle.

31 May 1854 • Wednesday

Bro. Keeler and I arose early and went to meeting, about two miles; we held meeting in the house of Pi, a high school graduate, who was believing; we baptized three—two men and a woman; Bro. Keeler offici<a>ted. We returned to Mr. Beadle’s and spent the day. He had not got the saddle finished for me, but the tree was made to-day; He promised to get it finished for the elders to take down with them to Honolulu; he also said that if he had time he would make me a pair of Spanish spurs. I left <gave> my watch to him. Bro. Side promised to send a barrel of beef for the consumption of the elders while at conference. We had considerable conversation on the principles of our doctrine; Mr. Beadle is believing. I felt to thank the Lord for having blessed me in obtaining these necessary things.

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May 1854, The Journal of George Q. Cannon, accessed July 19, 2024