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Overview of time periods in Hawaii's post-contact history

List all short stories from Hawaii's Timeline

Sources for Hawai‘i Timeline


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Life in Hawai‘i Business & Economy Arts & Science World Events


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Dr. G. P. Judd and royal brothers Alexander Liholiho and Lot Kamehameha depart for the United States and Europe on a mission to improve international relations. Read More.

Admiral Tromelin, of the French frigate Poursuivante lands his forces and seizes the fort in Honolulu and the King's yacht Kamehameha.

A Whig newspaper, the Northern Journal of Lowville, New York, publishes a two column editorial advocating the annexation of the Hawaiian Islands and their admission into the Union as the State of Hawaii.

Keliiahonui, a chief on Kaua'i, dies.

Work begins on a Big Island road to connect Kailua, Kona and Hilo. The ambitious project is discontinued after several years.



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H. Hackfeld starts the company that later becomes American Factors Group (Amfac).

Beef first exported from the Islands.

H. Hackfeld Department Store - predecessor of Liberty House - opens in Honolulu.

Chun Afong arrives in Honolulu to work in his uncle's store. He later establishes Afong & Ahchuck.

Islands export 653,820 pounds of sugar and 41,235 gallons of molasses.

$730,000 worth of imports arrive in Hawai'i; exports total $161,000.

Valdemar Knudsen, son of a president of Norway and future sugar planter, arrived in Hawaii.


Epidemics in 1848-1849 kill one-tenth of the Hawaiian population.

The Massachusetts is the first steam powered propeller ship to arrive in Hawai'i.

Nu`uanu Reservoir built. Pipes take water from Keokane Spring into Honolulu.

The Herald arrives, bringing famed nauralist Berthold Seemann to the Islands.


Reinforced concrete used for the first time.

Pacific Railroad Company builds first railroad west of the Mississippi.


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