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Alexander Liholiho ascends the throne
Kamehameha III had adopted his younger nephew Alexander Liholiho and named him his successor. A grandson of Kamehameha I, he had been raised in the king's household. Aged 20 when he came to the throne, Alexander - now Kamehameha IV - married Emma Rooke two years into his reign. In 1858, Emma gave birth to a son and the entire kingdom fawned over the new heir. Concerned over Hawaiians' rapidly declining population, Kamehameha IV and Emma were both involved with health initiatives and various charities. Together they were instrumental in seeking private funding and establishing Queen's Hospital in Honolulu. In 1859, the king shot his friend and secretary Henry Neilson out of misguided jealousy. Neilson eventually died of his wounds. Kamehameha IV's remorse and anguish were compounded when his young son died in 1862. His health further weakened by chronic asthma, Kamehameha IV died in November 1863.
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