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Kamehameha I
Kamehameha II
Kamehameha III
Kamehameha IV
Kamehameha V
William Charles Lunalilo
David Kalakaua
`Iolani Palace

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(Lydia Paki) 1838-1917

Kalakaua's younger sister by two years, Lili`uokalani was adopted by Paki and Konia and raised as a sister to Bernice Pauahi. Educated at the Royal School, she was particularly gifted as a musician and composer. She married John Owens Dominis in 1862 and they lived in Washington Place, his mother's home. In 1863 Kamehameha V appointed Dominis governor of O`ahu where he performed his duties as governor while Lili`uokalani acted as the king's regent during Kalakaua's world tour.

Proclaimed Queen after her brother's death in 1891, Lili`uokalani spent most of her reign wrangling with her cabinet. She unsuccessfully battled to establish a new constitution, one that would restore some of the executive powers stripped by the "Bayonet Constitution" of 1887. A group of American businessmen, frustrated by the Queen's persistence, organized a "Committee of Safety" and staged a coup on January 17, 1893. Pressured by United States Minister Stevens and the presence of American marines, Lili`uokalani acquiesced while at the same time hoping the United States President would right the situation.

"Aloha `Oe," Lili`uokalani's most famous song, was inspired by a horseback trip she took in 1877 to the windward side of O`ahu. After visiting the Boyd ranch in Maunawili, Lili`u witnessed a farewell embrace between Colonel James Boyd and one of the young ranch ladies. A tune came to her on the ride home and she composed the words once she returned to Washington Place.

In 1895, Robert Wilcox led an unsuccessful counter-revolution to restore the monarchy. When arms were found hidden at Washington Place, Lili`uokalani was tried for treason and imprisoned in an upper story room of `Iolani Palace. She formally abdicated on January 24, 1895 to win clemency for the rebels who supported her.

With no children of her own, Lili`uokalani had named her niece Ka`iulani as heir. After the overthrow, both Lili`uokalani and Ka`iulani went to Washington to persuade American leaders to restore the monarchy. Though President Cleveland was sympathetic, his successor McKinley supported the newly-formed Republic. In 1898, Hawai`i became a United States Territory.

Ka`iulani died in 1899 at age 24. Lili`uokalani lived on until 1917.

 Sites for further information

Hawaii's Last Queen (American Experience)

Hawai`i State Government's Information about Queen Liliuokalani (Hawai`i State Government)

"Hawaii's Story by Hawaii's Queen" Online Text (University of Pennsylvania)

A Newspaper Article Remembering the Overthrow of Liliuokalani (Star-Bulletin)

The actual text of the Queen's Protest

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