Saturday, October 23, 2010

USA - Hawaii - Statue of King Kamehameha The Great

MEMORIES of Hawaii
The statue of King Kamehameha the Great stands overlooking Hilo Bay.

Sent by Wehi, a poscrosser from USA.

This is from Wikipedia : The Kamehameha Statue stands prominently in front of Aliʻiolani Hale in Honolulu, Hawaiʻi. The statue had its origins in 1878 when Walter M. Gibson, a member of the Hawaiian government at the time, wanted to commemorate the 100 year discovery of Hawaiʻi by Captain Cook. The legislature appropriated $10,000 for the project and made Gibson the director of the project, which originally included native Hawaiians but they soon were off the project and Gibson ran the project by himself.[citation needed] Gibson contacted Thomas R. Gould a Boston sculptor living abroad in Florence, Italy to create the statue.

During this time David Kalākaua had become king and was completing Iolani Palace which was his tribute to King Kamehameha I and to be the destination of the statue. The statue was too late for the 100 year anniversary but in 1883 the statue was placed aboard a ship and headed for Hawaiʻi. In the proximity of Falkland Islands the ship wrecked and with it the statue, however the Hawaiians had insured the statue for $12,000 and Gould rushed to complete a second.

The first casting of the Kamehameha statue, now at Kapaʻau, North Kohala.Before the second statue could be sent the original had been recovered by some Falkland Islanders. They sold it to the Captain of the wrecked ship for $500 and the Captain then sold it to Gibson for $875. Now Hawai'i had two statues. The original stands at the legendary king's birthplace of Kapaʻau in Kohala, on the island of Hawaiʻi. The re-ordered one stands in front of Aliʻiolani Hale.

A third statue was commissioned when Hawaiʻi attained statehood and was unveiled in 1969. It stood in the United States Capitol alongside the Father Damien Statue and was the heaviest statue in Statuary Hall, weighing 15,000 pounds. In 2008, shortly after Hawaii-born Barack Obama was nominated as the Democratic Party’s candidate for the presidency, the statue was moved from a dark, back row of Statuary Hall to a prominent position in Emancipation Hall in the Capitol's new visitor center.

Another Kamahameha statue resides on the Big Island. It is standing near downtown Hilo at the north end of the Wailoa State Recreation area, where it enjoys a king's view of Hilo Bay. The 14 ft statue was sculpted by R. Sandrin at the Fracaro Foundry in Vicenza, Italy in 1963 but was not erected on this site and dedicated until June 1997. The statue was originally commissioned for $125,000 by the Princeville Corporation for their resort in Kauai. However, the people of Kauai did not want the statue erected there as Kauai was never conquered by King Kamehameha I. Hilo, however, was one of the political center for King Kamehameha I. So the Princeville Corporation donated to the statue to the Big Island of Hawaii.

The Grand Wailea Resort Hotel & Spa on Maui is the home of the fifth Kamehameha statue. Renowned Hawaiian artist, author and historian Herb Kawainui Kane created the imposing nine-and-a-half-foot work of art, which presides over the entrance of the hotel, facing the porte cochere. It is purported to be the most lifelike representation of the great warrior king.

The statue can be briefly seen in the opening credits of the TV police drama Hawaii Five-O. The statue is also seen multiple times in a 3-part series of Sanford and Son when the duo go on a vacation to Hawaii. The statue is seen on a pedestal outside the Hawaii Police Department Headquarters.

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