THE KAHU OF ROYAL IWI

Tuesday, March 26th, 2013 by

Being Hawaiian to me means being proud of who we are and where we come from. The rich history and Mana’o passed down from our elders is what keeps our traditions and culture vividly alive. We as Hawaiians had control of our land, ideas, and traditions over two centuries ago. I can’t help but imagine what life was like back then. The transition from the old independent chiefdoms, to a Monarch in favor of an elected legislature. The protocols of the reigning dynasty, attending Royal galas, to the way us Hawaiians lived in the country still intrigue me. Meet Uncle Bill (William John Kaihe’ekai Mai’oho), the 6th generation of Kahu and a direct descendant of the two brothers, Ho’opili and Ho’olulu on the state’s Seal. Uncle Bill, a man who has a very unique position as Kahu (honored attendant, guardian) of Mauna’ala is rich with knowledge. His grandfather’s side of the family were chosen by King Kamehameha The Great to make sure no one would find his iwi (bones) once he passed away. It is believed that one’s Mana (power) is found in their bones. Sitting with Uncle Bill is like entering a portal that travels back in time through the centuries. The knowledge he has accumulated over the years is boundless, and the fact that he’s willing to share his wealth of wisdom is something to admire. Besides taking a tour of the grounds, Uncle Bill was kind enough to sit down and answer a few questions, speaking on topics ranging from the different Royal Monarch families that are buried there to the unique laws applied on the property.

1. Hello Uncle Bill, could you please start by letting everyone know how many generations your family has been caring for the property here in Nu’uanu. 
 
For the last three generations: my Grandfather, my Mother and myself.

2. Exactly who is buried here?
 
The Kamehameha dynasty which is the first to have been placed at Mauna Ala. That is from Kamehameha second to the fifth, and there are a total of 24 Kamehameha’s buried here. We also have the Kalakaua dynasty where there are members of King Kalakaua’s family and Queen Kapiolani’s family, a total of 20 members of the Kalakaua family. Then we have the Wyllie crypt named after a government official during the Kamehameha dynasty and it also contains 8 members of Queen Emma’s family. Lastly, we have the grave site of John Young. John Young and Isaac Davis were the two foreign sailors that helped Kamehameha create the Kingdom of Hawaii.

3. Who was initially responsible for setting aside these grounds for the Royal families?
 
King Kamehameha IV and Queen Emma.

4. I heard somewhere that local laws do not apply to the property, is this true?
 
That’s not true, but the state and federal land laws do not apply to Mauna Ala.

5. Living this close to so much mana, you must be constantly visited by the spirits from the past. Would you care to share any of these experiences?
 
Those are gifts from my ancestors so I do not share these experiences with anyone.

6. Has any individual or group ever tried to take bones or artifacts from the property?
 
There really hasn’t been any desecration of the burial sites or crypt sites of Mauna Ala; although the fence was once vandalized and one of the small crowns pried from it.

7. Is there anything visitors should absolutely not do when they visit the grounds?
 
You can take pictures of the chapel and the Kalakaua crypt but no video or camcorders are allowed to film in either of these places.

8. Please describe what it means to you to be a native Hawaiian?
 
In today’s modern world I am privileged to practice this sacred aspect of our culture.

KAMEHAMEHA: PAST FOR FUTURE PACK

Thursday, November 1st, 2012 by

Releasing today, Nov. 1st. Please note, the online store will have this up for sale a little after 11. Please bare with us. Mahalo!

Aloha kakou!

One thing that separates Hawaiʻi versus the rest of the US is our way of thinking. The majority of the US tends to never reflect on the past; instead focusing solely on the future. However, we usually tend to use the past to help us in the future, by using the knowledge our ancestors passed down, as well as the mistakes they made. In ancient Hawaiʻi, our way of life sustained a healthy populace of kanaka (Hawaiians), without the advent of modern technology. They survived, lived off the land, and was, for the most part, disease (and dis-ease) free (pre-Western contact of course). In this day and age, even with the advancement in technology, science, engineering and medicine, we deal with hard-hitting matters such as poverty, homelessness, ever increasing drug usage, horrible socioeconomic matters and the almighty “rail issue” that’s always in the headlines these days. Add to the fact that Hawaiʻ’s population has increased dramatically, with a population that tops at 1.3 million. Which is why we’d like to say Imua Kamehameha! Vote Kamehameha for King, 2012!

Although just a “mock campaign”, this pack is a way of gaining the attention of and educating the population that we don’t always need to solely focus on the future to improve ourselves and our ʻaina. We can look to the past for guidance. The pack includes two tank tops (gray and navy blue colorways) that read Vote: Kamehameha 2012 Past For Future with white, navy blue and red. We also have included a black tee with the same campaign in the same colors, a private label snapback with black upper and all white brim, and a pack of bumper stickers. Lastly, we have a tee dubbed The Great Rail Robbery which alludes to the current rail issue that’s a hard hitting topic in local politics, and also a slight nod to the classic Black Uhuru song of the same name. See the video below.

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KAMEHAMEHA DAY: ON THE BACK OF A KING

Monday, June 11th, 2012 by

On the back of a King.

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HILO ON MY CHEST (PAIʻEA & FITTED)

Wednesday, September 7th, 2011 by

Hilo On My Chest
By Daniel Ikaika Ito

Releasing this Saturday, Sept. 10th (in-stores and online)

Hilo is on the rise, homey. Paie’a Projects and Fitted are teaming up, once again, with a basketball jersey and New Era fitted cap. This Hilo pack recognizes the modern and historical influences of the capital of Hawai‘i County.

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POWER TO THE PEOPLE (PART OF THE KAMEHAMEHA SURF TEAM PACK)

Tuesday, June 14th, 2011 by

Available now. Please check later on during the day for online availability

Aloha kakou!

This t-shirt was supposed to be apart of the Kamehameha Surf Team pack we dropped this past Friday, however due to issues we have no control over, it arrived just a bit late. An ode to the Great King Kamehameha with the well known idiom “Power To the People used in a political context to defend against oppression, an anti-establishment slogan used by the Black Panther Party. In this case, it’s a call to stand up for the Original People of these islands and to continue to stand tall in the path of the World oppressors, aka the bankers, government and politicians. Burn down Babylon!

KAMEHAMEHA DAY

Friday, June 11th, 2010 by

Enjoy it! Make sure to head down to the shop to take advantage of the sale and free food.

NOW AVAILABLE ONLINE: CHAMBRAY KAMEHAMEHA

Saturday, May 22nd, 2010 by

KAMEHAMEHA TEAL

Friday, August 14th, 2009 by

Releasing tomorrow, August 15th.

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Another custom Kamehameha releasing tomorrow, perfect summer time get up. This one is extra crispy too! All teal with a white Kam. These are limited as usual, so please respond accordingly.

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BUILDING BLOCKS x CUSTOM KAMEHAMEHA

Tuesday, June 9th, 2009 by

Releasing Thursday, June 11th.

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June 11th marks a special occasion filled with a sense of pride and sincerity, dedicated to the Napoleon of the Pacific, our late-great King Kamehameha whom we all know conquered and unified our islands. King Kamehameha Day was established by Kamehameha’s great grandson, King Kamehameha V in 1871, whereas the first observance of this state holiday was celebrated the following year. Governor William F. Quinn also announced Kamehameha as a state holiday when Hawai’i attained statehood in 1959. Kamehameha laid down the building blocks for basically everything we have and are surrounded by today, setting the foundation for the future of our ʻāina and cementing the rest in history.

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LUNA

Monday, April 6th, 2009 by

kam-mowab-blog1

Aloha.

It’s pretty apparent at this point of King Kamehameha’s unmistakable impact & influence on Hawaii, so no sense beating a dead horse. And if you haven’t the faintest idea of who this man of great history is, and you’ve lived on these islands for more than 10 years, you should head to the Pali lookout & contemplate & reevaluate your whole life. Do yourself a favor & dig deep into our archives to brush up on your historical facts & knowledge.

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