Did you know that the United States Congress annexed Hawaii through the "Newlands Resolution" signed by President William McKinley on July 7th, 1898 -- a move that would prove significant in the history of the 130+ tropical islands located in the Pacific Ocean and formed from volcanoes, all about 2,000 miles from the mainland? Annexation resulted after the long struggle between white American businessmen and native Hawaiians, ruled by Queen Lili'uokalani, for control of the land extraordinarily rich in natural resources, flora, and fauna. A major agricultural exporter of sugar, honey, coffee, macadamia nuts, and pineapple, the political battle was marked by an extensive petition by native Hawaiians against annexation, now filed in the permanent records of the United States Senate.
Hawaii would become a territory two years later and one of the last states in our country on August 21st, 1959. Interest continues to grow in Hawaiian language and culture, whose origins trace to Polynesia and are influenced by both the East and West. Beautiful white beaches, lyrical language, and the music of ukuleles grace the "Aloha State", whose meaning reflects deep cultural and spiritual significance -- the presence of breath, breath of life. A popular tourist attraction for honeymooners, backpackers, and sunbathers, as well as living laboratory for naturalists and scientists, Hawaii is the only state outside of North America that is entirely comprised of islands and is in the tropics.
The following articles are drawn from Proquest Historical Newspapers, which informs and inspires classroom teaching and learning.
- Annexation Of Hawaii Urged: Foreign Affairs Committee Postpones a Vote Until Thursday For the Neutralization Of Hawaii. (1898, May 11). New - York Tribune (1866-1899)
- Alabama Annexers: Pettus as Well as Morgan Is For Hawaii. (1898, Jul 02). Los Angeles Times (1886-1922)
- Hawaii Now Safe Under Our Flag: Annexation Wins By A Heavy Vote. (1898, Jul 07). San Francisco Chronicle (1869-Current File)
- Mansfield, J.C. (1929, Jan 05). High Lights Of History: The Story Of the Hawaiian Islands. The Annexationn of Hawaii. The Atlanta Constitution (1881-1945)
- Hawaii Weighs Pros and Cons of Statehood: Hawaii: Will It Be the Forty-Ninth State? (1940, Apr 19). The Christian Science Monitor (1908-Current File)
- Judd, L. M. (1940, Sep 15). Hawaii Wants Statehood: Since 1898, the Islands Have Fought For Equal Status With Continental United States, and the Territory Awaits Excitedly. The Hartford Courant (1923-1995)
- This Day In History: July 7--Hawaii Ours Half Century (1945, Jul 07). Chicago Daily Tribune (1923-1963)
- Peck, J. (1958, Jun 15). You'll Feel Right At Home If You Go to Hawaii. Chicago Daily Tribune (1923-1963)
- Endicott, W. (1977, Sep 27). Native Rights: Hawaii Feels Rising Tide Of Ethnic Pride. Los Angeles Times (1923-1995)
- Bone, R. W. (1985, Feb 10). Hawaii: Islands Of Sand, Surf and Splendor, Born Of an Inferno. Chicago Tribune (1963-1996)
- Bacchilega, Cristina. Legendary Hawai'i and the Politics Of Place: Tradition, Translation, and Tourism. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, c2007. e-book
- Olson, Steve. Evolution of Hawaii: A Supplement To Teaching About Evolution and the Nature of Science.
Washington, D.C.: National Academies Press, c2004. e-book
- Potter, Robert E. A History of Teacher Education In Hawaii. Honolulu: Hawaiian Education Association, c1995. Stacks LB1716.H39 P68 1995
- The 1897 Petition Against the Annexation of Hawaii, National Archives. Includes primary source documents, educator resources, and other interesting information.
- Hawaii, Image by Quinn Radford, Courtesy of Pixabay
- Special News Slide, Courtesy of the Gottesman Libraries
Need to keep current, look to the past, teach a topic? The Everett Cafe features daily postings of news from around the world, and also promotes awareness of historical events from an educational context. Be sure to check additional Cafe News postings on the library blog.