Nhsc-v1-26

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nhsc-v1-26

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  • President Cleveland, inaugurated just after the landing of United States forces, dispatched Representative Blount to investigate the events. His report blamed the American Minister, John L. Stevens, for the revolution. The United States Senate then commissioned the Morgan report, which reached an almost opposite conclusion. The Commission believes the truth lies between these two reports.
  • In 1897, Hawaii's new government and the United States entered into an agreement that Hawaii would be annexed to the United States. The annexation question was submitted for consideration by the Hawaii legislature. In the United States, it was passed by Joint Resolution of both houses of Congress, rather than as a Treaty requiring a two-thirds majority of the Senate. President McKinley's concern to secure a foothold in the Pacific for the United States in the face of the Spanish-American War prompted use of a Joint Resolution. (Texas is the only other territory that was annexed to the United States by Joint Resolution.) The relations between the United States and Hawaii up to the time of annexation were relations between two separate, sovereign nations, not between a sovereign and those subject to its sovereignty.
  • Determining if any native Hawaiians signed annexation documents is difficult without extensive genealogical research. An estimate is that six native Hawaiians were in the Hawaiian legislature when it adopted the 1894 Constitution calling for annexation.
  • In 1959, Hawaii became a State of the United States. The history of its admission to statehood, like that of other states, is unique.
  • The Commission examined both common law and statutes to determine whether there currently exists any legal basis for compensation for loss of land. The Commission also reviewed articles and reports making the legal argument for compensation. Generally, the most likely possible theories for the award of compensation to native groups for loss of land were aboriginal title or recognized title doctrines:
-The law has developed specific tests for establishing aboriginal title: the group must be a single land-owning entity; there must be actual and exclusive use and occupancy of the lands; the use and occupancy must be of a defined area; the land must have been used and occupied for a long time before aboriginal title was extinguished. Additionally, title must have been extinguished by the government of the United States, not by another body, such as the government of Hawaii before the United States annexed Hawaii. Finally, some law must give the native group, here the native Hawaiians, a right to compensation for loss of aboriginal title. The Commission finds that the facts do not meet the
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