Nhsc-v1-273

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nhsc-v1-273

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Thurston's in the period 1926- 1930." 62/ The objective of the league,

...as stated in section two of its constitution, was "constitutional, representative Government, in fact as well as in form, in the Hawaiian Islands, by all necessary means." Within the League there developed a radical wing and a conservative wing. The radicals favored abolition of the monarchy and the setting up of a republic; some of them wished to go further and seek annexation to the United States. The conservatives, on the other hand, favored retention of the monarchy, but wanted a change of ministry and a drastic revision of the constitution of the kingdom; for them a republic was a last resort, in case the king refused to agree to the reforms demanded. 63/

With respect to the issue of annexation, "Volney V. Ashford, not a very reliable witness, wrote to Commissioner H. H. Blount on March 8, 1893: 'The plan of the movement of 1887...embraced the establishment of an independent republic, with the view to ultimate annexation to the United States.'" 64/ But S. B. Dole, in a letter of December 23, 1893, to Minister A. S. Willis, said that the revolution of 1887 "was not an annexation movement in any sense, but tended toward an independent republic, but when it had the monarchy in its power, conservative councils prevailed..." 65/

At a later time, W. R. Castle wrote,

There was a very strong element in the league determined to bring about annexation to the United States, but prior to the mass meeting which finally resulted in a revolution...this annexation element after a long and very bitter discussion, was defeated and the Hawaiians, meaning thereby those of Hawaiian birth, parentage and affiliation, procured a promise on the part of the league that its attempts would be confined to a reformed Hawaiian government, under sufficient guaranties to insure responsible and safe government." 66/

More important than these statements, however, is that the "strong support given to the 1887 movement by the British residents of Hawaii is good evidence that the idea of annexation was not a major factor in it." 67/

As noted previously, the opposition to the policies and actions of Kalakaua and his cabinet under Gibson motivated the formation of the Hawaiian League. The abhorrence of and opposition to Gibson and his policies is nowhere more evident than when the Hawaiian League's committee drafted and sent a set of resolutions to Kalakaua. The first resolution called for the dismissal of his present cabinet and the second specifically called for Walter M. Gibson's "dismis[sal] from each and every office held by him under the Government." 68/

The absence of any direct American involvement in the events that led to the Constitution of 1887 is fairly well documented. The management arid control of the Hawaiian League was vested in a "Committee of Thirteen," whose exact make-up "was a fairly well-guarded secret; it is known however, that there were occasional changes in its composition." 69/ It

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