Nawaraj Bikram Kunwar
HIST 2002, The Global Experience since 1500
Course Paper on Mission Houses Museum
It has been almost four months I left my country for abroad higher studies. I came long away from Nepal to Hawaii for my study and I have heard that there are numbers of historical places to visit but never got chances to visit any historical place of Hawaii. My professor Dr.Gilbert gave me that opportunity to visit idyllic and quiet property in the middle of downtown Mission Houses Museum on Tuesday April 3, 2012. I am very thankful to him for giving such a great and memorable opportunity. This piece of history is in downtown Honolulu, just few minutes’ walk from Hawaii Pacific University, Downtown. I reached there at around 2:30 and my classmates were already there. Professor Gilbert told us that we will be tour by Mr. Mike but at that time he was not there so we were introduced by mission houses museum volunteer Ms. Lisa and she was originally from Europe. The Mission Houses Museum offers visitors to its place of wonderment and history. Being in this place I felt so strange, it's pretty neat and clean. I was pleasantly surprised that this place was very well kept up. Being as a Hawaii Pacific University student we got special discount and paid just $6 and tour was of 45 minutes. For other normal visitors general admission is $10 and tours are conducted every hour, and last tour begins promptly at 3pm. The museum is open Tuesday through Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. We can walk around the grounds and it's free. There's only street parking but I took the public buses run nearby. This place is really educational and one of the places everybody would probably say wow to. My tour guide was very knowledgeable and was able to tell us a lot about Hawaiian history. What the museum has been able to preserve and share is amazing. They have the oldest house of all of the Hawaiian Islands on the property which was actually shipped from Boston. I am going to describe short brief about the museum houses that I acknowledge from visiting Mission Houses Museum. I think, before describing about mission houses museum and my experience about tour I would like to remember Captain Cook who discovered the Hawaii in 1778 and King Kamehameha I (Hawaiian pronunciation: [kəmehəˈmɛhə]; ca. 1758 – May 8, 1819), also known as Kamehameha the Great who conquered the Hawaiian Islands and formally established the Kingdom of Hawaii in 1810. By developing alliances with the major Pacific colonial powers, Kamehameha preserved Hawaiʻi's independence under his rule. According to Mission Houses Museum website and tour guide it was established in 1923 but according to Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia, Mission Houses Museum was established in 1920. Whatever the establishment date is but it is true that it was established by Hawaiian Mission Children’s Society, a non-profit educational institution and genealogical society. The Museum interprets the "missionary period" of Hawaiian history, 1820-1863, which is fundamental to an understanding of contemporary Hawai‘i. Captain Cook rediscovered Hawaii in 1778 and missionaries came then after 50 years. We can still see the picture of Captain Cook and King Kamehameha hanging on the mission houses museum. They both are unforgettable and sources of Hawaii history. We did visit three mission houses and that houses used to serve as homes and workplaces for the first Christian missionaries who came here in Hawaii.
The first one is the Oldest Frame House (Ka Hale Lāʻau ‘the wood house’) and the materials to build this house were arrived by ship around Cape Horn from Boston in 1821. They had already been measured and cut, ready to assemble into a frame house suitable for the climate of New England: with small windows to help keep the heat inside and short eaves so as not to risk cracking under a load of snow. It was used as a communal home by many missionary families who shared it...
Cited: 1. http://www.missionhouses.org/
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