Boarding School and Land Allotment Eras 1879-1933
Plantation owners force King Kalakaua to sign the Bayonet Constitution
All White, American non-Hawaiian merchants and businessman, dubbing themselves the Hawaiian League, form to protect haole (White foreigner) property and economic interests. They succeed in seizing power and forcing, through arms, King Kalakaua to sign a treaty under duress (Trask, 1999). The new constitution is drafted by American lawyers and plantation owners, including the largest sugarcane plantation owner, Sanford Dole. Their goal is not only full control of the Hawaiian Kingdom but also eventual annexation of Hawai’i by the United States. The Constitution allows foreign resident aliens to vote and at same time denies over two-thirds of Native Hawaiians from voting. Voter eligibility is tied to English literacy and proficiency standards and holding property that aligns with taxable property standards, thus excluding the majority of Native Hawaiians from voting. Mostly White wealthy landowning plantation owners retain rights and power under the terms of the Constitution. The Hawaiian League seized control over the Kingdom of Hawai’i, took away Native Hawaiian land rights, and gave the vote to foreign landowners (Trask, 1999; Native Voices, “1887: ‘Bayonet Constitution’ takes Native Hawaiians’ rights”).