A Sketch of Recent Events, being a Short Account of the events which culminated on June 30, 1887, together with a full report of the Great Reform Meeting, and the Two Constitutions in parallel columns. Honolulu: A. M. Hewett, 1887
8vo, printed wrappers; small tears in backstrip.
First edition of an important narrative of events leading to the adoption of the “bayonet constitution” of 1887
The anonymous author, identified by a presentation inscription in a copy at the Hawai’i State Library, traces the dissatisfaction with the Kalakau government from 1880. The ostensible cause of the revolt was the case of Tong Aki, a rice planter from whom the King had accepted a $71,000 bribe to deliver him a monopoly license to sell opium. The license went to another and the King refused to return the money. Shortly after Aki complained publicly, he mysteriously died. The foreign planters were “outraged” and this gave Lorrin Thurston, Sanford Dole and their associates an excuse to take action.
As a committee of 13, they presented Kalakaua with a list of demands including the dismissal of his government and the adoption of a new constitution. The proceedings of the “Great Reform Meeting” are given, including quoted or summarized speeches by Sanford Dole, Paul Isenberg, William Henry Rice, Lorrin Thurston and others. The second part of the text prints the 1864 and 1887 constitutions in parallel columns to facilitate comparison.
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