"Chapters XVI-XXVIII." by Liliuokalani, Queen of Hawaii (1838-1917)
IN the early part of the year 1883, preparations were made to formally ratify the accession of the new dynasty to the Hawaiian throne by investing both His Majesty Kalakaua, and his queen, Kapiolani, with the crown and other insignia of royalty. To this end all needful articles had been ordered from Europe, excepting such as could be readily obtained in the nearer port of San Francisco, Cal. This was very properly intended by the king to be a jubilee year with his people, and at the grand celebration nothing was to be left undone which could contribute to the general enjoyment. All the people, high or low, rich or poor, from Hawaii to Kauai, were to be made welcome at Honolulu; and elaborate preparations were made for their reception. The two crowns were made in England, and were of gold studded with precious stones; from the same country came also the dresses of the queen and those of her sisters, the Princess Poomaikalani and the Princess Kekaulike. My toilets were furnished from Paris dressmaking establishments, and consisted of two complete costumes. The gown to be worn during the day at the coronation ceremony was of gold and white brocaded silk; that intended for the soirée and the royal ball was of crimson satin; each costume was perfect in itself, the lesser details being in harmony with the dress; both were heavily embroidered, and were generally considered to have been the most elegant productions of Parisian art ever seen in Hawaii on this or any other state occasion. My sister, the Princess Likelike, had sent to San Francisco for her wardrobe, which, like mine, consisted of two complete costumes, one of which was of white silk of figured brocade handsomely trimmed with pearls; her full evening dress was of silk, in color or shade styled at that time "moonlight-on-the-lake," and, with head-dress to match, it was very effective.
Even in the early part of January, from all parts of the islands, crowds began to flock to Honolulu, impatient for the promised ceremony; and from thence to the 12th day of February, 1883, the number of those visiting our capital city was daily increasing. It was an unusually rainy winter, and our streets were very muddy; but the good-natured multitude waded through the rain or mud to see what was going on, or to make their purchases at the stores, without complaint. Money was spent lavishly by the visitors; all the stores were thronged from morning to night by eager and easily satisfied purchasers. The principal establishments benefited by the money of the people were those of John Thomas Waterhouse, who had two places of business, B. F. Ehlers & Co., H. Hackfeld & Co., and T. H. Davies & Co. Besides these there were the jewelry shops, notably that of the Wenners; even the Chinese merchants came in for their share in the circulation of the money of the people.
The day to which all had been looking with eager anticipation arrived. Iolani Palace, the new building of that name, had been completed the previous year, and a large pavilion had been erected immediately in front of it for the celebration of the coronation. This was exclusively for the accommodation of the royal family; but there was adjacent thereto a sort of amphitheatre, capable of holding ten thousand persons, intended for the occupation of the people. In this building there were assigned proper stations to all the principal officers of the government, besides which the members of the diplomatic or consular bodies had their appropriate places; then there were the nobles and the delegates to the legislative assembly, the chief justice, his associates, and other officers of the court, while on the veranda of the palace on the one side were seated the officers of the vessels of war in the port, and on the other persons of rank or position who had not been otherwise assigned to stations.
IOLANI PALACE, FRONT VIEW
Promptly at the appointed time His Majesty Kalakaua, King of the Hawaiian Islands, accompanied by Her Majesty, Kapiolani, his queen, made their appearance. I give the order of the procession to the royal pavilion. Princess Kekaulike, bearing the royal feather cloak, and with her the Princess Poomaikalani; then the Princess Likelike, with the child-princess Kaiulani, and her father, Hon. A. S. Cleghorn; Governor Dominis, and myself; we were all attended by our kahili bearers, and those ancient staffs of royalty were held aloft at our sides. Then followed Prince Kaiwananakoa, bearing one of the crowns, and Prince Kalaniaanole bearing the other crown, succeeded by two others of noble birth and lineage bearing insignia of royalty of either native or traditional usage, the tabu sticks, the sceptre, and ring. Then came Their Majesties the King and Queen, attended by their kahili bearers, who stationed themselves just inside the pavilion. As the royal party entered, the queen was immediately attended by her ladies in waiting, eight in number, all attired in black velvet trimmed with white satin. The long and handsome train of Her Majesty's robe was carried by two ladies high rank and of noble lineage, Keano and Kekaulike.
The Ceremonies were opened with prayer by Rev. Mr. Mackintosh; and then followed one of those coincidences which are so striking on any such occasion, and was certainly noticed as one of the most beautiful incidents of the day. In the very act of prayer, just as he put forth his hand to lift the crown, before placing it on the brow of the king; a mist, or cloud, such as may gather very quickly in our tropical climate, was seen to pass over the sun, obscuring its light for a few minutes; then at the moment when the king was crowned there appeared, shining so brilliantly as to attract general attention, a single star. It was noticed by the entire multitude assembled to witness the pageant, and a murmur of wonder and admiration passed over the throng. The ceremonies proceeded with due solemnity, and the whole scene was very impressive and not to be forgotten. At its close the company retired to the palace in the same order as that in which it had come forth; and the day ceremonies being over the crowd dispersed, retiring to rest from the fatigues and excitements of the day, so as to be able to enter with zest into the festivities of the evening, as a grand ball was to be given at the palace. Indeed, the entire grounds were given up to pleasure such as can only be fully imagined by those who have actually mingled with a happy people in the festivities of a tropical night.
Throughout the week one diversion followed another; until, with citizens and visitors almost surfeited with merrymaking, it came to an end, and Honolulu once more settled down to its every-day quiet and routine. Certainly the coronation celebration had been a great success. The people from the country and from the other islands went back to their homes with a renewed sense of the dignity and honor involved in their nationality, and an added interest in the administration of their government. Honolulu had been benefited in the mean time financially, the merchants and traders of every degree reaping a bountiful harvest from the free expenditure of money by every class. The king has, however, been blamed for expending the public revenues for such a purpose, and this festival is still cited as an instance of his "reckless extravagance." A considerable contingent of the people of New England objected, if I have read correctly, to the building of the Bunker Hill Monument. In my own view the expenditure in either case was quite justified by the end sought. The Saviour himself was once accused of extravagance, or at least of permitting it, not, however, by a truly loyal disciple. The men who "carry the bag" are not always the best judges of royal obligations. It was necessary to confirm the new family "Stirps" – to use the words of our constitution – by a celebration of unusual impressiveness. There was a serious purpose of national importance; the direct line of the "Kamahamehas" having become extinct, it was succeeded by the "Keawe-a-Heulu" line, its founder having been first cousin to the father of Kamahameha I. It was wise and patriotic to spend money to awaken in the people a national pride. Naturally, those among us who did not desire to have Hawaii remain a nation would look on an expenditure of this kind as worse than wasted.
IN the Spring of 1884 the Princess Ruth completed a handsome residence on Emma Street, and gave a grand luau to celebrate the event. This was followed by a splendid ball in the evening, which was attended by all the best society of Honolulu, whether of native or foreign birth. But after this festivity the princess was taken suddenly ill, and left for Kailua on Hawaii in hopes that the journey would restore her health. She was accompanied by Mrs. Bernice Pauahi Bishop, her own cousin, and also by Mrs. Haalelea. She received every attention, but notwithstanding this, did not recover; and on the twenty-forth day of May her remains were brought back to Honolulu, and laid in state in the handsome new house, Keouahale, which she had just erected. Keouahale has recently been purchased for school purposes by the present government of Hawaii. While lying there in state, the usual native ceremonies attending the death and obsequies of a high chief were accorded to her remains. There were the daily attendance of watchers, the waving of kahilis, and singing of the chants of the departed. To explain the latter I might add, that whenever a child was born into one of the families of the high chiefs, it was customary to compose a chant, not only in honor of the event, but further rehearsing the genealogy of the infant, the deeds of its ancestors, and any daring acts of wonderful valor and prowess in which they had participated. These chants were committed to memory, and passed along from mouth to mouth amongst the retainers of that chief. At the death, as at the birth, they were intoned in honor of the one for whom they were composed. I have my own chant, which has been sacred to me all my lifetime. Any child of noble birth who has no such record, were it possible to suppose such a case, would be judged unworthy its rank. It was a further custom observed amongst us for all chiefs of rank parallel to that of the deceased to remain at the house which contained the remains whilst the body was lying in state. So on this occasion Queen Emma, Mrs. Bishop, the Princess Likelike, and myself, all took up our residence at the mansion so recently occupied by Princess Ruth. The celebration of the last rites of interment did not take place until three weeks after her death. When all the honors which her royal rank required had been accorded to her remains, and these had been laid in the mausoleum, it was found that her sole heir was Mrs. Bishop, her nearest living relative, who not only inherited the beautiful residence, but further, all the property of her cousin. Not long after these events it was found that Mrs. Bishop was in failing health; and on consultation with Dr. Trousseau, she was told that the nature of her malady was so grave that she should lose no time in taking advice from the best physicians in San Francisco, to which city he counselled she should go at the earliest opportunity. She accordingly went. On her arrival, she was informed by Dr. Lane that her disease was of the nature of cancer, and that immediate surgical treatment was the best course. She submitted to an operation, and on her recovery from this, returned to the islands. My sister, the Princess Likelike, was in San Francisco at the same time, and returned to Honolulu with her towards the end of that summer. Mrs. Bishop went to her Waikiki residence; and when I called to see if there wasn anything I could do for her, she besought me to come and stay with her, which I did until the day of her death. It was here that I first noticed the great change which had come over the mind of Queen Emma, and which was more plainly noticed at or just after Mrs. Bishop's decease. About two weeks before the close of her life, it was thought best to remove Mrs. Bishop to Keouahale; but she failed rapidly from the day of the change until the 16th of October, 1884, when she was released from her painful experience. Then there followed a repetition of those rites and ceremonies customary on the death and burial of the high chiefs, such as that house had but just witnessed in the case of Princess Ruth. It was at this time more especially that Queen Emma showed plainly by her peculiar actions that she was suffering from some malady. As time passed away the progress of physical disorder seemed to go on; she grew nothing better, but rather worse, and in the month of April, 1885, she died. Then followed a queer proceeding on the part of her agent. At first the remains were laid in state at her own house; but Mr. Cartwright and a few of his friends took it into their heads to have the casket removed to Kawaiahao church, the apology being that her house was not large enough to accommodate such a gathering as would come together on the day of the funeral. This was accordingly done, much to the wonder and displeasure of those who had charge of the church, and of the friends of the departed queen. Queen Emma was not an attendant there. On the contrary, she had been chiefly instrumental in the founding of the Anglican Mission, and was an Episcopalian. Why, then, supposing it had been at all necessary to select a church for her funeral, did they not select the Episcopal church? That was her own church, and she should have been buried therefrom; for while living she had shown strong attachment to it, and an equally strong feeling of opposition to other denominations. The persons selected by her agent to guard her remains showed no regard for the sacredness of the place. They smoked, feasted, and sang songs while awaiting the last solemn rites due to the dead. However, when the day of the burial came, Bishop Willis of the English Church adapted himself to the circumstances, and officiated from the Congregational pulpit with the ritual of his own church; after which, with all the pomp and splendor due to her state as a queen amongst the sovereigns of the Hawaiian people, she was borne up the Nuuanu Valley, and laid by the side of her husband, Alexander Liholiho, or Kamehameha IV.
When the will of Mrs. Bernice Pauahi Bishop was read, in which she disposed of her own estate, I did not happen to be present; but her husband, Hon. Charles R. Bishop, informed me that I had been duly remembered, that his wife had bequeathed me the lands of Kahala, island of Oahu, Lumahai on Kauai, Kealia in Kona, Hawaii; besides which he sent me a pair of diamond wristlets, a diamond pin with crown which had once belonged to the Princess Ruth, and a necklace of pearls beautifully chased and set in tigers' claws. But nevertheless I must own to one great disappointment. The estate which had been so dear to us both in my childhood, the house built by my father, Paki, where I had lived as a girl, which was connected with many happy memories of my early life, from whence I had been married to Governor Dominis, when he took me to Washington Place, I could not help feeling ought to have been left to me. The estate was called Haleakala, or House of the Sun, and the residence received the name of Aikupika; but both these are forgotten now in that of the Arlington Hotel. This wish of my heart was not gratified, and at the present day strangers stroll through the grounds or lounge on the piazzas of that home once so dear to me. Yet memories of my adopted parents still cling to that homestead, and rise before me not only when I pass its walls, but as I recall in a foreign land the days of my youth.
ANOTHER provision of the will of Mrs. Bishop may be noticed here. It was found that she had made ample provision for the education of the people of her race; and an educational and industrial institute was to be erected, specially limited in its mission to young Hawaiians. The privileges of this commendable charity were likewise restricted by the benefactor to those of the Protestant faith. The Presbyterian churches in Hawaii may profit by this devise; but those of the English Catholic or Roman Catholic Missions are excluded because of their religion, which scarcely makes the institution a national benefit.
In the early part of the year 1886 His Majesty Kalakaua designed and established an organization for benevolent work amongst his people; it was called the Hooululahui. The first meeting of the society having been appointed at Kawaiahao Church, there was a good attendance of the first ladies of the city, not only those of Hawaiian families, but also of foreign birth. It was my brother's intention that the society should have as its head Her Majesty Kapiolani, his queen; but to make it more efficient and systematic in its work, the society was divided into three departments. Of these, the first embraced the central part of the city of Honolulu, and this was under the presidency of the queen. Next came the lower part of Honolulu, Kaumakapili, extending as far as Maemae, and embracing all the district beyond Palama, which was assigned to my management and presidency. In like manner the third division, Kawaiahao, extending through Waikiki and Manoa, Pauoa, and a certain portion of the city, was assigned to my sister, the Princess Likelike. All denominations, including the Roman Catholics, were invited to co-operate in the good work. The Princesses Poomaikalani and Kekaulike, neither of whom is now living, gave their aid to the queen. The former was made governess of Hawaii, and the latter governess of Kauai. These two ladies did all in their power to assist Queen Kapiolani in her work of charity, and my sister and myself were equally interested to attend the needs of our departments; but the responsibility for the general management was really upon the King, who not only had to assume the financial burden, but gave to the work the weight of his official influence, and always responded cheerfully to our calls upon him for advice, giving to us with liberality the advantage of his own good judgment. The people responded with good-will from other parts of the islands, and the work has gone on for over ten years since it was first established by my brother. Of those then interested, Queen Kapiolani and myself are the only two of the managers now living. At Princess Likelike and the other two princesses died, their departments came more under the personal management of the queen. Like many other enterprises of charity, the original intentions of the founders have been improved upon; and the society is merged in other good works, or its purposes diverted to slightly different ends. The organization is now consolidated in the Maternity Home; the charitable funds which used to be distributed amongst the poor, the amounts contributed by the people everywhere to carry out the designs of the king, are still doing good through this institution, of which the Dowager Queen Kapiolani is the president, assisted by a board of managers consisting of notable Hawaiian ladies, and by others of foreign descent.
In the year 1886 I organized an educational society, the intention of which was to interest the Hawaiian ladies in the proper training of young girls of their own race whose parents would be unable to give them advantages by which they would be prepared for the duties of life. As no such association had ever existed, although there had been frequent cases of private benevolence, it seemed a good time to interest those who had the means in this important work. Therefore I called a meeting, notifying all whom I thought would be likely to attend. The response was very gratifying, and on the appointed afternoon a goodly number of our best ladies assembled in the Kawaiahao church. The meeting was opened with prayer; after which I arose, made a short address, and explained to the audience my purpose in requesting attention to the moral and intellectual needs of those of our sex who were just beginning life. These remarks seemed to meet the approval of all present; but yet, in looking around, it was evident to me that the society would be more prosperous in two divisions, as there were those in attendance who could not work well together. My sister, the Princess Likelike, was of our number; so I suggested that she should be the head or president of one division, and I would take the other. Names were then taken, those who announced their willingness to work for the subject were enrolled, and the association was called "The Liliuokalani Educational Society." At our second meeting a constitution was drawn, submitted for approval, and adopted. Both branches then began their work, which went on with results that at one time appeared to be most encouraging. But my sister did not live a year after this movement had begun, and on her death circumstances operated to impair the efficiency of the society. However, her branch of it came under my personal direction; and the object for which I had called the meeting was never forgotten, nor was the education of the young girls of Hawaiian birth neglected either by myself or by those I had interested in its importance, until the changed conditions of January, 1893, obliged me to live in retirement.
On the twenty-fourth day of September; 1886, by request from the king, a charter was granted by the privy council to the Hale Naua, or Temple of Science. Probably some of its forms had been taken by my brother from the Masonic ritual, and others may have been taken from the old and harmless ceremonies of the ancient people of the Hawaiian Islands, which were then only known to the priests of the highest orders. Under the work of this organization was embraced matters of science known to historians, and recognized by the priests of our ancient times. The society further held some correspondence with similar scientific associations in foreign lands, to whom it communicated its proceedings. The result was some correspondence with those bodies, who officially accepted the theories propounded by the Hale Naua; and in recognition of this acceptance medals were sent from abroad to the members highest in rank in the Hawaiian society. Unworthy and unkind reflections have been made on the purposes of this society by those who knew nothing of it. Persons with mean and little minds can readily assign false motives to actions intended for good, and attribute to lofty ideas a base purpose or unholy intention. That some good has been done by this organization the members themselves could readily certify. It had been the custom before the days of His Majesty Kalakaua (it is the usage even to the present day) for the chiefs to support the destitute and to bury the dead. This society opened to them an organized method of doing this; it cared for the sick, and it provided for the funerals of the dead. Had the king lived, more good would have been done, and the society would have been in a more flourishing condition; yet the money contributed for its purposes while he lived was invested in stocks, and many persons have drawn benefits from the dividends. Although it was small, it was a beginning.
ON the second day of February, 1887, died the Princess Miriam Likelike, wife of Hon. A. S. Cleghorn, leaving one child, an interesting little girl of eleven years of age, to begin the serious business of life without a mother. She is now the Princess Kaiulani, and has been receiving her education abroad since her fifteenth year. I was tenderly attached to my sister, so much so that her decease had an unfavorable effect on my health. It was, therefore, with satisfaction that I received from my brother, the king, a most unexpected proposition. This was that I should accompany the queen to the grand jubilee at London, in honor of the fiftieth year of the reign of the great and good Queen of Great Britain. It was on a Saturday night early in April that I received this invitation, which I at once accepted. As I was at that time living at my Palama residence, early on Sunday morning I sent a despatch to my husband, who was with his mother at Washington Palace, asking him to come to see me immediately, which he did. I then told him of what had transpired between His Majesty and myself, and that it was my wish and intention to accept. He cordially agreed with me, and said that he would like to be of the party, of which I was very glad. But I was still better pleased when, acting under my advice, he consulted the king, and returned as quickly as he could to tell me that it was settled that he should go with us. Only a few days of necessary preparation were left to us; and by the 12th of April we were ready to embark on the steamship Australia, by which we had taken passage for San Francisco.
Reproduced, by permission, from a photograph by Elmer Chickering, Boston
But I could not think of leaving without saying farewell to some little girls, five in number, the charge of whose education I had assumed, and who were at Kawaiahao seminary. So on the day of departure, at about eleven o'clock I stopped at the schoolhouse. At my coming all the pupils were gathered together into the large room, where I made them an impromptu address, telling them of my intention to sail immediately for foreign lands, encouraging them to be faithful to their duty to their teachers, and warning them that it would distress me more than could be expressed should I ever hear that any of them had done other than right during my absence. After these few farewell words I left the institution, I must confess with some fears in my heart, some misgivings as to the future of some of the girls whom I had addressed. But these doubts were set at rest by their letters, and it made me very happy while I was abroad to hear accounts of their progress and continued good behavior.
The next call after my leaving the seminary was upon my mother-in-law, Mrs. Dominis, to whom, at her home in Washington Place, I bade an affectionate adieu. Then, accompanied by my husband, I proceeded directly to the steamer. Queen Kapiolani and her attendants were already on board; the king was awaiting us there to bid the party farewell. When this was over, and His Majesty had gone ashore, the word was given to get under way, and the steamer took her departure in the presence of one of those immense crowds which throng the wharves on such occasions. On the seventh day out we were boarded by the pilot off the Golden Gate; it was early morning, but by nine o'clock of the same day we were steaming toward our berth at the wharf. On the third day at sea my husband was attacked with rheumatism, which rendered him perfectly helpless, so that he had to be carried ashore on a stretcher. Kind friends succeeded in taking him to the Palace Hotel without occasioning him severe pain, for which attentions they earned my gratitude.
We remained in the city of San Francisco about one week, during which the health of General Dominis improved so that we took one of the northern routes for the city of Washington. While at San Francisco the queen improved every moment to see what she could of the city, this being her first visit to any foreign country. In this pleasure I was unable to participate, my husband's illness having rendered me a watcher by his bedside. But I made the acquaintance of two very charming princesses from Tahiti. They were lovely ladies; one was the Princess Moetia, the other the Arii Manihinihi.
From San Francisco our party pursued its journey across the continent. At Sacramento we received some pleasant attentions, and there were peculiarities of nature in scenery and changing seasons which were most interesting to those from a land of perpetual summer. When we arrived at Summit, for example, there were the lofty peaks covered with their snowy mantles. This was similar, but more extensive, to what we could witness on the tops of the highest mountains on Hawaii; but here it was universal, and the valleys were also filled with snowbanks. Then, when we passed through the long snow-sheds the train came to a stop for a few minutes while some members of our party got off to examine the snow, which blew through the cracks or crevices in the boards to the railroad track. Taking it up and rolling it in their hands, they made snowballs, and pelted each other with it, quite ordinary sport for cold climates, but a rare opportunity for those born in the Hawaiian Islands, and to be always remembered as a novel experience. After coming forth from the sheds again into the light of day, we descended gradually until we reached the Great Salt Lake; and at the city of the same name, the capital of Utah, we stopped a few hours, meeting not only many of the prominent elders of the Mormon Church, but quite a number of our own people who were living there. These were naturally much delighted to meet visitors of their nation so far from home. After a short rest we resumed our eastward course.
The next principal place of which I have a vivid recollection is Denver, which was an infant city then, comparatively just springing into being; there were but a few scattered houses, quite distant from the line of the railway, and not very suggestive of such a thriving city as it is now, I hear, on the site of those humble beginnings. But that which had interested us most along our line of travel was the trees without a sign of leaves or blossoms, since with us the verdure is perennial; and the sight of shrubs or bushes, or even lofty trees, standing out bare of foliage or flower, struck us very strangely. We made no stop in Chicago, and the oil regions of Pennsylvania were the next natural wonders to interest us as we passed through them on the train. Here there were signs of the coming of the summer, the tree-tops being covered with opening foliage, and the grass growing greener. There were some few spring flowers to be seen in bud or blossom by the waysides, and Nature welcomed us with a display of her beauties akin to those of which we had taken farewell in our own beautiful islands.
We arrived safely at Washington, and found comfortable quarters at the Arlington Hotel. Our party consisted of the following individuals: Her Majesty Queen Kapiolani, wife of my brother, the reigning king; Lieutenant-General J. O. Dominis, governor of the island of Oahu, and myself; Colonel C. P. Iaukea, Colonel J. H. Boyd; besides which each of us had our attendants, the queen having four, and each of the others at least one attendant or valet.
A FEW days after our arrival the Queen signified her wish to call on the President, so we all attended Her Majesty to the White House. President Cleveland and his beautiful young bride most cordially received and hospitably entertained us; and a more recent experience of my own would prove that neither one of them has ever forgotten that their position required them to be really the first lady and the first gentleman of the land.
At two o'clock in the afternoon of the same day our call was returned by Mrs. Cleveland, accompanied by the ladies of the cabinet. No person could have shown in her presence a fairer type of youth and loveliness than the wife of the President, and her manner was graceful and dignified in a rare degree for so young a lady. She impressed us with a conviction, since most abundantly justified, that she was well chosen for the duties and responsibilities of an exalted position. On the day following her call we were invited to dine at the executive mansion. The Queen occupied the seat of the guest of honor at the right of President Cleveland, the Secretary of State, Mr. Endicott, attended me to my seat on the President's left; the Hawaiian Minister, Hon. H. A. P. Carter, was assigned to a seat on Mrs. Cleveland's right; while General Dominis, my husband, waited upon Mrs. Endicott, and was at Mrs. Cleveland's left. The remaining members of the Queen's party were disposed of in proper order, and the dinner passed off with cheerfulness and in due form; it was a grand affair, and arranged with the best of taste. The apartment where it was held had been decorated to do honor to the occasion. The toilet of Her Majesty Queen Kapiolani was of white silk brocade of the choicest Japanese manufacture, artistically embroidered with heavy raised and richly worked designs; it was cut in Hawaiian fashion, a loosely flowing robe of a pattern or mode very becoming to our women, whether made of inexpensive calico or print, or of the finest of silks or most lustrous of satins. A description of this dress was given by all the newspapers, and attracted so much attention that on our arrival abroad the Queen was requested to wear the dress at court, with which solicitation she was happy to comply.
Next to the courtesies extended by the President and the ladies of the executive, perhaps the consideration shown to us by dignitaries of the Masonic order most deserves my notice. General Albert Pike, accompanied by thirteen members of the Supreme Council, thirty-third degree, Scottish Rite, called on the Queen and myself. He was a person of most impressive appearance, a venerable gentleman with long flowing beard and silky white hair resting on his square shoulders, and with the kind, benevolent character and charming manners so appropriate to his official position as the head of the order of fraternity and charity. He greeted us with dignity and cordiality, and left with Queen Kapiolani and myself written evidences of the consideration with which we were regarded by his order. These were certificates, of which mine is always carried with me, giving us the privilege of an appeal to the brethren of the fraternity in any part of the world wherever or whenever they could be of use to us. Both General Pike and the members of his staff were well acquainted with my husband, because General Dominis was of the same Masonic rank, and had maintained frequent correspondence with them on subjects of interest to the world-wide and useful society. While it has now been a joy to me to find my husband still remembered by the Masons of Washington, and to receive from them on my own part evidences of continued interest, I have sorrowed to find some places vacant in the number of those who greeted me so cordially ten years ago, notably that of General Pike.
SCENERY ON THE ESTATE OF PRINCESS KAIULANI
THE FISH POND
Many other visitors and social attentions caused the time to fly past most agreeably, several entertainments where the Queen and her party were the guests of honor having been arranged for by the Minister of Hawaii to the United States, the Hon. Henry A. P. Carter. On one of these we were taken to the barracks, and invited to a careful inspection of the quarters for the officers and men. We were received with honors by the commanding officers and their wives, and taken all over the buildings, while the numberless comforts and conveniences of the establishment were exhibited and explained to us. After this an artillery drill was ordered for our special benefit, and we had the pleasure of seeing how expeditiously both men and horses could work the great and destructive field-pieces. After a few hours pleasantly spent in this manner, we returned to our hotel, intending to visit the great historic spot of the American Union on the day following.
So, at as early an hour as was convenient for Her Majesty to be ready, carriages were taken for the wharf, where a boat was awaiting us, placed as our disposal by the courtesy of the United States government. A number of prominent ladies and gentlemen were already on board to be our companions and entertainers, amongst whom I recall the names of Mr. John Sherman, then senator, now Secretary of State; Mr. Evarts, the celebrated lawyer; and many senators, whose names I do not now recall, with their wives. When we were all on board, the lines were cast off, and the little steamer started on her way down the river. It was in the beautiful month of May. The trees were out with their fresh green leaves, the early flowering shrubs were in blossom, and the banks at the riverside were lined with verdure.
The different points of interest, forts, monuments, and public buildings, were pointed out to us, and places we had often heard mentioned identified as we passed along. Near to the grounds, however, the band which had accompanied us, discoursing the sweetest of music, changed to more solemn cadences; and, as the edifices which mark the sacred spot came in sight, the American flag was lowered, the steamer's bell was tolled, the gentlemen removed their hats, and the air of the "Star Spangled Banner" was rendered with impressive effect. The steamer then came to a standstill, and boats were lowered. Into the first the Queen entered; and the whole party disembarked, occupying in all five boats in their transportation ashore. There was but one vehicle at the boat-landing, into which those of us who wished to ride entered, and the party was conveyed to the mansion house.
On arriving we were requested to register our names in the book kept for the purpose in the great central hall; from there we were conducted to the banquet-hall, passing through a smaller room where there was a little, old-fashioned square piano, said to have been the property of George Washington.
The rooms which had been used by General Washington, General Lafayette, and by Martha Washington were opened to us; and we were permitted to enter, and, further, to pause in the lady's bedroom to listen to the story of her constancy to the memory of her husband, whose grave she watched, as she sat daily at her window, from the day of his interment to that of her own death. This story, with the scene of its happening around me as I listened, was most touching to my heart; the simple four-posted, old-fashioned bedstead, with its chintz curtains, the arm-chair with valance and chintz-covering, the well-worn steps descending to a lower floor, – these homely souvenirs all spoke to me of the sister woman who had sat and reflected over the loss of that heroic life which it was her privilege to share, and rendered the visit almost too sadly interesting for the accompaniment of a pleasure tour. Why is it, by the way, that she is now "Martha Washington," when even in that day she was always mentioned as "Lady Washington"? Is it a part of the etiquette of the new woman's era, or of the advancing democratic idea?
Another change I noticed in a recent visit was that bars are now placed at the doorways where then we were allowed to enter with perfect liberty to examine everything in the rooms. As time has passed, and the means of visiting the sacred shrine have become more available to the many, it has been found necessary to exclude the crowds that go to Mount Vernon; for the relic-hunter shows no respect to that which is the common property and the priceless heirloom of the people of the United States. So the ladies of the association having the care of this estate are obliged to protect the antique furniture and ancient ornaments from too close inspection.
After spending many interesting moments in the examination of the house and its contents, we went out upon the lawn, and had our photographs taken in a group, Mr. Sherman being the Queen's escort, and Mr. Evarts performing a like gallant duty for me. The next point of interest was the tomb where lie the mortal remains of that great man who assisted at the birth of the nation which has grown to be so great. Although it is but an humble resting-place for one so honored in the remembrance of mankind, yet the sight of the sarcophagus of the general and his wife as they lay side by side, the fresh, warm sunlight streaming through the iron bars which formed the gateway or entrance to the tomb, made a great impression on me; and although the Queen's party were silent, and exchanged no comments, it seemed to me that we were one in our veneration of the sacred spot and of the first President of his country. After this lull in the conversation, the party turned as if by common consent to retrace their steps toward the river, where our boats awaited us. The wild-flowers were blooming beside our footsteps, the birds were chirping in the budding trees, or chasing each other through the branches. Mount Vernon was at its loveliest. There was more of the real face of nature there then than is found to-day, for now the wild flowers are notably absent. We returned to the city with the consciousness of taking with us the pleasantest of memories of our excursion, and a renewed appreciation of the hospitality of the nation whose capital city we were visiting.
LEAVING Washington, we next visited the city of Boston, where on arrival we found that apartments had been engaged for us at the Parker House. We considered these the pleasantest rooms we had seen, and enjoyed excessively the liberality and good taste with which the city council had arranged for our comfort and pleasure. A committee from that body waited upon us, and did everything possible to make our visit a success. Receptions were given to us by His Excellency Governor Ames, and by His Honor Mayor O'Brien, to which cards of invitation were sent to well-known and prominent citizens. But besides these there was a general reception held at the Mechanics' Pavilion, an audience chamber capable of holding some twelve thousand persons; and it seemed as though everybody came, for it was packed with dense masses of people of either sex, to its farthest corner. We shook hands with multitudes. They seemed to enjoy it; and I know we took its fatigues most good-naturedly, as a delightful experience of democratic good-will.
Many pleasant excursions were arranged for our party while in Boston; amongst these was one to the Waltham Watch Factory, in which we were very much interested. To see each part of so delicate a piece of mechanism as a watch made from its very beginning until the perfect timepiece was ready for the wearer, afforded us much pleasure, and gave a new enjoyment to the possession of these indispensable articles.
We were shown the harbor or port of Boston, by means of a trip to Deer Island, and made visits to the city institutions for the care of criminals and paupers, and to other localities of interest. A small steamer was provided for our party and the invited guests of the city; refreshments were served on board, and everything was done to make the afternoon pleasant for us. Queen Kapiolani was much interested in the quarters assigned to the women at Deer Island, and went through them with careful inspection. There was one inmate with whom the Queen spoke most kindly; she was a woman said to be over a hundred years old, and was yet in the possession of her faculties.
Mr. and Mrs. Benjamin Keola Pitman, formerly residents of the Hawaiian Islands, accompanied us that day. From Mr. Benjamin Pitman, Sr., we had already received a visit at the Parker House. Which sudden reversion to personal friends leads me naturally to say, that, apart from the hospitalities received from the city of Boston, a day was reserved in which we received the relatives of my husband in a family gathering. At the hour appointed we descended to the reception room, and I found myself indeed amongst friends. There were the Lees, the Snellings, the Joneses, the Jabcobses, the Emersons, and others whose names I cannot at this moment recall. I also remember one most welcome guest, not of our own family, Mr. George W. Armstrong.
There were a hundred or more, old and young, relatives of whom General Dominis had often spoken to me, and even some whom he himself now met for the first time, but all cordially happy to recognize their relations from those distant Sandwich Islands of which they had so often heard. There were kisses, affectionate embraces, and many other expressions of regard which made me feel that I was at home with my own family rather than with strangers in a foreign land. The day passed speedily and pleasantly away.
But the time arrived when we must bid adieu to our hospitable entertainers, and depart for the city of New York. In New York we remained eleven days before sailing for England; but I was ill during this time, apparently from a severe cold, and obliged to rest quietly in my rooms at the hotel. During my illness Mrs. James B. Williams was very attentive to me, often calling to see me, accompanied by her husband and daughter. She even sent her own family physician. The Queen and the rest of the party improved the time in the great metropolis, seeing as much as possible of all there was to be seen, and receiving many attentions from prominent individuals. Admiral Gherardi's ship was lying in port, to which Queen Kapiolani and her party made a visit, being received by the gallant sailor with all the honors due to her rank and station. She was also much interested in her visit to the Metropolitan Museum, the mummies exciting her curiosity and wonder, as speaking of the people of a remote antiquity.
My interest was also aroused, and in spite of illness I accompanied the party. I recall a queer little mummy, centuries old, of whose history we learned some most peculiar details. After yards and yards of linen cloth had been unrolled, there was exhibited to us a prettily formed little hand; it was very lifelike, dark-colored, but appearing as that of a person who had but recently died; we were told that the mummy was of a woman, and that the writings with it signified she had been the mother of three children. It was very wonderful how perfectly everything had been preserved by the embalmer's art, even the cloth in which the form had been wrapped being in a perfect state of preservation. But the naturalness of the hand made the curiosity almost too startling for enjoyment, and I turned away from the sight because it spoke too plainly of death and burial.
We met many pleasant people in the city of New York, yet it is natural that I should recall best those of whose history I knew something in my own country. We visited Mrs. Kaikilani Graham, a lady of Hawaiian birth, who had married a resident of this city. She and her husband received us very cordially in a convenient little suite of rooms, or "flat," just cosey enough for the newly wedded pair. She took great pride in showing to us their child, a pretty baby; and she was happy in the fact that it was born on American soil.
But our eleven days' visit was drawing to a close, and the steamer by which we were to embark for our destination was ready for our reception. This was the City of Rome, the largest steamship I had ever seen, and at that time about the largest afloat in the world. As we stood on the deck to bid farewell to the land, it was very amusing to me to see the four little steamers plying about our slowly moving hull, pushing the bow this way and that, so that our course might be directed towards the broad ocean; finally it would appear that their purpose was accomplished, and drawing away from us, they allowed the huge ship to make her own way down the harbor and off to sea.
She was crowded with passengers, at least a thousand souls being on board, all sorts and conditions of men and women. There were a large number of musical people – well-known singers or musicians – going abroad for study, or leaving for their homes after professional engagements in America; the usual number of health seekers; those tourists who may be found everywhere intent on seeing the world; then a few like ourselves, to whom the Queen's Jubilee was the grand attraction abroad. A strange mixture of humanity, and just at the place where one has little to occupy the mind save to study those by whom one is surrounded. It was interesting to see the different methods by which each person sought to pass away the time; to me it was natural to turn to music, my usual solace in either happy or sad moments, so I composed songs, one of which certainly was written in anticipation of meeting in the person of the good queen all that was greatest and noblest in a woman or a sovereign. These hopes were fully realized during our stay in London.
Many of the passengers had recourse to the ship's library, which was well supplied with books from the best authors; and with these they beguiled the time away reading, while reclining in their steamer chairs on the decks. Some with less of literary taste played games; while there were also the languid or lazy, who did nothing but lounge about the decks and wish the time away. By the kindness of the musical part of our company, some two or three concerts were given in the main saloon of our great ship, and were well attended. Through them quite a sum was raised for sundry charitable objects. Although the names of the performers have passed from my memory, yet I remember that it was asserted at the time that these voices, of which they made a gift to the cause and a pleasure to us, were of great value in the musical or operatic world.
There was one purpose for which an entertainment was given which was peculiar to this ship and this voyage. It was for the benefit of a shipwrecked crew we had on board. Just outside of the port of New York there had been a frightful collision, and the City of Rome had been fortunate enough to rescue a goodly number of those who otherwise might have found a watery grave. Their condition, however, was pitiable; for they had saved nothing of their effects, and in the confusion of the wreck had lost husbands, wives, or travelling companions. After their rescue some were lying in pain and suffering on board our ship, uncertain what had become of those dear to them. Their desolate condition appealed to all hearts, and we were only too glad to attend the concert and contribute our share to their relief. Then there was the regular concert which is held aboard all the steamships which ply the Atlantic route, that for the British sailors, whose widows and orphans look to the multitude of tourists for funds to aid them in the hour of need.
There was but one hindrance to our enjoyment of the passage across, and this was not to be avoided. For a few days the weather was thick and misty, so that the dismal sound of the great fog-horn of the City of Rome never ceased by day or night. But, after all, the delights and troubles of the trip were soon over. In about five days we were told to prepare to see the coast of Ireland; in another twenty-four hours we had landed the mails at Queenstown, and were on our way from thence to our port of destination, Liverpool.
OUR earliest greeting came from Col. George W. Macfarlane, who sent off two magnificent bouquets, one for Queen Kapiolani and one for myself. There were received in the stream, because our steamer was of such immense size that she did not proceed immediately to the dock, but lay off a distance of about five miles. But while we were at lunch a small steamer was seen approaching our vessel; and as we were told that this was intended to transfer us to the shore, we at once made preparations to leave the City of Rome. But there was to be quite a state reception before we were permitted by our friends to land. For by the "tender," or steam-tug, there came many passengers to greet us, and these had been conducted to the grand saloon. It was the intention of Queen Kapiolani to go there in order to bid the captain of the ship farewell, but on our arrival we were met by quite a company. Amongst these were the Hon. Theodore H. Davies, the British Consul to Hawaii; Mr. R. H. Armstrong, the Hawaiian Consul at London; Rt. Rev. Bishop Staley, formerly Anglican Bishop of Honolulu; Mr. Janion of the mercantile house of Janion, Greene, & Co., long in mercantile relations with the Hawaiian Islands. These all bent the knee, kissed the hand of the queen, and saluted the rest of us with proper form; after which the conversation became general, and some most pleasant moments passed in cordial greetings with these our friends. Finally we were transferred to the little steamer, and started towards the shore. On our way we were much interested in the great stone piers, the walls, the fortifications, – all of which were pointed out and explained by those who welcomed us. On passing the forts we were told that the salutes to the royal party had been fired, as was ordered the moment it was telegraphed that we were safely across the great oceans of the Pacific and Atlantic.
A half-hour's sail brought us to the pier selected for our landing. The little steamer was made fast, and we prepared to disembark. Looking up the wharves all along the piers, just as far as the eye could reach, on the right or on the left, could be seen thousands of heads; the populace generally had heard of the expected landing of Her Majesty the Queen of the far-off Sandwich Islands, and there had been a grand rush of the curious of the city to meet her and her suite. As we landed from the steamer, directly on our left was a military escort which consisted of about one hundred of the soldiers of Her Majesty Queen Victoria. These had arrived from Southampton that very day, and were specially detailed to do us honor. They were a splendid body of men; and as we passed along in front of them to our carriages, they presented arms and saluted the queen while the band which was with them played the well-known strains of the British national anthem, "God Save the Queen." Then the party moved up the dock, at the gateways of which, or entrance to the city, we were met by the lord mayor of Liverpool, with his attendants. He was decorated with the insignia of his office, and welcomed us to the city of which he was the official head.
Here our party was increased by the addition of a larger number of our friends, amongst whom I recollect Mrs. Janion with two young nieces; Mr. John Macfie, son of Mr. R. A. Macfie; Mrs. R. H. Armstrong; and also an official representative of Her Majesty Queen Victoria, who was assigned to us during our stay. This was Mr. R. T. Synge, a gentleman of the Foreign Office, whom Lord Salisbury, then Premier of England, had intrusted with the charge of our party. I think our retinue consisted of five carriages with outriders on each side. Queen Kapiolani and I occupied the coach in which was the lord mayor. My husband, Colonel Iaukea, and Colonel Boyd had a carriage to themselves, attended by one of the city officials. As I looked through the windows I could not refrain from remarking on the splendid appearance of the cavalry by which we were escorted. The men were all tall, square-shouldered, muscular looking fellows, of equal height and similar appearance. The horses, too, were just as carefully matched, being alike in color, a rich brown, splendily caparisoned, and with all their accoutrements of the neatest and most carefully burnished materials. They rode along proudly by our sides; but, although it was scarcely the season for it, I remember noticing that the steam came from the nostrils of the horses as if it were cold weather. I was told that the peculiar atmosphere of the city of Liverpool, damp to saturation, made this phenomenon quite usual.
Arriving at the Northwestern Hotel, we were conducted from our carriages to the quarters which had been reserved for us. After rest and dinner, the queen and most of the party went to the theatre; but I had not fully recovered from the severe cold taken in New York, and did not consider it prudent to go out.
About eleven that night the queen's party returned from the theatre, and the next morning there was an elaborate breakfast given to us by the lord mayor; he himself escorted the queen. Lord Derby was assigned to me; he was a most agreeable gentleman. There were many other persons of prominence present, and the entertainment passed off very delightfully. Later we were taken to an organ recital given for our enjoyment by a gentleman who was said to be the best organist in all England. On the day following we took a train, intending to go to Norwich to visit a country gentleman by the name of Stewart. On our way we passed by fields covered with the richest blossoms of yellow gold; the display extended over acres and acres of fertile lands, and was indeed lovely to the sight, even had there not been an element of usefulness connected with it. We were told that these were mustard fields, from whence the seed is raised that is ground and used so extensively on our tables the world over. We also passed through pretty villages, their neat dwellings surrounding the parish church with its tall steeple; in fact, we were charmed with our introduction to the country life of a land of which we had always heard, Old England.
Finally, there was pointed out to us a picturesque castle which had been owned by some celebrated family somewhere about the sixteenth century. But the family to whom it had descended becoming extinct, or unable to maintain there a proper state, the estate had been purchased by Mr. Stewart, who was a man of great wealth, and it had been made a most attractive country-seat. The grounds were extensive, and taken care of with the utmost attention. The occupant had but one child, a son, heir to not less than a couple of millions on his attainment of majority, and the probable successor of his father to this great and beautiful estate. Prior to our arrival at the mansion, while we were at Ipswich, the mayor of the city came forth to welcome us; he was clothed with the robes of office, and was attended by others bearing the insignia of power. He gave us a most cordial greeting; and in his company we met our host, who, with his amiable wife and only son, did all that was possible to make us at home in his magnificent castle.
A dinner was arranged for that evening, and all the prominent people of the immediate vicinity were invited to be present to meet us. During the evening the mace of Queen Elizabeth was exhibited to us by the lady in whose charge and keeping it was; her name has escaped me for the moment, but she fully realized the importance of the trust. She told us that it had been handed down in her family from the time of Queen Elizabeth; that it had been delivered to her by her father, whose proud privilege it had been to have especial care of it, and that since he resigned the charge it had never been suffered to go out of her keeping. Others had aspired to its possession, amongst them members of the royal family itself; but she had maintained that, as it was originally delivered to her family, none had a better right than they to its care and custody. We were also conducted outside the house, or castle, and shown its beautiful and spacious grounds. Here the queen was requested to plant a tree. A silver spade with ebony handle was given to her, and she cheerfully complied with the request of our host. Near by there was one of the most perfect trees that could have been imagined; it was a beech with dark brown glossy leaves. It was celebrated far and near for its beauty, and was certainly one of the handsomest trees which it has ever fallen to my lot to behold.
Bidding our genial hosts adieu, we passed on to the next town, where we were handsomely entertained at another old castle to which the people of prominence in the neighborhood had been invited. Amongst these were the dean and his wife from the neighboring cathedral, and Mr. Colman, the celebrated manufacturer of mustard; he was also a member of parliament. The people of the district, hearing of our arrival, came in crowds to meet us, and were much interested in all that was going on. Amongst the guests at the Castle was an elderly lady who appeared to be particularly interested in the Anglican or Episcopal Church at Honolulu, and made special inquiries in regard to Mr. Gowan, one of the preachers there, who then was one of the youngest of our clergymen and quite a favorite, but who has since married and settled at Victoria, Vancouver's Island. The next place of interest visited was St. Peter's Church, the chimes of which were rung for our enjoyment. It was a new harmonic experience, and very delightful; although I noticed that the men who rang seemed to do it with the greatest effort, but in chiming one man is assigned to each bell-rope. The method of ringing the bells by playing upon keys, very much as one would produce the tones from a piano or organ, may be less fatiguing, but a more metallic sound is produced, and it is far less artistic and melodious to the lover of music.
After visiting many other points of interest, at all of which everything was done for our entertainment, we prepared for our departure to London, arriving there a few days prior to the 20th, the day of the celebration, which was also Monday. The whole city was in commotion in view of the coming great event, – the Jubilee of the sovereign. Rooms were assigned to us at the Alexandra, where there were many other members of the royal families of the distant world. Amongst these were Prince Komatzu of Japan; the Siamese Prince, brother of the King of Siam; the Prince of India; and the Prince of Persia. At other leading public houses were quartered the princes and princesses of the nations of Europe.
IMMEDIATELY after our arrival Queen Kapiolani sent messages of congratulations to Her Majesty Victoria, Queen of Great Britain and Empress of India; and arrangements were made for us to present our felicitations in person at Buckingham Palace on Monday at one o'clock in the afternoon. At twelve precisely of that day, Queen Victoria and her suite entered London, coming from Scotland where she had been residing for some time. The streets were thronged with people anxious to catch a glimpse of their beloved sovereign. Strange it seemed to me at the time to learn that many who had grown from youth to age in London during a whole lifetime had never seen their queen. Accompanied by her favorite daughter Beatrice and her husband, Prince Henry of Battenberg, the queen was driven to Buckingham Palace, preceded by a detachment of her celebrated Life Guards, outriders from the same regiment being detailed for each side of Her Majesty's carriage.
When the hour approached for us to go and meet her, an officer came from the palace; and Queen Kapiolani and I, attended by Colonel Iuakea and Mr. Synge, took our departure for the hall of reception. We were shown into a large room, where some of the princes had already arrived; and our first greeting came from the Premier, Lord Salisbury. He was then a fine-looking gentleman of imposing presence. He seemed to me to be some sixty-eight years of age, tall and large, with a slight stoop at the shoulders, but with fire and brilliancy in his eyes which spoke of an active mind. I could not help being impressed with the man, the scope of whose mind must command the vast widely spread problems of the government of the empire of Great Britain. Mr. Gladstone has been called "The Grand Old Man," yet this thought was strongly emphasized to me also in the presence of Lord Salisbury. He has always appeared to me to be the greater man of the two. If his rule has been less popular and more conservative, it has required no less devoted patriotism and lofty abilities. I attribute the present prosperity of the British Empire very largely to the consummate wisdom and stanch loyalty of Lord Salisbury.
HER MAJESTY QUEEN KAPIOLANI
While Lord Salisbury was entertaining with his conversation the royal guests, two ladies entered the room where we were, and courtesying to me, stood by my side a little in the rear of my chair. I hinted to them that the queen was sitting at my side; but they pleasantly acknowledged the information with a bow, and said that they were sent in to attend me, to which I responded with a salutation. While this was going on we saw a trifling occurrence, which, however, proved to us that human nature is about the same in the palace as in the cottage. Several of the ladies of the royal household passed through the hall, and stopped just long enough, as they went by the door, to get a peep at the strangers from over the sea. So it would appear that even royalty can forget strict etiquette under the impulse of feminine curiosity.
We were not kept waiting much longer; for Lord Lathom, accompanied by the Honorable Secretary Ponsonby, appeared, and led the way to the audience chamber. They carried their batons of office. Queen Kapiolani arose, greeted, and, with her suite, followed them. We were perhaps twenty-five feet apart as we entered the reception room, the queen attended by Colonel Iaukea, and I by the Hon. Mr. Synge, the two ladies-in-waiting following me. At the end of the hall there was an official whose business it was to open and shut the door of the audience chamber. As it was now open, he held his baton of office across it, but at the approach of Queen Kapiolani and Colonel Iaukea he removed it, and allowed them to pass in; then I entered alone, and our party stood in the presence of the British Queen.
The room was of very moderate size, with a sofa at one end on which Her Majesty sat; besides this there were only two chairs, all the other furniture, if ever there were any, having been removed. At a farther window stood H. R. H. the Duke of Connaught and T. R. H. the Prince and Princess Henry of Battenberg. Her Majesty Victoria greeted her sister sovereign, Kapiolani, with a kiss on each cheek, and then, turning to me, she kissed me once on the forehead; we were asked to be seated, the two queens sitting together on the sofa and engaging in conversation, which was translated by Colonel Iaukea. In the mean time I occupied one of the chairs. Queen Kapiolani expressed her congratulations on the great event of the day, and her gladness that the Jubilee found Her Majesty in good health, and added her expressions of hope that she might live many years to be a blessing to her subjects. The Queen received her good wishes with a like spirit of cordiality, thanking her for coming so far to see her, and then went on to speak with enthusiasm of the pleasure she had taken in meeting her husband, my brother, King Kalakaua. She said she had been much pleased with him, and had never forgotten his agreeable visit. In the mean time the Duke of Connaught was at my side, and we exchanged a few pleasant words. Next came the Princess Beatrice, who, after an expression of kindly interest, returned to her former station. Queen Victoria then entered into a little conversation with me, confining her remarks chiefly to educational matters, and asked me with some detail about the schools of the Hawaiian Islands. We then rose to make our adieus.
The two queens exchanged kisses as before, and the Queen of England again kissed me on the forehead; then she took my hand, as though she had just thought of something which she had been in danger of forgetting, and said, "I want to introduce to you my children;" and one by one they came forward and were introduced. After this I hesitated a moment to see if she had anything further to say to me, and finding that she had not, I courtesied to her and withdrew. By the time I had reached the door of the audience chamber, Queen Kapiolani had arrived at the farther end of the hall, and thinking I was alone, I hastened my steps to rejoin her; but soon I was conscious of the presence of the ladies-in-waiting by hearing the whispered words, "Their Majesties." On looking about me I saw at the door to my left two very fine-looking gentlemen standing side by side in the doorway, one in a gray suit and the other in black, both carrying canes. They acknowledged my presence by a most gallant salutation, as I slightly bowed to them in passing; then they resumed the subject of their conversation. These were His Majesty the King of Denmark, and His Imperial Highness the Crown Prince, father of the present Emperor of Germany. On finding myself again with my sister-in-law, we prepared to enter our carriage and return to our hotel. Thus terminated my first interview with one of the best of women and greatest of monarchs.
THAT evening an entertainment was given at the Foreign Office at which we were expected to be present. I expressed a wish on leaving the hotel to go in a carriage with my husband, which naturally placed the duty of escort to Queen Kapiolani on Colonel Iaukea and Hon. Mr. Synge. According to etiquette, by taking this step I was obliged to ride in one of the carriages belonging to the legation of Hawaii; and, as only the royal carriages could go to the principal entrance, the carriage in which I was would be obliged to present itself at the side entrance. But when we got there, and Colonel Boyd, our attendant, was asked whose carriage it was, he replied, "It is the carriage of the Crown Princess of Hawaii." Then the officer said that we had made a mistake by coming to that entrance. However, we passed in, and I was conducted to the waiting-room which had been assigned to the royal ladies for their exclusive use, while my husband and Colonel Boyd were taken to the room assigned to the use of the generals.
In the room I entered, what was my surprise to see my sister-in-law, Queen Kapiolani, standing almost alone and unattended, as though she were at a loss what to do next. Near me was a fine lady, a Grand Duchess from one of the small German principalities. She had entered the room about the same moment with me; and comprehending the situation at once, and knowing that I spoke English, while the queen did not, she turned to me and said; "Why does not the queen sit down, so that we may all be seated?" Upon receiving from me a hint in our native language, the queen complied with this wish, and we were all soon at our ease. Then there entered several gentlemen of royal blood, – the King of Hanover, and princes and princesses of European countries, – and we adjourned to the grand reception room. We were ushered into a large hall, well filled with ladies of rank, and all of them most magnificently dressed to do honor to the occasion.
It would seem that each of these had brought out the family heirlooms in precious stones. There were duchesses with shining tiaras, marchionesses with coronets of flashing stones, noble ladies with costly necklaces or emerald ear-drops, little women who seemed almost bowed down under lofty circlets of diamonds over their brows, tall women bearing proudly off their adornment of stones of priceless value. I have never seen such a grand display of valuable gems in my life. There was such a profusion of brilliant and handsome jewels before my eyes, that to compute its worth would be to lose one's self in a maze of confusing calculation. Yet there was amidst the shining throng one young lady, tall and of commanding presence, whose sole ornament was a single glittering star fixed in her hair. It shone forth more brightly, attracted my gaze more quickly, and its elegant simplicity excited my admiration above all others. She was a lady of high rank, and it is a matter of regret to me that I did not learn her name.
While conversing with some of the duchesses who advanced to speak with me, Lord Salisbury made his appearance; and approaching Queen Kapiolani, offered her his arm, leading the way to the centre of the room, my husband and I following. Very soon we were joined by H. R. H. the Duke of Connaught, with Lady Salisbury. As this couple came up I waited a moment with my husband that they might pass in front of us; but the prince motioned to me to assume the precedence, and seeing him pause for us, we passed on, while he and his fair companion followed in our wake. Passing thus through the crowds, who made way as we approached, we were conducted to a side room, where refreshments were served. Here Lord Salisbury placed the queen on his right, and I was notified to be seated on his left, my husband standing behind my chair. The Duke of Connaught addressed him, and asked him to be seated, using as the form of salutation the title of governor. At first Governor Dominis declined, but on being urged by the prince, complied with his polite invitation. This is worthy of mention, because on this occasion the position of honor in the very centre of the room was assigned to our party. On the left of my husband was Lady Salisbury, and by her side the Duke of Connaught; then the Maharajah, Prince of Indore; and so on. The moments sped by very agreeably in general conversation; but as the Duke of Connaught glanced across the apartment, his eye caught sight of Lady Aylesbury, who was at one of the more remote tables. The prince very politely arose, went across the room, and greeted her most gallantly, informing us as he did so, that she was the only one of the ladies of rank now living who had been present at the coronation of his royal mother, whose Jubilee we were then celebrating. She was an elderly lady, with little curls each side of her brow; and this act of courtesy and gallantry to her impressed me as one of the prettiest and pleasantest things seen that evening. From her cordiality to the prince, I doubt not that it was highly appreciated by Lady Aylesbury. After we rose from the tables, we mingled in social conversation with the guests of the evening for a few minutes, and then retiring from the rooms returned to the hotel.
ON the following, or great day of the Jubilee, we were to be present in the morning at the historic church of Westminster Abbey; and the hour of half-past ten had been appointed for General Dominis and Colonel Boyd to take their positions there. Our party, consisting of the members of royal families, left at eleven o'clock, the procession being led by the Japanese Prince; then followed the Prince of Persia, the Prince of Siam, and then the Indian Prince.
Succeeding these came the Queen of the Hawaiian Islands with myself, and to us was accorded the most unusual honor of an escort drawn from the Life Guards of Her Majesty Queen Victoria. This was scarcely expected, but we were told that it had been especially granted to the Queen and Crown Princess of Hawaii. When we spoke of the high appreciation we felt of this and all the attentions we had received, we were assured in response, that, as we had come such a long distance to do honor to the occasion, Her Majesty had thought that the least she could do was to provide for us special honors. We were given one of the queen's own carriages, with horses and drivers, during our stay in London. Our drive to Westminster Abbey was a short one. We passed through crowds and crowds of people, both sides of the street being thronged, but there was perfect order; besides which, the Life Guardsmen were on each side of our carriages. Detachments from the British navy, and members of the metropolitan police, were stationed at every point. But it was a happy, good-natured crowd (eleven millions, so I heard it estimated), assembled in the great city of London to congratulate the sovereign on her semi-centennial anniversary. As we passed from the Alexandra to the beautiful Abbey, cheering could be heard on every side; the fronts of the houses were a living mass of humanity. Benches were placed along their fronts, on which the people stood or sat, and every party that passed received enthusiastic salutations.
On reaching the doors of the Abbey, our party was met by Lord Lathom and Sir Henry Ponsonby, as representatives of Queen Victoria; and by them we were conducted to the seats reserved for our use. Colonel Iaukea and Hon. Mr. Synge disappeared at once as though swallowed up in the vast crowd which had been gathering in the place since the early hours of the morning. As the people arrived, they were arranged by the ushers in charge according to their rank. As delegation after delegation came in, each was quietly and properly assigned to its appropriate station.
In the centre of the great edifice, there was a raised platform or dais, to which we were conducted. Soon after us a most prominent party arrived, and were also seated on the dais. We found them to be the kings, queens, princes, and princesses from several of the European countries. There was a little lady who made her appearance accompanied by her husband, who was blind; she seated him on a bench back of that we occupied; then she proceeded to adjust his necktie, she pulled down his coat and smoothed it out, and arranged other parts of his uniform to suit her own taste. Finally, when his appearance seemed to her satisfactory, she left him, and coming towards us took a seat directly between Queen Kapiolani and myself. This lady was none other than the Grand Duchess of Mecklenburg-Strelitz, whose royal cousin, Queen Victoria, was celebrating the Jubilee of the day. On the left of my sister-in-law sat the Queen of the Belgians.
While we were awaiting the opening ceremonies, the grand duchess turned to me and said, "Parlez vous Français?" Upon my response in the negative, she addressed to me a similar question, only this time asking if I spoke English; to which I replied, "Yes, a little." Then, much to my amusement, she motioned to the princesses opposite to us that her companion understood English, and we were very soon in a most agreeable and animated conversation on the topics of the day. Soon the band began the grand and solemn strains of "God Save the Queen," and all but a few arose under the impression that it announced the entrance of Her Majesty Queen Victoria. The little duchess inquired of me why I was rising, and without awaiting a reply volunteered the information, that the anthem was probably in honor of the arrival of some members of the royal family. And this proved to be the fact; for almost immediately there appeared a company of ladies, these being the daughters, granddaughters, and daughters-in-law of Queen Victoria. They advanced, and took their seats on the left side of the dais.
Their entrance was followed by another blast from the bugles and a further measure of the national anthem, to which there responded a company of the sons and grandsons of the reigning sovereign, led by His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales. These took their seats on the right of the dais, and thus we were surrounded by the royal household. After all was tranquil, there followed a final flourish of the trumpets; and for the third time the band gave us "God Save the Queen," and at this salutation there appeared Her Majesty Queen Victoria, preceded by the Archbishop of Canterbury and four other bishops. Slowly they proceeded to the stations which had been reserved for them, in the centre of the great church at the end farthest from the people, but quite near to where I sat, so that I could watch them to my perfect satisfaction.
Queen Victoria ascended the dais, and advanced to her seat at its very centre, where there was a plain-looking, old-fashioned armchair, said to have once belonged to St. Peter himself. She stood at a spot just opposite to this seat. All the rest of us had risen, and remained standing during her approach. Before seating herself, she made a little courtesy, which salutation was returned by all those who had awaited her coming from the opposite dais or platform. She was simply attired in a neat, black dress, wearing a bonnet very small and unobtrusive, while about her neck she wore a handsome necklace composed of single stone diamonds. After she was in her seat, and the rest of us had followed her example, the religious services were begun, and most impressive they seemed.
The Archbishop of Canterbury opened the ceremony with prayer. Then followed the Te Deum; and the music must have had an especial charm of tender regret for the queen, for it was the composition of the Prince Consort, her deceased husband. Thus the grand pageant of religious worship proceeded; and while uprose the prayers of the vast assembly, involving the blessing of the Almighty upon the head of the great British Empire, a gleam of God's sunshine penetrated through one of the windows, and finding its way from the casement across the grand temple, illuminated with its radiance the bowed head of the royal worshipper. It was a beautiful emblem of divine favor, and reminded me of the coincidence of which mention has been made that occurred at the moment of the coronation of my brother in Hawaii.
The inspiring anthems, as they were so grandly and harmoniously rendered by the great choir, lifted all hearts up to the Ruler of the Universe, and the solemn tones of the great organ hushed every thought inconsistent with the devout worship of the occasion. When this part of the ceremony came to a close, Her Gracious Majesty received the homage of her daughters and granddaughters, tenderly kissing each one in turn. They responded by a respectful kiss on the royal hand. The sons and grandsons next went through a similar manifestation of affection and respect, after which the procession began to form for leaving the Abbey. Its order in departing was exactly the reverse of that at the entrance, those preceding who had been last to arrive; finally, the last of the lords and ladies, dukes and duchesses, princes and princesses, kings and queens, were out of doors and on the way back to Buckingham Palace. The crowds had never left the streets and sidewalks, but had remained in position so as to get another view as we passed along. The sea of heads on both sides of the royal party had not diminished perceptibly by so much as one individual, the gay decorations were all in place, and flags and streamers floated from every point. Never could there have been a day when London was more lavish of its holiday attire.
When we arrived at Buckingham Palace, I was waited on by the Duke of Edinburgh, whilst Queen Kapiolani was under the escort of the heir to the British throne, the Prince of Wales. In the banquet hall was a long table through the centre, which took up the entire length of the room; this was assigned exclusively to the visiting kings and queens from every part of the world, many of whom had travelled long distances to be present at this Jubilee. Two smaller tables were attached at each end of the long one, and these were set apart for the princes and princesses who were also the guests of the nation. To one of these tables, and towards its centre, my escort, H. R. H. Prince Alfred, Duke of Edinburgh, and now of Saxe-Coburg, conducted me, and gave me a seat; on my right was the present Emperor of Germany, who proved to be a most sociable neighbor, and an agreeable conversationalist, so that we kept up quite an animated flow of words. Truthfully speaking, I think the Duke of Edinburgh was not quite easy in his mind. He was the Lord High Admiral, and was naturally thinking of the long line of officers and men which had been drawn up to do honor to the royal visitors, and who could only be relieved from guard duty by his order. He excused himself to us a few minutes, probably to give some preliminary command to this effect, but soon returned, and still appeared as though he were anxious that the lunch and its ceremonies should be over. I suppose it was the natural uneasiness of the sailor, and a sense of the responsibility he felt for the comfort, and release from duty, of those under his authority.
During the course of the lunch, Prince William of Prussia asked me if I recognized a gentleman sitting opposite to us. I responded that I thought I did, and went on to say, that, to my remembrance it was Prince Henry of Prussia. He said that I was correct, and complimented me warmly on my strength of memory. This was the same prince who had once visited our Islands many years before this date, and whose delightful visit was unexpectedly shortened by the death of his brother Waldemar.
The naval forces were drawn up in a line a short distance from the palace, and as soon as possible after the repast they received the thanks of their royal commander; the officers and the men were assured of the queen's appreciation of their loyalty and devotion, and then all were permitted to retire, each body to its own vessel. I am confident that not a man there was more relieved at the change than the sailor-prince himself, who then became more animated, and more like the duke of whom I had such delightful reminiscences when he visited me in Hawaii, – as I have said in a previous chapter of these memoirs.
From the banquet hall Her Majesty, followed by her royal guests, adjourned to a larger room in the palace, commanding a fine view of the streets and squares about us. Here from the windows we watched the marines and the naval forces as they filed past on their way back to the ships from whence they had come. They were a superb body of men, of whom their royal commander, and indeed all England, might well be proud.
After they had marched away, we were shown into a side room where were displayed the presents which had been sent to the queen in recognition of this her jubilee year. They were too many and too varied for me to attempt anything like an enumeration; yet there were one or two pieces which I will mention. Hawaii had sent a unique frame placed on an easel, in the centre of which was an embroidered piece, with the letters "V. R." worked in the rare royal feathers, while the frame itself was studded with diamonds. Then there was a very perfect representation of St. George and the Dragon in the traditional form, but wrought of gold. This had been presented by the Crown Prince of Prussia, husband to the Princess Royal of England, the daughter of Queen Victoria, who was soon after this epoch left a widow by her husband's untimely death. At present she is the Dowager Empress of Germany. I now learn that her afflictions have been increased by a loss sustained in the recent conflagration at the Paris charitable bazaar, a calamity which put more than one household in Europe of royal connections into deepest mourning. After spending some time with us in the examination of her presents, Her Majesty Victoria retired. This was the signal for us to do likewise, so one by one we withdrew to our respective hotels.
As we drove homeward, and passed over the route by which we had come, scarcely a man or woman of all that vast crowd which had congregated there so recently was to be seen; the avenues of travel seemed to have been deserted. Yet the throng had dispersed in so orderly a manner that there had been no confusion, and no accidents were ever reported to mar the joy of the Jubilee.
WE were all too much fatigued to think of going out again that evening. Entertainment after entertainment followed in an endless variety, and on too grand a scale to think of enumerating them all, or even of mentioning the many ways in which the royal family of England showed its hospitality towards us. Amongst those who attended me personally, besides the Duke of Edinburgh, I must not forget to notice attentions from Prince Louis of Battenberg and the Grand Duke Sergius of Russia. One evening, after a grand reception, a ball was given at the palace, to which all royalty went to pay their respects to the first gentleman of England, the Prince of Wales, and his amiable wife.
Queen Kapiolani and I were conducted to seats on the dais, where the Princess of Wales, Princess Louise of Lorne, and other members of Her Majesty's household, were seated. It was an excellent point from which to see the dancing, which soon began. While watching the dance, I happened to glance down to the farther end of the hall, and saw the Marquis of Lorne bend his arm cordially about that of my husband, Governor Dominis, and pace to and fro with him about the hall, the two gentlemen seemingly much interested in each other as they engaged in prolonged and pleasant conversation. The entertainment went gayly on until a late hour, and as usual the first movement to retire was made on the part of the royal family; after which the guests began to take leave of each other, and we returned to our hotel.
There was one day set apart during the Jubilee for a Masonic Celebration; and from the grand crowd of visitors assembled in London to do honor to the occasion, invitations were sent to all members of that fraternity. The response was general, and at eleven o'clock of the day appointed the visiting brethren met at Prince Albert Hall. The arrangements were carried to such perfection that each person was conducted without the least confusion to a seat which had been assigned to him. My husband, Governor Dominis, wearing the regalia to which his rank as a Mason of the thirty-third degree entitled him, upon reaching the entrance indicated by the terms of the invitation he had received, found an usher in attendance to escort him to his place. After exchanging the signs and tokens of mutual recognition, he passed into the hall, and his guide conducted him through the vast assembly of the brotherhood. He had not the least idea as to what part of the chamber he was assigned, but followed in the footsteps of the gentleman in whose care he had been intrusted.
Soon they passed in front of the dais, or raised platform, commanding a view of the noble audience. On this was seated the Grand Master of the assembled representatives of the Freemasonry of the world, none other than H. R. H., the Prince Royal, Albert Edward of Wales. As Governor Dominis passed in front of the Grand Master, still ignorant of his own position, Masonic salutations were exchanged; and much to his surprise my husband found himself conducted up to the platform, where on the right of the Prince of Wales the third seat had been assigned to him. His astonishment was succeeded by emotions of pride. Governor Dominis was always a most unassuming man; not at all eager to put himself forward, never presuming in the least to encroach on the rights or privileges of others. But when he found himself thus placed in one of the highest and most honorable positions, it was undoubtedly enough to make his bosom glow. But he valued the honor as a Mason more than as a man; for it was the recognition of his place in an organization whose bond of union was that of brotherly love, and whose ancient and noble rites these high-born or royally connected persons from every part of the globe had assembled to celebrate.
In that great assembly over which the royal prince presided, and into whose upturned faces my husband had the joy of looking, were more than ten thousand men of the different degrees of the order. Prayer was offered by one of the grand chaplains; and the princely Grand Master then rose and initiated the ceremonies by giving out the national anthem, "God Save the Queen", which was sung by all present with an ardor and fervor seldom excelled. United in their bond of affection and brotherly kindness, their hearts were also filled with the spirit of the Jubilee which had allowed them to meet in this grand assembly. It was an occasion to fill all present with a sense of its grandeur and importance; and when my husband returned to me his feelings and sentiments were too profound for expression, too lasting to allow him ever to forget. The usual forms and ceremonies of a Masonic gathering, known and understood only by those of the fraternity itself, had been, I was told, most impressively rendered, and gave great satisfaction to all.
My husband was always a most conscientious Mason, and fulfilled to the letter his duties as a friend and a brother to his order. Many a charitable deed towards the poor of the fraternity was done by him of which no one ever spoke, because no one knew anything about them at the time. Large sums of money have been contributed by him for the purpose of extricating brethren of the Masonic order from financial or other difficulties. These amounts were rarely returned to him; perhaps he had not expected that they would be paid. At any rate, nothing was said of them; but when his papers fell into my hands for examination at his death, they were disclosed to me, and I recognized what a great amount of good had been done, and what a true and faithful Free Mason Governor Dominis had been his life long. At this time the parties he had assisted had left Hawaii, and possibly had retained no thought of him or their obligation; yet a good action is never lost, and his many and beautiful deeds of generosity are precious to my remembrance, and remain a source of consolation to me to this day.
ON one of the days when we were free of other engagements, the party of Queen Kapiolani took carriages, and drove out to the residence of Lady Aberdeen, where Mr. Gladstone was staying for a few days. We were received most cordially by himself and his good wife out under the trees on the ground. The weather was favorable, it was a lovely afternoon for social pleasure, and everything was done to make us feel at home in the society of the "Grand Old Man". As I remember his appearance, he was a tall, large-framed man, with broad, high forehead, dark piercing eyes, and a nose which was the most prominent feature of a striking and intellectual face, – certainly a countenance and a presence, once seen, not easily to be forgotten. When he spoke, there was a serious thoughtfulness in his remarks, and words of world-wide significance seemed as ready with him as those of common import are with any other. There were a number of visitors claiming the honor of an interview; he listened patiently to any one's questions, but directed his replies to all those by whom he was surrounded. Mrs. Gladstone was a tall, stylish woman of rather advanced years, of dignified mien and intelligent countenance; she stood by her husband's side during most of the time while he was conversing with his visitors, and from her attentive manner one could not but receive the thought that in the eventful life of the great statesman she must have been a valuable counsellor and a sympathetic confidant.
One Sunday soon after this interview, Mr. And Mrs. R. H. Armstrong called at our hotel, and took Governor Dominis and myself, attended by Colonel Boyd, on a little outing in their good company. Mrs. Newman, and her daughter, now Mrs. John Fowler, were also with us. Arriving at the railroad station, we entered the train, by which we were conveyed some distance out of town to a pleasant place called Richmond, situated on the banks of the river Thames.
There we were conducted to a house exhibited to us as the type of an English inn. I was much interested in the edifice; for I had always read from my earliest days glorious descriptions of English inns, where the pleasures of the chase culminated, and to whose doors the trophies of the hunters were brought. But on entering this house there was a little bit of disappointment, or at least wonder, as I surveyed its contracted quarters. The rooms were low-studded and of small size, so that probably no more than fifteen persons could have found accommodations therein. I could have almost reached the ceiling, had I stretched forth my arm and pointed it upward. Then, where were the banquet halls? Surely the inns of which the English novelists had told me must have been on a grander scale than this one to which I was conducted!
From the inn we went on board a steamer, which the forethought of Mr. Armstrong had secured for our comfort, and started out on an excursion which was to introduce a novel experience; for, after steaming up the river a short distance, we came to a lock; to pass it there were in waiting many other water-craft of all kinds, steamers and tow-boats, little vessels propelled by sails, or even small boats by oars and poles. When the gates of the lock were opened, that, and that only, was the moment when these could pass through; so there was such a scrambling in the water about us, such a jostling, such a pushing ahead to see who would get within the lock first, or, more important, that their boat should not be left in the outer waters when the gates closed. It was a lively contest, and often it appeared as though some of the craft would be hopelessly swamped; but the affair passed without accident, for indeed, with all their rivalry, everybody was good-natured, and the occupants of the boats took the matter very cheerfully when passed by a competitor.
But there was one phase of the exhibition which excited my attention, not to say surprise and wonder. This was the indifference of the men in the smaller boats, who lounged in the stern, cigar in mouth, book or paper in hand, while the poor girls with poles exerted their strength to the utmost to shove their boats along into the waters of the lock. Men smoking or reading while the women were doing all the work! Taking their ease, while from those called the weaker sex came the exertions necessary to get the boat into her place amongst the crowd of others. It was not a pleasant picture, nor did it speak of gallantry. I had never seen anything like it.
We all finally got through the gates of the lock, and steamed up the river until we came to a landing, where our attention was attracted by a very pretty sight; this was a house-boat, very nice in appearance, with an upper and a lower veranda, the upper being trimmed with curtains of a red material edged with white. Through the convenient folding-doors, which were opened above, we caught view of a large apartment, which I took to be the reception-room, and the lower room, also thrown open, was probably the dining-room. As we watched this neat home upon the water, there appeared a small skiff rowed by a man, but on the seat in the stern was another occupant, – a pretty little lady clad entirely in one prevailing color. On her head she wore a red hat; the parasol she held over it was red; she wore also red gloves and red shoes; but her fair face and golden hair made a contrast most lovely and striking with the tints of her costume and surroundings; and as she turned to look at us, the laughing blue eyes, which peeped out from under her rosy ensemble, made her indeed the picture of a charming Witch of the Thames. We watched her until she reached her house-boat, and disappeared from our gaze.
On landing, our party wended its way to another of the English inns. It had attracted our admiration from the water as it nestled prettily under the trees by which it was surrounded. On arriving we found a charming place. The long and well-kept walks of gravel and pebbles encouraging us to stray into its grounds; and one by one we followed this inclination, while Mrs. Newman and some others, impressed with the same desire, climbed a neighboring hill. It was not a very difficult one, nor at all high; but it was a conspicuous object, because covered with tempting verdure and dotted with flowers, chiefly of the species of the rhododendron, whose vari-colored blossoms stretched out, all over the hillsides, in charming profusion.
But the wanderers were soon called to return, and the party reunited, because an omnibus had driven up by which we were to be taken to Clifton House, an estate owned by the Duke of Westminster. A short drive brought us to its doors, where we were welcomed, and shown through the apartments. This was nearer to my ideal of an English country-house; for here were lofty ceilings, and a spacious banquet hall, opening out on a lawn of richest and most luxuriant green. Looking out over this verdant foreground could be seen far away in the distance the blue line of the River Thames, winding in and out through the forest trees which rose along its border. The view was most beautiful, and I could well believe that in the past it had been the lordly estate of the Duke of Buckingham. With the aid of a lifelike portrait of a noble lady, which from its place on the walls of the manor looked silently down, I could picture to myself the days in which she had been the charming hostess of the reception-room in which we stood. I could see her doing the honors of this beautiful residence, and making guests welcome to her handsome estate, receiving the grand lords and lovely ladies who met there after the fatigues and excitements of the chase. The element of sport, and the thirst for pleasure, largely influenced the customs of that former epoch in English country life; and yet, with all their gayety, they were able to provide for the sustenance and happiness of a large number of retainers and tenantry without enormous expense. For these, their people, lived under their lords and mistresses with loving submission and loyal devotion, understanding the duties of their station in life, and therewith content; they looked to them for their maintenance and kind consideration, and asked for no more. The relation between master and retainer was one of love on both sides, of pure affection for a trusted and faithful vassal, of devotion and desire to please from the man to the master.
But at the present day all this has gone, the changes introduced by an entirely different civilization have made the former life impossible; the laws of trade, the demands of mercantile life, the advancement of commerce, of which London is the grand centre, have effected a revolution, which has entirely overthrown the relationship existing at other times between the country gentleman and his retainers. Now the lord of the manor rises early, and hurries away to the city, where important matters at the bank, or the shipping-office, or the lawyer's desk, are waiting for him; the places on his old-time estate, which long ago were filled with trusty retainers, are desolate, and often large halls stand permanently vacant. Walls are bare of ornament or picture because there is no one to keep up the establishment. Is England better and happier for the extinction of a style of life read of in history but not to-day existing? At least, by such souvenirs as this manor house, are pictures brought back to one's mind of a past, that had much in it of sufficient worth to awaken emotions of sadness that it has gone forever.
We again boarded the little steamer which had awaited our return to her decks; and when we were comfortably settled, she steamed away up the river. On the picturesque banks of the Thames we saw, as we passed, many pretty pictures of modern life. The water, too, was alive with moving craft, pleasure-boats and toiling steamers, while at several points were stationed bands of music, the strains of which came softly over the waters to our ears. All these sights and sounds added to the pleasure of our outing; and yet most of the actors in this vivid pageant were, doubtless, only intent on the business of making a livelihood. We went about as far as the depth of the water allowed the steamer to ascend, and then turning, steamed back to the landing. I must not forget to notice that our enjoyment and understanding of the places we passed was increased by the presence of two entertaining young men of leisure invited as guests. They were strangers to us, but contributed much to our pleasure and information. One was a Mr. Skinner, but the name of his associate has for the moment escaped my memory. Disembarking from our steamer, we entered the cars, and were soon again at our hotel, and with the added happiness of having stored away the memory of a most delightful day on the celebrated River Thames, as well as of Mr. And Mrs. Armstrong's charming hospitality.
THE final entertainment, given to the party of royal visitors from all quarters of the globe, was a garden party, tendered by Her Majesty Queen Victoria, at which she herself and all her good and beautiful children were present. Punctually at the appointed hour the Queen of England, attended by the heir apparent to the throne, H. R. H, the Prince of Wales, accompanied by the princess, his lovely wife, made their appearance; following them came the other members of the royal family. The procession moved along the gravelled walks of the palace garden, led by the great and good lady whose jubilee year we were celebrating. It was made up of kings and queens, princes and princesses, from most of the reigning families of the world; on each side of us as we passed stood the crowds of eager and respectful observers; the greensward in the gardens at each side of the walk was a solid mass of people. These were of many ranks and conditions in life, and principally persons of note. Among them were well-known actors and celebrated actresses; naval officers, and other holders of official positions; representatives of almost every class over whom the good queen rules. Here and there, as we advanced, were heard strains of music, tents having been erected for the accommodation of the bands which were in service for the day. I think there were four of these at different points in our march, each composed of the best and most skilful musicians that could be enlisted for the occasion.
We finally paused before two tents which had been assigned to the party. Into one of these entered Her Majesty Victoria, no one going into her tent, excepting only the Prince of Wales. Even the princess, his wife, accompanied the other ladies into the tent which had been provided for our reception. Queen Kapiolani and I had the honor of being directly with this accomplished lady, while her husband, with a son's devotion such as he has always so commendably shown, had gone to attend his royal mother. Close to us was a table sumptuously furnished with all that taste could desire; but however attractive to the eye, I noticed its viands were not liberally consumed.
As we had passed along in the light of day, I had had an opportunity to impress upon my mind the appearance of the Queen of England, and to look at her as a woman, under circumstances far more favorable for permanent impression than in some of the pageants where she had officially appeared. She was sixty-eight years of age at this time, and seemed to be in the best of health. In walking she carried a little ebony cane on which she scarcely leaned. She had been represented to me as short, stout, and fat, and not at all graceful in appearance; but I did not at all agree with the truth of this representation. She was a well-proportioned, gracious, queenly woman. I would not call her handsome; yet she had a kind, winning expression on her face which gave evidence of the gentle spirit within. This was to be our final interview, and the afternoon with its pleasures soon passed away; we bade adieu to our royal hostess, wishing her with all our hearts many, many more years of prosperity as a sovereign, and content and peace as the woman whose name is respected and loved wherever the sun shines throughout the wide, wide world.
Returning to our hotel, we received news which changed at once the current of our thoughts. This was of the revolutionary movement, inaugurated by those of foreign blood, or American birth, in the Hawaiian Islands during our absence. It was indeed a case of marked ingratitude; for this rebellion against constituted authority had been brought about by the very persons for whose prosperity His Majesty Kalakaua had made such exertions, and by those to whom he had shown the greatest favors. On receipt of the intelligence, we decided that, instead of continuing our proposed tour, and visiting the continent of Europe, we would return at once to Honolulu. Mr. and Mrs. Armstrong proved themselves faithful friends, and through their kindness all was speedily arranged for the return voyage. They were ably assisted in their hospitable work by Mr. and Mrs. Sigismond Hoffnung and their son, Mr. Sidney Hoffnung. The last-named had been chargé d'affaires at Hawaii at one time in place of Mr. Abraham Hoffnung, who left him in that office during his own absence in Australia. The Hoffnungs while we were in London gave a grand entertainment and dinner in honor of the visit of Queen Kapiolani, and we then had the pleasure of meeting Lord Roseberry and his wife. This lady was a daughter of one of the Rothschilds, a large woman of fine appearance and commanding presence, and of a style which made her noticeable in company. Then she wore around her neck a string of single pearls which was a wonder in itself, for I was told that its value was about three hundred thousand dollars. We had the pleasure of meeting her again at an afternoon tea, which passed off very charmingly, given to us at her residence, at which there were many interesting people.
But after the news we received from home, our minds would not be at rest to further enjoy the kind attentions which had been tendered us during the month of our stay; so we bade adieu to the beautiful city of London, and took our departure from Liverpool. There we parted with Mr. and Mrs. Armstrong, and went on board the Servia, Captain McKay, of the Cunard Line, by which steamer we made a pleasant passage of nine days to New York. Resting only enough to get our accommodations on the overland train, in six days more we were in San Francisco; and six days' farther travel, this time by water, found us nearing our home. The weather on our westward way had been excessively hot; for it was midsummer, and we had suffered some inconvenience from the heat in crossing the continent. Our own climate is so equal in temperature that we feel extremes of heat even more than excessive cold.
As our vessel was entering the harbor of Honolulu, a smaller steamer came off to meet us; and being made fast alongside, we were transferred, and at once made for the shore. Here we found the people assembled to give us a royal welcome. The wharves were lined with throngs of men and women. The shipping, too, had been utilized for points of observation, and the decks and rigging of all the vessels were filled with those eager to watch the coming of the royal party. And yet, mingled with all the joy felt at our safe return, there was an undercurrent of sadness as of a people who had known with us a crushing sorrow. There were traces of tears on the cheeks of many of our faithful retainers, which we noticed, and of which we knew the meaning, as we passed by. They knew, and we knew, although no word was spoken, the changes which had been forced upon the king.
We were received by the members of the new cabinet of the king, by name Mr. Godfrey Brown, Minister of Foreign Affairs; Mr. L. A. Thurston, Minister of the Interior; Mr. W. I. Green, Minister of Finance; Mr. C. W. Ashford, Attorney-General, – all men of foreign birth; while of the ministry directly preceding, three members had been native Hawaiians.
Mr. Brown shook us warmly by the hands, and attended us to the royal carriage which had been waiting; and then, accompanied by the royal staff of His Majesty, we were quickly driven past the assembled multitudes to Iolani Palace, where King Kalakaua – my brother and the husband of Queen Kapiolani – was prepared to receive us. He appeared bright, and glad to welcome us back; yet we could see on his countenance traces of the terrible strain through which he had passed, and evidences of the anxiety over the perilous position, although this was only the commencement of the troubles preparing for our family and nation.
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