Make Weliweli ma Kalihiwai, Kauai / Terrible Death at Kalihiwai, Kauai

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Make Weliweli ma Kalihiwai, Kauai / Terrible Death at Kalihiwai, Kauai

A most terrible thing befell some weoweo fishermen at the shore by the cliff of Kapukamoi, Kalihi Kai, at 10 in the morning last Saturday, the 8th of September.  There is a place where the sea narrows between the pāhoehoe and opens below the cliff.  The length of this sea pool is perhaps 25 fathoms, nearly 3 fathoms wide, and the water in the pool is 4 or 5 fathoms deep.  Many weoweo had gathered in that spot during those days, so many people went there to fish.  On Friday, the 7th, an increasing number of people had come to fish there and to have a festive time under the  slightly protruding cliff, and that outward angle of the cliff made a grotto at the base of the cliff.  If the cliff had broken off that day, there would have been many people killed instantly, but such was not the intention of the creator of man.

And if it had collapsed at 8 on that Saturday, there were many people there at the time.

As the sun became hot, people left little by little, until at 10, there were just a few people remaining, sitting at the edge of that pool. Then suddenly the protruding cliff broke off at the eastern side of the pool, and the cliff completely collapsed.  Flying rocks from the western edge of the break pummeled and tossed 7 of the fishermen into that deep pool amidst the flying rocks, and they disappeared.  Three men there barely survived, but were injured by rocks, while a few people who were standing away from there escaped completely.  Those who escaped were busy helping the wounded, while some people ran off to summon the people of the village of Kalihiwai, and there was a great upset among the people of that place.  Wailing was soon heard from friends of those who had died!  As we stood on the site of the amazing event, we were terrified.  We said to ourselves, “Jehovah has come and displayed his might!”

One body was found that night.  On Sunday and Monday, 5 more bodies were found, and one other was completely lost.

Here are the names of the deceased.

Kukuiehu — a wood cutter from Opupahi.

Pa‘akea and ‘Aimo‘o — Contract workers for Mr. Low.

Kimo — A child from the English School at Wai‘oli.

Kuaiki (m), Henry (m), and Ke‘alohi (f) from the English School of Kalihi.

Here are the people who were injured.

Momona, Kaho‘omana, and Mauwele.  They are contract workers for Mr. Low.

Here are the people who escaped because they were standing away at the time.

Samuela (father of Kimo), Kamaka (m), Aukai (f), Akoni‘ia (f).

This crumbling of the cliff face is amazing, for there had been no rain during those days to make the soil above the cliff soft and cause it to break apart.  On consideration, it seems as though God allowed this terrible thing to happen there so that skeptical people would be made thoughtful.  This is because Kalihiwai and Hanalei are renowned for the skepticism of the people, and it is said that the people fished at that pool on the previous Sundays.  Perhaps because people ignore the word of God, thus this tragedy came about so that they would heed and consider.

Foreigners are being summoned as well as Hawaiians these days.  Because on Monday of that week a haole died, having been killed by a Hawaiian in Hanalei with his digging stick in the cane field.  McIntyre was the name of the haole, an overseer for Hiram. 

If God allowed these tragedies to happen because of the haole people and the Hawaiians ignoring the commandments of Jehovah in the Bible, then they should heed this terrifying voice that is calling, and mind God’s will.  This is what is right for all people hearing about this terrible thing, that they should think, and should heed this great voice that calls out, so that skepticism is ended, and so that each one may prepare to meet with his Maker.                                                                   

E. J.

Wai‘oli, September 11, 1866.



(click image for original Hawaiian text)

Ka Nupepa Kuokoa, September 22, 1866
, Book: 5, Number: 38, Page: 3