Thelma Genevieve Parish, a.k.a. Sister Parish, was born in 1918. She descended from prominent families in the history of Hawai‘i, and shared generational ties to the ‘ili of Pu‘uloa in Honouliuli Ahupua‘a. She was educated as an anthropologist, and became a Catholic nun serving for 50 years as a teacher and school administrator with the Order of Sacred Hearts. Sister Parish was a lifelong student of history and until her passing in 2004, she was working on a manuscript of Hawaiian history. Unfortunately her work has been left incomplete.
Below are two interviews conducted by Kepā and Onaona Maly with Aunty Arline Wainaha Puulei Brede-Eaton. Aunty Arline grew up in Pu‘uloa and has been an incomparable resource. The first interview was done in 1997 and the second was in 2011.
Recording oral history interviews is an important part of the historical review process. The experiences conveyed through interviews are personal; also, the narratives are rich and more animated than those that may be typically found in reports that are purely academic or archival in nature—the personal narratives tend to present modern audiences with descriptions of cultural values, practices, and transitions in the landscape. Thus, through the process of conducting oral history interviews, things are learned that are often overlooked in other forms of documentation.
The records of the Māhele are the earliest and most detailed records of Honouliuli, in their documentation of native residents—those people who were the survivors of their ancestors, and those whose iwi (remains) were buried upon the plains (kulāıwi). Following a detailed review of all the Māhele records from Honouliuli Ahupua‘a, at least 208 resident names were found. These names, often modernized surnames, are the people who lived upon, cared for, and were sustained by the ‘āina and kai lawai‘a of Honouliuli.
Pu‘uloa, the land area of Honouliuli, and the lochs of the harbor played a major role in Hawai‘i’s political history and eventual loss of sovereignty. The narratives under Related Documents below take readers through the decades of turmoil in development of sugar plantations, trade agreements, the “Reciprocity Treaty” (1875 & 1884), and eventual military control of Pearl Harbor and large tracts of Honouliuli Ahupua‘a by the United States.
The epic tradition of the goddess Pele and her youngest sister, Hi‘iaka-i-ka-poli-o-Pele, a.k.a. Hi‘iaka, was referenced in "A Little Story and Some Chants: Traditions of Hi‘iaka-i-ka-poli-o-Pele." From 1860 to 1928, several important Hawaiian-language publications provided readers with variations in the telling of this tradition.