In addition to naming traditional residents and noted places of Honouliuli, the records of the Māhele ‘Āina also provide us with important information on residency, land use practices, physical features—today’s cultural sites, and some of the plants or resources which were tended as food crops by the people who lived on the land. While there do not appear to be any direct references to lands now within the boundaries of the Haseko Development or for the cultural resources which are under the stewardship of the Hoakalei Cultural Foundation, there are important descriptions of agricultural practices in neighboring coastal lands and similar environments. The descriptions help us form an image of how people lived on the land, and actually provide us with a template for interpretation of some resources in the three preservation areas.
On December 13, 1847, Nahuawai, a native tenant of Pu‘uloa, Honouliuli, wrote a description of agricultural practices and features he claimed at Keahi, in the ‘ili of Pu‘uloa, near the Pearl Harbor entrance. The record, in Hawaiian, states
I ka poe hanohano na Luna Hoona Kumu Kuleana aina o ko Hawaii nei pae aina. Aloha oukou. Ke hai aku nei au ia oukou i ko‘u kuleana hale, a kula hui. Me keia ka hui ana, aole i ike pono ia ke kuauna elike me ka loi kalo, i ka poopoo pohaku e kanu ai kekahi, i kahi kaheka kekahi, lele wale aku no i kela wahi i keia wahi.
Eia ko‘u hale ma Keahi i Puuloa, Ewa, Mokupuni Oahu. Eia kona mau palena, ma ka Akau he kula e ku ana i kau haha paakai, ma ka Hikina ko Naunau ana puni, ma ka Hema ke kai, ka ke Komohana ke ana puni o Mahiole.
16 makahiki ko‘u noho ana i keia kuleana hale. O wau no me ka mahalo kau kauwa hoolohe.
The translation of the record is below.
To the Honorable Commissioners who Quiet Land Claims. Aloha to you. I hereby tell you of my house and combined kula parcel claim. The combined boundaries are not known like those of the banked walls of loi kalo (taro pond fields), the planting is done in hollows of rocks, and in kaheka (small brackish water ponds) and are scattered about at various places.
Here is my house at Keahi in Puuloa, Ewa, Island of Oahu. Here are its boundaries: towards the North, a kula parcel where my haha paakai (salt gathering beds) are situated; towards the East, surrounded by Naunau; towards the South, the sea; towards the West, surrounded by Mahiole.
My residency at this house claim has been for 16 years. I am with appreciation, your obedient servant.
1Native Register, Vol. 5, Number 6132, Puuloa, Ewa, December 13, 1847, p. 243–244.
2Translated by Maly.