The State of HawaiiThe Aloha State

The State of Hawai‘i

The Aloha State 

Facts and Official Information About the State of Hawai‘i

Land Area: 6,423.4 square miles (16,636.6 sq. km).

Size Comparison: 47th largest of the United States.

Statehood: Became 50th state on August 21, 1959.

Latitude: Between 19º and 22º north (main Islands).

Longitude: Between 155º and 161º west (main Islands).

State Bird: Nēnē—Hawaiian goose (Branta sandvicensis).

State Tree: Kukui—Candlenut (Aleurites moluccana).

State Flower: Pua Ma‘o Hau Hele—Yellow Hibiscus (Hibiscus brackenridgei).

State Marine Mammal: Koholā—Humpback Whale (Megaptera novaeangliae).

State Plant: Kalo—Taro (Colocasia esculenta).

State Team Sport: Outrigger Canoe Paddling.

State Fish: Humuhumunukunukuāpua‘a—Reef triggerfish (Rhinecanthus rectangulus).

State Gem: Black Coral.

Official State Nickname: The Aloha State.

State Motto:

Ua mau ke ea o ka ‘āina i ka pono.

The life of the land is perpetuated (preserved) in righteousness.

State Seal:

Hawai‘i’s State Seal was created in 1959 when the Hawaiian Islands became the 50th state. Designed after the Territorial Seal, the State Seal is circular in shape, with the words “State of Hawai‘i” on the top of the Seal, and Hawai‘i’s State Motto (see above) written on the bottom.

In the middle of the State Seal is a heraldic shield, which is also the state’s Coat of Arms. Kapu sticks are on the lower left and upper right of the shield, and horizontal stripes are at the lower right and upper left of the shield.

Above the shield is the sun, and “1959,” commemorating statehood. King Kamehameha I is to the left of the shield, while the Goddess of Liberty (holding the state flag) is on the right side of the shield.

A phoenix with leaves of kalo (Colocasia esculenta, taro), mai‘a (Musa species, banana), and ‘iwa‘iwa (Adiantaceae, maidenhair fern) are at the bottom of the State Seal, which was designed by Viggo Jacobsen in 1895 for the Republic of Hawai‘i. The State Seal was designed after the Territorial Seal.

[Photograph: State Seal]

 

State Song (Anthem): Hawai‘i Pono‘ī

The words to Hawai‘i Pono‘ī were written by King Kalākaua [David La‘amea Kalākaua]. The music was written by Henry Berger).

 

Hawai‘i Pono‘ī[i] 

Hawai‘i pono‘ī,

Nānā i kou mō‘ī,

Ka lani ali‘i,

Ke ali‘i.

Hawai‘i pono‘ī,

Nānā i nā ali‘i,

Nā pua muli kou,

Nā pōki‘i.

Hawai‘i pono‘ī,

E ka lahui ē,

‘Ō kau hana nui,

E ui ē,

Hui (Chorus):

Makua lani ē

Kamehameha ē

Na kāua e pale

Me ka ihe

Translation:

Hawai‘i’s Own

Hawai‘i’s own,

Look to your king,

The royal chief,

The chief.

Hawai‘i’s own,

Look to your chiefs,

The children after you,

The young.

Hawai‘i’s own,

O Nation,

Your great duty,

Strive.

Hui (Chorus):

Royal father,

Kamehameha,

We shall defend,

With spears.


 

Ocean Channels Between the Hawaiian Islands

 

Kaulakahi Channel

Kaulakahi means “The single flame (streak of color”[ii])

Location: Between Kaua‘i and Ni‘ihau

Ka‘ie‘iewaho Channel

Ka‘ie‘iewaho means “Outer Ka‘ie‘ie”[iii]

Named after the ‘ie‘ie vine (Freycinetia arborea))

Location: Between Kaua‘i and O‘ahu

The Ka‘ie‘iewaho is also called the Kaua‘i Channel.

Kaiwi Channel

Kaiwi means “The bone”[iv]

Location: Between Moloka‘i and O‘ahu

Kalohi Channel

Kalohi means “The slowness”[v]

Location: Between Lāna‘i and Moloka‘i

Pailolo Channel

Pailolo means “Pai (lift), oloolo (shifting)”[vi]

Location: Between Maui and Moloka‘i

‘Au‘au Channel

‘Au‘au means “Bathe”[vii]

Location: Between Lāna‘i and Maui

Kealaikahiki Channel

Kealaikahiki means “The way to foreign lands”[viii]

Location: Between Kaho‘olawe and Lāna‘i

‘Alalākeiki Channel

‘Alalākeiki means “Child’s wail (believed heard here)”[ix]

Location: Between Maui and Kaho‘olawe

‘Alenuihāhā Channel

‘Alenuihāhā means “Great billows smashing”[x]

Location: Between Maui and Hawai‘i Island


 

Distances:

Hawai‘i Island to Midway Atoll: 1,580 miles (2,543 km).

Hawai‘i Island to Kaua‘i: More than 400 miles (644 km).

Honolulu to Equator: 1,470 miles (2,366 km).

Honolulu to Tokyo, Japan: 3,847 miles (6,191 km).

Honolulu to Los Angeles, California: 2,557 miles (4,115 km).

Honolulu to Anchorage Alaska: 2,781 miles (4,476 km).

Honolulu to Midway Atoll: 1,309 miles (2,107 km).

[Illustration: Map of eight main Hawaiian Islands, each island boldly labeled.]

[Text underneath: The State of Hawai‘i. Text on each island: Kaua‘i, Ni‘ihau, O‘ahu, Maui, Lāna‘i, Kaho‘olawe, Moloka‘i, and Hawai‘i Island.]

[Text below illustration:]

The Hawaiian Islands.

The Hawaiian archipelago slices through the Tropic of Cancer, and extends in a line from southeast to northwest for about 1,523 miles (2,451 km), from Hawai‘i Island at about 19º north latitude to Kure Island at 28.5º north latitude, from 154º to 179º west longitude.

Only three of the fifty United States are smaller than the State of Hawai‘i. These three states are: Rhode Island, Connecticut and Delaware.

The eight main Hawaiian Islands span from about 19º to 22º north latitude, and from about 154º to 161º west longitude. The main Hawaiian Islands comprise 99.9% of the total land area of the Hawaiian Island Chain.

The Northwestern Hawaiian Islands constitute the other .1% (one-tenth of one percent) of the State of Hawai‘i’s land area.

Na kai ‘ewalu.

The eight seas.

The “seas” that divide the eight inhabited islands.

(Pukui: 2224-243)

Each of the Hawaiian Islands was born on the seafloor at the site of the Hawaiian magmatic hot spot, a stationary plume of magma (molten lava) rising up from deep in the Earth (see Hawaiian-Emperor Chain, Chapter 4).

This volcanic activity continues today as the uprising lava burns through the crust of the Pacific seafloor and forms volcanoes that eventually rise above the ocean’s surface to become islands.

The Hawaiian Islands are continually carried northwest by the movement of Earth’s crust. The southeast portion of the island of Hawai‘i, the chain’s newest island, is currently above the hot spot plume of lava.

About 18 miles (29 km) off the southeast coast of Hawai‘i Island, Lō‘ihi Seamount is about 3,116 feet (950 m) below the surface of the Pacific Ocean, and rises up more than 9,000 feet (2,743 m) tall from the seafloor.

The erupting summit of Lō‘ihi should rise above the water in about 50,000 to 200,000 years from now to become the next Hawaiian Island.



[i] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hawai%27i_pono%27i, citing: Huapala – Hawaiian Music and Hula Archives.

[ii] Pukui, Mary Kawena, Elbert, Samuel H., and Mookini, Esther T. Mookini. Place Names of Hawaii: Revised & Expanded Edition. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 1974.

[iii] Pukui, Mary Kawena, Elbert, Samuel H., and Mookini, Esther T. Mookini. Place Names of Hawaii: Revised & Expanded Edition. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 1974.

[iv] Pukui, Mary Kawena, Elbert, Samuel H., and Mookini, Esther T. Mookini. Place Names of Hawaii: Revised & Expanded Edition. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 1974.

[v] Pukui, Mary Kawena, Elbert, Samuel H., and Mookini, Esther T. Mookini. Place Names of Hawaii: Revised & Expanded Edition. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 1974.

[vi] Pukui, Mary Kawena, Elbert, Samuel H., and Mookini, Esther T. Mookini. Place Names of Hawaii: Revised & Expanded Edition. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 1974.

[vii] Pukui, Mary Kawena, Elbert, Samuel H., and Mookini, Esther T. Mookini. Place Names of Hawaii: Revised & Expanded Edition. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 1974.

[viii] Pukui, Mary Kawena, Elbert, Samuel H., and Mookini, Esther T. Mookini. Place Names of Hawaii: Revised & Expanded Edition. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 1974.

[ix] Pukui, Mary Kawena, Elbert, Samuel H., and Mookini, Esther T. Mookini. Place Names of Hawaii: Revised & Expanded Edition. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 1974.

[x] Pukui, Mary Kawena, Elbert, Samuel H., and Mookini, Esther T. Mookini. Place Names of Hawaii: Revised & Expanded Edition. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 1974.