History of Hawaii


Hawaii was first settled long ago by people from the island of Tahiti. The first Europeans to visit the islands were Captain James Cook, a British naval officer, and his crew in 1778. Later, Hawaii became famous for its pineapple and sugarcane crops.

Americans entered World War II because of a surprise Japanese attack, December 7, 1941, on the U.S. military in Pearl Harbor. Now it is a very popular vacation spot for people all over the world.

Here is a time line from B.C. to 1800

300-900: Some of the islands are settled by Polynesians, who come in large canoes.

1778: Captain James Cook arrives on the islands and names them the Sandwich Islands after his sponsor, England's earl of Sandwich. He is killed by Hawaiians on his return trip 1779.


1775: Chief Kamehameha conquers most of the islands and unifies them. His kingdom lasts until 1893.

1819: The first American whaling ships arrive in Honolulu. Whaling reaches its peak in 1858.

1820: The first New England missionaries arrive and establish schools.

1835: The first pineapple industry makes its first appearance on the islands.


1893: Queen Liliuokalani is dethroned, and a new government is started.

1911: The U.S. Military builds a large base at Pearl Harbor near Honolulu.

1916: Hawaii Volcanoes National Park is built.


1959: Hawaii becomes the 50th state of America.


1983-1989: The Kilauea Volcano erupts, destroys lots of homes, and forces 400 people to leave the area.


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