Magazine article Sunset

Sugar Town Past on Oahu

Magazine article Sunset

Sugar Town Past on Oahu

Article excerpt

TO WALK THROUGH HAWAII'S Plantation Village is to step back 50 to 100 years, to when growing sugar was Hawaii's main business and thousands of plantation workers lived in ethnic camps. This 3-acre village, part of the 50-acre nonprofit Waipahu Cultural Garden Park, winds along a hillside below the Oahu Sugar Company mill (one of only two sugar companies left on Oahu) overlooking the town of Waipahu, 20 miles from Waikiki.

Here, you'll find examples of the houses, gardens, and community buildings of contract laborers brought to work the sugar plantations between 1852 and 1946. Two historic jewels are the restored 1914 red-painted Japanese Wakamiya Inari Shinto Shrine and a restored Chinese cookhouse from about 1912. The green-and-red-veranda-wrapped Chinese fraternal society clubhouse next to them is a copy of one on Maui.

The remaining 27 structures are mostly airy, single-wall boxes with sloping roofs and porches, built from old blueprints or measured drawings of buildings on other islands. Houses range from late 19th- to early 20th-century whitewashed board-and-batten cottages with separate kitchens, baths, and toilet houses, to tongue-and-groove dwellings with all facilities inside. Authentic furnishings, from beds to kitchenware to objects of art and worship, were donated by descendants of workers who once toiled in the fields 12 hours a day. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.