Hello Friends and Family,

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Maui on my Mind, Part 11

When I visit Hawai‘i, I enjoy exploring the historic places that most people don't even know about. Even long-term residents of Maui may not be familiar with the Bailey House in Wailuku near Iao Valley (home of Iao Needle). Earlier in this trip, when I visited the Wo Hing Temple Museum in Lahaina, my paid admission also granted me free admission to the Bailey House. Since I was not familiar with it, I had to go.

According to their website, "Constructed in 1833, this lava rock and koa wood structure was built at the bottom of Iao Valley. This location is the former royal compound of Kahekili II, who was the last ruling chief of Maui."

Do notice the nice landscaping in all these outdoor photos. It is representative of the style that would have been in place at the time the house was built and occupied.

Additionally, "This house was originally meant to be a mission for adults and children, however, in 1837, it was transformed into the Wailuku Female Seminary. This boarding school was known for teaching their students Christianity, domestic skills like sewing and housekeeping. Their academic undertaking included the three R's, which are reading, writing and arithmetic."

Continuing the history, "Reverend Jonathan Smith Green and Theodora were the managers of the establishment, and in 1844, Missionary teachers Caroline and Edward Bailey took over shortly after they arrived in Hawaii. Since this was one of the first western-style houses in Wailuku, the 'Old Bailey House' is now listed in the National Register of Historic Places. Edward Bailey and his family stayed in this house until 1888. The Bailey House opened its doors as a museum in 1957."

BTW, I love the rainbow shower tree shown here — so pretty.

Here we can see an outrigger canoe, Honaunau, some 20 feet long, carved from a single koa wood log in the early 1900s. You can see the disassembled outrigger hanging on the wall behind the canoe. This type of canoe would have been used for fishing or ocean transportation to other locations on Maui or even to the neighboring islands. It was one of the last such canoes to be made in Hawai‘i.

Additionally on display is Duke Kahanamoku's 1919 redwood surfboard which is hard to see in this photo but is against the wall to the right (between the signs). Perhaps you'll have to go see it for yourself.

Oh, it looks like one of the golfers from last week has returned home.

The interior of the Bailey House has been turned into a museum with the first floor displaying utensils, tools and weapons that date back to Pre-European contact. This is a poi pounder, a tool for transforming the corm of the taro plant into a smooth paste called poi. It can be eaten immediately or left a bit longer to ferment. Poi was the traditional staple food of the Hawaiian natives.

Also, on display are many of Edward Bailey's landscape paintings. In addition to their artistic value, they are also of historic interest since they depict Hawai‘i and particularly Maui in the mid-1800s.

In the room that was once the kitchen, a beautiful quilt is on display with symbols of the Hawaiian Kingdom and its royalty. My mom was a quilter and she would have loved to have seen this one.

To be continued...

Life is good.

B. David

P. S., All photos and text © B. David Cathell Photography, Inc. — www.bdavidcathell.com