Scots In Hawaii, The [Radio Scotland]

Episodes

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Broadcast
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01A Scots-hawaiian Princess20161226

One of Robert Louis Stevenson's most beautiful poems The Island Rose, was dedicated to the half Scottish, half Hawaiian Princess Ka'iulani.

But our Scots islands far away

Shall glitter with unwonted day,

And cast for once their tempests by

To smile in Ka'iulani's eye.

She was heir apparent to the Hawaiian throne before the American overthrow of the kingdom in the 1890's. Billy Kay visits places in Waikiki and Honolulu associated with RLS and Ka'iulani, and attends a commemoration ceremony in memory of her and her father Archibald Cleghorn. We will also hear of other influential Scots in the 19th century: Archibald Campbell from Paisley who was taken into the Royal household and there practiced his skills as a weaver; the Scottish statesman from Ayrshire, Robert Crichton Wylie who was an advisor to three kings and is regarded as a leading influence who contributed hugely to the development of Hawaii and its political independence at a time when France, Russia, Britain and the United States had all designs on annexing the islands; Captain Alexander Adams from Arbroath ran the navy for the king, and is buried in Honolulu alongside one of his Scottish drinking companions...the gravestone reads "Twa Cronies frae the Land o Heather Lie sleepin here in daith thegither.".

01A Scots-Hawaiian Princess20161226

One of Robert Louis Stevenson's most beautiful poems The Island Rose, was dedicated to the half Scottish, half Hawaiian Princess Ka'iulani.

But our Scots islands far away

Shall glitter with unwonted day,

And cast for once their tempests by

To smile in Ka'iulani's eye.

She was heir apparent to the Hawaiian throne before the American overthrow of the kingdom in the 1890's. Billy Kay visits places in Waikiki and Honolulu associated with RLS and Ka'iulani, and attends a commemoration ceremony in memory of her and her father Archibald Cleghorn. We will also hear of other influential Scots in the 19th century: Archibald Campbell from Paisley who was taken into the Royal household and there practiced his skills as a weaver; the Scottish statesman from Ayrshire, Robert Crichton Wylie who was an advisor to three kings and is regarded as a leading influence who contributed hugely to the development of Hawaii and its political independence at a time when France, Russia, Britain and the United States had all designs on annexing the islands; Captain Alexander Adams from Arbroath ran the navy for the king, and is buried in Honolulu alongside one of his Scottish drinking companions...the gravestone reads "Twa Cronies frae the Land o Heather Lie sleepin here in daith thegither.".

02The Scotch Coast20161226

The shift moves away from Oahu to the Big Island of Hawaii, Maui and Kauai and the Scottish influence on the sugar industry. When Billy Kay was in Hawaii back in 1975, he met an old gentleman man who remembered leaving Cupar Angus on a horse and trap, bound for a job as a luna or supervisor on a plantation on Hawaii. He and Billy recited Tam o' Shanter from beginning to end! He was part of a migration of people from small town in Angus and the Mearns such as Kirriemuir who worked in the Hamakua district which was known locally as The Scotch Coast. Billy will speak to the descendants of the families to find out what life was like on the sugar plantations where the Scots were mostly managers, engineers and supervisors while the field workers could be gangs of Japanese, Portuguese or Philipinos. Did the Scots live up to their ideal of "a man's a man for a' that" in this multicultural setting?

We'll also explore the Scottish economic influence, which gave rise to the migration from Scotland. The Glasgow firm of Mirrlees Watson Co Ltd made machinery for the sugar manufacturing process and sent out engineers to Hawaii to build and maintain the machinery. Also, the remarkable wealth generated in the boom years of the jute industry in Dundee, led to the city's excess capital going abroad. One group of jute barons formed the Hawaiian Investment and Agency Company in 1880 and proceeded to lend huge amounts in the land mortgage business and contribute to the economic development of the islands. Due to such investment, Dundee for many years had a Hawaiian Consul resident in the city. The Alliance Trust is still based in Dundee and Billy will speak to them about their history in the islands.

02The Scotch Coast20161226

The shift moves away from Oahu to the Big Island of Hawaii, Maui and Kauai and the Scottish influence on the sugar industry. When Billy Kay was in Hawaii back in 1975, he met an old gentleman man who remembered leaving Cupar Angus on a horse and trap, bound for a job as a luna or supervisor on a plantation on Hawaii. He and Billy recited Tam o' Shanter from beginning to end! He was part of a migration of people from small town in Angus and the Mearns such as Kirriemuir who worked in the Hamakua district which was known locally as The Scotch Coast. Billy will speak to the descendants of the families to find out what life was like on the sugar plantations where the Scots were mostly managers, engineers and supervisors while the field workers could be gangs of Japanese, Portuguese or Philipinos. Did the Scots live up to their ideal of "a man's a man for a' that" in this multicultural setting?

We'll also explore the Scottish economic influence, which gave rise to the migration from Scotland. The Glasgow firm of Mirrlees Watson Co Ltd made machinery for the sugar manufacturing process and sent out engineers to Hawaii to build and maintain the machinery. Also, the remarkable wealth generated in the boom years of the jute industry in Dundee, led to the city's excess capital going abroad . One group of jute barons formed the Hawaiian Investment & Agency Company in 1880 and proceeded to lend huge amounts in the land mortgage business and contribute to the economic development of the islands. Due to such investment, Dundee for many years had a Hawaiian Consul resident in the city. The Alliance Trust is still based in Dundee and Billy will speak to them about their history in the islands.

03Pipers And Plant Collectors20161227

Billy Kay explores another major area of Scottish influence in Hawaii and celebrates great naturalists such as Archibald Menzies and David Douglas, who collected more than 2000 plant specimens on the islands. He actually died in a bull pit while botanising on Hawaii - we will visit the monument at The Doctor's Pit, a Scottish cairn placed there by the Robert Burns Society of Hilo on the foothills of the Mauna Kea volcanoe.

We visit the Scottish Games on Oahu and Billy tells the story of meeting the grande dame of piping in Hawaii, the legendary Aggie Wallace: " When I visited Aggie for the first time, I chapped on her door and I swear she shouted out "Come awa in" She was about 65 years old, a big stoot wumman covered from neck to toe in a Wallace tartan cotton Mother Hubbard" We will speak to her family and her pupils.

We celebrate too the sterling contribution of the Caledonian Society and the St. Andrews society who do excellent work promoting knowledge of the Scottish contribution to the islands, with the Caledonian Society sponsoring educational visits by students from the islands to Scottish institutions like Sabhal Mor Ostaig on Skye. These organisations continue in the tradition of the Thistle Club of Honolulu frequented and described brilliantly by Robert Louis Stevenson. Like him, they are keen to ensure that Scottish culture survives and thrives here in the Pacific.

03Pipers and Plant Collectors20161227

Billy Kay explores another major area of Scottish influence in Hawaii and celebrates great naturalists such as Archibald Menzies and David Douglas, who collected more than 2000 plant specimens on the islands. He actually died in a bull pit while botanising on Hawaii - we will visit the monument at The Doctor's Pit, a Scottish cairn placed there by the Robert Burns Society of Hilo on the foothills of the Mauna Kea volcanoe.

We visit the Scottish Games on Oahu and Billy tells the story of meeting the grande dame of piping in Hawaii, the legendary Aggie Wallace: " When I visited Aggie for the first time, I chapped on her door and I swear she shouted out "Come awa in" She was about 65 years old, a big stoot wumman covered from neck to toe in a Wallace tartan cotton Mother Hubbard" We will speak to her family and her pupils.

We celebrate too the sterling contribution of the Caledonian Society and the St. Andrews society who do excellent work promoting knowledge of the Scottish contribution to the islands, with the Caledonian Society sponsoring educational visits by students from the islands to Scottish institutions like Sabhal Mor Ostaig on Skye. These organisations continue in the tradition of the Thistle Club of Honolulu frequented and described brilliantly by Robert Louis Stevenson. Like him, they are keen to ensure that Scottish culture survives and thrives here in the Pacific.