Before the twentieth century, Lahaina was home to Hawaiian royalty, whaling ships, missionaries, plantation workers, and travelers. Many cultural landmarks harkened back to the time of Kamehameha I; the days of whalers and sailors; the arrival of missionaries; the rise of sugar plantations and the arrival of plantation workers from China, Japan, Korea, and Portugal; World War II; and the growing tourism industry that kept Front Street alive with restaurants, art galleries, and shops.
Lahaina Yesterdays looks back at the town’s history through its landmarks and landscapes. Early drawings of Lahaina Missionary Seminary and views of the coastline show the harbor’s evolution into a bustling seaport. Early photos of Front Street show horse-drawn carriages, the old courthouse, and the Pioneer Mill and Inn. There are portraits of leading figures in Lahaina’s history as well as residents from the turn of the twentieth century. The buildings constructed by Hawaiian monarchy, missionaries, and businessmen such as the U.S. Seaman’s Hospital, the Masters’ Reading Room, and The Pioneer Inn illustrate the governance, industriousness, and community of those who shaped Lahaina.
On August 8, 2023, many of these historically significant structures were destroyed or damaged by the nation’s deadliest wildfire in over a century. Thousands of residents who kept Lahaina a quiet, yet active seaside town full of music, food, art, and culture lost their homes, loved ones, and livelihoods. Although many structures were lost, they are sure to be rebuilt and will never be forgotten.
Mutual Publishing will donate a portion of sales proceeds towards the Maui Fire Disaster Relief – Hawaii Community Foundation “Maui Strong Fund”