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29 January

Liliuokalani Proclaimed Queen of Hawaii

Liliuokalani of Hawaii

Liliuokalani of Hawaii

On January 29, 1891 Liliuokalani was pronounced queen.  She was the last monarch and only queen regnant, woman monarch ruling in her own right (aka no king).  She was born to a high chief and chieftess in 1838. Loosely translated her name means “the smarting of the royal ones”.  She married a American born statesmen named John Owen Dominis in 1862.  Dominis’ father had moved the family to Honolulu in 1837.  Dominis cheated on the queen a lot but she still loved him and stayed with him.  When he had a son from another woman Liliuokalani even tried to claim the child as her own to save Dominis the embarrassment of his public infidelity.

In 1874 Liliuokalani’s brother was elected king.  He died on January 20, 1891.  Nine days later Liliuokalani was queen.  Her reign didn’t last.  On January 14, 1893 a group of American’s and Europeans formed the Committee of Safety.  It should have been called the group to Hawaii as a state.  On February 1, 1893 the US minister/ambassador to Hawaii proclaimed the territory to be a protectorate of the United States.  A protectorate is an autonomous territory that is protected diplomatically or militarily against third parties by a stronger state or entity.  On July 4, 1894, the Republic of Hawaii was proclaimed and Sanford B. Dole became President.  Yummy Pineapples!  Hawaii was not admitted to the union until August 21, 1951.

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27 October

Book Review: Elizabeth the Queen: The Life of a Modern Monarch


As a whole I really loved Elizabeth the Queen: The Life of a Modern Monarch. I thought it might be dry and boring. I was excited to get a free book no matter the subject. But I have always had an interest in the royal family, after all as Americans those are our roots, however old.

For me the book never got dry or boring it was never full of dates/names with out relevant and interesting stories. Overall, it was very well written! A hefty book to be sure, but Ms. Smith covered a lot of information very well and concisely, I thought.

I have a new interest in the royal family and can’t wait to see what happens next. I wish we had better coverage of all the news about them here in the states. If anyone has some links to share to good websites I would really appreciate it. Also, anyone “in-the-know” about the royal family could perhaps share a few more book recommendations? I am very interested in learning more about the next generation of royals that Ms. Smith covered in the last chapter.

I wish there had been more about each of the Queen’s children, but it was of course a book about her and not her children.

A couple of things that I found interesting about the queen.

Although the text seems to call out the fact that the queen is very cold not a very loving or personable individual, Ms. Smith went to lengths to try to say that was okay over and over again. I thought this was odd. Almost as if the author was defending the queen’s iciness.

Here is a questions for the group. Do you think the Queen was a good mom? For me I would have to say no, but is that really so bad, I mean for the kids yes, but is she a queen first or a mother first? How does her mother/leader role differ from that of the first lady here in the states?

Why doesn’t the queen give interviews or write a biography? Over again and again was the point that the British people needed to know her better, wouldn’t an interview/book do that?

Sally Bedell Smith: “Elizabeth the Queen: The Life of a Modern Monarch” from Radnor Historical Society on Vimeo.

Learn more about the other Royals.