HAWAII—JOSEPH O. CARTER ARCHIVE.   A collection of Autograph Letters Signed, Typed Letters Signed, Documents Signed,
Lot 1030
HAWAII—JOSEPH O. CARTER ARCHIVE. A collection of Autograph Letters Signed, Typed Letters Signed, Documents Signed,
Sold for US$ 18,750 inc. premium

Lot Details
A collection of Autograph Letters Signed, Typed Letters Signed, Documents Signed, documents unsigned, fragments, telegrams, newspaper clippings, approximately 390 pp, mostly 4to and 8vo, by JOSEPH K. AEA, MRS. W.P. BARNES, CALVERT T. BIRD, CHARLES REED BISHOP, ABIGAIL K. CAMPBELL, J.H. DICKEY, A. FRIED GRISELDA, FLORENCE MACFARLANE, F.W. MACFARLANE , H. MACFARLANE, H.R. MACFARLANE, G.W. MACFARLANE, JULIUS A. PALMER, R. PETTIGREW, C.B. WELLES, among others, mostly to Joseph O. Carter, Boston, Hilo, Kuai, Honolulu, Oahu, Paia, Maui, Waikee, Maui, San Diego, San Francisco, San Jose and Washington, D.C., 1894-1935, condition good to worn. [WITH:] Proposed Investigation of the Government of the Territory of Hawaii ... United States Government Printing Office: Washington, D.C., 1932 - being an unbound copy of the above pamphlet (separated at pp 28-9), lightly toned.
Provenance: J.O. Carter archive.

An archive of documents mostly relating to Joseph O. Carter, an American attorney who worked in the sugar industry in Hawaii, managed the finances of several American families and small businesses, and was influential in helping Charles Reed Bishop found and run the Kamemehmeha School. A close friend and advisor to the last Queen of the Kingdom of Hawaii, Liliuokalani, Carter was a supporter of the Kingdom and openly against the overthrow of Hawaii in 1893; he was in fact called upon by Queen Liliuokalani to advise her while she was under house arrest. Due to his support of the monarchy, Carter apparently lost several clients and worried about his professional future. On February 10, 1894 C.B. Welles wrote Carter: "... your letter informing me of your misfortune has saddened me; though we have differed widely in politics and I have been pained to see you take the stand you have against what I think is the best for the interest and prosperity of our country, I have always held that while you might be on the wrong tack, you are certainly honest in your convictions ... While you have lost a good position ... why don't you practice medicine? ... I firmly believe, if your life was spared, you would make a pecuniary success in the field of medicine ..."
Carter also put the Queen in touch with reporters to make certain her case was heard in the press. Boston's Daily Evening Transcript reporter Julius A. Palmer wrote to Carter on February 1, 1894 that he "... was most graciously received by HER MAJESTY, the Queen, and ... it is my belief that I owe this flattering reception to your good self ... I do not wish to intrude on her trials and sorrows, personal or national, but after reflection, should she desire the use of my colmns [sic], they are open to her ..."
After Hawaii was formally annexed to the United States in 1898, Carter sought through his contacts in Washington, D.C., to have the annexation reversed and succeeded in garnering United States Congressman R.F. Pettigrew's support: " ... Thanks to your kindness I have been keeping pretty closely posted in regard to the drift of events in Hawaii ... I wish you would write me what you think should be done with the Hawaiian Islands. I am still of the impression that the people of those Islands should be allowed to govern themselves ..."
In addition to assisting Liliuokalani in her bid to have Hawaii restored to the monarchy, Carter acted as her advocate to have the Crown Lands ceded back to her. The Crown Lands included 1.8 million acres set aside by Kamehameha III in 1848 for the use of the Royal Office and their successors, but were lost to the United States once Hawaii was annexed to that nation. On April 5, 1899, G. MacFarlane wrote to the Queen concerning this matter: "... the Brief ... has been prepared ... for your Crown Lands case ... Mr. Carter and myself understand ... that it is a splendidly prepared brief, and makes out your case much better than ... anticipated ... I have not the slightest doubt but that the legislation on Hawaii will go forward in the early part of this session which convenes in December, and I think that is has been to your advantage that earlier action on the Hawaiian commission report was not taken; for it gives us an opportunity to marshal our forces this Summer ... and organize for a strong fight immediately ...[when] the United States assumes control of the lands of Hawaii ..." The title to the Crown Lands is still in dispute today.
A fascinating collection of documents about the overthrow of the monarachy, Hawaiian politics at the turn of the 19th-20th Century and the annexation of Hawaii.
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  1. Catherine Williamson
    Specialist - Books, Maps, Manuscripts and Historical Photographs
    7601 W. Sunset Boulevard
    Los Angeles, United States 90046
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