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'Ooro, One of the Principal Officers of Kamehameha II', pen and ink wash over graphite by Jacques Arago, 1819, Honolulu Academy of Arts.jpg
Ooro (French spelling) by Jacques Arago 1819
Born 1794
Died 1844
Spouse Charlotte Halaki Kahepakekapuikaailani Cox
Issue Kaiheʻekai
Father Kameʻeiamoku
Mother Kahikoloa

Hoʻolulu (1794–1844) was a member of the nobility during the formation of the Kingdom of Hawaii. He was a trusted advisor to King Kamehameha I, also known as "Kamehameha the Great", and was one of the select few to know his secret resting place. His descendants continue the tradition of guarding royal burials. A major cultural site in Hilo, Hawaii is named after him.


Another depiction by Arago 1819
painting of young woman
Painting of daughter Kinoʻoleoliliha

He was born around 1794; his mother was Kahikoloa and his father was one of the "Royal Twins" who supported Kamehameha in his military battles, Kameʻeiamoku. He became known as ho'o lulu which means "to lie in the sheltered waters" in the Hawaiian language.[1] When Kamehameha died in 1819, his last wishes were to have his remains hidden in a secret place so they would not be defiled by the foreign visitors who were already looting other burial sites. Hoʻolulu and his half-brother Ulumāheihei Hoapili were the only two trusted with this honor.[2]

He is one of the principal chiefs who met Louis de Freycinet on his 1819 visit.[3]

Hoʻolulu died around 1844.[4]


Around 1825 Hoʻolulu married Chiefess Charlotte Halaki Kahepakekapuikaailani Cox (1805–1845) whose father was Englishman Harold Cox and mother was High Chiefess Namahana of Moana.[5] They had two daughters and two sons.[6]

Son Kaiheʻekai (died 1865) took the Christian name "John Harold" and married Chiefess Namahana III also known as Namahana Kaleleonalani or by a Christian name of Lydia. Namahana III was a grandniece of powerful Queen Kaʻahumanu.[4][7][8] They had a daughter Miriam Auhea Kekāuluohi (1839–1899), named for the Kuhina Nui (co-regent) at the time, Kekāuluohi. Auhea Kekāuluohi was mentioned as betrothed to Prince Lunalilo, but instead would marry American William Isaac, (or Jesse) Crowningburg (who claimed relationship to a Duke of Königsberg) and then after a divorce and his death,[9] remarry Paul Kamai in 1873.[10] After Lunalilo's death during his short reign as King, Miriam was considered to have a claim to the throne herself.[11] She never contested the closer connections of the other contenders: Queen Emma, Bernice Pauahi Bishop, and Ruth Keʻelikōlani.

Daughter Kinoʻoleoliliha (1827–1855) married American businessman Benjamin Pitman.[12] Not much is known of son Moʻoheau-nui-i-Kaʻaiawaʻawa-o-ʻUlu (1828–1845). Daughter Kahinu o-Kekuaokalani-i-Lekeleke (1829–after 1853) married William Beckley (1814–1871) son of George Charles Beckley, who is sometimes credited with designing the Flag of Hawaii.[13] Their son Fredrick William Bekley served as Royal Governor of Kauaʻi in 1880.[14]


The Pitman Tablet was sculpted by his great-grandson Theodore Baldwin Pitman in honor of the sesquicentennial of Captain James Cook's arrival in Hawaii and the Pitman family of Hawaii.

In 1893, a small caretaker's house called Hale Hoʻolulu was built at the Royal Mausoleum of Hawaii. A descendant has lived in it for six generations to continue the tradition of guarding the tombs of Hawaiian royalty.[15][16] William John Kaiheʻekai Maiʻoho was appointed to that position in 1995 and died in 2015.[2]

His granddaughter Auhea Kekāuluohi named a valley[17] on the island of Kauaʻi and stream for him at 22°12′2″N 159°36′31″W / 22.20056°N 159.60861°W / 22.20056; -159.60861 (Ho'olulu Stream).[18] A street is named for him in Honolulu at 21°16′44″N 157°48′42″W / 21.27889°N 157.81167°W / 21.27889; -157.81167 (Ho'olulu Street).

A large park complex in Hilo at 19°43′9″N 155°4′3″W / 19.71917°N 155.06750°W / 19.71917; -155.06750 (Ho'olulu Park) is named for him. It includes the Afook-Chinen Civic Auditorium, Walter Victor Baseball Complex, Dr. Francis F.C. Wong Stadium, Sally Kaleohano's Luʻau Hale, Edith Kanakaole Multi-Purpose Stadium, and Sparky Kawamoto Swim Stadium.[19] Hoʻolulu Park is the location of the annual Merrie Monarch Festival, named in honor of King Kalākaua, the great grand-nephew of Hoʻolulu,[20] and sporting events of the University of Hawaii at Hilo. The auditorium is named for coach Ung-Soy "Beans" Afook and athlete and promoter Richard "Pablo" Chinen who both died in 1991.[21] The park is the setting of at least one fiction book.[22]


  1. ^ Pukui, Mary Kawena; Elbert, Samuel H.; Mookini, Esther T. (1974). Place Names of Hawaii. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press. p. 52. ISBN 978-0-8248-0524-1. OCLC 1042464. 
  2. ^ a b William John Kaiheʻekai Maiʻoho (2003). "Nuʻuanu, Oʻahu – Memories: Mauna ʻAla". Pacific Worlds & Associates. Retrieved 2009-12-08. 
  3. ^ Jacques Arago (1823). Narrative of a voyage round the world, in the Uranie and Physicienne corvettes, commanded by Captain Freycinet, during the years 1817, 1818, 1819, and 1820. Treuttel & Wurtz, Treuttal, jun. & Richter. p. 116. 
  4. ^ a b "KAIHEEKAI,JOHN HOOLULU LCA 7711" (PDF). Kanaka Genealogy web site. Retrieved June 5, 2014. 
  5. ^ Kapiikauinamoku (1956). "Peleuli II Brought Up In Kamehamehaʻs Court". in The Story of Maui Royalty. The Honolulu Advertiser, Ulukau, the Hawaiian Electronic Library. 
  6. ^ Christopher Buyers. "Kauai Genealogy". The Royal Ark web site. Retrieved 2009-12-04. 
  7. ^ Kapiikauinamoku (1955). "Namahana III Assumes Commemorative Title". in The Story of Hawaiian Royalty. The Honolulu Advertiser, Ulukau, the Hawaiian Electronic Library. 
  8. ^ Hawaiʻi State Archives (2006). "John Kaiheekai death record". Ulukau, the Hawaiian Electronic Library. Retrieved September 20, 2010. 
  9. ^ Hawaiʻi State Archives (2006). "Auhea (w) v Jesse Crowningburg divorce record". Ulukau, the Hawaiian Electronic Library. Retrieved September 20, 2010. 
  10. ^ Kapiikauinamoku (1955). "Parentage Established Degrees Among Alii-Kapu". in The Story of Hawaiian Royalty. The Honolulu Advertiser, Ulukau, the Hawaiian Electronic Library. Retrieved September 20, 2010. 
  11. ^ Kapiikauinamoku (1956). "Rank of Nine Persons Causes Much Dissension". in The Story of Maui Royalty. The Honolulu Advertiser, Ulukau, the Hawaiian Electronic Library. 
  12. ^ "Mookuauhau Alii – Na Iwikuamoo o Hawaii Nei Mai Kahiko Mai" (PDF). Ka Makaainana. VI (5). Honolulu. August 3, 1896. p. 2. 
  13. ^ "Hoolulu, (k)". Our Family History and Ancestry. Families of Old Hawaii. Retrieved 2009-12-04. 
  14. ^ "Beckley, Fredrick W. Sr. office record". state archives digital collections. state of Hawaii. Retrieved 2009-11-17. 
  15. ^ Sally Apgar (March 5, 2006). "Mai'ohos feel drawn to royal burial site Six generations have cared for the Nuuanu mausoleum for Hawaii's kings". Honolulu Star-Bulletin. Retrieved 2009-12-09. 
  16. ^ Mari-Ela David (July 23, 2009). "Royal Mausoleum caretaker's bloodline rich in ancient Hawaiian history". KHNL news. Retrieved 2009-12-09. 
  17. ^ U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: Ho'olulu Valley
  18. ^ Mary Kawena Pukui, Samuel Hoyt Elbert and Esther T. Mookini (2004). "lookup of Ho'olulu ". in Place Names of Hawai'i. Ulukau, the Hawaiian Electronic Library, University of Hawaii Press. Retrieved September 20, 2010. 
  19. ^ "Department of Parks and Recreation". official web site. Hawaii County. 
  20. ^ "Event Information". Merrie Monarch Festival web site. Archived from the original on 2009-08-31. Retrieved 2009-12-04. 
  21. ^ Dan Cisco (1999). Hawaiʻi sports: history, facts, and statistics. University of Hawaii Press. p. 47. ISBN 978-0-8248-2121-0. 
  22. ^ Juliet S. Kono (2004). Hoʻolulu Park and the Pepsodent smile and other stories. Bamboo Ridge Press. ISBN 978-0-910043-70-0.