From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
- Cathedral of Our Lady of Peace is the oldest Roman Catholic cathedral in continuous use today in the United States.
- ‘Iolani Palace is the only official royal residence on United States land.
- Royal Hawaiian Hotel was the Western White House of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt; the Shirley Temple cocktail was invented at one of its bars.
- Hawai‘i currently has three highways: the H1, H2, and H3. The H3 work crew is reputed to have sealed completed electrical and water housings due to funding shortages. The H2 is known for the strange zig-zag pattern of concrete laid for added "safety grip" by an engineer. Drivers are advised not to stare at the pattern as it both distracts and disorients.
- Hawai‘i has the most endemic species of plants and animals that are vulnerable to outside threats. Ecologists have called Hawai‘i the endangered species capital. Among the rarest of these species is the Po‘ouli Hawaiian honeycreeper; it has only two known survivors found in Maui.
- Hawai‘i orientation is not expressed using traditional cardinal directions of north, south, east and west. Traditional compass points are sometimes considered confusing or even impractical in a mountainous island environment, especially when used for driving directions. Instead, the term mauka is used to orient a person towards the mountain or center of an island. Makai is used to orient a person towards the sea. On the island of O‘ahu, Diamond Head is used to orient a person towards the eastern shore. ‘Ewa is used to orient a person towards the western shore. On the island of Hawaii (a.k.a. "The Big Island"), directions are expressed with Hilo and Kona sides.
- The North American Numbering Plan area code prescribed for the entire state of Hawai‘i is 808. It is one of only a few states to have a single, unified area code.
- Hawai‘i is only one of two states that does not observe Daylight Saving Time in any of its territories; the other state being Arizona.
- Despite its notoriety for having one of the most centralized state governments in the United States, Hawai‘i is the only one without a state police force. It is also the only state without a unified Department of Motor Vehicles; vehicle registration and driver license issuance is delegated to the four counties.
- Kamehameha Day is the only holiday in the United States that celebrates a monarch. Prince Kuhio Day is the only other day that celebrates the life of a royal.
- James Kealoha, Lieutenant Governor of Hawai‘i, was the center of a dramatic presidential ballot recount in the race for President of the United States between John F. Kennedy and Richard Nixon. In 1960, Kealoha ordered an audit of ballots when it seemed Kennedy would win by a slim margin. The election nationwide was so close, Hawai‘i effectively had the power to decide the winner. Kealoha certified the vote total in favor of fellow Republican Nixon resulting in the call of national Democrats for a recount. The recounts were tied up in the Hawai‘i State Judiciary. Confusion led to crisis as the Democrats submitted their three electoral votes for Kennedy while at the same time Republicans submitted their three electoral votes for Nixon. The result was finally resolved on the floor of the United States Senate during the electoral college certification process.