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Kaiulani’s story spans the years when Hawaii struggled against foreign domination, the monarchy was overthrown, and Hawaii became a U.S. territory. It is a dramatic story, full of interest, beauty, and pathos, both fascinating as the biography of a singularly gifted, beautiful, and wise young woman, and valuable as a chapter in the history of the fiftieth state.
Before Hawaii was unified under a single monarch, its islands were ruled by warring chiefs. In 1810, the islands were finally united under a chief considered to be the greatest of Hawaii’s monarchs—Kamehameha the Great. His reign marked the beginning of the Kingdom of Hawaii that lasted until its tragic overthrow in 1893 by American businessmen. The Hawaiian Monarchy provides a narrative overview of each major monarch as they fought to protect Hawaiian sovereignty and its people, covering major events during their rule and the challenges they encountered.