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The Oahu College at the Sandwich Islands   By:

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The Oahu College at the Sandwich Islands by Punahou School offers a captivating journey into the history and development of education in Hawaii. As an institution deeply intertwined with the island's cultural fabric, Punahou School has successfully chronicled its evolution through this well-researched and engrossing book.

Right from the opening pages, the reader is transported to the early 19th century, when the school was established in the remote and enchanting island of Oahu. Delving into the archives, the authors unravel an enthralling tale of perseverance, dedication, and the strong will to cultivate education in a region where educational opportunities were scarce.

Through the vivid descriptions and compelling narratives, The Oahu College at the Sandwich Islands brings to life the atmosphere within the school's walls, showcasing the determination and resourcefulness of its teachers and students. The authors skillfully weave together interviews, anecdotes, and official records, painting a comprehensive picture of the college's growth over the years.

While the book focuses primarily on the school's early years, it also highlights key milestones and transforming moments throughout its history. From facing financial challenges and adapting to cultural shifts to embracing diversity and modern educational practices, the Oahu College emerges as an institution that thrives on adaptation, innovation, and a commitment to excellence.

One of the book's greatest strengths lies in its use of visual aids, including beautifully reproduced photographs, illustrations, and maps that provide valuable insights into the college's physical transformation and its strategic location amidst the striking natural beauty of Hawaii. Additionally, the inclusion of personal stories from alumni adds a human touch, making the historical context both relatable and meaningful.

An interesting aspect of The Oahu College at the Sandwich Islands is its exploration of the school's impact on the wider community and its engagement with the Hawaiian culture. Alongside academic excellence, the institution successfully instilled strong values, a sense of community, and an awareness of the island's heritage among its students. This connection to the local culture distinguishes the school as more than just a center for academics, but also as a guardian of Hawaiian traditions and history.

While the writing style is generally informative and engaging, at times, the book becomes somewhat dense, occasionally incorporating excessive details that may overwhelm readers with less familiarity with the subject matter. A more streamlined approach in these sections could enhance the overall reading experience.

In conclusion, The Oahu College at the Sandwich Islands is a compelling and invaluable addition to the historiography of education in Hawaii. Punahou School's meticulous research, rich storytelling, and dedication to connecting the past with the present make this book an essential resource for anyone interested in the intriguing history of the Oahu College and the significant role it has played in shaping education and preserving Hawaiian culture.

First Page:







In the year 1841, a school was commenced, for the children of missionaries, at Punahou, near Honolulu, Sandwich Islands. Five year ago, it was opened to others besides the children of missionaries. The number of pupils has varied from thirty to sixty, and the whole number of pupils, up to September, 1854, was one hundred and twenty two. In May, 1853, the Hawaiian Government incorporated twelve persons, all of them except one either then or formerly connected with the mission, as a corporate body by the name of " The Trustees of the Punahou School and Oahu College ." It is probable that the legal name of the institution will be shortened, and that it will be called simply the " Oahu College ."

The charter recognizes the design of the institution to be "the training of youth in the various branches of a Christian education, teaching them sound and useful knowledge." It further states, that, "as it is reasonable that the Christian education should be in conformity to the general views of the founders and patrons of the institution, no course of instruction shall be deemed lawful in said institution, which is not accordant with the principles of Protestant Evangelical Christianity, as held by that body of Protestant Christians in the United States of America, which originated the Christian mission to the Islands, and to whose labors and benevolent contributions the people of these Islands are so greatly indebted... Continue reading book >>

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