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Queen Consort of the Hawaiian Islands and Kuhina Nui of the Hawaiian Islands
Kaʻahumanu III
Kuhina Nui of the Hawaiian Islands
ReignApril 5, 1839 – June 7, 1845
Predecessor Kaʻahumanu II
Successor Keoni Ana
Born(1794-07-27)July 27, 1794
Honolulu, Oʻahu
DiedJune 7, 1845(1845-06-07) (aged 50)
Pohukaina, Honolulu
Pohukaina Tomb, then at sea
Spouse Kamehameha I
Kamehameha II
Charles Kanaʻina
Issue Lunalilo
Miriam Auhea Kalani Kui Kawakiu o Kekāuluohi Kealiʻiuhiwaihanau o Kalani Makahonua Ahilapalapa Kai Wikapu o Kaleilei a Kalakua, Kaʻahumanu III
House House of Kamehameha
Father Kalaʻimamahu
Mother Kalākua Kaheiheimālie
Signature Kekāuluohi's signature

Miriam Auhea Kalani Kui Kawakiu o Kekāuluohi Kealiʻiuhiwaihanau o Kalani Makahonua Ahilapalapa Kai Wikapu o Kaleilei a Kalakua [1] also known as Kaʻahumanu III [2] (July 27, 1794 – June 7, 1845), was Kuhina Nui of the Kingdom of Hawaii, a queen consort of both Kamehameha I and Kamehameha II, and mother of Lunalilo. In ʻŌlelo Hawaiʻi (Native Hawaiian language), Kekāuluohi means; "the vigorously growing vine". She adopted her secondary name Auhea, meaning Where, oh where, in memory of the death of Kamehameha I. [3] [4]

Birth and ancestry

Kekāuluohi was born in 1794, [5] the only daughter of her father High Chief Kalaʻimamahu (half-brother of Kamehameha I) with her mother Kalākua Kaheiheimālie of Maui, who was also a wife of Kamehameha I. She was hānai to (adopted by) her grandparents Namahana and Keʻeaumoku, who "fondled her as if she were a feather lei from the precious mamo bird." [6] Through her mother she was a step-daughter of Kamehameha I, founder of the Kingdom of Hawaii, and through her father she was the monarch's niece. [7] She was also half-sister of Kamāmalu and Kīnaʻu. [8]

Early life

She was betrothed to a prince of the Tahitians Pōmare Dynasty at birth, but never married him because of the prince's early death. In 1809 she was chosen along with Manono II by Kamehameha I "to warm his old age". [9] When Kamehameha I died in 1819 she gave herself the name Auhea (where has he gone) in memory of her first husband. She would later marry her cousin Liholiho (who took the throne as King Kamehameha II) as one of his five consorts. She had no children from her first two marriages. In 1821 was given by Kamehameha II to his friend Charles Kanaʻina on Kauaʻi in marriage. [9]

Kuhina Nui

On April 4, 1839 Kīnaʻu, styled as Kaahumanu II, died. The following day Kekāuluohi was initiated into office. Although Kīnaʻu's daughter Victoria Kamāmalu was of higher rank and heir to the premiership, Kekāuluohi was given the position since Victoria was too young. [10] [11] As Kuhina Nui she signed, with the king, all official documents; conducted all executive business affecting the Crown; received and transferred government lands; and served as special Councilor to the king, with exclusive veto power over his decisions. She and Kamehameha III signed the first constitution of the Kingdom of Hawaii in 1840.[ citation needed] It provided for an elected representative body, a first step toward the common people gaining political power. She served in the House of Nobles from its founding. The constitution also codified for the first time the responsibilities and authority of the kuhina nui.[ citation needed] She held both positions until her death.[ citation needed]


She and Kanaʻina had two sons. Their first son Davida, died young. [12] [13] Kekāuluohi gave birth to her second son on January 31, 1835. When a name for the prince was about to be selected, his mother chanted: "I luna, i luna, i lunalilo, the highest, the highest, the highest of all".[ citation needed] Although given the Christian name William Charles, he became King Lunalilo of Hawaii in 1873. Kekāuluohi died of influenza at Pohukaina, Honolulu, June 7, 1845. Initially buried in the Pohukaina Tomb, located on grounds of ʻIolani Palace, her remains were not amongst those transported in 1865 to the newly constructed Royal Mausoleum at Mauna ʻAla in the Nuʻuanu Valley. [14] [15]: 63  It isn't known if this was a mistake or oversight, but the indignant Lunalilo refused to bury his mother at the Royal Mausoleum and instead arrange her remains to buried at sea. [16]: 119  Her father's family line survives today through her cousin and namesake Miriam Auhea Kekāuluohi Crowningburg. [17] [18]

A girl's dormitory is named for her at Kamehameha Schools Kapalama Campus. [19]

See also


  1. ^ Haas 2016, p. 154.
  2. ^ Dibble 1843, p. 230.
  3. ^ Cumming 1883, p. 296.
  4. ^ Pukui, Elbert & Mookini 1974, p. 106.
  5. ^ Gast & Marin 1973, p. 324.
  6. ^ Luomala 1987, p. 26.
  7. ^ Liliuokalani 2013, p. 52.
  8. ^ Bingham 1848, p. 87.
  9. ^ a b de Freycinet 1978, p. 108.
  10. ^ Bingham 1848, pp. 533–534.
  11. ^ Taylor 1922, p. 373.
  12. ^ Bingham 1848, p. 80.
  13. ^ Gould 1874, p. 24.
  14. ^ Alexander, William DeWitt (1894). "The "Hale o Keawe" at Honaunau, Hawaii". Journal of the Polynesian Society. London: E. A. Petherick. 3: 159–161.
  15. ^ Stokes, John F. G. (1930). "Burial of Keawe". Hawaiian Journal of History. Honolulu: Hawaiian Historical Society: 63–72. hdl: 10524/961.
  16. ^ Young, Kanalu G. Terry (1998). Rethinking the Native Hawaiian Past. New York: Garland Publishing, Inc. ISBN  978-0-8153-3120-9.
  17. ^ Kapiikauinamoku (1956). "Peleuli II Brought Up In Kamehamehaʻs Court". in The Story of Maui Royalty. The Honolulu Advertiser, Ulukau, the Hawaiian Electronic Library. Retrieved June 5, 2014.
  18. ^ Kapiikauinamoku (1955). "Namahana III Assumes Commemorative Title". in The Story of Hawaiian Royalty. The Honolulu Advertiser, Ulukau, the Hawaiian Electronic Library. Retrieved June 5, 2014.
  19. ^ "Kekauluohi Dormitory: Kapalama Campus". official web site. Kamehameha Schools. Retrieved January 28, 2010.


Preceded by Kuhina Nui of the Hawaiian Islands
April 5, 1839 – June 7, 1845
Succeeded by