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Our History

In 1888, King Kalakaua issued a royal charter, commissioning a magazine. Then titled Paradise of the Pacific, this publication became HONOLULU Magazine, making it the oldest magazine west of the Mississippi.




Paradise of the Pacific, the predecessor to HONOLULU, honors the military in the Islands with a special armed forces issue, including a financial and personnel breakdown. The combined military branches in Hawaii, major contributors to the Island economy, spent a total of $168 million in 1949 ($1.5 billion in 2010 dollars). “In order of payroll importance to the Territory, the Pearl Harbor Navy Shipyard ranks first, with an annual payroll of $10 million,” notes Paradise (this number is $89 million in 2009 dollars). The shipyard boasted 3,500 employees, both active duty and civilian; the total number of people in military-related jobs was 42,323.


On America’s Independence Day in 1960, 30 new 50-star flags were unfurled over the nation’s Capitol. That same day, the 50-star flag stamp went on sale at the post office in Honolulu. “The fiftieth star, bright with new emphasis on democratic freedoms, is Hawaii’s statehood star,” observes Paradise of the Pacific. “Hawaii grew to its unique stature as the world’s outstanding showcase of harmony among unrelated races of culturally divergent people.” Over the years, commemorative stamps were issued in celebration of the growing number of U.S. states; the flag with its 50 white stars was the last. In 1960, U.S. postal stamps cost only 4 cents. 



“Daniel Ken Inouye is Hawaii’s elder statesman, having served in Washington for as long as Hawaii has been a state,” writes HONOLULU. By 1985, Inouye had served in Congress the length of seven presidencies. Who was the most impressive? “Jimmy Carter,” replied Inouye. “He was well read and obviously did much homework.” Inouye also had respect for the then current president, Ronald Reagan. However, Inouye did not agree with the “Star Wars” plan in which the president proposed to use space-based systems to protect the U.S. from nuclear missiles. “If he believes that the Russians will not respond to that, then he’s a fool,” Inouye said.




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Honolulu Magazine April 2017
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