From Our Files

HONOLULU Magazine and Paradise of the Pacific, chronicling the Islands since 1888.

Aug. 1924: “Moanalua Gardens, just westward of Honolulu, have for over a generation been the delight of islanders and travelers alike,” writes Paradise of the Pacific, predecessor to HONOLULU Magazine. “The property of Samuel Mills Damon, this tropical private park of remarkable beauty and wonderful variety has always been open for the public.” Even after Damon, one of Hawai’i’s largest landowners, died on July 1, 1924, his will ensured that Moanalua Gardens, pictured at right, would remain open to the public.



Aug. 1934: President Franklin D. Roosevelt has wrapped up his one-week tour of Hawai’i. “His itinerary demanded an almost breathless circle of the Island,” writes Paradise of the Pacific. “From the time he appeared in the morning on the deck of the Houston … until he stepped out of his automobile late in the afternoon at the entrance to the Royal Hawaiian hotel, President Roosevelt wore his famous smile, graciously waved his Panama in response to every greeting from the crowd and in many other ways demonstrated that he was continuing to have the ‘time of his life.'” In the photo above, Roosevelt plants a kukui tree at a ceremony on the capitol grounds.


Aug. 1954: Paradise of the Pacific profiles singer, composer, musician and bandleader Alvin Kaleolani Isaacs, photo at left. Among the more than 300 songs Isaacs wrote in his lifetime are the comic “No Huhu” and the lilting “Nalani.” “Doris Duke became the world’s wealthiest song plugger after hearing the latter,” writes Paradise. “In 1948 she gave a party in Hawai’i and invited Nat King Cole, who was vacationing, to sing a few numbers. Miss Duke showed Cole a songsheet of ‘Nalani’ and upon returning to the Mainland he recorded the song for Capitol. It received rave notices.”


Aug. 1989: “Nothing like this has ever occurred before in Hawai’i,” writes HONOLULU Magazine. “From Mililani Town to ‘Ewa Beach-once the land of cane and quiet plantation towns-the ‘Ewa Plain is undergoing a transformation that will leave the last of this historic region’s plantation homes sitting quaintly as quiet reminders to a vanished past.” Billions of dollars have been invested to create O’ahu’s “second city,” which includes the first business buildings in Kapolei, the opening of the Kö ‘Olina Resort and the construction of thousands of new homes. In the photo below, the new homes of Soda Creek, the first phase of ‘Ewa by Gentry, have sprung up amid cane fields. Prices for these homes ranged from $115,000 to $150,000 (about $168,000 to $219,000 in today’s dollars).