In writing my recollections of Her Majesty, Queen Liliuokalani, I am presenting some informal and intimate sketches which reveal a little-known side of the Queen's some informal and intimate sketches which reveal a little-known side of the Queen's life and character.
Only one or two of the recollections recorded here previous to 1898 were my own personal experiences, since it was not until after annexation that I had the honor of calling the Queen my "friend."
It was my privilege to have known the Queen some thirty years, from the time I was eight years old until her death in 1917. I first met the Queen through my mother, Mary Duncan Cook, who was a close friend of the Queen's from her childhood days. Later, when I was a young woman, I became well acquainted with Her Majesty.
For those unfamiliar with the history of the Hawaiian Islands, a short outline of the main events up to Queen Liliuokalani's accession to the throne of Hawaii will give some understanding of the situation with which she was confronted at that time. It was the long continued threat to the independence of her kingdom which affected her most deeply.
This account is written from the Hawaiian viewpoint of that day. In reading these pages, it must be kept in mind that we Hawaiians had no quarrel with the United States of America. The quarrel was with those of America's citizens who lived among us in Hawaii. They claimed a "dual-citizenship," and, gradually gaining power in the Hawaiian government, finally overthrow the monarchy. This forced the Hawaiians to "drink the bitter water," and submit to a form of government foreign to their way of life and background. They valued their independence and revered their sovereigns.
Although bitter at the dethronement of our Queen and greatly opposed to annexation, Hawaiians today may be counted among the most loyal citizens of the United States of America.
Bernice Piilani Irwin
When I read this piece awhile ago, (which I forgot about) I was upset. Today, I am still upset with blatant 'words in mouth' so to speak.