[Photo: View of Hilo town looking towards Kamehameha Ave.
on Waianuenue St.; Hilo, Hawaiʻi.; Ca 1947. SP 120087.]
[Photo: Aerial view of Niuliʻi; Kohala, Hawaiʻi; Ca 1930. SP 73629.]
[Photo: Waterfront of Kailua-Kona, Hawaii, with
Mokuʻaikaua Church (left) and Huliheʻe Palace
(right); Kailua-Kona, Hawaiʻi.; Ca 1885. SP 77418.]
[Photo: Waipio Valley and the Hāmākua Coast with
view of taro fields and freshwater streams; hala
tree and ti leaf in immediate foreground;
Waimanu, Waipiʻo, Hawaiʻi.; ca. 1930 SP 86709.]
[Photo: Road to Puna; Puna, Hawaiʻi.; Ca 1930. SP 96551.]
[Photo: Kaʻū coast looking south; Kaʻū, Hawaiʻi; SP 200214.]
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No Hilo ‘oe

Happy Mele Monday!

Today’s featured mele speaks about the beauty of Hawaiʻi Island and highlights notable characteristics associated with each district.

(Mele translation by Mary Kawena Pukui)

Contributor – Theodore Kelsey, Hilo, Hawai‘i.

No Hilo ‘oe   You are from Hilo

No Hilo hea?   What Hilo?

No Hilo i ka ua kani lehua   Hilo of the Kanilehua rain

No Puna ‘oe, etc   You are from Puna

No Puna i ka paia ‘ala i ka hala   Puna of the fragrant hala groves

No Ka‘ū ‘oe, etc.   You are from Ka‘ū

No ka wai hū mai o Kauila   Of the gushing water of Kauila

No Kona ‘oe etc.   You are from Kona

No Kona Kailua i ka paka ona   Kailua in Kona where potent tobacco grows

No Kohala ‘oe etc.   You are from Kohala

No Kohala i ka makani ‘Āpa‘apa‘a   Kohala of the ‘Āpa‘apa‘a wind

No Hāmākua ‘oe etc.   You are from Hāmākua

No Hāmākua wau i ke ‘ala ‘ūlili   Of Hāmākua where the sheer cliff trails are

[Call Number: MS SC Roberts 4.2 , Pg. 82-83]

Mele are an invaluable primary resource for Hawaiian scholarship and cultural connection. The Welo Hou: Building Connections to the Roberts Mele Collection project, funded in part by the Institute for Museum and Library Services, will improve the digitization, indexing, and accessibility of a unique and treasured collection of mele dating from pre-Western contact to the early 1900s. This pilot project will serve as a model for improved access to and increased engagement with the Bishop Museum Library & Archives’ other mele collections.

Welo Hou, or to unfurl once again, aims to provide more opportunities for researchers of all levels of Hawaiian language and cultural fluency to access the Roberts Collection with ease, and honors the connections between Hawaiian voices of the past and our community of the present.

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