m. jules remey : redwood floatsam on oahu, 1839
Our stay at Kaneohe, and also on the eastern part of the island, was necessarily short; we could not, however, but notice, that most of the inhabitants on the eastern end of the island were much more degraded, and exhibited far less evidence of improvement than any we saw on the other parts of the island; a fact calling for our sympathy and pity, and for our endeavors to enlighten and elevate them.
At almost the
extreme eastern point of the island we observed two immense logs of the
Spanish cedar, which had been thrown upon the island by the waves.
The natives were cutting them up with pit saws, for building purposes.
Having been wafted to these islands from the western coast of America, their voyage could not have been less than 2,500 miles. How long they were in performing it, there is no possibility of knowing.
They were considerably perforated with worm holes as large as a man's finger; and exhibited the appearance of having been long in the water.
Their arrival here will not appear so wonderful, when we reflect that these islands lie directly in the track of the trade winds, which blow from nearly the same point of the compass for months together, and indeed for the greater part of the year.
Their happening to land upon the island, is, indeed, surprising, as it is but a mere speck, compared with the vast extent of the Pacific over which they passed, and which surrounds us on every side.
And while such facts may be adduced in favor of the theory that Polynesia was originally peopled from the American continent; the fact that a Japanese junk, also, was thrown upon the same island from the opposite direction, the result of some accident, will be adduced also, by those ...
Contributions of a Venerable Savage to the Ancient History of the Hawaiian Islands.
Translated from the French by William T. Bingham.
Museum of the Boston Society of Natural History,
Press of A. A. Kingman, Berkley Street, [Boston], 1868.