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Kanaka: The Untold Story of Hawaiian Pioneers in British Columbia and the Pacific Northwest

Tom Koppel

Softcover; 152 pp.

Mention Hawaiʻi and most North Americans picture palm trees and beaches. It is difficult to imagine that people would willingly leave the sunny islands of Polynesia to live in British Columbia and the Pacific Northwest. Yet during the nineteenth century, hundreds of Hawaiians did just that, mainly to serve the Hudson’s Bay Company at fur trading posts from Oregon to Alaska. By the 1880s Kanakas (the Hawaiian word for “human beings”) were living in the Vancouver area, Victoria, the Gulf Islands, the San Juan Islands and in scattered communities along the coast of British Columbia, Washington, Oregon and California.

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