Hawaii, King Kamehameha Day
King Kamehameha I statue at the Capitol Visitors Center is decorated with leis.
American sculptor Thomas R. Gould depicted Kamehameha in his regal garb, including a helmet of rare feathers attached to woven plant fibers. The gilded cloak is based on one that Kamehameha's subjects made for the king by weaving yellow feathers of native birds into a fine mesh net. The sandals, although not historically accurate, suggest the type of footwear that Kamehameha would have worn. The spear in his left hand symbolizes the ability to defend oneself and one's nation; it is also a reminder that Kamehameha ended the wars among the Hawaiian people. His right hand is extended in a gesture of aloha, the traditional spirit of friendly greeting.
Hundreds gathered at the U.S. Capitol in D.C. to celebrate Hawaii’s monarch, King Kamehameha on Sunday, June 11, 2017 at the U.S. Capitol Building Visitors Center Emancipation Hall. The 48th annual event was celebrated to coincide with King Kamehameha Day celebrations in Hawaii. It is meant to honor the King’s legacy of uniting the islands, establishing the Kingdom of Hawaii in 1810. This year’s theme was “I Mua! E Na Poki`i, a inu i ka wai ‘awa‘awa,” which means, “Forward my young brothers and sisters, and drink of the bitter waters of battle, there is no turning back until victory is secured.” The event also included hula performed by halau from Maryland, Virginia and Washington, D.C. (Halau Nohona Hawai?i) (Photo by Jeff Malet)