Heroine of Hawaiian People Honored

Abigail Kuaihelani Maipinepine Campbell, for whom the Kuaihelani Learning Center for ʻIke Hawaiʻi is named, was honored on Nov. 1, 2018, exactly 110 years after her passing.

The event at Kuaihelani Learning Center was part of Punahou’s ʻIke Hawaiʻi speaker series, Pūko’a Kani ‘Āina, which celebrated influential Hawaiian women in 2018. The space serves as the campus center for Hawaiian Studies, as well as a creative learning center for the seventh grade.

Alice Flanders ’52 Guild, Campbell’s great-granddaughter, spoke at the event. Draped in lei made from flowers grown on campus, she shared stories of her great-grandmother, who is acknowledged as a heroine of the Hawaiian people for helping gather thousands of women’s signatures in 1893 in an attempt to restore Queen Lili’uokalani to the throne and protest the 1898 annexation of Hawai’i.

Guild is a pioneering businesswoman and longtime leader in efforts to restore and preserve ‘Iolani Palace and is a past recipient of the Punahou Alumni Association Charles S. Judd Jr. ’38 Humanitarian Award. Guild’s mother, Muriel Macfarlane (1926) Flanders, was a noted O’ahu philanthropist.

During an emotional moment, Guild described the discovery of the documents of signatures gathered by Campbell. “When [Hawaiian author and scholar] Noenoe Silva entered my office at ‘Iolani Palace in 1996 and showed me photocopies of petitions with my great-grandmother’s signature on every page, I believed I was the first member of the Campbell family to learn of the existence of the Kūʻē Petitions and of Kuaihelani’s role in attaining the signatures that could have saved the Hawaiian nation, if history had taken a turn,” she told attendees.