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Island History

Kaua‘i missionary Reverend Peter Johnson Gulick (1796-1877) was born in New Jersey, graduated from Princeton College and Princeton Theological Seminary, and sailed for Hawai‘i accompanied by his wife, Fanny (1798-1883), with the Third Company of Protestant missionaries aboard the “Parthian” out of Boston. He arrived in Honolulu on March 28, 1828 after 148 days at sea.

The Gulicks were then stationed at Waimea, Kaua‘i, where they lived in a grass house provided by Gov. Kaikioewa. But within two or three years, Reverend Gulick began building a new house made of coral sandstone that was hauled by oxcart from a ledge located makai about a mile away. Interestingly enough, Gulick paid his Hawaiian laborers partly in goats, then a rare and apparently desired commodity on Kaua‘i.

This house was likely not completed by the time the Gulicks were transferred to Koloa in 1835 to found a new mission, and it was thereafter used by Hawaiians in need of shelter until missionary Reverend George Rowell arrived at Waimea in 1846.

Rowell rebuilt the house and lived in it with his family for many years. He was buried on the property in 1884.

Since then, the house has been renovated several times and occupied over the years by sugar plantation families and skilled plantation workers — its basement was also once used as Waimea’s jail.

Today the Gulick-Rowell house, located on Huakai Road, the only remaining missionary house on “Missionary Row” in Waimea, is owned by Kikiaola Land Co. and is unoccupied.

The Gulicks were also stationed at Kaluaaha, Molokai (1843-1846), and Waialua, Maui (1846-1857). Rev. Gulick later served in Honolulu as a trustee of Punahou School.

In 1874, Rev. and Mrs. Gulick moved to Kobe, Japan to live with their missionary son Orramel. Both died in Japan.

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