Saturday, Dec. 9, 2023 |
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As its plaque indicates, the William Hyde Rice Monument at the end of Kipu Road was “Erected In Loving Memory By His Japanese Friends” on June 15, 1925, one year after Rice died. Its dedication ceremony occurred on July 23, 1926.
Held in high esteem by all who knew him, William Hyde Rice (1846-1924) was born at Punahou, O‘ahu, the only son of missionaries William Harrison and Mary Sophia Hyde Rice.
In 1854, the Rices moved to Kaua‘i, where William Hyde Rice became a rancher and purchased the Kipu ahupuaa from Princess Ruth Keelikolani in 1881. Over the years this land has been the site of Kipu (sugar) Plantation and Kipu Ranch, now managed by Robin Rice.
In 1891, Queen Liliuokalani appointed Rice Governor of Kaua‘i, and he served her in that capacity until the overthrow of 1893.
The dedication, which was presented by the Japanese of Kipu Plantation and Lihu‘e and was witnessed by about 700 people, took place at the monument.
Charles Keahi, pastor of Lihu‘e Hawaiian Church, opened the ceremony with an invocation. U. Watada then read a brief historical sketch of Rice’s life.
Next, an address in Japanese was given by H. Miwa, principal of Lihu‘e Japanese language school, which was followed by Mr. Murata’s reading of a paper in Japanese on the service of Mr. Rice.
Shortly thereafter, Charles Ishii presented the monument and little Helen Rice, daughter of Sheriff William Henry Rice, unveiled it.
Following the unveiling, Philip L. Rice accepted the monument as a gift, the benediction was given by Rev. Okamoto, pastor of Waimea Japanese Christian church, and refreshments were served.
The monument was designed by Charles Ishii and Fukunaga, and was built by Fukunaga, Hashizumi and Oya with stones gathered near the Koloa Catholic church.
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