Island History for Friday, September 23, 2011

Paul H. Townsley (1889-1956), the office manager of Lihu‘e Plantation from 1929 to 1954, was commissioned a colonel in the Army during WWII and charged with the responsibility of selecting, organizing and commanding a local militia to supplement the Armed Forces and National Guard in defense of Kaua‘i.

Townsley’s efforts resulted in the formation of the Kaua‘i Volunteers, a regimental-sized militia composed of three battalions numbering about 2,400 men, 90 percent of whom were Filipinos employed by Kaua‘i’s sugar plantations.

Their duties included beach defense, guard duty, and scouting in support of regular Army soldiers unfamiliar with Kaua‘i’s rugged interior.

One of Townsley’s officers was Captain Alan Faye Sr., whose mounted troops patrolled the highlands.

Faye’s men, mainly Portuguese and Hawaiian paniolo, were expert pig hunters and Faye saw no reason not to integrate military maneuvers and pig hunting — with pigs being the enemy.

In the morning, two of Faye’s paniolo on horseback with their best tracking dogs would take the lead as scouts to locate pigs. 

Following the scouts at some distance would be a mounted squad of eight men and the remainder of the hunting dogs. Their duty was to support the scouts and act as liaison with the main troop riding behind them.

Faye personally led the main troop, which carried camp equipment on spare horses and mules.

As the hunt progressed, Faye would receive dispatches from the front such as, “Captain Faye, sir, a large force of the enemy is heading toward Halemanu!”

Once the enemy was given chase, most hunters would rush forward in pursuit, yet a few would form a rearguard and bring up the pack horses and mules.

After a successful day of maneuvers, Faye would issue his report to regimental headquarters: “Met the enemy, captured him, ate him.”

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