In Honor of Kamehameha Day, Let’s Go to the Movies

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In honor of Kamehameha Day, let’s go to the movies! Sit back and enjoy a Youtube home video of Oahu during the summer of 1941.

Fellow librarian, Courtenay O’Connell of Palm Harbor, Florida posted a video titled “Summer in Hawaii in 1941” on youtube. The url is: ( There’s no audio and the quality of the video is fair at best, but it’s such a great snapshot of life on Oahu in 1941.


The home movies were shot by George and Frances O’Connell. Her Uncle George was stationed on the USS Salt Lake City during the war. Courtenay is an active member of a Salt Lake City group of Florida and is actively doing research on the men of that ship. If you have any information to share with her, her email address

The first scene is of Hilo Hattie doing a comic hula. (For more information about “Hilo Hattie,” who was Clarissa “Clara” Haili Nelson, check out wikipedia. It has a short article on her. For a more extensive profile, go to Clarissa Haili Nelson is buried in the Punchbowl Cemetery, Section U, Grave 653-A; she was interred on Dec. 17, 1979. There is also an archived column on Hilo Hattie at the Hawaii Reporter.)

The next scenes are workers trimming trees, then children playing, views of East Oahu in the area of Hawaii Kai, Rabbit Island and the Blow Hole. Then you see the Kamehameha Day Parade, the men’s and women’s Hawaii Civic Organizations, bands, and riders. The end of the video includes views of Diamond Head, the fishing fleet, and Fort Armstrong.

Happy Kamehameha Day.

Dorothea “Dee” Buckingham is the author of Women of World War II Hawaii  in the Hawaii Reporter at