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MARKER DATABASE
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Kawaihae in Hawaii County, Hawaii — Hawaiian Island Archipelago (Pacific Ocean)
 

Pu'ukohola Heiau

A Sacred Place Since Prehistoric Times

 
 
Pu'ukohola Heiau Marker image. Click for full size.
By Don Morfe, November 9, 2008
1. Pu'ukohola Heiau Marker
Inscription. A heiau (temple) at Pu置kohola was built long before Kamehameha started construction on the heiau that you see. This showed great vision and strategy on the part of the kahuna (priests). The heiau was physically very prominent and imposing on the landscape, adding to its spiritual power.

Only the male kahuna (priests), male ali段 (chiefs) and other royalty were allowed to enter the heiau. Women of all status were forbidden entry into the heiau proper. The structure was designed so that no one could see into it from the land side nor look up into it from the water. Wooden fencing along the edge of the platform further blocked visibility into it. Early written accounts also describe numerous structures and large carved images on the platform.

(Inscription next to the photo in the lower left) An 1882 photograph of Pu置kohola Heiau looking southeast, from a study of volcanoes done by Clarence E. Dutton, U.S. Geological Survey.

(Inscription below the photo in the upper right) The heiau is about the same shape and size now as when it was constructed by Kamehamela in 1790-91. The platform footprint is 200 feet long and 80 feet wide, and the stone walls surrounding it are anywhere from 10 to 20 feet high depending on the ground surface. This survey, drawn in 1869, shows the condition of the heiau 50 years after
The ruins of Pu'ukohola Heiau "Temple on the Hill of the Whale" image. Click for full size.
By Don Morfe, November 9, 2008
2. The ruins of Pu'ukohola Heiau "Temple on the Hill of the Whale"
the death of Kamehameha.
 
Erected by National Park Service-United States Department of the Interior.
 
Location. 20° 1.662′ N, 155° 49.368′ W. Marker is in Kawaihae, Hawaii, in Hawaii County. Marker is on Kawaihae Road (SR270). Touch for map. The marker is on the grounds of the National Historic Site. Marker is in this post office area: Kamuela HI 96743, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 9 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Pu'ukohola Heiau National Historic Site (approx. 0.2 miles away); Puakō Petroglyph Archaeological District (approx. 5.5 miles away); The Waikoloa Petroglyph Field (approx. 8.5 miles away); Kamehameha III (approx. 8.6 miles away); Kamehameha II (approx. 8.6 miles away); Kamehameha I (approx. 8.6 miles away); Kamehameha IV (approx. 8.6 miles away); Kamehameha V (approx. 8.6 miles away).
 
Categories. AnthropologyChurches, Etc.
 
This marker-A Sanctuary for Humpback Whales in near the Pu'ukohola Heiau Marker image. Click for full size.
By Don Morfe, November 9, 2008
3. This marker-A Sanctuary for Humpback Whales in near the Pu'ukohola Heiau Marker
Pu'ukohola Heiau overlooking the Pacific Ocean image. Click for full size.
By Don Morfe, November 9, 2008
4. Pu'ukohola Heiau overlooking the Pacific Ocean
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on February 20, 2014, by Don Morfe of Baltimore, Md 21234. This page has been viewed 327 times since then and 34 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on February 20, 2014, by Don Morfe of Baltimore, Md 21234. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.
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