Come join us for this virtual “brown bag” to learn more about the work of Hula Preservation Society and find out what kinds of resources are available for research in the HPS Archive. In 2017, we became a partner with Papakilo Database to share resources online through this important repository of historically and culturally significant materials. We look forward to talking story with Kale Hannahs, Database Manager, as Papakilo celebrates 10 years of service! This event is free. To be in the Zoom room, please visit www.oha.org/papakilowebinar to register. You may also tune in on Facebook via the Office Of Hawaiian Affairs page.
Come join us as we talk-story with Kale Hannahs, Papakilo Database Manager, about the 20-year journey of HPS and the diverse resources HPS has made available online to date. We have been a collaborator with Papakilo since 2017, and HPS was the first partner to independently upload and manage our own resources in the repository. In this first of two programs, we will focus on our foundational materials—the kupuna oral histories—and share what is available online for research. This event is free. To be in the Zoom room, please visit www.oha.org/papakilowebinar to register. You may also tune in on Facebook via the Office Of Hawaiian Affairs page.
A new venture during the pandemic has been HPS’s participation in the Kekaulike Internship Program through Native Hawaiian Student Services, University of Hawaiʻi. In summer 2021, we welcomed two haumāna from Kapiʻolani Community College, Tre Zamora and Rain Abero. As students in the Media Arts program, they will be helping develop strategies and content for HPS’s social media presence! Each brings their own unique specialties and skill sets to the table, and we are happy to provide them an opportunity to build new skills while we can support them in gaining more career experience as well as learninging more about their Hawaiian culture as they work with our kūpuna’s oral history footage. Be sure to follow HPS on Facebook & Instagram to see regular updates about the work they are doing with us.
In 2020, Hula Preservation Society celebrated our 20th anniversary. Leading up to the big year, we were excited to try and create a special commemorative t-shirt for the milestone. While all of our big, public celebrations were cancelled due to the pandemic, we told ourselves, “We have to do the tee!” And we did! The design honors our core connections to kūpuna, hula, and our inspirational founder, Auntie Nona Beamer. Reflecting back on the last 20 years, we felt strongly, “E mālama i ka hulu mākua,” from ʻŌlelo Noʻeau (wise saying) #601. In Hawaiʻi, hulu (feathers) were crafted into prized, valued adornments passed on from generation to generation. HPS cherishes those who have come before for their preserverance and passionate efforts to preserve and perpetuate for us today and for generations to come. And if you knew Auntie Nona, you’ll spock the pulelehua (butterfly) in the design, too! Go to the HPS Store to purchase your own. They’re still available!
Wow, 2020! What a year. It wasn’t exactly the 20th anniversary we had hoped for at HPS, but it was a strong reminder to count our blessings and be grateful for our kūpuna and their fortitude and dedication. The journey was inspired by Auntie Nona Beamer’s natural curiosity and zest for learning! She wanted to have conversations with fellow hula folks “of the age” like her (she was 76 when we started!), and we truly had no idea what the subsequent years would hold for HPS with our elders. The first official oral history was in December, 2000, in Waimea, Hawaiʻi Island, with Auntie Queenie Ventura Dowsett. Auntie Nona and Maile Loo had seen her speak at the Hawaii Theatre in conjunction with a screening of the 1941 Hollywood movie she appeared in, “Bird of Paradise.” Through her sharing about being with and learning from the one and only, ʻIolani Luahine, Auntie and Maile said to each other, “We need to go talk with her!” And so it began. Auntie Nona and Auntie Queenie had led separate lives in hula for many decades by that point, and this sitdown at Auntie Queenieʻs homestead was the first time theyʻd gotten together to talk-story. What a time it was. We stayed for two days! Hard to leave when you’re in full view of majestic Mauna Kea.
When the pandemic came to the islands in early 2000, HPS had to go into “reserve” mode like everyone else and immediately change our operations. We could no longer safely have our kūpuna come in and visit or volunteer, and our team began to work mostly dispersed. Our regular HPS Archive research visits and inquiries went online. As the year continued and onsite visits were still out of the question, we “pivoted” (everyone’s favorite word, right?) and held our first-ever virtual Archive Tour for the Special Libraries Association student chapter. It took three of us in three different locations in the Office and Archive to pull it off, but we did. Here’s a photo of us with the university students on the zoom call. We welcome your research inquiries and visits (virtually), so reach out and connect with us through email!