The following nomination forms are the product of countless hours of effort by the members of the Historic Honokaa Town Project, in collaboration with other academics, property owners, and concerned members of the local community. Not only the culmination of extensive research and field work, these nominations, and those like them, are part of a growing catalogue of historical knowledge that manifest one of the most effective methods for the preservation of our architectural and cultural heritage. We are committed to seeing this list grow in the future, and we welcome the interest and involvement of those who would likewise seek to preserve this unique place that remains noteworthy in Hawaiian, American, and indeed even world history.
Though it didn't even have a name when it opened its doors in 1912, the Hotel Honokaa Club was quick to become a center of the town's social scene, serving as a watering hole for cowboys and soldiers alike. It played host to a number of the town's more colorful episodes - and characters.
Built in 1927, the Ferreira Building is a quintessential example of “Plantation” architecture common in Hawaii between 1890 and 1940. Since its construction the building has hosted a number of businesses that have been vital to the local community, and it remains an active commercial center to this day.
Honokaa was once home to three movie theaters, but only one has survived. Among the largest buildings in town, then and now, The People's Theatre was built in 1930 and has perservered as a town icon and cultural locus, where residents and visitors can still enjoy both classic and contemporary movies.
While it has undergone renovation inside, the front of the Seishiro Hasegawa Ltd. Store Building looks out on Mamane Street just as it did when it was constructed in 1937. The original dry goods store was immigrant-owned and significant for the role it played in serving the needs of plantation workers as they sought to break free of the "company" system.
The rich history of Honokaa extends well beyond the life of individual structures. Over the years the town and its surroundings have been alternately the center of cultural change in the islands and a reflection of broad globalization. Click below to explore the context in which these nominations are noteworthy, and why much more in Honokaa is, as well.