She was the last descendant of the ancient rulers of Hawaii. Princess Abigail Kawananakoa died on Monday at the age of 96.
Hawaiian royalty is now extinct. This Monday, December 12, 2022, the Palace announced, in a press release, the death of Princess Abigail Kawananakoa, the last identified representative of the royal line of Hawaii, which occurred the day before. She was 96 years old. If no cause of death has been advanced, the site “Hawaii News Now” specified that the princess was struggling with fragile health.
She was the ‘last ali’i’
Abigail Kawananakoa had no official title, but her ancestors ruled Hawaii until they were overthrown by settlers in the late 19th century and she was the heiress. She was referred to by some on the island as the “last ali’i”—the Hawaiian word for “royal family member.” The statement released by Iolani Palace, the Sovereigns’ historic home, said: “Hawaii mourns the loss of Her Royal Highness Princess Abigail Kinoiki Kekaulike Kawananakoa, who passed away peacefully last night at her home in Nu’uanu, along with her wife Veronica. Gail Kawananakoa by his side. “Abigail will be remembered for her love of Hawaii and its people. (…) I will miss her with all my heart”, indicated this one, quoted by this press release.
Hawaii Governor Josh Green ordered the flags to be flown at half-mast until Sunday evening. “Jamie (his wife, editor’s note) and I are deeply saddened by the loss of Princess Abigail Kinoiki Kekaulike Kawananakoa,” he said, adding, “Abigail has borne the brunt of her position with dignity and humility, enriched the lives of all she touched, and like so many ali’i who preceded her, she forever leaves a devoted legacy to her people.
Former monarchy, Hawaii is today the 50th state of the USA
The great-granddaughter of an Irish businessman who made money from Hawaiian sugar plantations, Abigail, born April 23, 1926, was also the great-grandniece of Liliʻuokalani, Hawaii’s last ruler. So she was adopted by the royal family at the age of 5 with the aim that she would be the heiress in the event of the restoration of the monarchy, more than three decades after the fall of the latter. .
Unified into a single kingdom in the early 19th century under the Kamehameha dynasty, the Hawaiian archipelago traded independently with other nations until its annexation and occupation in 1898 by the United States. In 1959 it became the 50th US state.