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Waioli Mission House, Hanalei

#10 of 16 in Museums in Kauai
Specialty Museum · Hidden Gem · Museum
The Waioli Mission District at Hanalei Bay, on Route 560 along the north shore of the island of Kauai, is the site of a historic mission. The first permanent missionaries to the area arrived in 1834, and the district was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1973.The building is known as Wai‘oli Mission House and is now a museum open to the public.DescriptionWai oli means "joyful water" or "singing river" in the Hawaiian language. In 1824, after the royal yacht Haʻaheo o Hawaiʻi ("Pride of Hawaii) ran aground in the bay, a crowd gathered for an attempt at salvage. Reverend Hiram Bingham took the opportunity to preach a sermon.Around 1832, a thatched hut was built in this area for the missionaries to Hawaii from the American Board of Commissioners for Foreign Missions who would visit from other missions in the Hawaiian islands, such as the one at Waimea, Kauai. Early supporters were island governor Kaikioewa and Queen Dowager Deborah Kapule. The first permanent pastor was Reverend William Patterson Alexander (1805–1884), with his wife Mary Ann McKinney Alexander (1810–1888) who arrived in 1834. By then the original temporary structure had to be rebuilt. Alexander also started building a wood framed house about 1835. Their son Samuel Thomas Alexander was born here.
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TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.5
28 reviews
  • Hanalei's iconic green church is one of the town's favorite landmarks. What many people miss is the Waioli Mission House hidden in a grove behind the church. The Mission House was the parsonage for...  more »
  • Well worth visiting. Private tour with Roger. Turn up & ring the bell & he appears. Fascinating place, very well looked after. Informative & interesting tour. Recommend.  more »
  • The gardener gave us a helpful overview of the history of the church and early missions history. Very interesting.
  • I found out that my great grandfather William Werner is buried there.

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