JUNE 28, 1906


Born in Honolulu on February 15, 1842, Bush was of mixed Native Hawaiian and Caucasian descent.   King Kalākaua first appointed him Royal Governor of the island of Kauaʻi (1877), next to his Privy Council (1878), and finally to the House of Nobles (1880).  In 1886, he was made special envoy to Samoa in an attempt to form a Polynesian alliance.  However, on June 30, 1887, Kalākaua was forced to sign the “Bayonet Constitution,” limiting the monarch’s powers, and Bush returned to Hawaii.  From 1889 to 1896, he published two Hawaiian language newspapers and, in the 1890 and 1892 elections, Bush was elected to the house of representatives for Oʻahu.  Previously a monarchist, he lost confidence in Queen Liliʻuokalani and advocated a liberal democratic republic.  He became the first president of the Hawaiian National Liberal Party in 1892, but lost control of the party to Joseph Nāwahī after the 1892 elections.  After that, his star waned.  He died from a stroke, and was buried in Makiki Cemetery. 

Source:  "John E. Bush Passes Off," The Hawaiian Gazette, 6/29/1906, p.1.  Retrieved 7/4/2019,  https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn83025121/1906-06-29/ed-1/seq-1/ 
Photo:  Author unknown.  Date:  Pre-1906.  Public Domain in U.S.:  Pre 1/1/1925.  Public Domain elsewhere where copyright term is author’s life plus 70 years or less.

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