The public now has free access to an online library intended to preserve significant cultural and historical Hawaiian information dating to the 1800s.
The Office of Hawaiian Affairs partnered with several other entities, including the Bishop Museum and Kumu Pono Associates to meld several databases containing land and government records, genealogy indexes and historic Hawaiian language newspapers into one resource called the Papakilo Database.
The project has taken several years and at least $400,000 from OHA alone. Those involved said it was a cost-effective effort.
"So folks that need to do historical research, like from the neighbor islands for example, you have to literally fly to Oahu to get some of this research done. Because the documents are digitized and now online, no longer will you have to do that," OHA Chief Executive Officer Clyde Namuo said.
The project will continue to be a work in progress. As more information is digitized and becomes available, OHA officials said it will be added to the database.
Officials plan to add World War I service records and some statistics from 1826-1929 later this year.
Papakilo Database Partners: Awaiaulu Bishop Museum DL Consulting Hawaii State Archives Hoolaupai Kaiwakiloumoku Hawaiian Cultural Center Kumu Pono Associates The Nature Conservancy Ulukau