Hawai'i Chapter # 1 located at Hilo on the island of Hawai'i, was first instituted on June 3, 1899, being the first chapter located off-shore of the Continental United States and the second organized outside the borders of the United States. The formation of these chapters covered three different periods in the political history of Hawaii. The Kingdom of Hawai'i became a Provisional Government in 1893; Republic in 1894 then finally annexed to the United States in 1898. Hawaii Chapter # 1 was formed one year later.
Hawaiians are a festive and naturally hospitable people who have developed from many origins. The native Hawaiians, Caucasians, Chinese, Japanese,Filipino, Korean, Portuguese and many mixture and blends have caused Hawai'i to be termed "the melting pot of the Pacific".
Even at Hawaii's Eastern Star meetings, leis are often presented to honored guests. At Eastern Star installation many well wishers will present leis to the Worthy Matron and Worthy Patron. All first time visitors to Eastern Star in Hawaii are introduced and presented with a lei and greeted with an aloha poem toed to the lei and recited by a member. Each poem extends a greeting of love and the Golden Chain of Friendship.
I tradition, each island is represented by a color and a flower, but there are hundreds of varieties that are strung into leis. Leis are designed in various ways, from Orchids, Ginger blossoms, Pikake, Maunaloa, Carnations, Puakene Rose buds, ad the aile leaves which have a distinct aromatic fragrance sacred to Laka, goddess of hula. May Day is Lei Day in Hawaii, a colorful event celebrated with a Lei Day Queen and Princess, hulas and statewide lei competition.
The Island of Hawaii's, the Orchid Island or Big Island, flower is the ":Red Lehua" blossom which was sacred to Pele, the volcano goddess. According to Hawaiian lore, if you pick the Lehua flower on the way up to Kilauea Crater, Pele will be angry and send torrents of rain.
The Island of Maui, the Valley Island, is a dormant volcano, called Haleakala, "House of the Sun". The flower is the pink Loke Lai (Heavenly Rose)
Oahu, ,the Gathering Place, with the capital city and the metropolitan center of Honolulu, claims the only palace in the United States. Oahu's island flower is the golden-orange Ilima.
Kauai, the Garden Island, famous for the green seeds of Mokihana, a native tree values for its anise scent
Molokai, the Friendly Island, chose the silvery green leaves and clusters of small white flowers of the Kukui, candlenut tree, for their official lei
Lanai has chosen Kaunoa, the orange air plant for it's color and flower
Kaho'olawa has been designated the gray Hinahia, similar to spanish moss
Niihau, a privately owned island, is noted for the beautiful white Niihau shell leis
Our appreciation to Molly K.M. Chung, Deputy to the Most Worthy Grand Matron Virginia M. Painter in Hawaii, in 1992, for this wonderful information from and article she wrote in 1993.