E Komo Mai!!
Throughout the age of sail, black hands maneuvered white sails traversing the ocean waterways. Many black men used the oceans as their underground railroads. When the first black men arrived in the Hawaiian islands in the late 1700s and early 1800s, many people of African ancestry came to Hawai`i aboard merchant and whaling ships. These individuals brought with them skills including, tailoring, barbering, masonry, carpentry. Others became entrepreneurs, musicians who formed the first King's Band. Some acting as administrators, interpreters for the Monarchy and advisors to King Kamehameha I, who welcomed black men from around the world to the Hawaiian Islands. Nantucket Quaker seamen also made the whaling industry a thriving business. At a time when Africans were still being sold into slavery, Yankee whalers signedon African Portuguese from the Cape Verde Islands off the coast of Africa, blacks from Caribbean, and black Americans as seamen, whose servie took them across the face of the earth, across the Pacific Ocean and into the Hawaiian Islands. Since the 1770s, the islands have been home to people of African descent for two centuries.