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Kamehameha Royal Family
Daguerreotype, 1/6 plate
Cowan's Auctions, Inc
Auction 13 June 2014, "American History", Lot: 17
Previously unknown, sixth plate, silver and gold-tinted daguerreotype portrait of the Kamehameha royal family of Hawaii, including one reigning king and two future kings of the Kamehameha dynasty. The family members are identified as follows: Kamehameha III (center) and his wife, Queen Kalama (left); Kamehameha IV (top left), Kamehameha V (top right), and their sister, Victoria Kamamalu (right). Housed in full, thermoplastic case.
This appears to be a period copy made from a sixth plate daguerreotype portrait produced by Hugo Stangenwald, ca 1853, which is housed in the collection of the Bernice P. Bishop Museum in Honolulu, HI, and was featured in the February 1980 exhibition entitled Hawaii: The Royal Isles. The daguerreotype is published as item no. 228 (p. 202) in the accompanying exhibition catalog, printed by the Bishop Museum Press, Honolulu, 1980.
Kamehameha III (1813-1854), King of Hawaii (1825-1854), was unable to produce a royal heir of his own and decided to adopt his nephew as his son and successor to the throne, Prince Albert Liholiho (1834-1863), who became Kamehameha IV, reigning as king from 1855-1863. Liholiho's older brother, Prince Lot Kapuaiwa (1830-1872), succeeded the throne as Kamehameha V, the last in the Kamehameha line of succession, and reigned from 1863 through 1872. Although Kamehameha V named his only sister, Princess Victoria Kamamalu (1838-1866) (pictured at right in the daguerreotype) as heir apparent, she died as a result of illness at the age of 28. Nevertheless, she is considered by some to be the first female monarch of Hawaii.