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Mission Houses Museum

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Mission Houses Museum, Honolulu Hawaii

The Mission Houses Museum located in downtown Honolulu on King Street, was established in 1920 by the Hawaii Mission Children's Society. The museum was established on the 100th anniversary of the arrival of the first christian missionaries in Hawaii. The Mission Houses museum collects, stores, preserves, and interprets document, artifacts, and other records of Hawaii's Mission period ranging from 1820 to about 1863.

The collection holds over 3,000 Hawaiian, Western, and Pacific artifacts and over 12,000 books, manuscripts, diaries, illustrations, and Hawaiian church records. There are three main houses at the museum, they are 1. The oldest frame house, 2. Chamberlain House and 3. the print house. The Oldest frame house was built using materials that arrived from Boston by ship in 1821. The materials were already measured, cut and ready to assemble. The frame house was designed to be suitable for the climate of New England, with small windows to keep the heat in and short eaves in order to help the roof to support a full load of snow. Though it was mainly occupied by the seven members of David Chamberlain's family, it was also used to house up to 5 other missionary families, and sick and ailing sailors or orphans.

The parlor was utilized as a schoolhouse, and the basement doubled as a dining room. The Chamberlain House was constructed from materials produced locally, such as blocks cut from coral and the lumber salvaged from ships. The overall design was from the mission quartermaster Levi Chamberlain, in order to hold supplies as well as people. The structure was 2 stories and had an attic and a basement. This building now serves as the Exhibition hall for the museum.

The print house was an extra structure built and was eventually used in order to print written works. The museum now uses the print house as an exhibit to show how the missionaries and the native Hawaiians worked together to produce the first materials printed in the Hawaiian language. The Mission Houses Museum is opened Tuesday thru Saturday 10:00 a.m. Til 4:00 p.m. General Admission is $10, and there are discounts for students, military and seniors.