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Sovereign SugarIndustry and Environment in Hawaii$
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Carol A. MacLennan

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780824839499

Published to Hawaii Scholarship Online: November 2016

DOI: 10.21313/hawaii/9780824839499.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM HAWAII SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.hawaii.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Hawaii University Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in HSO for personal use.date: 03 July 2022

Five Companies

Five Companies

(p.81) Four Five Companies
Sovereign Sugar

Carol A. MacLennan

University of Hawai'i Press

This chapter looks into the history of the Big Five—the organization of missionary family wealth which forms the core of Hawaiʻi's massive environmental change from Hawaiian agriculture to the mono-crop makeover of island landscapes. These five companies controlled land, water, and forest resources, and had a virtual lock on labor relations and public policy. The origins of this centralization of Hawaiʻi's wealth in a complex, tight oligarchy traces back to the 1840s. The chapter considers how the multiethnic nineteenth-century wealth of Hawaiians, Chinese, Germans, British, and Americans had come under the domain of these corporations, further investigating the role they had in managing Hawaiʻi's environment, not to mention its people.

Keywords:   Hawaiʻi wealth, Big Five, missionary family wealth, labor relations, public policy

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