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# 15 SS Sterlingshire

The British steamship Sterlingshire came into port yesterday morning, March 2, 1886 and anchored in the stream. The Portuguese immigrants were all safely landed at the Kakaako Immigration Depot before 5 o’clock in the afternoon. Before they left the ship, Honorable A.S. Cleghorn, Inspector General of Immigration went on board and made an inspection. He found the vessel most admirably adapted for immigration purposes, and very clean. The Portuguese on board were a fine-looking body of people.

The Scotch crafters, 8 in number, spoke in high terms of the treatment of the immigrants by the Captain and Officers of the ship. Five of these Scotchmen will go to His Excellency, Mr. Gibson’s stock ranch on Lanai and 3 to the Puuloa sheep and stock ranch in Waimea, Hawaii. Captain Alexander went ashore yesterday. He reports a very pleasant passage. First 4 days out of Liverpool we had light east winds, thence to Madeira. After leaving Madeira, we had calm for 2 days, then fine weather to Cape Horn. We were off to the Cape Horn in 2 weeks, from thence to Honolulu, fine weather and trade winds. The immigrants were brought to the Kakaako Depot and have taken kindly to this new quarters, and was very happy to be on terra-firma once more.

The Sterlingshire will not come into port until this morning about 9 o’clock, and the following Portuguese from Funchal, Madeira...152 men, 100 women, (34 females over 12 years of age, 15 males over 12 years), 128 children between 1 year and 12 years of age, and 12 under 1 year of age, totaling 451. The Sterlingshire left Funchal, Madeira on November 27, 1885 and arrived in Honolulu March 2, 1886, a trip of 95 days from Madeira. During the voyage there were 7 births and 5 deaths, of the births, 5 were females and 2 were males. One female age 46 years, died of synscope, another died from bronchitis, and the others were ill from birth.

The Sterlingshire arrived in splendid condition and very clean, reported the immigration official, and they were a very polite, happy lot of people. It was very pleasant to converse with them.


The British ship Sterlingshire, commanded by Captain Alexander, arrived off port about dark last evening from Liverpool by way of Madeira. She was not expected to arrive until about the latter end of the month, but has made an unusually fast trip, being only 93 days from Madeira. This is a little longer than it has taken some steamers to come from that place. Pilot Babcock boarded her and anchored her outside, and remained on board all night. The boat’s crew which took the pilot out returned and reported all well on board. The Port Physician will board the ship early this morning.

The Sterlingshire is consigned to Messrs George W. MacFarlance & Co. and brought about 450 Portuguese men, women and children, also several Scotch crafters for His Excellency, Mr. Gibson. She has 1,000 tons of freight, 300 of which is for Portland, Oregon. Hugh Kawelo, one of the Hawaiian youths who was sent to the ironworks of Messrs Lees, Watson and Co., Glasgow, Scotland and for 3 years was in poor health and was expected to be on board the vessel.

The Portuguese at the Kakaako Depot have taken kindly to their new quarters, and appear glad to be on terra-firma once more, and they are a fine looking lot of people. Yesterday afternoon, Mr. W.O. Atwater, secretary to the Board of Immigration shipped the following to Kauai, Mr. A.S. Wilcox, Kekaha Mill Company, 7 men, 5 women and 11 children.

The following Portuguese immigrants were shipped from the Immigration Depot, Kakaako, on March 8, 1886.

Paia Plantation - 30 men, 21 women, 43 children
Reciprocity Sugar Co. - 11 men, 8 women, 14 children
Koloa Sugar Co. - 11 men 7 women, 67 children
Laupahoehoe Sugar Co. - 36 men, 24 women, 67 children
Fryer & Meier, Kekaha, Kauai - 16 men, 11 women, 13 children
East Maui Stock Co. - 4 men
Kohala Sugar Co. Hawaii - 1 man
P.A. Dias, Kohala, Hawaii - 1 man, 1 woman

They were all shipped in good order, thanks to the energy of the Secretary of the Immigration Board, Mr. W.D. Atwater. On March 8, 1886, the steamer Iwalani took 77 Portuguese immigrants to Kauai.

Excerpts from the Pacific Commercial Advertiser - 1886. Hawaii State Library - microfilm; Hawaii State Archives

Thank you to Sandy Sakai for this contribution.
© 2003 Melody Lassalle

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