Though I’m not giving tours today I’ve come to the museum to view a special exhibit that will open to the public tomorrow. The above bird is part of that exhibit.
This is the oʻo. The few yellow feathers on him are the feathers used to make the capes that the Alii wore. (High chiefs)
The Hawaiians who collected the feathers could not kill the birds by order of the King. The bird became extinct because of all the insects and animals brought to the islands by explorers and industrialist such as the sugar and pineapple growers.
This is a cape worn by the alli, Kalaniopuu. He was a warrior to recon with. He was also the uncle of Kamehameha. It was this cape that he gave to Captain Cook on Cooks third and last fatal vhoyage to Hawaii. The yellow feathers came from such a bird as the oʻo above.
Along with the cape he gave the Captain the above mahiole . (Helmet) this was also made of feathers. The cape and helmet went back to England along with Cook’ body. It made its way to a few different museums where it came to rest in a museum in New Zealand. It is now on a long term lone to the Bishop.