Owen Smith (1848-1929)
William O. Smith was borh on August 4, 1848 at Koloa, Hawai'i He
was the son of Dr. James William Smith and Millicent Knapp, members
of the Tenth Company of missionaries sailing from Boston. Dr. Smith
was the only physician on the island of Kaua'i where he spent his
whole life. Mrs. Smith was founder and teacher of the Koloa Boarding
School. William was one of 9 children. As a youth, he worked for
several years on a sugar plantation. He was educated at Reverend
Daniel Dole's school at Koloa, at Punahou School and the Massachusetts
Agricultural College at Amherst.
to Hawai'i, he worked at the law offices of Judge Alfred S. Hartwell
and served as sheriff of Kaua'i in 1870 and sheriff of Maui in 1872.
In 1875, he was admitted to the Hawai'i bar and became deputy attorney
general. In March 23, 1876, he married Mary Abbey Hobron of Honolulu.
He retained his interest in the sugar industry and for many years
was secretary and treasurer of the Hawaiian Sugar Planters' Association.
served in the Hawaiian legislature from 1878-1899. In 1893, he was
a member of the Committee of Safety that seized governing powers
from Queen Lili'uokalani and ended the Hawaiian monarchy. A member
of the executive council of the provisional government, he was appointed
attorney general and president of the board of health by Provisional
President Sanford B. Dole.
his role in the overthrow of the Hawaiian monarchy, he was a trusted
friend of Queen Lili'uokalani and one of the administrators of her
estate upon her death. He was a trustee of the Bernice Pauahi Bishop
Estate from 1884-1886 and 1897-1929. He was a trustee of the Lunalilo
Estate, the Alexander Young Estate and the children's hospital.
He was on the board of the Guardian Trust Company, Bishop Trust
Company, Inter-Island Steam Navigation company and Alexander and
died at his Nu'uanu home on April 13, 1929 after catching a cold
that developed into bronchial pneumonia.
funeral was held at Kawaiaha'o Church. Kamehameha Schools students
were invited to attend. The Reverend Akaiko Akana officiated.
Smith," he said, "was a kind and loving man who held
a great number of responsible positions." Besides this,
the speaker stated that Mr. Smith was given the task of taking
charge of all financial affairs of the Bishop Trust--a task
he performed nobly. The Rev. Akana then urged that Mr. Smith
be known as a doer of things for the benefit of mankind and
that he be remembered as a great example of man. After the speaker's
eulogy, "Only Remembered," was sung by the Kamehameha
Schools. -- C. Kealoha. (The Cadet, April 26, 1929)