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Suger Industry in Hawaii Essay

  • Submitted by: Nic1718
  • on August 29, 2013
  • Category: History
  • Length: 945 words

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Below is an essay on "Suger Industry in Hawaii" from Anti Essays, your source for research papers, essays, and term paper examples.

Iyondustrial sugar production started slowly in Hawaii. The first sugar mill was created on the island of Lanai in 1802 by an unidentified Chinese man who returned to China in 1803.   The first sugar plantation, known as the Old Sugar Mill of Koloa, was established in 1835 by Ladd & Co. and in 1836 the first 8,000 pounds (3,600 kg) of sugar and molasses was shipped to the United States.

    By the 1840s, sugar plantations gained a foothold in Hawaiian agriculture. Steamships provided rapid and reliable transportation to the islands, and demand increased during the California Gold Rush.   The land division law of 1848 (known as The Great Mahele) displaced Hawaiian people from their land, forming the basis for the sugar plantation economy.   In 1850, the law was amended to allow foreign residents to buy and lease land.   Market demand increased even further during the onset of the American Civil War which prevented Southern sugar from being shipped northward. The price of sugar rose 525% from 4 cents per pound in 1861 to 25 cents in 1864.   The Reciprocity Treaty of 1875 allowed Hawaii to sell sugar to the United States without paying duties or taxes, greatly increasing plantation profits. This treaty also guaranteed that all resources including land, water, human labor power, capital, and technology would be thrown behind sugarcane cultivation. The 1890 McKinley Tariff Act, an effort by the United States government to decrease the competitive pricing of Hawaiian sugar, paid 2 cents per pound to mainland producers. After significant lobbying efforts, this act was repealed in 1894.   By 1890, 75% of all privately held land was owned by foreign businessmen.
    The industry was tightly controlled by former missionary families, concentrated in corporations known in Hawaii as “The Big Five”. These included Castle & Cooke, Alexander & Baldwin, C. Brewer & Co., American Factors (now Amfac) and Theo H. Davies & Co.., which together eventually gained...

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