Heiau O Māmalahoa was established by Prince Jonah Kūhiō Kalaniana‘ole on July 3, 1907 in Hilo, Moku O Keawe (Island of Hawai‘i) as the second chapter of the Royal Order of Kamehameha I. Māmalahoa was solemnly dedicated to honor the memory of Kamehameha and uplift Kānaka ‘Ōiwi (the aboriginal peoples of Hawai‘i). Māmalahoa has the distinction of being named after Kamehameha’s personal nā kahu ali‘i (royal guardians) named Māmalahoa (striking war club) c.1782-1812. An elite pū‘ulu koa (unit of warriors), Māmalahoa was recognized for their skill and courage in battle and respected for their honor and loyalty to Kamehameha.
This inoa (name) was chosen by Prince Jonah Kūhiō to reflect Māmalahoa’s bloodlines to the ancient ruling warrior chiefs of Moku O Keawe and to inspire the members of Māmalahoa to imua (move forward) and ho‘omau (persevere) in their cause. Today, Māmalahoa acts to protect, preserve, and perpetuate, the traditional Native Hawaiian culture, customs, and traditions. The core values of Māmalahoa include the recognition of ke Akua, living Aloha, and promoting the ‘Ohana as the fundamental building block to build strong communities and a strong Hawaiian Nation. In addition, Māmalahoa promotes sovereignty of self, i.e., living a life free of addiction, substance abuse, prejudice, ignorance, and fear.
Lastly, Māmalahoa presents the annual Kamehameha Festival in honor of Kamehameha I (KamehamehaFestival.org), encourages and develops kāne leadership in the home and community, protects wahi pana (sacred places), and advocates for the preservation and advancement of Native Hawaiian rights and benefits through legislative advocacy.