Archive / Archivo: Heliópolis



ABC (Madrid, Spain), 28 February 1907 (translation)

A great number of emigrants, all from this province (Málaga) await the arrival of the steamship that is to take them to the Hawaiian Islands.  For this reason the docks present a most depressing spectacle.  People are speaking mournfully about the constant bustle of emigration that can be observed in these ports.


TO BEAT JAPAN IN COLONIZATION SCHEME:  Andalusian Emigrants Being Sent to Hawaiian Islands

 Geneva Daily Times and Courier, March 8, 1907

Madrid, Spain, March 8. –In the sailing today of the steamer Heliopolis from Malaga with 2,000 Andalusian emigrants bound for Hawaii is revealed, according to a general belief here, a plan of the United States to checkmate Japan in her apparent scheme of colonizing the Hawaiian islands with Japanese.

The 2,000 Andalusians shipped today for the islands are only the advance guard of migrants who will be sent to the islands.  Other shippings have already been arranged for.

Washington authorities are encouraging this emigration with the hope of filling the islands with white settlers.



ABC (Madrid, Spain), 8 March 1907 (translated)

The Heliopolis, a magnificent 10,000 ton steamship has entered the port of Malaga.  Preparations are being made to embark 700 families that will emigrate to the Hawaiian Islands.  The docks are thronged with people, as there are 2,000 Andalusians making the voyage.  The docks are the site of many emotional scenes, between those who are embarking and those friends and family members who are staying behind.  The ship has excellent accommodations, and has purchased enormous quantities of provisions, including 6,000 arrobas of wine.  The cost of the expedition is 200,000 duros.



The following telegrams will undoubtedly form a deep impression on the souls of our readers.

 El Imparcial (Madrid) 8 March 1907 (translation)

 Malaga 7 (3,30 tarde)

The beautiful 10-ton transatlantic steamship Heliopolis has just arrived to this port from England.  It has been commissioned by the government of the Islands of Hawaii at a cost of $200,000, to transport to that archipelago one thousand emigrants from the provinces of Malaga, Granada, Jaén and Almería.

The government that has hired them offers free pasage, a house valued at 500 dolars, an acre of land, firewood, medical attention and medicines.  In addition, during the first year they will receive a monthly salary of 20 gold pesos (men) and 15 gold pesos (women, and youth older than 15).  These salaries will be doubled in the second year and tripled in the third year, at which point they will become the owners of their house and land, provided that they have shown good conduct and are willing to change nationality.  The expedition is being undertaken under the direct supervision of the delegate of the Hawaiian government, Mr. Frezer.

The emigrants who have signed up are approximately 700 families, whose members have had to get vaccinated; those sick have been declared ineligible.

[…]  This emigration of seven hundred families is the straw that breaks the camel’s back.  The US, which exercises a kind of stewardship over those islands, wants to combat the increase of Chinese and Japanese settlers, opposing to the yellow population a white population.  And among the men of Caucasian race, the Spaniards are chosen, and of the Spaniards, the Andalusians in particular; those people who, here in Spain, are thought of as being dreamers, more inclined to muslim stillness than to the rigors of hard work.  And they are being sought not only as settlers, but also as citizens, obliged, after three years, to naturalize.

This should not infuriate us.  After all, these seven hundred families, chased away by the hunger they suffer here, flee from our territory, and they are severed forever from our nation, as if they had been amputated in one swift stroke, as soon as the Heliopolis departed the port of Malaga. […]

[…] Meanwhile, the peasants and workers flee from Spain, and make lives for themselves in all different nations, they arrive to the most remote countries, and in every latitude and amidst all kinds of temperatures they tenaciously produce wealth.  Yesterday, we dilapidated  an entire colonial empire; today we dilapidate the rare blood that still flows through the veins of the race.



Correspondencia de España, 9 March 1907 (translation)

Malaga 8.  Today the embarkation will be completed of the emigrants who are traveling to the Hawaiian Islands aboard the steamship Heliopolis  The Heliopolis will lift anchor and depart this afternoon for those islands.  According the the ship’s manifest, there are 850 families aboard the steamship, for a total of 3,823 emigrants.  They are from the various provinces of Andalucía.

Public opinion is opposed to this emigration, which is considered reckless and which is likely to be disastrous.  It can be assured that few of those who are going will be able to return.  Everyone agrees that it is absurd to emigrate to islands where everything is foreign to the emigrants: habits, customs and even language.  There are doubts as to whether the emigrants will be able to bear a climate so different from our own.  The emigrants will also have to compete with the Japanese, who have established a well organized emigration program.  All of the professions and industries are controlled by the Japanese, who also feel a great affinity with the native peoples of those islands.  This competition with the yellow people can only turn out disastrously for our compatriots.  We censure the Government for consenting to this emigration.  The socialists have just published a manifesto, in which they forcefully denounce this exodus of proletarian workers.

The embarkation was witnessed by a large crowd, who showed great signs of compassion.

Malaga 8.  The steamship Heliopolis will remain in the port, and there is much commotion among the inhabitants of the town.  It is believed that the emigrants have been deceived.  They are traveling in the worst conditions, packed as if they were beasts.  They were not given any food until 1:00, when such a miserable ration was distributed, that many threw the food over board.  Many families have come off the ship, and decided not to emigrate.  The political press has published several articles, denouncing this evil trafficking in human flesh.  The ship does not have the conditions to accomodate such a large number of emigrants.  A committee of emigrants has called on the governor to complain about the poor conditions aboard the steamship Heliopolis.

The departure of the ship has been suspended until further notice.

The conflict gets worse –A Depressing scene– Looking for a solution

Malaga 8  The steamship Heliopolis has postponed its departure until tomorrow, because more than seven hundred [?] emigrants decided to disembark and not emigrate, as they could not tolerate the deplorable and unhygienic conditions of the cabins they had been assigned aboard ship.

The spectacle on the docks is heartbreaking.  Hundreds of families who no longer have a home on Spanish land, are sleeping in open spaces.  Many emigrants, without any resources, are begging for food.  The governor has met with the British and American Consuls, and with the administrators of the ship.  The Civil Guard has been deployed on the docks to keep order.



 Heraldo de Madrid, 9 March 1907 (translation)

 Málaga 8 March, (10:00 pm)

Since noon rumors have been circulating about a mutiny among the emigrants on the Heliopolis because of the poor treatment they have received and the despicable conditions of the food on board.

It was also being said that four passengers had died of asphyxiation.

I immediately tried to confirm these rumors, and I headed to the ship, though I was unable to board since the gangway had been removed.

There were crowds gathered on the docks, anxious to get news.

Among the groups were many emigrants who had disembarked, and who were affirming that the night before they had been given coffee brewed with salt water.  The food today had been inedible.  A delegation of the disembarked emigrants went to lodge a protest with the governor about the deceit of which they had been victims.

It seems that the conflict stems mainly from the inexperience of the cooks that had been hired, because, according to the American consul and the Port authorities, the ship fulfills all the required conditions, and has ample supplies for the entire journey.

The departure of the ship has been blocked until the conflict is resolved.

Malaga 8 March (10:50 pm)

It is estimated that some 200 emigrants have come off the ship, many of them having decided to return to their villages.  Some ladies of charity have come to the docks to aid the emigrants, and to great acclaim.  No death aboard ship has been confirmed.  The American consul, who has just come off the ship, says that the problem was solved by hiring 11 of the emigrant women who agreed to work as cooks.  It is believed that the ship will hoist anchor tomorrow.  The emigrants who disembarked will demand to be compensated by the company for damages and losses.

The government is being harshly criticized for allowing emigration under these kinds of conditions, which is severely detrimental to agriculture in Spain.

Malaga, 9 March [1:20 pm]

The Heliopolis is still detained in port, until it is able to organize the ship’s services.

It will likely set sail this afternoon.  Reports in the press have brought crowds of curious people to the docks.  The Civil Guard is patrolling the port.  Some of the emigrants who yesterday disembarked are now asking to return aboard; others are begging in the streets.  The event is being talked about a great deal.

Malaga, 9 March (4:00 pm)

It seems that the conflict aboard the Heliopolis has been definitively resolved and the ship will set sail tonight.

Foreign cooks have been replaced by Spanish cooks, and this morning the passengers were satisfied with the food.  Four bakers have also been hired, for $1,000 pesetas each, plus the cost of repatriation.

The last pieces of luggage are being boarded, and a careful review of the ship is being undertaken; many individuals are being removed from the ship; taking advantage of all the confusion yesterday, they had boarded without the proper documentation.  In addition, many of the emigrants who had left the ship yesterday have re-boarded, and it is now believed that no more than two hundred of the emigrants who had signed up for this trip have changed their minds and will return to their villages.

These people, in the meantime, are begging on the streets. […]


ASSISTED IMMIGRATION:  Recent Decision Held Not to Apply to Hawaii

New York Tribune, March 9, 1907

Honolulu, March 8– The Territorial Board of Immigration has cabled to Commissioner Sargent asking if the Spanish immigrants now bound for Hawaii on the steamer Heliopolis will be excepted from Attorney General Bonaparte’s ruling against state aided immigration.

Washington, March 8– It was authoritatively stated to-day that the recent opinion of the Attorney General, in which he held that it is unlawful under the recently enacted immigration law for a state to pay the passage of intending immigrants or to assist immigration except by advertisement, will not apply to Hawaii.  In that country the decision has already caused considerable agitation, as under the auspices of the Territorial Immigration Society immigrants are being brought to the islands from Europe and the Azores to take the place of Japanese laborers on the sugar plantations.  This has been sanctioned by the United States government, and a shipload of immigrants recently brought from the Azores Islands have proved satisfactory…


RIOT ABOARD SHIP BOUND FOR HAWAII:  Fifty Spanish Families Kick Up Fuss Over Food and Accomodations –American Consul Acts

Utica Herald Dispatch, March 9, 1907

Madrid, Spain March 9 –A riot among the emigrants bound for Hawaii on board the steamer Heliopolis today postponed the sailing of the vessel from Malaga until Monday.  Her sailing permit was rescinded by the harbor authorities just as the steamer was leaving.  Meager accomodations and poor food were the causes of the trouble.  There were 50 [¿] families, numbering 3,300 on the vessel.  When they discovered the poor accomodations there was a violent outbreak.  Several persons were badly hurt during the melee and members of the crew were severely handled.  Then port officials interfered.  As a result of the intervention of the American Consul it was arranged that 200 of the immigrants would return home.  Ten Spanish cooks were then engaged by the Consul to make the voyage, and the rioters quieted down. The captain promised better maintenance for the emigrants and it is expected that the steamer will be allowed to sail on Monday.



ABC, (Madrid, Spain)  9 March 1907 (translated)

Málaga. –A cargo of human flesh.  The steamship Heliopolis remains in port because of its inadequate conditions, it has been said.  A great commotion has arisen among the emigrants, who feel that they have been deceived, since they were being packed into the ship like beasts.  They were not given anything to eat until one o’clock, when they were served a miserable ration, that many threw overboard.  There is much indignation and forceful protests.  Many families have disembarked and decided not to emigrate.



El Día (Madrid) 9 March 1907 (translated)

The steamship Heliopolis was supposed to depart today at noon, with the expedition of emigrants bound for the Hawaiian Islands, but a grave incident postponed the departure.

Even though there were large supplies of food aboard the ship, the crew refused to feed the emigrants.  The passengers made quite a fuss and the American and British Consuls, as well as other authorities, had to intervene.  The docks are full of peasants who want to emigrate.  They have been promised space on another expedition scheduled to leave next month.  The press unanimously protests the way in which the government allows these exploitative initiatives to be undertaken.

It is said that the Heliopolis does not have proper accommodations for so many passengers, and that wooden shacks have been placed on deck as additional lodging quarters.  In town, the public spills out on to the streets and goes down to the port to witness the departure of the steamship.

The miserable aspect of the departing emigrants is heartbreaking.

–More than 200 emigrants have disembarked from the Heliopolis, and decided not to emigrate, because since the previous afternoon, they had only been served coffee brewed with salt water.  Very serious accounts are circulating, and people are becoming outraged.  It has been said that four people have died of asphyxiation aboard the Heliopolis.

A delegation of passengers has called on the governor to denounce the cruel conditions of the expedition.  The governor has met with the Marine Commander who has blocked the boat’s departure until the problems are resolved, especially food and lodging.  The Yankee Consul has hired eleven women to prepare the food during the journey, since it was discovered that most of the staff hired by the ship do not have kitchen experience.

Some of the ladies of the colony of foreigners who spend their winters in Malaga have gone to the docks to aid the emigrants.


SPAIN STOPS EMIGRANTS.  Complaints of Bad Food on Ship Taking 700 Families to Hawaii

New York Sun, March 10, 1907

Madrid, March 9 –The governor and Harbor Master of Malaga prohibited today the sailing of the steamship Heliopolis for Hawaii on account of the complaints of bad food and poor accomodations on board the ship.



La Vanguardia (Barcelona, Spain), 10 March 1907 (translation)

The Minister of Government met with journalists this morning, and broached the subject of the emigrants from Málaga who were traveling to Hawaii.  Mr. La Cierva affirmed that, as soon as he heard of the abuses aboard the Heliopolis, he telegraphed the civil governor of Málaga, ordering a complete report.  This is the answer he received from the governor:

“Málaga, 9 March, 10:00 am –The hygienic conditions aboard the Heliopolis are much better than those of all ships outfitted for emigration, and there are bunks for all the emigrants.  It carries abundant provisions, condensed milk and baby bottles.  What occurred yesterday was the result of poorly organized services and because the food was not properly seasoned, which caused 300 emigrants to disembark and to spread exaggerated rumors.  I went to the docks and met with the British and American consuls; while it is true that the ship is flying under the British flag, its owners are American.  The emigrants calmed down after they saw that they would be given abundant cold meats.  Today, Spanish bakers and cooks have boarded the ship.”


Our Images: Emigration From the Port of Malaga (translation)

ABC, (Madrid) March 11, 1907

Yesterday, finally, after numerous incidents that almost prevented its sailing, the steamship Heliopolis left the port of Malaga, with 3,200 emigrants aboard, bound for the Hawaiian Islands.

The events that occurred these past few days as a result of the difficulties of providing adequate accommodations for such numerous families have put the subject of emigration in the spotlight all over Spain.


The Heliopolis Has Departed

La Vanguardia (Barcelona, Spain) 11 March 1907 (translated)

Málaga– The group of emigrants that were supposed to depart aboard the steamship Heliopolis but chose not to travel, have approached the city government to request assistance in returning to their villages.

The students of the General and Technical High School plan to organize a show to raise funds aimed at helping those emigrants who remained ashore.

The crew of the ship Heliopolis, mostly Chinese and Japanese, had tried to jump ship, but the captain prevented them from doing so.

A young girl died aboard ship, the daughter of two emigrants.

Workers’ organizations have called a meeting to protest the government’s acceptance of emigration.

The emigrants who left for Hawaii complain that aboard ship the dining tables have been placed in the middle of the sleeping quarters, surrounded by bunks.

An eleven-year-old girl was taken off the Heliopolis; she was trying to emigrate by herself to the Hawaiian Islands.  She was turned over to her mother, who had been desperately looking for her on the docks.

One woman with a bad leg and another blind woman were removed from the ship.

Another woman, with a small girl in her arms, cried as she walked up and down the docks, asking for someone to adopt her daughter and thus prevent her from dying.

It is believed that the girl will be taken to the foundling hospital.

The Heliopolis has departed.


Emigrants to the Hawaiian Islands

ABC (Madrid, Spain) 11 March 1907

The steamship Heliopolis departed today without incident, with 3,252 immigrants aboard.  Roughly 500 would-be emigrants stayed behind, after changing their minds about crossing the seas.



El Pais (Madrid), 12 March 1907 (translated)

Malaga 11.    The steamship Heliopolis departed today, on its way to the Hawaiian Islands, with 3,200 emigrants –men and women—on board.

The spectacle has been extraordinarily moving. The emigrants were crying inconsolably, as they bade farewell to the land of their birth. The people who witnessed the sad spectacle from the docks waved handkerchiefs to say goodbye to those poor passengers who were abandoning the land that saw their birth but which denies them the bread of life.

Some 628 emigrants stayed ashore, having changed their minds about emigrating.  Many of them are returning to their villages, on foot.  It is said that in April another expedition will set out for the same destination, this time with 4,000 emigrants.

To raise funds that will be used to help those who have stayed behind, the students of the General Technical High School is organizing a show.  This is a most laudable initiative.  While these things are happening, the government takes care of its pork, without worrying one bit about the horrific predicament of Andalucia.


A Bankrupt State

El País (Madrid), 12 March 1907 (translated)

Regardless of how we define the State, everyone agrees that it has three primordial functions: the life and securty of its citizens, the proper administration of justice, and repect for the rule of law.  From the economists who think that these are the state’s only three proper functions, to State socialists who assign to the state many other responsibilities, everyone agrees that these three are fundamental and constitutive of the state.  A state that fails to guarantee the rule of law, justic and life, has failed, it is not even a State.  This is the case of the Spanish State.

These past few days, a number of facts, and reality itself –that great teacher—have shown us that the State does not guarantee life, justice or the rule of law; instead, the State obstructs, compromises, disdains and violates those things.

In almost all of rural Spain, with the exception of four or five eastern provinces and the Basque country, hunger is endemic.  In Andalucía it is a particularly serious and acute problem […]  High mortality rates, the decadence of the race, and mass emigrations are the immediate consequences of the endemic and traditional hunger in Andalucía.  And what does the State do to guarantee the right to life of these thousands of Spaniards?  Nothing! […]

The State is powerless to stem the flow of emigration, and it does not even know how to channel and organize it to protect the emigrants.  In Malaga we have just witnessed the scandal of a slave ship putting in at that port to pick up a load of Spanish peasants and take them to the Hawaiian Islands in the Pacific Ocean.  The Heliopolis is lacking all manner of conditions for such a journey.  Everyone who saw the ship, with the exception of the Governor, says that it was a pig sty; the food was awful; the passengers were crowded into what looked like wooden cages; the Chinese crew members were filthy and stank to high heavens; witnesses even saw mounds of sawdust on the ship’s deck where the passengers had to empty their bowels… A real horror.  These are the conditions endured by the unfortunate Spaniards who are expelled from their country because of the lack of work and productivity.  The government abandons them.  It doesn’t protect them from immoral enterprises or companies who, in addition to transporting them in these apalling  conditions, often do not even fulfill the promises they made to lure the emigrants in the first place..



La Vanguardia (Barcelona, Spain) 13 March 1907 (translated)

Information from Málaga; the 600 emigrants who decided at the last minute not to emigrate to the Hawaiaan Islands on the steamship Heliopolis did not have time to reclaim their luggage and the ship left port with the luggage on board.  Thus the situation of these poor folks has become considerably worse.



Correspondencia de España, 16 March 1907 (translated)

The Reuter Agency, which only sends news about Spain to London when the topic will discredit our nation before the eyes of the whole world –strikes, famine, plagues, epidemics, emigration, government crises, episodes of fanaticism or sectarism, etc etc.– today has a story about those thousands of Andalusian workers who were set to emigrate to the Hawaiian Islands aboard the steamship Heliopolis.  In Málaga they refused to allow the ship to leave because they were already starving to death in port, as they were only given bread and coffee, and the coffee had been brewed with salt water.

This is just a single news item, but truthfully, it is hard to say which part of it will be more irritating or infuriating to any patriotic Spaniard: the self-satisfaction with which the Reuter Agency reports on these things; the mistreatment to which these unfortunate compatriots of ours were subjected aboard the Yankee steamship Heliopolis; or the very fact that 3,000 Spaniards, of the white race, like us, who speak the same language as us, who like us are heirs to traditions of pride and chivalrous spirit, that these compatriots of ours are obliged to emigrate to the Hawaiian islands where they will have to compete for their bread with Japanese coolies who over the last 3,000 years have become habituated to a regime of despotism, submission and passivity…


From Spain:  Emigration to the Hawaiian Islands

Caras y caretas (Buenos Aires, Argentina) 13 April 1907

With the goal of colonizing the Hawaiian archipelago and replacing the Japanese with Europeans, the United States recently hired 850 Andalusian families, or a total of 3,823 individuals.  The steamship Heliopolis recently arrived to Malaga to transport them to Hawaii.

On March 8 the embarkation process was completed, but that same day many of those who had embarked began returning to land, complaining of the bad food and hygiene aboard ship.  The governor got involved; accompanied by the US Consul, and the Director of Maritime Health, he visited the ship.  The result of the inspection was that the complaints were enormously exaggerated, since the hygienic conditions of the Heliopolis were much better than those of most ships outfitted for emigrants, and the ship had abundant and good-quality supplies.

As a result, however, some 600 of the contracted emigrants changed their minds, and stayed ashore.  The Heliopolis departed from the port with some 3,200 emigrants aboard.



La Vanguardia (Barcelona, Spain) 16 April 1907 (translated)

Because of its great interest, we translate the following telegram which was published in the newspaper Il Sécolo in Genoa, on 13 April. “News from Punta Arena:  some extremely sad events have taken place aboard the Heliopolis, which is loaded with Spanish emigrants en route to Hawaii.  The poor immigrants have had to endure all kinds of misery, including eating spoiled food and drinking impure water.  When news of this situation spread, there was much indignation.”


SPANIARDS FOR HAWAII.  Arrival of 2,200 Assisted Immigrants, Who Had 14 Children Born on Way– 19 Children Died.

Boston Daily Globe, April 28, 1907

Honolulu, April 27– The steamship Heliopolis has arrived from Malaga with 2,200 Spanish immigrants.  In the voyage there were 14 births and 19 deaths, the latter all children, who died of measles.


SPANISH LABOR IS SATISFACTORY Immigrants stay on Hawaiian Plantations and Make Good

San Francisco Chronicle, September 20, 1907.

Honolulu.  September 9. –The Spanish immigrants brought here by the Heliopolis some months ago are giving satisfaction in all parts of the islands where they have gone.  For the most part, too, they have remained on the plantations where they went to work first.  Very few have abandoned the plantations, either to engage in other work or to leave the islands.  There have been some who have, for there were undoubtedly some who came who never intended to work on the plantations, but took the opportunity offered by the Heliopolis to leave their country in the belief that they could thus get to America cheaper than by any other way.

A few have left the plantations to seek employment elsewhere, alleging that the wages paid by the plantations were not enough to support their families.  Concerning these the Beacon, a weekly paper published ostensibly as the organ of the Democratic party in the Territory, but really controlled and directed by a leading member of the Democratic organization who is deeply interested in plantations, says:

“We note with interest that three Spaniards have appeared in town, having given up employment on the plantations for the reason that the plantation wages, consisting of $20 a month will not support either a Spaniard or a Portuguese who has a family of any size.  On the other hand, the plantations cannot well afford to pay much more in cash, but what most plantations can afford, if they will only see it that way, is a plot of ground on which those Spaniards, without interfering with their work on the plantations, can raise what would probably cost them $10 to $15 a month to buy.”


MAY HAVE BROKEN IMMIGRATION LAW. Action of Hawaii in Importing Portuguese is Now in Question.  LABOR MEN INVESTIGATING.  Penalty for Offense Would Be Four and One-Half Millions.

San Francisco Chronicle, Nov 24, 1907

Honolulu, November 14.– The American Federation of Labor has been in correspondence with representatives here in regard to the Portuguese and Spanish immigrants which were brought to Hawaii during the past year.  The correspondence has been along the line of determining whether the introduction of these immigrants was not a violation of the immigration law, and if so, if it did not make the territory or those acting for it liable to the fine of $1,000 for each of the immigrants thus brought in.

All these immigrants were brought into the territory only after the most thorough discussion of the law with President Roosevelt and with Commisioner-General of Immigration Sargent, and under a ruling of the Secretary of the Department of Commerce and Labor.  In fact, Commission-General of Immigration Sargent came here to look the matter over before any of the immigrants were brought, and he came out here to be present when the first shipload of them landed.

But Attorney-General Bonaparte’s opinion on the law since given makes it less certain than it was that the bringing of these immigrants here was technically within the law.  The possibility was recognized by President E.F. Bishop of the Planters’ Association in his annual address in that body in which he said: “It is to be hoped that the immigration laws will be so amended at the coming session of Congress that the coming of this class of people (Spaniards and Portuguese) to Hawaii, may be resumed, stopped as it has been because of a possible irregularity in the methods followed by the Territorial Board of Immigration having charge of this work.

If the introduction of these immigrants was in violation of the immigration law, there is a penalty of $1,000 for each individual so introduced.  As there were 4,762 introduced in this way, the fines would amount to $4,762,000.  As half of this under the law goes to the informer, it is easy to see that there is a temptation to undertake prosecutions to recover this penalty.  The American Federation of Labor seems to be interested in it because of its general opposition to assisted immigration, while the penaly and the disposition of the penalty supplies a means by which expensive prosecutions might be carried on.



Washington Post,  December 14, 1907

The annual report of the governor of Hawaii gives an interesting resume of the labor conditions on the islands and the efforts recently made to induce desirable immigration.  The frank admission is made that the sugar interests, which predominate in Hawaii, have pursued a selfish and futile policy toward labor, and it is pointed out that the new policy is supported mainly by contributions from the sugar interests, showing that it is realized at last that the semi-peonage system is a costly failure.

Under the new arrangement efforts have been made to induce laborers to go to Hawaii from Spain and the Azores and Madeira, experience having demonstrated that Portuguese and Spanish laborers in similar climates have proved their worth.  The collector of customs at Honolulu was granted a leave of absence of six months, and he proceeded to the Azores and elsewhere as the representative of the Hawaiian board of immigration.  He had little difficulty in raising a company of 1,325 persons, who sailed from Funchal in October 1906, and arrived at Honolulu in due time.  There they found many of their countrymen, and offers of work were forthcoming as soon as they left quarantine.  The governor’s report emphasizes the statement that no restraint or compulsion of any nature was exercised or attempted with the immigrants, who were free to stay or return, as they pleased.  Last spring 2,201 immigrants from Malaga, Spain, arrived at Honolulu, and still later 1,106 Portuguese immigrants arrived.

The sugar plantations offered inducements to prospective immigrants, acting on the conclusion that a new system of labor employment was necessary.  Most of the plantations offered to give an acre of land, either outright or on a long lease, to the head of each family and to build him a house costing $400.  A form of homestead and farming agreement was drawn up, which embodied the inducements offered and the conditions which immigrants were expected to observe in performing their share of the agreement.

The objection has been made that this is practically an evasion of the contract labor law, but the plan has stood the test of rigid scrutiny by the government, and it seems to work well in practice, without depriving immigrants of any rights.  it is an improvement, at any rate, over the old rapacious methods which made laborers the serfs of the sugar planters.  The importation of European laborers means, also, a reduction of the relative proportion of Asiatics in Hawaii, which is much to be desired, since Europeans are assimilable and Asiatics are not.  Within a few years the Portuguese and the Spaniards who are working out their salvation in Hawaii will be good American citizens.  The Japanese and the Chinese will never become Americans.


JAPANESE IN HAWAII. Delegate Kalanianaole Says Planters Are Not Ousting Them

New York Times, January 6, 1908

Washington.  Jan. 5.–Prince Kuhio Kalanianaole, Delgate in Congress from Hawaii, expresses astonishment at the reports at Vancouver that Hawaiian planters are trying to rid themselves of Japanese laborers.  While he has heard nothing of the situation there, and nothing has come to any branch of the Government here, he says he is inclined to believe the report has no substantial foundation.

“The planters in Hawaii want all the laborers they can get –Japanese or any other sort,” he said this evening.  “There are now about 60,000 Japanese on the island and there is work for more –for Spanish-Americans, Spaniards, or Japanese.  To displace the Japanese would be a difficult task, and I do not believe that at this time the planters have any intention of trying to get rid of them.


SPANISH LEAVING THE PLANTATIONS.  Two Hundred Families Cease Work at Hawaii and Come Here. Complain of Hardships.  Forty Have Become Objects of Charity and May Be Deported

San Francisco Chronicle, July 2, 1909, p. 12

Forty destitute Spanish families now being cared for by the Associated Charities in this city have been given the choice of being deported to Spain or of returning to work on the sugar plantations of the Hawaiian Islands.  This was the ultimatum conveyed to them by United States Immigration Commisioner Hart H. North yesterday.  The returned Spaniards say that they were worked fourteen hours a day on the plantations and that they were obliged to purchase the necessaries of life from the company stores at an exorbitant price.

M.A. de Silva, an agent of the planters, is in this city, herding the fugitives back to the islands.

There were 700 families in all who arrived at Honolulu from Spain on April 26, 1907 on the steamers Luveric,  Helipopolis and Rumeric.  They were brought to the islands by the Territorial Immigration Bureau, a commercial organization, composed of sugar planters who desired cheap labor and who had sent agents to Spain and the Azores to drum up immigrants.  There were no written contracts, but it was understood before starting, so the Spaniards say, that they were to receive for ten hours worked a day $20 a month during the first year, $21 during the scond year, and $22 during the third year.  At the end of the third year they were to be given free of cost the house and the little patch of land on which they lived.


Seven hundred families, amounting to about 3,000 men, women and children, composed the first batch of imigrants to the islands.  During the past six months 200 of these families have left the islands and come to California.  They came without proper clothing for the cooler climate of San Francisco, and most of them without bedclothing.

They soon became a burden upon the Associated Charities, that organization having expended more than $700 upon them during the month of May.  At the beginning of the fruit gathering season all but forty families found employment in the interior and on the coast of this state.  The forty still remain as an incubus and it is upon these that Agent de Silva is using his persuasive powers, assisted by the United States Government, to induce them to return to the islands.  Mr. de Silva arived from New York a day or two ago and reported the facts to Commisioner North, who has been advised by the immigration Bureau at Washington to assist in herding the Spaniards back to the islands.


The immigrants told Secretary Harry R. Bogart of the Associated Charities that they were obliged to go to work at 4 in the morning and kept at work until half-past 6 in the evening, and that they were taken great distances in flat cars to the plantations without any guard rail on the cars.

Mr. deSilva denied yesterday that the men were required to work more than ten hours per day and said that their living expenses were not high, inasmuch as house rent was free and each house had half an acre or so of land on which they could raise much food did they so desire.  He said that the Spaniards became discontented because friends and countrymen wrote them from California that they could do much better in the state.  When they arrived here they found that they could not get employment at all.  Mr. de Silva pointed out the fact that two hundred families had managed to save sufficient in two years to pay their fares at the rate of $30 per head to this city and that since their arrival the depositors in the savings bank at Honoloulu increasted 300.

He is offering the forty families free transportation to Honolulu on the steamship Alameda, which will sail on July 17th.  If they decline the offer they will be deported to Spain.


Fined for Abusing Immigrants at Sea  British Steamship Must Pay $7,960 for Neglect –Condemned by Commerce Department.

New York Herald, December 8, 1911

It was announced by the Department of Commerce and Labor that penalties aggregating $7,960 were imposed today by Mr. Cable, acting Secretary of the department, upon the British steamship Oteric for what was described as the “worst case of neglect of steerage passengers ever brought before the department under the passenger act of 1882.”  A department statement says:

“Among her 1,242 passengers there were in the eight weeks of her voyage 58 deaths, 57 being children.  The sexes were not properly segregated:  the ventilation of the ship was inadequate and greatly increased the mortality rate; the hospital facilities were ill ventilated and without proper equipment and the sanitary conditions of the vessel were almost beyond belief.

“The case has been pending before the department since the arrival of the Oteric at Honolulu April 13.  The vessel was employed to carry Portuguese and Spanish immigrants through Magellan Straits to Honolulu.

“The master of the vessel, James Findley, attempted to explain the existing conditions by stating that about ten days after leaving Gibraltar there was a battle between the Portuguese and Spanish male passengers.  To prevent further trouble the Portuguese passengers were placed aft, while the Spanish passengers were put forward.  This resulted in the commingling of the sexes.”



ABC (Madrid, Spain) 27 December 1912 (translated)

The High Council on Emigration has learned that in different points of Spain there has been a propaganda campaign aimed at recruiting workers to emigrate to the Hawaiian Islands.

Said Council, having studied all of the credible reports and information about the situation of workers on those islands, urges all those who are being recruited to keep these things in mind:

-the voyage is made in ships that are not authorized by the Spnaish government, and, therefore, any claims made before that government will go unheeded

-once in Hawai, the workers are taken to the places that best suit the plantation owners

-the workday is 12 hours, with only a half hour break for lunch

-if you become ill, you are forced to go to the hospitals, which are far away from the plantations where you live; not knowing English also turns out to be the source of tremendous hardships

-the daily wage for a strong worker who can bear the twelve hour days twenty-six days each month, is 23 pesos per month; an insufficient wage for survival, because of the exorbitant prices of basic necessities, which are sold in stores run by the plantation owners.

-on the plantations many of the workers are Chinese, Japanese and Malaysian, and occasionally a European worker is treated in the same way that those other groups are treated.



El Motín (Madrid), 16 April 1914 (translated)

You live poorly here on your land, don’t you, John Spaniard?  Your fields don’t yield enough to live on.  Your business is not going so well.  Your peasant arms can’t find a job that pays.  Your shop is failing because of a lack of clients.  Your employment, with its miserable pay, keeps you busy during the best hours of the day, so you can’t find any time to moonlight.  You’ve thought of leaving.  But to where? […]

Will you go the Hawaiian Islands?  Remember the tragedy of the Willesden, the children dying in the bowels of a slave ship, their bodies thrown into the Atlantic and into the Pacific, the desperation of the peasant mothers, watching an oceanic grave swallow up their little babies born in happy Andalucía.  Don’t forget that in the archipelago where Cook died, the Yankee and Japanese planters look at Spanish peons like abject beings, worthy only of the whip and crude insults.  Seeing them arrive from a land as remote as Spain, defeated, indigent, miserable, they equate them with Chinese coolies.  And they treat them the same way […]


Hawaiian Islands:  Immigration 

La emigración española, Madrid August 15, 1916, p. 131 (translation)

This is not a new problem for Hawaii; a lack of workers on their plantations.  I don’t think that the Board of Immigration will, for the third time, look toward Spain, because experience has taught them that bringing Spanish immigrants was a mistake.  But just in case their network of agents and recruiters might once again visit Spain, we should remain vigilant.

Sugar and pineapple cultivation are the only profitable enterprises in Hawaii, and the plantations own all the land that is adequate for these crops.  So if a worker, through labor and thrift, manages to save a few hundred dollars (there are maybe a dozen of these lucky ones in our colony), he won’t know where to put his money and will go to California, whose very name is an attraction for all Spanish emigrants.  This assertion is confirmed by the fact that each year some 450 Spaniards depart from this port en route to California, and of the 8,000 Spaniards that were originally brought here according to the statistics, there are only 3,000 that are still here.

There is another reason why our countrymen should not trust the inducements that are promised in order to attract them to this Pacific Paradise, which is what they call this archipelago: the daily wage of 18 reales, medical attention, house and firewood, in exchange for 10 hours-a-day of difficult work, is not at all in proportion with the cost of food.  In Honolulu the minimum wage is $1.75, equivalent to 85 of our reales, for eight hours work.  But these jobs, in general, are reserved for native Hawaiians or American subjects, and supply is always  greater than demand for these kinds of workers.

Finally, in Hawaii there are 91,409 Japanese, 21,770 Chinese, and 15,290 Filipinos; if to these numbers we add the Island natives, we whites are a minority.  The white race can not compete with the black race or the yellow race, especially the latter, because of their characteristic sobriety:  a plate of rice is their usual daily ration; they endure the difficult work with admirable resignation; they are accustomed to hardships, and the miserable conditions in which these unfortunate people live are inappropriate for European farmhands, who will never be able to bear them.

Honolulu, March 31 1916,  Consul de España, Luis Guillén Gil




50 Responses to Archive / Archivo: Heliópolis

  1. JoAnne says:

    Wow, thank you for this account via various papers. The immigration worked out for the few who made it to California, but Hawaii sounded

  2. Catherine Perez Moy says:

    My Grandma and Grandpa Perez left Spain for Hawaii and ultimately landed in Fairfield , near Vacaville, CA. Grandpa Perez was very politically active and helped raise money for the rebels I n the Spanish civil war. I am doing research for a book about the immigration and I’m looking for sources who know about the conditions on the ships and in Hawaii. I hear varying reports from slavery-style work to less cruel conditions. Please contact me if you can help in any way. Catherine Perez Moy.

  3. espanyu says:

    Conditions on the ships –particularly the Heliopolis and the Orteric– were quite awful, there’s no doubt about that. But as you point out, reports on the conditions in Hawaii vary widely, from “slavery-like” to “not that bad.” The disparity might be a function of different practices at different plantations; nonetheless, one thing is clear: the 8,000 immigrants voted with their feet –most re-emigrated to California, despite the constant efforts of the planters to retain them, which are thoroughly covered in the Hawaiian press of the period.

  4. Carmen Mena Perez says:

    My father, Joseph Gonzales Mena, was 7 years old when his family left Spain for Hawaii on the Willesdon. He remembers getting the measles and refused to be separated from his family. He
    thought that there were 16 children that died from the measles and were buried at sea. He remembers that the conditions were bad but being a kid he just had a good time. He and his family stayed in Hawaii from 1911 to 1924. He thought that Hawaii was a paradise. He learned a trade on the Island of Oahu and became a plumber. They then migrated to the mainland and he and his family never were sorry that they left Spain.

  5. My father, Joseph Perez Franco was born in San Martin, del Tessorillo Provincia de Cadiz (1902-1984). He came to Honolulu on the S.S. Orteric in 1911 with his two brothers Chris, Frank and mother Joaquina. She was born in the town of Casares, Provincia de Malaga. My mother’s parents met on board the S.S. Harpalion and were married in Hawaii shortly after landing. He was from Almoradi, Provincia de Alicante, Pais Valenciano and my grandmother Teresa was born in Penyarroya-Pueblo Nuevo, Provincia de Cordoba. All of my family were in the San Francisco Bay area by 1924 settling mostly in the Union City area. My family instilled in us to NEVER forget our Spanish Heritage but also NEVER forget how lucky we are to be AMERICAN’S.

    Would love to share stories and family genealogy with anyone interested.

    Joe Perez Quiles
    Tracy, CA

    • espanyu says:

      Dear Joe,
      Thanks so much for the note.

      Do you know Michael Modesto Cáceres Capressi? He lives in Napa, his story is very similar to yours, and he’s done a massive amount of genealogical research, as well as visiting Spain and Hawaii.

      I don’t know if you do Facebook, but if you do, you should look at our page

      as well as the

      hawaiian spaniards page.

      They both turn up interesting things almos every day.

      Please stay in touch.

      Best wishes,
      James D. Fernández

    • Steven Alonzo says:

      On the manifest your grandmother is listed as Joaquina Franco Perez on line 23:

      Jose Quiles Mora’s mother was listed as Milan Mora Martinez on the manifest, see line 30:

    • Louise G. Stitih says:

      I am Louise (Louisa) Reyes Gallardo Stith We may have lots of info in common. Both of my parents familes came on the Orteric. Dad’s from Lalinia and Cadiz and Mom’s from Cabra, Cordoba. Reyes lived in Fairfield a number of years .(Dad’s the Gallardo”s) in San Francisco and moved to Winters in the early 1920’s. Billl and I live in Vacaville .Club Espanol in Roseville may interest you. I am currently club president.
      my Email address is (

    • Linda Arias Fox says:

      My grandparents and great grandparents and g aunts and uncles all came to Hawaii on the orteric in 1911 too. I am trying to research my family’s history and would love to hear stories and maybe be able to share some. They all came to mainland California in 1913 and settled in Penryn. I remember as a child visiting a very old family friend living in Tracey!

  6. Forgot to add my grandfather’s name from Almoradi!!! Jose’ QUILES Mora (1884-1958) He farmed in the Decoto (Union City area). The house he built still stands on 5th St. Union City and is lived in by one of his grandsons.

  7. Hola James,
    I haven’t posted on FACEBOOK (my children use it extensively) but I may look into this link. I have always been interested in our Spanish roots and have also been to Spain to visit with cousins. The name you mentioned “Michael Modesto Caceres Capressi” does not immediately ring a bell but I would certainly like to get in touch with him.
    Did your family also come over during this time from Spain? If so, where did they go?

    Thank you for answering my message,
    Tracy, CA

  8. Suzanne Ward says:

    Wow, what a treat to see this site. So the stories passed down about “living on the docks” until the ship was ready, were true. How brave my great grandparents were to try to find a better life. How courageous my great grandmother was to embark to a distant land, pregnant and delivering a baby during the ships ? 42 d voyage to the Hawaiian Islands. I have see the ship’s manifest online years ago and saw my ancestors names and descriptions of their hair and eye color. I am hoping to see this again at the Bishop’s Museum archives in Honolulu this Fall.
    Thanks for posting this because I never understood the context in which they chose to immigrate since I was too young to ask these questions while that generation was still alive.
    Suzanne Ward, Great Grand daughter of Manuel Butelo from Cordoba, Spain

    • Melinda Butelo says:

      Suzanne hello Manuel Butelo is my Grandfather he was born in 1901 I never met him.. trying to find out what I can here,, nice to meet you I have blue eyes dark and dark hair

    • Yvonne Cook Dress says:

      Suzanne: Thanks for keeping the heritage alive by finding this site for all your cousins to view. Your mom, Yvonne – daughter of Fuensanta Butelo who was 8 yrs old when she made this journey on the Heliopolis to Hawaii.

      • Suzanne Ward says:

        So mom, on the ship’s manifest, Grandma is listed as “Antonia”. Do you have a copy of it?

  9. Melinda Butelo says:

    My Great Grandparents and Grandfather from Cordoba were one of the families who came to Hawaii and then decided to go on to San Francisco where they settled… I am just now connecting the dots.. this article was very insightful….for 59 years All I knew was they came from Cordoba and settled in San Francisco in 1907 …They had money but to read of what they endured made me sick.. But they made their way to California.. with 6 children..I’m still trying to uncover my family history and would appreciate any info you have.. Family was The Butelo~~~ Manuel and Conception Sanchez Butelo and my grandfather Manuel Jr..
    Thanks Best regards Melinda Butelo

    • Cristobal Navas says:

      La familia Butelo-Sanchez es la primera que aparece en el listado de pasajeros del SS Heliopolis, que zarpa del puerto de Malaga en 1907.
      Mauel Butelo y Concepción Sánchez e hijos: Josefa, Encarnación, María, Antonia, Manuel, Carmen y Joaquin Butelo Sánchez; todos con ultima residencia en la ciudad de Córdoba.


      Cristóbal Navas

    • Suzanne Ward says:

      Dear Melinda,
      sorry I didn’t see this sooner!

  10. Gene Medina says:

    My great grandparents, Juan Medina Mingorance (49) and Josefa Cobo Rodriguez (39) were aboard with their children (my great aunts and uncles): Consuelo (18), Juan (12), Rosaura (7) and Paulino (6). I have a copy of the ship’s manifest and photos of the ship Heliopolis (moored in Malaga Bay and of the “passengers” waiting on the docks. Would like to connect to gather more information about the experiences in Hawaii. Have read the arrival articles in the Honolulu Sun but don’t know which plantation they were sent to— may have been near Hilo. I think they left in July, 1909 due to the living conditions and desire to follow friends to California. Ended up in Vacaville CA. If you want to email and share additional info let me know. Best regards. Gene Medina

    • Cristobal Navas says:

      La familia Medina-Cobo(s), naturales de Otivar (Granada).

      Cristobal Navas

    • Julie Silliman (Rodriguez) says:

      Hello Gene-
      My Great Grandmother was Anna Mingorance. She married Jose Rodriguez. Jose and Anna came to Hawaii under the the assumed names of Antonio and Carmen Guerrero (their deceased friends). This came about as my Great Grandfather lost his millitary discharge papers. They came to Hawaii on the SS Heliopolis on Ap[ril 26, 1907. Anna Mingorance is the daughter of Cecilio Mingorance Aneas. Cecilio is the first cousin of Juan Median Mingorance. I am definitely interested in connecting to share information. I have family herritage and stories which have been documented in my Great Uncle’s autobiography. Please feel free to connect with me at

      Warm Regards,
      Julie Silliman (Rodriguez)

  11. Melinda Butelo says:

    Grand daughter of Manuel Butelo from Cordoba, Spain

  12. Marcos García Narváez says:

    My paternal grandparents immigrated to Hawaii in 1911. In 2011, I returned to my roots and am living in Málaga, Spain.

  13. Marcos García Narváez says:

    My grandparents worked on a sugar plantation known today as the runway of Maui’s Kahalui Airport

  14. Marcos García Narváez says:

    Hola Cristóbal …. La información que puedo aportar lamentablemente igual es poca. De mi abuela: se llamaba Rosalía García y de segundo apellido Muñoz o Paris. Se fue de Estepona (Málaga) con dos años en el Willesden, creo que en 1911. Se que tuvo dos hermanos mayores que viajaron con ella y sus padres. Uno de los hermanos se llamaba Jose.

    De mi abuelo tengo menos información. Se llamaba Adrián García y de segundo apellido Muñoz o Paris. Era natural de Cilleros (Cáceres ) y creo recordar que viajó en 1913 pero no lo se con seguridad.

    Cual información que pudieras aportar sería inmensamente agradecido.

    Marcos García Narváez
    Calle Esperanto 8, 2D
    Málaga 29007
    Tlf 669510610

    • Steven Alonzo says:

      Rosalia Garcia Muñoz is listed on the manifest for the Willesden which departed Gibraltar 12 Oct 1911. Her parents: Juan Garcia Vallecillo and Juana Muñoz Garcia. The children are listed as: Jose Garcia Muñoz 16, Juan Garcia Muñoz 14 and Rosalia Garcia Muñoz 3. The original manifest can be viewed:

      The relative listed for the family was Jose Garcia Vallecillo, no doubt Juan’s brother in Estepona.

    • Steven Alonzo says:

      1913 Willesden, page 1432, image 297
      Garcia Pinto Escolastica 42 F W
      Alonso Galvan Victoria 22 F S
      Garcia Hidalgo Jusmina 13 F S
      Garcia Hidalgo Adrian 10 M S
      Garcia Hidalgo Francisca 5 F S
      Garcia Hidalgo Eladia 3 F S
      Garcia Hidalgo Isabel 1 F S

      It is definitely a family group but the names don’t quite fit. The children are named Garcia Hidalgo which would mean their mother’s first surname was Hidalgo. Unless it was recorded backwards and their names were Hidalgo Garcia. Do the names of Adrians siblings match?

    • Aaron Alejandro Olivas says:

      Hola Marcos,

      Qué curioso, mis bisabuelos Gregorio Vázquez Rivas y Lucía Álvarez Ribero eran naturales de Cilleros también. Murieron en Oakley, California, en 1957 y 1961. Emigraron a las islas Hawaii en febrero de 1913 en el S.S. Willesden desde el puerto de Gibraltar. Seguro que tu abuelo viajó en el mismo barco al mismo tiempo…¿o aún con mis bisabuelos desde la sierra de Gata a Gibraltar? Según mi abuela, su madre Lucía tuvo una amiga (la madrina de mi madre) que era sirviente en la Casa Grande (el palacio de los Vaca) en Cilleros, y fue ella que les dio la idea a mis bisabuelos de emigrar…pero a Brasil, a cortar tabaco. Sin embargo, cuando los cilleranos llegaron a Andalucía, los barcos a Brasil ya habían salido. Entonces, la alternativa fue bordar el Willesden a Hawaii, habiendo muchos plazos en el barco. Luego se fueron a trabajar para HC&S en la isla de Maui. Es posible que, llegando a Honolulu, tu abuelo eligiera ir también a Maui con sus paisanos. Lo siento que no puedo ofrecer más datos, pero tal vez esta pequeña historia te ayuda.

      Un abrazo desde California,

      Aaron Alejandro Olivas
      University of California, Los Angeles

      • Cristobal Navas says:

        Buenas noches Aaron, en el Willesden (1913) , viajaron algunas familias más de CiIlleros (Caceres), entre 4 a 6 famililas. Entre estos otros pasajeros naturales de Cilleros; tambien hay más personas con el apellido Vazquez y Rivero, pero no en el mismo orden que tus bisabuelos. De la provincia de Caceres hay muchos pasajeros; de los pueblos de Caceres que más emigrantes aportan : Guijo de Galisteo

        Cristóbal Navas

  15. That is correct! Thank you! I also have the manifest! Joe

  16. My grand fathers mother’s full name was Petra Maria de Milagros Mora Martinez born 29 June 1859 and died sometime around 1935. From Almoradi, Pais Valenciano, Espana. Thanks again! Joe

  17. Yvonne Dress says:

    Suz, I have a copy of the ship’s manifest from Hawaii to San Francisco. Mom

    • Melinda Mindy Butelo says:

      Hi Yvonne My Grandfather Dads Dad: Manuel Juan was on the ship Are we related? Thanks.. Love to hear about him if you know…

  18. Marcos García Narcaez says:

    Muchas gracias Aaron, que casualidad! Efectivamente, viajaron en la misma embarcación en 1913. Curiosamente, mi abuelo y su familia se trasladaron a Maui también después de llegar en Honolulu. En Oakley, vivieron toda la vida en Star Street. Por lo que tengo entendido, en esa calle vivieron muchas familias procedentes de Hawaii. Un saludo!

  19. Aaron Alejandro Olivas says:

    Gracias por los datos, Cristobal. Siempre estuve curioso si más cilleranos (o extremeños en general) en aquella época emigraron también a Hawaii, sabiendo que la mayoría de los emigrantes eran andaluces y castellanos.

    Marcos, seguro que nuestras familias se conocían íntimamente: en Cilleros (que en 1913 tuvo menos que 2,000 habitantes), en Maui (donde trabajaban en la misma plantación de azúcar de HC&S), y finalmente en Oakley (mi abuela Dolores vivió en la esquina de 3rd Street y Ruby desde 1920 a 1938, cuando se casó y mudó a Stockton). ¿Naciste y viviste en Oakley antes de mudarte a Málaga?

    ¿Has estado en Cilleros? Todavía tengo familia ahí y he ido varias veces a las romerías de San Blas y la virgen de Navelonga, si quieras más información sobre el pueblo y la sierra de Gata. Espero que sigamos en contacto (

    Un abrazo,


  20. Marcos García Narcaez says:

    Hola Aaron! Muchas gracias. Efectivamente, Ruby y Star Streets en Oakley están muy cercas así que estoy seguro que nuestras familias se conocían seguramente. Mi padre y sus hermanos nacieron en Oakley. A finales de los años 60 mi padre vino a España a conocer a sus familiares por parte materna y dio la casualidad que su familia y mi madre eran vecinos. Con el tiempo se casaron y se fueron de vuelta a California. Pero no a Oakley, sino a Sacramento. Y allí nací yo. Pero la sangre tira mucho y yo sabía que tarde o temprano yo tenía que acabar en España y aquí llevo algo más de dos años, en Málaga.
    Por parte paterna (mi abuelo), son de Cilleros. Yo tenía mucha curiosidad de conocer ese pueblo y quedé encantado. La gente un encanto. Curiosamente, había algunas personas que las veía y parecía que estaba viendo a algunos de mis tíos. No conozco ningún familiar allí, sin embargo, los rasgos genéticos los noté enseguida. Claro que sí, estamos en contacto ….. Mi email es ….. Un saludo! Marcos García Narváez

  21. larache1968 says:

    Hola Aaron
    Conoces esta página?

    Patricia Steele, Steven Alonso y yo, estamos trabajando en los listados de todos los barcos con pasajeros españoles que emigraron a Hawaii, de modo que estamos confeccionando una lista global y parcial de todos los españoles que podrá ser consultado bien por apellido o por localidad. Actualmente me falta muy poco para terminar con el SS Ascott (1913); repasar algunas notas en las que tengo dudas.
    Aaron, respecto a tus bisabuelos y ya que fueron pasjeros del Willesden; me podrías ampliar algun dato referente a su fecha de nacimiento, localidad, fecha de defuncion y localidad. Son datos adicionales que amplian un poco la informacion de estos pasajeros.

    Cristóbal Navas

  22. Mindy Butelo says:

    Not sure if you can read my posts but Id love to learn more about my Spanish Family the Butelo’s ,,,Manuel Juan a young child when his parents came was my grandfather,, Suzanne Ward do you know of any information about them other than what’s here? I live in orange county California and again am very interested in finding out my heritage
    I have connected with some Butelos on Facebook too.
    Thanks for your posts.. so cool finding blood relatives.. There are very few of us Butelos in the US

  23. Suzanne Frances ( my grandmother Butelo's name) Ward says:

    Hi Mindy,
    I mean cousin! My facebook is Sue Ward and we are neighbors. I live in San Diego. I grew up in the bay area and my mom and sibs still live up there. I don’t go on this blog often so I am glad you found me. I do follow the Hawaiian Spaniard facebook posts once in a while. If you want a copy of the family photo that I posted, let me know and I will email on an attachment. Perhaps this summer we can get together and I will show you what ever pics I have. there is a Butelo-Herrero reunion every year around the 4th of July…I rarely have a chance to get up to Sunnyvale to go.

    • Melinda Mindy Butelo says:

      Thanks again Cousin! I will send a friend Request Finding You is amazing! I have little info about my Grandfather Manuel Juan
      My father was named Jon Manuel Butelo
      He was born in 1924 In San Francisco..
      He grew up not knowing his father Manuel.. the last time he saw him was 1927 .. I would love to fill in the blanks ! Thanks so much

  24. Bailee Moreno says:

    My great grandma moved from Spain to Hawaii, and then later to the Bay Area of California. She was very young when she got to Hawaii, and she came with just her father. I don’t know much about her story, but I’m doing research for a school project. I just needed to know if she would have gone to school, or worked int the plantations. Thanks!

  25. Ana Gil Guerra was 7 years old when she boarded the Helipolis in 1907 with her father, a brother and a sister. They were from Tolox, Malaga. The manifest can be seen at Her father is shown as married but no wife is listed.
    1-Heliopolis 90 104 14 Gil Gil BARTOLOME GIL GIL 45 M M TOLOX (MALAGA)
    1-Heliopolis 90 104 15 Gil Guerra RAFAEL 17 M S TOLOX (MALAGA)
    1-Heliopolis 90 104 16 Gil Guerra ISABEL 13 F S TOLOX (MALAGA)
    1-Heliopolis 90 104 17 Gil Guerra ANA 7 F S TOLOX (MALAGA)

  26. Bailee Moreno says:

    Thank you so much, this helped a lot :)))

  27. Buenas tardes, Luis. He descubierto recientemente que en uno de los viajes del Orteric fueron hacia Hawaii unos antepasados míos, Encarnación Huércano Córdoba junto con su marido José Gallardo Fernández y los hijos de ambos, José y Antonio. No he podido averiguar nada más sobre ellos, pero me ha hecho mucha ilusión verlos en una de las listas de pasajeros del buque Orteric en 1911. Un saludo y gracias por tu trabajo.

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