Day in History: January 18

Discovery of the Hawaiian Islands

The Hawaiian Islands remained unknown to the inhabitants of Europe for many centuries. Native Hawaiians, who belonged to a Polynesian family, lived here for 14 centuries before the appearance of European navigators.

At the end of the XVIII century, the English navigator James Cook was looking for a strait that would shorten the way from Europe to Asia. In December 1777, on the ships Resolution and Discovery, he sailed from Bora Bora and on January 18, 1778, discovered the islands of Oahu and Kauai, which are part of Hawaii. When the Europeans came ashore, the locals fell on their faces, mistaking them for gods.

Cook named the Sandwich Islands after his friend and patron, the first Lord of the British Admiralty.



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