Hawaiian Mission Children's Society (HMCS)


History of Hawaiian Mission Children's Society (HMCS) and founding of Hawaiian Mission Houses Historic Site and Archives

The HMCS, the parent organization of the Hawaiian Mission Houses, was established in 1852 to support the work of Congregational missionaries in the Hawaiian archipelago and other regions of the Pacific. 

Early in the 20th century, the HMCS turned its focus to collecting historical records of American Protestant missionaries working and residing in this region beginning in 1820. In 1923, the Society opened a museum in Honolulu on the site of the former headquarters of the Sandwich Islands Mission, which was established in 1820.

In 1974, the Mission Houses Museum received accreditation from the American Association of Museums and in 2011 was renamed the Hawaiian Mission Houses Historic Site and Archives. Today, Hawaiian Mission Houses functions as a historic site, a research archives, and a cultural center with rich and comprehensive collections of materials. It remains a primary source of information about the American Protestant missionary experience in Hawai‘i and serves as a time capsule of 19th-century American history. Membership in the historic site and archives is open to all.

Hawaiian Mission Houses Historic Site and Archives preserves the heritage and interprets the stories of the American Protestant Missionaries, their descendants, and their relationships with the people and cultures of Hawai`i, connecting with contemporary life, and encouraging a deeper understanding and appreciation for the complex history that continues to shape Hawai`i. (Mission Statement, December, 2011)

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Hawaiian Mission Houses Historic Site and Archives Strategic Plan for 2016-2020

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Hawaiian Mission Houses Historic Site and Archives enriches our community by fostering thoughtful dialogue and greater understanding of the missionary role and impact on the history of Hawai`i.

Collaboration between Native Hawaiians and the American Protestant missionaries resulted in, among other things, the introduction of Christianity, the development of a written Hawaiian language and establishment of schools that resulted in widespread literacy, the promulgation of the concept of constitutional government, the combination of Hawaiian with Western medicine, and the evolution of a new and distinctive musical tradition.

The mission of the Hawaiian Mission Houses is to interpret the legacy and to promote an open dialogue around the impact of the Protestant missionaries and their interwoven relationships with the people of Hawai’i.

Hawaiian Mission Houses Historic Site and Archives’ pre-eminent values include

·         Fostering openness and dialogue about historical and contemporary issues;

·         Honoring the legacy of language, literacy, and learning;

·         Nurturing the importance of identity, family, and genealogy;

·         Upholding our stewardship role in the care of the past for future generations;

·         Listening and engaging with others with respect, humility, and authenticity; and

·         Advancing the highest professional standards and fiscal responsibility.

Program Goal 1. Preserve, manage, and make collections more accessible to the general public.

Objective 1.1.Continue to digitize the collection and make it available on-line.
Objective 1.2.Inventory, catalog, and manage the collection.
Objective 1.3.Complete the Grant-In-Aid Climate Control Project to achieve climate control in the collections vault by the end of June 2016.

Program Goal 2. Develop and implement a comprehensive interpretive plan.

Objective 2.1.Create final written comprehensive interpretive plan for the entire site by the end of 2016.
Objective 2.2Create final written interpretive and furnishing plans for all rooms in the 1821 Mission House by the end of 2016.
Objective 2.3.Develop and/or support Hawaiian cultural programs.   
Action Step. 2.3.1. Build a Hale Mikanele and develop programs by the end of 2016.
Action Step 2.3.2.Develop and/or support Hawaiian education programs, such as weaving, music, dance, language, and so on.
Action Step 2.3.3.Complete the transcription, translation, and annotation and then digitize and place on our website the Chiefs’ Letters Collection by the end of 2016 and build the results into programming wherever possible.

Program Goal 3.Expand and develop programs for targeted audience groups.

Objective 3.1.Develop program strategies that attract more family groups.
Objective 3.2. Develop programs to attract more descendants.
Objective 3.3. Create programs that foster civic engagement and thoughtful dialogue.

Fed Tax ID – 99-0073491