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Chapter 18 – Between Wars

The years after World War I were years of growth and change. Many problems had to be faced and worked through. Each legislature that met worked hard to pass laws that would be for the good of all citizens. There was much new construction, from small homes to large buildings. Health needs were met and taken care of in better ways than before, even though the Native Hawaiian population was one-tenth the size it had been one-hundred years earlier. The arrival of the bubonic plague in 1899 and the Chinatown fire of 1900 that followed were disastrous for the people of Hawai‘i. However, in general, a spirit of togetherness and optimism filled the islands.

O‘ahu trolley on Bishop Street in 1920s


Honolulu Chinatown fire of 1900
Chinatown fire of 1900 – Because it was found that many of the buildings in Honolulu’s Chinatown had been exposed to the plague, it was decided that certain ones should be burned down. However, the1900 fire quickly got out of control and most of Chinatown burned to the ground.
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