Hawaii Becomes 50th State

Hawaii Becomes 50th State

The modern United States receives its crowning star when President Dwight D. Eisenhower signs a proclamation admitting Hawaii into the Union as the 50th state. The president also issued an order for an American flag featuring 50 stars arranged in staggered rows: five six-star rows and four five-star rows. The new flag became official July 4, 1960.

The first known settlers of the Hawaiian Islands were Polynesian voyagers who arrived sometime in the eighth century. In the early 18th century, American traders came to Hawaii to exploit the islands’ sandalwood, which was much valued in China at the time. In the 1830s, the sugar industry was introduced to Hawaii and by the mid 19th century had become well established. American missionaries and planters brought about great changes in Hawaiian political, cultural, economic, and religious life. In 1840, a constitutional monarchy was established, stripping the Hawaiian monarch of much of his authority.

In 1893, a group of American expatriates and sugar planters supported by a division of U.S. Marines deposed Queen Liliuokalani, the last reigning monarch of Hawaii. One year later, the Republic of Hawaii was established as a U.S. protectorate with Hawaiian-born Sanford B. Dole as president. Many in Congress opposed the formal annexation of Hawaii, and it was not until 1898, following the use of the naval base at Pearl Harbor during the Spanish-American War, that Hawaii’s strategic importance became evident and formal annexation was approved. Two years later, Hawaii was organized into a formal U.S. territory. During World War II, Hawaii became firmly ensconced in the American national identity following the surprise Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor in December 1941.

Hawaii Admission Act

The Admission Act, formally An Act to Provide for the Admission of the State of Hawaii into the Union (Pub.L. 86–3, 73 Stat. 4, enacted March 18, 1959 ) is a statute enacted by the United States Congress and signed into law by President Dwight D. Eisenhower which dissolved the Territory of Hawaii and established the State of Hawaii as the 50th state to be admitted into the Union. [1] Statehood became effective on August 21, 1959. [2] Hawaii remains the most recent state to join the United States.

  • Introduced in the Senateas S. 50
  • Passed the Senate on March 11, 1959 (76–15)
  • Passed the House on March 12, 1959 (323–89, in lieu of H.R. 4221)
  • Signed into law by PresidentDwight D. Eisenhoweron March 18, 1959

Sandalwood and Sugar

Americans came to take advantage of the island’s sandalwood. Later, in the 1830s, they moved their focus to the sugar trade. By the 1850s, the sugar industry became a well-established sector in Hawaii. Americans and others came to plant sugar cane on the islands and cultivate it, and missionaries came to “modernize” the Hawaiian people. This did a lot to change the traditional political, economic, religious, and cultural ways of life in Hawaii that had, up until this point, been around for over one thousand years. Talk about taking a turn!

Some would argue this was an opportunity that lay the path to bring the people of Hawaii into the future. Others would say it was the beginning of the end. Here is what happened.

Hawaii had always had a king or queen. In 1840, King Kamehameha III was stripped of his authority, and a constitutional monarchy was established. The king himself helped do this, as part of a change to “modernize.”

During the following decades, the sugar trade in Hawaii continued to blossom. This pushed Hawaii to enter into several political and economic treaties with the US from the 1840s through the 1880s.

How Statehood Changed Hawaii's Economy

M ainland Americans have been making their mark on Hawaii &mdash in ways both welcome and unwelcome &mdash since the early 1800s, when Protestant missionaries first landed there and, per TIME, &ldquodevised a Hawaiian alphabet, soon printed a speller&hellip promoted monogamy, [and] introduced the spare, hardy architecture of New England whaling ports.&rdquo

While the U.S. annexed Hawaii as a territory in 1898 under somewhat shady circumstances &mdash and over the objections of many Hawaiians &mdash by the 1950s most Hawaiians were in favor of being admitted as a state. When the state reached that milestone, on this day, Aug. 21, in 1959, just seven months after Alaska had joined the Union, Hawaii underwent immediate and radical change, largely in the form of unprecedented economic growth.

The cluster of islands that comprise America&rsquos 50th state are some of the world&rsquos most isolated: 2,390 mi. from the West Coast and 4,000 from Japan. But with statehood came a proliferation of commercial flights that connected Hawaii to the mainland and brought a massive influx of tourists.

Three days after Hawaii was admitted to the Union, Pan American became the first airline to provide jet service to the newest state, according to the Los Angeles Times. This convenience changed the face of Hawaiian tourism entirely. &ldquoThe islands, which had been the playground of well-heeled visitors, most of whom traveled by ship, began welcoming middle-class travelers,&rdquo the LA Times notes.

As TIME reported in 1966, the years after statehood became a &ldquojet rush,&rdquo in which the number of passengers arriving annually at Honolulu&rsquos airport more than doubled &mdash many of them vacationers who snapped up $100 tickets for the five-hour flight from Los Angeles or San Francisco. TIME observed:

No fewer than 18 airlines are begging the [Civil Aeronautics Board] to let them put new flights on the Honolulu route. Already, tourists spend $300 million a year, making tourism Hawaii’s largest civilian source of income, larger than the pineapple and sugar businesses combined. To accommodate them, some $350 million worth of hotel construction has gone up in the past five years. The boom has also created new jobs to absorb the unemployment created by automation on the plantations.

This jet-fueled increase in tourism was not Hawaii&rsquos only area of growth. The state also saw a rapid expansion in light industry &mdash companies producing &ldquoeverything from muumuus to mirrors,&rdquo per TIME &mdash and diversification in agriculture. The flurry of commercial activity led to a corresponding boom in development: In 1964, construction spending was up nearly 20 percent from the previous year, and included a $27 million high-rise on Waikiki Beach that was then the world&rsquos largest single-unit apartment building, according to TIME.

Additional projects included a $14 million business complex in downtown Honolulu as well as freeway expansions and new planned communities. Other signs that 1964 was a banner year for the Hawaiian economy, by TIME&rsquos account: &ldquoFour new mattress factories have been opened, and Schlitz is about to build a 100,000-barrels-a-year brewery near Pearl Harbor.&rdquo

Read more from 1959, here in TIME’s archives: Hawaii: The Big Change

This Day in History 8/21: Hawaii becomes the 50th State

Most of us think happy thoughts when Hawaii is mentioned. Yet today is a day many Hawaiians mourn rather than celebrate. Today marks the 50th anniversary of Hawaii joining the union in 1959, and not everyone is happy about it.

Palm trees, beaches, surfing, loud shirts, luaus, hula dancers, an inordinate use of Spam in their cuisine–these are some of the things we consider when confronting our 50th State. Yet others would also add greed, quasi-slavery, colonial domination, exploitation and fraud, especially in the development of an independent Polynesian kingdom into a territory of the United States.

By the mid 1800’s, a series of American and European settlers, missionaries and businessmen had settled on the Hawaiian islands. They lived as subjects of the Hawaiian monarchy, yet many of them worked to undermine the authority of native peoples through land exploitation and monetary influence on local politics. Among these “subjects” was a businessman named Sanford Dole–cousin of the pineapple magnate James Dole–who would play an integral part in the story.

In 1887, the settlers, practically at gunpoint, forced the monarchy to adopt a constitution that stripped the monarchy of much of its power and dinsenfranchising Asians and poor Native Hawaiians. When Queen Lili’uokalani attempted to re-assert native authority on the island, the settlers overthrew the government in 1893–with not-so-subtle backing from the US military–establishing a “republic” with Sanford Dole as president. The 1898 annexation of Hawaii completed the conquest, as Hawaii became America’s Pacific outpost for resources, commerce and naval defense.

By 1959, the Hawaii Admission Act was proposed in Congress. Opposition popped up in all corners: southerners who feared a state governed by nonwhites would flout their efforts against segregation, conservatives that questioned Hawaiian patriotism, red-baiters who felt Hawaii was a Communist haven. One of the most vocal, though, were the Hawaiians themselves. Many Hawaiians felt the territory shouldn’t be American to begin with, let alone apply for statehood. Furthermore, there was a fear that non-Hawaiians, particularly Asians, would control the state upon admission.

Upon passage of the act in March, the referendum was put to Hawaiian voters in August. There were two options on the ballot: remain a territory or join the United States as a state. 140,000 votes were cast out of about 155,000 registered voters, and 93% of the vote was in favor of statehood. Less than 8000 opted for the territorial option.

Ballots cast in the 1959 Referendum on Hawaiian Statehood

Yet the independence movement had an ace up its sleeve. There was no option for independence, an oversight that has fueled the charge that the referendum was illegitimate. The subsequent anniversaries of Hawaii’s admission have been anything but peaceful. In 2006, for example, pro-and anti-US demonstrators clashed in Honolulu outside the Iolani Palace, seat of Hawaii’s government.

The state government, meanwhile, has acknowledged the tumultuous path to statehood, recognizing Queen Liliuokalani and other Hawaiian leaders as important in the story of the islands. They are cognizant of the vocal nature of the independence movement, yet stress the important progress on the islands as a result of statehood.

While the independence movement will probably not succeed (too much is invested in Hawaii for the US to just give it up), its history since the mid-19th century should give pause and allow us to reflect on the meaning of settlement, or establishment. Greed and exploitation started the path toward statehood. However, Hawaii is a major destination today, and is a strategic link in the Pacific for American military and diplomatic missions.

Hawaii became American for all the wrong reasons. It remains American for all the right reasons.

Grist is the only non-profit newsroom focused on exploring solutions at the intersection of climate and justice.

Grist is a nonprofit, independent media organization dedicated to telling stories of climate, justice, and solutions. We aim to inspire more people to talk about climate change and to believe that meaningful change is not only possible but happening right now.

Our in-depth approach to solutions-based journalism takes time and proactive planning, which is why Grist depends on our readers’ support. Consider becoming a Grist member today by making a monthly contribution to ensure our important work continues and thrives.

Hawaii Becomes 50th State - HISTORY

56 years ago today, Hawaii became the 50th state to join the United States.

On August 21, 1959, President Dwight Eisenhower signed the proclamation welcoming Hawaii into the United States. It was on this same day that the president ordered a new U.S. flag to be made, featuring 50 stars arranged in staggered rows: five six-star rows and four five-star rows.

The Republic of Hawaii was taken over as a U.S. protectorate (controlled territory) with Hawaiian-born Sanford Dole as president of the islands. During World War II, Hawaii was thrust into the spotlight following the unexpected Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor in December of 1941.

In March of 1959, the U.S. government approved Hawaii's statehood and in the following month the large majority of Hawaii's population voted to accept admittance into the United States. On August 21, 1959, Hawaii officially became the 50th state.

Click here for some of Hawaii's most astounding natural treasures:

Hawaii is known for its beautiful beaches, tourism. and President Obama, of course! Barack Obama was born in Hawaii and lived the first 18 years of his life off and on here. He often goes back for vacations, which causes quite the excitement.

Why Didn’t Guam or America Samoa Become a State Too?

Almost 18 years after the Pearl Harbor attack, Hawaii, considered a distant frontier of American settlement, was declared a US state in 1959. Since the 1820s, European Americans had settled down in Hawaii and established English as a language. Additionally, an American-style legal system had been introduced early on, and the US dollar was the main currency.

In the case of American Samoa, indigenous Samoans make up almost 90 percent of the population. Hence, it’s unlikely that American Samoa will ever become a US state. In the case of Guam, the indigenous Chamorros make up almost 37 percent of the population. The remainder includes Filipinos, Chinese, Whites, Japanese, Micronesians, Vietnamese, Koreans, and Indians. It’s highly unlikely that Guam will become a US state in the near future.

August 21, 1959: Hawaii becomes 50th state

The modern United States receives its crowning star when President Dwight D. Eisenhower signs a proclamation admitting Hawaii into the Union as the 50th state. The president also issued an order for an American flag featuring 50 stars arranged in staggered rows: five six-star rows and four five-star rows. The new flag became official July 4, 1960.

The first known settlers of the Hawaiian Islands were Polynesian voyagers who arrived sometime in the eighth century. In the early 18th century, American traders came to Hawaii to exploit the islands’ sandalwood, which was much valued in China at the time. In the 1830s, the sugar industry was introduced to Hawaii and by the mid 19th century had become well established. American missionaries and planters brought about great changes in Hawaiian political, cultural, economic, and religious life. In 1840, a constitutional monarchy was established, stripping the Hawaiian monarch of much of his authority.

A Brief Overview of Hawai‘i’s History

Hawaii’s history all begins with a volcano in the middle of the sea.

The Hawaiian Islands actually span many thousands of miles, each island sprouting up over a volcanic “hot spot” in the Pacific.

Arrival of the First People to Hawaii

Over the centuries, voyagers from throughout the Pacific Ocean found their way to these isolated islands. It was recently decided (during the Hawaiian Renaissance of the 1970s) that transpacific voyagers actually sailed their way here, rather than the previously considered “accidental” landings on our shores. These early navigators, which some say could have arrived as early as the 4th century (or as late as the 13th), originated from the Marquesas and Tahiti.

These settlers formed their own structured society on each island, each region containing their own ali‘i, or chief.

King Kamehameha the Great

Photo: Hawaii Tourism Authority (HTA) / Joe Solem

Legend has it that in 1758, Halley’s comet made its way across Hawaiian skies, portending the birth of the man who would eventually unite the islands: King Kamehameha the Great.

Although there are questions as to exactly when he actually was born, his place of birth has been verified to be in the Kohala District of the Big Island—and after both negotiations (Kaua‘i’s ruling chief agreed to recognize King Kamehameha as his king) and fierce battles (the most storied of which was the Battle at Nu‘uanu, where defeated warriors fell to their deaths from what is now the Pali Lookout).

The Influence of Western Contact on Hawaii’s History

Prior to this unification, Hawaiʻi was placed on Western maps in part thanks to Captain James Cook, who first landed at Waimea Harbor on Kaua‘i in 1778. He would return, this time to Kealakekua Bay on the Big Island, during the Makahiki season of 1779. Four months later, on February 14, he was killed on the shores of that same bay.

Western contact brought western ideas to Hawai‘i. Missionaries arrived in the early 1800s and soon, with the support of Queen Ka‘ahumanu (King Kamehameha the Great’s favored wife, and Queen regent for King Kamehameha II), the traditional kapu system of beliefs was put aside for Christian beliefs.

The economy of the islands changed with outside contact as well. Whaling was, at one point, a big part of the kingdom’s economy, especially on Maui, with Lahaina acting as a major whaling port. Later, agricultural interests such as the sandalwood trade, followed by sugar and later pineapple not only brought businessmen from around the world to Hawai‘i but labor from foreign countries. Workers from China, Japan and the Philippines settled on plantations to work the land. Many of the foods we eat today come from this period of eastern influence on the foods already found in Hawai‘i.

Changes in Hawaiian Culture

In the meantime, the traditional lifestyle of the native Hawaiian people was in flux. Many traditional ways were hidden and practiced in secret, as they clashed with the teachings of the Christian church.

With the death of King Kamehameha V in 1872, the House of Kamehameha effectively ended. Kamehameha V did not name a successor, and King Lunalilo was elected by popular vote. The next year, history repeated itself when King Lunalilo died without name an heir.

King Kalakaua’s Legacy

Photo: Star-Advertiser Archives

A second election named King David Kalākaua the new king, thus beginning the House of Kalākaua within the Hawaiian monarchy. Dubbed the “Merrie Monarch,” Kalākaua brought Hawaiian practices such as hula, chanting and traditional healing back to the forefront of the islands’ culture.

Kalākaua also toured the world with his Queen, Kapi‘olani. From visiting the foreign countries, he developed relationships with other kingdoms and governments and also formed his own ideas of what the Hawaiian monarchy should be like.

Photo: Star-Advertiser Archives

He was an innovator who built ‘Iolani Palace (the only royal palace on American soil) and was very interested in modern technology of the time. ‘Iolani Palace had indoor plumbing, a telephone (before the White House did), and the King also had electric lighting installed at the palace. Kalākaua also wrote Hawai‘i Pono‘i, which today serves as Hawai‘i’s state song.

A Shift in Power

Kalākaua’s power was diminished when he was forced to sign the 1887 Constitution of the Kingdom of Hawai‘i, also known as the Bayonet Constitution. This was drafted by a group of anti-monarchists.

Kalākaua died in 1891, and his sister Lili‘uokalani became queen. She tried to counter the Bayonet Constitution by drafting another Constitution that would return some power to the monarchy and grant voting rights to Native Hawaiians. These efforts failed, and in 1893, the Hawaiian Kingdom was overthrown.

The Republic of Hawai‘i was established on July 4, 1894 and Sanford B. Dole became President of the Republic.

Queen Lili‘uokalani was imprisoned after she was found guilty of being involved with the 1895 Counter-Revolution in Hawai‘i (she denied those charges at her trial). She was sequestered to a bedroom in ‘Iolani Palace it was during this time that she abdicated her throne.

The Queen was an accomplished composer and she wrote Aloha ‘Oe, The Queen’s Prayer (Ke Aloha o Ka Haku) and The Queen’s Jubilee, written to commemorate the Golden Jubilee of Queen Victoria of England. Even after her release from house arrest at ‘Iolani Palace, she continued to fight against Hawai‘i’s annexation to the United States.

Hawai‘i became a territory of the United States in 1900 and then, in 1959, Hawai‘i celebrated becoming the 50th State of the United States of America.

Timeline of Events of Hawaii’s History

It is generally believed Hawaii’s first permanent inhabitants sailed in voyaging canoes from the southern hemisphere islands of the Marquesas, between 300 and 800 A.D. Later waves of settlers arrived by the 12th century, this time from Tahiti.

Following is a timeline of events dating from the arrival in the Islands of the first European explorers:

Spanish sailors sight Hawaii, describing volcanic eruption in ship’s log.

Capt. James Cook of the British Royal Navy arrives on Kauai, renaming the island chain the “Sandwich Islands” in honor of his patron, the Earl of Sandwich. He is subsequently killed by Hawaiians on the Big Island in 1779.

Hawaii is placed under the protectorate of Great Britain.

Christian missionaries arrive from New England to convert the “heathen” and build churches, schools and houses. Missions are established in Kona (Big Island), Honolulu (Oahu) and Kauai.

Honolulu’s first Christian church is established at the site of the present Kawaiahao Church.

Queen Mother Keopuolani is the first Hawaiian to receive a Christian baptism.

Kamehameha III assumes throne, ruling under the influence of the missionaries and granting them much power and freedom.

First sugar and coffee plantations begin operation in Manoa Valley on Oahu.

First Catholic missionaries arrive in the Islands.

Mexican and California cowboys arrive on the Big Island to teach ranchers about the cattle business.

First commercial production of sugar cane begins, anticipated to be the economic alternative to a declining whaling industry.

Ground is broken for the building of Kawaiahao Church (Honolulu).

Kamehameha III proclaims the first constitution of the Kingdom of Hawaii.

First Hawaii House of Representatives is called to order U.S. recognizes the Kingdom of Hawaii.

Lord George Paulet seizes Hawaii in the name of England but, later that year, the Islands are officially granted independence from Great Britain by British Admiral Richard Thomas (the namesake of Honolulu’s Thomas Square).

Construction of Washington Place (now the governor’s residence) is completed.

Epidemic of measles, whooping cough and influenza claims 10,000 lives, most native Hawaiians.

French Admiral Legoarant de Tromelin fails in attempted invasion.

First permanent Mormon missionaries arrive.

Legislature approves the import of contract labor to work Hawaii.

First Chinese contract laborers arrive.

Smallpox epidemic takes the lives of more than 5,000 Hawaiians.

Cornerstone for The Queen’s Hospital is laid.

Another dreaded disease, leprosy, enters Islands first lepers taken to Makanalua Peninsula (Kalaupapa) on Molokai in 1866.

First Japanese contract laborers arrive in the Islands.

Reciprocity agreement ratified by U.S. Senate, allowing Hawaii products to be shipped without tariff, leading to boom in economy.

King Kalākaua dedicates Queen Kapiʻolani Park (named for his wife).

Portuguese contract laborers arrive.

King Kalākaua and Queen Kapiʻolani move into ʻIolani Palace.

Kamehameha I Statue is unveiled — honoring the great Hawaiian leader who united the Hawaiian Islands under one rule for the first time.

Electricity arrives as five arc lamps are strung around ʻIolani Palace. (King Kalākaua was fascinated with electricity after meeting Thomas Edison electricity was installed in ʻIolani Palace five years before installation at the U.S. White House.)

Kamehameha Schools are founded in memory of Bernice Pauahi Bishop by husband Charles Reed Bishop.

Queen Liliuokalani writes her famous song, “Aloha Oe.”

Bishop Museum‘s original structure is completed.

Queen Liliuokalani is deposed in an overthrow of the Hawaiian monarchy by a group of American businessmen, led by Sanford B. Dole.

Republic of Hawaii established with Sanford B. Dole as president.

Hawaii becomes a territory of the United States.

Chinatown fire, set to “purify” areas infected with bubonic plague, rages out of control, destroying 38 acres of homes and businesses.

Moana Hotel — the “First Lady of Waikiki” and now the Sheraton Moana Surfrider — opens its doors.

James “Jim” Drummond Dole plants first pineapple crop in Wahiawa’s countryside (central Oahu). This is now the Dole Plantation.

Fort Shafter becomes the first permanent U.S. military installation.

University of Hawaii opens as the College of Agriculture and Mechanic Arts.

Swimmer and “Father of Modern Surfing” Duke Kahanamoku wins gold medal at the Olympics in Stockholm.

Honolulu Museum of Art is chartered.

Work begins on the structural foundation of Aloha Tower.

Inauguration of Lei Day.

The Royal Hawaiian Hotel (the “Pink Palace of the Pacific“) opens for business.

Pan American Airways Clipper makes first 2,270-mile trans-Pacific flight from San Francisco to Hawaii in 21.5 hours.

Japanese naval air forces attack Pearl Harbor more than 2,500 lives lost territory governor declares martial law.

Great tsunami hits Hilo, killing more than 159 people and causing $25 million in damage.

Hawaii admitted as the 50th state of the United States. William F. Quinn becomes the first elected governor of the new state, and Hiram Fong and Oren E. Long are both elected to the U.S. Senate.

A Boeing 707 lands in Hawaii, trumpeting the beginning of a massive increase in Island tourism.

Tsunami waves again hit the Big Island 61 lives are lost, mostly in Hilo.

The fiftieth star is added to the U.S. flag on July 4.

George Ariyoshi is elected governor, the country’s first of Japanese ancestry.

The Big Island’s Kilauea erupts (and has continued eruption since).

John Waihee, the state’s first governor of Hawaiian ancestry, is elected.

Hurricane Iniki strikes, causing devastating damage on Kauaʻi.

Hawaii Becomes 50th State - HISTORY

Price Index Rises for a 4th Month Wages to Go Up: Food and Taxes Push Figure in July Up .3% to 124.9 -- A Million to Benefit

Navy Drops Jet Seaplanes Program Cost 400 Million: 9 of the 14 Craft Ordered Have Been Delivered -- &aposTechnical Difficulties&apos Called Factor in Cancellation

Top Vietnam Red, Accused by Laos, in Peiping Parley: Ho Chi Minh, on Way Home From Moscow, Confers With Chinese Leaders: Communists Warn U. N.: Say &aposSerious Consequences&apos May Follow if Observers Go to Troubled Area

Prelate&aposs Arrest Is Stayed in Haiti: Warrant Is Suspended as Vatican Issues Warning of Excommunication

Britain Takes Lead in Key Power Field as Fuel Cells Work

A.F.L. - C.I.O. Hails Nixon Price View: Unionists Welcome Inflation Panel&aposs Switch in Stress to Economic Growth

Top Union Aides Return to Steel Talks Next Week

State Democrats Wary on Kennedy: Support of Wagner Reflects Idea Senator&aposs &apos60 Race is Too Fast, Too Soon

Power Cut Again in 68th St. Block

Sir Jacob Epstein, 78, Is Dead After Stormy Career as Sculptor

Governor in Norway for Wedding of Son Today

Books Airlifted to Moscow Fair: Hasty Volunteer Effort Here to Help Reopen Exhibit

Meany, Not Reuther, Named to U. N. Post

Washington, Aug. 21 -- Hawaii was officially proclaimed as the fiftieth state of the United States today by President Eisenhower at bipartisan White House ceremonies.

The Presidential action was followed immediately by the unfurling of a new fifty-star flag, which will not become official until next July 4. The thirteen alternate red and white stripes remain unchanged, but the stars on a field of blue are arranged in nine alternate staggered rows of six and five stars each.

The President welcomed the new state along with Alaska, admitted earlier this year. Not since 1912, when Arizona and New Mexico were added to the Union, had any new states been admitted.

The White House ceremony today was but a formality noting the Hawaiian citizens had boted to accept the obligations of statehood and had held elections to choose their officers.

The ceremony had a bipartisan character because a Democratic Congress had voted to carry out a Republican President&aposs recommendation in authorizing statehood for Hawaii.

The President sat at the long Cabinet table, flanked by Vice President Richard M. Nixon on his right and the House Speaker, Sam Rayburn of Texas, on his left. Behind them stood representatives of Hawaii, including one of her Senators-elect, Oren E. Long, 70-year-old Democrat, and the House member-elect, Representative Daniel K. Inouye, 34-year-old Democrat and war hero.

The other Senator-elect, Hiram Fong, a Republican, remained in Hawaii, as did Gov. William F. Quinn. The Senators will be seated on Monday after they have drawn lots to see whether they receive terms of approximately six years, four years or two years. The Governor was sworn in today at ceremonies at Honolulu.

Mr. Inouvye will also take his seat Monday.

President Eisenhower called it "truly an historic occasion" because for the second time within a year a new state had been admitted.

"All forty-nine states will join in welcoming the new one- Hawaii- to this Union," he said. "We will wish for her prosperity, security, happiness and a growing closer relationship with all of the other states. We know that she is ready to do her part to make this Union a stronger nation- a stronger people than it was before because of her presence as a full sister to the other forty-nine states. So all of us say to her, &aposgood luck.&apos"

As the President completed his remarks, Speaker Rayburn leaned over to chat with him.

Then the President remarked that he had been reminded by the Speaker of "one fact that has great historic significance."

"Next Monday will be the first time in 158 years there has not been a delegate in the membership of the Congress of the United States," he said.

"The delegates are gone and in their places we have Senators and Congressmen."

Hawaii and Alaska were represented by non-voting delegates in the House of Representatives while they were territories. Puerto Rico, as a commonwealth, continues to have a commissioner, without vote, in the House.

Among the Hawaiian officials witnessing signature of the proclamation were Edward E. Johnston, former Secretary of the Territory, and Lorrin P. Thruston, publisher of The Honolulu Advertiser.

The United States Secretary of the Interior, Fred A. Seaton, who had responsibility for the territories, was also on hand for the official birth of a new state.

The approval of statehood for Alaska last year in effect ended Hawaii&aposs long fight for statehood. For at that time it was generally understood that this year Hawaii&aposs turn would come.

Until this year Hawaii statehood bills had passed the House three times in the last decade. On one occasion the bill passed the Senate also, but was tied to an Alaskan measure that brought death to both.

Much of the opposition came from Southerners in Congress who took a dim view of the mixed racial strains of Hawaii&aposs population. Southerners also fought its admission on the same ground they fought Alaskan statehood. That is, the additional seats would weaken the South&aposs already diluted strength in the Senate.


HONOLULU, Aug. 23 (AP) -- This is the United States&apos fiftieth state at a glance:

POPULATION -- 585,000 (plus about 60,000 United States military personnel).

GEOGRAPHY -- Eight major islands are strung our 400 miles they lie 2,400 miles west of San Francisco, 3,850 miles east of Tokyo combined area is 6,400 square miles -- less than that of New Jersey. The islands are Oahu, Hawaii, Maui, Kauai, Molokai, Lanai, Nihau and Kahoolawe.

HISTORY -- 1778, Discovered by a British explorer, Capt. James Cook 1893, Queen Liliuokalani, last Hawaiian monarch, deposed in bloodless revolution by Americans, 1898, Annexed to the United States by Congressional vote 1900, Established as a territory of the United States 1903, First petition presented to Congress asking for statehood 1959, Congress passes statehood bill.

STATE SONG -- Hawaii ponoi (Our Own Hawaii)

STATE MOTTO -- Ua Mau Ke Ea O Ka Aina I Ka Pono (The Life of the Land Is Preserved in Righteousness)