Sunday, June 26, 2011

James J. Fern

One of the mysteries I'd like to find out is where in England my 3rd great grandfather came from and why he came to Hawaii.  Some of his descendants seem to think he came on a whaling ship, which is highly possible.  Many years ago another descendant, told me the town he came from in England, but I've searched all my records and emails and can't find the message.  It started with the letter L is all I can remember.

What we have on James J. Fern is either he came from the mainland, but most people have him coming from England.  A record at states that he was married to Kaipua Kaipo Luahoomae in 1843, most likely in Maui, since that's were his 1st nine children were born.  Kaipo was born 1826, Keokea, Maui and was a descendant of chiefs who had served with Kamehameha the great, during his campaign to unite the islands.  Their children were:

William (1844-1904)
Robert (1850-1906)
Caroline Kamakee (1952-1924)
Mary Ann (1853-1918)
Kealalaina (1854- )
Elizabeth Keohokaleleonalani (1857-1922)
Henry Lipine (1859-1928)
James Joseph Keliikoliola (1860-1920)
Maria Kalola(1860-1936)
John James (1861-1912)
Kamana (1867- )
George James (1871-1928)
Joseph James (1872-1920)
Isabella (1878-1929)

All the children married, except Kealalaina, I have no record for her.

Around 1860/61 the family moved to Kohala on the Big Island, John James Lipine Moeone Fern being the 1st child being born there.  According to my records, Kaipo had her 1st child, William at age 18 and her last child, Isabella at age 52!  I've always suspected that the youngest or maybe even the 3 youngest children are actually her grandchildren that she raised, which was not uncommon at all in Hawaiian families.

Where in England was he born?  Why did he come to Hawaii?  What did he do on Maui? and why did the family relocate to Kohala?  These are the questions I have on the Fern family.


  1. My husband's great grandmother is Isabella Maua Fern (born 1878 in Honolulu), her father was James George Fern and her mother, as we have noted in his genealogy, was Alice Keawemahi. However, I have seen somewhere else (other documents) that Kaipua Luahoomae is listed as mother. James George Fern was a carpenter/shipbuilder from England. I will research further for his place of birth.

  2. E kala mai! I meant James Joseph, not GEORGE, Fern!

  3. ! am still working on this too..long overdue but it will happen Charles.According to documents King Kamehameha had awarded him some land in connection with his shipbuilding. Do you have the document? - I do and if you want it let me know ....Ku'ulei


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