The earliest European contact with the Hawaiians was through the British, a relationship that would gradually grow over the years. While initially discovered by the British in the late 18th century, one of the first permanent contacts with the West were missionaries from the new Deist Christian denominations developing in the USA. Deist missionaries were treated cordially, but had little impact on the Hawaiians. Contacts with Russia were the next in line of European contacts, leading to a trading site in Kauii, but otherwise had little impact. The British were the most successful, however, returning to the islands with Anglican and Methodist missionaries who made a real impact on the royalty and peoples of Hawaii, converting many to Protestantism. The British also persuaded the Hawaiians to revoke he Russian trading mission in Kauii after collusion between the leaders of Kauii and the Russians to overthrow the rule of Oahu was discovered. In the 1840s, with the rise of the Dominion of Southern American and the establishment of trading ports in China, the British found the utility of a weystation more to the north of greater importance. The British and Hawaiians reached an accord, leading to the leasing of the Harbors of Oahu to the British Royal Navy and making Hawaii a protectorate of the British Empire. The Flag of the Kingdom of Hawaii was clearly inspired by that of the British East India Company, but instead of 13 alternating stripes, it had 9, representing the nine islands of Hawaii.