Discussion in 'Alternate History Books and Media' started by chris N, Feb 14, 2017.
Keep it up, Chris!
The 1880s saw the expansion of the Royal Hawaiian Navy as the country constructed new warships and the Naval Academy graduated more Midshipman. The Military Academy also graduated more officers to train an expanded Military. Hawaii was not looking for a fight but it was preparing to defend a Kingdom which had greatly expanded. In addition the Royal Hawaiian Navy was providing ships to help a scientific study of The Fall. Scientist were eager to find out the extent of the change in weather and try to figure when it might begin to reverse itself. Experts in Hawaii, India and Japan were puzzled. Many believed that it would take 25-40 years for the weather pattern to return to normal.
In 1886 a Royal Hawaiian Gunboat on patrol in the Marianas Islands engaged an unidentified Warship that was in the waters. It exchanged gunfire with the vessel and scored several hits on the much larger vessel. Unfortunately the hostile vessel returned the fire and the Hawaiian ship was forced to run aground in order to prevent it from sinking. A much Larger Warship ( former CSS Alabama) was in the waters and heard the gunfire. The captain ordered it to investigate and had General Quarters sounded. It arrived as the hostile vessel was disappearing. A rescue party was dispatched and aid was given in an attempt to save the crew and ship.
The result of the incident in the Marianas Islands had a big impact on the Royal Hawaiian Navy. The Legislature pushed through an additional spending bill to begin building more modern ships . Additional Naval assets were dispatched to the western Pacific and Guam saw the beginnings of a major upgrade in the islands defenses.
The SS Yokohama caring a special envoy from Japan sailed to the Hawaiian Islands. It was intercepted by two Hawaiian warships and escorted into Honolulu. The ship anchored and A Marine Guard detachment was placed at the pier. The envoy was taken to the State department where he handed a letter from the Emperor to the Hawaiian King. The meeting went on for two hours. The next day the envoy was escorted to the palace and with the Prime Minister, Secretary of State and two translators met with the King. The broke for lunch and returned for another two hours of talks. It became clear that the Emperor regretted the fact that his countries Navy had sunk an Hawaiian ship and he had authorized reparations be made.
It became clear to King Kamehameha IV and the Prime Minister and Secretary of State that the Emperor of the Rising Sun did not desire a conflict with Hawaii. He wanted to make things right and in fact there was a strong hint that he desired to establish relations with the Kingdom. There were a Polynesian people living on Formosa and he expressed a wiliness to allow them to immigrate to Hawaii. He also wanted to see trade between both nations.
The Kingdom of Hawaii informed the envoy did not seek a war with the Empire of the rising Sun and accepted the apology of the Empire and the reparations from the Empire.
Talks between the Empire of the Rising Sun and Hawaii continued in Hong Kong and by 1887 it had reached the point that an invitation was made for an Hawaii delegation to visit Tokyo. It was decided that William Kamehameha would head the Hawaiian delegation and would be joined by the Deputy Secretary of State and members of the Military.
It appeared that Hawaii, British Empire and the Empire of the Rising Sun had come very close to getting involved in a nasty war. Fortunately the Emperor of the Rising Sun held tight control of things and moved quickly to put out the possible Powder Keg. He was not interested in starting an unnecessary war. Hawaii also learned that it would need to start building powerful warships to secure the shipping lanes.
Hawaii began to carry out a survey to see what it would take to build a canal across the Central American Republic. The Hawaiians were eager for trade and only a canal might allow Hawaii's merchant fleet a chance to reach new markets.
Three teams moved to get the project underway.
Hawaii had lent a hand in the war that was fought in California. Hawaiian Navy ships turned the tied and protected the American flank. Still the Hawaiian Volunteers and the weapons that were provided allowed for the recover of territory which had been stolen by the Mexican dictators gang of thugs.
In 1884 The Shipyard in Hawaii completed the first new Steel Warship. It was armed with 6 inch guns and was built on a modified plan that the British Royal Nay had been considering. A second ship was then started and the Navy was hoping that by 1889 it would be able to build its first Battleship. Design work had been authorized by the Hawaiian Legislatures Armed Services Committee.
The demand for steel was rising in Hawaii but Hawaiian industry was still struggling to import enough raw materials to allow it to produce large amounts of it. This resulted in a struggle to balance the needs of the military versus the needs of an expanding economy and population. By 1886 Hawaii had managed to increase its production of steel by 16% but demand was still quite high. Hawaiian Companies were mining in Canada during the warm months and imports were flowing in from Brazil and the United States in the form of ores.
By 1888 the production of Steel had increased enough to allow the building of military equipment and civilian uses. It was at this point that Hawaii began to work on the construction of the American Canal in the Central American Republic. It was a project that would pay off big time in the long run but would cost a lot of resources to be used on it.
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