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'Iolani School Archives: About

The ‘Iolani School Archives collects, organizes, preserves and provides access to historical records of ‘Iolani School.


The ‘Iolani School Archives collects, organizes, preserves and provides access to historical records of ‘Iolani School.

What is an Archives?

Archives can refer to any of the following:

  • Records of enduring value created during the daily life and activities of an organization or person. Records can be in any format.
  • The program that administers and is responsible for historical records
  • The building or location that contains archives

How archives differ from libraries


  • contain unique and unpublished records, mainly primary sources
  • have materials that are arranged in the order in which they were created. As a result, items on the same topic may be in different collections.
  • are accessed using finding aids (tools that describe records e.g. lists, indexes, inventories), rather than by browsing the stacks
  • do not loan out their items (since these items are often unique and irreplaceable)


  • contain published materials e.g. books
  • have materials that are grouped by subject
  • are accessed through a catalog or by browsing shelves
  • allow items to be borrowed


’Iolani School has suspended on-campus academic operations and is CLOSED to the public.
This closure includes the ‘Iolani School Archives.
For more information see the school’s Coronavirus (Covid-19) Update page.

_ _ _

Normal Hours:
By appointment.
9:00 a.m.- 4:00 p.m.
Hours may vary.
For an appointment, please email

The Archivist reserves the right to restrict use of materials which are exceptionally fragile.

Collection Highlights

Materials collected reflect the programs, policy, organization, functions, and other activities related to the daily operations of 'Iolani School. They include:

  • School publications – catalogues, The ‘Iolani School Bulletin (alumni magazine, started 1960), alumni directories, parent and faculty calendars, faculty handbooks, ‘Ohana newsletters
  • Student publications – Ka Mo‘olelo O ‘Iolani (yearbook, started 1924), Imua ‘Iolani (student newspaper, started 1923), Mane O Ke Ola (literary magazine)
  • Photographs, slides
  • Audio and video recordings
  • Artifacts
  • Oral histories
  • Scrapbooks
  • Programs and Invitations
  • ‘Iolani Authors (published works)
  • Special collections on Sun Yat-Sen, Father Bray, Harold Keables


Subject Files

Reference files, organized by subject, that cover a variety of ‘Iolani School related topics, and include articles, newspaper clippings, fliers, pamphlets, and other miscellaneous items.


Information Requests

Please allow two weeks for information requests.


The 'Iolani School Archives provides the following services:

  • Student Research Support
  • Faculty / Curriculum Support
  • Administrative Research Support
  • Research Guides
  • Online Resources

Teaching and Learning

The educational program component strives to connect current ‘Iolani K-12 students with historical events. This is done by integrating into curriculum based on archival holdings to provide supplemental experiences with primary sources. Examples include Lower School students "meeting" historical images, and Upper School students investigating facets of topics to draw inferences.

Goals and desired outcomes include:

  • Develop teaching and learning methods to improve visual literacy.
  • Develop teaching and learning methods to improve archival literacy, i.e. archival organization and use of archival tools, for more sustained use of materials.
  • Develop student awareness of historic events and relevance to current events.
  • Develop interpretive, analytical, and evaluative skills.
  • Develop independent researchers who are prepared to implement skills in postsecondary education and beyond.

Primary and Secondary Sources

A primary source is created by someone who experienced an event firsthand, usually at or near the time of that event.

Examples of primary sources:
letter; photograph.

A secondary source is created after an event by someone not present at the event. It uses other sources to get information.

Examples of secondary sources:
biography; journal article


The 'Iolani School Archives contains materials, information, videos, images, etc., that may be considered sensitive or offensive according to today's standards. These items are indicative of societal attitudes at particular points in time. Such materials are retained and preserved in an effort to adequately represent the historical record.


Georgina Tom's picture
Georgina Tom
'Iolani School Archives
'Iolani School
Sullivan Center for Innovation and Leadership (SCIL)
2nd Floor
Next door to the Tsuzuki Group Library, Upper School.
(808) 943-2336

For More Information

For more information, schedule an appointment to conduct your research. Please note the Archives' open hours on the Welcome tab of this guide.

© The researcher assumes all responsibility for complying with Copyright and other Intellectual Property laws.