A Contribution from GWS Member Donna Cunningham

In 1927 a beautiful Natatorium dedicated to the honor of the 101 residents of the Hawaiian Territory who died in the Great War was opened. Below are some photos of the current condition of the swimming complex with some excerpts from an article originally published in the Honolulu Star-Bulletin of August 5, 1996.

Detail Entrance Archway

The Natatorium was built during a national craze for natural-water swimming during the 1920s. . .[Today the facility is a worn out hulk. The residents of Hawaii approved $11.5 million several years ago for refurbishment, but local disagreements over health and commercial matters have stalled the project. ]

Main Entrance - February 2004
Main Entrance - Pre-Restoration
Inner View
View of the Distant
Waianae Mountains

Main Swimming Pool

Because the U.S. didn't enter the war until 1917, some of these citizens enlisted with other Allied powers to get into the fight. Songwriter Alex Anderson, for example, aviated with the British Royal Flying Corps, while Lanikai resident Carl Dolan flew with the French Lafayette Escadrille. Of the 101 names on the [commeration] plaque, 79 died serving with American forces, and the other 22 with Commonwealth troops.

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Original artwork & copy; © 1998-2000, The Great War Society