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Scotland returns stolen ancestral bones from 1800s to Hawaii

Former Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell announced Wednesday that he is dropping out of the race to be Hawaii’s next governor.
Published: May. 4, 2022 at 11:15 AM HST|Updated: May. 4, 2022 at 2:43 PM HST
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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - The Office of Hawaiian Affairs received stolen ancestral bones from Scotland on Wednesday.

Most recently, the remains were on display at the Surgeons’ Hall Museum in Edinburgh.

The skull is believed to have been taken without permission in the 1800s by the Victorian anatomist Sir John Struthers.

Struthers encouraged his students to collect human remains while working overseas to study “different races of man,” and was later donated to the museum in 1896 said the Office of Hawaiian Affairs.

“Iwi kupuna sit at the core of Hawaiians’ connection to ancestry that strengthens and guides our understanding and interaction with our homeland, and with one another,” said Carmen Lindsey, OHA board chair.

“We extend our heartfelt thanks to Surgeons’ Hall Museums for recognizing the need to return the iwi kupuna to their one hanau (homeland).”

Surgeons’ Hall Museum Director of Heritage Chris Henry said this repatriation effort is meant to “demonstrate their commitment to the spiritual well-being of communities around the globe.”

OHA says it will ensure the iwi po’o is returned to the land.

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