On our recent trip to Hawaii we chartered a helicopter on the Big Island with our good friends, Kristi and Terry Dallas. We toured the live volcanoes and got a bird's eye veiw of the lava flow. In addition, we coptered over the western border of the historic Kaelia Ranch. Not only does this historic ranch raise grass fed beef but they grow cacao.
The history of the ranch and cattle on the Island is fascinating! If you're like me, I don't usually think of ranching when I think about Hawaii! Below is a brief history of the paniolo and Hawaiian ranching from the Kealia Ranch's website.
Kealia Ranch is a 12,000 acre working cattle ranch located on the Big Island of Hawaii in South Kona. Founded in 1915, by L.L. McCandless, the Ranch has a rich paniolo (cowboy) heritage. Today, Kealia Ranch is involved in various diverse activities from ranching to wild game hunting, farming of cacao and coffee, to working to save endangered Hawaiian birdlife. The historic cowboy office has been converted into a country store specializing in local crafts and provisions.
The History of Ranching in Hawaii and where the name "paniolo" for their cowboys originated.
The simple-seeming gift of a few cattle given to Kamehameha I by Captain George Vancouver in 1793 made a major impact on the Hawaii's economy and ecosystem. It also spawned a rich tradition of cowboy and ranch culture that is still visible today.
In 1832, Kamehameha III sent one of his high chiefs to California to hire cowboys who could round up wild cattle and teach Hawaiians cattle and horse handling skills. Three Mexican-Spanish vaquero (cowboys) named Kossuth, Louzeida and Ramon began working on the big island of Hawaii, first breaking in horses to turn them into working animals, then rounding up and handling hordes of cattle.
Hawaii's cowboys became known as paniolo, a corruption of español, the language the vaquero spoke. The term still refers to cowboys working in the Islands and to the culture their lifestyle spawned.
Hawaiians proved themselves avid students, quickly picking up horsemanship, roping and other skills. Hawaiians became paniolo before the territories of the American West had cowboy or ranch traditions. Cowboys in the Pacific Northwest got their start in 1846; in California and Texas it was 1848. Because Hawaiians began their work with cattle and horses earlier, their paniolo traditions were strongly shaped by the Mexican vaquero heritage that stemmed originally from Spain.
Even today, traditional paniolo dress, as well as certain styles of Hawaiian formal attire, reflect the Spanish heritage of the vaquero. The traditional Hawaiian saddle, the noho lio, and many other tools of the cowboy's trade have a distinctly Mexican/Spanish look and many Hawaiian ranching families still carry the names of the vaqueros who married Hawaiian women and made Hawaii their home.
You don't have to travel all the way to Hawaii to get great grass-fed/ grass-finished beef and organic cacao. Head to Hawaii for the sun and fun and to just relax! Consider purchasing quality USDA certified grass-fed/grass-finished beef and cacao from the 2S Ranch located in North Central Texas. We make it easy....you can purchase your beef and cacao here, on our website!