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Hawaiʻi - Researching Place: Help: Finding Books

Resources available in the library and online to help you research place in Hawaiʻi.

General Search Tips

Search tips for searching in catalogs, databases, etc. 

  1. Search the Hawaiian place name as well as the name used today. If you do not know the Hawaiian place name, look it up. Place Names of Hawaii, may be a good place to start. 
  2. Know your mokupuni (island), moku (district), ahupuʻa (division), ʻili (smaller division within ahupuaʻa).
  3. Start with your ʻili, then work your way out to your ahupuaʻa, moku, mokupuni,etc.
  4. Try alternate spellings, try searching without and with diacritics (ʻokina, kāhakou).
  5. Try using "quotes" around phrases, e.g. "Kalihi Kai" 
  6. As you learn more about your place, expand your search terms. 
  7. Check with the library for more assistance searching. 



  1. Use the "English" button at the top to translate the site from Hawaiian to English instead of using Google translate or another 3rd party service
  2. Books are scanned and also have been OCR'd (Optical Character Recognition) to extract the text and make it searchable. Click "Original images" for the scanned image, click "Text" for the text-searchable version of the book. Note that spellings may make a difference in searching. E.g. in Place Names of Hawaii, Kalihi Kai appears as both "Kalihi Kai" and "Ka-lihi Kai."
  3. See Ulukau's help for more info.

Finding Books

Honolulu Community College Library
874 Dillingham Boulevard, Honolulu, HI 96817
Email: Web: