Editors’ Note on Updating Content (Summer 2020)

The built environment is in constant flux, whether from demolition and new construction, renovations and additions, or changing function and use. Social protest and cultural progress can also transform the built environment, as we have witnessed this summer in efforts to remove monuments to the Confederacy from public spaces. (See “SAH Statement on The Removal of Monuments to the Confederacy from Public Spaces.”)

As a digital publication, SAH Archipedia strives to ensure that its content is up to date and that published texts accurately reflect physical conditions on the ground. To that end, our editors and authors are reviewing individual entries and essays to identify those that need to be updated.

While this work is ongoing and continuous, we want our readers to know that we are prioritizing updates to entries and essays (and illustrations and metadata) dealing with monuments to the Confederacy and memorials that otherwise symbolize oppression to indicate (1) the removal of statues and other forms of dismantling or transformation, (2) the renaming or retitling of buildings, parks, plazas, bridges, streets, and highways, (3) necessary contextualizing and interpretations in light of new historical research and scholarship.

As always, SAH Archipedia’s editors will work with authors and peer reviewers to maintain the highest standards of a scholarly publication.




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BYODO-IN TEMPLE

Tucked into a verdant valley at the foot of the Koolau Mountains, a reinforced-concrete replica of Japan's nine-hundred-year-old Byodo-In Temple serenely presides over a two-acre reflecting pond and encircling Japanese gardens. Elevated on concrete piers, the main building houses a nine-foot, two-inch gold and lacquered wooden statue of Buddha Amida, the largest wooden Buddha carved in the past nine centuries. The building serves as a columbarium, an integral part of the Valley of the Temples mortuary park. To the right of the complex is a shōji-doored teahouse which operates as a gift shop, and to the left is a three-ton brass bell sheltered in its own pavilion. more

CHONG HUA SHENG MWU GWUNG

The headquarters and worship center of the T'ien Tao Association, a Chinese syncretic religious tradition of twentieth-century origin, was characterized in February 1996 by Houston Press reporter Steve McVicker as a “stairway to heaven.” The white building escalates from three to five stories in height to frame a centered, freestanding geodesic sphere, eighty feet in diameter, with its facets of gold anodized aluminum. External stairs rise along each edge of the third-floor terrace to symmetrically bracket the extraordinary gold globe. The T'ien Tao temple signals modern Asian identity with science fiction intensity. more

WO FAT RESTAURANT

Wo Fat Restaurant explicitly embraces a "Chinese" style. A rarity within Honolulu's Chinatown, its dramatic, neon lit, pagoda-like tower frequently stands as a touchstone image of the district. The strong heritage statement is augmented by a tiled roofline and fretted transom windows. A second tower, which was part of a rooftop pavilion, was unsympathetically expanded to form an enclosed third floor. The restaurant was one of a number of Asian-styled buildings designed by Honolulu architect Yuk Tong Char. Other buildings included the Lau Yee Chai restaurant in Waikiki (1929), Chungshan Chinese Language School (1935), and Korean Christian Church (1938), all demolished, as well as Hilo Chinese Church (HA44). ... more

WORKERS’ SHACKS

Bruce Ariss Way is a narrow alley, the pedestrian-only continuation of Irving Avenue between Wave Street and Cannery Row. What was once an unofficial footpath between the row’s residential area, across the railroad tracks, and the canneries on the waterfront has been transformed into a small park. In the early 1990s, the City of Monterey relocated three workers’ shacks from 866 Wave Street to this location and opened them to the public. They are each interpreted as being inhabited by a Japanese, Filipino, and Spanish family, respectively, alluding to the mix of cultures that characterized cosmopolitan Cannery Row and representing workers’ living conditions between 1920 and 1950. In the early twentieth century, shacks like these were plentiful in the neighborhood, but these are the only remaining vestiges of this housing type on Cannery Row. more

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