The Kawela district of Molokai is located at the heart of the Island, an area rich in Hawaiian history. Kawela district was an Ahupuaaî- an old Hawaiian description of land ownership extending from the ocean to the mountains.

Archaeological research indicates that Kawela was inhabited as early as the 15th century. Along the coast are numerous Hawaiian fishponds and many archaeological sites inland. High on a cliff of the central ridge of Kawela Gu1ch is a Pu'uhonua where those about to be captured in battle took refuge.

Hawaiian petroglyphs are found throughout Kawela as well as a complete residential complex.
In the 1850's Kawela became part of King Kamehameha V's ranch on Molokai the forerunner of the present day Molokai Ranch. Kawela was used as grazing land for cattle until acquired by former Senator Wadsworth Yee and his limited partnership, Kawela Plantation Development Associates (KPDA).

A PDF version of Land Origins of Kawela: Ownership, Geology, Water is available below. The book was created by Dr. Steven Curtis Research Professor, IACS, CUA and lot owner. Thank you Dr. Curtis for your time in creating this book.