United States of America—1849 Treaty of Friendship, Commerce and Navigation

US Treaty

On December 20, 1849, the Treaty between the United States of America and the Hawaiian Kingdom was concluded and signed in Washington, D.C. Ratifications by both countries were exchanged in Honolulu on the Island of O‘ahu, on August 24, 1850. Article VIII of the treaty provides:

“…each of the two contracting parties engages that the citizens or subjects of the other residing in their respective States shall enjoy their property and personal security in as full and ample manner as their own citizens or subjects, or the subjects or citizens of the most favored nation, but subject always to the laws and statutes of the two countries, respectively.”

In addition, Article XVI of the said treaty provides that any:

“…citizen or subject of either party infringing the articles of this treaty shall be held responsible for the same, and the harmony and good correspondence between the two governments shall not be interrupted thereby, each party engaging in no way to protect the offender, or sanction such violation.”

Neither the United States nor the Hawaiian Kingdom gave notice to the other of its intention to terminate this treaty in accordance with the terms of Article XVI of the 1849 Treaty.  Therefore, this treaty is still in full force and continues to have legal effect to date. Former United States territories, which acquired their independence from the United States, are successor States to, at the very least, Article VIII of the Hawaiian-American Treaty with regard to the citizenry of the successor State that effectively replaced the citizenry of the predecessor State in the treaty. These successor States are:

  1. Federated States of Micronesia. Independence from American trusteeship on November 3, 1986.
  2. Marshall Islands. Independence from American trusteeship on October 21, 1986.
  3. Palau. Independence from American trusteeship on October 1, 1994.
  4. Philippines.  Independence:  July 4, 1946

One thought on “United States of America—1849 Treaty of Friendship, Commerce and Navigation

  1. Aloha e Keanu, More clarification please, re paragraph 4: Is any offender, individual or group causing offenses against the Treaty accountable for war crimes? Does that include every President of the United State since 1893 even after they left office — were they still responsible to enforce the Executive Agreements of 1893 and since 1898, not enforcing Law of Occupation?

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