News from 1885: Gustav Wolff travels far from Belfast

Mark Baber

Jul 4, 2000
6 January 1885: With Bruce Ismay and Gustav Wolff among her passengers,
Doric I (Capt. Jennings) leaves London on her first trip in the White
Star/Shaw, Savill & Albion joint service to Wellington, via the Cape of Good
Hope outbound and Cape Horn inbound. (Since entering service in July 1883
Doric has sailed on the same route, but on charter to the New Zealand
Shipping Co.) She will call at Plymouth (leaving on 8 January), Tenerife
(14 January), Hobart (17 February) and Auckland (23 February) before
arriving at Wellington on 28 February. Continued 22 March. (Sources: The
Times (London), 1, 9 and 15 January, 19 and 26 February, and 4 May 1885; The
Star (Christchurch), 24 February 1885; The Evening Post (Wellington), 28
February 1885; Anderson's White Star.)

22 March 1885: Doric I leaves Wellington to begin the return leg of her
first White Star/Shaw, Savill & Albion trip to New Zealand. (See 6 January.)
(Neither Bruce Ismay nor Gustav Wolff, who arrived on Doric last month, is
among those who sail on her; Ismay will spend some months in New Zealand and
Australia playing tennis, see 28 April, and will eventually reach California
in the fall, see 2 October, while Wolff will head for Hawaii, see 31 March.)
... (Sources: The Evening Post (Wellington), 21 and 23 March 1885; The
Times (London), 15 and 29 April and 4 May 1885; de Kerbrech's Ships of the
White Star Line.)

31 March 1885: Gustav Wolff, see 22 March, leaves New Zealand from Auckland
on Pacific Mail's Australia, which is en route from Sydney to Honolulu and
San Francisco. Continued 12 April. (Source: The New Zealand Herald
(Auckland), 31 March and 1 and 27 April 1885.)

12 April 1885: Gustav Wolff, see 31 March, arrives at Honolulu on Pacific
Mail's Australia. Also disembarking, among others, are Lord Elphinstone,
former California Governor and U.S. Senator Newton Booth, noted yachtsman
and former M.P. James Ashbury and C. Schofield of the Lancashire Yeoman
Cavalry. Continued 14 April. (Source: The Daily Bulletin (Honolulu), 13
April 1885.)

14 April 1885: Gustav Wolff, see 12 April, Lord Elphinstone, Mr. Ashbury,
Sen. Booth, Mr. Schofield, the King of Hawaii and Col. Claus Spreckels leave
Honolulu on the steamer Kinau, to visit Spreckelsville, Maui. Continued 19
April. (Source: The Daily Bulletin (Honolulu), 14 April 1885.)

19 April 1885: Gustav Wolff and his traveling companions, see 14 April,
return to Honolulu on the steamer Likelike from Hana, Kaunakakai and
Kahului; where and when they boarded is unknown. (Also unknown is where and
when the Wolff party separated from King Kalakaua,, who also returned to
Honolulu today, on Kinau.) Continued 21 April. (The Pacific Commercial
Advertiser (Honolulu), 20 April 1885.)

21 April 1885: Gustav Wolff and companions again, see 14 April, leave
Honolulu on Kinau. They are headed for Hilo, after a stop at Mahukona
(with a trip by train to C. F. Hart's mill at Niulii). (The Governess of
Hawaii, Princess Poomaikelani, is also on board; whether this is by design
or coincidence is uncertain.) Continued 23 April. (Source: The Daily
Bulletin (Honolulu), 21 and 28 April 1885; The Pacific Commercial Advertiser
(Honolulu), 21 and 22 April 1885.)

23 April 1885: Gustav Wolff and party, see 21 April, arrive at Hilo at 3
a.m. and, after breakfast at Arnold House, leave for Halfway House. They
arrive there at 5 p.m. and "[m]ost of the party" retires early, after a
"splendid dinner." Tomorrow morning at 7 they will leave for Volcano House
in a heavy rainstorm, arriving there at 12:30 p.m., "all having gotten
pretty well soaked through," and spend the night. Continued 25 April.
(Source: The Daily Bulletin (Honolulu), 28 April 1885.)

25 April 1885: Several members of the Gustav Wolff party, see 23 April,
travel from Volcano House to the crater of Kilauea, which is active and will
light up the sky tonight with a "small" lava flow. The continuing kona
storm makes the trip a difficult one and threatens to delay the party's
return to Honolulu. Conditions will improve, however, enough for the party
to leave from Keauhou on the steamer Lehua tomorrow afternoon, and arrive at
Honolulu at 4 a.m. on 28 April. Continued 29 April. (Source: The Daily
Bulletin (Honolulu), 28 April 1885.)

29 April 1885: At Honolulu, Col. G. W. Macfarlane, chamberlain to King
Kalakaua, entertains Gustav Wolff, Lord Elphinstone and Messrs. Ashbury and
Schofield, see 25 April, at a breakfast at his "elegant seaside residence,
Waikiki," followed by "some fine reef fishing." Continued tomorrow.
(Sources: The Pacific Commercial Advertiser (Honolulu), 30 April 1885;
Honolulu Star-Bulletin archive, Honolulu Star-Bulletin Sports.)

30 April 1885: Gustav Wolff, see yesterday, Lord Elphinstone, Sen. Booth,
Messrs. Ashbury and Schofield and a Col. Adams (who was also a participant
in the trip to Kilauea) call on King Kalakaua to pay their respects before
leaving the Kingdom of Hawaii. Continued tomorrow. (Source: The Pacific
Commercial Advertiser (Honolulu), 1 May 1885.)

1 May 1885: Gustav Wolff, Lord Elphinstone, Col. Adams, Sen. Booth and
Messrs. Ashbury and Schofield, see 31 March and following, leave Hawaii for
San Francisco on the Oceanic Steamship Co.'s Alameda. Continued 8 May.
(Source: The Pacific Commercial Advertiser, 2 May 1885.)

8 May 1885: Gustav Wolff and party, see 1 May, arrive at San Francisco on
Alameda. Where any of the group goes now is not known, although when they
arrived in Hawaii it was reported that they planned on going their separate
ways once they reached California. Of particular significance to the
subject of this series, I have found no details of what Wolff does from this
point or when and how he will return home. (Sources: Daily Alta California
(San Francisco), 2 and 8 May 1885; The Daily Bulletin (Honolulu), 13 April
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