Our Lady of Peace Cathedral

1183 Fort Street
Architect: F.J. Greenway (initial architect)
Style: Neoclassical, Gothic and Renaissance

By the time Catholic missionaries arrived from France in 1828, Honolulu was deeply influenced by the Protestant church. Upon their arrival, King Kamehameha II granted the Catholic missionaries a parcel of land to build a church. Shortly after the erection of the chapel, the Catholic missionaries were persecuted by the Protestants, and eventually expelled from the islands in 1831.

In 1839, King Kamehameha allowed the Catholic missionaries to return to the islands. A large stone church was planned to replace the smaller chapel. The Our Lady of Peace Cathedral was initially designed and built by F. J. Greenway in 1840. The cathedral was built of coral blocks covered with plaster. During construction, the church was lengthened by 30 feet.

Greenway's company went bankrupt before completing the building and construction ceased. The cathedral was finished by a Frenchman named Forest in 1843.

Since completion, the cathedral has gone through many renovations. The first change was the addition of the clock tower in 1852. The next year, a bell was installed. In 1866, a new larger, octagonal tower was built for a heavier bell.

The cathedral saw the largest interior renovation in 1871. Bishop Maigret had a vaulted ceiling installed, as well as balconies on either side for additional seating. The exterior was updated in 1929 with a cement finish to replace the deteriorating plaster. Major updates were made to the roof support in 1940, including steel trusses and concrete buttresses.

The Cathedral of the Our Lady of Peace is the oldest Roman Catholic Cathedral in continuous use in the United States.