“Mā‘alaea—The Untold Story of Maui’s Historic Crossroads”


By Lucienne de Naie
With Rita Goldman

Published by Mā‘alaea Village Association with funding from the County of Maui Office of Economic Development, Maui Ocean Center, and Maui Chapter of the Sierra Club

Mā‘alaea—The Untold Story of Maui’s Historic Crossroads documents the seminal role Mā‘alaea Village has played in shaping the history of Maui from ancient to modern times.  This engaging 208-page softcover pictorial book features numerous contemporary images and historically significant archival materials.

Highlights include:

  • Mā‘alaea as a centuries-old Hawaiian fishing village—once home to a prominent heiau and one of the island’s largest collections of petroglyphs—whose canoe landing served as a portal to Maui for Hawaiian kings and warriors.
  • Its days as a busy mid-19th-century harbor, with a hotel for disembarking steamship passengers and facilities (including a railroad) serving Waikapū Sugar Company’s plantation and mill.
  • Its early-20th-century Japanese fishing village and Shinto shrine.
  • Mā‘alaea as the site of Maui’s first commercial airport, and a WWII training area.

Later chapters bring the story of Mā’alaea into modern times, including the creation of the Hawaiian Humpback National Marine Sanctuary, Kealia Pond National Wildlife Refuge, Maui Ocean Center, and Pacific Whale Foundation.  The book also includes the contributions of Mā‘alaea Village Association and the former Mā‘alaea Community Association in advocating for the community.

The book offers something for every reader.  For residents and those with knowledge of Maui, it’s a chance to dive deeper into the untold history of Ma’alaea.  Students and scholars will find many archived news stories, along with a glossary and index.  For Maui visitors, the book will inspire you to learn more about this unique community, and its many beautiful photos and illustrations makes it an enjoyable souvenir.

Retail price:  $24.95, with book proceeds dedicated to Mā‘alaea restoration projects, including the Pohakea watershed and Ma`alaea Bay.

Copies of the book are being donated to Maui County schools and libraries.

Click here to read MVA’s June 15, 2023 Press Release

Click here to read the review published by Maui Now on June 28, 2023

Click here to view KHON “Living808” segment on June 22, 2023

Click here to watch Book Launch event at Maui Ocean Center on June 29, 2023

Visit These Businesses to purchase your copy!

  • Maui Ocean Treasures at the Maui Ocean Center – available in-store or for mail-order purchases.  Click here for order information.  Or, call 808-270-7061.
  • Maalaea General Store
  • Kealia Pond NWR Visitors Center (Friends of Kealia)
  • A&B Sugar Museum
  • Maui Friends of Library, at the Queen Ka’ahumanu Center
  • Bailey House Museum (Maui Historical Society)
  • Native Books (Honolulu)
  • Maui Island Treasures (at the Harbor Shops in Ma’alaea)
  • Kumu Farms (Maui Tropical Plantation)
  • Collections (Makawao)