Transport by Ship (1878-1920)
Transporting sugar and people to and from Hakalau Landing was very dangerous.
The business risks associated with transporting sugar by ship were significant.
Loading and Unloading Sugar and People:
In a 1989 letter written to the former Ramona Ross*, the transport of both people and cargo is described:
"Breeches buoy" is a a term I haven't heard before. I've gotten different descriptions of the mechanism that was used to transport people to and from that [Hakalau] landing. Aunty Kate and Aunty Caryrie Patten (when she was pregnant with Eleanor) both have described being in a kind of cage or box. Erling Hedemann has a marvelous picture of a crane-like arrangement hoisting cargo from boat (not sure whether it was large steamer or small boat) to landing, with a Hawaiian riding on top of the netted cargo, as it's suspended in mid-air. But I think the cranes is different from what people rode.
*Ramona, called Mona, was the daughter of William Ross, Hakalau Store manager from 1902-1935(?). Ramona was probably about 18-20 years old in 1935 when her family moved away from Hakalau.
Transport by Rail (1920-1946)
The transition from transport by ship to transport by rail required building two new reinforced concrete warehouses in a different location from the previous warehouse near the Hakalau Landing. Transporting sugar by rail began October 1, 1920.
The Hawaii Consolidated Railway also provided passenger service to Hakalau.
Transport by Truck (1946-1974 when the mill closed)
The Tsunami of 1946 ended the era of transport by railroad. Building roads and purchasing trucks became the priority for the plantation. Within a few days of the tsunami, an article appeared in the Honolulu Star-Bulletin explaining the impact on the transportation and storage systems: