The churches of Kalaupapa are the most iconic and important buildings in the settlement. In these buildings, thousands of people who had been shunned by the rest of society prayed with all of their heart and soul. These buildings are infused with this spirit and tell the stories of those who were sent to live their lives out in this place.
There are thousands of graves on the Kalaupapa Peninsula and the individual gravemarkers provide a connection with the past for many Hawaiian families. But for our larger society, the graves at Kalaupapa, marked and unmarked, remind us of the human price paid for the Hansen's disease isolation policies.
Ed Kato was a Kalaupapa patient-resident who passed away in 1998. His love of painting inspired him to make signs for the settlement, which today have become iconic of Kalaupapa. His signs were more than just informative -- they were fun too.