Author Archives: Gaslamp Foundation


William Heath Davis, Sr. came from a prominent New England family. His maternal grandfather, General William Heath, was the last surviving major general from the American Revolution.  This is one reason that the name “Heath” figures prominently in descendant’s names, such as William Heath Davis, Jr.  His paternal grandfather, Robert Davis, participated in the Boston […]

John Coffin Jones, Jr

THE ONLY FATHER Wm. HEATH DAVIS EVER KNEW: JOHN COFFIN JONES, Jr. William Heath Davis’s natural father, William Heath Davis, Sr., died in 1822, the same year in which Davis, Jr. was born. In 1826 Davis’s mother, Hannah (who stopped using the Davis surname as a widow and resumed her maiden name of Holmes), became […]


William Heath Davis’s older brother, Robert, was three years William’s senior.  Robert was educated in private schools in the eastern United States and became the scholar that William was not.  Robert’s life and career were centered in the Sandwich Islands, and he became a driving force in the intellectual, judicial and political community of Honolulu. […]


Wm. HEATH DAVIS’S ENIGMATIC MOTHER, HANNAH HOLMES Hannah Holmes Davis Jones was born in 1800 to former Bostonian Oliver Holmes and Mahikalanihooulumokuikekai (last name unknown), a Polynesian princess with whom he had six children.  Hannah, Holmes’ eldest daughter, married William Heath Davis, Sr. in 1817 and became a widow just five years later.  Hannah’s father […]

Haunted Stories

  Take our newly updated Self-Guided tour: The Davis-Horton House, Haunting Stories! Just in time for Halloween.   Visitor and staff encounters with the paranormal abound both day and night; lights are known to turn on after hours, electronics batteries drain faster within its walls, footsteps creak in empty rooms, and rocking chairs are used […]

Don’t Leave Home Without It!

A Little History of the Purse! After a most successful afternoon of e-shopping for purses and handbags, a history of these necessities, and in some cases, obsessions, seems appropriate. Believe it or not, the real reason for needing a purse early on wasn’t for shopping, but for socializing. As calling on friends in the afternoon […]

A Million Gilded Treasures……

The Woolworth Building (1922) 945 Fifth Avenue Architectural Style: Roman Neo-Classic Architect: Cass Gilbert of New York City     Building Contractors: Allan Macdonald & Felix Kahn    Gone are the days when one could get something of value for five or ten cents, but many of us remember roaming up and down the brightly lighted aisles of […]