Topic: Hiram Bingham

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Hiram Bingham (1789–1869), was leader of the first group of Protestant missionaries to introduce Christianity to the Hawaiian islands.

Bingham was descended from Deacon Thomas Bingham who had come to the American colonies in 1650 and settled in Connecticut. He was born October 30, 1789 in Bennington, Vermont. He was one of thirteen children of his father Calvin Bingham and mother Lydia. He attended Middlebury College and the Andover Theological Seminary. He broke off an engagement and found a new bride, Sybil Mosley, in order to become a missionary. On October 23, 1819 he was sent from Boston aboard the brig Thaddeus along with Asa and Lucy Goodale Thurston to lead a mission by the American Board of Commissioners for Foreign Missions.

Bingham and his wife arrived first on the Island of Hawaii in 1820, and then sailed on to Honolulu April 19. In 1823, Queen Kaʻahumanu and six high chiefs requested baptism. Soon after, the government banned prostitution and drunkenness, which resulted in the shipping industry and the foreign community resenting Bingham's impact. Bingham was involved in the creation of the spelling system for the Hawaiian Language and also translated some books of the Bible into Hawaiian.

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