Alexander & Baldwin Sugar Museum

Museum in Puʻunene

This homespun museum occupies the former residence of the sugar mill’s superintendent. There’s the usual display of industrial machinery, including a working model of a cane-crushing plant, but what lingers afterward is the human story. One exhibit traces how the sons of missionaries took control of Maui’s fertile valleys and dug the amazing irrigation system that made large-scale plantations viable.

Compelling B&W photographs illuminate the labor and recreational aspects of plantation life. On display is an early-20th-century labor contract from the Japanese Emigration Company; it committed laborers to work the cane fields 10 hours a day, 26 days a month, for $15.