Isenburg / Rice

In 1861, Hannah Maria Rice married sugar planter Paul Isenberg, who got his start in the sugar business at Lihue Plantation while Mr. Rice was manager. Hannah Maria’s son, Paul, had envisioned a monument as a memorial to his mother. But, as plans progressed, Paul’s original idea gave way to a monument that would memorialize all the beloved dead of the Rice and Isenberg families.

Eventually Paul was joined by his aunt, Anna Rice Cooke, and his uncle and aunt, the Rev. and Mrs. Hans Isenberg, in commissioning Norwegian-Danish sculptor Stephan Sinding to create the memorial in Paris in 1910.

The Monument is a memorial to the kamaaina Rice and Isenberg families. It was christened by Sinding as “The Blessed Souls Wandering Toward Light." It is a shaft of white marble weighing ten tons.

Carved upon it are shrouded figures with their faces turned toward heaven. Also carved upon it is the figure of a woman representing Hannah Maria Rice Isenberg (1842-1867). She has turned to look earthward at bronze figures on the monument steps that depict her grieving children – Mary Dorothea Rice Isenberg and Paul Rice Isenberg.

When Sinding completed his work, it was exhibited in Paris and Bremen before being shipped around Cape Horn to Kauai, where it was set up in the Lihue Cemetery by W. Schrieber, the head mason of Lihue Plantation.

On September 1, 1911, the Rice Monument was unveiled by Anna Rice Cooke in the presence of relatives and friends.