How did Hawaii become the Republic of Hawaii?
After the 17 January 1893 overthrow of the ruling sovereign of the Hawaiian kingdom the oligarchic executive council that ruled had expected a quick and easy annexation by the United States. When that did not happen they needed to project an air of legitimacy to the outside world so they called an election for delegates to a constitutional convention that would create a new constitution for a "Republic" of Hawaiʻi. They faced an overwhelming majority of opposition in Hawaiʻi to their plan so they declared that 19 of the 37 delegates to the convention - a majority - would be appointed by the executive council and only 18 would be elected. Even that election was tainted as in order to vote you had to swear allegiance to the new Republic and foreswear the Hawaiian monarchy which was working to restore the Queen; in effect it was a one party election. In a nation that had over 100,000 people, a little over 4,000 qualified to vote in that election. The elected delegates met in convention, a constitution was drawn up, and on 4 July 1894 the "Republic of Hawaiʻi" was declared.