Maids Plan an Adamless Eden

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Maids Plan an Adamless Eden


In 1916, a Chicago group called the Bachelor Girls’ Social Culture Club, offered to purchase Palmyra from then owner Henry Cooper, to use as a colony for women only.

The article details the intentions and details of the group, and is a fascinating look at what Palmyra might have become.



Hawaiian Advertiser




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Miss Marie Holmes, representative of Chicago Girls’ Club, who has opened negotiations with Honolulu Owner of Palmyra to Purchase it for establishment of Adamless Eden.

Judge Henry E. Cooper may sell Palmyra, his little island possession, to a Chicago organization known as the Bachelor Girls’ Social Culture Club. The judge tacitly admitted yesterday that negotiations were under way, but further than this he was mum as a clam.

If the bachelor girls of the Windy City buy Palmyra it is their intention to convert the little island into an Adamless Eden. Authority for this statement is Miss Marie Holmes, representing the Chicago club, who was in Honolulu recently negotiating with Judge Cooper for his isle. Palmyra is located south of Hawaii and is sufficiently far away from the lanes of ocean travel to assure the colony complete isolation and freedom. Not a man is to be allowed on the island.

"Men are totally unnecessary concomitant to feminine happiness.

Following the fashions is a silly pastime.

Conforming to the prevailing modes of dress is an indication of emptyheadedness.

Women should dress as they please, each woman designing her own fashions."

These are a few of the doctrines set forth to Judge Cooper by Miss Holmes in connection with her proposal on behalf of the Chicago club to acquire Palmyra. What the judge said in reply “deponent sayeth not.”

All Wearied of Men

The association of women which sent Miss Holmes to Honolulu has a membership of about one hundred, and in this connection when Miss Holmes returned to the Coast she said:

“All of the members are wearied of modern conditions of life in a big city. All of them are agreed that men are not necessary to happiness. Some of them are widows and some have never been married, but all of them have met with disappointments in a man regulated world.

“Most of the members are self-supporting, and from what I learned of Palmyra Island it will be easy for the colony to produce everything there that is necessary for existence.

“Judge Cooper is the exclusive owner of the island, which is rich in agricultural possibilities. No one lives there, and the only visitor is Judge Cooper, who generally makes a vacation voyage to the island every year.

“In addition to raising everything we need to eat we will make our own clothes out of natural materials and it will not be necessary for the colony to have any communication with the rest of the world.”

Formerly a Dancer

Before visiting Honolulu, Miss Holmes went to New Zealand and Australia. There she met many war widows who, she says, want to become members of the colony. In New Zealand she heard the Maori word “manapouri,” which means “weeping heart,” and upon her return to Chicago will suggest that the name be adopted for the colony.

Miss Holmes, who was formerly a dancer, did not say what happened in her life to make her eager to renounce the ways of the world and become a dweller in the proposed Adamless Eden. She intimated that “manapouri” graphically expressed the condition of many of the members of the Chicago club and that disappointment in affairs of the heart had much to do with the desire to establish a manless colony far from the haunts of all gay deceivers. Upon her return to Chicago she will recommend that Palmyra be purchased.


“Maids Plan an Adamless Eden,” Palmyra Archive, accessed July 14, 2020,