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The missionaries became powerful in influencing the royal family and set up trade ties with the US. Eventually, most of the islands' indigenous religions faded. Sugar became the primary industry in Hawaii as that was seen as the most profitable, with more Americans migrating to the islands and setting up plantations. This also changed Hawaii's demographic makeup by bringing over 200,000 laborers from East Asia, including China, Japan, and the Philippines. Many of these laborers stayed after their contract periods, although most did go home.
Overtime, Hawaiians became more ethnically diverse, and interracial marriages became common. In 1872, the first ruling Hawaiian dynasty, the Kamehameha dynasty, died out. With the dynasty's death, monarchs became elected, with the first elected monarch being William C.
Lunatic. In 1887, the so-called Bayonet Constitution, because it was threatened by force on the king, was passed, which effectively made the Hawaiian kingdom a constitutional monarchy similar to the United Kingdom. This gave the legislature and cabinet government power over the king.
In 1891, Liliʻuokalani became the queen in Hawaii, and she soon threatened to change the constitution to put more power back in the monarch's hands (Figure 2). The queen came in a time of economic troubles for Hawaii, as William McKinley, chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, had supported legislation that created what became known as the McKinley tariffs that helped to remove advantages Hawaiian exporters enjoyed previously in the US. The tariffs became a catalyst to the overthrow of the Hawaiian monarchy.