“Auntie Rosey,” as they call her in the small town of Makawao, Maui, Hawaii, is the only paniolo to be inducted into the Cowgirl Hall of Fame. The infamous “Auntie Rosey” gets her nickname for a reason.
Inducted in 2006, Rose Cambra Freitas is notably known for sharing the western lifestyle with people of all ages—especially the younger paniolos. Freitas is the co-founder of the Maui All Girls and Junior Boys and Girls Rodeo Association. She has touched the lives of many children for her gracious efforts in providing them with horses and an arena to ride in. Freitas and her husband have been sharing the beloved lifestyle and the importance of horsemanship with island members for over forty years. To read more about this paniolo, read her portfolio the National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame website!
When most people think of the Hawaiian Islands, they think of palm trees, beaches, and vacation. What most people don’t know is that the Hawaiian paniolos were coined before the cowboys of the Wild West. The islands had cowboys before Texas was even a state.
Even Vogue is all over the first female paniolos. According to Vogue, the first ruler of the Hawaiian Kingdom, King Kamehameha, brought in four cows gifted from British captain, George Vancouver. Kamehameha ran them in an enclosed pen in north of Kona. This pen of cattle, consisting of two ewes and a ram, multiplied and began to destroy the Hawaiian farmlands. The cattle needed to be contained and the Native Hawaiians didn’t know how to round them up. It wasn’t until the third ruler of the Kingdom of Hawaii, invited the Mexican-Spanish vaqueros to teach them how to herd cattle in 1832. To read more about the female paniolos visit Vogue’s article, here!
The Hawaii Star Bulletin points out that Freitas herself is a generational member of the Portuguese immigrant vaqueros. Read more about her recognition from the Islands, here! Her Hawaiian cowgirl spirit is rooted in rich history.