The Bishop Estate was created in 1884 at the request of Princess Bernice Pauahi Bishop, the great-granddaughter of King Kamehameha the Great - the founder of the Kingdom of Hawaii. The Princess refused the throne from Kamehameha V on his deathbed and thus set the stage for the first election in the Kingdom of Hawaii which resulted in King Lunalilo becoming the 6th monarch of the kingdom.
From birth, the Princess was supposed to have married the future King Kamehameha V (Lot) but instead married prominent American financier Charles Reed Bishop. After her death, her land holdings (approximately 9% of the land in the Hawaiian Islands) were dedicated solelyto benefit the Kamehameha Schools. Later, her widower built the Bishop Museum as a tribute to his late wife. While there is a connection between the two - the Bishop Museum runs on a trust from Charles Reed Bishop while the Bishop Estate funds Kamehameha Schools.