A somewhat divisive political issue arose in 1978 when the Constitution of the State of Hawaii added Hawaiian as a second official state language. The title of the state constitution is The Constitution of the State of Hawaii. Article XV, Section 1 of the Constitution uses The State of Hawaii. Diacritics were not used because the document, drafted in 1949, predates the use of the ʻokina ⟨ʻ⟩ and the kahakō in modern Hawaiian orthography. The exact spelling of the state's name in the Hawaiian language is Hawaiʻi. [b] In the Hawaii Admission Act that granted Hawaiian statehood, the federal government recognized Hawaii as the official state name. Official government publications, department and office titles, and the Seal of Hawaii use the traditional spelling with no symbols for glottal stops or vowel length. In contrast, the National and State Park Services, the University of Hawaiʻi and some private enterprises implement these symbols. No precedent for changes to U. S. state names exists since the adoption of the United States Constitution in 1789. However, the Constitution of Massachusetts formally changed the Province of Massachusetts Bay to the Commonwealth of Massachusetts in 1780, and in 1819, the Territory of Arkansaw was created but was later admitted to statehood as the State of Arkansas.
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