The Sakamaki/Hawley Collection has over 5,000 items, mostly consisting of Ryukyu source materials. The Ryukyu materials(over 2,000 copies/936 items) were collected by the late English journalist Frank Hawley (1906-1961) and it is complemented by the personal collection of former University of Hawaii professor Shunzo Sakamaki.
When Frank Hawley died in 1961, Prof. Sakamaki contacted the family and started negotiating the purchase of the collection. Aided by donations from the United Okinawan Association of Hawaii, the University was able to purchase Hawley's Ryukyu collection.
The majority of the Ryukyu/Okinawa materials were destroyed during World War II. Hawley's Ryukyu Collection contains what may be the only surviving materials. The Hawley Collection in the University of Hawaii is the largest known collection of materials that have remained intact. Among 936 items, the majority is in Japanese, and the balance is in Chinese, Okinawan, and various western languages. The subject coverage areas are: History, Geography, Literature, Music (songs), Linguistics, Religion, Politics & Political Systems, Education, Anthropology, Agriculture, Fishery, Culture, China, Korea, and others. Frank Hawley also collected different versions and editions of the same book.