Racially separated workers' communities called "camps" were an age-old custom in Hawaii's plantation society. Established initially as an anti-union device to "divide and rule," the ethnically segregated Chinese, Portuguese, German, Japanese, and Filipinos camps continued after the plantations unionized. By then, the workers, deeply rooted in their distinct cultures, wanted to settle around their temples, churches, and community centers—with each successive wave of immigrants occupying the bottom rung of the island's social ladder. Intermarriage eventually created a "chop suey" of cultures and ethnicity in all the camps.
The plantation closed in 1971. As the workers moved away in search of jobs, the sugar company demolished or sold the houses. The buildings cost $100, and if you left the lot cleared and clean, you got a $50 refund. Many Taylor Campers built their tree-houses from materials recycled from the Kilauea camps.