On January 16, troops from the U.S.S. Boston marched to the building across from ~Iolani Palace while mostly rich, white men, the plantation-owning sons of missionaries, met to create plans for a Provisional Government in their newly formed Committee of Public Safety. On January 17, Queen Lili`uokalani requested assistance from U.S. Minister to Hawaii John Stevens, but he declined. At 2:30 that afternoon, the Provisional Government, formed by members on the Committee of Public Safety, proclaimed martial law and a new government. On February 1, Stevens raised the US flag over the Hawaiian Islands.