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Open Access Publications from the University of California


The five volumes of The Journal of California Anthropology published theoretical and substantive materials dealing with ethnology, archaeology, ethnohistory, languages, and arts of the native peoples of Alta and Baja California. The Journal of California and Great Basin Anthropology supercedes The Journal of California Anthropology with an expanded emphasis on Great Basin anthropology.

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Chumash Canoes of Mission Santa Barbara: the Revolt of 1824

The purpose of this paper is to fill in some of the missing information about these two Chumash canoes from Mission Santa Barbara and what we know at present about the men who built and used them. My principal source is the 3,200 pages of notes on Chumash canoes collected for the Smithsonian Institution by anthropologist John Peabody Harrington, who recorded considerable data on Chumash culture from about 1912 until his death in 1961. His principal informant on canoes was Fernando Librado, a Santa Cruz Island Chumash born in 1804 and raised at Mission San Buenaventura. After working as a vaquero and handyman at various places in Santa Barbara County in later years, Fernando Librado died in Santa Barbara in 1915 (Blackburn 1975b: 18). In his last years he imparted to Harrington considerable information on Chumash plank canoes that he had seen in his youth and many stories and events pertaining to the men who built and used these boats. The canoes of Mission Santa Barbara were built by one of his relatives, and Fernando Librado had seen them himself.

'The Basket is in the Roots, That's Where it Begins'

The renown of Pomo basketry in the ethnographic literature has been based almost exclusively on form, fineness and evenness of stitch, symmetry, design, and, to a lesser extent, technique. Pomo basketweavers, however, have continually stressed that an essential part of learning the art of basketry is learning the art of root collection. One of the biggest complaints about new weavers, Indian and non-Indian alike, is as follows: 'They don't want to learn how to dig and prepare those roots. They can't call themselves weavers until they learn how to do that.' This paper maintains that the cultivation of basketry roots is a significant factor in the superior reputation of Pomo baskets. According to a celebrated Dry Creek weaver, 'the basket is in the roots, that's where it begins' (Fig. 1). Consequently, we explore here the processes of basket sedge collection (i.e., cultivation) that the Pomo practice. We also include the characteristics and qualities that weavers use in assessing sedge roots and comment on sedge root exchange and value.

Grasset de Saint Sauveur and the Indians of Baja California

On the cover of the (1976) Summer issue of the Journal of California Anthropology is reproduced an original aquarelle engraving of a "California Native." The image was taken from a publication of 1788 ambitiously titled "Civil Costumes of Living People Throughout the World." The French author of this work, Jacques Grasset de Saint Sauveur, is of more than passing interest because he was one of the few Europeans of the time who gave any specific favorable attention in print to the Indians of Baja California.

For Sale: California at 47 Cents Per Acre

Not very much has been written about the claims case of the Indians of California versus The United States of America which was allowed by the federal government under the Indian Claims Commission Act (H.R. 4497) of August 13, 1946 (60 Stat. 1049; 25 U.S.C. Sec. 70ff). Kroeber and I were the principal expert witnesses for the petitioners, and it fell my lot to give the direct testimony in rebuttal and submit to cross examination on our anthropological evaluation of the ecological theory. Part of the rebuttal was printed in a reply brief of which only a limited number of copies were issued. The full testimony, taken from the stenotype transcript, appears below. I am indebted to Mr. Robert Barker of Wilkinson, Cragun, and Barker, for supplying me with a xerox copy of my testimony which comprises pages 3221-3298 of the official court stenographer's transcript. Since Dr. Kroeber and I together planned the way in which the direct examination would proceed, I have added his name as co-author here.

The 1870 Ghost Dance and the Methodists: An Unexpected Turn of Events in Round Valley

Recent research in the various files and correspondence of the Round Valley Reservation agents for the decade of the 1870's has shed additional light on the Ghost Dance movement during this time. The information uncovered fills in some gaps, presents some surprises, and reveals a much more complicated situation than DuBois was able to describe for the area. An outline of events relating to the 1870 Ghost Dance movement as recorded by the Round Valley Indian agents follows.


A Query Regarding the Possible Hallucinogenic Effects of Ant Ingestion in South-Central California

An increasing number of anthropologists have turned their attention in recent years to the topic of altered states of consciousness, with the result that an extensive list of pharmacologically active substances capable of inducing such states has now been compiled. However, virtually all hallucinogenic materials reported so far in ethnographic contexts have been botanical in origin, even though the wide range of substances and techniques (e.g., sensory deprivation, pain, etc.) used in various areas of the world argues for lengthy and extensive experimentation with most facets of the environment on the part of many generations of native scholars. Reports of apparent hallucinogenic agents of a non-botanical nature should therefore be of more than passing interest, particularly when the ethnographic context involved is California.


Further on J.P. Harrington

Kathryn Klar in her redargution appearing in the last issue of the Journal seems to have gotten her dander up a bit over what she sees as my "bitterness" in some remarks I made about John Peabody Harrington, a man who I barely knew and who she knows only through the aggeration of his field records. My apologies to all readers for not acknowledging Tom Wolfe as a qualified judge of JPH as a genius and book sales promoter—I stand corrected on Wolfe and by Klar. Am I faulted for remembering only Harrington's unusual typewriter? But wait; I also recall a lot of gravy stains on his shirt, though this little intimacy is perhaps of even less interest. I am also cast, unfairly I think, in the role as an apologist for C. Hart Merriam who was admittedly as eccentric as JPH, though CHM carried a lot of weight with North American naturalists, was the founder of the U.S. Biological Survey, and was a member of the National Academy of Sciences. I think that CHM also had many of the faults of JPH, among these a suspicion of professional anthropologists, or perhaps better, anthropological linguists. And surely Merriam was no linguist at all, but rather an abecedarian word list collector.

"The Development of Pinyon Exploitation in Central Eastern California"

We wish to address the contention that the physical remains described by Bettinger are the only possible manifestations of pinyon exploitation. If such is the case, one would expect to find similar manifestations in other areas of the Great Basin. Fortunately, a similar surface survey has been accomplished. Thomas's (1971) study of the Reese River Valley employs an almost identical sampling design based on 500-meter random transect tracts which crosscut biotic communities.

Announcement on Use of Harrington Papers

The Smithsonian Institution National Anthropological Archives has recently been awarded a grant of $25,000 by the National Historical Publications and Records Commission for a one-year project to arrange, describe, and publish on microfilm the California material among the papers of John P. Harrington. Harrington, a linguist and ethnologist with the Bureau of American Ethnology between 1915 and 1945, amassed a trove of ethnological, linguistic, and historical data on the Indians of California. Its publication should facilitate the work of many researchers throughout the country. An incidental benefit will be preservation of the material on archival quality microfilm to assure its availability to generations of future scholars. Dr. Herman J. Viola, Director of the Archives, will have overall charge of the project, and Dr. Ives Goddard, of the Smithsonian's Department of Anthropology, will be its chief linguist. In addition, a number of experts in various disciplines will be called upon for advice. The project will begin in early December.


Cook: The Population of California Indians, 1769-1970

The Population of the California Indians 1769- 1970. Sherburne F. Cook. Berkeley: University of California Press. 1976. 239 pp. $12.75.

Cook: The Conflict Between the California Indian and White Civilization

The Conflict between the California Indian and White Civilization. Sherburne F. Cook. Berkeley: University of California Press. 543 pp. $24.75 (cloth). $6.95 (paper).

Langacker: Review of Non-Distinctive Arguments in Uto-Aztecan

Review of Non-Distinctive Arguments in Uto-Aztecan. Ronald Langacker. Berkeley: University of California Publications in Linguistics, Vol. 82. 1976. xiii + 241 pp. $7.50.

Kroeber: Ishi in Two Worlds

Ishi in Two Worlds: A Biography of the Last Wild Indian in North America. Theodora Kroeber. Deluxe, Illustrated Edition. Berkeley: University of California Press. 259 pp. $14.95 (cloth).

Lawton: Willie Boy: A Desert Manhunt

Willie Boy: A Desert Manhunt. Harry Lawton. Banning: Malki Museum Press. (2nd edition, 1976). 224 pp., 24 plates. $8.95 (cloth). $4.95 (paper).

O'Connell: The Prehistory of Surprise Valley

The Prehistory of Surprise Valley. James F. O'Connell. Ramona, California: Ballena Press Anthropological Papers No. 4, 1975. 57 pp. $4.95.

Wilke: Background to a Prehistory of the Yuha Desert Region

Background to Prehistory of the Yuha Desert Region. Philip J. Wilke. ed. Ramona, California: Ballena Press Anthropological Papers No. 5. 1976. 109 pp. $4.95 (paper).

Hunt: Death Valley: Geology, Ecology, Archaeology

Death Valley: Geology, Ecology, Archaeology. Charles B. Hunt. Berkeley: University of California Press. 1976. 234 pp. Illustrations. $14.95 (cloth). $6.95 (paper).

King: Fifty Years of Archaeology in the California Desert

Fifty Years of Archaeology in the California Desert: An Archaeological Overview of Joshua Tree National Monument. Thomas F. King. The Western Archaeological Center, National Park Service, Tuscon, Arizona. 1975.

Horr: American Indian Ethnohistory: California and Great-Basin Plateau Indians

American Indian Ethnohistory: California and Great Basin-Plateau Indians. David Agee Horr, compiler and editor. New York and London: Garland Publishing Company. 1974. Vols. I-VI (Vol. 1 in 3 parts). $28.00 per volume ($224 for the set).

Bean and Blackburn: Native Californians: A Theoretical Retrospective

Native Californians: A Theoretical Retrospective. Lowell J. Bean and Thomas C. Blackburn, eds. Ramona, California: Ballena Press. 1976. 452 pp. $6.95 (paper).

Walsh: John Peabody Harrington: The Man and His California Indian Field Notes

John Peabody Harrington: The Man and his California Indian Fieldnotes. Jane Mac-Laren Walsh. Ramona, California: Ballena Press Anthropological Papers No. 6. 1976. 58 pp. $4.95 (paper).

Murdock and O'Leary: Ethnographic Bibliography of North America

Ethnographic Bibliography of North America. George Peter Murdock and Timothy J. O'Leary. 4th ed. New Haven: Human Relations Area Files Press, 1975. 5 vols. Until Jan. 1, 1977 $26.00 per volume; $125.00 for the set of five volumes. After that date $35.00 per volume and $ 175.00 for the set.

Kroeber: Yurok Myths

Yurok Myths. A. L. Kroeber. Foreword by Theodora Kroeber. Kroeber and the Yurok, 1900-1908 by Timothy H. H. Thoresen. Folkloristic Commentary by, Alan Dundes. Editor's Preface by Grace Buzljko. The Geographical Setting by A. L. Kroeber. Berkeley and Los Angeles: University of California Press, 1976. xl + 488 pp., 7 maps, 5 black and white photographs, 3 bibliographies, appendix (recordings of Yurok myths on phonograph cylinders), index (personages, characteristic stories and themes). $18.50 (cloth).

Nava and Barger: California: Five Centuries of Cultural Contrasts

California: Five Centuries of Cultural Contrasts. Julian Nava and Bob Barger. Beverly Hills: Glencoe Press, 1976. 428 pp., many illustrations and maps, index. No price listed.

Crosby: The Cave Paintings of Baja California

The Cave Paintings of Baja California: The Great Murals of an Unknown People. Harry Crosby. San Diego: A Copley Book, 1975. 174 pp. $18.50 (cloth).

Heizer: Some Last Century Accounts of the Indians of Southern California

Some Last Century Accounts of the Indians of Southern California. Robert F. Heizer (editor). Ramona. California: Ballena Press, Publications in Archaeology, Ethnology, and History No. 6. 1976. 92 pp. $4.95 (paper).

True, Meighan, and Crew: Archaeological Investigations at Molpa, San Diego County, California

Archaeological Investigations at Molpa, San Diego Country, California. D. L. True, C.W. Meighan, and Harvey Crew, with an appendix by Smiley Karst. Berkeley and Los Angeles: University of California Press. University of California Publications in Anthropology Vol. 11, 1974. vi + 163 pp., maps, tables, appendices, bibliography, 13 plates, 9 figures.

Heizer: A Collection of Ethnographical Articles on the California Indians

A Collection of Ethnographical Articles on the California Indians. Robert F. Heizer, ed. Ramona, California: Ballena Press Publications in Archaeology, Ethnology, and History 7. 1976. 103 pp. $4.95 (paper).