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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Volume 33, Issue 2, 2013



A Typology Of Channel Islands Barbed Points

The Channel Islands Barbed point type occurs on the three larger northern Channel Islands off the coast of southern California. The points are small, unusually thin, and carefully knapped, and occur in archaeological assemblages dating between 12,100 and 7,800 cal B.P. Based on points of this type in museum collections compiled during the late nineteenth and early twentieth century and a lesser number from recent investigations, we present a typology of Channel Islands Barbed points consisting of seven subtypes, with the objective of facilitating investigation into their spatio­temporal patterning. The delicate character of the points implies that the spears or darts on which they were hafted were used to acquire fauna in aquatic environments or were thrust rather than thrown, given that they would be highly vulnerable to breakage if thrown on land. Although having a very limited geographic distribution, the Channel Islands Barbed point type is comparable in quality of knapping to other Paleoindian and early Archaic types found elsewhere in North America.

Red Abalones, Sea Urchins, and Human Subsistence at Middle Holocene Cuyler Harbor, San Miguel Island, California

Excavations at CA­SMI­161 provide insight into Middle Holocene human subsistence strategies and exploitation of kelp forest and rocky intertidal habitats on San Miguel Island. Faunal data from two red abalone (Haliotis rufescens) middens dated to ca. 4,400 cal B.P. and an earlier deposit dominated by sea urchin (Strongylocentrotus spp.) dated to 5,800 cal B.P. demonstrate variability in the use and availability of different marine shell sh through time. Some of these data come from one of the youngest red abalone middens reported on the Northern Channel Islands and suggest that by 4,400 cal B.P. red abalone was still highly abundant (approximately 48 –73% by weight) in some San Miguel Island middens, but declined to 24% by 4,000 cal B.P. at CA­SMI­603 and to just 7% by 3,600 cal B.P. at CA­SMI­261. When compared to Late Holocene sites from Cuyler Harbor, the CA­SMI­161 data document a broader decline in red abalone, with n sh and California mussels (Mytilus californianus) dominating subsistence resources after about 3,000 cal B.P.These trends may relate to growing Late Holocene human population densities and the higher biomass provided by n shes.


G. Engerrand’s “New Petroglyphs in Baja California”

This edition of Lost and Found presents—for the first time in English—a compilation of several significant, pioneering contributions on the rock art of Baja California. I am greatly indebted to Don Laylander for resurrecting Engerrand’s interesting observations, for carefully trans­ lating and editing them, and for bringing them to my attention and allowing me to publish them here.


A Note from the Guest Editors

In 2011, we organized a symposium at the Society for American Archaeology’s 76th Annual Meeting in Sacramento, California. Entitled “Chasing Rainbows from the Great Basin to the Paci c Shore: Honoring the Accomplishments, Innovations and Contributions of C. William Clewlow, Jr.,” the symposium included 13 papers. these ranged from substantive summaries of Clewlow’s own contributions to presentations of new research that were inspired or in uenced by his work. Representative papers by six of the participants are included here. While ve of these are essentially the same papers that were presented at the conference, the paper by David Hurst thomas has been substantially reworked for this issue. In addition to the authors whose contributions are included here, Clarus Backes, Colin Busby, Shelly Davis-King, Susan Hector, James F. o’Connell, and David S. Whitley participated in the symposium. Russell Kaldenberg presented an overview of Billy’s life and career; Carolyn Shepherd and Billy Clewlow himself provided ending and summary comments.

Taming Time in the Great Basin

Following the pioneering work of Robert Heizer and Martin Baumhoff, C. William (Billy) Clewlow published a series of papers in 1967 and 1968 describing and chronologically ordering numerous morphological forms of Great Basin projectile points. His work was critical to establishing the temporal duration of each of these forms and creating what we call today temporal types. The projectile point chronology that Clewlow was instrumental in developing has been reaf rmed at countless archaeological sites throughout the Great Basin and has been pivotal in cross­dating otherwise undatable open sites.

The Inland Chumash Research Project (1975 –1980): Wringing Out the Old

The Inland Chumash Research Project (ICRP,) conducted by UCLA in the 1970s, was spearheaded by C. William Clewlow, Jr. Although the focus and nature of Chumash studies have changed dramatically in the intervening years, many of the questions concerning inland Chumash populations posed in the 1970s continue to interest scholars today. Selected examples of current research into the inland Chumash are brie y examined and compared to the ndings of the ICRP. This comparison shows that ICRP data still have a signi cant contribution to make to our understanding of Chumash economic and settlement systems.

The Grass Valley Archaeological Project: Looking Back and Looking Forward

C. William Clewlow, Jr. and his Berkeley colleagues began their investigation of the Grass Valley region of central Nevada in 1969. Over the course of several seasons, powered by summer eld schools, their focus changed from prehistoric settlement patterns to the documentation and interpretation of nineteenth century Shoshone habitation sites. At the time, there were few models for the study of historic­period Native American sites. As Clewlow himself characterized it in 1978, the project became a series of “particularistic” studies that “will someday make a whole.” More than 30 years later, our studies and our understanding continue to evolve, as we begin to revisit the archived collections and eld notes from the Grass Valley Archaeological Project. A recently completed re­examination and analysis of the historic artifact assemblage from Pottery Hill (26LA1107), one of the Shoshone habitation sites, illustrates how new approaches, along with newly available comparative data, can be used to interpret the Grass Valley material.

Washo Archaeology: Clued In by Clewlow

This paper concerns C. William (Billy) Clewlow’s contribution to archaeological ideas and their development relative to the prehistory of the Sierra Nevada around Lake Tahoe and the western Great Basin between the mid­1960s and early 1970s. The work of Clewlow and his fellow U.C. Berkeley graduate student James F. O’Connell was crucial to the solution of typological problems I faced in trying to organize a large collection of projectile points from the east slope of the Sierra Nevada. Clewlow’s work with point typology was important far beyond the east slope, however; it contributed to the development of Great Basin/Sierran point keys still in use today. Clewlow was the rst Great Basin archaeologist to recognize in print the utility of named point types with known temporal ranges for the study of disturbed deposits and surface archaeology.

The Monkey’s Skull

A primate skull found during archaeological survey in the White Mountains of eastern California in 1986 provides a new perspective on the early years of the U.S. space program. The individual, a pig­tailed macaque (Macaca nemestrina), probably a young male, was part of a research program to understand the likely physiological effects of space ight on primates. Among several possible scenarios, the most likely is that this animal managed to escape from laboratory captivity, only to be killed by a coyote or mountain lion. I presented this paper in the 2011 SAA session honoring the accomplishments of my close friend and colleague C. William Clewlow, Jr. While Billy and the primate described here were both pioneers, they were more importantly rebels, unwilling to accept limits others wanted to impose upon them. This turned out well for Billy; for the macaque not so much.


A Message from the Editor

This issue of the Journal of California and Great Basin Anthropology marks a transition in editorship from todd Braje to myself. the Journal thrived under todd’s direction, and I thank him for his efforts and look forward to continuing this ne tradition of scholarship and publication. Much of what appears in this issue was initiated by todd, including a special series of papers honoring the contributions of Billy Clewlow. these papers not only do a great job of acknowledging Clewlow’s work, but also provide valuable narratives that help us better appreciate the history of our discipline.