Join SCAS on May 19 at 7:30 pm in the the Meeting Room at the Scotts Valley Library (Tsim D. Schneider, “Shipwrecks, Fandangos, and Vaqueros: The Archaeology of a Post-Mission Landscape.”
Archaeological interest in European colonialism in North America usually focuses on missions, forts, and other colonial settings as places of Native American culture change or loss. This is especially true in California where considerable academic and public interest in the twenty-one Spanish missions outpaces detailed study of the places where native people continued to dwell during the missions (AD 1769-1830s) and afterward. This talk presents an archaeological and historical overview of California’s indigenous hinterlands as critical settings of native cultural resiliency. Looking first at locations around San Francisco Bay where native people found safe harbor from the missions, the talk will then explore the very latest discoveries from an ongoing project investigating a post-mission trading post at Tomales Bay. Here, eyewitness accounts suggest, indigenous Coast Miwok and others continued traditional hunting and gathering practices, they held dances and mourning rituals, and they participated as laborers in early California’s hide and tallow trade. The implications of this research are explored relative to mission studies within and outside of California, including growing efforts to document the Native American landscapes of colonial North America.
Dr. Schneider is an assistant professor of anthropology at the University of California, Santa Cruz. His archaeological research in the San Francisco Bay region investigates the interactions between Native Americans and colonial institutions. His current field and archival research, funded by grants from the National Science Foundation and the American Philosophical Society, addresses indigenous refuge and resiliency in mission-era and post-mission Marin County. Dr. Schneider is co-editor of Indigenous Landscapes and Spanish Missions: New Perspectives from Archaeology and Ethnohistory (University of Arizona Press, 2014) and his research has been published in American Antiquity, Journal of Anthropological Archaeology, American Indian Quarterly, Journal of California and Great Basin Anthropology, and Pacific Coast Archaeological Society Quarterly.