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September through December 2014

Old Sacramento Underground Tour

Historic Old Sacramento Foundation

Sacramento History Museum

Sacramento, CA

Days & times are for September and October. Check back for Winter days and times.

Thursday-Friday 11:00am, 12:30pm, and 2:00pm

Saturday and Sunday 10:30am-2:30pm, Departing every half hour

Hidden beneath the city for nearly 150 years, Old Sacramento’s
underground has long been the capital’s best-kept secret. Today, you
can join thousands of residents and visitors in uncovering the facts
behind the legends that lie below our buildings and sidewalks. Explore
excavated foundations and enclosed pathways while your tour guide
recounts the tales of devastation, perseverance, and determination that
led to California’s only successful street-raising project.

These hour-long guided walking tours check in at the Sacramento
History Museum before heading out into Old Sacramento and
descending below historic buildings. Be prepared to walk in areas with
uneven surfaces and low ceilings and get ready to learn and have fun all
along the way! During the summer months, please plan for very warm
temperatures, as a portion of the tour is conducted outdoors and the
underground spaces are not temperature controlled. Tours run rain or
shine. Adults $15 Youth $10

For more information

September 18, 2014, 6:30pm

“Ice Age Horses”

Coachella Valley Archaeological Society

45480 Portola Ave, Palm Desert, CA

Presented by Eric Scott, Curator of Paleontology, Division of Geological Sciences at San Bernardino County Museum.  

For more information

September 18, 2014, 7:30pm

Canticle of the Sun: Archaeoastronomy and Solar Eucharistic Worship in the Millennial New World

Santa Cruz Archaeological Society

Cabrillo College’s Sesnon House,


On the first winter sunrise of the 21st century, college Professor Ruben Mendoza and a handful of others were witnesses to an amazing sight at the old Spanish Mission San Juan Bautista. Just as the sun rose, it bathed the altar of the mission in a blaze of sunlight. The sun had risen in the saddle between two hills, shone through a window in the mission church and cast an intense column of light directly on the tabernacle on the altar, the center of the Roman Catholic sacrifice of the Mass. They were gathered for what has come to be known as an “illumination,” a brief, breathtaking interval when a sunbeam penetrates the church’s front window to bathe the altar and the sacred objects around it in a blazing patch of light. The mission perched at the edge of the San Andreas fault sees it but once a year.

Dr. Rubén G. Mendoza is an archaeologist, writer, photographer, and founding faculty member of the California State University, Monterey Bay. He has directed major archaeological and historical investigations at missions San Juan Bautista, San Carlos Borromeo, San Miguel Arcángel, Nuestra Señora de la Soledad, and the sixteenth-century Ex-Convento de la Concepción in Puebla, Mexico. His efforts on behalf of the Royal Presidio Chapel Conservation Project were awarded the California Preservation Foundation Preservation Design Award for 2009. He has published over 125 professional articles and books, as well as reviews, commentaries, and scores of published images spanning pre-Columbian, Colonial, and California mission-era art and architecture and solar geometry, American Indian science, technology, and medicine, and modern material cultures.

September 19, 2014, 9:30am-12:00pm

Prehistoric Paint

William S. Hart Park and Museum

Newhall, CA

Fun for families with children of all ages.

Free admission, donations accepted.

For more information

September 20, 2014, 10:00am-12:00pm

Archaeology Walk

Friends of Fiscalini Ranch Preserve

Cambria, CA

Join Barry Price in a walk back in time. You will see the Fiscalini Ranch with new eyes. We will find out who lived on the Ranch during the last 10,000 Years and how they reacted to changes in climate, food resources and population.

For more information

September 20, 2014, 11:00am

Altered Landscapes: Discussion and Documentary Preview

Autry National Center

Los Angeles, CA

From the Central Valley to the Salton Sea, artists and authors discuss the impact of landscape changes on California and the ways communities adapt. The program includes a preview of the film Tulare: The Phantom Lake, which demonstrates the long-term effects of this alteration on our understanding of the land. Following the program, continue the conversation with the panelists over an optional lunch discussion in Crossroads West Cafe.

Panelists include:

Eileen Apperson, author of  Pattern of the Land: The Search for Home in an Altered Landscape; 

Christopher Beaver, documentary film producer/director, author, journalist instructor, and filmaker of Tulare: The Phantom Lake

Kim Stringfellow, artist and educator in the multimedia arts as an Associate Professor in the School of Art, Design, and Art History at San Diego State University.

Space Is Limited / Reservations Recommended

September 20, 2014, 11:00am

The Lives of Pioneer Santee residents Hosmer and Fannie McKoon

Santee Historical Society Edgemoor Barn

Santee, CA

Join San Diego History Seeker, Vince Rossi at the Barn BBQ and General Meeting.  

Mr. Rossi is a freelance writer with a special interest in history. He has written hundreds of articles on many historical subjects. He is the author of four books, three of them on San Diego County History.

September 20, 2014, 8:00pm-9:00pm

Rock Art Mysteries

Maidu Museum and Historic Site

Roseville, CA

Take a walk with through our historic site to observe petroglyphs by
lantern light. Journey back in time and explore ideas about the purpose
of these mysterious symbols carved in stone thousands of years ago.
Museum doors open at 6:30pm. Lantern tour starts at 8pm, following the
FREE “Night Out at the Museum” event. Fees: $6 per person.

For more information

September 23, 2014, 4:00pm-6:00pm

History Discussion: Rancho San Julian

San Pasqual Battlefield Volunteer Association

Joslyn Senior Center

Escondido, CA

Discussion led by Dianne Cowen

September 26-28, 2014, 9:00am-4:00pm

Miwok-Paiute Basketry with Julia Parker

Yosemite Conservancy

Yosemite Valley, Yosemite National Park

Don’t miss this opportunity to learn from Yosemite National Park’s longest-tenured park employee, Julia Parker. Often described as a “national treasure” for ensuring the cultural legacy of the Miwok-Paiute people in Yosemite, Julia, along with her daughter, Lucy Parker, and granddaughter, Ursula Jones, will guide you through traditional basket-weaving techniques as you create your own unique basket. You will be immersed in Yosemite’s fascinating cultural history and hear the stories that have lived on through generations of families. This program begins Friday morning in Yosemite Valley and runs through Sunday afternoon. All materials are provided, and you will take home your own beautiful handmade basket.

For more information

September 27, 2014, 9:00am-3:00pm and September 28, 2014, 9:00am-3:00pm with optional overnight

FALL RETREAT: Partnering with Nature: A Native American Way of Protecting Habitat

Pepperwood Preserve

Santa Rosa, CA

Meet at the Dwight Center
FEES: $180 per participant
($160 for members) Ages 14 and up welcome

All the Native American tribes whose territories surrounded Pepperwood (the Wappo, Pomo, and Miwok) relied upon plants for their survival. They developed a sophisticated system of “tending the wild” to create an abundance of their favorite edible and medicinal plants, while cultivating others for fibers and use in woven baskets. Pepperwood’s Cultural Resources Coordinator and resident anthropologist Benjamin Benson and Autumn Summers, Program Coordinator for the California School of Herbal Studies, will lead this exciting exploration through lecture and field work. Members of Pepperwood’s Native American Council of elders will participate and share their extensive knowledge of plant foods, their exquisite basketry, and traditional tool use. They will bring a wealth of ancient knowledge to this class. 

Savory acorn spread, roasted bay nut “buzz balls” and sweet/sour manzanita berries are a few of the native foods on the menu for preparing and tasting. Employ your hands to make string from dogbane and try your luck at a traditional gambling game while sitting around the campfire Saturday night. 

Participants are invited to stay at the Bechtel House or camp under the stars. A catered dinner Saturday night and continental breakfast on Sunday are included. There will also be an optional evening stroll on Saturday.

Presenters include:

Benjamin Benson is an environmental anthropologist and cultural ecologist who specializes in understanding the systems of environmental management that are utilized by Native cultures throughout the. A leading scholar of California weaving traditions, Ben has a substantial repertoire of publications in ethnobotany, ethnographic art, and environmental science. In addition to being a well-known public speaker and instructor at Santa Rosa Junior College, he serves as Cultural Resources Coordinator for Pepperwood Preserve. Ben also serves as a museum anthropologist and exhibit curator who has designed four small museums, including the Jesse Peter Museum and worked with museums throughout the world including the Smithsonian.

Autumn Summers is a graduate from the California School of Herbal Studies where she currently is a member of the teaching staff and the Program Coordinator. Past President of the Sonoma County Herb Association, Summers completed a Bachelors Degree in Anthropology with an Emphasis in Ethnobotany from Sonoma State University. Her current focus is on teaching botany, edible and medicinal plant use, and seaweed classes.

For more information

September 27, 2014, 9:30am-1:00pm

Artifact Illustration

San Diego Archaeological Center

Escondido, CA

Learn artifact illustration and representation of “wear zones” on stone tools; how to measure and draw artifacts to scale; pen & ink techniques; how to draw and represent historical items, such as wood, bone, leather, glass, and stoneware. Classes are taught by Donna Walker, SDAC’s contract illustrator and volunteer (one-on-one sessions are also available). Ms. Walker assists with the curatorial and programs department at SDAC on a regular basis. In her role as a contracted artist with the Center, she creates artifact illustrations of stone tools found in San Diego County. Her work appears in professional archaeological reports and presentations. Cost is $35 for members and $40 for non-members with a maximum of 12 students.

Please contact Donna Walker for reservations via email: moc.liamgnull@50reklaw.annod

September 27, 2014, 7:30pm

Climate Change and the San Diego Coast

San Diego County Archaeological Society

Ranch House at Los Penasquitos Canyon Preserve

San Diego, CA

In 2011 the Society for California Archaeology established a goal to investigate the impacts of climate change along the entire span of the California coastline. The purpose of this project is to  assist agencies in preparing for the effects of climate change on archaeological resources. This effort will involve coordination with federal, state and local agencies,  tribal governments, and a large group of volunteers. This presentation will explain the project, it’s scope, and the path forward to accomplishing a volunteer survey effort of approximately 10,000 acres across the coastal region of San Diego County.

Sandra is a consulting archaeologist who works in the Western states primarily in California. She sits as the current President of the SDCAS and as the San Diego Regional Coordinator for the Society for California Archaeology’s Climate Change and California Archaeology research project.

For more information

October is California Archaeology Month!

Click here for Archaeology Month events

October 2014-May 2015, 7:00pm – 8:30pm

Symposium: “Challenges to Joshua Tree National Park”

Desert Institute at Joshua Tree National Park

Bell Center, Copper Mountain College

October 17, 2014 “Joshua Tree National Park – State of the Park”

Panelists: David Smith, Superintendent, Andrea Compton, Chief of Resources and

Jennie Albrinck, Chief of Interpretation.

November 21, 2014 “Renewable Energy Development”

Panelists: Chris Clarke, KCET Environmental Writer, James Andre, Director, Granite

Mountains Desert Research Center and April Sall, California Desert Coalition

January 16, 2015 “Water In a Decade of Drought”

Panelists: Dr. William Patzert, California Institute of Technology, Marina West, Big­horn Desert Water District, and Kirby Brill, Mojave Water Agency

February 20, 2015 San Bernardino County Renewable Energy, Development Codes Updates

Panelists: James Ramos, Supervisor, San Bernardino County, David Lamfrom,

National Parks Conservation Assoc. and panelist to be determined.

March 20, 2015 Engaging a New Generation of Park Stewards

Panelists: Mike Chedester, The Living Desert, Caroline Conway, The Wildlands Conservancy, and Cindy Zacks, Educator, Yucca Valley High School

April 17, 2015 Climate Change Response

Panelists: Cameron Barrows, Research Scientsist, UC Riverside, Ian James, Investiga­tive Reporter, The Desert Sun and JTNP Resource Staff

May 15, 2015 Putting It All Together – Achievable Action Items

Panelists: David Smith, Superintendent, JTNP, April Sall, The Wildlands Conservancy

Each event is Free, but pre-registration is required.

Register at

November 1, 2014

San Diego’s 39th Annual Rock Art Symposium

Mingei Museum auditorium, Balboa Park

San Diego, CA

The San Diego Rock Art Association (SDRAA) announces Rock Art 2014, San Diego’s 39th Annual Rock Art Symposium, to be held on Saturday, November 1, 2014. After the San Diego Museum of Man announced it would discontinue its sponsorship of the meeting, SDRAA has taken over as host with a new lower price for registration. The Call for Papers on any aspect of rock art research has been issued and papers may be submitted for publication. Send Abstracts by October 26 to gro.trakcorogeidnasnull@muisopmys. Full information and online registration is at

November 9-16, 2014

Mission, Art, Architecture and Cultural Heritage of Southern Baja California Sur, México

Corredor Historico Carem, A.C.

CAREM is pleased to announce a tour of southern Baja California Sur! The Tour will be led by the noted historian of art and architecture and specialist in mission history, Dr. Pamela J. Huckins. The Tour will include –  Misión Santa Rosa de las Palmas (Todos Santos), Misión San José del Cabo Añuiti, Misión Santiago El Apostol Aiñiní, and Misión Nuestra Señora del Pilar de la Paz Arapí as well as museums and other cultural sites. Join us as we savor delicious regional foods and enjoy the cultural and social history of the region.  Additionally, tour guests will view beautiful architecture in every city, the Regional Museum of Anthropology and History in La Paz, other local museums, cultural centers, art galleries, an historical mining town and gardens, and beautiful beach community of Los Barriles.

For pricing and reservation availability

November 14, 2014, 7:00pm

Glimpses of the Gobi Desert as seen from Ikh Nart Nature Reserve at the northern margin of the Gobi in Eastern Mongolia: Archaeology and Wildlife Conservation

The 29 Palms Historical Society 

Old Schoolhouse Museum
Twentynine Palms, CA

Joan Schneider, Ph.D. Archaeology Team Leader, Earthwatch Institute

For more information

December 7, 2014, 9:00am-4:00pm

Geology and Cultural History of Cottonwood Spring

Desert Institute at Joshua Tree National Park

Cottonwood Visitor Center, Joshua Tree National Park
Cottonwood Exit off of Highway 10

Stretch your legs and enjoy the spectacular scenery of the Cottonwood Mountains with Ted Reeves in this all-day field class.  Reeves will discuss the rocks and minerals of Cottonwood Mountains and tell stories of the people who eked out a living in the Cottonwood Spring area during the late 1800s.  Participants will walk six miles through the rolling hills of the Colorado Desert.

For more information

December 12, 2014, 6:00pm–8:00pm; December 13, 2014, 9:00am–5:00pm

An Introduction to the Cahuilla

January 16, 2015, 6:00pm–8:00pm; January 17, 2015, 8:00am–5:00pm

An Introduction to the Kumeyaay

Anza Borrego Desert State Park

The Cultural Landscape of Anza-Borrego Desert State Park — Past and Present

Dr. Joan Schneider

$85 / $75 for ABF Members

$160 / $140 for both classes

These classes will give students an appreciation of how the Native Peoples of the Colorado Desert and the bordering mountain ranges viewed, and still view, the lands in which they lived and live. This is a holistic look at how people who consider themselves part of the natural world use and care for that world.

For more information

December 12, 2014, 7:00pm

Mining in the Region of Joshua Tree National Park

The 29 Palms Historical Society 

Old Schoolhouse Museum
Twentynine Palms, CA

D.D Trent, Ph.D. Geology, Professor Emeritus, Citrus College

For more information

December 13, 2014, 9:30am-12:00pm

Day at the Ranch: Chumash

William S. Hart Park and Museum

Newhall, CA

Come visit and experience life in an historic Chumash village. Learn how the Chumash lived 500 years ago, including how they gathered and prepared food, how they built their homes, what they did for fun and so much more.

Free admission, donations accepted.

For more information

Saturday, February 28, 2015, 9:00am-4:00pm and Saturday, March 7, 2015, 9:00am-4:00pm

Native American Style Pottery

Anza Borrego Desert State Park

Instructor: Tony Soares

$160 / $150 for ABF members

Tony Soares learned pottery-making techniques from his grandmother, and has refined his skills over the years to yield beautiful ollas. Soares will demonstrate his skills and guide participants in the process of creating their own olla using hand-dug clay from the area. The first day of this two-day workshop is devoted to learning how the clay is made, how paints are made and used to decorate pottery, and building your own pot. After the pots have had a week to dry, participants return to paint their piece before the pots are fired using traditional pit firing (weather permitting).  Participants will see traditional designs used on prehistoric ollas from the Anza-Borrego region and paint designs on their pots with authentic pigments. The class will also offer the opportunity to make a supportive ring from palm fronds to stabilize your pot when on display.

For more information

February 28, 2015, 2:00pm-4:00pm

Archaeology of Asian diasporic settlements in California colloquium

Riverside & Inland Southern California Society of the Archaeological Institute of America


Riverside, CA

Presentations by

Laura Ng, National Park Service: Archaeology of Manzanar

Linda Bentz, SDSU: Chinese abalone harvesting sites in the Channel Islands

Beth Padon, Discovery Works, Inc.: Redlands Chinatown excavations

John Foster, Greenwood Associates: LA Chinatown excavations

Kholood Abdo-Hintzman, Applied Earthworks: San Bernardino and San Louis Obispo Chinatown excavations

For more information

March 6-7, 2015, 9:00am-4:00pm

Balboa Park: 1915 and Beyond

Annual Two Day History Conference

Congress of History of San Diego and Imperial Counties

Recital Hall, Balboa Park

San Diego, CA

In honor of the year-long Centennial Celebration of the first Balboa Park Ex­position, held in 1915, the theme for the two-day conference is: Balboa Park: 1915 & Beyond. Interesting videos and presentations about the history of the park have already been accepted by the Conference Planning Committee, led by President Dianne Cowen.

For more information

March 7, 2015, 11:00am-4:00pm

Arizona Archaeology Expo

Quartermaster Depot State Historic Park

Yuma, AZ

Celebrate Arizona Archaeology and Heritage Month. The Expo provides a special opportunity for visitors to learn more about why it is important to preserve archaeological sites and historic places; what archaeologists, historians, and tribal members do in their jobs; and the prehistory and history of Arizona. Archaeology- and/or history-related, hands-on activities, craft demonstrations, and other fun and educational events will be featured.

In addition, Boy Scout and Girl Scout merit badge requirements can be fulfilled at the Expo. Special displays and booths by archaeological and historical organizations, museums, Native American tribes, state and federal agencies, and others will allow you to participate as an archaeologist might in their research today, or make crafts and tools that teach how prehistoric Native Americans and other early inhabitants survived in the Southwest.

Demonstrations and interactive activities will help make the past come alive! In addition, information on archaeological sites, museums, and historical period parks in and around the local area will be highlighted.

The Expo will give visitors new insights into Arizona’s many prehistoric, historic, and contemporary cultures, and will help instill a sense of stewardship for our state’s fragile and nonrenewable heritage resources.