Download Pacific Eldorado: A History of Greater California by Thomas J. Osborne PDF

By Thomas J. Osborne

Osbornes paintings is the 1st heritage textual content to discover the sweep of Californias previous in dating to its connections in the maritime international of the Pacific Basin.
- provides a provocative and unique interpretation of the full span of California history
- unearths how the parts Pacific Basin connections have formed the Golden States past
- Refutes the generally held idea between historians that California used to be remoted ahead of the onset of the yank interval within the mid-1800s
- Represents the 1st textual content to attract on anthropologist Jon Erlandsons findings that Californias first human population have been most probably prehistoric Asian seafarers who navigated the Pacific Rim sea coast

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Additional info for Pacific Eldorado: A History of Greater California

Example text

Their interactions with the environment were governed by two precepts: do not waste; do not hoard. Hunting, fishing, gathering, and farming were conducted accordingly, ensuring ample food resources for the future. Favored by an environment of plenty, the natives’ stewardship of resources and the land fostered the ecology of aboriginal California. Tribal and Linguistic Groupings The word “tribes,” when applied to California’s Indians, requires a brief explanation. Usually the term suggests Indian groupings tied to specified or recognizable territorial boundaries.

Such were the ways of the Achomawi and Shasta natives in the northeastern corner of California. Additionally, the Achomawi pierced young men’s ears. Completion of these rites gained males (and in some locales females) membership into California’s two major religious cults, the Kuksu and the toloache. The former cult impersonated spirits by using distinctive disguises in their rituals. The latter cult used jimsonweed (Datura stramonium), a narcotic, to induce sacred trances. For young initiated natives – indeed for virtually all North American Indians – shamanism, the belief that priests have powers drawn from the spirit world that among other things cause and cure diseases, was a central component of religion.

If ever there were a Pacific Arcadia, a terrestrial paradise of rustic beauty and relatively simple living, California came as close as anywhere else to realizing that ideal. During the millennia before European contact, California’s Indians built an extraordinary knowledge base about how elevation and climate related to food resources, about edible and medicinal plants, and forestry management. Tribal territories sometimes spanned different elevation levels, each level featuring its own edible vegetation and animal resources as well as climatic characteristics.

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