To effectively reconstruct the early societies of the California coast, detailed data from a variety of disciplines are needed. In designing this study, my goal was a synthetic view of the prehistoric past which integrates data on the paleogeography, settlement patterns, resource exploitation strategies, and interaction among some of the earliest coastal occupants of the New World. In this inquiry, I had to rely to a large extent on the work of previous researchers. Given the rapid changes in archaeology in recent decades, it was not surprising that whole classes of data I considered to be crucial often were lacking. In conducting my own field research, however, I was fortunate to direct a large and relatively well-funded project where a number of early sites were identified, sites that appear to represent different aspects of an early coastal adaptation. I was also fortunate to have access to the talents of a diverse group of scientists who provided invaluable contributions to my synthesis.
KeywordsIsotopic Fractionation Accelerator Mass Spectrometry California Coast Faunal Remains Marine Shell
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