Obsidian, Chert, and Glass, Oh My! Change and Persistence in Chipped Stone Tool Traditions of the Northern Bay Area

Lecture | July 20 | 6-8 p.m. |  Hearst Museum of Anthropology

 Peter Nelson

 Phoebe A. Hearst Museum of Anthropology

As a Coast Miwok person and an archaeologist, I have engaged with stone and tools that were chipped or knapped from stone or other brittle materials in many different capacities. In this talk, I will present an overview of the collection of contemporary pieces that I personally made for the Hearst Museum in 2017 and the inspirations for these pieces. I will also present on the ways in which chipped stone and glass from my recent archaeological work in the Tolay Valley helped bring to light new insights into the lives of Coast Miwok laborers working on Mexican and American ranches in Southern Sonoma County, California, in the 19th Century. My contemporary flint knapping and my archaeological work are both efforts to learn more about and support the maintenance of tribal cultural practices and places.

Peter Nelson, a citizen of the Federated Indians of Graton Rancheria and archaeology PhD from UC Berkeley, chips ceramic, glass and stone in order to help revitalize this practice in his community and learn more about the traditional technologies of his Coast Miwok ancestors.

Free with museum admission.

 pahma-education@berkeley.edu, 510-643-2776