cabrillo college

Episode 8: Digging California Archaeology with Dustin McKenzie

In this episode of the Bay to Bay Podcast we talk to Dustin McKenzie of the Cabrillo College anthropology department.  Dustin is a local archaeology expert on the history of the San Francisco and Monterey Bay areas.  We enjoyed an hour long, wide-ranging chat in which Dustin shared a wealth of information about the people who have historically populated the region.  In particular, we discussed:

  • How long have humans lived in the region, and where they came from
  • How many people lived here millennia ago, who did they trade with, where they lived
  • What kind of technology did they have, and what language(s) they spoke
  • Ancient forms of California government
  • What life was like for women in ancient California
  • The arrival of Spanish explorers in California
  • Archaeological study European history in California
  • The Spanish Missions vis a vis the experiences of the native people
  • Where people can go today to see ancient artifacts from California’s history
  • Archaeology meet-ups in the area where people can go geek out on the subject and meet fellow enthusiasts
  • Where and how to get a job in archaeology

One thing that really comes through in this episode is the guest’s love for this field of study! It’s infectious, and you’re sure to gain a better appreciation for this field of study, how much work is yet to be done, and the surprising number of opportunities for people interested in pursuing this as a career.  Towards the end of our discussion, we talked at some length about the Cabrillo College archaeology summer field program, where participants spend four weeks over the summer doing archaeology work around the region.

Links

Cabrillo College archaeology field school blog: http://ccarchfieldschool.blogspot.com/

Society for California Archaeology: https://scahome.org/

Santa Cruz Archeological Society: http://www.santacruzarchsociety.org/