Graduation Date

Fall 2018

Document Type



Master of Arts degree with a major in Applied Anthropology

Committee Chair Name

Justine Shaw

Committee Chair Affiliation

HSU Faculty or Staff

Second Committee Member Name

Marissa Ramsier

Second Committee Member Affiliation

HSU Faculty or Staff

Third Committee Member Name

Marisol Cortes-Rincon

Third Committee Member Affiliation

HSU Faculty or Staff

Subject Categories



United States history is full of adventure and pioneering but building the regional histories of the nation allows one to dig deeper into what it took to make this country develop socially and economically. In the mid 1800’s California experienced a boom like never before. In 1848, mill workers found gold at Sutter’s Mill in Coloma, California, which led to a huge influx of people and population spike that changed California forever. Once the Gold Rush subsided, agriculture replaced gold in California as a wealth generator. Early settlers discovered that the mild climate of the region allows a wide variety of crops, orchards, and livestock to thrive. Today, California grows a majority of the nation’s fresh fruits, vegetables, and nuts. Despite the agricultural industry’s importance after the Gold Rush to the state’s growth and development little work has been done to understand the daily lives of early settlers whose choices, hard work, and ingenuity led to California’s success. Archaeological remains of these early agricultural settlements are few and far between. Unfortunately, development and expansion throughout California has destroyed many sites. Through the lens of historical archaeological investigation and archival research, one of these rare properties, the old Joerger Ranch, in the Martis Valley of Northern California, has been evaluated for the National Register of Historic Places for its archaeological data’s potential and historical significance. This investigation adds to the knowledge and understanding of what can be learned from archaeological investigations at these types of properties and helps reveal more about the lives of the people who helped shape the state into what it is today.

Citation Style



Thesis/Project Location