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Life and Death on the Edge: 19th Century Chinese Abalone Fisheries on California’s Channel Islands

Author(s): Linda Bentz ; Todd Braje

Year: 2016

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Summary

Beginning in the mid-nineteenth century, Chinese immigrants built the first commercial abalone fishery along the western edge of North America. These fishers harvested tons of abalone meat and shells from intertidal waters and shipped their products to markets in mainland China and America. Chinese abalone harvesting sites still are preserved on California’s Channel Islands, and over the last decade archaeologists have become increasingly interested in documenting the material record.  Using historical documents, immigration files, and archaeological evidence we illustrate the lifeways, activities, and, at times, deaths of these maritime pioneers.


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Cite this Record

Life and Death on the Edge: 19th Century Chinese Abalone Fisheries on California’s Channel Islands. Linda Bentz, Todd Braje. Presented at Society for Historical Archaeology, Washington, D.C. 2016 ( tDAR id: 434337)


Keywords

Temporal Keywords
1856 - 1915


Spatial Coverage

min long: -129.199; min lat: 24.495 ; max long: -66.973; max lat: 49.359 ;

Record Identifiers

PaperId(s): 325

Arizona State University The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation National Science Foundation National Endowment for the Humanities Society for American Archaeology Archaeological Institute of America