California and Native American History

Rush to Riches by J.S. Holliday

This richly illustrated book traces the California history from the early Spanish/Mexican days to the enormous impact on California by the Gold Rush.

"J.S. Holliday - better than anyone, ever - has set forth in one volume the epic story of California's founding era.  Here in rich language and full detail, in all the sweep and grandeur of history as social science and imaginative art, are chronicled the four decades of the nineteenth century that shaped California for all time to come".

Kevin Starr


Native Americans by Jack D. Forbes

Too many white-oriented and prejudiced accounts of the past have fostered erroneous beliefs about California-Nevada Indians which need to be dispelled.  Forbes does this in splendid style and with a convincing marshaling of facts.  For example, many people do not realize that the early explorers found in the natives a high degree of energy and creative ability as well as fine standards of honor and human relations and that, almost invariably, they treated their first white visitors with friendliness and cooperation.  The cruel conquest of the natives, graphically described in this book, brought on by prejudice and selfishness, as Forbes explains, must now be reversed, and the earlier cooperation and cultural heritage revived.  He suggests rational plans and projects for integrating native people who are such a vital and culturally unique part of our society.

Primarily written for teachers and leaders in the field of Indian education.


Ishi, by Theodora Kroeber

For many years, a small band of native Americans evaded the white invaders in the foothills of Mount Shasta to continue to live their traditional life style.  In 19ll, the last living member of this tribe, later named "Ishi", wandered half-starved into a small village, fully expecting to be be murdered by the whites. Instead, he became a ward of the University of California, where slowly, he told the tale of the history, customs and life style of his people.  

The history of Ishi and his people is, inexorably, part of our own history.  We have absorbed their lands into our holdings.  Just so we must we be the responsible custodians of their tragedy, absorbing it into our tradition and morality.

Hard Cover


General Vallejo and the Advent of the Americans 

General Mariano G. Vallejo was one of California's most distinguished citizens in the mid-nineteenth century.  A frontier cosmopolitan and visionary, Vallejo owned vast ranchos in northern California and wielded enormous political power throughout the province.  While serving as military governor during Mexican rule, he established and open immigration policy that encouraged and facilitated the American entrada to northern California.  Dissatisfied with the remoteness of Mexican sovereignty, Vallejo believed that only the United States could unleash California untapped economic potential. 

This richly textured and thoughtful biography explores the contradictions and passions of this most complex of men, shedding light not only on Vallejo, but on the formation of California as a modern state.


The Fine Art of California Indian Basketry 

For thousands of years California Indians have been making baskets, often for the most practical of reasons - for use as cradles, cooking and serving vessels, winnowing trays, and dozens of other necessary functions.  Over the centuries these baskets have evolved artistically as well, becoming what many consider to be among the world's most beautiful, sophisticated, and cherished art objects.

Searching private collections and public museums throughout the country, over sixty stunning examples of California Indian basketry have been assembled, some over a hundred and fifty years old, some made within the last few years.  Commenting upon each basket are native basket weavers, California Indian artists and other media, and scholars.  Together they provide exciting and intimate insights into this world of intense beauty.


Native Ways- California Indian Stories and Memories $7.95

Indian People have lived in California for thousands of years.  Just imagine how many wonderful stories they have to tell, how many interesting memories they have to share!

This lively and affectionate book, full of humor and facts, will give younger readers a glimpse into how Indian people lived in the "old days" and how they are living today.


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