CASSP Annual Report for 2016 (download the 2016 annual report with photos as a two-page PDF).
The California Archaeological Site Stewardship Program (CASSP) is a network of concerned people who are committed to protecting California’s rich cultural heritage. Under CASSP, trained volunteers from the public regularly visit assigned archaeological and historical sites located on public lands and record their conditions. The volunteers are supervised by the local archaeologists who are working for the agencies responsible for those lands. CASSP is supported by many members of the Society for California Archaeology (SCA).
2. Highlights from 2016
The most important parts of CASSP are the achievements of the volunteer site stewards who are working all across the State. Their enthusiasm, dedication, and skills are making a real difference. From October 2015 through September 2016, over 100 volunteer site stewards reported that they spent more than 4,100 hours visiting their sites and attending CASSP workshops. When other volunteer activities for last year are included, an additional 2,288 volunteer hours, the total value of donated time is more than $100,000. Thanks to all!
At the SCA 2016 Annual Meeting, over 40 people attended the CASSP Committee meeting. Discussions ranged from praise for the CASSP Facebook page (thank you Linn Gassaway), to the effectiveness of different types of public outreach, and discussions about advertising other volunteer opportunities. Several site stewards participated at the CASSP poster session at the annual meeting; the poster by Rich Abele and Lygeia Gerard described the activities of the Friends of Public Lands Cabins; Beth Armstrong, Mary Gerbic, Pat Monaco, Deb Hendricks, and Nancy O’Shea presented their research and results on the Coast Dairies for the BLM Marina; Nancy August, Jane O’Donnell, Chelsea Herman, and Peter Van der Naillen related their experiences as site stewards at Point Reyes National Seashore; Sandy and Fran Rogers showed their site stewards at work on a Sequoia National Forest collection at Maturango Museum; Donna Gillette and her intern, Tany McCaw illustrated how site stewards go beyond the field at the Dana Adobe; and Mary and Martin Jespersen illustrated recent finds at their sites in the Mojave Desert. Also we thank agency archaeologists Erik Zaborsky, George Kline, Paul Engle, and Ashley Blythe for their involvement with these volunteers. Congratulations to everyone who participated.
In 2016, CASSP volunteers participated in the Preservation 50 for the National Historic Preservation Act in Death Valley National Park, and in the Archaeological Institute of America (AIA) Archaeology Day in Riverside in October 2016. Thanks to site stewards Mary and Martin Jespersen, Ila Ross, George Ross, Judy Palmer, and to AIA organizer Craig Lesh and to NPS archaeologist Wanda Raschkow.
Volunteer training workshops.
Five volunteer training workshops and one advanced training workshop were held in 2016, attracting 117 participants. Three BLM Field Offices (Eagle Lake, Palm Springs, and Bakersfield) and three USFS locations (Inyo, Los Padres, Lassen, and Sequoia) hosted workshops. BLM Eagle Lake and Lassen USFS held a joint volunteer training at the Supervisor’s Office in Susanville. We thank the agency archaeologists who hosted these workshops: Marilla Martin, George Kline Amy Girado, Ashley Blythe, Jacqueline Biedl, William Kerwin, Renee Barlow, Linn Gassaway, and Alex Verdugo.
We are pleased to announce that new CASSP coordinators will be taking over the training workshops and other duties. Karen Lacy, collections manager at the San Diego Museum of Man and Michael DeGiovine, archaeologist with Atkins will provide CASSP with new leadership and energy. We will stay involved, and we look forward to supporting Karen and Michael at every opportunity. Please welcome Karen and Michael as future CASSP coordinators.
The Pacific Southwest Region of the US Forest Service provided funds for CASSP through a grant from the California State Parks Off Highway Motor Vehicle Recreation (OHMVR) Division. This grant specifies the SCA and CASSP as partners. Even though USFS is responsible for administering the OHMVR grants, they include BLM Field Offices for training workshops. This cooperation strengthens the partnerships between USFS, BLM, and CASSP volunteers.
CASSP expenditures from October 2015 through September 2016 totaled $59,590, provided by a grant from the OHMVR Division in mid-2015. The grant was matched by in-kind contributions from USFS, BLM, and SCA; and time donated by public volunteers.
4. Plans for 2017
The new year will start with CASSP events at the SCA 2017 Annual Meeting. Look for the CASSP panel discussion on Friday, March 10, and the CASSP poster session on Saturday, March 11. Barbara Tejada, State Parks archaeologist, organized the panel to discuss “Best Practices for Site Stewardship.” After presentations, the audience will offer questions and comments.
Please check the CASSP web site (www.cassp.org) for the current workshop schedule. Questions about CASSP can be sent to email@example.com, or by calling (562) 595-3995.
Submitted by Beth and Chris Padon, at the SCA Executive Board meeting, March 9, 2017.
(For the previous year's report, please download the annual report 2015.pdf)