Volunteer Projects

Cultural Resources Facility Student and Volunteer Program Opportunities

The Projectile Point Database

The Projectile Point Database project will create a dataset that describes and catalogues all projectile points in existing collections and those identified by the CRF during surveys and excavations. HSU student volunteers are busy photographing late stage unifacial and bifacial lithics. Key identification measurements are entered into an Access database that will eventually be converted in to a Geographical Information System (GIS) Feature Class. When completed, the Feature Class will be added to a geo-database that will house various cultural resource datasets. Students will utilize this dataset to perform analysis that has the potential to refine the pre-contact cultural sequence of the North Coast and scientifically test assumptions about flaked stone tool manufacture and use. This dataset may also be shared with those of other researchers in the region.

Historic Buildings Database

The goal of this project is to create a Geographical Information System (GIS) Feature Class that houses spatial and a-spatial data for all known historic buildings in the Humboldt Bay area. Students are currently entering data from several published sources that include information about property location, building style, date of construction etc. Students will collaborate with groups that are conducting, or have conducted historic properties inventories in the Humboldt Bay area, to further this research. When complete the GIS feature class will be added to a geo-database that will hold various cultural resource datasets. Students will utilize this dataset to perform analysis that will provide a greater understanding of European settlement patterns in the Humboldt Bay area.

Ethno-History Project

Pliny Earle Goddard began work as a missionary for the Women's Indian Aid Association at the Hoopa Valley Reservation in 1897. While there, he became interested in the study of Indian cultures. In 1900, he entered the University of California at Berkeley as a graduate student in linguistics, studying under the university's new president, Benjamin Ide Wheeler. During his first year, Goddard "essentially completed" his Life and Culture of the Hupa. Goddard received his Ph. D. from Berkeley in 1904; it was the first ever granted by an American university in linguistics. During his early years at Berkeley he conducted extensive field work in northern California, mostly in Humboldt County, interviewing Indians from the area's numerous Athabascan-speaking tribes. According to one account, Goddard's "method of recording ethnographic and linguistic data became the standard for the discipline, and he became the leading scholar of American Indian languages, especially those of the Athabascan family." In a series of small notebooks, such as those used by stenographers, Goddard recorded vocabularies, stories, cultural information and accounts of the history and geography of the various tribes (Tolowa, Mattole, Sinkyone, Lassik, Nongatl, Hupa, Chilula, Bear River (Nekanni), and Wailaki). He recorded village sites on a series of crude but detailed maps and distilled village information into a series of highly descriptive notecards. In addition to his works on Hupas, he published accounts of the Chilula, Bear River (Nekanni), and Wailaki tribes. The CRF has acquired microfilm reels of Pliny E. Goddard' unpublished field notes and note cards. Unfortunately, through time the notebook pages were disassembled or lost. Today an incomplete microfilm copy of the notebook pages is all that is left to work with, however this collection is the most complete collection that any researcher has utilized. The CRF is currently conducting an Ethno-History Project that will inventory cultural resources identified in these notebook pages. Students are scanning microfilm reels of notebook pages, transcribing the notes in to a legible form, identifying key information regarding location of important places for various cultural groups, and organizing the disassembled pages in to notebooks.

Curation and Collection Management

Assisting with various collection care though cataloging, inventorying, and assessing artifacts. Assisting in processing older collections. Minimum requirements: Must have good attention to detail and able to work well alone with repetitive tasks.

Blue Lake Internship

The Blue Lake Museum is housed in the former Arcata and Mad River Railroad depot at Railroad and G Streets. It has Blue Lake pioneer, local Native American, logging and railroad photos and artifacts. HSU students can work with the Museum Curator: (1) Entering accession records into the computer data base; (2) Assist curator in the accession of new donations; (3) Assist with the cataloging and digitizing of photographs and negatives; and (4) Assist with the installation of exhibits.