The following table lists the historical features, their probable age, function, and general
characteristics.  This information suggests a historic Native American community that was
maintaining their traditional lake resource economic focus and their traditional religious focus
while taking on some of the agricultural practices of the colonizing European culture.  The features
indicate differences between households in economic focus as well as traditional focus.

Features 1, 2, 3, 5, and 6 all included Chinese related materials suggesting that most Elem
households accepted the Chinese mine-working pioneers into their families.   The features indicate
that different households specialized in different economic activities. Feature 4 had an abundance of
fishing related material where Features 5 and 6 had more agricultural related material.  Some features
(particularly Feature 4 but also 5 and 6) had more “traditional” cultural items suggesting that older
or more traditional individuals lived in these households.  Children’s items used by both girls and
boys were found in two of the features (5 and 6).  A striving to be self-sufficient and not tied to the
market economy introduced by the colonizing Europeans was evident by the existence of canning jars
in most of the features (2, 5, 6, 7).
Site maintained as a public service by Archaeological Research, PO Box 1353, Lucerne, CA 95458.
Contact: dr.john@wolfcreekarcheology.com
Elem Feature Interpretation
History and Prehistory of Lake County
and Beyond
Fea.
Date
Type of
Deposit
Representing
Traditional
Use of
Lake
Children
Home
Canning
Chinese
Material
1
pre
1917
Trash Pit
General
Household
Refuse
?
?
?
?
yes
2
1903-
1934
House   
Feature
General
Household
Refuse
Stone
Tool
Making
?
?
yes
yes
3
Pre
1917
House   
Feature
General
Household
Refuse
?
Fish bone
?
?
yes
Many
4
Pre
1917
House   
Feature
Fisherman
Household
Refuse
Shell
Bead
Making
Boat
parts,
fish bone
and shell
?
?
?
5
1900-
1960
House   
Feature
Agricultural
Household
Refuse
Shell
Bead
Making
Shell
boys &
girls
yes
yes
6
1880-
1958
House   
Feature
General
Household
Refuse
Shell
Bead
Making
?
boys &
girls
yes
yes
7
1880-
1930
Sheet
Deposit
General
Household
Refuse
?
Boat parts
?
yes
yes
It is likely that these historic features contained information that could have been used to define
specific families and the economic and cultural differences each family brought to the community as
a whole.

The study of these features could have provided documentation on the rate of acculturation that was
occurring in the community following European colonization of the area.  

A study of the Chinese materials contained in these features could have provided a timetable for the
arrival of Chinese pioneers in Lake County as well as an indication of what part of China they came
from.  The Chinese materials could have indicated their cultural status in the community and when
and if they were forced to return to China following passage of the 1888 Scott Act (any Chinese who
returned to China could not return to the U.S.) or the 1892 Geary Act (all Chinese in the U.S. must
carry certificates of residence).

Unfortunately, all the historic features described on this page were destroyed by EPA grading without
any data recovery or mitigation as required by the National Historic Preservation Act.
Click to learn more about this EPA disaster