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The discovery of two sites with basal strata dated by AMS to over 10,000 rcybp confirms that the earliest occupation of Isla Cedros occurred during the terminal Pleistocene, i.e., before 12,000 cal BP.
The importance of this discovery for understanding the peopling of the New World is remarkable and will contribute greatly to the active dialogue on the topic.
Located off the west coast of the Mexican state of Baja California, Isla Cedros—Island of Fogs—is site to some of the most extensive and remarkable archeological discoveries on the continent.
Father Miguel Venegas’ 1739 Obras californianas is the most extensive and detailed document covering the first forty years of the Jesuit period in Baja California.
In addition to providing discussions of historical events, Venegas wrote extensively on the natural world and on indigenous cosmology, social networks, and lifeways.
This demonstrates that the availability of natural resources is an insufficient catalyst for the emergence of such a socio-economic structure.
Instead, the creation, elaboration, and maintenance of social networks are seen as both prerequisite to, and structurally supportive of systems of regional exchange, interaction, and risk sharing.The section translated and annotated here includes the bulk of Venegas’ writing on Isla Cedros and its native people.