FOCUS

Environmental Protection | Freedom, Peace and Equality | Broadcast & Publication | Art
(Comments on statement below and suggested additions to the list welcome.)

Environmental Protection
North Coast Environmental Center (EcoNews)
Spray Alert! (1970s - 80s campaign)
Mattole Restoration Council
EPIC (Environmental Protection Information Center)
Sally Bell Grove (1980s campaign)
Institue for Sustainable Forestry
Forests Forever (1980s - 90s campaign)
Trees Foundation
Ancient Forest International
Redwood Summer (1990s campaign)
Humboldt Baykeeper
Friends of the Eel
Ecological Rights Foundation
Mateel Environmental Justice Foundation

Freedom, Peace and Equality
Southern Humboldt Working Together
Forest Lands and Products Cooperative
Beginnings – schools
Salmon Creek Community School
United Stand! – Humboldt County
Institute for Sustainable Forestry
ACORN Alliance
Civil Liberties Monitoring Project
Citizen Observation Group
Earth First! Humboldt County
North Coast Co-op – grocery store
Ruby Valley Co-op – food and sundries outside Redway, closed 1980s
Veterans Vietnam Restoration Project
Pacific Justice Center – activist law firm
Mel Pearlston – attorney and civil rights activist
Ron Sinoway – attorney and civil rights activist
Bonnie Blackberry – civil rights activist
ED Denson – civil rights activist, musician, attorney and radio programmer
Casa del Corazon – Redway foster home for girls founded by Sheila Hahn
Women in Shelter
Redwood AIDS Information Network
Paul Encimer – peace and advocate for the poor
Hospice of the Redwoods
Town Square – Garberville
Community Park – Garberville
Richard Salzman – law suit against Arcata panhandling ordinance
Mateel Community Credit Union – later Southern Humboldt CCU
Redwood Rural Health Center
Open Door Community Health Center
Humboldt Grassroots – Anarchist group
Logging and other labor history
Aid to poor history

Broadcast & Publication
Star Root – periodical, newspaper format
KERG – radio
Gulch Mulch – community newsletter
KMUD – radio
Green Fuse – periodical, newspaper format
Access Humboldt TV – community access cable TV channel
Community Access TV – Arcata

Art
Summer / Winter Arts Festival – Benbow
Fireman’s Hall / Mateel Community Center – Garberville / Redway
Feet First Dancers
Jane Lapiner – choreographer
David Simpson – playwright
Sheila & Jesse – musicians
Jerry Martien – poet and teacher
Anna Banana – activist and musician
Backwoods Jazz Association – Garberville
Les Scher – musician, attorney and writer
Jazz on the Lake – Benbow
Rod Deal and the Ideals – musicians
Ink People – Eureka
Darryl Cherney – activist and musician
Human Nature – theater company
Pure Schmint Players – theater company – Jentri Anders page on Pure Schmint
Jentri Anders – anthropologist, author and Southern Humboldt archivist.
Joani Rose – actor, songwriter and director of Mateel Community Center-based Recycled Youth theater program
Al “Owl” Ceraulo – actor, director, playwright and screenwriter
Recycled Youth – annual Mateel CC theater program co-written with performers since 1997
Reggae on the River – music festival
Music for Little People – music production and distribution
Bembe Records – music production and distribution – Redway
David Peñalosa – musician, teacher and author
Del Arte – theater company – Blue Lake
Synapsis– dance and performance center – Eureka
The Sanctuary – cultural center – Arcata

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Why a “Peoples Archive” for the Humboldt Bay Area?

First – because local institutions, including Humboldt State University, are resisting, or outright refusing, to acquire new paper and object collections. Despite this unfortunate trend, we, as individuals, have already established relationships with colleagues at these institutions and look forward to strengthening them. Too often recent histories are ignored until it’s too late and records have been lost.

Second – because the contents of such an archive will become a monument – with index and documentation! – to the histories of achievement, and failure, that we need to preserve now more than ever. Why now? Because of the enduring and rampant delusion that all important records will one day, and forevermore, be available on the Internet. An argument frequently used by institutions to eliminate and dump paper records, still the only stable information storage format. You may recall, or have heard of, the CD-ROM? In the 1990s many encyclopedias, reports, and studies, were digitally published using this then-revolutionary medium, saving tons of paper. Do you know anyone able to open one today?

At no time in the last century, at least since the 1915 election of Socialist mayor Elijah Falk in Eureka, has the North Coast enjoyed a period as rich in publications, organizations and people dedicated to protecting the earth and fostering a more just society and culture. In large part, for this we must thank the Sixties generation of hippies, environmentalists, Leftists and artists, whether homegrown or transplants to the region. An active memory of this recent past protects today’s advances against the depredations of future ignorance.

And there’s still so much to do! This archive will be a tool not only for understanding but improving on these advances.

Besides preserving the documents that reveal the nuts and bolts of politics and organization building, or art practices and private lives, another aim of this archive is to foster the values that lead, and will continue to lead, more of us to enjoy greater equality and freedom in better harmony with the natural world. Additionally, while we founders tend to be leftist in our politics and worldview, any political or cultural activism for what its proponents believe is a better world, is a legitimate subject for this archive.

The Fallacy of Memorial-by-Results
Many believe that if you save an ancient forest, restore a river, or stop a war, it will be enough to advance the cause behind these acts for others to see the inherent value of the achievements in the results themselves. This argument assumes that people will be reminded to protect nature and stop war merely by beholding the now restored natural landscape or, someday, learning there’s no war. We believe this is not true. We believe that the areas of human advancement we list above will only be preserved by remembering the individuals and groups who achieved them – in addition to why, how, where and when exactly they were realized.

Consider, for instance, the monuments to human achievement you do see around Humboldt Bay – or anywhere in the County and region?  "The Fisherman" statue on Woodley Island and the Carson Mansion come to mind. The former, a tribute to dangerous labor, fits our focus. But the latter, a lumber baron’s Victorian palace turned tourist attraction and exclusive dinner club, does not. And it is by far the most prominent.

This archive provides a place to remember and promote those achievements, none of which will enjoy the easy monumental status of a picturesque mansion on the National Historic Register.

About the four areas of focus listed above, and their order:

Environmental Protection comes first because, within the roughly four decades upon which we are now concentrating, it has enjoyed the most success in establishing legal and political bulwarks that have had measureable impacts, for instance on understanding and restoring watersheds, waterways and forests. Despite early divisive struggles, it is also the most unifying theme of cultural and political work.

Under the heading Freedom, Peace and Equality, we include a range of organizations and activism from economic development, civil rights and privacy, health and hospice work, to anti-war and nonviolence training.

Entries under Broadcast & Publication explain themselves. Art, likewise. Neither of these is less important.

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