‘Legacy of historical land use, abuse’ in Yuba, Bear River watersheds discussed Tuesday | TheUnion.com

‘Legacy of historical land use, abuse’ in Yuba, Bear River watersheds discussed Tuesday

Submitted to The Union
“The Yuba and Bear River watersheds have been manipulated by various groups of people for their own needs and desires, especially since the gold rush." Malakoff Diggins State Historic Park serves as a reminder of such, as the landscape is still scarred from now-banned practice of hydraulic gold mining.
Submitted photo

While many are aware of the obvious physical features of Yuba and Bear River country, there are a number of landscapes that have been created by human activities. Some of the changes have been deliberate while others were inadvertent — most of them once considered good ideas.

According to a news release, local history buff, archaeologist and author Hank Meals will present a slide show with live commentary on this aspect of regional history at the North Columbia Schoolhouse Cultural Center on San Juan Ridge at 7 p.m. Tuesday.

“The western slope of the north-central Sierra Nevada is surrounded by the proximity of the past,” the release states. “The Yuba and Bear River watersheds have been manipulated by various groups of people for their own needs and desires, especially since the gold rush. A great deal of past human influence is still visible in the landscape and historic practices continue to affect its functioning, particularly in the areas of water management and fire suppression policies.

“Stories that speak to indigenous land use, gold mining, water delivery systems, lumbering, transportation, freighting, homesteading, hydroelectricity, irrigation, grazing, fire suppression and recreation are imbedded in our region’s geography. If you spend time exploring outdoors, you’ll probably appreciate seeing more in the landscape than you did before.”

Admission to the talk is $10 at the door. North Columbia Schoolhouse Cultural Center is located at 17894 Tyler-Foote Road on San Juan Ridge. Visit http://www.northcolumbiaschoolhouse.org or call 530-265-2628 for information.


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