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Thomas Buckley Papers - Finding Aid

Biographical Information
Scope and Content Note
Arrangement of the Collection
Container List

Collection Number


Contact Information

The University Library, Special Collections
Cal Poly Humboldt
Arcata, California 95521

Processed By

Susan Gehr, MA

Date Collection Processed



English and Yurok

Collection Creator

Thomas (Tim) C.T. Buckley (1942- )

Dates Covered by Collection

1880-2009, bulk 1976-2002

Size of Collection

6 cubic feet, 8 boxes


Thomas (Tim) Buckley, professor of anthropology and American Studies at University of Massachusetts, Boston (1980-2000), had a primary research interest in the Yurok Indians of northwestern California, beginning with his graduate work (1977, 1982) and culminating in the 2002 publication of Standing Ground: Yurok Indian Spirituality, 1850-1990. His papers include published and manuscript materials related to these publications, to the Gasquet-Orleans (G-O) Road (Lyng v. NICPA) in the 1970s-80s, northwestern California environmental issues, land claims issues, fishing rights, Yurok traditional law, culture, language, and tribal government.


Processed materials are available by appointment. The audiotapes are not currently available. In consultation with the donor, some correspondence has been closed to research use until 2036.


Copyright has not been assigned to Cal Poly Humboldt. To obtain permission to publish or reproduce in any format, please contact the Special Collections Librarian.

Acquisition Information

In 2000, Thomas Buckley donated his research materials, original recordings, field notes, photographs and reports pertaining to the study of the Native peoples of northwestern California to Humboldt State University. In August 2010 Buckley donated one box of additional materials which include his dissertation manuscript, some of his publications and their supporting documentation, some unpublished papers, correspondence and additional background on the G-O Road.

Biographical Information

Thomas (Tim) Buckley conducted fieldwork and practiced advocacy anthropology on the lower Klamath River between 1976 and 1990. His 1976 report advocating against the Chimney Rock section of the G-O Road incorporated Native testimony. He completed his dissertation Yurok Realities in the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries and received his Ph.D. in anthropology from the University of Chicago in 1982. Buckley was on the faculty of the department of anthropology of the University of Massachusetts at Boston for many years (1980-2000). His book Standing Ground: Yurok Indian Spirituality 1850-1990 was published in 2002. After retirement he moved to Maine continuing his work as an independent scholar, poet, and photographer.

Curriculum Vitae

Scope and Content Note

The Thomas (Tim) Buckley Papers are comprised of research files related to his 1976 report to the USDA Forest Service regarding the spiritual High Country of the Native peoples of northwestern California; his 1977 thesis; his 1982 dissertation, Yurok Realities in the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries; his 2002 book Standing Ground: Yurok Indian Spirituality, 1850-1990; and other publications of his related to Yurok and other Indians of northwestern California.

Significant topics represented in this collection include the Gasquet-Orleans [G-O] Road, northwestern California environmental issues, land claims issues, fishing rights, Yurok traditional law, culture, language, and tribal government.

The collection includes Buckley’s field notes and field recordings, copies of other researchers’ field notes, transcripts of recorded interviews, dissertation and manuscript drafts, bibliographies, news clippings, legal documents and one cubic foot of cultural resources studies and environmental impact statements of the Six Rivers National Forest, authored primarily by Kathy Heffner. Also included are approximately 300 photographs, and 44 audio recordings containing Yurok language, research interviews, public lectures, and music of northwestern California Indian peoples.

The University of Washington Library Special Collections holds field notes and tape recordings from Buckley’s 1976, 1978 and 1988 fieldwork fulfilling an agreement for receiving financial support from the Melville and Elizabeth Jacobs Fund, Whatcom Museum, Bellingham, Washington.

Buckley’s work on the Wabanaki Indians of Maine and the 1604 English settlement at Popham, Maine are not represented in this collection. These materials will be donated to the West Bath Historical Society of Maine.

Arrangement of the Collection

The collection had been reboxed after 2000 but had not been rearranged. During processing, series and subseries were identified and folders were shifted somewhat. Buckley’s folder headings were retained with some subtitles in brackets [ ] added for clarity.

The collection is arranged in seven series by type of material. The Research Materials series have been divided into subseries according to subject. Correspondence has been left in the arrangement that Buckley himself used. Fieldnotes, Others is arranged alphabetically by the last name of the researcher. Fieldnotes, Buckley is arranged chronologically. The Publications and Talks series is also arranged chronologically. In the Photographs series, the duplicate photographs (copy prints) from the Ericson and Roberts collections are foldered with no special arrangement. The small number of original photographs are in folders or boxes marked as such. The Tape Recording series contains field interviews from 1976 and 1978, lectures by Thomas Buckley, recordings of Yurok language, and northwestern California Indian music recordings. These materials are not currently processed or available for use.

A review of the correspondence was done during processing. Due to privacy concerns, a selection of the correspondence has been closed until 2036.

Container List

Series: Research materials. Includes documents and publications pertaining to Yurok culture, Yurok tribal government, and matters of importance to all Indians of northwestern California that informed Buckley’s research. Subseries: Yurok Bibliographies, Jessie Short Case, Northwest California (NW CA) Issues , Yurok Language and Culture, Yurok Tribal Government, Gasquet-Orleans (G-O) Road, and Six Rivers National Forest Publications (primarily by Kathy Heffner)

Box 1

Subseries: Bibliographies

1. Bibliographies Re: Yurok. [Pilling 1979, Pilling 1986, UC Pubs in American Archaeology & Ethnology, Buckley, Undated]

Subseries: Jessie Short Case

2. [Attorney correspondence 1987]

3. Jessie Short Case, 1974-1992

4. [Analysis of HR 4469 & S 2723, Hoopa-Yurok Settlement Act, by Thierolf, Attorney at Law]

Subseries: NW CA Issues

5. 1978 Fishing Crisis

6. Yurok news clippings, 1978, 1981

7. Acorn, Salmon, Bear Grass and Herbicides: A Conflict of Culture and Technology." Californians for Alternatives to Toxics, 1996

8. Misc. Klamath River, 1991

9. Native American Heritage Commission Guide re: remains] 1988

10. NW CA ecosystem, 1978-1984

11. California Native American Heritage Commission, 1980-1982

12. Chinook, 1932. [The Klamath Chinook newspaper clipping]

13. [Conference programs, brochures, newsletters, articles, event programs, 1983-1991]

14. Misc. [Sam Jones, Redwood National Park, N. CA Indian Curriculum, 1978-1979]

15. Census Reports, 1880-1915

16. Lucy Thompson / Grace Nicholson, 1916

17. AAIA, 1979

18. DNCHS-NL [Del Norte County Historical Society Bulletins, 1977-1982]

19. [Del Norte County Historical Society Bulletins, 1976-1979]

20. Lindgren, 1983 [Trinidad News & Views article]

21. Indian News [Tri-County Indian Development Council, Inc. newsletters, 1978-1979]

22. Natural Resources [1960-1991]

23. National Archives [Fort Gaston, Captain Spott, Klamath, 1888-1889]

24. [California Census Data by County & Ethnicity, 1990]

25. List of Persons, 1880

26. Sacred Sites Law [1975-1980]

27. [Sacred Sites & Religious Freedom Law]

28. Phyllis Bird [Bird 1990. 1953 Am. Friends Service Comm. visit to Hoopa; log of work camp log by Winfield Hall]

29. [2010 additions, 1934-2004]

Subseries: Yurok Language and Culture

30. Sweathouses

31. Misc. Clippings [1971-2005]

32. Yurok language word lists. Berman, Howard.

Subseries: Yurok Tribal Government

33. Yurok Transition Team [consultation notes, 1990-1991]

34. YTT [Yurok Transition Team]

35. Robert Spott's papers 1934-1953

36. ["The Virtual Reservation: Changes in Land Tenure and Landscape on the Yurok Forest, 1850-1995," undated]

Subseries: Gasquet-Orleans [G-O] Road

37. Buckley 1978 [outline of G-O Road history]

38. [legal documents and articles 1976-1983]

Box 2

1. [Blue Creek Appeal - Tim McKay's letter to Buckley]

2. Buckley 1976 and critiques [critiques by Jim Rock, Jerry Wylie and Donald S. Miller. 1976-1977]

3. Chartkoff Reports 1978 Survey

4. Chartkoff, G-O Review 1977

5. Lake re: G-O Road [1976-1988]

6. [transcript 8/26/81Advisory Council on Historic Preservation hearing, other 1979-1983 articles, newsletters and correspondence]

7. [G-O Road related news letters, legal filings, depositions, USDA USFS decisions, articles by Buckley and others. 1981-1987]

8. Misc. Documents Re: G-O Road - NEC/SMRC [Northcoast Environmental Center / Siskiyou Mtns Resources Council. 1977-1983]

9. [Maps]

10. [Wassaja, 1982 ]

11. [Miller, Donald. "A Report on the Significance of Certain Properties Associated With Traditional Ideological Beliefs and Practices of Northwest California Indians." 1975]

12. [2010 Additions, 1975-1990]

Subseries: Six Rivers National Forest Publications

13. [Trail of the Blue Sun: Cultural Resource Interviewing for the Crogan Compartment. Heffner, Kathy. 1986.]

14. [Shadows of the Rocks. Cultural Resource Interviewing for the Waterdog Timber Sale. Heffner, Kathy. 1986.]

15. [Contemporary-Historic Yurok Ethnographic Data for the proposed Simpson Company Land Exchange With Six Rivers National Forest. Heffner, Kathy. 1986.]

16. [The Ferris Cabin in the Salmon Trinity Alps Wilderness. Heffner, Kathy. 1985.]

17. [Following the Smoke: Contemporary Plant Procurement by the Indians of Northwest California. Heffner, Kathy. 1984.]

18. [Ethnohistoric Study of the Trinity Summit, Humboldt County California. Heffner, Kathy. 1983.]

19. [Final Environmental Impact Statement: Gasquet Orleans Road (Chimney Rock Section) and Record of Decisions.USDA Forest Service: Six Rivers National Forest. 1982.]

20. [Cultural Resources of the Chimney Rock Section, Gasquet-Orleans Road, Six Rivers National Forest. Theodoratus Cultural Research. 1979.]

21. [California State Supplement to Draft Environmental Statement, Roadless Area Review and Evaluation. USFS California Region. 1978.]

22. [Cultural Assessment of the Proposed Orleans-Red Cap Bridge and the Panamenik World Renewal Ceremony. Stumpf, Gary and Yerton, Kim. 1978.]

23. [Draft Environmental Statement: Gasquet-Orleans Road Chimney Rock Section. Six Rivers National Forest: California Region, USDA Forest Service. 1977.]

Box 3

1. [Archaeological Reconnaissance Report of the Chimney Rock Section of the Gasquet-Orleans Road. Wylie, Henry G. and Heffner, Kathy. 1976.]

2. [Archaeological Studies of the Six Rivers National Forest and Adjacent Areas of Del Norte, Humboldt and Trinity Counties, California: A Bibliography and Map.Wylie, Henry G. and Heffner, Kathy. 1976.]

3 [A Synopsis of Supernatural Indian Properties in and Adjacent to the Eightmile-Blue Creek Planning Units, Six Rivers National Forest, California.Wylie, Henry G. and Heffner, Kathy.1976.]

4. [Final Environmental Statement: Eightmile-Blue Creek Units. Six Rivers National Forest, USDA Forest Service. 1975.]

5. [Draft Environmental Statement: Eightmile-Blue Creek Units. Six Rivers National Forest, USDA Forest Service. 1974.

Series: Correspondence. Correspondence between Buckley and academic and professional colleagues as well as government agency personnel.

6. Buckley to FS [Buckley to USDA Forest Service. 1974-1977]

7. FS to Buckley [USDA Forest Service to Buckley. 1975-1979]

8. Others to FS etc. [Chartkoff, Pilling, Roberts, Lake, California Indian Legal Services. 1973-1978]

9. Gen. Re. Y [General correspondence regarding Yurok. 1977-1990]

10. Buckley to Others Re: GO [1976-1981]

11. Others to Buckley Re: "GO" [1976-1980]

12. Pilling to Buckley, B to P [1975-1978]

13. [Folder 1 of 3: Terry Straus, Michael Silverstein, Alfonso Ortiz, Peter Nabokov, Larry Nesper, Paul Proux, Malcolm Margolin, HSU: Lee Bowker, HSU: Ethnic Studies, Thomas Gates, Lee Davis, Arnold Pilling. 1977-1992]

14. [Folder 2 of 3: This folder has been intentionally left empty.  Contents closed to research use until 2036]

15. [Folder 3 of 3: Victor Golla, Dorothea Dooling, Paul Friedrich, Lee Davis, Barbara Dean, Paul Proux, Howard Berman, Peter Nabokov, Robert Winthrop, Richard Keeling, Joan Berman, George Appell, Clara Sue Kidwell, Malcom Margolin. 1984-1988]

Series: Fieldnotes, Others. Fieldnotes and transcripts produced by other researchers.

16. Beyer, Sylvia. Sylvia Beyer / R. Spott, 1934 [Robert Spott]

17. Heberger, Diane. Heberger Tapes. [transcripts of Sealy Griffin, Frank Douglas, Dewey George, Florence Shaughnessy. 1974-1975]

18. Heffner, Kathy. [Golla conversation re: Trinity Summit area. 1978.]

19. Heth, Charlotte. Heth. [C. Heth NW CA Music Report 1976]

20. Kroeber, Alfred. Kroeber/Spott - Note for Inland Whale 1933

21. Kroeber, Alfred. Menstruation, Misc Y-Transcripts [1902, 1933]

22. Kroeber, Alfred. Kroeber - "Wood" [undated]

23. Kroeber, Alfred. Kroeber: Formulas. [undated]

24. Larson, Eric. Larson, HKR fieldnotes. [undated]

25. Pilling, Arnold. Rekwoy Map. [1976]

26. Pilling, Arnold. Pilling Notes. [1968-1977]

27. Pilling, Arnold. Pilling "A". [Pilling Set 'A', Pilling Field notes. 1968]

28. Pilling, Arnold. Pilling "B". [1968-1977]

29. Pilling, Arnold. Pilling "C". [1968-1969]

30. Pilling, Arnold. Pilling "D". [1968-1969]

31. Pilling, Arnold. [1968-1973, Pilling Fieldnotes.]

32. Pilling, Arnold. [Pekwan Dance Photo 1893, Pilling Fieldnotes. 1968.]

33. Sapir, Edward. Yurok Language Notebook, 1927. [American Philosophical Society]

34. Theodoratus. Notes from Theodoratus project. [Interviews with Frances Jayne, Lowana Brantner, Richard McClelland, Ted McCovey, Ella Norris. 1978]

35. Williams and Lewis. "Family Life of the Yurok Indians as told by Ruth Roberts, Curator of the McNulty Museum, Crescent City, Ca. 1969.

Series: Fieldnotes, Buckley.  Fieldnotes and transcripts produced by Buckley.

Box 4

1. [undated, unlabeled - 5 notebooks]

2. [undated] NW Calif. Addresses

3. [undated] Y-Rel Lang [Paper written for a class based on fieldwork on Yurok religious language]

4. [undated] Ruth K. Roberts - Misc.

5. [1974-undated] CICD language and calendar notes, bibliographic notes and Pilling notes]

6. [1976] 1976 Fieldnotes. Incomplete.

7. [1976] Summer 1976 Yurok. 7/3/76 - 8/10/76, 8/11/76 - 9/8/76, 8/14/76 Supplemental Notebook, 9/9/76 #3

8. [1976] Kroeber 1976 [Yurok Myths annotations]

9. [1976] Fieldnotes [some transcripts of recorded interviews]

10. [1976] Fieldnotes, 1976, Buckley

11. [1976] Fieldnotes, 1976, Buckley

12. [1977] Fieldnotes, 1977

13. [1977-1982] Hamp/Yurok [Eric Hamp re: Yurok language]

14. [1978] NB Yur - Sum 1978 I, II, III, IV

15. [1978] [Fieldnotes]

16. [1978] 1978 - pp. 128-159

17. [1978] Fieldnotes 1978 (August / September)

18. [1978] Fieldnotes, 1978

19. [1978] Research Reports 1978, Buckley

20. [1978] Florence "Jewelry" 1978

21. [1988] Fieldnotes NW California 8/31-9/29 /88

22. [This folder has been intentionally left empty. Contents closed to research use until 2036]

23. [1989-1990]

24. [1990] 1990

25. [1991] Spring 1991

Box 5

1. [1991] HSU 1991

2. [1995] Indianapolis / California 3/95 [Waukell]

Series: Publications and Talks. Drafts, offprints, and documents relating to publications and presentations by Thomas Buckley.

3. Walking in Beauty, Harry Kellett Roberts manuscript. Preface: notes and comments.

4. Walking in Beauty, Harry Kellett Roberts manuscript. Introductory chapter, parts I and II.

5. Walking in Beauty, Harry Kellett Roberts manuscript. Misc.

6. Walking in Beauty, Harry Kellett Roberts manuscript. Balance

7. Walking in Beauty, Harry Kellett Roberts manuscript. Beauty

8. Walking in Beauty, Harry Kellett Roberts manuscript. Price

9. Walking in Beauty, Harry Kellett Roberts manuscript. Marriage/Family

10. Walking in Beauty, Harry Kellett Roberts manuscript. Puberty

11. Walking in Beauty, Harry Kellett Roberts manuscript. [unlabeled]

12. Walking in Beauty, Harry Kellett Roberts manuscript. Seeing

13. Walking in Beauty, Harry Kellett Roberts manuscript. Power. Part II ch. 4

14. Walking in Beauty, Harry Kellett Roberts manuscript. Part II, Chapter 1, Seeing

15. Walking in Beauty, Harry Kellett Roberts manuscript. Power

16. Walking in Beauty, Harry Kellett Roberts manuscript. deffinition [sic]

17. Walking in Beauty, Harry Kellett Roberts manuscript. Part I, Childhood

18. HKR - Poems1

19. [Undated-1980. Unpublished papers]

20. [1982] [Buckley Ph. D. drafts]

21. [1982] TB: Ph. D. Dissertation [Yurok Realities in the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries]

22. [1982-1989] [Articles published in 1980s]

23. [2000-2004] [Standing Ground: preparation, publication and promotion]

24. [undated-2002] [Buckley manuscripts published as portions of Standing Ground]

25. [2002-2008] SG [Standing Ground] Feedback. [Correspondence and book reviews]

26. [2002] [2002 prize for Blood Magic anthology]

27. [2003] [Book Review, Religion and Sexuality in Cross Cultural Perspective]

Box 6

1. [2003] [Poetry. 'Dancing With Davey']

2. [2003] Calif. 10-11/03 Misc. [Notes for talks given in October & November 2003]

3. [2003-2004] [Book reviews published in Ethnohistory]

4. [2005] Dartmouth '05 [Paper presented 'Lives Aren't Simply Given' 100 Years of Anthropology in Calif.]

5. [2005] AAA Paper Drafts [Paper Presented "Blue Wave" Draft and notes]

6. [2005] AAA 2005 TSHA Session "Interpreting Our World: the Humanistic Experience Past, Present and Future."

7. [2006] Fogelson Volume [Book. Kan, Sergei. A and Turner Strong, Pauline (eds.). 'New Perspectives on Native North America Cultures, Histories and Representations.']

8. [2007] Nebraska/Du Bois Intro. [Book Introduction. Du Bois, Cora. 'The 1870 Ghost Dance.']

9. [2009] Parabola Reprints

10. [2009] Anthropological Linguistics (2009). [Book Review. O'Neill, Sean (2008) 'Cultural Contact and Linguistic Relativity Among the Indians of Northwestern California.']

Series: Photographs

11. Roberts Collection duplicates (20 sheets)

12. Roberts Collection duplicates (20 sheets)

13. Roberts Collection duplicates (20 sheets)

14. Roberts Collection duplicates (20 sheets)

15. Roberts Collection duplicates (20 sheets)

16. Roberts Collection duplicates (20 sheets)

17. Roberts Collection duplicates (20 sheets)

18. Roberts Collection duplicates (20 sheets)

19. Roberts Collection duplicates (20 sheets)

20. Roberts Collection duplicates

21. Duplicates from other collections (27 sheets)

22. Pilling correspondence re: Ericson and Roberts photos. 1969.]

23. Original photographs (6 sheets)

24. [Robert Spott / Coleman Studio portrait. 1920]

25. Postcards (6)

Box 7 (flat box 12 x 15")

14 Ericson Collection duplicates (11x14"), 1966 photo of Nellie Griffith, 1966 photo of Nellie Griffith and Ruth Roberts, and duplicate of photo of Bertha Mitchell and Beverly Walsh which appeared on the cover of News From Native California v. 4, no. 4.

Series: Tape recordings. Field interviews from 1976 and 1978, lectures by Thomas Buckley, recordings of Yurok language, and northwestern California Indian music recordings. These materials are not currently processed or available for use.

Box 8 (Restricted Materials)

Related Works

University of Washington, Special Collections holds the "Thomas C. T. Buckley papers, 1976-1988."  (

Indian Action Council, Eureka, California holds a complimentary collection, "The Thomas Buckley PhD Collection." (

Subject Headings

Yurok Indians
Gasquet-Orleans Road (Calif.)
Yurok Indians--California, Northern--History.
Yurok Indians--California, Northern--Social life and customs.
Yurok Indians--Religion.
Yurok Indians--History.
Yurok Indians--Social life and customs.