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Chumash Powered | The craft of building Chumash canoes

Author(s): Patagonia
Video Release Date: April 12, 2023
Video Source: YouTube

The Chumash have been a maritime culture for thousands of years, their territory stretching from Malibu to Point Conception and westward to the sandstone cliffs of the Channel Islands, twenty miles off the coast of California. To navigate the treacherous currents of the channel for fishing and trading, they built the strong plank canoe tomols for which they are famous. But over centuries of European colonization, which included forced assimilation and enslavement of Chumash people, the craft of tomol building was nearly lost. Today, Alan Salazar works alongside his Chumash and Fernandeño Tataviam communities to pass their knowledge to the next generation of tomol builders and paddlers.

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