Hollister Field Office

Projectile point, photo by BLMCultural Resources

BLM's Cultural Resource Management Program is designed as a comprehensive system to:

RESPOND in a legally and professionally adequate manner to the statutory authorities concerning historic preservation and cultural resource protection, and the principles of multiple use and ecosystem management;

RECOGNIZE the potential public and scientific uses of, and the values attributed to, cultural resources on the public lands and manage both the lands and cultural resources so that these uses and values are not diminished, but rather are maintained and enhanced;

CONTRIBUTE to land use planning and the multiple use management of the public lands in ways that make optimum use of the thousands of years of land use history inherent in cultural resource information, and that opportunities for attaining appropriate uses of cultural resources are safeguarded;

PROTECT and preserve in place representative examples of the full array of cultural resources on public lands for the benefit of scientific and public use by present and future generations; and

ENSURE that proposed land uses, initiated or authorized by the BLM, avoid inadvertent damage to Federal and non-Federal cultural resources.

Archeological site CA-Mnt-1818H, photo by E. Zaborsky BLM

Archeological Site CA-Mnt-1818H, Henneken Ranch ruins


The term "cultural resources" can apply to archeological sites, Native American traditional items, historical objects or documents, or even cultural uses of the natural environment.

Projectile Point from San Benito County, photo by E. Zaborsky BLM

Rossi Square-stemmed Projectile Point

This projectile point form is very distinct for central California and seems to be associated with prehistoric archeological sites dating before 1000 B.C.


Please respect both prehistoric and historic archeological sites.

Do not remove any artifacts or deface any features.

Be especially mindful of what those sites may mean to Native Americans; some of these places are regarded as sacred.

Help to protect our cultural heritage by observing the following:

    • Treat all sites with respect
    • Do not damage historic structures or sites by moving things around or climbing on the roof or walls of a site
    • Enjoy rock art by viewing, sketching, or taking a photograph...never chalk, trace, or touch the art
    • Do not make camp or build fires in, on, or near a site
    • If you discover an artifact report your find to the BLM
    • Collecting without a permit is illegal.

Thank you for your cooperation while you explore your nation's history!

Visitors at Joaquin Rocks, photo by E. Zaborsky BLM

Visitors learning about the historic Joaquin Rocks area


The prehistoric record refers to archeological remains associated with human activities prior to European contact with Native Americans.  There is ample evidence that prehistoric peoples occupied the Diablo Mountain Range of California for thousands of years right up to the time the Spanish began actively exploring and colonizing California in the 1700s.

Hundreds of years ago one of the primary food staples within the region were acorns harvested from oak trees.  Mature nuts were gathered by families in the fall using large, conical baskets carried by women.  Women also processed the acorns by grounding them into meal within bedrock mortars or oak log mortars.  The acorn meal was then leached of its bitter and poisonous tannin by placing the meal into a leaf or sand lined basin and pouring water over it until the water ran clear through the meal.  The meal would be baked into cakes or a broth, sometimes seasoned with manzanita berries.


The historic record refers to the archeological remains associated with human activities that occurred after European contact with Native Americans.  In California, Indian people along the coast were first affected by the Spanish explorers as early as the 1500s.  European contact meant that the Native California Indian ways of life would be drastically changed.

By the mid1800s Spain ceded California to the Mexican government and the Spanish Mission system came to an end.  After gold was discovered in 1848 American interests flooded California.  Native Indian, Spanish, Mexican, and American families began to create the California that we live in today.


Native California Indians have a cultural legacy which is only partly reflected by archeology.  Information about their cultural traditions has been written down by anthropologists as well as handed down orally generation to generation.  This kind of information is called "ethnographic."  California had - and still has - the distinction of an incredibly diverse array of peoples, languages, and customs.  The area managed by the Hollister Field Office is populated by several different Native groups including the Yokuts, the Salinan, the Esselen, and the Ohlone (or Costanoan).

Today California Indians live in and around their tribal areas and are keenly aware of their cultural heritage, practicing traditional activities.

Sorry, Archaeologists Don't Dig Dinosaurs!

Many people confuse archaeology with paleontology.  To learn more about paleontology - including dinosaurs, ancient horses, and mesozoic reptiles visit the Hollister Field Office Paleontological Resources web page.

Image of a dinosaur, BLM image

Projectile point, photo by BLMPetryglyph, photo by BLMHistoric structures, photo by BLM

BLM Cultural Resources

BLM California State Office Cultural, Tribal, and Paleontological Resources Program: State Protocol Agreement (PA) with California State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO)

Curse of the Stolen Artifacts funnybytes logo

Information & Reference

Project Archaeology logo


 Anza Trail historic re-creationist commemorates the trail

Anza National Historic Trail on the Fort Ord National Monument

History and Significance of the Anza Expedition

Opal Point Rocks, photo by E. Zaborsky BLM

Cultural Resources of the California Coastal National Monument

Local Museum Partners

Agricultural History Project logo

Agricultural History Project

Image from the interior of R.C. Baker Museum, photo by R.C. Baker Museum

R.C. Baker Museum

Archeological Research

Society for California Archaeology Logo

Society for California Archaeology

California Indian Basketweavers Association logo

California Indian Basketweavers Association


California Archaeological Site Stewardship Logo

California Archaeological Site Stewardship Program (CASSP)

California Archaeological Site Stewards are caretakers of sensitive archeological sites and sometimes work on site excavations or laboratory analysis of artifacts.

Passport In Time logo

Passport in Time (PIT) is managed by the USDA Forest Service for volunteers to experience archeology-based research projects.

Leave No Trace logo

Bureau of Land Management
Hollister Field Office
20 Hamilton Court
Hollister, CA 95023
Phone: (831) 630-5000
Fax: (831) 630-5055
Office Hours: 7:30 a.m. - 4:00 p.m., M-F
Contact us by Email