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Carey Stanton's Santa Cruz Island

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Date: August 28, 2007
Contact: Yvonne Menard, 805-658-5725

Marla Daily, president of the Santa Cruz Island Foundation, will be the September speaker for the “From Shore to Sea” lecture series. Her presentation will highlight the Stanton family’s tenure on Santa Cruz Island, the largest of the eight Channel Islands.

From 1937, when Los Angeles businessman Edwin L. Stanton purchased the western nine-tenths of the island, until the 1987 death of Stanton’s son and heir, Carey Stanton, Santa Cruz Island remained the largest privately owned island in the continental United States. Three years before his death, Carey Stanton wrote:

I had the unique experience of spending all my school vacations and as much other time as possible on our 55,000 acre island ranch. It was truly a wonderful place to grow up, a marvelously-preserved, 19th century working cattle ranch. A graduate of Stanford University School of Medicine, I worked in internal medicine and pathology for about ten years and then, overtaken by good sense, I returned to Santa Cruz Island in 1957. The ranch records indicate that my return was on the 10th of April, twenty years to the day after my parents acquired the Island. It was, in retrospect, the wisest decision of my life.

For the next thirty years, Carey Stanton lived and worked on Santa Cruz Island. This presentation takes a very personal peek into the world in which Carey Stanton lived from 1937 through 1987.

Daily is a cultural anthropology graduate of the University of California, Santa Barbara. In 1973 she began working at the university’s Santa Cruz Island Reserve and shortly thereafter was hired as personal assistant to Dr. Carey Stanton, who at the time owned nine-tenths of Santa Cruz Island. In 1985 Stanton founded the Santa Cruz Island Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to the preservation of the cultural histories of all eight California Channel Islands. Daily has been president of the foundation since Dr. Stanton’s death in 1987.

The “From Shore to Sea” lecture series is jointly sponsored by Channel Islands National Park, Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary, and Santa Barbara Maritime Museum in an effort to further the understanding of research on the Channel Islands and surrounding waters. The lectures occur at 7:00 p.m. on Tuesday, September 11, 2007, at the Santa Barbara Maritime Museum at 113 Harbor Way in Santa Barbara Harbor and Wednesday, September 12, 2007, at the Channel Islands National Park Robert J. Lagomarsino Visitor Center located at 1901 Spinnaker Drive in the Ventura Harbor. The programs are free and open to the public.

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Blue whale                                          Photo: Brad Sillasen

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