Shadows of the Past
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An uplifted, ridged arm of land, the Point Loma Peninsula provides a weather shield for a large shallow bay and extensive low-lying terrain east of the landform. Similar to several other bays of California's coast protected by peninsular landforms, Point Loma's ridgetop provides a lookout point for Pacific Ocean views as well as contrasting vistas of urban cityscapes against a backdrop of magnificent mountains. Cabrillo National Monument, a unit in the Nation's National Park System, occupies a prominent position on the headland as a loyal sentry, watching the changes of history and seasonal environments.

Legacy from the Geological Past

The monument is composed of about 160 acres of land ranging from tidal zones to about 460 feet above sea level, with brush-covered, eroded slopes and modern developments for military and public uses. The coastline is irregular with only small sand 'pocket' beaches along the western tidepool zone and bedrock seacliffs around remaining shorelines. Three geological formations compose this major promontory which was formed from 300-foot uplift motion along a major faultline. A basal Point Loma Formation is superimposed by the Cabrillo Formation of sandstones and conglomerates, and the visable, younger Bay Point Formation that forms marine terraces and uplands.

Tilted and resistant, the Point Loma Formation was formed 70 to 80 million years ago from Cretaceous Period deep ocean deposits and extends from northern Baja California to about Carlsbad, California. Marine life fossils include mollusks, gastropods, and other invertebrates as well as shark, fish, and armored plant eating reptiles (Abbott 1999: 46). There are even preserved marine worm trails, burrows, and trackways on the mudstones, indicating ancient terrestrial life! Fossil discoveries have been made along the exposed Point Loma Formation sea cliffs of the peninsula and a few specimens were found within the monument's tidepool areas. Of particular interest is the 'ammonite' fossils of the Cephalopod group (squid, octopus and nautilus) which show tooth marks from the plant-eating 'mosasaur' reptile (Bergen, Clifford and Spear 1997: 57).

The Cabrillo Formation has two characteristic beds: a thick layer of cobbles, gravels and boulder conglomerate and a sandstone layer. It does not contain as rich a fossil record as the Point Loma Formation but is of deep marine origin also (Abbott 1999: 40; Bergen, Clifford and Spear 1997: 55). Less resistant to the sea, the 66 to 70 million years old Cabrillo Formation is eroded into undercut seacliff caves and ledges.

Forming coastal terraces on both sides of the peninsula, the Bay Point Formation supports coastal sage scrub, cacti and marine succulents, chaparral, oak and Torrey pines observed in early historic periods, and introduced vegetation. This Formation is composed of marine and non-marine sandstone beds but is not very old. The peninsula was an island during an interglacial period about 120,000 to 140,000 years ago but became connected to the mainland by westward growth of a delta and bay by the San Diego River less than 11,000 years ago (Abbott 1999: 213).

Life on the Land

Long ago, animals, birds, and sea life characteristic of the peninsula included land mammals, amphibians, fish and shellfish in the intertidal zone, and kelp-dwelling smaller fish. Invertebrates such as clams, oysters, scallops, and abalone still are visible. Except for lacking resources of fresh water springs, seeps, or open-flowing streams, the peninsula contains most elements for long term human occupation. Pedestrian access within this narrow landform would have been possible by routes along the higher ridgetops and down drier, south-facing slopes with less dense native vegetation to the coastal zones. A major change to Point Loma's appearance was the cutting of vegetation during the 19th century, particularly along the more sheltered east side, which would have resulted in expansion of chaparral and sage scrub communities. Dense clusters of oaks and Torrey pines were observed by early European explorers, giving the peninsula a very different appearance that today. From the 1500 acres composing the southern portion of Point Loma, a 640 acre Ecological Reserve has been established by federal agencies to protect the six identified plant communities and habitats which exist as isolated areas among historic and recent developments.

Blessed with a mild climate, the peninsula is classified as a Mediterranean semi-arid steppe moderated by ocean influences such as fogs, winds, and rainfall during December to April, which averages 10.6 inches per year. Typical native plants are lemonade berry, madrone, toyon, cacti species, century plant, sage, supplemented by exotic plants such as ice plant, grasses, bottlebrush, and ivy.

Establishment of the Monument

This National Monument was established on October 14, 1913 by Presidential authorities in the 1906 'Antiquities Act' as a one-acre monument within military lands. Following a War Department reorganization, the parcel was transferred to Interior in 1933 and subsequently enlarged by Presidential proclamations (Knipper 1996, Lehmann 1987).

Originally established to commemorate the first presence of Europeans on the West Coast — Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo and his landing in 1542 — purposes of the monument now include preservation of the 1854 lighthouse, structures and facilities of WWI and WWII, viewscapes, whale-watching and natural resource habitats. Average annual public visitation is over a million persons! The lighthouse was the first of eight constructed for America's West Coast and is on the National Register of Historic Places as a National Historic Landmark.

Historic military structures and facilities within the monument are included within a listed National Register Historic District. Neighboring lands are Navy facilities, City of San Diego Wastewater Treatment Plant, and the Coast Guard Light Station built in 1891. Many Navy installations include former historic Army structures and land uses. A detailed administrative history discusses the unusual historical development of the monument as one of the first units in the National Park System to be established in proximity to an urban area (Lehmann 1987).

Various planning documents also contain specific information, planning options, and historic architectural descriptions for the Old Point Loma Lighthouse (Holland and Law 1981; National Park Service 1996).

Native Peoples of Point Loma Peninsula

Native peoples of the San Diego area are speakers of Yuman languages and are collectively named 'Kumeyaay' today, although other names such as 'Diegueno', 'Kamia' or 'Ipai-Tipai' have been used also (Fig 1). Years ago, Kumeyaay territorial bands were groups of people living in specific areas related through patrilineal family lineages as well through mythical links. Among the 'Tipai' Kumeyaay — those south of the San Diego River toward the bay — two historic names for villages on the Point Loma peninsula are recorded. 'Totakamalan' was a settlement at Ballast Point while 'Pauipa' was located in the northeastern portion of the peninsula (Moriarity 1977: 130, Luomala 1978: 593: Pourade 1960: 10). Cabrillo's encounter in late September 1542, within the Bay he named 'San Miguel', was with people living nearby who interacted with the Spaniards in a defensive skirmish, with gestures describing other Spaniards fighting with native peoples toward the east. A few 'articles' were given to Tipai greeters but the encounter lasted only for short time periods over a three-day period (Cabrillo Monument Foundation 1999:64-65)

From ancient times, maritime resources from the bay and coast supported a reasonable population, perhaps 5 to 7 persons per square mile for the coastal Kumeyaay (Shipek 1987: 12). As hunters and gatherers but residing in villages, the people had semi-sedentary residence practices and interacted with their mountain and desert-dwelling relatives through trade, marriage and kin connections.

In modern times, Kumeyaay communities and their governments are located in twelve tribal reservations within San Diego County. Connections continue and many traditional practices, crafts, language and social relationships exist within the communities. Several Kumeyaay communities have very successful tribal casinos and other businesses.

Historic Land Uses

Point Loma Landscapes

This grand but narrow landform was part of native Kumeyaay peoples' cultural landscape for residence along its sheltered eastern shoreline and food gathering from its western tidepools and wooded elevations. At prehistoric villages marked by mounded deposits of discarded shell middens and at named native historic settlements now known as La Playa and Roseville, the Kumeyaay utilized peninsular landscapes in specific areas as illustrated by archeological evidence and historical archives. Small, sparse and eroded scatters of shell middens, a discovery of one human burial within Fort Rosecrans in the 1960s, and an occasional isolated stone artifact indicate that the southern area of the peninsula was not intensively used by these people or by earlier indigenous groups. Stands of oaks, toyon, manzanita and lemonade berry did exist until the mid-19th century but were reduced significantly for local leather tanning operations, firewood and construction, or by terrain fires. Cattle grazing on the open peninsula lands would have also altered ground cover and caused animal trails. It is likely, but not documented, that the Spanish Fort Guijarros battery would have necessitated a lookout post on the ridgetop to monitor ships' passage.

Richard Henry Dana describes the appearance of Point Loma in 1834 as follows:

At sunset on the second day [from San Pedro harbor], we had a large and well-wooded headland directly before us, behind which lay the little harbour of San Diego. We were becalmed off this point all night; but the next morning, which was Saturday, the 14th of March, having a good breeze, we stood the point, and, hauling our wind, brought the little harbour, which is rather the outlet of a small river, right before us. Everyone was desirous to get a view of the new place. A chain of hills, beginning at the point (which was on our larboard [left] hand coming in, protected the harbour on the north and west, and ran off into the interior, as far as the eye could reach. On the other sides the land was low and green, but without trees.

Potential Historical Archeology of Early Landscapes

In the 1850s, the promontory was recognized for strategic values by the United States. The southern portion was made a military reservation by Presidential Executive Order in February 1852, followed by a smaller land reservation established for a lighthouse in September 1852. Probably following a previous trail from Ballast Point to the ridge top and southward, an 18-man crew hired by lighthouse construction contractors built an access road during April to May 1854. But it was a difficult road to use because of a series of steep switchbacks, crossing the ridges just west of Ballast Point toward the crest. This road is depicted in an 1855 drawing of Point Loma and its new lighthouse by Major Hartman Bache, Lighthouse Inspector for the West Coast (Fig. 2). At Bache's urging, the first road was replaced only two years later with straighter route, gradually rising from the La Playa settlement rather than Ballast Point, toward the narrow ridge top which it followed for 2 miles to the lighthouse. This new route cost $1,500 to construct (Holland and Law 1981: 44). This road to La Playa settlement served as the major access route well into the 20th century but was a steep climb and took as long as two hours by buggy or wagon. About 1855, Major Bache made a sketch of the treeless land, with its precipitous western edge and slightly eastward sloping terrain, looking northward along the peninsula from the approximate lighthouse location (Fig. 3). Shown in his sketch is Ballast Point anchorage with shoreline buildings in the distance, a section of the ridgetop road, and a small hill where the visitor center now stands.

Early Specific Land Uses

From the 1850s, the magnificent vista observable from the lighthouse area was attractive to local people. For a short period, whale spotters used the vantage point to identify whale pods, alerting hunters at the Ballast Point whaling station. In 1855, four Utah men were granted a 15 year lease by the San Diego Board of Supervisors "to open and work a Coal Mine" on Point Loma (Lockwood 1964). During 1856-57, the 'San Diego Coal Company' attempted to develop the coal veins but without success and the company leaders returned to Salt Lake City in November 1857. Although included within federal lands, the shaft of the "Mormon Coal Mine" remained open until 1960 when the location was developed for Atlas missile testing facilities, now used by the San Diego City Waste Water Treatment Plant.

Excursions and visits to the lighthouse were made by San Diego citizens who drove buggies or wagons up the 1857 road for 'one of the most beautiful drives in the world, to those who enjoy the cool, bracing breezes' (see Law, Jackson and others 1993: 15). Some lighthouse families kept sheep, cattle and horses, and small garden plots near the buildings but by the 1870's, the vegetation along the ridge crest was '.... very meager, consisting of low, scrubby sagebrush', probably because of the impacts from livestock (see Law, Jackson and others 1993: 16).

With abandonment of the 1854 lighthouse replaced by the lower facility completed in 1891, informal visitation continued but vandalism and unauthorized removal of outbuilding materials increased. Unsightly refuse such as broken glass and other trash became a concern of military officers. In 1903, a brush fire ignited by visitors took soldiers from Fort Rosecrans two days to suppress. By 1906, vandalism was mitigated by an exterior and interior whitewash coat and military families were housed in the lighthouse. In 1910, the entrance road received a decomposed granite gravel surface to improve it for military and visitors. In 1913, a commanding officer proposed repairing the building for use as a military radio facility. In the same year, President Wilson signed a proclamation designating one-half acre as the Cabrillo National Monument but military use of the structure and its locality continued (Law, Jackson and others 1993: 19). At this time, only the concrete rain catchment basin and cistern remained as related features (Fig.4).

Along the western ocean terraces of the peninsula, a road leading to the lower Point Loma lighthouse was in place and shown on a 1904 USGS map. This road, later known as Gatchell Road, was improved during World War I when Army coastal searchlights and a powerhouse were built. Thus, the western portion of the monument became more intensively utilized and altered for coastal defense and for lighthouse operation. The current descending Cabrillo Road connecting main ridge road (State Route 209) to the coastal terraces was constructed after 1936. This portion of the park is accessible by trails along the coastal terraces to the tidepools but there are no good footpaths toward the peninsular ridge top.

Along the eastern or bayside lands, to provide access to searchlight facilities, a bladed road — named Meyler Road, then Sylvester Road, and now Bayside Trail — was constructed in 1918-1919 by Army contractors. Originally, this road terminated at the 1920 Billy Goat Point base-end stations, but a trail connecting this location to Fort Rosecrans was widened later for vehicle use. Minor roadways from Sylvester Road to three 1920s coast artillery sighting points were visible during World War II when Battery Bluff was constructed. Aerial photographs from 1944 and 1953 show trails to Battery Bluff from Sylvester Road, and linking this road with the main crest paved road via secondary ridges where the visitor center now stands. Since the eastern portion of the monument is composed of steep ridges and deeply cut drainages, only one small beach, no tidepools, or watercraft landing spots, traversing this area prior to 1918 would have been difficult (Fig. 5).

By the 1920s, the lighthouse was a military radio station and later, a tourist destination. In 1931, the lighthouse was "completely renovated, painted and repaired', prompting the local Army commander to state "Naturally, the army takes pride in the appearance of this historic structure...." (Law, Jackson and others 1993: 21). Informal visitor use continued into the 1930s.

In 1933, a National Park Service official visited the location for the first time and recommended restoration of grounds and the structure. This official completed an inspection report in September 1934 which noted that the concrete watershed and two brick-lined cisterns had 'crumbled away' and the lighthouse was again in poor, unoccupied condition.

Between 1935 and 1937, National Park Service architects supervised lighthouse historic restoration, park landscaping of surrounding grounds which included existing State-built stone retaining walls, and construction of a new garage with detached restroom. A concessionaire operated a 'tea room' in the lighthouse and attempted to furnish its rooms with historic artifacts. Later, a larger parking area was constructed from a natural flat area to the southwest from the lighthouse to ease vehicle traffic (Law, Jackson and others 1993: 29). By the 1940s, the appearance and land uses had greatly changed around this small developed public park with its historic building, surrounded by military facilities and functions.

In 1941, wartime needs for security and strategic uses again changed the function of the lighthouse and its locality. A wooden observation tower and a two room concrete subterranean observation station were built a short distance south of the historic structure on the margins of the former parking area. Camouflage paint on the lighthouse substantially altered the appearance and character of the structure, then used as a Navy signal station. Construction of Battery Ashburn at this time resulted in piles of excavated earth and road paving materials on the entrance road (Law, Jackson and others 1993: 30).

Following WWII, the monument was increased in size, and public programs expanded. Custodian Donald Robinson was appointed Superintendent in 1956 and the unit began to develop its own management directions. By the 1960s, its neighbors included various Navy program facilities and the City of San Diego's sewer treatment plant (Fig. 6). A one-story visitor center with administrative offices, auditorium, enclosed viewing and sales area and restrooms was dedicated in August 1966. By the 1980s, Park Service management plans, environmental analyses studies, an administrative history, historic structure report on the lighthouse, resources management plan, and specific cultural resources studies had been completed.

Land uses, when considered as cumulative, include the original ridge crest road route with late 19th —early 20th century secondary roads to coast artillery emplacements and a coastal terrace lighthouse. By 1920, Gatchell and Meyler roads connected on eastern and western sides of the peninsula to military installations to the north of the monument area. Foot-trails can be seen in historic photos connecting some roadways to artillery base-end triangulation stations and to the 1942 Point Loma Battery with its clustered gun emplacements and bunkers. Alignments of security fences are visible on historic military photographs. Exotic vegetation species have been planted since the 1920s.

Thus, sequences of large-scale ridgetop terrain alternations for major coastal batteries, roadways, parking lots and buried utility systems for military and civilian functions have resulted in discontinuous preserved areas of natural topography — slopes and coastal terraces — covered by native and introduced vegetation. Sparse historical artifactual resources around the lighthouse, at existing coast artillery emplacements of WWI and WWII, and isolated artifacts such metal or lumber relating to military activities remain today as historical archeological resources.

Archeological Materials in Park Collections

Archives, photographs, fine arts, historic objects and furnishings, natural history specimens, and archeological materials compose the monument's curatorial resources (See National Park Service 1999). Prehistoric artifacts are limited to three grinding rock slabs showing concave trough-like surfaces, worn by horizontal milling activities and five loaf-shaped handstones with convex worn surfaces, Regretfully, no provenience (place of origin) information is available for most objects. One handstone was found in 1964 near a documented prehistoric site along Gatchell Road by historian F. Ross Holland and archeologist Dr. Paul Ezell. One grinding slab and one handstone are on exhibit at the visitor center museum.

Historical artifacts found during archeological work are more numerous but are limited to building materials such as sun-dried adobe bricks, baked flooring tile fragments and industrially manufactured fired clay bricks. During the 1991 lighthouse restoration project, one common red brick and one light-colored 'firebrick' were found in earthen fill near exterior northeast and southeast corners of the structure. The firebrick was stamped EXCELSIOR which indicates a manufacture by Pacific Clay Products of Los Angeles, between 1921 —1942 (Gurke 1987; 232). A reddish-orange brick stamped USMP was found during the archeological project at Battery Point Loma in 1984 but has not been identified as to manufacturer. Adobe brick fragments and floor tile fragments in the collection are enigmatic. A few are clearly from the Fort Guijarros area but were collected and placed in the monument's collections before Fort excavation projects were begun.

One tile fragment is said to have been found during lighthouse tower restoration work in 1981. The use of square 'Spanish Tiles' in the lighthouse is strongly suggested by a comment from a Lighthouse Board inspector who was told in 1855 that the structure's basement floor was paved with '...tile from an old Mexican fort nearby'. This reuse of Fort Guijarros tiles was covered over by a concrete floor installed in 1880 (Holland and Law 1981: 116). The floor was lowered six inches during the 1930s restoration work, thus removing both the original 'tiles' and the 1880 concrete layer.

Six examples of adobe bricks were collected from trenching operations in May 1982 southeast from the lighthouse. At a depth of 18 inches to 24 inches, about 15 adobe bricks were found with 'chicken wire' and unidentified bird feathers. Informal comparisons were made between these examples and others known from San Diego "Old Town" buildings and Fort Guijarros.

Although there are no paleontological specimens in the collections, fossils of Cephalopod 'ammonite' group are known by some researchers to be embedded within the outcroppings of Point Loma Formation. With the exception of stone grinding slabs and handstones, no other Native American archeological or ethnographic artifacts are present in the monument collections. There are no materials conforming to the definitions of human remains, sacred objects, patrimony or funerary objects in the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act.

Previous Archeological Research in the Point Loma Locality

Between 1902 and 1920, three definite archeological resources on the Point Loma Peninsula were observed and recorded by pioneering University of California archeologists Nels C. Nelson and Howard O. Welty (see Kroeber 1925). One large shell 'midden' mound site (now labeled as SDi-48) was observed along the earlier northern shoreline of Ballast Point. Nelson described this 'refuse heap' as 400 feet long, at least 50 ft. wide and 5 ft. thick. Nelson noted that a battery of 'small guns' had been constructed on the mound as part of Fort Rosecrans' emplacements. Two prehistoric midden sites recorded by Nelson and Welty along the shoreline north of La Playa area were later investigated by Joan Jensen, then Chair of the History Department at California Western University, in the 1960s (Morairity 1977: 253-4).

During the 1930s and 1950s, geographer George Carter visited many localities in the San Diego area, including Point Loma (1957: 272-277). Along the peninsular ridge top where erosion and roadways revealed open soil, Carter noted scatters of felsite flakes, small hearths ringed with cobbles, small patches of chione, pecten and oyster shells, but only sparse artifacts such as grinding tools, pottery fragments, or arrowpoints. These few cultural materials were seen along the ridgetop from military grant boundary southward toward the historic lighthouse. Paleontological materials in the form of a fragment of camelopus jaw fossil was found in the early 1940s within Fort Rosecrans (Hertlein and Grant 1944: 40). In 1962, a flexed burial of Native American human remains was discovered during road grading in Fort Rosecrans (Moriarity 1977: 255). Some shell fragments, a modified hand stone, and fragments of a large slab grinding stone were found with the remains which appeared to date between 5000-6000 years ago. Apparently, the human remains were left in place (see Overton 1986:208-209).

In 1959, archeologist Claude Warren, then of the University of California at Los Angeles, conducted the first terrain survey of the Monument, at the request of F. Ross Holland, Park Service historian who had been stationed at the park from that year to 1964. Warren's one-day survey in December did not locate archeological resources and the field methodology was not described.

Discoveries of peninsula off-shore underwater archeological or historical objects included recovery of isolated historic objects, building materials and faunal remains as scattered items along Ballast Point, recorded as site SDi-8897 (Pettus 1982). A small sandstone stone bowl mortar and a spherical stone artifact were found in 50 feet of water, due west of Old Point Loma Lighthouse, recorded as site Sdi-8669 (Hudson 1976).

Terrain Assessment Surveys and Excavations

In early 1975, Park Service temporary archeologist David S. Johnson conducted an archeological survey of about 50 acres newly added to the eastern side of the monument. Johnson's survey coverage included hiking traverses in a criss-cross pattern over the steep slopes and narrow coastal terraces. This project was completed in less than two days but did not include observations on military structures or features located in this area. The project was described on an Archeological Clearance format, issued by the Service's Western Archeological Center at Tucson as Clearance O89-CABR on January 29, 1975.

In June 1975, Park Service Archeologist Roger Kelly conducted further terrain clearance surveys for proposed nature trails, including one using a former military road within eastern parcel, as an addendum to Clearance O89-CABR. Twelve debris 'dumps' to be removed were also visited which were separate, small piles of lumber and solid waste such as concrete building materials and metal objects. Further identification of these materials was not made.

At this time, Superintendent Tucker and Park Service Regional Office Historic Preservation staff proposed preparation of a summary report regarding the monument's historic and prehistoric archeological resources. The services of Dr. James Moriarity, University of San Diego, were obtained through a purchase order to conduct field work and historical research during 1975-76, resulting in the completion of "Cabrillo National Monument; A Physical and Cultural Overview" in 1977. His synthesis utilized personal knowledge and professional work over many years in the San Diego area as well as expertise from other leading archeologists, historians, and military experts. Report chapters included specific environmental characteristics of the Peninsula, prehistoric cultural occupation of the San Diego Bay and Point Loma area, historical land uses and military occupation, and an inventory of physical cultural and historical resources.

In 1976, Service Historical Architect Kenneth Keane visited the Monument to record historic military structures for the Service's 'List of Classified Structures', a nationwide initiative. He made field visits to most structures and produced architectual descriptions with photographs. Near some of the features in the eastern parcel, he photographed lumber and other materials possibly related to the WWII operations at this location which had been observed in 1975 by Kelly and Moriarity.

In 1977, archeological terrain inspection for expansion of the Monument's Maintenance facility was done, based on Johnson and Moriarity's negative reports.

In 1981, Archeological Clearance Number (072-81-CABR) was issued for ground-disturbing activities necessary for a Navy Erosion Control project along Gatchell Road, within the western portion of the Monument. Potential archeological resources visited and discussed by Moriarity for this area were field-checked by Archeologist Kelly.

Also in 1981, a contractor under Park Service supervision conducted an historic preservation project at the historic lighthouse. During this work, concrete trough-shaped rain catchments installed in the late 1930s were revealed during exposure of below-grade exterior surfaces of the stone walls. Archeologist Roger Kelly, using information gained from a former Park Service employee who had retired to Trinidad, California, accomplished an investigation and revealing of these troughs. Since moisture levels in the Lighthouse basement had been a problem since the 1930s, documentation of these unexpected troughs was necessary.

In early May, 1982, Navy contractors excavating a narrow utilities trench through the western edge of the Whale Overlook parking area, about 150 feet south of the lighthouse, revealed a row of about 15 adobe bricks at 18 to 24 inches depth below asphalt paving. This single course row was found with a deposit of white beach sand, only visible on one side of the machine-dug trench, and was monitored by Ranger Brett Jones. In addition, unexpected finding of pieces of 'chicken wire mesh' and 'chicken feathers' near the bricks make this discovery a mystery. Further, an older buried pipeline was encountered at about the same depth. While this area south of the lighthouse was the location of a large wooden observation tower and two concrete command bunkers during World War II. Later, in the 1960s, large quantities of fill earth from construction of the City of San Diego's Water Treatment Plan construction were used to enlarge the parking lot (see Fig 6). The adobe bricks were included in the park's museum collections.

In 1983, Clearance Number 016-83-CABR was issued for installation of buried utilities by Navy contractors to supply Park Service maintenance facilities.

In 1984, Clearance Number 007-84-CABR was issued for uncovering WWII gun emplacement (Point Loma Battery) for preventative maintenance. This Battery was constructed quickly in January 1942 as a four 155mm-gun emplacement, with accompanying gun crew facilities. In June and August of 1984, Youth Conservation Corps crews exposed most of one poured concrete circular ring upon which the WWI field cannon were positioned. After removal of the field guns, the battery rings were filled with local dirt in 1968 but natural erosion revealed some of the structure in 1981. Removal of this material did reveal wooden camouflage net frame fragments, burlap pieces, and 1945 Los Angeles newspaper pieces (see Jones and Overton 1984).

In 1987, Clearance Number 070-CABR was performed to document 'no effect' upon cultural resources by a proposed widening project for Gatchell Road near the City of San Diego Waste Water facility.

In November 1989, Brian Smith and Associates, an archeological consulting firm, conducted a field survey for the City of San Diego along the Gatchell Road to the Waste Water facility. A 'record search' was done at San Diego Museum of Man and the Information Center at San Diego State University. An Federal Antiquities Permit was issued for this activity (Smith and Associates 1989). Several prehistoric midden sites noted by Moriarity were revisited.

In December 1990, Mooney and Associates also performed field survey along the Gatchell Road segment leading to the City Water facility. The following site numbers were assigned to ten historical and prehistoric archeological sites (SDi=San Diego County, number indicates unique site identification within the County):

SDi 11,930 53x15m disturbed shell scatter, no visible artifacts
SDi 11,931 21x9m disturbed shell scatter, no visible artifacts
SDi 11,932H 27x16m WWII historic feature (searchlight)
SDi 11,933 46x31m disturbed shell scatter, no visible artifacts
SDI 11,934 30x25m disturbed shell scatter, no visible artifacts
SDi 11,935 75x70m disturbed shell and lithic artifact scatter
SDi 11,936H 118x28m WWII Point Loma Battery
SDi 11,937 123x54m disturbed shell and lithic artifact scatter
SDi 11,938 143x15m disturbed shell and lithic artifact scatter
SDi 11,939 42x18m disturbed shell scatter

In 1999, Archeologist Kelly performed a series of test excavations near the lighthouse in attempt to locate physical evidence of historic outbuildings. The activity was in support of the historic landscape restoration proposal of the General Management Plan. Ten small hand-dug test pits were excavated as assumed locations for outbuildings such as assistant lighthouse keepers quarters, privy, and picket fence line. No direct evidence of these structures was found but nature of the 1930s landscaping and plant irrigation pipes were encountered, as was natural bedrock in one unit. Other than 1930s water pipes, no artifacts were found. Any artifactural or structural evidence of former outbuildings seems to have been removed during the 1930s grade alternation and landscaping.

In 2000, ASM Affiliates, a cultural resources consulting firm, was contracted by the City of San Diego to perform site evaluation studies at three archeological resources in or near a proposed curve widening project along Gatchell Road (see Reddy and others, 2000). Updated site information sheets for SDi-11,935, 11,936H, and 11,937 were completed by ASM Affiliates who suggested that sites SDi-11,935 and 11,937 were likely not eligible to the National Register of Historic Places. Site integrity and potential for information was apparently lacking due to erosion and impacts from Gatchell Road. Site SDi-11,936H documentation was updated with the recommendation of eligibility to the National Register for historical archeological resource values.

The California State Historic Preservation Officer concurred with these recommendations on August 32, 2000. The Reddy report contains concise summaries of research design approach, field and analytical methods used, and detailed descriptions of three recorded sites, including the military structures and features at two locations. Formal "Primary Records" were completed for each site investigated and illustrated with photographs and site maps. A Federal Antiquities Permit was issued for this work.

In August 2001, Archeologist Kelly conducted a re-survey of the ca. 50-acre east-side parcel to bring older terrain inspections up to current Park Service standards of site condition evaluation. Only archeological materials associated with historic military land uses were observed. illegal entry into one of the paired Billy Goat Point base end stations (on both monument and Navy lands) has resulted in vandalism. In 1993, one structure had been cleaned and secured against entry by the San Diego Urban Corps but the same structure has suffered vandalism since that project. A second station remains secured against entry. The 1942 Battery Bluff was recorded as an historical archeological site as well as an architectural resource. While two poured concrete gun emplacements are in fair in partially buried condition, wooden elements and a frame box structure have deteriorated since first photographic documentation in 1976. A few surface artifacts and a dug-out feature are other archeological resources. An oral historical account documents the military activities at this location during WWII (Overton 1986).

Two 1920 base end stations were also visited by Kelly. Both may be entered through loose steel shutters. Their condition is good although 1995 graffiti is visible in one building. Fragments of window glass and milled lumber are scattered on slopes near these structures. These discarded materials seem to be post-WWII abandonment. About 150 feet southwest from the 'old Maintenance Building', a possible stone quarrying area was observed as an unnatural circular area in a south-facing slope, near the Park Service facility. Its nearness to the 1850s lighthouse may be coincidental, however. An earlier segment of the former 'Humpheys Road' was traced for several hundred feet paralleling the current roadway but at a lower contour line. Two poured concrete features were seen as features of this long-abandoned military roadway.

Condition of Archeological Sites

An intensive inventory and assessment of historical and archeological resources on Navy and Coast Guard lands at Point Loma indicated that about 25 prehistoric sites were visible in the early 1980s for professional documentation (see Rower and Roth 1982: Table 1). In addition, the eight recorded sites listed above within the monument and those prehistoric midden deposits located in recent years beneath modern military developments indicate a minimum number of places on the peninsula utilized by native peoples through time (see subsequent Chapters in this report). Researchers Rower and Roth noted that moderate to severe erosion and construction impacts are characteristics of all sites documented during their inventory project. The eight known prehistoric sites within the monument have sustained impacts from ocean exposure, run-off and sheet wash as well as road construction of Gatchell Road and earlier routes. All of these sites are located on ocean-facing slopes and coastal terraces of the monument's western area, indicating past cultural activities along a tide-pool near shore zone. Intensive terrain survey thoughout the monument has not revealed additional prehistoric archeological resources. Coverage by systematic archeological surveys may be said to cover 90% of current monument terrain.

Two sites originally recorded by Brian Smith and Associates (SDi-11,935 and 11,937) were investigated by ASM Associates but were determined as not eligible to the National Register of Historic Places due to loss of integrity and scientific values. The remaining 6 prehistoric sites are in fair condition, protected somewhat by vegetation. Ground cover and native shrubs should be encouraged to reduce weathering and pedestrian travel near the fragile site surfaces. Two historic architectual and historical archeological sites (SDi-11,936 and 11,932) are of military origin and are in good condition as buried features, which reduces weathering. Site SDi-11,936 (Battery Point Loma) is a contributing property to the Historic District for historical archeological values at local and national levels. The Battery Bluff site (no trinomial number) is in fair condition but elements of that emplacement are in poor condition as noted. All monument archeological resources are included in the Park Service Archeological Sites Management Inventory System (ASMIS), a park systemwide automated database which includes 'poor, fair, and good' site condition definitions for prehistoric and historical archeological resources.


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Last Updated: 06-Apr-2005