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The great fires : Indian burning and catastrophic forest fire patterns of the Oregon Coast Range, 1491-1951

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dc.contributor.advisor Peters, Kurt M.
dc.creator Zybach, Bob
dc.date.accessioned 2011-02-25T22:10:29Z
dc.date.available 2011-02-25T22:10:29Z
dc.date.copyright 2003-07-08
dc.date.issued 2003-07-08
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/1957/20240
dc.description Graduation date: 2004 en_US
dc.description.abstract The purpose of this study is to examine the relationship between land management practices of Indian communities prior to contact with Europeans and the nature or character of subsequent catastrophic forest fires in the Oregon Coast Range. The research focus is spatial and temporal patterns of Indian burning across the landscape from 1491 until 1848, and corresponding patterns of catastrophic fire events from 1849 until 1951. Archival and anthropological research methods were used to obtain early surveys, maps, drawings, photographs, interviews, Geographic Information Systems (GIS) inventories, eyewitness accounts and other sources of evidence that document fire history. Data were tabulated, mapped, and digitized as new GIS layers for purposes of comparative analysis. An abundance of historical evidence was found to exist that is useful for reconstructing precontact vegetation patterns and human burning practices in western Oregon. The data also proved useful for documenting local and regional forest fire histories. Precontact Indians used fire to produce landscape patterns of trails, patches, fields, woodlands, forests and grasslands that varied from time to time and place to place, partly due to demographic, cultural, topographic, and climatic differences that existed throughout the Coast Range. Native plants were systematically managed by local Indian families in even-aged stands, usually dominated by a single species, throughout all river basins of the study area. Oak, filberts, camas, wapato, tarweed, yampah, strawberries, huckleberries, brackenfern, nettles, and other plants were raised in select areas by all known tribes, over long periods of time. However, current scientific and policy assumptions regarding the abundance and extent of precontact western Oregon old-growth forests may be in error. This study demonstrates a high rate of coincidence between the land management practices of precontact Indian communities, and the causes, timing, boundaries, severity, and extent of subsequent catastrophic forest fires in the same areas. Information provided by this study should be of value to researchers, wildlife managers, forest landowners, and others with an interest in the history and resources of the Oregon Coast Range. en_US
dc.language.iso en_US en_US
dc.relation Oregon Explorer en_US
dc.subject.lcsh Indians of North America -- Fire use -- Oregon, Western en_US
dc.subject.lcsh Indians of North America -- Fire use -- Coast Ranges en_US
dc.subject.lcsh Burning of land -- Oregon, Western -- History en_US
dc.subject.lcsh Burning of land -- Coast Ranges -- History en_US
dc.subject.lcsh Forest fires -- Oregon, Western -- History en_US
dc.subject.lcsh Forest fires -- Coast Ranges -- History en_US
dc.title The great fires : Indian burning and catastrophic forest fire patterns of the Oregon Coast Range, 1491-1951 en_US
dc.type Thesis/Dissertation en_US
dc.degree.name Doctor of Philosophy (Ph. D.) in Environmental Sciences en_US
dc.degree.level Doctoral en_US
dc.degree.discipline Interdisciplinary Studies en_US
dc.degree.grantor Oregon State University en_US
dc.contributor.committeemember Taylor, George
dc.contributor.committeemember Cromack, Kermit
dc.contributor.committeemember Twohy, Cynthia
dc.contributor.committeemember Smith, Court
dc.contributor.committeemember Ford, Jesse
dc.contributor.committeemember Brauner, David
dc.description.digitization File scanned at 300 ppi (Monochrome, 256 Grayscale, 24-bit Color) using Capture Perfect 3.0.82 on a Canon DR-9080C in PDF format. CVista PdfCompressor 4.0 was used for pdf compression and textual OCR. en_US

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