Talk:Channel Islands (California)

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Inhabitation question[edit]

They are uninhabited (not counting military personnels, which are not permanent settlers)? --Menchi 07:19, 5 Apr 2004 (UTC)

Catalina has two cities, Two Harbors and Avalon. Also the areas of the National Park have park rangers that live on the island I believe. The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk • contribs) 23:16, 16 March 2005.


Why are they called Channel Islands, since they are not in a channel? The preceding unsigned comment was added by Tarquin (talk • contribs) 04:26, 10 July 2005.

I am just taking a very wild guess, but I do know that there is a very deep "channel" between the islands and the mainland. That might be the source for the name. BlankVerse 08:04, 13 July 2005 (UTC)
There should be a geology section that discusses their formation. It would be a good place for the answer to this question. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 15:26, 17 September 2007 (UTC)

Mexican Claims[edit]

Hi there, is it true that Mexico have/has claims over ths Channel Islands?

I've heard talks about this recently, In Ciudad Juarez, Chihuahua there is a Mexican History Fair going on, where a Peruvian historian Ricardo Melgar stated that Seven Islands were taken away by the U.S for Military Strategic Reasons during WWII and Mexico has not claimed them due to fear of worsenin bilateral relation. This will sure start another controversy in Mexico in the following days. The Islands that supposelly belong to Mexico are San Miguel, Santa Rosa, Santa Cruz, Santa Bárbara, San Nicolás, Santa Catarina and San Clemente. The link below is one of the news released in Mexico on the 19th of October, 2007 article is ion Spanish. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 07:23, 20 October 2007 (UTC)

Military use[edit]

I know that most of the Channel Islands (all but Catalina) were under control of the military during WWII. I was told that the rabbits on Santa Barbara Island were released there during WWII so that the observers on the island would have fresh meat if they were cut off from the mainland for any length of time. I assume the single quonset hut on SBI is also of WWII vintage. BlankVerse 23:15, 10 December 2005 (UTC)

I thought that Catalina was at least partially under military control. -Willmcw 23:52, 10 December 2005 (UTC)
Yes, it apparently was also completely under military control. Apparently some residents were allowed to stay, to provide services to the military personel, but the few civilian residents allowed to stay had to have permits from the USCG to travel to and from the island. Most people had to leave and tourism was forbidden, I get the impression that all non-essential civilian travel was halted. Thats all according to this website. I'm reading up on it now so I can make the section more accurate. Thanks for pointing this out BlankVerse and Willmcw.
PS I'm leaving for the weekend. Feel free to make the changes yourselves (as if that needs to be said), I'm getting this all from the web anyhow. If not I'll do it when I get back. Try to reference your infor though please, to many articles are being written without references, its a travesty. --Brentt 00:01, 11 December 2005 (UTC)

One more thing: I seem to recall, from my visits to Catalina when I was young that Catalina's military history goes back farther than WWII. I remember my dad and a friend having a discussion when we were driving around the island one day that there was actually an outpost that dates from the civil war. Of course a discussion overheard when I was 8 years old isn't a reliable source, but if anyone knows anything about it, or can find out, it might be interesting. More about the natives would be neat too. (What kind of boats did they use btw? I won't even dare take my dad's bayliner there, I can't imagine making regular trips in something even less substantial.) --Brentt 00:12, 11 December 2005 (UTC)

I can imagine WW I, and possibly even the Spanish-American War, but I think that any even remote connection to the American Civil War is highly unlikely (but I've been proved wrong on my assumptions before). BlankVerse 08:48, 11 December 2005 (UTC)
Fort Point, at the Golden Gate, was built for the Civil War. OTOH, Drum Barracks says it is the "only major American Civil War landmark in Southern California". At the time, Los Angeles was of very minor importance compared to S.F. I do remember reading about some WWI military activity. (further discussion along these lines might be better held at Talk:Santa Catalina Island, California). -Willmcw 09:56, 11 December 2005 (UTC)
I don't think that it was a fort that was involved in the civil war, it was just a military facility that dates from the civil war. It probably was not involved in the fighting of course if its true. But a military facility isn't so far-fetched. Its probably insignificant either way, and if it is interesting would be better on the Santa Catalina Island article as Willmcw pointed out. --Brentt 10:16, 12 December 2005 (UTC)
The tomol boats used by Chumash and Tongva tribes were the most sophisticated technology used by North American Indians, according to one major anthropologist. Modern folks with courage have used kayaks, etc. Thanks for the input on military uses of the islands. -Willmcw 00:23, 11 December 2005 (UTC)
I know that there is a non-mainstream theory that the Chumash got their boat designs from Polynesians that had crossed the Pacific. BlankVerse 08:45, 11 December 2005 (UTC)
Yes, and of course another, slightly more mainstream theory has an early migration along the Pacific coast of ice-locked North America, partly confirmed by the 10,000 year old remains found on Santa Rosa and a southern island. What I find most surprising is the material that they used—redwood lumber. Where do redwoods grow in SoCal? Nowhere. The trunks would just float down the coast from the north and wash up on the beach, like manna. That was a nice arrangement. -Willmcw 09:56, 11 December 2005 (UTC)

Non-native species[edit]

This article talks briefly about a few of the native species. I think that it also should briefly cover the problems of the non-native goats, pigs, grasses, etc. BlankVerse 08:45, 11 December 2005 (UTC)

A problem with this article is that so many topics are covered in the individual island articles. Likewise, the island articles often have to repeat the same information. There's no good way around it. As the "master article", perhaps it's justifiable to have here snippets or summaries from all the island articles on a particular topic even if that is duplication. -Willmcw 10:00, 11 December 2005 (UTC)
That's all I wanted was some brief discussion that said all of the islands have had some impact from non-native species, and in several cases there have been steps taken to eliminate (goats on San Clemente) or reduce (Bison on Santa Catalina) the impact of the non-native species. BlankVerse 14:55, 11 December 2005 (UTC)


From a discussion with Will Beback regarding what county Santa Barbara Island is in, I realized that fact is not always clear. So I looked up each island on the Geographic Names Database:

To anyone familiar with Southern California geography, this is really unintuitive. Like, why is San Clemente Island, which is at the same latitute as Oceanside or Encinitas, assigned to Los Angeles county? szyslak (t, c, e) 04:30, 3 November 2006 (UTC)

Thanks for finding that. -Will Beback 07:20, 3 November 2006 (UTC)
If I remember correctly, what is now Orange County was once part of LA County (which is not mentioned in the Wikipedia Orange County, California article). Even Avalon, California has a latitude that would put it into San Diego County, if that was the main criteria, but since Catalina Island is physical closer to LA County, that was probably the reason it ended up in that county. The largely uninhabited San Clemente Island may have just been lumped together with Catalina in the beginning.
It would be interesting to see if documentation could be found showing why Catalina Island stayed with LA County when Orange County was created. Did the residents of Avalon have any say in the matter? Perhaps because most of the commerce and transportation links are through San Pedro and Long Beach, Catalina Island was kept in LA County. BlankVerse 12:42, 5 November 2006 (UTC)

Please check article - anon IP unsourced edits[edit]

Please see history with a time just prior to this post. Ronbo76 17:15, 28 January 2007 (UTC)

It seems rather silly to me to go thorugh and just change sq. kilometers to sq. miles (but then we keep getting anon IPs and n00bs that convert American English to British English, or vice versa, so I'm not surprised that it was done). What (talk · contribs) should have done is changed the table so that it had both measurements. It also looks like they might have messed up the conversion for Santa Barbara Island based on the data in the Wikipedia article, but that should be checked with an outside source. BlankVerse 13:52, 29 January 2007 (UTC)

Channel Island Legends and Mysteries.[edit]

I am researching the origins of white settlement of Southern California and found an interesting account of a mysterious human skull that was found in the Channel Islands back in the early 19th century.

The story was published in the (now defunct) Los Angeles Herald as a first person narrative essay about early colonization of the area.

Legend has it that a alien-like scull with double rows of teeth was kept on Santa Cruz Island by the Chumach Indians at the time of early Spanish Settlement. I'm not sure if it was an ancient fossilized skull or more recent to that era.

This account is documented and I suspect somewhere in the archives of the Huntington Library (San Marino) there may be some answers.

Can anyone help verify this account? I would like to learn more about this mysterious artifact and what became of it. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 13:35, 1 March 2011 (UTC)

Irrelevant book reference[edit]

The section 'Military use' has the following sentence: San Nicolas has had a book written about the indigenous peoples living on the island. It is called Island of the Blue Dolphins, which seems irrelevant to me and should probably be removed. Can someone who actually know about this area more close-up please decide if there's any particular reason to mention this book, whether it should be removed or not, or perhaps expand or move to a more relevant section. -- Katana (talk) 20:02, 26 May 2013 (UTC)

Archaeology question[edit]

Currently, the History section states, " Archaeological sites on the island provide a unique and invaluable record..." but doesn't say which island. If anybody knows which island (or islands) the sites are on, it should be added. JDZeff (talk) 06:19, 26 November 2013 (UTC)

Probably all of the islands. I know for certain San Nicolas and San Miguel. San Nicolas Island was was the most intriguing, due to that island's bizarre history in the first half of the 19th century. The last I heard, though, archaeology on the island was halted by some band of Mission Indians that claimed next-of-kin to the now-extinct Nicoleño people, which can never be proven nor disproven, so they got their way... Firejuggler86 (talk) 22:11, 29 March 2021 (UTC)

Name of the islands[edit]

I've always heard of them being referred to as just the "Channel Islands". What's the source for the name "Channel Islands of California" that's used in this article? The park for example is called Channel Islands National Park. There's one list related to the islands, List of California Channel Islands wildlife. --Marc Kupper|talk 09:39, 3 December 2013 (UTC)

Living as I do in Southern California, I agree that they're most commonly known simply as the Channel Islands. However, there are two problems: first, they aren't in a channel, they define it making them barrier islands, not channel islands. Second, and more important, calling them that would cause confusion with the more famous set of Channel Islands in the English Channel.JDZeff (talk) 01:23, 2 September 2014 (UTC)
The of California appears to be there to distinguish from the other Channel Islands. As the islands are commonly known as Channel Islands it seems a better disambig title would be Channel Islands (California). As to the barrier island bit: I agree that their name is a technical misnomer, however that is the name they are known by and common names often defy scientific logic. Vsmith (talk) 01:35, 2 September 2014 (UTC)

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Requested move of Channel Islands to a dab page[edit]

At Channel Islands § Requested move 22 October 2018, I requested input on moving Channel Islands to something like Channel Islands (Europe) and making Channel Islands a dab page. Contributions to the discussion would be welcome. —[AlanM1(talk)]— 17:11, 25 October 2018 (UTC)