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West of the West: Tales from California's Channel Island

Introduced by Joe Walsh of the legendary band The Eagles, and told from the view point of the native people who've inhabited and experienced the Channel Islands, the three-part documentary series WEST OF THE WEST: TALES FROM CALIFORNIA'S CHANNEL ISLANDS explores the history, geography, archaeology and biology of the eight islands off the California coast. Through interviews with a range of experts - including academics, archeologists, historians and natives - WEST OF THE WEST: TALES FROM CALIFORNIA'S CHANNEL ISLANDS provides an engaging portrait of each of the islands intimate personal history. Rather than painting a "linear history," the film presents nine major stories along with several shorter segments about the islands. Episodes include: "First People" "First People" contains five stories detailing the islands' human history. It includes the story of the Chumash tribe, the first people who lived on the Channel Islands from 13,000 years ago through the 1800s. It also recounts how the California coast was explored by the Spanish in 1542, long before the English arrived in Massachusetts; and how the Channel Islands were once located next to San Diego, but over the millennia, plate tectonics 'rotated' them to their current location off Santa Barbara. "Settlers" "Settlers" features four tales on how the Channel Islands were settled by people of European descent. One account includes Tim Vail, a fourth generation rancher on Santa Rosa Island who shares a personal history of his family's involvement there while lamenting the end of their cattle operation after a century. Also chronicled are the maritime dangers posed by the Channel Islands and its waters holding the wrecks of more than 500 vessels. Catalina, the most widely known of the Channel Islands and the only one still privately owned, was developed by William Wrigley Jr., who purchased the island sight unseen in 1919. Its glory years of movie stars, the Chicago Cubs and big band dancing, as well as its struggles to stay relevant today are chronicled by Wrigley's great-grand-daughter Alison Rusack. "Return" The third episode, "Return," features four segments, one of which includes the struggle between environmentalists and Channel Islands National Park and Nature Conservancy naturalists who endeavor to restore the islands to their native state. It also charts the relationship between Dr. Carey Stanton, who owned Santa Cruz Island, and musician Joe Walsh. They struck up an unusual bond that led to Walsh putting on an Eagle's concert to help raise money for the Nature Conservancy's purchase of Santa Cruz Island. Also included is an archeological discovery related to the "Lone Woman," the inspiration behind the Island of the Blue Dolphins and the Chumash tradition of annual timely voyages to their ancestral home on Santa Cruz Island.

Episodes

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