KING, Chester

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Chester King

KING, Chester (b. ), archaeologist specializing in the study of the prehistory of California. King served as President and Vice-president of the Society of California Archaeology. He began studying the archaeology of southern California in 1960 and has continued to study the archaeology and ethnohistory of southern California native peoples until the present. King wrote chapters of the Handbook of North American Indians volume on California produced by the Smithsonian Institution. His PhD dissertation, Evolution of Chumash Society, was selected for publication in a series of 31 outstanding dissertations concerning the archaeology of North American Indians. His writings are frequently referenced, and he is recognized as a leading specialist in the field of California Native American archaeology and ethnohistory.


  • King, Chester. Evolution of Chumash Society: A Comparative Study of Artifacts Used in Social System Maintenance in the Santa Barbara Channel Region Before A.D. 1804 Garland Publishing, New York, 1990
Describes relationship of forms of artifacts used to maintain social relationships to the relationships they maintain and describes and explains changes in the Santa Barbara Channel ornaments as responses to changes in society. Most changes are interpreted as response to growth and differentiation of social subsystems.