We seek grants to continue opening the records of Humboldt’s post-1960 countercultural new settlers, and locals who joined them in building new businesses, organizations and ways of living. HAPA maintains a collection representing five decades of treasures, available for education, research and grant writing.
The Humboldt Area Peoples Archive was founded in early November 2016 by retired Humboldt State University (now Cal-Poly Humboldt) archivist Edie Butler and artist Scott Holmquist, at Holmquist’s urging. Holmquist soon recruited Southern Humboldt community leader Douglas Fir, geographer Dr. Dominic Corva and Northern Humboldt activist Richard Salzman. It became a 501(c)(3) nonprofit in late 2017.
Our mission is to collect and conserve documents for public use related to activism, business, and art for social justice, peace, and the environment, as well as histories of counterculturists, back-to-the-landers, and cannabis growers’ lives in and around Humboldt, Trinity and Mendocino, California counties. With an emphasis on the late 1960s to present.
In addition to preserving the records, we seek to promote wider knowledge of the recent past that built Northern California lives, arts, institutions and politics for greater equality, peace and the protection of our planet.
We accept materials from organizations and individuals. We accept funding.
Your history in good hands! Edie Butler loading the first boxes of archives to storage in Arcata, 2016.
Founder and Treasurer. Since 2021, Scott has been presenting academic papers on the origins and culture of hippie communities that established the US cannabis industry's cradle in southern Humboldt County. Scott has been producing TV, books, art, and archives on the Humboldt Bay region for 30 years. Most notable is his suite of books (www.chronicfreedomseries.com) and the Low Tide Art|Archive project (www.lowtidearchive.com).
Richard is a highly regarded Northern Humboldt-based political activist who has managed or advised local campaigns, including the 2004 historic defeat of the attempted recall campaign against District Attorney Paul Gallegos. He’s been involved in electoral politics since his work as a field organizer on George McGovern’s 1972 Presidential campaign. He successfully challenged a local law restricting speech under the Cover of an anti-panhandling ordinance in Superior Court. He is a founding board member of the Humboldt Civil Liberties Defense Fund. He also professionally represents illustrators at richardsalzman.com.
Eileen McGee is a media producer and former teacher who works with organizations and campaigns in Humboldt with a focus on messaging that informs and raises awareness around issues of importance in the community. She engages with organizations working for change and limits her professional work to people and projects that she believes will make a difference.
Secretary. Douglas has lived in southern Humboldt County for half a century. He formed one of the area’s longest standing communes, engaged in early environmental protection efforts, was involved with the Acorn Alliance (anti-nuclear energy and weapons group), co-founded Ancient Forest International, directed the Institute for Sustainable Forestry, and has served as a community facilitator and mediator, all the while growing illegal commercial cannabis. He holds an MS in Environmental Systems.
Edie is a Certified Archivist (now retired) who holds an MA in Public History, has been a director at the Humboldt County Historical Society, spent 15 years in Special Collections/ Humboldt Room at Humboldt State University (now Cal-Poly Humboldt) Library, and is deeply committed to preserving the region’s history, particularly that of environmental activism.
President. Assistant Professor in Sociology at Cal Poly Humboldt, Cannabis Studies Program Lead; co-director of the Humboldt Institute for Interdisciplinary Marijuana Research; Founder and Executive Director of CASP; co-editor of the Routledge Handbook of Post-prohibition Cannabis Research.
Documenting the activism of Humboldt from the 60s to the present offers structural models.
Effective political organizing
The HAPA archive is the first and largest effort to preserve documents that reveal the nuts and bolts of Humboldt counterculture organizing.
Fights and measurable impacts from action on forest defense and river restoration in the Emerald Triangle through the 60s, 70s and 80s.