Highlights – Selected Searches in the Archive

Using Advanced Search on the Explore page can let you find amazing discoveries about the Stanislaus and the fight to save it. Here are a few of the searches that you can run by just clicking the link:

Special Portfolio – Select images, video, audio and documents that represent key times and iconic moments (more coming as we add to the archive)

Proposition 17 – The 1974 initiative campaign involved over 200,000 people, trying to keep the upper river from destruction by New Melones – here are images and artifacts from that amazing effort

Tim Palmer’s Collection – Author, photographer, activist, and so much more, Tim’s legacy for the Stan is captured here.  See also Don Brigg’s collection, more outstanding photographs.

Video and audio files – Movies, interviews, songs – they’re all in this selection.

Witness and Encampment – the April – June 1979 gatherings that focused on how to stop and memorialize the gradual flooding of the river were a pivotal moment of thoughtful, passionate non-violent protest. Related was the creation of the Timepiece at Parrott’s Ferry.

The flooding that destroyed Stanislaus – Hard to look at, the gradual flooding left scenes of tragedy all along its course; the strategy of human water makers is seen here; the strategy of chaining to stop flooding is here; the efforts to protest the clearcutting of the canyon are here.

May-June 1979: Chaining as protest – Mark Dubois’ dramatic protest, and those of a number of others who did the same, against filling the New Melones reservoir – these gave room for more pro-river efforts to be undertaken.

River guides – This selection highlights some of the men and women who guided for commercial companies, showing slices of their lives.

Martin Blake’s Stanislaus River Museum/Notebooks collection  – Martin Blake created an amazing museum of framed art, photos and documents about the Stanislaus, displayed for many years in a storefront in Sonora, CA. The collection eventually moved to his house, where it remained when he died in May 2022. Most of the significant items from his collection are in StanislausRiver.org with more being added in 2022.

Up Rose Creek – The experience of the pools of Rose Creek was a joyful moment for anyone who was on the river and hiked up, as these images attest

Friends of the River scenes and materials – FOR came into being in the 1974 Proposition 17 campaign and continued on during the 70s and 80s, and to this day; those early days are shown here – includes images and documents.

Headwaters – All the issues of FOR’s Headwaters newsletter during the 1970s, early 1980s, in PDF format;  from 1979-1980, the Stanislaus Campaign News was also published monthly.

The pro-dam people and New Melones – The arguments and the people who pushed for the dam and the destruction of the Stanislaus River

The history and cultural places of the river – the images and history of places you may not even have heard about

Poems about the Stanislaus – Some of those who used verse to celebrate the river, the fight for it, the lessons from the efforts to save it.

The epic river runs in January, 1980 during 30-40,000 CFS flood stage.

Personal stories about experiences of running the river and just being in the canyon.

Jeff Nixon’s photographs – the noted black and white photographer made this series in the 1978-1980 period and turned them and others into an exhibit on the Stanislaus in 1982.

Other searches to try:

  • Creator = Don Briggs, or Coni Beeson, both of whom have amazing libraries of images, or any others shown.
  • Location – rapids, camps, other places, 60+ marked along the river and off-river (Natural Bridges, Chicken Falls, so many more..)
  • Keywords – try “Joy”, or “Cultural”

Go to Advanced Search and try typing in words in Title, or Description, or choosing any of the other items there!


Help us LOCATE photos that don’t have locations – review these images, and send us email with the URLs of the items you know about and information about them.

Help us identify PEOPLE and SCENES (mostly from the campaigns) that we aren’t sure about – review these images, send us email with the URLs of the items you can identify and that information.

You can also run these searches yourself – just type  “Where is” or “Needs Identification” in the Search box in https://www.stanislausriver.org/explore/