First Families: A Photographic History of California Indians

Experience the living history of California Indians

When L. Frank and Marina Drummer went on the road in 2002, they set out to visit as many people from different California tribes as possible. Crisscrossing the state, they taped hundreds of hours of interviews and collected copies of nearly fifteen hundred family photos. The documentary project, funded by the California State Library and LEF Foundation, paints an unprecedented portrait of California’s indigenous people using their own words and photographs from their own family albums.

In turns moody, beautiful, warm, and humorous, First Families is a one-of-a-kind book that combines extremely personal images with text that gives readers a broader, deeper view of Indian history and many complex living cultures.

A Choice Magazine Outstanding Academic Title

About the Author

L. Frank (Ajachmem/Tongva) is an artist and “decolonizationist” who has exhibited in numerous shows and published a collection of her drawings, Acorn Soup. A cultural activist, she is one of the founding board members of the Advocates for Indigenous California Language Survival.
Kim Hogeland has an M.A. in history from U.C. Davis and is a regular contributor for News from Native California. She lives in Oakland and works as a freelance writer and historian.