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An Archive of Santa Susana Field Laboratory Documents

guest post by Kim Cooper of Esotouric tours

Last week, The Department of Energy announced that an agreement had been reached with the California Sate Historic Preservation Office, to allow archeologists and representatives of native communities to examine areas of historic significance prior to toxic remediation at the Santa Susana Field Laboratory (SSFL) Superfund site.

Curious to learn more about the Pre-Conquest artifacts on the site, I threw some keywords into a search engine, and found… something else entirely.

Scanned for OCR search and visible to the internet, though at least partially otherwise unlisted, I had hit upon a cache of PDF files hosted on an obsolete version of the Santa Susana Field Laboratory cleanup website.

These documents, written by and to Rocketdyne, Boeing, independent scientists, government agencies, lawyers, politicians and community groups in some cases are stamped or inscribed with strong warnings of confidentiality or use restriction.

Among the restricted documents I read was HDMSE00251897.pdf, a 1957 memo documenting repeated incidents of sludge and discolored water runoff onto Brandeis Camp, a Jewish retreat downstream from Rocketdyne—two years before the partial meltdown of the Sodium Reactor Experiment (SRE) nuclear power plant. This document was referenced in the 2015 NBC4 investigative series L.A.’s Nuclear Secret, but appears not to have been published.

While I know a thing or two about the Santa Susana Mountains, my particular expertise is in the cultural history of local religious cults like The Royal Arms of the Great Eleven and WKFL Fountain of the World.
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