Pomo people who lived near the coast of the Pacific Ocean in cone-shaped dwellings built of redwood wood and bark were known for their distinctive way of life. People who lived further inland in bigger rectangular huts made of poles, bush, and grass were known as Pomo. The Pomo subsisted mostly on fishing and hunting, particularly for deer, birds, and small animals.
Pomo males typically wore nothing but grass and deerskin skirts, and Pomo women wore nothing but grass and deerskin skirts. When it was colder, males wore leggings and women wore shawls made of plant fibers. While the Pomos went hunting or traveled, they would wear moccasins made of deerskin on their feet; yet, when they were in their own towns, they often walked barefoot.
The Pomo language includes the terms and, which were combined to form the name Pomo. It was previously the name of a settlement that was located in southern Potter Valley close to where the community of Pomo is located now. The term’s original meaning was ″those who dwell at red earth hole.″
Pomo Indians are well-known around the world for their baskets. Even while males constructed some baskets for hunting and selling, the majority of the tribe’s baskets were woven by the women of the tribe. Pomo Indians stored seeds and other dry foods in the vast majority of their baskets because they relied on the food they obtained as their primary source of nutrition.
It is believed that the people that currently make up the tribe originally hail from the area of Sonoma County in the state of California. This would have been a coastal location rich in redwood forests in the past. The first individuals to travel to the Clear Lake area began their voyage around 9,000 years ago. This migration marked the beginning of the creation of the Pomo tribe.
Northern Pomo is a Pomoan language that is spoken by the Pomo people, who are indigenous to the area that is now known as California. The language is in a severely endangered state. Traditionally, those who spoke Northern Pomo were those who resided in the most northern and expansive part of the land inhabited by the Pomoan people.
Both males and females of the Pomo tribes are skilled basket weavers, however the woven items they create are used in slightly different ways. In general, the women make the coiled, twined, or feathered baskets that are used for cooking and storing food. These baskets are utilized for both purposes. In addition, the baskets used in religious rites are made by the women.
In 1958, the state of California stripped the Pomo rancherias and a large number of other Native American tribes of their status as recognized indigenous communities.
Since the beginning of recorded history, the Pomo people of this region have practiced environmentally responsible farming methods, cultivating spring greens, a wide assortment of berries, Indian potatoes, a diversified array of seed crops for pinole, and acorns for use in flour production.