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Dry Creek Rancheria Band of Pomo Indians facts for kids

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Dry Creek Rancheria Band of Pomo Indians
Dry Creek Rancheria Band of Pomo Indians flag.gif
Total population
approximately 800–1,000
Regions with significant populations
 United States ( California)
English, Pomoan languages
Related ethnic groups
other Pomo people

The Dry Creek Rancheria Band of Pomo Indians is a federally recognized tribe of Pomo people, an indigenous people of California. It has a reservation near Geyserville, California, in Sonoma County, where it operates the River Rock Casino Resort.


The Pomo people are indigenous to northern California and formed about 21 autonomous communities, speaking seven Pomoan languages. The Dry Creek Band are Southern Pomo, descended from the Mihilakawna and Makahmo bands. Sustained European contact began with the Russian fur trappers in the 18th century. They were followed in the 19th century by American gold prospectors and settlers, who quickly outnumbered the native populations.

In 1915, the federal government purchased and held in fee, land for the "Dry Creek Rancheria", Dry Creek Valley being the name of the area, for use by both the "Dry Creek" Indians and the Geyserville Indians. The Dry Creek area, in what is now the Alexander Valley, was and still is prime agricultural land. The purchase was part of the U.S. rancheria program, which began in 1893 and ended around 1922, when 58 tracts of land were purchased in California on which "homeless" Indians could live rent- and tax-free. Most of the land was selected and purchased by Special Indian Agent John Terrell, who took much care in finding good plots of land. Adults were to be given assigned plots of land, but in actuality, most Indians simply moved onto the rancherias with no assignments. No one was ever forced to live on a rancheria.

The tribe was reorganized via Articles of Association adopted on September 13, 1972. The Articles were approved by the Secretary of the Interior on April 16, 1973.

The tribe's name was officially changed from "Dry Creek Rancheria" to "Dry Creek Rancheria Band of Pomo Indians".

In 2002, the tribe established River Rock Casino on its reservation near Geyserville. The casino includes the Quail Run Restaurant, the Oak Bar, and Lounge 128.

Reservation and lands

The tribe's reservation is the Dry Creek Rancheria, situated near the town of Geyserville in Sonoma County, California. The reservation has an area of 75 acres (300,000 m2) – a remnant of the 86,400 acres (350 km2) the tribe once owned. Much of the original reservation lands were inundated by the waters of Lake Sonoma after the construction of the Warm Springs Dam.

The tribe also owns 277 acres (1.12 km2) south of Petaluma, for which it applied to be taken into federal trust, before suspending its application. In October 2013, the tribe added a 60-room hotel to its plan for the land, but the tribe's leader continued to insist that there were no plans for a casino.

The Dry Creek Pomo conduct business out of Geyserville and Healdsburg, California.

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