Forensic Fashion
(c) 2006-present R. Macaraeg


>Costume Studies
>>1850 Pomo warrior
Subject: warrior
Culture: Pomo
Setting: central California 19thc

Context (Event Photos, Primary Sources, Secondary Sources, Field Notes)


* Paterek 1994 p272
 "Men went naked almost all of the time; occasionally they wrapped a skin around the hips, or even wore a breechclout fashioned from rabbit fur.  Leggings of skin or of tule fibers were used for traveling in mountain snows."

* Dubin 2003 p124
"Californias' generally mild climate required minimal daily clothing under most circumstances.  In warmer seasons, the men wore folded deerskins or netted belts ....  In winter, men put on buckskin leggings, while both sexes added capes of grass fiber, rabbit skin, bear, deerskin, or, if wealthy, sea-otter fur.
    "Everyday adornment was spare, although some people embellished their garments and themselves."


* Jones 2004 p20
"A Smithsonian Institution photo taken in 1900 shows a Pomo man in rod-armor, an upper-torso cuirass formed of dowels of willow and hazel shoots closely twined together.  The corselet had two layers.  Within the inner layer the rods were sewn in tight horizontal layers, looking exactly like the hair-bone breastplates of the historic Plains Indians.  On the outer layer, the rods were bound together vertically."

* Paterek 1994 p273
"Body armor was made of willow or hazel shoots closely twined with cords in two layers; the outer layer was of vertical rods and the inner layer of horizontal rods.  The armor may have been effective against arrows, but it definitely reduced the warrior's mobility." 



* Paterek 1994 p272-273
 "Ornaments were many and varied, usually indicating the status of the wearer.  Clamshell disk beads, abalone pendants, feathers, and magnesite cylinders were fashioned into necklaces.  The magnesite, which looked like creamy-white chalk, turned a delicate salmon color when roasted in the ashes; often referred to as 'Indian gold,' magnesite was an important item ot trade and the Pomo, with their significant deposits of the mineral supplied much of central California. Hairpins, earrings, and earplugs were beautifully and delicately made of quail, bluebird, woodpecker, or mallard feathers fastened to crane wing bones with tiny bits of shell added. Men frequently wore a shaft of abalone shell as nose ornament.  These articles of jewelry were not only a part of ceremonial attire, but were visible evidences of wealth."

​* Dubin 2003 p125
"The Pomo wore etched bird bones with feathers as ear ornaments."

* Dubin 2003 p124 f247
"The Pomo traditionally wore ear tubes of long, incised bird bones or wooden rods tipped with small, brilliant feathers, an art form continued by Pomo artisans into the early 1900s."