Support for Intertribal Gatherings produces cultural events, engages in ceremonies, and organizes to restore indigenous culture in San Francisco.
The Ohlone are the indigenous people of the San Francisco Bay, south of the main channel. The largest Ohlone group descends from Ohlone who left San Francisco when Mission Dolores closed in 1834. After many years of segregation, Ohlone culture has revived during the last thirty years; but rarely in San Francisco.
Since its creation in 2008, the Ohlone Profiles Project has consistently worked with cultural leaders to host cycles of ceremonies and events, providing a space for Ohlone to publicly return to San Francisco and showcase their rich cultural history. We hope this is a step towards cultural recognition, a process where the city and people of San Francisco can help secure a future for the Ohlone. Our focus has been on cultural revitalization and practice. We do not exclude or include groups based on concerns that federal recognition status changes due to participating in our cultural efforts. The city and people of San Francisco have an important opportunity and an immense historical responsibility to restore the largely forgotten Ohlone culture to public life.
The Ohlone tribe is not what it was before contact, and it will never be that again. But the process of supporting the tribe and engaging in dialogue with it can only help the tribe to revive and help us by recovering the truth about our history. Because there is near universal consensus that the tribe is extinct, every event by the current ongoing Ohlone groups, honoring their history and their present, breaks that false consensus while also opening us to new possibilities and truths about the past and the future.
Primary image: Pajara Valley Ohlone blessing the shoreline at Candlestick Point State Park in 2015. Ohlone elder Patrick Orozco heads the dance.