Tribal oral historical accounts indicate that Pauma Valley, in North San Diego, and the surrounding area has been home to our ancestors since time immemorial. Our ancestors who inhabited this area spent much of their time moving between the inland waterways and the foothills of Palomar Mountain.
They were not unlike any other group of people – they had religion, families, stories, wars, games and customs. Like other cultures, they laughed and cried, ate and drank, sang and danced, defended their families when needed and extended hospitality as well.
Before contact with Europeans, life had its social norms just like modern life. For example, children were taught that elders ate first out of respect. A boy was allowed to eat deer meat only after he had grown shoulder-high to his father. He was urged to eat sparingly and stay healthy, become a good runner and live to raise his own children and grandchildren.
The river that flows through the Pauma Valley out to the Pacific Ocean is called the San Luis Rey River – we called it Keish – and the mild climate along the San Luis Rey provided our ancestors with an ideal environment for thousands of years.