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The city is named for Pomona, the ancient Roman goddess of fruit. For horticulturist Solomon Gates, "Pomona" was the winning entry in a contest to name the city in 1875, before anyone had ever planted a fruit tree. The city was first settled by Ricardo Vejar and Ygnacio Palomares in the 1830s, when California and much of the now-American Southwest were part of Mexico. The first Anglo-Americans arrived in prior to 1848 when the signing of the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo resulted in California becoming part of the United States. By the 1880s, the arrival of railroads and Coachella Valley water had made it the western anchor of the citrus-growing region. Pomona was officially incorporated on January 6, 1888.
In the 1920s Pomona was known as the "Queen of the Citrus Belt", with one of the highest per-capita levels of income in the United States. In the 1940s it was used as a movie-previewing location for major motion picture studios to see how their films would play to modally middle-class audiences around the country (for which Pomona was at that time viewed as an idealized example).
Religious institutions are deeply embedded in the history of Pomona. There are now more than 120 churches, representing most religions in today's society. The historical architecture of these churches provide glimpses of the European church design and architecture from other eras.
Pomona has a Mediterranean climate (Köppen climate classificationCsa) with hot, dry summers and mild, damp winters and a large amount of sunshine year-round. August is the warmest month with an average daytime high temperature of 92 °F (33 °C). Summers are characterized by sunny days and very little rainfall during the months of June through September. Fall brings cooler temperatures and occasional showers, as well as seasonal Santa Ana winds originating from the northeast. December is the coolest month with an average high temperature of 68 °F (20 °C). Winter also brings the majority of annual precipitation. Snowfall is virtually unheard of, but frost can occur once or twice a year. Annual precipitation averages 17.32 inches (439.9 mm).
The Census reported that 144,920 people (97.2% of the population) lived in households, 2,782 (1.9%) lived in non-institutionalized group quarters, and 1,356 (0.9%) were institutionalized.
There were 38,477 households, out of which 19,690 (51.2%) had children under the age of 18 living in them, 19,986 (51.9%) were opposite-sex married couples living together, 6,960 (18.1%) had a female householder with no husband present, 3,313 (8.6%) had a male householder with no wife present. There were 2,823 (7.3%) unmarried opposite-sex partnerships, and 299 (0.8%) same-sex married couples or partnerships. 5,810 households (15.1%) were made up of individuals and 2,010 (5.2%) had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 3.77. There were 30,259 families (78.6% of all households); the average family size was 4.15.
The population was spread out with 43,853 people (29.4%) under the age of 18, 20,155 people (13.5%) aged 18 to 24, 42,311 people (28.4%) aged 25 to 44, 31,369 people (21.0%) aged 45 to 64, and 11,370 people (7.6%) who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 29.5 years. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 98.4 males.
There were 39,620 housing units  at an average density of 1,771.8 per square mile (684.1/km²), of which 21,197 (55.1%) were owner-occupied, and 17,280 (44.9%) were occupied by renters. The homeowner vacancy rate was 2.0%; the rental vacancy rate was 5.9%. 80,968 people (54.3% of the population) lived in owner-occupied housing units and 63,952 people (42.9%) lived in rental housing units
During 2009-2013, Pomona had a median household income of $49,474, with 21.6% of the population living below the federal poverty line.
Since the 1980s, Pomona's newest neighborhood Phillips Ranch, experienced rapid growth with homes still being built in the hilly area between Downtown and Diamond Bar. Today, Phillips Ranch is nearly all residential. Northern Pomona has seen some gentrification with additional housing units added and revamped streetscapes. Pomona Electronics was originally based in the city.
The city is the site of the Fairplex, which hosts the L.A. County Fair and the Pomona Swap Meet & Classic Car Show. The swap meet (for car parts and accessories) is part of the car show, which is a single-day event held seven times throughout the year.
Pomona was incorporated on January 6, 1888 and adopted a charter in 1911, making it a charter city.
The city is governed by a seven-member city council. Regular municipal elections are held on a Tuesday after the first Monday in November in even-numbered years. Councilmembers serve four-year terms, and the mayor is the presiding councilmember, elected at-large. The other six members are elected by districts. Every eight months, the council appoints a new vice mayor from among its members.
According to the city's most recent Comprehensive Annual Financial Report, the city's various funds had $220.3 million in Revenues, $225.5 million in expenditures, $818.3 million in total assets, $520.0 million in total liabilities, and $80.6 million in cash and investments.
The major daily newspaper in the area is Inland Valley Daily Bulletin. La Opinión is the city's major Spanish-language paper. There are also a wide variety of smaller regional newspapers, alternative weeklies and magazines, including:
The service runs much more frequently than other area mass transit, and operates around the clock. 60-foot NABI articulated buses are used on this route, like the ones used on the Metro Orange Line, Metro Local, and Metro Rapid.
It was rumored that Walt Disney originally planned on having Disneyland built in Pomona, but the city council declined his offer, fearing that the park would not succeed and would cause the city to go into debt. According to a reporter for the Inland Valley Daily Bulletin, David Allen, his former colleague, Matthew Tresaugue had reported, in 1997 story, that Pomona was merely one of 71 considered cities, but was ruled out due to temperature extremes, i.e. too hot in summer and too cold at night. Author James Ellroy used Pomona as the setting for the fictional amusement park Dream-a-Dreamland in his novel L.A. Confidential. Dream-a-Dreamland and its fictional owner, the cartoon magnate Ray Dieterling, were based very closely on Disneyland and Walt Disney.
In a Walt Disney 1940 cartoon short Mr. Mouse Takes a Trip, Mickey and Pluto board a train from Burbank while evading a "no dogs allowed" policy enforced by conductor Pete until coincidentally getting kicked out at their destination, Pomona.
In an I Love Lucy episode, the main characters of the show "go out to the country" on a day trip to Pomona. This is now seen as odd due to Pomona since becoming quite urban. In 1940, Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz spent their honeymoon in downtown Pomona.
In the 1988 film Die Hard, John McClane (Bruce Willis) tells his wife, Holly Genaro McClane (Bonnie Bedelia) that he will be staying with his former captain, who has moved to "Ramona". She laughs at him, saying it is pronounced "Pomona".
In promotional material for the 1992 Spinal Tap album Break Like the Wind, David St. Hubbins (Michael McKean) takes a break from music to coach a youth soccer team in Pomona.
In the "Treehouse of Horror XVI" episode of The Simpsons, during the introductory scene, during the Springfield Isoptopes's game Pomona was used in a parody of The OC. A poster background depicting the word Pomona in a The OC template. The announcer prompts Fox's newest endeavor "Pomona": "it's even hotter away from the beach." The episode was written and produced by Pomona native Marc Wilmore.
In the animated series Pinky and the Brain episode titled "Brain Noir" Brain says to Pinky, "...With the populace trapped in their hats, we shall seize Los Angeles, and then--Pomona!"
^"Construction Phases FAQ". Foothill Gold Line. Metro Gold Line Foothill Extension Construction Authority. Retrieved . Major construction is anticipated to begin in 2020, with substantial completion anticipated in 2026[.]
^Shasha, Dennis Elliott; Lazere, Cathy A. (1998). "Robert E. Tarjan: In Search of Good Structure". Out of Their Minds: The Lives and Discoveries of 15 Great Computer Scientists. Copernicus/Springer. p. 103. ISBN978-0-387-97992-2. OCLC32240355.