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Photos: A rendezvous with the past at Grand Portage

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Claire Sparling walks past the monument wall.
Claire Sparling walks past the wall outside the Grand Portage National Monument last Friday during Rendezvous Days in Grand Portage, Minn. The three-day event celebrates and recreates the intersection of Ojibwe people and the North West Company and their people, explorers and traders during its heyday in the late 1700s and early 1800s. Sparling, a Winnipeg native, dressed in period costume as a tailor, but made it clear that women of that profession were not common fixtures at the site. "Women in my profession would not normally be at a place like Grand Portage in the late 1700s and early 1800s, but rather in some place like Quebec," Sparling said.
Derek Montgomery for MPR News

Minnesota's Grand Portage National Monument played host to its Rendezvous Days and Powwow last weekend.

The three-day event celebrates and recreates the intersection of Ojibwe people and the European people, traders and explorers affiliated with the North West Company. It includes reenactments of life as it was during the area's heyday, in the late 1700s and early 1800s. 

The national monument — one of two in Minnesota — sits on the Grand Portage Indian Reservation, and celebrates its annual rendezvous alongside a powwow hosted by the Grand Portage Band of Lake Superior Chippewa.  

Established as a national monument — part of the country's national parks system, which celebrates its centennial this month — in 1960, the site marks the ancient path connecting Lake Superior with the Pigeon River upstream. It is situated near Grand Portage State Park, a state park jointly run by the state and the band.  

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