Gathering Wild Rice

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Gathering wild rice, Detroit Lake, Minnesota.

Anishinaabe people have been harvesting manoomin (wild rice) since time immemorial. They relate that manoomin was one of the reasons they came to Minnesota; the third vision of the Seven Fires Prophecy of the Ojibwe people declared that “the Anishinaabe will find the path to their chosen ground, a land in the west to which they must move their families. This will be the land where food grows upon the waters.” Ricing continues to this day, though this staple food of woodland Minnesota is now highly threatened by the degradation of environmental pollutants produced by heavy industry in the area.