Rice harvesting tools

Cameron High School students recently studied authentic equipment used by Native Americans to harvest rice. From left, Danielle Jacobson, holding wild rice sticks, daughter of Dan Jacobson and Margaret Christianson; Arianah Crabb, wearing bead shawl, daughter of Rochelle Hendricks, and Kallei Stovern, holding moccasins, daughter of Jeni and Chris Stovern. Photo contributed

Students have been getting some hands-on experience with history in Sarah Pica’s freshman history class at Cameron High School.

In a recent message, Pica said that the history lessons have been delivered courtesy of “Traveling Tammy,” otherwise known as Tammy Schutz, director of the Barron County Historical Society and Pioneer Village.

“Tammy has been visiting my classroom one Thursday each month,” Pica wrote. “She presents artifacts from the museum and teaches students about local history. It has been an awesome experience.”

During her September 2020 visit, Schutz brought along a key artifact from Pioneer Village Museum – the original “County Seat,” which (according to legend) was spirited from Rice Lake to Barron in the 19th century. The seat includes a storage compartment, where (according to the story) important county documents were stored.

In October, Schutz dropped by with authentic Ojibwe wild rice tools and bead work. On Thursday, Nov. 19, her presentation will feature artifacts related to clothing.

Handed down from a family that originally lived on the Lac Court Oreilles Reservation, the artifacts were used by Native Americans in their annual wild rice harvests.