Rachel Barret on netting and fishing
This project chronicles the lives of Minnesota Native Americans who lived during World War II and are part of "Minnesota’s Greatest Generation." Some of the subjects discussed include growing up on a reservation; attending government run boarding schools; powwows; the Civilian Conservation Corps [CCC]; the Works Progress Administration [WPA]; enlisting in the armed forces; past and present life at the Red Lake Indian Reservation; the Great Depression; combat experiences during World War II; life after the war; the dropping of the atomic bombs; American Indian cultural identity and traditions; the American Indian Movement; and views on the Cold War and Iraq War.
My grandma used to set nets and that and we used to go live by the lake there by Sandy. That's where she had her place. She just had a shed and then we had the tent and we used to have to help in everything they did. So when she'd come in with the fish we'd have to take them out of the net and hang the nets. We'd help with that. Then she'd have her stuff ready where she'd have her kettle hanging over the fire. And lots of times I used to have to put wood there so it wouldn't go out. She taught me how to stir the food that was going to be in the kettle and fix it up like that. Everything we ate was boiled. And then she'd make that breat that you made by the fire in the frying pan or some kind of pan she had...[We would stay at Sandy] Oh, just from when they started the fishing in the spring until in the fall. But my grandma wouldn't fall fish. Well, it was until August or that when they quit fishing and then they'd do the whitefish fishing. But she didn't do that because I had to go to school and things.
Rachel Barrett (Red Lake), Oral History Interviews of the Minnesota's Greatest Generation Oral History Project: Native American interviews. Minnesota Historical Society, 2006, written transcript 29.