New Camp Standards for Rendezvous

Camp Standards

A Guide to Camping at the 1838 Rendezvous

Camp standards provide a comfortable starting point. The following standards are similar to those established by the Western National Rendezvous. Everyone should do the best they can to assemble a camp with clothing and gear that accurately represents history through 1840. There will also be a modern “tin teepee area available for camping for those not able or willing to camp period. We encourage those in the modern camping area to stay as period as possible (i.e. Stay in period dress while in camp, etc).

These standards are the bare minimum expected by the 1838 Rendezvous Association. All participants are encouraged to progress into ever more historically accurate representations of people from the past. Our intent in these standards is not to discourage participation but rather to enhance the rendezvous experience.

Camp security (dog soldiers) will ask you, gently, to avoid compromising the following camp standards, but standards will be enforced.

1. All visible clothing and gear should be pre-1840. This applies to children as well as adults.

2. Participants should be in suitable pre-1840 attire when in camp. Clothing doesn’t need to be elaborate, just as historically accurate as possible. 1838 camp standards are very forgiving; machine stitched clothing is acceptable, but all exposed seams should be hand stitched.

3. Keep plastic water jugs and coolers covered at all times. When hauling water or ice to your camp, keep non-period containers covered. Burlap sacks, canvas, or hides work well to cover non-period containers.

4. Vehicles will be allowed in camp for loading and unloading only. Vehicles must be out of the primitive area prior to the opening of the rendezvous and will not be allowed in camp again until after closing ceremonies. Reasonable exceptions can be granted at the discretion of the Booshway (or the Segundo in the absence of the Booshway).

5. Park in the designated areas. Vehicles parked in unauthorized areas may be towed at the owner’s expense. Modern camping is allowed in designated areas.

6. Parents are legally and financially responsible for the actions of their children.

7. All animals must be on a leash and attended by their owners. Owners are liable, legally and financially, for the actions of their pets.

8. Cannons are allowed at the discretion of the Booshway (or the Segundo in the absence of the Booshway).

9. In the interest of safety, firearms used during shooting events must be unloaded prior to leaving the designated shooting area. Opening/closing ceremony participants may be allowed use black powder firearms at the discretion of the Booshway (or the Segundo in the absence of the Booshway). If use is approved for opening/closing ceremonies, firearms must be loaded with a powder load only, NO projectiles.

10. Place trash in designated areas. Bring your own trash bags for use in your camp. A plastic trash bag placed inside a burlap bag is a standard practice.

11. No chain saws.

12. Do not cut live trees.

13. Remove and preserve sod from your fire pit and replace it when you leave. Preservation of our site is important. Use an existing fire pit when possible. If it is not possible, do not leave a ring of stones when you leave; disperse the stones to their original location.

14. Campfires must not be left unattended. This time of year is often quite dry and fires are a potential disaster. Check with the Booshway, Segundo or dog-soldiers to ensure no fire bans are currently in place prior to lighting a fire.

15. You must have a period container of water (at least 3 gallons) and a shovel near your campfire. Common sense would dictate extinguishing fires in high wind periods.

16. Fighting will not be tolerated. This includes domestic disturbances.

17. All local, state and federal laws regarding sales or consumption of alcohol apply in camp. Participants are encouraged to use period containers for beverages.

18. Generators should be used with discretion in the modern camping area and are not allowed in the primitive camp. Be considerate and respectful of your neighbor and the period atmosphere when using a generator.

19. Additional: These are some things that are discouraged in camp- T-shirts, plastic rain gear, bikini or halter tops, tennis shoes, shower shoes, sandals, logger boots, pack boots, cowboy boots (Wellington boots and high button shoes are tolerated), bathing suits, blue jeans, dusters, cowboy hats, “modern rifles or pistols, black powder cartridge rifles, black power revolvers (except Paterson models), “cowboy attire, dance hall attire, Coleman or electric lanterns, flashlights, metal or plastic camp furniture. If you have any questions about what is appropriate, write to the 1838 Rendezvous Association OR ask the Booshway or Segundo. We are a teaching rendezvous; do the best you can until you can do better.


1. All trade goods should be pre-1840.

2. The Booshway (or the Segundo in the absence of the Booshway) has the final authority over all disputes involving trade goods.

3. All furs and animal parts for sale must comply with local, state and federal laws. Traders are responsible for the legality of their trade goods.

4. Any non-period materials should be kept out of sight at all times. This includes blister packs, Styrofoam, blanket wraps, candy containers, etc.

5. Sticky tags are highly discouraged.

6. Books, magazines, patterns, original works of art and limited edition prints should pertain to the pre-1840 era.

7. Please keep jewelry to the style of the era.

8. All firearms for sale must be pre-1840.

9. No tailgate setups will be allowed in the parking area.

10. All trading must be done from pre-1840 structures, except blanket traders.

Thank you for supporting the 1838 Rendezvous and helping us to preserve this historical site.

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