Natalie Keyssar’s photos capture a small-town Native American beauty pageant

Written by Jacqui Palumbo, CNN

Each year, pageants like Miss Native American and Miss Indian World invite indigenous women from around the United States to represent historically disenfranchised tribes and celebrate their cultural heritage.

And in the rural town of Pembroke, North Carolina, which sits along the state’s southern border, a much smaller annual pageant takes place: one honoring the girls and women of a tribe that has fought for federal recognition for over 130 years.

Kerigahn Jacobs, Miss Teen Lumbee 2018, and Lyndsey Locklear, Miss Lumbee 2018, wearing their native regalia.

Kerigahn Jacobs, Miss Teen Lumbee 2018, and Lyndsey Locklear, Miss Lumbee 2018, wearing their native regalia. Credit: Natalie Keyssar

The Lumbee Homecoming is a week-long summer event hosted by the Lumbee Tribe of North Carolina, and includes competitions for Miss Lumbee, Teen Miss Lumbee, Junior Miss Lumbee, Little Miss Lumbee and Senior Ms. Lumbee, as well as a veteran’s ball, pow wow and parade.

This year’s Homecoming, originally set to begin in late June,

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