Margaret Mathewson

mathewsm [at]

Office: 541-737-9133

Strand Agriculture Hall

Strand Agriculture Hall 118

170 SW Waldo Place

170 SW Waldo Place
Corvallis, OR 97331


Profile Field Tabs

Affiliated with: 
Anthropology Department

Margaret Mathewson, PhD, ethnobotanist, Specialist in traditional land use and ancestral technologies, particularly fiber arts and traditional foods- North and South America, Arctic, Pacific Islands, ancient Europe, Ancient Japan.

She has a BA in Biology and Anthropology from UC Santa Cruz (1985), and MA and PhD from UC Berkeley- focusing on contemporary trends in Western Native traditional plant uses and skills.  She did a post doctoral fellowship at the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History Native Studies program in 1999, studying early collections of plants and baskets there.  She works part time for Oregon State University, University of Oregon, University of Victoria BC,  as well as for many Western Native Tribes, museums and interpretive centers teaching and assisting with traditional skills and restoration projects.  She also runs a retreat center and willow farm in western Oregon, Ancient Arts Center, teaching and hosting guest workshops.

Selected Current contracts- Graton Rancheria California, Grand Ronde tribes of Oregon, Shoalwater tribe Washington, ongoing with Great Basin Basketweavers in Shurz, Yerrington and Carson City Nevada, Eel river Wailaki tribe, Salinan nation currently seeking grant, UC Berkeley Native Plant Garden, UO Museum of Natural and Cultural History basketry consultant, Oregon Museum of Science and Industry team Roots of Wisdom exhibit opened June 2013, Cosmic Serpent fellow (NSF funded collaboration between western science and indigenous knowledge), National Basketry Organization- exhibit on endangered basketry plants and traditions.  Christensen funded grant travel to Europe in 2010 and Russia in 2014 and 2015 studying museum collections of traditional basketry and other items with Graton Rancheria tribal members.

Current teaching positions- OSU Depts of Anthro, Ethnic Studies and Agriculture, University of Victoria - Dept of Anthro summer session archeology field school in fiber technologies.