Heritage Seeds for Sustainable Lifeways

This project convenes an interdisciplinary, problem-solving meeting team of University of Michigan, Anishinaabe (Tribal), and USDA plant specialists to identify key issues and develop protocols to enable sharing of heritage seeds and associated archival information currently curated in University collections.
 
Topics that will be discussed include ways that museum collections can aid in community-based sustainable lifeways initiatives, methods to assess the viability of seeds in museum collections, innovative uses of museum plant collections by Anishinaabe communities (Indigenous peoples of the Great Lakes region), and appropriate means and domains of information sharing among the partners. Meeting participants will also explore additional collaborative projects, including public outreach/interpretation at the UM Matthaei Botanical Gardens and engaged learning programs with Anishinaabe community members.
 
The project will result in a Collaborative Framework documenting these critical decision-making processes and agreed procedures that will allow the development of a subsequent pilot project involving seed and information sharing. More broadly, the project will lay the foundation for sustainable-lifeways collaborative research using museum collections and be a model for ways to create partnerships between universities and Tribal communities. 
 
Project Team
David C. Michener - Matthaei Botanical Gardens and Nichols Arboretum, University of Michigan
James Penner-Hahn - Museum of Anthropological Archaeology, University of Michigan
Philip J. Deloria - Departments of History and American Culture, LSA, University of Michigan
Christina Walters - USDA National Center for Genetic Resources Preservation
Shannon Martin - Ziibiwing Center of Anishinabe Culture and Lifeways
Sydney Martin - Gun Lake Tribe; Match-E-Be-Nash-She-Wish Band of Pottawatomi Indians
Kevin Finney - Gun Lake Tribe; Match-E-Be-Nash-She-Wish Band of Pottawatomi Indians
Scott M. Herron - Biology, Ferris State University
Lisa Young - Museum of Anthropological Archaeology, University of Michigan
Jessica Litman - Law School, University of Michigan
Dan Cornelius - Intertribal Agricultural Council, Great Lakes Region
 
Resources
Sustaining Lifeways and Anishinaabe Partners (July 19, 2017) Feature article describing the project