Agnes Baker Pilgrim

Member of the 13 Grandmothers Council

 “We grandmothers have come from far and wide to speak the knowledge we hold inside. In many languages, we have been told it is time to make the right changes for our families and for the lands we love. We can be the voice for the voiceless. We are at the threshold. We are going to see change. If we can create the vision in our heart, it will spread. As bringers of light, we have no choice but to join together. As women of wisdom, we cannot be divided. When the condor meets the eagle—thunderbirds come home.”
—Agnes Baker Pilgrim, member of the 13 Grandmothers Council

The oldest living member of the Takelma Indians and a world-renowned spiritual leader, Agnes Baker Pilgrim is one of the 13 grandmothers of the International Council of Thirteen Indigenous Grandmothers, a global alliance that teaches ancestral ways of prayer, education, and healing.

Born in 1924 in Lodgson, Oregon, on a tribal allotment near the headwaters of the Siletz River, Agnes grew up close to the Earth. In 1970, she decided to take the medicine name of her Takelma great-grandmother, “Taowhywee,” or Morningstar, and the spiritual path she had always felt calling her. Today, Agnes is the keeper of the Sacred Salmon Ceremony, and a member of the Cultural Heritage and Sacred Lands Committee of the Confederated Tribes of Siletz and the Oregon Historic Society.