Our Mission:
To preserve the cultural heritage of upper New River Valley circa 1900: artifacts, tools, equipment, methods and skills. Beyond this, our goal is to examine the successful adaptations early farm families made with respect to their social relationships and physical environment.

The organizing principle is the LIVING HISTORY. Our goal is to remove the tools and equipment from the traditionally held spaces of walls and glass cases and put them to use for an experiential museum.

We aspire to become a leading educational and research institution exploring the economic and social history of the Southern Appalachians.

Experience the history of place through:

  •     Workshops
  •     Heritage Day Events
  •     S.O.L. Based Field Trips
  •     Environmental Education
  •     Self-guided Tour


Matthews Living History Farm Museum is a 21 acre working farm, circa 1900. We are a 501 (c) 3 Non-Profit organization.  The activities demonstrated at the farm represent common practices in Grayson County around 1900.  Key survival skills required for self-sufficiency in that era have become today’s art forms.  From gardening to blacksmithing, wood carving to food preservation, quilting to chair caning, soap making to quilting, driving a team of horses or oxen to spinning a fine thread – these are a few of the dying arts of the region that we seek to preserve.  A timeless and enduring aspect of the culture is the unique, unforgettable music of the region, which we attempt to incorporate into every event.  It is also important to us to help preserve the stories of the founding families of our region,  the communities that they helped build, and the tools they used to build them.

Our story is the story of Appalachia, the story of rugged beauty, self-reliance, perseverance, and the abundance of nature.

We are a small group of people, dedicated to the preservation of this history.  We invite you to join us in our efforts with your talents, your curiosity, and your support.