Lushootseed Research
A Non-Profit Since 1983

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The 5th Annual Lushootseed Language Conference will be hosted once again by Seattle University

Seattle University's Office of the President will host the 5th Annual Lushootseed Language Conference on May 10th, 2014.

For more information go to Events page.




The Voices of Lushootseed

Lushootseed Research is excited about a new feature to our website. Available now and currently under construction is our lessons page.

This feature was created to enhance the original Lushootseed language curriculum developed by Thom Hess and Vi Hilbert. These instructional texts are the results of more than thirty years of research, collaboration and consultation with the University of Washington and many highly respected Coast Salish elders throughout Puget Sound including:

Louise George, cisxʷisał;
Dewey Mitchell;
Helen Ross, switatkʷ;
Al Sampson, sx̌əlpqidəb;
Martin Sampson, ʔalatał;
Ernie Barr, šidut; and
Joyce Cheeka,
Since many of us grew up speaking Engish as a first language, many of the sounds required to speak Lushootseed are unfamiliar and difficult to master. Unfortunately, for some of us it is extremely difficult to find time within our busy schedules to travel, sometimes great distances, to where classes are available. Inspite of the heroic efforts of numerous tribal language programs and many dedicated individuals, both Native and non-Native, who continue working tirelessly promoting and teaching the Lushootseed language, their numbers are still very low. The good news is that the number of Lushootseed speakers is growing daily thanks to their efforts!

With many of these challenges in mind we hope the audio clips featured on our lessons page will help and encourage those who endeavor the challenges of independent learning. 

We are especially greatful for Vi Hilbert and Helen Ross who recorded all of the lessons in the curriculum.  If it were not for their wisdom and foresight none of these audio clips would be available.

liłlaqəxʷ wiẁsuʔəxʷ kwi łasluud tiʔeʔ cədił sx̌ʷudx̌ʷud čəł. [gʷəł čəwatil əlgʷəʔ.] 

Future youngsters will be the ones to hear our talk. [and they will learn.]

                  -  gʷeqʷulc̀əʔ
                     Susie Sampson Peter

Go the Lessons Now

Phrases in Lushootseed 

Phrases in Lushootseed will feature different phrases used by our elders. These phrases give expression to their understanding and practice of the Lushootseed language and culture. This month's phrase expresses their wisdom and hospitality

tix̌ix̌dubut, ləshuyud dč̀uʔ kʷi adx̌əč.

Take care of yourself, make yourself single-minded to avoid confusion!

From the Director

Recently the University of Washington Ethnomusicology Archives and Northwest Heritage Resources launched a new website called, Voices of the First People. The site enables us to hear the voices of numerous elders sharing traditional stories, cultural wisdom and history. It is a beautiful tribute to the work of my late grandmother, Upper Skagit elder, founder of Lushootseed Research, Vi taqʷšəbluʔ Hilbert, and the collective wisdom of our ancestors.

The new website is available on-line to the public and easy to navigate. The site provides categories that allow viewers to search information based on their specific interests and offers links to additional resources. The carefully selected video clips provide viewers the unique opportunity to see taqʷšəbluʔ’s graceful poise and eloquence.

It was my grandmother’s dream to fulfill the desires of numerous elders she worked with, to document and share their information so future generations could benefit from their wisdom. It’s a treasure to see the video recordings and hear the voice of my late grandmother, the founder of Lushootseed Research, along with a number of scholars and elders.

I raise my hands in thanks and praise to Jill Linzee, Project Director (NW Heritage Resources), Laurel Sercombe, Curator/Humanist (UW Ethnomusicology Program) and all the other individuals who created this beautiful, educational website. The Voices of the First People website will undoubtedly carry this important information to people all over the world.

To view the Voices of the First People website, go to: http://music.washington.edu/ethno/hilbert.

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