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Collections Division

Native American Languages

The Native American Languages collection at the Sam Noble Museum of Natural History is a resource center for researchers, educators, and language advocates of Native American languages. Begun in 2002, it consists of a growing number of audio and video recordings, manuscripts, books, and teaching curriculum, lesson plans and materials representing over 72 languages. The unique archive of materials and activities sponsored by the Department are designed to assist Native American communities and teachers in the preservation, instruction, and revitalization of their languages. The Department is intended to be a resource center where the activities of scholars and community members can intersect and develop mutually beneficial relationships. It is also intended to be a place for public education, where visitors can develop an awareness, appreciation, and understanding of the rich cultural and intellectual contributions of Native American languages.

The Department of Native American Languages has four fundamental goals:

  1. To build a collection concentrating on oral and written Native languages of Oklahoma, and incorporating Native languages of North America and endangered languages world-wide.
  2. To carry out research, especially the documentation of indigenous languages that are facing the rapid loss of speakers, and in the formulation, implementation, and evaluation of strategies for reversing the language shift.
  3. To provide services to Native communities and language programs, such recording, archiving and migrating materials, language policy awareness, grant writing, and training in linguistics and Native language teaching and acquisition.
  4. To educate the broader Oklahoma and world community on the history and continued importance of Native languages.

For research requests and more information, please contact Nicholas Wojcik (405-325-3332, email) or Dr. Mary Linn (405-325-7588, email).



Collection Database

What is Linguistic Anthropology?

Restrictive-Use policy

Oklahoma's Native Languages

OK Native American Youth Language Fair

2012 Breath of Life Workshop



Dr. Mary S. Linn, Associate Curator

Nicholas Wojcik, Curator/Archivist I, Collections Manager


Research Associates

Dr. Jason Baird Jackson, Affiliated Research Associate