Nooksack (Lhéchalosem)

Nooksack is a Coast Salishan language spoken along the Nooksack River near the town of Deming in Whatcom County in the northwest of Washington State in the northwest of the USA. The last native speaker, Sindick Jimmy, died in 1988, however Nooksack continued to be spoken as a second language by a small number of people.

A linguist specializing in Salishan languages, Brent Galloway, worked with Sindick Jimmy from 1974 to document the language. He complied a dictionary of Nooksack and wrote the book Nooksack place names: geography, culture, and language, which was published in 2011.

Efforts are being made to revitalise the language. These include the Lhéchalosem Teacher Training Language Immersion Project, which aims to produce teachers of the language and who are familiar with Nooksack culture and traditions, and has been running since the early 2000s.

Nooksack alphabet and pronunciation

Nooksack alphabet and pronunciation

Download an alphabet chart for Nooksack (Excel)

Sample video in Nooksack


Information about the Nooksack Language

Salishan languages

Coeur d'Alene, Comox, Halkomelem, Klallam, Lushootseed, Lillooet, Nooksack, Nuxalk, Okanagan, Saanich, Salish, she shashishalhem, Shuswap, Squamish, Nlaka’pamux (Thompson)

Languages written with the Latin alphabet

Page created: 04.07.23. Last modified: 20.08.23


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