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Vi Hilbert Collections: Home

This site provides selected access to, as well as information about, collections developed by Vi Hilbert (1918-2008), noted elder of the Upper Skagit tribe.


Vi taqʷšəblu Hilbert

Vi taqʷšəblu Hilbert
Photo courtesy of Jill La Pointe


Vi taqʷšəblu Hilbert (1918-2008) was a member and noted elder of the Upper Skagit tribe.  Her first language was Lushootseed, a Coast Salish language found in the Puget Sound region of western Washington state.  During her long and productive life, Vi Hilbert played a major role in the revitalization of the language and culture of the First People of the Pacific Northwest.  She became known as a teacher, storyteller, publisher, and public speaker.  For over 40 years she built and maintained a research archive of cultural materials.  Working with other scholars, she developed and published teaching materials and volumes of stories through Lushootseed Research, an organization which she founded.  Her commitment to preserving Lushootseed language and literature is largely responsible for the renaissance of interest in Lushootseed culture and the growth of tribal language programs all over western Washington.

This guide provides links to finding aids that describe collections compiled by and associated with Vi Hilbert. It also includes links to selected audio and video recordings. These materials are organized them into 6 categories that highlight aspects of Vi Hilbert’s life and work, focusing on her commitment to the preservation, documentation, and revitalization of Lushootseed language and lifeways: 

  • Stories
  • Talking about stories and traditional knowledge
  • Language work
  • Personal history
  • Talking about Lushootseed culture
  • Talking about The Healing Heart Symphony

Please note that this is just a selection of material from the UW Ethnomusicology Archives. Most audio, video, and related materials have not been digitized and must be accessed on the UW campus. Please contact the curator here

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