%> Nevada Riches: The Land and People of the Silver State
People & Life Ways
Riches, Ranching & Railroads
(1850-1900)

Native Languages of Nevada

In some Native American communities in Nevada it is difficult to find a fluent native speaker.  In the 1870s and 1880s the federal government attempted to absorb Native Americans into mainstream American culture by eradicating native culture.  The Dawes Severalty Act granted parcels of land to Native Americans in an attempt to make them into farmers, and to assimilate them (or make them a part of) American culture.  As a part of this effort, speaking Native American languages was prohibited in many government sponsored schools, such as the Stewart Indian School in Carson City.  One result of that program, and other factors, is that many native languages are gone forever, and others are threatened with extinction.
 

Photo Credit:
Nevada State Museum