List of endangered languages in North America

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An endangered language is a language that it is at risk of falling out of use, generally because it has few surviving speakers. If it loses all of its native speakers, it becomes an extinct language.

North America is a continent in the Earth's northern hemisphere and (chiefly) western hemisphere. It is bordered on the north by the Arctic Ocean, on the east by the North Atlantic Ocean, on the southeast by the Caribbean Sea, and on the south and west by the North Pacific Ocean; South America lies to the southeast. It covers an area of about 24,709,000 square kilometers (9,540,000 sq mi), about 4.8% of the planet's surface or about 16.5% of its land area. As of July 2007, its population was estimated at nearly 524 million people.

Canada[edit]

Canada
Language Comments Speakers Source
Beaver language 300 speakers in 1991. Red Book of Endangered Languages
Bella Coola language Also: Nuxalk language 20 (2002 Poser) 700 (1991 Kinkade).
Cayuga language 40 to 60 speakers in 2002. Red Book of Endangered Languages
Chinook Wawa language Also: Chinook Jargon language 83 in Canada (1962 Chafe)Population total all countries: 100.
Northern Haida language See Haida language 30 in Canada (1995 M Krauss)Population total all countries: 45 1,100 in Canada (1995 M Krauss).
Southern Haida language See Haida language 10 (1995 M Krauss) 500 (1995 M Krauss).
Haisla language 25 (1991 M Dale Kinkade) 1,000 (1977 SIL).
Heiltsuk language Hai?zaqvla 300 (1991 M Dale Kinkade).
Han language 7 or 8 in Canada (1997 Krauss) 300.
Kutenai language Kutanaxa 6 in Canada (2002 Poser)Population total all countries: 12.
Maritime Sign Language
Michif language About 600 speakers in 1998. Red Book of Endangered Languages
Munsee language 7 or 8 (1991 M Dale Kinkade) 400 (1991 M Dale Kinkade).
Oneida language fewer than 250 speakers in 1991. Red Book of Endangered Languages
Onondaga language 50 to 100 speakers in 1991. Red Book of Endangered Languages
Potawatomi language 100 speakers Red Book of Endangered Languages
Salish language   Red Book of Endangered Languages
Straits Salish language 20 in Canada (2002 Poser) 3,000 (1977 SIL).
Sechelt language Also: Shishalh language 40 (1990 M.D Kinkade) 550 (1977 SIL).
Sekani language 30 to 40 (1997 Sharon Hargus) 600 (1982 SIL and 1997 S Hargus).
Seneca language 25 speakers in 1991. Red Book of Endangered Languages
Squamish language 15 (2002 Poser) 2,300.
Tagish language 2 (1995 M Krauss) 400 possibly (1995 M Krauss).
Tahltan language 35 (2002 Poser) 750 (1977 SIL).
Tlingit language 145 speakers in Canada in 1998. Red Book of Endangered Languages
Tsuut’ina language Also: Tsuu T'ina language, Sarsi language, Sarcee language 50 (1991 M. Dale Kinkade) Red Book of Endangered Languages
Tuscarora language 7 or 8 in Canada (1991 Kinkade)Population total all countries: 11 to 13.
Western Abnaki language 20 (1991 M Krauss) 1,800 including Eastern Abnaki in USA (1982 SIL).

Mexico[edit]

Mexico
Language Comments Speakers Source
Cocopah language Red Book of Endangered Languages
Ixcatec language 213 speakers in 2006. Red Book of Endangered Languages
Kiliwa language 24 to 32 (1994 SIL).
Lacandon language 44 speakers in 2006. (SIL counted 1000 speakers in 2000?) Red Book of Endangered Languages
Mocho' language   Red Book of Endangered Languages
Atzingo Matlatzinca language see also Matlatzinca 50 to 100 (1993 SIL) 642 (1990 census).
San Francisco Matlatzinca language see also Matlatzinca 1,167 (2000 WCD).
Oluta Popoluca language around 30 speakers Red Book of Endangered Languages
Opata language 15 Population includes 11 in Distrito Federal, 4 in State of Mexico (1993 Instituto Nacional Indigenista).
Texistepec Popoluca language around 400 elderly speakers Red Book of Endangered Languages
Asunción Mixtepec Zapotec language see also Zapotec languages 100 (1990 census) 2,476 (1990 census).
San Agustín Mixtepec Zapotec language see also Zapotec languages 59 (1994 SIL).
Tabasco Zoque language see also Zoque languages 40 (1971 García de León) 367 (1960 census).

USA[edit]

USA
Language Comments Speakers Source
Achumawi language 10 nonfluent speakers (1997 Nevin) 1,000 (1997 Bruce Nevin).
Alutiiq language 30 speakers (2009) 1,000 .
Ahtena language 80 (1995 M Krauss) 500 (1995 M Krauss).
Kiowa Apache language 18 (1990 census) 1,000 (1977 SIL).
Lipan Apache language 2 or 3 (1981 R W Young) 100 (1977 SIL).
Arikara language 20 (1997 Parks) 3,000.
Atsugewi language 3 (1994 L Hinton) 200 (1977 SIL)1,350 with Achumawi (2000 A Yamamoto).
Caddo language 25 (1997 Chafe) 3,371 (1997 W Chafe).
Cahuilla language 7 to 20 (1994 L Hinton) 35 (1990 census).
Chetco language 5 (1962 Chafe) 100 possibly (1977 SIL).
Chinook language 12 speakers of Kiksht dialect (1996) 300 possibly (1977 SIL).
Chinook Wawa language 17 in the USA (1990 census).
Clallam language 10 (1997 Timothy Montler) Several thousands (1997 T Montler).
Coeur d'Alene language 5 (1999 R McDonald) 800 (1977 SIL).
Comanche language less than 130 (less than 1% of 13,000 tribal members as of 2006)
Coos language 1 or 2 (1962 Chafe) 250 (1977 SIL).
Degexit'an language 20 to 30 (1997 Sharon Hargus) 250 to 300 (1997 M Krauss).
Gros Ventre language 10 (1977 SIL)Very few semispeakers in 2000 (2001 Goddard) 1,200 (1977 SIL).
Northern Haida language 15 in the USA (1995 M Krauss) 600 in the USA (1995 M Krauss).
Han language 7 or 8 in Alaska (1995 M Krauss)Population total all countries: 14 300.
Hawai'i Pidgin Sign Language A few users out of about 6,000 profoundly deaf people in Hawaii (1987 Honolulu Star-Bulletin), 72,000 deaf or hard-of-hearing people in Hawaii (1998 Honolulu Advertiser).
Holikachuk language 12 (1995 M Krauss) 200 (1995 M Krauss).
Hupa language 8 (1998 Brook) 2,000.
Kalapuya language 1 or 2 (1962 Chafe).
Kansa language 19 (1990 census) 250 (1986 SIL).
Karok language 10 (1997 William Bright) 1,900 (2000 A Yamamoto).
Kashaya language 45 (1994 L Hinton).
Kawaiisu language 8 to 10 (2000 L Hinton) 35 (2000 A Yamamoto).
Klamath-Modoc language 1 (1998 N.Y Times, April 9, p A20) 2,000 (1997 Scott DeLancey).
Upper Kuskokwim language 40 (1995 Krauss)3 households (1997) 160 (1995 Krauss).
Kutenai language 6 in the USA (2002).
Luiseño language 30 to 40 (2000 L Hinton) 2,000 (2000 A Yamamoto).
Lushootseed language 60 (1990 M D Kinkade)Population evenly divided between the northern and southern dialects 2,000 (1990 M D Kinkade).
Northeast Maidu language 1 to 2 (1994 L Hinton) 108 (1990 census).
Northwest Maidu language 3 to 6 (1994 L Hinton) 200 (1977 SIL).
Mandan language 6 (1992 M Krauss) 400 (1986 SIL and 1997 M Mixco).
Menominee language 39 (3,500 ethnic) (1977 SIL).
Central Sierra Miwok language 12 Population includes 6 Eastern Central Sierra, 6 Western Central Sierra (1994 L Hinton) Possibly 5,000 all Miwok (2000 Yamamoto).
Lake Miwok language 1 to 2 (1994 L Hinton).
Northern Sierra Miwok language 6 (1994 L Hinton).
Plains Miwok language 1 (1962 H Landar in Sebeok 1977).
Southern Sierra Miwok language 7 Southern Central Sierra Miwok (1994 L Hinton).
Mono language Western Mono: 37 to 41 (1994 L Hinton) Population includes 10-12 North Fork, 15 Auberry, 7-8 Big Sandy, 5-6 Dunlap, no Waksachi.
Eastern Mono: 50 (1994 L Hinton)
600 (2000 A Yamamoto).
Nisenan language 1 (1994 L Hinton).
Osage language 5 (1991 M Krauss) 15,000 (1997 Carolyn Quintero).
Panamint language 20 100 (1998 John E McLaughlin).
Pawnee language 20 (1997 Parks) 2,500 (1997 Parks).
Central Pomo language 2 to 5 (1997 Mithun) 4,766 (1997 Mithun).
Southeastern Pomo language 5 (1994 L Hinton).
Southern Pomo language 1 (1994 L Hinton).
Quapaw language 34 (1990 census) 2,000 (1986 SIL).
Quileute language 10 (1977 SIL) 300 (1977 SIL).
Straits Salish language
Serrano language 1 (1994 Coker).
Snohomish language 10 (1998 J Brooke) 800 (1977 SIL).
Tanacross language 35 (1997 G Holton)Population includes 3 in the Healy Lake dialect, 32 in Mansfield-Ketchumstuck 120 (1997 G Holton).
Tanaina language 75 (1997 M Krauss) 900 (1997 M Krauss).
Lower Tanana language 30 (1995 M Krauss) 380 (1995 M Krauss).
Tolowa language 4 to 5 (1994 Hinton) 1,000 (2000 Yamamoto).
Tübatulabal language 6 900 (2000 Yamamoto).
Tuscarora language 4 to 5 in the USA (1997 Mithun) 1,200 in the USA (1997 Mithun).
Tututni language 10 (1962 Chafe).
Wasco-Wishram language 69 (1990 census)7 monolinguals 750 possibly (1977 SIL).
Washo language 10 (1998 J Brooke) 1,500 (2000 A Yamamoto).
Wichita language 3 (2000 Brian Levy) 1,400 (2000 David S Rood).
Wintu language 5 or 6 (1997 Shepherd) 2,244 (1997 Shepherd)
Yokutsan languages 78 speakers of Northern Foothill Yokuts (1990 census) 2,500 (2000 A Yamamoto).
Yuchi language 10 to 12 (1997 Mary Linn) 1,500 (1977 SIL).
Yurok language 12 (2002 Goddard) 3,000 to 4,500 possibly (1982 SIL).

Notes[edit]