Jump to Navigation

Ioway-Otoe-Missouria Language Project

Ioway-Otoe-Missouria (Baxoje-Jiwere-?ut^achi) Language Project and Dictionary



As part of its mission to identify, collect, preserve, interpret, and disseminate materials and information pertaining to Kansas history in order to assist the public in understanding, appreciating, and caring for the heritage of Kansas, the Kansas Historical Society is honored to host the Ioway-Otoe-Missouria (Baxoje-Jiwere- Ñut^achi) dictionary. The voluminous results of this project, many years in the making and still ongoing, has been compiled by Jimm GoodTracks, based on the 1992 lexicon published by the University of Colorado Department of Linguistics.

Far more than a simple listing of Ioway-Otoe-Missouria words and their English equivalents, this dictionary embodies the culture and traditions of the people whose languages it defines. In it, a researcher will find not only words but also the contexts of those words and, often, their significance in Ioway-Otoe-Missouria culture. The dictionary is also, to a large degree, an explanation of the traditions and history of the Ioway, Otoe, and Missouria people.

This project is still very much “under construction” with additional explanations to be added as time and resources allow. Users are urged to check back often for updates.

Researchers wishing additional information and sources on the Ioway-Otoe-Missouria languages may wish to visit the Bibliography: Ioway-Otoe-Missouria Language Publications website at http://spot.colorado.edu/~koontz/tracks/jgtiombib.htm, compiled by Mr. GoodTracks, from which the Introductory Remarks, below, were taken.

Introductory Remarks by Jimm G. GoodTracks

The Ioway-Otoe-Missouria Language (Baxoje-Jiwere-Ñut^achi) is a Siouan Language designated as the Chiwere subgroup of Mississippi Valley Siouan. It is similar in many ways to the Winnebago (Hochangara) subgroup, and usually classified with it as a Chiwere-Winnebago subgroup of Mississippi Valley. The last fluent speakers of Ioway-Otoe-Missouria passed away in the winter of 1996, both in their 90s. There are approximately a half dozen semi-fluent speakers that remain, all born during or prior to WWII. The existing tribal entities are usually called Otoe, or Otoe-Missouria, and Ioway. The Missouria were absorbed by the Otoe in 1850s and ceased to be autonomous. The Otoe-Missouria have their tribal offices at Red Rock, Oklahoma (Noble County). The Iowa of Oklahoma offices are located several miles south of Perkins, Oklahoma (Payne County), while the Iowa of Kansas & Nebraska have their tribal complex several miles west of White Cloud, Kansas (Doniphan County).

Whatever dialectal differences existed for the Missouria were for practical purposes lost by the 1900s. Only Ioway and Otoe continue to support dialect-based variation. Mostly these differences are certain phonological oppositions, with only a few vocabulary items being unique to either dialect. All such variation is presently insignificant as far as mutual understanding. Comprehension diminishes between Ioway-Otoe-Missouria and somewhat with Winnebago. Frequent intermarriage among the Ioway and Otoe communities has effected a dialect mixture in the speech of many households, although each community's dialect tends to persevere in its own setting.

Ioway-Otoe-Missouria Grammar (updated July 2011)

Baxoje-Jiwere-Ñut^achi (Ioway-Otoe-Missouria) to English Dictionary

English to Ioway-Otoe-Missouria (Baxoje-Jiwere-Ñut^achi) Dictionary

Visit the Ioway-Otoe-Missouria Language Website maintained by Jimm Goodtracks