For Immediate release
Contact: Nancy Millette
WHITE PINE ASSOCIATE FOCUSES ON ABENAKI LANGUAGE PRESERVATION
North Haverhill, NH- The non-profit White Pine Association (WPA) for the Koasek Abenaki and in assistance to other
Abenaki Bands within the Abenaki Nation’s alliance has put together an aggressive Abenaki language preservation
program. The White Pine Association have been working for the past two years building a foundation to spring
board what they call the phase one of a long term program into the Abenaki community in way of preservation of
one of the most endangered Native American languages. WPA was able to secure a rare dictionary and a 50 cd set
of the Joseph Aubrey / Joseph Laurent language. Only 200 Abenaki to English dictionaries were printed in 1884.
Last year the WPA was able to secure a rare copy in mint condition. They also were able to secure a 50 cd set of the
same dialect of the language in the fall of 2007. At the present time the WPA is working on a website to host the
audio cd set and a PDF file of the dictionary. The Abenaki enrolled members of the three historic tribes in NH and VT
will have access to the website. And for the elders and members who do not have computer access the WPA will
reproduce the CD set free of charge and mail the set directly to their homes. The language phase one preservation
program will be given free of charge from the WPA to enrolled Abenaki citizens within the Alliance Bands.
The long term goal of the White Pine Association is to be able to host language immersion programs. One of the
problems has always been without a reservation the Abenaki have had a hard time gathering people together for
such programs. For two years the White Pine Association had their eye set on possibly purchasing the old Wells
River School House for a cultural center. With economy being what it is the WPA association voted to invest into the
community phase one program first and put the goal of having a place on the back burner. However, thanks to the
support of many and especially to Beth Mayette the WPA has purchased a large classroom trailer in North Haverhill,
NH to host the programs and have an outreach office.
“We are very excited and grateful for this opportunity,” said Trustees of the White Pine Association. The board
trustees members include: Nancy Millette, Peggy Fullerton, John Prescott, Colleen Chase, Dr. Ray Lussier and Mike
Fenn. All members with the exception of Dr Ray Lussier where born and raised in the Haverhill / Newbury area. The
Abenaki Alliance is made up of the Koasek, Nulhegan, Missiquoi/ Sokoki and El Nu Abenaki Nations and spans the
whole state of Vermont and parts of New Hampshire. The White Pine is centered in the heart of the historical Koas
Meadows of Newbury and Haverhill which was historically the home of the Mission des loups built around 1675 by
Jesuit Joseph Aubrey.
Other programs the White Pine Association has sponsored in the area was Nawihla Native American Festival for the
past two years. For the future the White Pine will be adding on more preservation work and projects as well as
focusing on the language immersion programs. Thanks to the generosity of Beth Mayette for now the classroom
trailer will stay where it is on Main Street North Haverhill. The White Pine Association is in hopes of being able to
secure land where they can expand the trailer into a cultural site with living history projects and other programs
within the communities of Haverhill, NH ande Newbury VT.
For more information contact Nancy Millette Executive Director at 802-392-8006