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Jesse O. Sawyer Papers on Yukian Languages

Collection number: SCL Sawyer
Primary contributors:  Laura Somersal (consultant), Jesse O. Sawyer (researcher)
Additional contributors:  Shirley Silver (editor), Richard Dillon (author), Ardis M. Walker (author), Elsie Allen (consultant), Charles Li (author), William J. Wallace (author), Roy Siniard (researcher), Laura Somersal (depicted, participant), William Elmendorf (researcher, editor, author), Donald I. Segerstrom (author), Arthur Anderson (consultant), Sydney M. Lamb (author), Lawrence E. Dawson (author), Norman L. Wilson (author), Jack Wobo (consultant), Jack Werner Stauffacher (editor), Henry Ke'a'a'la Azbill (author), Leland Fullwider Jr. (consultant), Francis A. Riddell (author), Jesse O. Sawyer (participant, author), Harry R. Goff (editor), Carl Schaefer Dentzel (author), Minnie Fulwider (consultant), Bob Western (photographer), William Graves (consultant), Sandra Thompson (author), Dorothea J. Theodoratus (author), Michael Harrison (editor), Don Meadows (author), Alice Shepherd (researcher, donor)
Dates: late 1950s - 1986
Extent: 17.79 linear feet (36 boxes)
Historical information: Jesse O. Sawyer (1918-1986) received his Ph.D. in English and Linguistics at the University of California, Berkeley in 1955. From 1957-1962 he was the director of the English Program for Foreign Students in the Department of Speech at UC Berkeley, then a Senior Lecturer in linguistics from 1962 until his death in 1986. From 1961 onwards he was also the Director of UC Berkeley's Language Lab, now the Berkeley Language Center. Over the course of his career he worked on a variety of topics related to the indigenous languages of California, especially the documentation of Wappo in close cooperation with speaker Laura Fish Somersal.
Scope and content: The Papers document Sawyer's nearly three decades of research on indigenous languages of California, especially members of the Yukian family. The collection includes Wappo field notes collected from the late 1950s to the 1980s and derived materials such as vocabulary files and descriptive and comparative articles. His principal Wappo consultant was Laura Fish Somersal, with additional data provided by Jack Wobo. Sawyer's Yuki consultants were Minnie Fulwider, Arthur Anderson, and Leland Fulwider. The collection also includes Sawyer's notes and linguistic data from other languages of California taken from various published and unpublished sources.
Repository: Survey of California and Other Indian Languages
Preferred citation: Jesse O. Sawyer Papers on Yukian Languages, SCL Sawyer, Survey of California and Other Indian Languages, University of California, Berkeley,
Associated materials: Audio recordings associated with the Papers are in the Berkeley Language Center, Berkeley, California (LA 56, LA 88, LA 90, LA 102).