July 12, 2012

Lummi Tribe of the Lummi Reservation


The federally recognized Lummi Nation is the third largest tribe in Washington State. The Lummi are the original inhabitants of Washington’s northernmost coast and southern British Columbia. For thousands of years, they have lived on the shores and waters of Puget Sound.

Official Tribal Name: Lummi Tribe of the Lummi Reservation

Address: 2665 Kwina Road, Bellingham, WA 98226
Phone: (360) 312-2260
Fax: (360) 384-0803

Official Website:

Recognition Status: Federally Recognized

Traditional Name / Traditional Meaning:

Lhaq’temish, meaning People of the Sea, or The Lummi People

Common Name / Meaning of Common Name:

Alternate names / Alternate spellings / Misspellings:

Name in other languages:

Region: Northwest Coast

State(s) Today: Washington

Traditional Territory:

The Lummi are the original inhabitants of Washington’s northernmost coast and southern British Columbia. For thousands of years, they have lived on the shores and waters of Puget Sound. The Lummi people traditionally lived near the sea and in mountain areas and returned seasonally to their longhouses located at a number of sites on the present reservation and on the San Juan Islands.

Confederacy: Salish


The Lummi Nation signed the treaty of Point Elliot in 1855 ceding much of their aboriginal lands in western Washington. In return they received a reservation that originally covered 15,000 acres. Today, approximately 12,000 acres remain in Indian control.

Reservation: Lummi Reservation

The reservation occupies a small peninsula between Bellingham Bay and Georgia Strait.The Lummi Reservation is seven miles northwest of Bellingham, Washington, in the western portion of Whatcom County 95 miles north of Seattle. The reservation is a five mile long peninsula which forms Lummi Bay on the west, Bellingham Bay on the east, with a smaller peninsula of Sandy Point, Portage Island and the associated tidelands.
Land Area: 12,000 acres, with 2,126 square miles along Canadian border between Cascade Mountains and Georgia Strait.
Tribal Headquarters: Bellingham, WA
Time Zone: Pacific

Population at Contact:

Registered Population Today:

3,670 as of June 1997.

Tribal Enrollment Requirements:

Genealogy Resources:


Charter: In 1948 the Lummi Nation adopted a Tribal Constitution.
Name of Governing Body: Tribal Council
Number of Council members: 11
Dates of Constitutional amendments: Amended and ratified in 1970, which created the present government structure.
Number of Executive Officers: 4 – Chairman, Vice-Chairman, Secretary, Treasurer


All tribal members are members of the General Council which meets at least once a year at which time one-third of the Tribal Council is elected. The council appoints tribal members to serve on committees that oversee tribal enterprises on behalf of the Council.

Language Classification:

Language Dialects:

Number of fluent Speakers:



Bands, Gens, and Clans: 

Related Tribes:

Traditional Allies:

Traditional Enemies:

Ceremonies / Dances:

Modern Day Events & Tourism:

Lummi Stommish Water Festival in June.

Legends / Oral Stories:

Art & Crafts:





The Lummi Indians were fishermen and semi-sedentary hunter gatherers. Smoke-dried seafood, camas bulbs, sun-dried berries and all species of shellfish, crab, salmon, trout, elk, deer, and other land and sea mammals made up the traditional Lummi diet.

Economy Today:

Food processing, wood products, petroleum refining, manufacturing, and agriculture. Other tribal enterprises include the Lummi Mini Mart, Lummi Fisherman’s Cove, and 260 Tobacco & Fine Spirits .

Religion & Spiritual Beliefs:

They expressed their language and religious traditions through elaborate carvings on totems and ceremonies.

Burial Customs:

Wedding Customs

Education and Media:

Tribal College: Northwest Indian College (NWIC)

Catastrophic Events:

Tribe History: 

In the News:

Further Reading:

US Tribes K to M
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