Intellectual House

Intellectual House Courtyard View



View the latest photos of the construction process, as well as the August 6 Log Blessing.

The UW broke ground on wǝɫǝbʔaltxʷ, Oct. 25, 2013, celebrating a significant milestone in the 40-year dream to build a longhouse on campus. Read more here.

The schematic design, site plan and floor plan have been approved for the Intellectual House. Read more here.

Design and Construction for Intellectual House Begins. Read more here.

Snoqualmie Indian Tribe pledges $100,000 to support the Intellectual House. Read more here.

UW Interim President Phyllis M. Wise has pledged $5 million in matching gift funds toward the $10.6 million needed to build the Intellectual House if $5 million can be raised by the end of 2011. Make a gift towards this total here.

UW Regents approve traditional naming of the House of Knowledge to Wǝɫǝbʔaltxʷ, which translates to “Intellectual House” in the Lushootseed language and is phonetically pronounced “wah-sheb-altuh”. Read the details here.

Jones & Jones have been selected as the architects for the Intellectual House. Their predesign for the project was completed in June 2010. See their work here.

Yakama Nation to donate materials valued at $91,000 to the Intellectual House. Read the details here.

Viewpoints magazine features the Intellectual House project in its Fall 2008 issue. Read the whole article here.


About wǝɫǝbʔaltxʷ


The University of Washington and the region’s tribes are leading an effort to build the wǝɫǝbʔaltxʷ – Intellectual House, a longhouse-style facility at the University’s Seattle campus. Its mission is “to provide a multi-service learning and gathering space for Native American students, faculty and staff, and others of various cultures and communities to come together in a supporting and welcoming educational environment to share their knowledge and their cultures with one another.”

A primary purpose of wǝɫǝbʔaltxʷ – Intellectual House is to increase Native American students’ success at UW, preparing them for leadership roles in their tribal communities and the region. While the UW has made promising gains in recruiting Native American students, retention and graduation rates for Native American students fall short of those of other student groups, both at UW and at colleges across the country. wǝɫǝbʔaltxʷ – Intellectual House will support students’ ability to remain involved in their home tribes and communities through its social and academic programs and its symbolic design. We envision that tribal elders and community members will gather together at wǝɫǝbʔaltxʷ – Intellectual House for dialogue, storytelling, and sharing knowledge with our students.

Funding for the project has been provided through the UW, individual gifts, organizations and communities, corporations and foundations, and government organizations. The site is located on the Northeast section of the campus, between the Quad and MacMahon Hall. A site blessing was performed on Friday, April 10, 2009. View the blessing agenda and a brief history of blessing ceremonies here. A groundbreaking ceremony took place on Oct. 25, 2013. The longhouse will open in March, 2015.

PLEASE NOTE: wǝɫǝbʔaltxʷ – Intellectual House is not yet taking reservations for use of its event space, but will do so soon. Please check back for updates.

Traditional Name Pronunciation

The traditional name for wǝɫǝbʔaltxʷ – Intellectual House comes from the Lutshootseed language and is phonetically pronounced “wah-sheb-altuh.”

(Click to hear it pronounced)

Recording was provided by Jill K. La Pointe, MSW ’88, of the Upper Skagit and Nooksack Tribes. She is the granddaughter of the late Vi Hilbert, a revered Lushootseed linguist.

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