No "jazz" in Alaska

Bapopik at AOL.COM Bapopik at AOL.COM
Tue Jul 2 02:38:12 UTC 2002

   According to one theory (Bert Kelly), "jazz" was spoken in Alaska around the turn of the century.  I've looked before, and I looked at the Valdez newspapers today.  I didn't find it.

10 February 1917, VALDEZ WEEKLY MINER, "A CHEECHACO'S VIEWS ON ALASKA," pg. 8, col. 4:
  Slang is almost unknown, but the necessities of a novel situation have of course led them to adopt new words unknown in the East, although some are used else where.  A "sourdough" is an old Alaskan; a poke, an old English word; a "cheechaco" is a newcomer; a "Cywash" is an Indian.  This word is a corruption of the French "sauvage."  To "mush" is to travel on foot.  This is derived from the French verb "marcher."  An obedient dog, when told to mush will leave the premises. (...)

17 March 1912, VALDEZ WEEKLY MINER, pg. 6, col. 4:
   Whitehorse, March 16.  With the angle worm wriggle, the grizzly bear dance, the turkey trot and other risque dances, the rage outside since many of the soiurdoughs last saw an electric car, a typical Alaskan dance has evolved here.
   The new terpsichorean step has been named the "Ice-Worm Wiggle."  Although the dance has not been given in public yet, it is said to be very bizarre in its nature, recalling the old Dawson dance hall days.

28 November 1917, VALDEZ DAILY PROSPECTOR, pg. 1, cols. 3-4 photo caption:
   "M-M-M!  Turkey for Thanksgiving!"
(See "mmm" in ADS-L archives--ed.)

More information about the Ads-l mailing list