Meacham's CJ in Oregon 1870 (please read)

David Robertson drobert at TINCAN.TINCAN.ORG
Wed Mar 31 07:58:39 UTC 1999

Hi, here are more of my interpretations of Meacham.  Thanks again to Aron!
Linguists:  Please make a point of reading through this, especially
"nawitka, ni-hi" below.  Ikta mayka tEmtEm?  --Dave

 *VISIT the archives of the CHINOOK jargon and the SALISHAN & neighboring*
		    <=== languages lists, on the Web! ===>

On Fri, 17 Mar 2000, Aron Faegre wrote:

> p. 53 ki-o-te
> cayote

Note that this seems to have been a new word in English in the 1800's,
just as "canyon" was.  (You'll often see the latter word written <can~on>
as in the original Spanish in books from that time.)  You'll find many
varying spelling of "coyote", including "cayooty" as I've seen in
_Kamloops Wawa_.

> p. 53 council wigwams

Again a "generic Indian" word, I suspect.

> p. 54 Chief How-lish-wam-po of Cayuse, and Chief Wenupswott of the
> Umatillas

Non-Chinook names.

> p. 58 "The Coast Reservation" covering 300 miles of the Pacific
> coast...  It had never been ceded to the Government...

This became split later into two pieces, one agency being at Alsea and the
other at ?Siletz.  Of course, extensive further shrinkage happened.

> p. 58 Clutchmen
> squaws


> p. 59 hollow-tree canoe...white "tyeee" of the "great canoe"


> p. 59 story of Oneatta at Ya Quina Bay

Non-Chinook names.

> p. 61 e-li-he
> home

/IlIhi/, /IlI7i/

> p. 61 ic-tas
> goods


> p. 61 Hal-lu-me, til-li-cum
> strangers

/Xluyma tIlIXEm/ (or spelled as /Xluwima tIlIXEm/).  Delete the comma!

> p. 61 Cla-hoy-em-six, tyee?
> How do you do, Chief?

/lhaXayEm, shiks tayi/ (Move the comma, delete the question mark.)
"Hello, friend chief."

> p. 62 pot-lach dance
> giving dance

/palach tans/

> p. 62 chick-a-mon
> money


> p. 64 The sailors, with the women and maidens, had organized a school,
> on a small scale.  Merry laughter often broke at the clumsy efforts of
> white man's tongue to imitate Indian wa-wa (talk).


> p. 65 pil-pil dance
> a dance in honor of Indian maiden when she "comes out"

/pIlpIl/ "blood".  Presumably the puberty ceremonies.

> p. 68 He spent much time at the e-li-he of the tyee chief...

> p. 68 Mansinetta trees

Not Chinook.

> p. 69 The conference was transferred to the e-li-he of Tyee John...
> [father of Oneatta]

> p. 73 Me-si-ka, is-cum, ni-ka-hi-ak-close, ten-as-cluchman, Oneatta?
> Have you brought back my beautiful daughter, Oneatta?

/mEsayka IskEm nayka hayash lhush tEnEs lhuchmEn Oneatta?/
(Delete the commas, change <hi-ak> to /hayash/.)

> p. 73 Ni-ka-cum-tux Oneatta
> I remember Oneatta

/nayka kEmtEks Oneatta/
"I know Oneatta"

> p. 74 Meacham goes to the Siletz Reservation with U. S. Senator
> Odeneal...Remain overnight at Elk Horn Hotel...took passage in small
> row-boats...To-toot-na-Jack wins rowing contest...

Not Chinook; Tututni (an Oregon Athabaskan tribe).

> p. 84 "Sku-Kum" House
> Guard House

/skukUm haws/

> p. 84 ic-tas
> goods

> p. 87 chick-chick
> wagons

/cIkcIk/, /c'Ikc'Ik/

> p. 88 There were several languages represented in the council; the major
> portion of the Indians understood the jargon, or "Chi-nook," a language
> composed of less than 100 words; partly Indian, Spanish, French, and
> "Boston".  The latter word is in common use among the tribes of Oregon
> and Washington territory to represent white men or American.

/chInuk/, /bastEn/

> p. 89 Si-wash-the
> usual word for Indian

/sawash/, /shawash/

> p. 95 Meacham discusses Alsea Agency, located on the Coast reservation
> south of Yaquina Bay...the people are "salt chuck," or salt-water
> Indians

/salcEqw/, /salt cEqw/, /salt chEqw/ etc.

> p. 114 Jo Hutchins, chief of Santiams

Not Chinook; Santiam Kalapuya tribes.

> p. 115 speeches by Wapto Dave, Jo Hutchins, Black Tom, Solomon Riggs,
> speeches...[all given in English translation]

/waptu/...Solomon Riggs a forebear of Clara Riggs, Grand Ronde, Oregon?

> p. 119 So-chala-tyee
> God sees you

/saXEli tayi/ "God", period.

> p. 119 Alta-kup-et
> I am done

/alta khEpIt/ "now finished"

> p. 124 Indian Neeseka-nan-itch-mi-ka, Is-cum, twenty acres: Nika
> cluchman is-cum, twenty acres; Ni-ka ten-us-cluchman is-cum, ten acres;
> Nika ten-us-man is-cum, ten acres; Ma-mook, sixty acres; Al-ka.
> You see I get twenty acres, my squaw get twenty acres, my daughter get
> ten acres, my son get ten acres, making sixty acres in all.

Indian /mEsayka nanIch, nayka IskEm/ 20 acres; /nayka lhuchmEn IskEm/ 20
acres; /nayka tEnEs lhuchmEn IskEm/ 10 acres; /nayka tEnEs man IskEm/ 10
acres; /mamuk/ 60 acres /alhqi/.  "I, the Indian you're looking at, get 20
acres; my wife gets 20 acres; my daughter gets 10 acres; my son gets 10
acres, making 60 acres then."  (Delete some commas, change some pronouns
that are commonly mistaken by White CJ speakers of the time.)

> p. 124 Spose Misika Capit mamook icta el-i-he, Kau-yua nika is cum,
> seventy acres.
> Suppose you stop surveying, and wait a while, I can get seventy acres,
> maybe eighty acres.

/(s)pus mEsayka khEpIt mamuk Ikta IlIhi, ??qiwa nayka IskEm/ 70 acres.
"If you stop doing [that] thing [with the] ground, because I [can] get 70
acres."  NOTE:  <kau-yua> is an interesting little puzzle...any ideas?

> p. 124 Cum-tux
> understand?


> p. 124 Nika-is-cum, ten-as-man
> I have another boy

/nayka IskEm tEnEs man/  "I've gotten a boy"

> p. 124 Klat-a-wa-ma-mook-elihe
> go on with the survey

/lhatEwa mamuk IlIhi/  "Go work [with the] ground."

> p. 124 Nika is-cum, seventy acres
> I get seventy acres

> p. 129 ictas
> presents

> p. 130 Leander, Clat-a-wa-o-koke-Sun-Siletz.  E-li-he, hi-ka-tum-tum,
> hi-ak-clut-a-ma.
> Leander goes to Siletz, my heart will go with him, to-day.

Leander /lhatEwa ukuk san/ Siletz /IlIhi.  nayka tEmtEm ayaq lhatEwa./
"Leander is going to Siletz Reservation today.  My thoughts run along
[with him]."

> p. 130 Ni-ka-wake-clut-or-wa-niker, min-a-lous.
> If I don't go, I will die.

/nayka weyk lhatEwa, nayka mimlus./  (Change the comma placement.)
"I don't go, I die."

> p. 132 Con-chu-me-si-ka-ka-tum-tum?
> How is your heart now?

/qhata mEsayka tEmtEm?/  (Change the interrogative; /qhanchi/ means "when"
or "how much".)

> p. 132 How-urt-ku-kov-kum-tum-tum-ni-ka.
> My heart is happy now.

/XawElh lhaXayEm tEmtEm nayka/  "It's impossible that I feel pitiful."

> p. 138 Meacham on a river steamer of the Steam Naviation Company
> traveling up Columbia River to Warm Springs and Ya-ha-ma agencies.


> p. 140 Soch-a-la tyee
> God

> p. 142 their wooden graves [captain discussing graves on
> island they are passing]

Generic Indian word...from Eastern North American tribes.

> p. 151 Meacham visits Warm Springs Agency in February, 1870.  Indians
> insist on Tyghe Valley as a home; Government refuses; under threats and
> intimidation, the Indians finally agree to accept home on "Warm Springs
> Reservation".

Non-Chinook word.

> p. 151 John Mission and Billy Chinook

A Wishram or Wasco man.

> p. 151 The Tenino band were in possession of, and had made improvements
> of value near, "The Dalles".


> p. 183 The dance, or hop, was also Boston, with music on a violin by a
> native performer.  The first was an old-fashioned "French four"...


> p. 198 Me-si-ka wake cum-tux ic-ta mamook ni-ka tru-i-tan-klat-a-wa
> you did not know how to make my horse run

/mEsayka weyk kEmtEks Ikta mamuk nayka khiyutEn lhatEwa/  "You did not
know what makes my horse run."  (Note /mEsayka weyk/ instead of normative
word order /weyk mEsayka/.)

> p. 198 Cla-hoy-um, Crabb
> good-bye, Crabb

> p. 202 pic-i-ni-ne
> child

Generic pidgin word/slangy 19th century word for non-White child.

> p. 213 a-cul-tus-sel-le-cum
> a common man

/khEltEs(h) tIlIXEm/  "worthless person", not of chiefly class but
probably not a slave

> p. 214 mum-ook-sul-lux-ic-ta-hi-as-tyee-si-wash
> makes war like a big Indian chief

/mamuk salIks Ikta[,] hayash tayi s(h)awash/  "makes angry things big
chief Indian" (Note:  /khakwa/ "like", following the comma, would be

> p. 224 Meacham meets with Snake chiefs We-ah-we-we, E-ne-gan, and
> O-che-o.

Non-Chinook names.

> p. 245 Meacham journeying to Klamath Agency accompanied by O-che-o,
> Tah-home and Ka-ko-na.  Resume journey from Yai-nax to Klamath Agency.


> p. 263 ...could speak "Boston" quite well...

> p. 265 Now-wit-ka, Ni-ra-nan-itch.
> Yes, I see.  Law not all the time same.  Made crooked.  Made for white
> man.  Ah ha, me see 'em now.

/nawitka, nayka nanIch/  "Indeed, I see."  Note the "Indian Pidgin

> p. 265 Now-witka, Now-witka, Muck-u-lux, Klamath, Mam-ook, Bos-ti-na
> Law, O-ko-ke, Sun.
> Oh, yes!  Oh, yes!  The Klamath Court is now open.

This sounds fake, like an overly literal calque on Anglo-Saxon court
proceedings opening with "Oyez, oyez!" (<Norman French "hear ye, hear
ye!"), misinterpreted perhaps willfully as "Oh yeah, oh yeah!"  NOTE:  <muck-
a-lux> would be Klamath for "people"; see below.  /nawitka, nawitka,/
<muck-a-lux> Klamath /mamuk bastEn la ukuk san./  "Yes, yes, people,
Klamath is making American law today."  Note code-switching.

> p. 268 Now-wit-ka ni-hi
> yes, I do

VERY INTERESTING:  /nawitka, nay hay/?  If so, this could be another
previously overlooked early recording of Grand Ronde CJ in the process of
pidginization ~ creolization.

> p. 279 ko-ho
> Indian game of ball [discussed at length here]
> p. 281 wo-cus
> seed of lily from Klamath marsh used for food
> p. 282 tule
> grass


> p. 289 La-la-cas tribe


> p. 295 Chief Schonchin; Ki-en-te-poos (Captain Jack).
> p. 298 [Ben Wright poisons Indians opposite the "lava bed" on the shore
> of Tu-le Lake in September, 1852.]
> p. 309 Kaw-tuk!
> Stop!


> p. 313 Scarfaced Charlie (says) not him
> ty-ee!...Hal-lu-i-me-til-li-cum (you stranger)!...

You not him /tayi...X(E)luyma tIlIXEm!/  "You aren't his/their
chief...[you are] a stranger!"  Note "Indian Pidgin English" again.

> p. 321 Me-ki-gam-bla-ke-tu
> we won't go there
> p. 321 Ot-we-kau-tux-e
> I am done talking; or, already! or, the time has come! or quit talking.
> p. 322 Tobey Riddle...said in Modoc tongue to her people:  "Mo-lok-a
> ditch-e ham-kouk-lok-e sti-nas mo-na gam-bla ot-we."
> The white chief talks right.  His heart is good or strong.  Go with him
> now!


> p. 331 muck-a-lux
> people

Aha.  Non-Chinook.

> p. 331 Soch-e-la Ty-ee
> the white man sees us

"God", period.  Meacham has a strong idea connecting "God" with being

> p. 332 man-si-ne-ta
> groves


> p. 337 cultus wa-wa
> a big free talk around camp fire

/khEltEs(h) wawa/ "just talking", "talking for the hell of it"

> p. 338 old man Chi-lo-quin

Still a well-known Klamath family name.

> p. 343 Link-river Indians taunting Modocs by calling them hallo-e-me,
> tilli-cum (strangers)...

/X(E)luyma tIlIXEm/

> p. 461 Co-pi, ni-ka
> myself

/khapa nayka/  "to me", "on me"

> p. 499 Bos-tee-na soldiers.  Kot-pumbla!
> The soldiers are coming!

Klamath utterance, I think, with CJ loan word(s).  "Soldiers" may have
been an English loan into CJ, rather than directly into Klamath language;
I find it frequently in _Kamloops Wawa_.

> p. 514 Tuts-ka-low-a?
> How do you do, old man?


>  Te-me-na, Shix-te-wa-tillicums.
> My heart is all right.

<te-me-na> /shiks/ <te-wa> /tILIXEM(s)/
????????    friend  ?????   people
Another mixed Klamath-CJ utterance?

LhaXayEm from

More information about the Chinook mailing list