1892: Yen wakes them up
For its visual interest as much as for the small amount of pidgin, I present today’s selection…
“Yen Wakes Them Up” is the title of this interesting post-frontier piece from northern California about a cholera outbreak (you can click below to go view the full thing large-size):
The door of one of these places on Clay Street was opened yesterday and the stench that came from the place was horrible. The owner positively refused to even read the Consul-General’s proclamation, and said in pigeon English that the filth he had stored away in his den had cost him “hip lot money,” and he was going to keep it there, cholera or no cholera.
— from the San Francisco (CA) Morning Call, August 30, 1892, page 8, columns 1-3
That’s “heap lot money“, typical West Coast-style Chinese Pidgin English.