1884: Sacramento CPE: Chinese jubilation

Here’s a nice eyewitnessed quotation of “that other pidgin”, West Coast-style Chinese Pidgin English, in the late frontier period.

It comes from Sacramento, California, which was one of the earliest major metropolises of the broader Pacific Northwest, having earlier been a fur-trade nexus.

Although an effort is made to explain who Quong Gung was (can any of my readers supply more information?), the newspaper editor follows West Coast custom in not supplying a translation of the quoted CPE:


Chinese Jubilation. — On a balcony on the north side of I street, just above Second, a Chinese band was discoursing music of a fearful and wonderful character yesterday, keeping it up unceasingly from morning until night. Many people imagined that it was intended as a compliment to the great American day, but a Chinaman who was interviewed on the subject explained that it was a demonstration in honor of the birthday of a gentleman named Quong Gung. “You sabbee, he live long time ago — two, tlee thousand year ago — and he mighty good man; yes, he weily good fellow.”

— from the Sacramento (CA) Daily Record-Union of July 5, 1884, page 5, column 1

Kata maika tumtum?
What do you think?