1859: Hias cumtux!

[Edited to correct my early-morning misreading! hayu masi to Alex, Norbert, and Darrin.]

An early Oregon newspaper notice is about half Chinook!

hias cumtux

Hias Cumtux.

ALL persons indebted to me are requested to potlatch black hiack.


Feb. 1, 1859.

— from the Salem (OR) Weekly Oregon Statesman of February 15, 1859, page 3, column 4

Hias Cumtux should mean something like ‘loudly hear’ in decent Chinuk Wawa. However, (A) I’ve found a couple other quotations using this expression to mean ‘understand perfectly’, and (B) I suspect these two words are being used as loans in English, so then we might take them like a ‘big notice’.

“Potlatch black” seems like ‘give (until I’m in the) black’, i.e. till I’m no longer in debt. Maybe “black” is just a misprint of “back”, though! Nope, it’s “potlatch hiack” = ‘give fast’, that is, ‘pay me back soon’. English-speaking Settlers tended to express ‘pay’ by potlatch chickamin (‘give money’).

qʰata mayka təmtəm?
What do you think?