1889: Amicably settled, in Chinook Jargon

The dialogue in the following incident took place in Chinuk Wawa…can you imagine it?


Sarah “Sairey” Gamp (image credit: The Victorian Web)

Speaking of imagining, Sairey Gamp is a fictional drunken nurse, from Charles Dickens’s novel “Martin Chuzzlewit”.


Amicably Settled.

An elderly Siwash lady who is addicted to Sairey Gamp’s style of tea-pot, when she feels so “dispoged,” caused a ripple of short-lived excitement at the corner of Lorne and Columbia streets this afternoon. From what could be gathered it would appear that a gentleman not unknown to fame in the annals of the police court, gave the lady above mentioned a loan of three dollars and a half, and when the time came to collect the money he walked down to the swamp, where the residence of his debtor is situated, and knocked at the door for admission. This being refused he knocked the door down and otherwise conducted himself in an indecorous manner, making use of language of the same strength as the whiskey he had been drinking; and it was of the sort scientists pickle specimens with. The irate Siwash female immediately came into town, and meeting the chief of police at the spot above mentioned stated her case in choice Chinook, and shook her elderly fist in the face of her creditor. An amicable adjustment of the dispute was arrived at on the spot, and the meeting dissolved mutually satisfied.

— from the New Westminster (BC) Daily British Columbian of December 12, 1889, page 4, column 3

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