Bill Seward: The Language of Longshoring


Using our language when I was longshoring

by Bill Seward

(at :27 seconds)
hwthey’wiils = longshoring

(at :44)
quxulh s’ul’e’luhwtst yath ’uw’ tl’uw’ hwthey’wiil’s.
Many of our Elders were always longshoring too.

(starting at 1:23)
nilh st’e ’u kw’uw’ hw’iiw’tsustus tu hwunitum’ tu s’ul’eluhw ni’ ’ulh yay’us hwthey’wiil’s.
Our Elders who were working longshoring taught the white people.

hwulmuhwathun ’u kws qwul’qwul’tul’s ’u tu hwunitum’.
They spoke Hulq’um’in’um when talking with the white people.

nilh tu hwunitum’ kwunus hwun’a nem’ yay’us ’i’ hwulmuhwathun ’ kws qwul’qwul’stam’shus.
When I first started working, the white people spoke to me in our native tongue.

nilh kwu’elh nush ni’ st’e ’u kw’uw’ hw’iiw’tsust ’uw’ yath tu hwunitum’
That is the reason now why I teach the white people.

nilh tu t’at mustimuhw,‘’uw’ t’at mustimuhw, ni’ ’uw’ hw’uw’tsust tu hwunitum’ kws qwaqwul’s.
It was our ancestors that started to teach our language to the white people.

tun’a kweyul ’i’ ni’ tst tl’uw’ hw’iiw’tsust tu hwunitum’.
Today, we are also teaching white people.

Story told by Bill Seward.

Transcribed by Theresa Thorne and Donna Gerdts.

Translated by Bill Seward and Donna Gerdts.

Filmed by Chris Bouris

Audio and video post-production by Chris Bouris, Sean Milliken, and Zoey Peterson.

Titles by Donna Gerdts.