Some Tips

  • Start and stop continuous playback with the media player's controls.

  • Play a single line by clicking on that line's number.

  • Use Command+F on a Mac, Control+F on windows, to search for words in the conversation.

  • For video conversations, picture-in-picture can be useful. This puts the video in a separate window, after which you can shrink the originating window in your web browser, allowing more text to be seen on-screen.

  • Safari on a Mac laptop, iPhone or iPad sometimes produces odd results in single line mode.
Video Size
Tlingit Conversation #26
Speakers are Daasdiyaa Nelly Lord and Achkwéi Lena Farkas. Recorded July 19, 2010, at the home of Lena Farkas in Yakutat, Alaska, by Naakil.aan Mark Hans Chester. THIS RECORDING IS CONTINUED FROM # 25.
This material is based on work supported by National Science Foundation grant 0853788 to the University of Alaska Southeast with Ljáaḵkʼ Alice Taff as Principal Investigator, and by National Endowment for the Humanities fellowship 266286-19 to Ljáaḵkʼ Alice Taff. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation or National Endowment for the Humanities.
Tlingit transcription by X̱’aagi Sháawu Keri Eggleston. English translation by Ḵaaḵal.aat Florence Sheakley with Ljáaḵkʼ Alice Taff. Edited by X̱’aagi Sháawu Keri Eggleston and Saḵaayí Anita Lafferty, also by Shagaaw Éesh Devlin Anderstrom.
SYMBOLS: {false start}, (added for clarity), [translator/transcriber's note]. ??? = can’t understand, «Lingít quotation marks» [Time-aligned text for this video was accomplished using ELAN ((Versions 6.0 (2020), 6.1 (2021), and 6.3 (2022) [Computer software]. Nijmegen: Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics, The Language Archive. Retrieved from]
Peel the skin off the willow, and, and she'd send us to the store to get black bull? Blackbull, to make snuff. And she'd take, take us to the smokehouse, build a fire in a can, for, for the ashes for the snuff, to fix with the snuff. And she'd put the, the, uh, Blackbull in a, in uh, one of those oven pans until it got crispy and then she'd, sheʼd mix it with the alders. And that would be their snuff. She had a bowl like made out of wood and she'd, to make the snoose. Oh. When they, we, we used to go to. Lidzée ḵustí. We used to go to, um, Arlene, her mom. She was a real good friend of ours.
Life is hard.
Wáa sá dusáagun?
What was her name?
Yisikóo gé?
Do you know it?
Ethel, her English name.
[personal name]
Oh, yeah, ok.
Á áwéi,
ch'oo Charlie White ḵusteeyée áwé du x̱úx̱.
when Charlie White was still alive, (he) was her husband.
Á áwé aax̱ yaa ntoo.át has du x̱ándáx̱,
So we (were) leaving their place,
wáanganeins {tlél}
we'd run out of things to do
wáanganeins yéi áwé at natoo.átch ḵaachʼoo
sometimes we'd just walk around like that or
tle wéi can ldakát yéide can áwé ḵutoos.ukʼ nuch x̱á; wé mud pies.
weʼd play all over the place (with) a can, you know; those mud pies.
[At shooḵ]
Ch'as du x̱ándáx̱ yaa ntoo.ádee áwé,
Just as we were walking from their house,
gútk' ax̱ jeet akaawatée.
she gave me a little dime.
«Wéide nagú wéit'aa, ah,
“Go over there, uh,
Mrs. Benson éedáx̱ gút yáx̱ a, snuff na.oo,
buy a dime's worth of snuff from Mrs. Benson,
or I'll take you home right now," or something. She threatened me. So I went. Because she knew I'd go there for snuff for my mom.
Áwés aadé kawx̱aatee {wé} wé gút.
So I took that dime over there.
Áwé wé tablespoon, wé one tablespoon for ten cents worth of snuff.
It was one tablespoon, one tablespoon for ten cents worth of snuff.
[At shooḵ]
Aatx̱ x̱wasitee wé gáan.
So Iʼd bring it outside from there.
Tláakw tle s aawatáx'.
They started chewing it right away.
«Ná, wa.éich tsú.»
“Here, you too.”
So I wouldn't tell on them. Next morning, next morning my mom found the stuff in her bed. We used the same bed but you know, under her pillow. We were just kids! Oh dear. She didn't get mad at us either but I know we never did it again.
Awsikóo ách áwé.
She knew, that's why.
She knew.
It burned.
G̱ánch gé yóo duwasáakw?
Is it called tobacco?
G̱ánch, aaá. G̱ánch, aaá.
Tobacco, yes. Tobacco, yes. [Gánch is tobacco. Tuwaakú is snuff. -Anita Lafferty]
Blackbull. Ah shucks. We were still kids yet when they used to. Everybody would go over to Ankau on Memorial Day, before they even built that road going out. The army during World War Two build that road going out there. But before that I remember we went out there on the boat. Everybody would go out on a boat and they'd, they'd take their lunch, you know. And everybody would clean all the, all the graves and then have lunch, like a picnic and come back home. Now everybody goes just whenever they feel like it. And Ḵwáan turned that land over to the city because they had to give a certain percent to the city, of land. And I think it was 80 acres, something like that. And the city has never taken the, never, ever cleaned it. Well, you know, they could hire someone to clean it and keep it up but they never did. In fact when, about maybe five or six years ago, they uh, boy they were going to get land from Ḵwáan and uh, I said, "Well Lowell was still on the board. Go ask him. I know that we turned over a certain amount of, of ah, acres of, land to the city." And the garbage dump was another. We didn't want to give them anything right in town, you know. That was Ḵwáan's land.
Hóochʼ, hóoch' áyá haa aaní haa jeewú. [Anita Lafferty would say: «Hóoch' áwé haa aaní haa jeedáx̱.»]
We don't have land anymore.
Jei wis.
Ḵúnáx̱ has aawatáw.
They stole it from us.
Yeah. [At shooḵ]
{Wáa sá wáa sá at woonei yá} wáa sá duwasáakw
What is it called
x̱ʼoostáak, i x̱'oostáak?
Wáa sá at woonei?
What happened? [To Achkwéiʼs leg]
Ha yóo bathroom-dé yaa nx̱agúdi x̱áayá,
Well, you see, when I was walking to the bathroom,
yáat'át áyáa,
this thing, [her walker]
wé tʼáa(yá),
the wall,
I got too close to the wall áwé, instead of holding on I picked it up and I just fell backwards. Broke here and here.
Wáa sá duwasáakw, "It broke"?
How do you say, “It broke”?
A, ax̱ x̱'ust'áḵl'i áwé
Uh, my ankle
a, wool'éex'.
uh, broke.
Wool'éex', oh.
It broke, oh.
Yáat'aa tsú three years ago wul'éex'in the same way.
The other side also broke, the same place, three years ago the same way.
They just give me this every year but they never told me how to use it. So it costed me both ankles.
Yéi áwé i een sh kax̱wdlineek.
This is how I told the story to you.
[At shooḵ]
Hóoch' ákyá?
Is that all?
Yéi áwé. X̱át ḵu.aa,
That's it. Me though,
Iʼm broke (myself).
[At shooḵ]
Thatʼs the only one I could think of. [Recording break]
[The only word for ʼbrokeʼ he could think of.]
She couldn't eat anymore so I gave her a piece of dry fish. She'd just hold it by her mouth. And I told Steve, I said, "You know, talk about, everybody says they just give us too much leeway on getting substance fishing.These things are our life. My mother took hers to her grave with her." And uh, he said, "Geez." And, and yet these people don't even think of it that much and yet they complain about it. What would they do with it if we had that much, if they could get that much fish and make dry fish out of it? They'd start selling it. That's what they do. And it's true you know.
Tlél, what, what do they say, tlél, tlél dahóon-
[”We don't sell our food,” would be: Tlél duhoon haa atx̱aayí.]
Has akg̱wahóon dáanaa káx̱.
Theyʼre going to sell it for money.
Kʼe aadé shkahaadéex̱ has siteeyi yé; xʼoon, xʼoon countries sáyáa yax̱ yaa s yanalláxw atyátxʼi?
Consider how crazy they are; (in) how many, how many countries are all of the children starving?
Aag̱áa áwéis ch'as wéi
Thatʼs when they
wé wooshji.een has aawaxích x̱á.
really work hard on it together, you know. [In other countries.]
They're, they're just uh, really got into that war over in Afghanistan and Iraq. And here's all these kids starving over there in Haiti and Africa and all those places, you know. Yáat.
And right here. Theyʼre, theyʼre in the United States they, they just, people donʼt realize how many of them are so poor, live from day to day. Anyway. OK?