From The Journals of Lewis Clark RE: This Land!

Here is a link to more info, plus some excerpts below.



July 11, 1806

Beautiful Plain

“the morning was fair and the plains looked beatifull the grass much improved by the late rain. the air was pleasant and a vast assemblage of little birds which croud to the groves on the river sung most enchantingly. we set out early.”
Meriwether Lewis

10000 Buffalo

“when I arrived in sight of the whitebear Islands the missouri bottoms on both sides of the river were crouded with buffaloe I sincerely belief that there were not less than 10 thousand buffaloe within a circle of 2 miles arround that place.”
—Meriwether Lewis

Buffalo Hunting

“I directed the hunters to kill some buffaloe as well for the benefit of their skins to enable us to pass the river as for their meat for the men I meant to leave at this place. we unloaded our horses and encamped opposite to the Islands.”
—Meriwether Lewis

Building Bull Boats

“I then set all hands to prepare two canoes the one we made after the mandan fassion with a single skin in the form of a bason and the other we constructed of two skins on a plan of our own. we were unable to compleat our canoes this evening.”
—Meriwether Lewis

July 12, 1806

Missing Horses

“the remaining ten of our best horses were absent and not to be found. I fear that they are stolen . . . . at Noon Werner returned having found three others of the horses near Fort Mountain [Square Butte] . . . . I now dispatched Joseph Fields and Drewyer in quest of them. the former returned at dark unsuccessfull and the latter continued absent all night.”
Meriwether Lewis

Crossing in Bull Boats

“the wind abated and we transported our baggage and meat to the opposite shore in our canoes which we found answered even beyond our expectations. we swam our horses over also and encamped at sunset. quetoes extreemly troublesome.”
—Meriwether Lewis

July 13, 1806

The White Bear Islands

“removed above to my old station opposite the upper point of the white bear island. formed our camp and set Thompson &c at work to complete the geer for the horses.”
Meriwether Lewis

A Flooded Cache

“had the cash opened found my bearskins entirly destroyed by the water, the river having risen so high that the water had penitrated. all my specimens of plants also lost. the Chart of the Missouri fortunately escaped.”
—Meriwether Lewis

Wet Papers and Medicines

“opened my trunks and boxes and exposed the articles to dry. found my papers damp and several articles damp. the stoper had come out of a phial of laudinum and the contents had run into the drawer and distroyed a gret part of my medicine in sucuh manner that it was past recovery.”
—Meriwether Lewis

More Worries

“waited very impatiently for the return of Drewyer he did not arrive. Musquetoes excessively troublesome insomuch that without the protection of my musquetoe bier I should have found it impossible to wright a moment.”                                                   —Meriwether Lewis

July 14, 1806

Wheels and Iron-framed Boat

“Had the carriage wheels dug up found them in good order. the iron frame of the boat had not suffered materially.”
Meriwether Lewis

Cous Meal

“had the meat cut thiner and exposed to dry in the sun. and some roots of cows [Cous Root] of which I have yet a small stock pounded into meal for my journey. I find the fat buffaloe meat a great improvement to the mush of these roots.”
—Meriwether Lewis

Scaffolding the Trunks

“the old cash being too damp to venture to deposit my trunks &c in I sent them over to the Large island and had them put on a high scaffold among some thick brush and covered with skins. I take this precaution lest some indians may visit the men I leave here before the arrival of the main party and rob them.”
—Meriwether Lewis

Numerous Wolves

“the wolves are in great numbers howling arround us and loling about in the plains in view at the distance of two or three hundred yards. I counted 27 about the carcase of a buffaloe.”
—Meriwether Lewis

July 15, 1806

Checking on Lower Portage Camp

“Dispatched McNeal early this morning to the lower part of portage in order to learn whether the Cash and white perogue [pirogue] remained untouched or in what state they were . . . . a little before dark McNealreturned with his musquet broken off at the breech.”
Meriwether Lewis

McNeal Clubs Grizzly

“on his arrival at willow run he had approached a white bear within ten feet without discover him the bear being in the thick brush, the horse took the allarm and turning short threw him immediately under the bear; this animal raised himself on his hinder feet for battle, and gave him time to recover from his fall which he did in an instant and with his clubbed musquet he struck the bear over the head and cut him with the guard of the gun and broke off the breech, the bear stunned with the stroke fell to the ground and began to scratch his head with his feet; this gave McNeal time to climb a willow tree which was near at hand and thus fortunately made his escape.”
—Meriwether Lewis

Horses Remain at Large

“at 1 P. M. Drewyer returned without the horses and reported that after a diligent surch of 2 days he had discovered where the horses had passed Dearborn’s river at which place there were 15 lodges that had been abandoned about the time our horses were taken”
—Meriwether Lewis

Mosquitoes Torment Seaman

“the musquetoes continue to infest us in such manner that we can scarcely exist; for my own part I am confined by them to my bier at least ¾ths of my time. my dog [Seaman] even howls with the torture he experiences from them, they are always most insupportable, they are so numerous that we frequently get them in our thrats as we breath.”
—Meriwether Lewis

July 16, 1806

Leaving for the Marias

“sent Drewyer and R. Fields with the horses to the lower side of Medecine [Sun] river, and proceeded myself with all our baggage and J. Fields down the missouri to the mouth of Medecine river in our canoe of buffaloe skins [bull boat].”
Meriwether Lewis

Lunch at Rainbow Falls

“having arrived safely below Medicine river we immediately sadled our horses and proceeded down the river to the handsom fall [Rainbow Falls] of 47 feet where I halted about 2 hours and took a haisty sketch of these falls;”
—Meriwether Lewis

Revisiting the Grand Fall

“these falls have abated much of their grandure since I first arrived at them in June 1805, the water being much lower at preset than it was at that moment, however they are still a sublimely grand object . . . . we spent this evening free from the torture of the Musquetoes.”
—Meriwether Lewis


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