Lewis and Clark Journal Entries - Canoe Camp
The original spelling in the journals has been preserved. The text comes from The Gary E. Moulton's The Journals of the Lewis and Clark Expedition, July 28 to November 1, 1805. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 1988. Pages 234-249.
[Clark] 26th Septr. 1805
Set out early and proceeded on down the river to a bottom oppsit the forks of the river on the South Side and formed a Camp. Soon after our arrival a raft Came down the N. fork on which was two men, they came too, I had the axes distributed and handled and men apotned. [apportioned] ready to commence building of canoes tomorrow, our axes our Small & badly Calculated to build Canoes of the large Pine, Capt Lewis Still very unwell, Several men taken Sick on the way down, I administered Salts Pils Galip, Tartar emetic &c. I feel unwell this evening, two Chiefs and their families follow us and encamp near us, they have great numbers of horses. This day proved verry hot, we purchase fresh salmon from the Indians
[Clark] 27th Septr. 1805
all the men able to work comened building 5 Canoes, Several taken sick at work, our hunters returned Sick without meet. J. Colter returned he found only one of the lost horses, on his way killed a deer, half of which he gave to the Indians the other proved nourishing to the Sick. The day verry hot, we purchase fresh Salmon of them. Several Indians Come up the river from a Camp Some distance below Capt. Lewis very Sick nearly all the men Sick. our Shoshone Indian Guide employed himself makeing flint points for his arrows
[Clark] 28th Septr. 1805
Our men nearly all Complaining of ther bowels, a heaviness at the Stomach & Lax, Some of those taken first getting better, a number of Indians about us gazeing &c. &c. This day proved verry worm and Sultery, nothing killed men complaining of their diat of fish & roots. all that is able working at the Canoes, Several Indians leave us to day, the raft continue on down the river, one old man informed us that he had been to the White peoples fort at the falls & got white beeds &c his Story was not beleved as he Could explain nothing.
[Clark] Oct. 2nd 1805
dispatch 2 men & an Indian up to the village we first Came too to purchase roots fist &c. nothing to eate but roots. gave a small pice of Tobacco to the Indians, 3 broachs & 2 rings with my Handkerchif divided between 5 of them. I walked on the hills to hunt to day, Saw only one deer, Could kill nothing day excesively hot in the river bottom wind North, Burning out the hotter [hollow?] of our canoes, men Something better nothing except a Small Prairie wolf Killed to day, our Provisions all out except what fiew fish we purchase of the Indians with us; we kill a horse for the men at work to eate &c. &c.
[Clark] October 5th 1805
a Cool morning wind from the East, Collected all our horses, & Branded them 38 in No. and delivered them to the men who were to take Charge of them, each of which I gave a Knife & one a wampom Shell gorget . . . . Lanced 2 Canoes to day one proved a little leakey the other a verry good one
[Clark] October 6th 1805
A cool morning wind East for a Short time, which is always a Cool Wind, had a cash made four our Saddles and buried them on the Side of a Pond . . . . finish all of the Canoes late. I am verry Sick all night, Pane in the Stomach & the bowels owing to my diet.
Did You Know?
Salmon is a sacred fish for the Nez Perce. It is sustained them for thousands of years and has shaped their culture and religion. Today the Nez Perce Tribe is playing a leading role in the restoration of wild Salmon runs in the Columbia River Plateau.