previous   |   next


       10th September Monday    a Cloudy morning    Set out early under a Gentle Breeze from the S E.    passed two Small Islands one on the L. S. & the other on the S. S. both in the first Course    at 10½ miles passed the lower pt. of Ceder Island  [1] Situated in a bend to the L. S.    this Island is about 2 miles long Covered with red Ceder, the river is verry Shallow opsd. this Island—    below the Island on the top of a ridge we found a back bone with the most of the entire laying Connected for 45 feet    those bones are petrified,    Some teeth & ribs also Connected.  [2]    at 3 mes. above ceder I passed a large Island on the S. S.    to this Island Several Elk Swam    above this Island on the 〈L. S.〉 Midle is Situated 2 Islands small one above the other, those Islands are Called mud Islands  [3] and camped on the upper Island of the[m]  [4] 3 Buffalow 1 Elk &c. Killed to day, river falling



Course Distance & reffurence Sepr 10th. 1804.  [5]

North   5 mes. to a Small Island in a bend to S. S. undr. a bluff of
hard black earth, passd. a Isd. on the L. S.
N. 65 W.   2 me. to a pt. on L. S.    passed the Islands on each side
N. 80 W     ½ mile on the L. Side, (1) a fish bones found on the top of a
hill    Petrefied    45 longuer in form
S 80 W   3 me. to Ceder Island in 〈the middle〉 L. S of this    passed
sand bars
N. 70 W.   8 ½ me. to the lower pt. of an Island in a bend to the L. S.
haveing passed Ceder Island (2) and a large Island on the
S S 〈This Island is covered with Ceders〉 Covered with
timber (3) & many Sand bars    water Shallow.
N. 35° W.   1 me. to the Lower pt. of a 2d Isd. Seprtd. from the first
by a narrow Channel (one remarkable circumstance is
19/20th's of the buffalow seen is Bulls, 〈but〉 the Inds Kill
the Cows.—[)]


       a large Salt Spring of remarkable Salt water much frequented by Buffalow, Some Smaller Springs on the Side of the hill above less Salt, the water excesiv Salt, and is 1½ miles from the river on the 〈N〉 S. W. or L. S. opposit Ceder Island—  [6]

10th Septr


Course Distance & Reffeirenc

North   5 mes. to a Sml. Isd. undr. a Bluff to the S. S.    passed a Isd.
on L. S.
N. 65 W.   2 me. to a pt. on the L. S.    passd. the Isd. on the L. S.
N. 80° W.      ½ me. on the L. S.
S. 80 W.   3 mes. to Ceder Island in the middle of the R: found a fish
back bone Pitrefied also the hd. just below the Isd. on the
top of a hill Situated on the L. S.
N. 70° W.   8 ½ mes. to the Lowr. pt. of an Isd. is a bend to the L. S. pass
the hd. of Ceeder Island at (2) 〈miles〉 and a large Isd. on
the S. S. (3) & many Sand bars.    Shallow
N. 35 W.   1 me. to the Lower pt. of a Small Island Seperated by a nar-
row Channel.



10th September Monday 1804.


       a Cloudy dark morning    Set out early, a Gentle breeze from the S. E, passed two Small Islands on the L. S. and one on the S. S. all in the first Course    at 10½ miles passed the lower point of an (2) Island Covered with red Ceeder Situated in a bend on the L. S.    this Island is about 2 Moles [miles] in length    (1) below this on a hill on the L. S. we found the back bone of a fish, 45 feet long tapering to the tale, 〈Some teeth〉 &c.    those joints were Seperated and all petrefied, opposit this Island 1½ miles from the river on the L. S. is a large Salt Spring of remarkable Salt water.    one other high up the hill ½ me. not So Salt.


       we proceeded on under a Stiff Breeze.    three miles above Ceder Island passed a large Island on the S. S, no water on that Side (3)    Several elk Swam to this Island    passed a Small Island near the Center of the river, of a mile in length, and Camped on one aboav Seperated from the other by a narrow Chanel, Those Islands are Called Mud Islands—    the hunters killed 3 fuffalow & one Elk to day. The river is falling a little, Great number of Buffalow & Elk on the hill Sides feeding    deer Scerce

Sept. 10th  [7]

       On the Lard. side of the river about 2 miles from the river Sergt. Pryor and Drewyer discovered a bold salt spring of strong water—

(Point of Observation No. 40.)
Monday September 10th

       On the Lard. shore, under a high bluff, 2 miles below Ceder Island.—


       Observed Meridian Altd. of Sun symbol's U. L. with Sextant by the fore observtn. 103 53 15


       Latitude deduced from this observtn. [blank]

(Point of Observation No. 41.)
[September 10, 1804]

       On the Stard. shore 4 miles above the point of observation at noon—


       Observed time and distance of Sun symbol's & Moon symbol's nearest limbs, the Sun symbol East.



  h    m      s        
P.M. 4    31    15   76°    55'    15"
  "    34      5     "      56     —
  "    35      7     "      56     30
  "    36    14     "      57     15
  "    37    50     "      57     —
  "    38    54     "      57     30
  h    m      s    
P.M. 5    25    26   77°      9'    15"


       Monday 10th    a foggy morning.    we Set off eairly.    proceeded on.    passed a run & a Bluff on N. S. which is of a hard blue clay & verry rough on the top    (a Small crk on L. Side)    we Sailed on verry well    halted at 12 oClock took dinner. Newman went out on the hills & killed a Deer South Side    we Saw the rack of Bones of a verry large fish  [10]    the Back bone 45 feet long.    passed a high Black Bluff S. S. See 8 Elk Swimming the River. See a nomber of Buffalow.    passed Several Islands & Several Creeks & Sand bars little Timber in the course of the day.    and camped on an Island S. S.  [11]    Sergt. Pryor who walked on Shore to day joined us    informed us that he Saw a large Salt Spring S S 1½ miles from the river, & killed one Buffalow, Corpl. Worvington of the pearogue walked the afternoon on S. S    joined us also killed 2 Buffalow


       Monday 10th.    We had a foggy morning, but moved on early; passed high bluffs on the north side, and saw some timber in the bottom on the south side. At 12 we came to black sulphur bluffs on the south side.  [12] On the top of these bluffs we found the skeleton or back bones of a fish, 45 feet long, and petrified: part of these bones were sent to the City of Washington. One of our sergeants  [13] discovered a large salt spring about a mile and an half from the river. A hunter went up the bank and killed an elk. We left a periogue for the men who were dressing the elk, and proceeded up the north side of the river two miles, when we were obliged to return on account of sand bars, and to take the south side. Here we saw eight elk swimming the river, and had seen a great many buffaloe during the day. We encamped on an island and killed one buffaloe.


       Monday 10th Sept. 1804.    a foggy morning.    we Set off eairly.    proceeded on.    we Saw a ruck of Bones on the Bank S. S. which appeared to be the Bones of a monstrous large fish the Back Bone is 45 feet long.    the hunters killed three Buffalow & a Deer


       Monday September 10th    This morning was foggy, we set out early, and proceeded on; we landed and saw lying on the banks on the South side of the River, the Bones of a monstrous large Fish, the back bone of which measured, forty five feet long.    our hunters returned, having killed 3 Buffalo, and one deer.    We encamp'd on the South side of the River on the bank.—


1. Apparently later known as Little Cedar Island. Atlas maps 7, 20; Nicollet (MMR), 409; MRC map 34; MRY maps 31, 32. (Return to text.)


2. This hill was in Gregory County, South Dakota, in the vicinity of the bend now called Mulehead Point. They had found the fossil remains of a plesiosaur, an aquatic dinosaur of the Mesozoic era. Some of the vertebra apparently are now in the Smithsonian Institution. Robinson, 553; Mattes, 501; Atlas map 20; MRC map 34. (Return to text.)


3. These may include the later Hot Springs, Snag, and Pocahontas islands. Robinson, 553; MRC map 35. (Return to text.)


4. On what was later Pocahontas, or Toehead, Island, between Gregory and Charles Mix counties, South Dakota. It is probably the "I au Vase" on Evans map 2 (Atlas map 8). The area is now inundated by the Fort Randall Reservoir (Lake Francis Case). Robinson, 553; Mattes, 505–6; Atlas map 20; MRC map 35; MRY map 34. (Return to text.)


5. Biddle added "& 13" to indicate that document 53 of the Field Notes goes through September 13. (Return to text.)


6. The springs, in Gregory County, are shown on Atlas map 20 as "Salt Licks." Some letters begin this paragraph, apparently "St. P.—" which could be Sergeant Pryor who related the information. See Lewis notes from Codex Q. (Return to text.)


7. Lewis notes from Codex Q, covering other items than the customary natural history. See n. 6 this day. (Return to text.)


8. Lewis observation from Codex O. (Return to text.)


9. Lewis observation from Codex O, undated, but evidently from the same date as the previous observation, which is probably the noon observation referred to here. (Return to text.)


10. A plesiosaur, an aquatic dinosaur of the Mesozoic era. (Return to text.)


11. On Pocahontas, or Toehead, Island, between Gregory and Charles Mix counties, South Dakota. (Return to text.)


12. At Mulehead Point, Gregory County, South Dakota, where they found the fossil remains of a plesiosaur. (Return to text.)


13. Sergeant Pryor, along with Drouillard. (Return to text.)

previous   |   next

Home  |  Search  |  Read the Journals  |  Additional Texts  |  Images  |  Maps  |  Multimedia
About This Project |  FAQ  |  Links  |  Print Editions  |  Copyright  |  Contact Us  |  Site Map