November 27, 1804
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Aug 30, 1803 Sep 30, 1806

November 27, 1804


a cloudy morning after a verry Cold night, the River Crouded with floating ice    wind from the N W.    finished Dobing    Capt. Lewis returned from the Villages with two Chiefs Mar-noh toh & Man-nes-sur ree & a Considerate man with the party who accompanied him, The Menitares, (or Big bellies) were allarmed at the tales told them by the Mandans Viz: that we intended to join the Seaux to Cut off them in the Course of the winter, many Circumstances Combind to give force to those reports i' e' the movements of the interpeters & their families to the Fort, the strength of our work &. &.

all those reports was contridicted by Capt Louis with a Conviction on the minds of the Indians of the falsity of those reports—    the Indians in all the towns & Camps treated Capt Lewis & the party with Great respect except one of the principal Cheifs Mar par pa par ra pas a too or (Horned Weasel) who did not Chuse to be Seen by the Capt. & left word that he was not at home &.

Seven Traders arrived from the fort on the Ossinaboin from the N W Companey    one of which Lafrances [1] took upon himself to speak unfavourably of our intentions &.    the princpal Mr. La Rock , [2] (& Mr. McKensey) [3] was informed of the Conduct of their interpeter & the Consiquinces if they did not put a Stop to unfavourable & ill founded assursions &c. &.

The two Chiefs much pleased with their treatments & the Cherefullness of the party, who Danced to amuse them &c. &c.

The river fall 2 Inches    verry Cold and began to Snow at 8 oClock P M and Continued all night—    Some miss understanding with Jussomm & his woman—    at Day the Snow Seased


Tuesday 27th Nov    cold & chilly, the Ice Ran in the River thick.    we finished dobbing & covering & compleating the remainder of our huts &.C—    Capt Lewis & command brought with them three chiefs from the upper villages of the Grovantaur. [4]    they appear to be verry friendly. Gave us a little corn & were Glad to come & see us.    they Sd. that the Manden nation told them that we would do them harm, & that was the reason they had not been to see us before.    we had a dance this evening. Rivet danced on his head &C

1. Baptiste Lafrance, interpreter for the North West Company, seems to have accompanied Rene Jusseaume to the Mandans as early as 1793. Evans, meeting him there in 1796, had as poor an opinion of him as did Clark. Coues (NLEH), 1:50 n. 56, 301–2, 329, 332; Nasatir (BLC), 1:105, 106, 2:502 and n. 4; Masson, 1:299, 327–28, 351–52. (back)
2. François-Antoine Larocque, born in L'Assomption parish, Quebec, received part of his education in the United States, where he learned English, which he afterwards preferred to French. He joined the XY Company in 1801, and the North West Company when the two merged in 1804, serving as a clerk in the Upper Red River Department. At the time of this trip to the Mandans he was only twenty. He denies, in his account of the trip, the accusations of Lewis and Clark that he attempted to win over the Missouri tribes to the British. Although frustrated in his desire to accompany Lewis and Clark west, he made a trip to the Yellowstone and Bighorn country in 1805, accompanying the Crows from the Hidatsa villages. His is the first European account of the Yellowstone, and of the life and culture of the Crows. He was an observant and literate man, and his accounts of his journeys are valuable in themselves and as complements to those of Lewis and Clark. A successful businessman in Montreal, he spent his last years in religious retreat and study. Wallace, 460; Masson, 1:299–313; Wood & Thiessen, 129–220. (back)
3. Charles McKenzie, born in Scotland, joined the North West Company in 1803, and the Hudson's Bay Company when the two firms merged in 1821. He was not particularly successful and was still a clerk when he retired in 1854. His various accounts of his journeys to the Mandans are important sources on the Missouri tribes and on Lewis and Clark. He found Clark agreeable but judged Lewis to be a strong Anglophobe. Wallace, 476; Masson, 1:299–313, 317–93; Wood & Thiessen, 221–96. (back)
4. According to Clark, they were Hidatsa chiefs Mar-noh-tah or Big Steeler and Man-se-rus-se (Man-nes-surree) or Tail of Calumet Bird, and a prominent, unnamed individual. They were all from the Hidatsa village Metaharta, called the Sakakawea site after Sacagawea who lived there at the time of Lewis and Clark's arrival. (back)