July 13, 1805
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Aug 30, 1803 Sep 30, 1806

July 13, 1805


This morning being calm and Clear I had the remainder of our baggage embarked in the six small canoes and maned them with two men each. [1] I now bid a cheerfull adue to my camp and passed over to the opposite shore. Baptiest La Page one of the men whom I had reserved to man the canoes being sick I sent Charbono in his stead by water and the sick man and Indian woman accompanyed me by land.    from the head of the white bear Islands I passed in a S. W. direction and struck the Missouri at 3 miles and continued up it to Capt. Clark's camp where I arrived about 9 A. M. and found them busily engaged with their canoes Meat &c.    in my way I passed a very extraordinary Indian lodge, or at least the fraim of one; it was formed of sixteen large cottonwood poles each about fifty feet long and at their larger end which rested on the ground as thick as a man's body; these were arranged in a circular manner at bottom and equally distributed except the omission of one on the East side which I suppose was the entrance to the lodge; the upper part of the poles are united in a common point above and secured with large wyths of willow brush.    in the center of this fabric there was the remains of a large fire; and about the place the marks of about 80 leather lodges. I know not what was the intention or design of such a lodge but certain I am that it was not designed for a dwelling of any one family.    it was 216 feet in circumpherence at the base.    it was most probably designed for some great feast, or a council house on some great national concern. I never saw a similar one nor do the nations lower down the Missouri construct such. [2] The canoes and party with Sergt. Ordway poceeded up the river about 5 miles when the wind became so violent that two of the canoes shiped a considerable quanty of water and they were compelled to put too take out the baggage to dry and clense the canoes of the water.    about 5 P. M. the wi[n]d abated and they came on about 8 miles further and encamped. I saw a number of turtledoves and some pigeons today.    of the latter I shot one; they are the same common to the United States, or the wild pigeon as they are called.    nothing remarkable in the appearance of the country; the timber entirely confined to the river and the country back on either side as far as the eye can reach entirely destitute of trees or brush.    the timber is larger and more abundant in the bottom in which we now are than I have seen it on the Missouri for many hundred miles.    the current of the river is still extreemly gentle. The hunters killed three buffaloe today which were in good order.    the flesh was brought in dryed the skins wer also streached for covering our baggage.    we eat an emensity of meat; it requires 4 deer, an Elk and a deer, or one buffaloe, to supply us plentifully 24 hours.    meat now forms our food prinsipally as we reserve our flour parched meal and corn as much as possible for the rocky mountains which we are shortly to enter, and where from the indian account game is not very abundant. I preserved specemines of several small plants to day which I have never before seen. The Musquetoes and knats are more troublesome here if possible than they were at the White bear Islands. I sent a man to the canoes for my musquetoe bier which I had neglected to bring with me, as it is impossible to sleep a moment without being defended against the attacks of these most tormenting of all insects; the man returned with it a little after dark.—


a fair Calm Morning, verry Cool before day—    we were visited by a Buffalow Bull who came within a fiew Steps of one of the Canoes 〈as〉 the men were at work. Capt. Lewis one man &c. arrived over Land at 9 oClock, the wind rose and blew hard from the S. E. the greater part of the day    both Canoes finished all to Corking & fixing ores &c. &c. The Hunters killed 3 Buffalow the most of all the meat I had dried for to make Pemitigon. The Musquetors & Knats verry troublesom all day & night


July 13th Saturday 1805.    clear and calm this morning.    we loaded the canoes eairly and Set out with all the remainder of our baggage for the upper Camp. [3] Capt. Lewis a Sick man [4] & our Intrepters wife went across by land which is only about 6 miles distant by land and 20 by water    we proceeded on verry well with the canoes about 5 miles.    the wind rose so high that 2 of the canoes took water. it oblidged us to halt and dry our baggage. the wind continued untill towards evening.    then abated a little and we proceeded on about 7 miles and Camped. the Musquetoes verry troublesome in the evening.


Saturday 13th.    A fine day, but high wind. Captain Lewis came up here accompanied by the squaw. He informed us that the canoes had started with all the baggage from the former encampment, which we had called White-bear camp. [5] The musquitoes are very troublesome. This evening the canoes were finished except the putting in some knees.


July 13th Saturday 1805.    clear and calm.    we loaded all the canoes eairly and Set out with all our baggage for the upper Camp.    Capt. Lewis a Sick french man and the Intrepters wife went across by land.    we proceeded on with the canoes abt. 5 miles verry well then the wind rose So high that obledged us to lay too untill towards evening, when the wind abated and we went on about 7 mls. further and Camped.    the Musquitoes verry troublesome untill 9 oClock at night.

Saturday July 13th    A clear and pleasant morning, the Men that were at the lower Camp, loaded the 3 Canoes & set out early for our Camp, Captain Lewis, a frenchman that was sick & our Interpreters Indian Wife, went across by land to the upper Camp, The Men with the 3 Canoes proceeded on about 5 Miles very well, The wind then rose so high, that the Men in the Canoes were obliged to halt untill the middle of the afternoon; they then went on about 7 Miles, when they encamped; where they found the Musketoes very troublesome 'till about 9 oClock this night.—

The falls in the Rivor mesouri, being ascertained by different Men belonging to our party, as well as our Officers, I beg leave to give my readers a full account of the falls of the same.    from its head, Vizt.

to the first great fall is 87 feet Pitch.

to The Second fall lying between 2 falls 19 feet [pitch]

to The Grand Cascade to the upper fall 47 feet 9 Inches

to The upper fall    .    .    .    .    .    .    .    26 [feet] 5—

The Total fall above the portage being 362 feet the River descending the whole way and lies in Latitude 47° 8' 4¾ Seconds North & 2,585 Miles from the mouth of the Mesouri to the [illegible] of the great falls.

1. Ordway notes that he was again in charge of the canoes, and Whitehouse says he was in one of them. (back)
2. The description sounds much like the medicine lodge in which the Blackfeet sun dance was held, except that Lewis does not mention the center pole which was characterisic of this structure. The region they were now in was Blackfeet (specifically Piegan) territory. Ewers (BRNP), 174–84. (back)
3. Clark's canoe-making camp, not the camp at White Bear Islands, which they are now abandoning. (back)
4. Lepage. (back)
5. White Bear Islands camp was an alternate name for the upper portage camp (see June 20). The islands themselves have virtually disappeared. (back)