August 16, 1805
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August 16, 1805


I sent Drewyer and Shields before this morning in order to kill some meat as neither the Indians nor ourselves had any thing to eat. I informed the Ceif of my view in this measure, and requested that he would keep his young men wih us lest by their hooping and noise they should allarm the game and we should get nothing to eat, but so strongly were there suspicions exited by this measure that two parties of discovery immediately set out one on ech side of the valley to watch the hunters as I beleive to see whether they had not been sent to give information of their approach to an enemy that they still preswaided themselves were lying in wait for them. I saw that any further effort to prevent their going would only add strength to their suspicions and therefore said no more.    after the hunters had been gone about an hour we set out.    we had just passed through the narrows when we saw one of the spies comeing up the level plain under whip, the chief pawsed a little and seemed somewhat concerned. I felt a good deel so myself and began to suspect that by some unfortunate accedent that perhaps some of there enimies had straggled hither at this unlucky moment; but we were all agreeably disappointed on the arrival of the young man to learn that he had come to inform us that one of the whitemen had killed a deer.    in an instant they all gave their horses the whip and I was taken nearly a mile before I could learn what were the tidings; as I was without tirrups and an Indian behind me the jostling was disagreeable    I therefore reigned up my horse and forbid the indian to whip him who had given him the lash at every jum for a mile fearing he should loose a part of the feast.    the fellow was so uneasy that he left me the horse dismounted and ran on foot at full speed, I am confident a mile.    when they arrived where the deer was which was in view of me they dismounted and ran in tumbling over each other like a parcel of famished dogs each seizing and tearing away a part of the intestens which had been previously thrown out by Drewyer who killed it; the seen was such when I arrived that had I not have had a pretty keen appetite myself I am confident I should not have taisted any part of the venison shortly.    each one had a peice of some discription and all eating most ravenously.    some were eating the kidnies the melt [1] and liver and the blood runing from the corners of their mouths, others were in a similar situation with the paunch and guts but the exuding substance in this case from their lips was of a different discription.    one of the last who attacted my attention particularly had been fortunate in his allotment or reather active in the division, he had provided himself with about nine feet of the small guts one end of which he was chewing on while with his hands he was squezzing the contents out at the other. I really did not untill now think that human nature ever presented itself in a shape so nearly allyed to the brute creation. I viewed these poor starved divils with pity and compassion    I directed McNeal to skin the deer and reserved a quarter, the ballance I gave the Chief to be divided among his people; they devoured the whole of it nearly without cooking. I now boar obliquely to the left in order to interscept the creek where there was some brush to make a fire, and arrived at this stream where Drewyer had killed a second deer; here nearly the same seene was encored.    a fire being kindled we cooked and eat and gave the ballance of the two deer to the Indians who eat the whole of them even to the soft parts of the hoofs. Drewyer joined us at breakfast with a third deer.    of this I reserved a quarter and gave the ballance to the Indians.    they all appeared now to have filled themselves and were in a good humour.    this morning early soon after the hunters set out a considerable part of our escort became allarmed and returned    28 men and three women only continued with us.    after eating and suffering the horses to graize about 2 hours we renued our march and towads evening arrived at the lower part of the cove    Shields killed an Antelope on the way a part of which we took and gave the remainder to the Indians.    being now informed of the place at which I expected to meat Capt C. and the party they insisted on making a halt, which was complyed with.    we now dismounted and the Chief with much cerimony put tippets about our necks such as they temselves woar I redily perceived that this was to disguise us and owed it's origine to the same cause already mentioned.    to give them further confidence I put my cocked hat with feather on the chief and my over shirt being of the Indian form my hair deshivled and skin well browned with the sun I wanted no further addition to make me a complete Indian in appearance    the men followed my example and we were son completely metamorphosed. I again repeated to them the possibility of the party not having arrived at the place which I expected they were, but assured them they could not be far below, lest by not finding them at the forks their suspicions might arrise to such hight as to induce them to return precipitately.    we now set out and rode briskly within sight of the forks making one of the Indians carry the flag that our own party should know who we were.    when we arrived in sight at the distance of about 2 miles I discovered to my mortification that the party had not arrived, and the Indians slackened their pace. I now scarcely new what to do and feared every moment when they would halt altogether, I now determined to restore their confidence cost what it might and therefore gave the Chief my gun and told him that if his enimies were in those bushes before him that he could defend himself with that gun, that for my own part I was not affraid to die and if I deceived him he might make what uce of the gun he thought proper or in other words that he might shoot me.    the men also gave their guns to other indians which seemed to inspire them with more confidence; they sent their spies before them at some distance and when I drew near the place [2] I thought of the notes which I had left and directed Drewyer to go with an Indian man and bring them to me which he did.    the indian seeing him take the notes from the stake on which they had been plased I now had recource to a stratagem in which I thought myself justifyed by the occasion, but which I must confess set a little awkward.    it had it's desired effect.   after reading the notes which were the same I had left I told the Chief that when I had left my brother Chief with the party below where the river entered the mountain that we both agreed not to bring the canoes higher up than the next forks of the river above us wherever this might happen, that there he was to wait my return, should he arrive first, and that in the event of his not being able to travel as fast as usual from the difficulty of the water, that he was to send up to the first forks above him and leave a note informing me where he was, that this note was left here today and that he informed me where he was, that this note was left here today and that he informed me that he was just below the mountains and was coming on slowly up, and added that I should wait here for him, but if they did not beleive me that I should send a man at any rate to the Chief and they might also send one of their young men with him, that myself and two others would remain with them at this place.    this plan was readily adopted and one of the young men offered his services; I promised him a knife and some beads as a reward for his confidence in us.    most of them seemed satisfyed but there were several that complained of the Chief's exposing them to danger unnecessarily and said that we told different stories, in short a few were much dissatisfyed. I wrote a note to Capt. Clark by the light of some willow brush and directed Drewyer to set out early being confident that there was not a moment to spare.    the chief and five or six others slept about my fire and the others hid themselves in various parts of the willow brush to avoid the enimy whom they were fearfull would attack them in the course of the night. I now entertained various conjectures myself with rispect to the cause of Capt. Clarks detention and was even fearfull that he had found the river so difficult that he had halted below the Rattlesnake bluffs. I knew that if these people left me that they would immediately disperse and secrete themselves in the mountains where it would be impossible to find them or at least in vain to pursue them and that they would spread the allarm to all other bands within our reach & of course we should be disappointed in obtaining horses, which would vastly retard and increase the labour of our voyage and I feared might so discourage the men as to defeat the expedition altogether.    my mind was in reallity quite as gloomy all this evening as the most affrighted indian but I affected cheerfullness to keep the Indians so who were about me.    we finally laid down and the Chief placed himself by the side of my musquetoe bier. I slept but little as might be well expected, my mind dwelling on the state of the expedition which I have ever held in equal estimation with my own existence, and the fait of which appeared at this moment to depend in a great measure upon the caprice of a few savages who are ever as fickle as the wind. I had mentioned to the chief several times that we had with us a woman of his nation who had been taken prisoner by the Minnetares, and that by means of her I hoped to explain myself more fully than I could do by signs. some of the party had also told the Indians that we had a man with us who was black and had short curling hair, this had excited their curiossity very much.    and they seemed quite as anxious to see this monster as they wer the merchandize which we had to barter for their horses.

at 7 A M. Capt. C. set out after breakfast.    he changed the hands in some of the canoes; they proceeded with more ease than yesterday, yet they found the river still rapid and shallow insomuch that they were obliged to drag the large canoes the greater part of the day.    considerable quantities of the buffaloe clover grows along the narrow bottoms through which they passed.    there was no timber except a few scatiring small pine on the hills.    willow service berry and currant bushes were the growth of the river bottoms.    they geathered considerable quantities of service berries, and caught some trout.    one deer was killed by the hunters who slept out last night.    and did not join the party until 10 A. M. Capt. Clark sent the hunters this evening up to the forks of the river which he discovered from an eminence; they mus have left this place but a little time before we arrived.    this evening they encamped on the Lard. side only a few miles below us. [3]    and were obliged like ourselves to make use of small willow brush for fuel.    the men were much fatigued and exhausted this evening.

Courses and distances traveled by Capt. Clark
August 16th 1805.
S. 18° W. 3 to a Lard. bend under a low bluff, distance by water 7 M.
the river bending to the Stard. under some high land, very
crooked narrow shallow and small.    passed several Islands
4 of which were opposite to each other.    called this service
berry Valley
, from the great abundance of that fruit found
S. 12° W. 2 to a high Clift on the Stard. side, distance by water 4 M.
passed several Islds. and bayous on either Side.
S. 50° W. 1 to the entrance of a bold running stream on Lard. side, dis-
tance by water 2½ M.    at this place there is a very consider-
able rapid and clifts near on both sides
S. 45° W.    ½ mile to the lower point of an Island near the center of the
Valley and river.
Miles 6 ½  

as this morning was cold and the men fatigued Stiff and Chilled deturmined me to detain & take brackfast before I Set out. I changed the hands and Set out at 7 oClock    proceeded on Something better than yesterday for the fore part of the Day    passed Several rapids in the latter part of the day near the hills river    passed between 2 hills    I saw a great number of Service berries now ripe.    the Yellow Current are also Common    I observe the long leaf Clover [4] in great plenty in the vallie below this vallie—    Some fiew tres on the river    no timber on the hills or mountn. except a fiew Small Pine & Cedar. [5] The Thmtr. Stood at 48° a. 0 at Sunrise wind S W. The hunters joined me at 1 oClock, I dispatched 2 men to prosue an Indian roade over the hills for a fiew miles, at the narrows I assended a mountain from the top of which I could See that the river forked near me    the left hand appeared the largest & bore S. E.    the right passed from the West thro' an extensive Vallie, I could See but three Small trees in any Direction from the top of this mountain.    passed an Isld. and Encamped ion the Lard. Side the only wood was Small willows


Friday 16th August 1805.    a clear morning but verry cold.    the Thurmometer Stood at 47°.    the water So cold that we delayed until after we took breakfast.    one hunter out this morning.    2 hunters Stayed out last night.    we proceeded on as usal.    passed a handsom Spring run [6] on L. Side. Some timber on it.    we find the current Swift the river Shallow    we are oblidged to hall the large canoes the most of the time. Capt. Clark our Intrepter & wife walked on Shore and found a great quantity of Servis berrys the largest & best I ever Saw.    they gethered a pale full &C. Gave them out to the party at noon where we halted to dine at a grove of cotton trees on L. Side. Saw a nomber of bald & grey Eagles &C.    our hunter who went out this morning killed a verry large buck.    the bottoms on the River narrow    we name this place Servis berry valley.    the 2 hunters who Stayed out last night joined us here and informed us that the River forks [7] again only about 6 miles by land from this & that each fork was Shallow.    2 hunters sent on to the forks to hunt    we proceeded on    passed up Sholes & rapids    towards evening we passed up a verry bad rockey rapid which was difficult to pass over.    we were oblidged to waid and hale the canoes over the large rocks &C.    we passed a fine Spring on S. Side and a run [8] on L. Side    high clifts of rocks & hills on each Side    found pleanty of currents on the banks.    the water not So Swift above the bad rapid.    we Came [blank] miles and Camped on a narrow bottom on L. Side    no timber.    we gethered Small willow Sticks only to boil our vension.    the beaver very pleanty &C—


Friday 16th.    We did not set out till after breakfast, and while here one of the men went out and killed a fine buck. We proceeded through rapid water; the river is very narrow, crooked and shallow. This morning we passed a place where the hills come close to the river for a short distance, and then open on each side of a small valley, which, on account of the great quantity of service berries in it, we called Service-berry valley. We passed over a rapid of about a quarter of a mile, and encamped [9] on the South side, having come 15 miles.


Friday 16th August 1805.    a clear but verry cold morning.    the Thurmometer Stood at 47°.    the water So cold that we delayed untill after breakfast.    one hunter out on a head.    we proceeded on as usal    the current Swift    passed a handsom Spring run [10] on L. Side on which is a fiew cotton trees.    Capt. Clark our Intrepter & wife walked on Shore and found a great nomber of fine berrys which is called Servis berrys.    our Ints. wife gethered a pale full & gave them to the party at noon where we halted at a grove of cotton trees on L. S.    our hunter who went out this morning killed a verry large buck.    two of our hunters Stayed out last night, & have not returned yet    we name this place Servis valley, from the abundance of these berrys along under the hills &c.    the 2 hunters joined us here & Informed us that the River forks [11] in about 5 miles a Strait course by land & they think we can go no further than the forks with the crafts.    2 hunters Sent on to the forks to kill meat.    we proceeded on over verry Shallow & Swift water    passed up a verry bad rockey rapid where we had to waid up to our middle & hale the canoes over the rapid.    Saw Several fine Springs & a run above the bad rapid    passed high clifts of rocks and high hills on each Side.    found pleanty of currents    the water not So bad above the rapid.    Came [blank] miles this day and Camped on a narrow bottom on L. Side.    no timber    we could Scarsely find any but Small willow to boil our venison

Friday August 16th    We had a Clear, but very cold morning, the Thermometer stood at 47°—    from 0, and the water in the River so cold, that we delayed starting 'till after breakfast; One of our hunters was sent on a head, We proceeded on our Voyage at 8 o'Clock A. M. the Current of the River running very strong,—    We passed a handsome spring run, lying on the South side of the River, near to which was a few Cotton wood trees.    Our interpreters Wife (the Indian Woman) went on Shore & found a great number of fine berries, which is call'd service berries.    the Indian Woman gathered a pailfull of those berries, which she brought to our party at noon, where we had halted which was at a Grove of Cotton trees lying on the South side of the River.    Our hunter that went out this morning, killed a very fine buck Deer, which he brought to us.    Two of our Hunters that went out Yesterday had not yet returned.    This place being a Valley, Captain Clark named 〈this place〉 it Service Valley, on account of the number of berries, that grew in it called Service berries, Our two hunters that were out came to us, just as we were starting; and informed us that the River forked about 5 Miles ahead, on a strait Course by land, and that it is their opinion, that we can go no further than those forks with our crafts, Captain Clark dispatch'd two of our hunters off, to those forks, to provide some Meat for us, against we arrived there.    We proceeded on at 2 oClock P. M. & found the River running very Rapid & shallow.    We passed up a bad Rapid which was very Rockey; the party had to wade up to their middles in Order to hall the Canoes over it.—

We saw several fine springs, & a run which lay above this bad rapid, and high Clifts of rocks & high hills lying on both sides of the River; We found a great plenty of currants, growing along the Shore, The current of the River did not run so strong, nor the River is not so shallow above the rapids, as it was for some distance below.—    We came 13 Miles this day, and encamped in a narrow bottom, lying on the South side of the River.    We found no timber here, and was obiged to use small dry Willow bushes, for fuel to boil our meat

1. The spleen. (back)
2. The junction of Horse Prairie Creek and Red Rock River to form Beaverhead River. Atlas map 66. (back)
3. This camp does not appear on Atlas map 66. It was in Beaverhead County, Montana, four miles by Clark's estimate below the forks of the Beaverhead and the present Clark Canyon Dam. (back)
4. Clark's "long leaf Clover" is the same as Lewis's "buffaloe clover" of this day and of August 8. The term long leaf describes the elongate, trifoliate leaflets of the mountain thermopsis. The species is common in this area growing in wet meadows as described. Since the plant was in fruit at this time of the year and lacked the typical flower head of a clover, Lewis apparently chose the term "buffalo" to distinguish either its tall stature or grazing preference by bison, and Clark chose the descriptive "long leaf" to note the long leaflets, atypical of other clover or Trifolium species. Booth & Wright, 138. (back)
5. The small pine is the limber pine and the cedar is Rocky Mountain juniper. Both species grow together on the rocky slopes above the Beaverhead River in this area and in similar habitats in the region. Pfister et al., 17. (back)
6. Perhaps the "bold run" on Atlas map 66, which may be Gallagher Creek, Beaverhead County, Montana. (back)
9. In Beaverhead County, Montana, about four miles below the forks of the Beaverhead and Clark Canyon Dam. (back)
11. The forks of the Beaverhead; see the next day's entry. (back)