September 21, 1805
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Aug 30, 1803 Sep 30, 1806

September 21, 1805


We were detained this morning untill 11 OCk. in consequence of not being able to collect our horses.    we then set out and proceeded along the ridge on which we had encamped, leaving which at 1½ we passed a large creek runing to the left just above it's junction with another which run parrallel with and on the left of our road before we struck the creek; [1] through the level wide and heavy timbered bottom of this creek we proceeded about 2½ miles when bearing to the right we passed a broken country heavily timbered great quantities of which had fallen and so obstructed our road that it was almost impracticable to proceed in many places.    though these hills we proceeded about 5 Ms. when we passed a small creek [2] on which Capt Clark encamped on the 19th    passing this creek we continued our rout 5 Ms thro' a similar country when we struck a large creek at the forks, [3] passed the Northen branch and continued down it on the West side 1 mile and encamped in a small open bottom [4] where there was tolerable food for our horses. I directed the horses to be hubbled to prevent delay in the morning being determined to make a forced march tomorrow in order to reach if possible the open country. we killed a few Pheasants, and I killd a prarie woolf [5] which together with the ballance of our horse beef and some crawfish [6] which we obtained in the creek enabled us to make one more hearty meal, not knowing where the next was to be found.    the Arborvita [NB: Copy for Dr Barton ] [7] increases in quantity and size. I saw several sticks today large enough to form eligant perogues of at least 45 feet in length.—    I find myself growing weak for the want of food and most of the men complain of a similar deficiency and have fallen off very much.    the general course of this day S 30 W 15 M.—


a fine morning    Sent out all the hunters early in different directions to Kill Something and delayed with the Indians to prevent Suspicion & to acquire as much information as possible.    one of them Drew me a Chart of the river & nations below informed of one falls below which the white men lived from whome they got white beeds cloth &c. &c. The day proved warm, 2 Chifs of Bands visited me to day—    the hunters all returned without any thing, I collected a horse load of roots & 3 Sammon & Sent R Fields with one Indian to meet Capt Lewis    at 4 oClock Set out with the other men to the river, passed thro a fine Pine Country    decended a Steep ruged hill verry long to a Small river which comes from our left and I suppose it to be [blank] River    passed down the river 2 miles on a Steep hill side    at 11 oClock P. M. arrived at a camp of 5 Squars a boy & 2 Children    those people were glad to See us & gave us drid Sammon    one had formerly been taken by the Minitarries of the north & Seen white men, our guide called the Chief who was fishing on the other Side of the river, whome I found a Cherfull man of about 65    I gave him a Medal.


A fine morning    Sent out all the hunters in different directions to hunt deer, I myself delayd with the Chief to prevent Suspission and to Collect by Signs as much information as possible about the river and Countrey in advance. The Cheif drew me a kind of chart of the river, and informed me that a greater Cheif than himself was fishing at the river half a days march from his village called the twisted hare, and that the river forked a little below his Camp [9] and at a long distance below & below 2 large forks one from the left & the other from the right [10] the river passed thro'gh the mountains at which place was a great fall of the water passing through the rocks, [11] to those falls white people lived from whome they preceured the white Beeds & Brass &c. which the womin wore; a Chief of another band visit me to day and Smoked a pipe, I gave my handkerchief & a Silver Cord with a little Tobacco to those Chiefs, The hunters all return without any thing, I purchased as much Provisions as I could with what fiew things I chaned to have in my Pockets, Such a Salmon Bread roots & berries, & Sent one man R. Fields with an Indian to meet Capt. Lewis, and at 4 oClock P M. Set out to the river, met a man at dark on his way from the river to the village, whome I hired and gave the neck handkerchief of one of the men, to polit me to the Camp of the twisted hare, [12] we did not arrive at the Camp of the Twisted hare but oppost, untill half past 11 oClock P M. [13]    found at this Camp five Squars & 3 Children.    my guide called to the Chief who was Encamped with 2 others on a Small island in the river, he Soon joind me, I found him a Chearfull man with apparant Siencerity, I gave him a medal &c. and Smoked untill 1 oClock a. m. and went to Sleep. The Countrey from the mountains to the river hills is a leavel rich butifull Pine Countrey badly watered, thinly timbered & covered with grass— [14]    The weather verry worm after decending into the low Countrey,—    the river hills are verry high & Steep, Small bottoms    to this little river which is Flat head [15] & is 160 yards wide and Sholey    This river is the one we killed the first Coalt on near a fishing were

I am verry Sick to day and puke which relive me.


Saturday 21st Sept. 1805.    a clear pleasant morning.    we could not find all our horses untill about 10 oClock at which time we Set out, and proceed. on    Soon crossed a creek [16] and proceed. on nearly a west course, over a rough trail. Some of the ridges the timber has been killed Some time past by fires, and is fell across the trail So that we have Some difficulty to pass.    towards evening we descended down a Mount. and came on a large creek running S. W.    we came down it a Short distance and Camped    had come 11 miles this day. Capt. Lewis killed a wolf    Some of the party killed three pheasants and a duck.    we eat them and caught a fiw craw fish in the creek and eat them.—


Saturday 21st.    The morning was pleasant; but it was late before we got our horses collected. About 10 o'clock we were ready to start; and passed along the ridge with a great deal of difficulty and fatigue, our march being much impeded by the fallen timber. A great portion of the timber through which we passed along this ridge is dead, and a considerable part fallen; and our horses are weak and much jaded. One of them got into a small swamp, and wet a bale of merchandize. About 4 o'clock in the afternoon we got down the mountain to a creek, [17] which runs nearly southwest. This course we suppose is a very good one for us. We went down this creek about a mile, and encamped on it for the night in a small rich bottom. Here we killed a duck and two or three pheasants; and supped upon them and the last of our horse meat. We also killed a wolf and eat it. The hunters did not join us this evening, nor the two men who went to look for the horse.


Saturday 21st Sept. 1805.    a clear pleasant morning.    we went out eairly to hunt up our horses, but they were much Scatered.    we did not find them all untill about 10 oClock at which time we Set out and proceeded on    crossed a creek & went on a west course over a hilley rough trail.    on Some of the ridges the timber has been killed by fire and fell across the trail So that we had Some difficulty to git a long the trail.    in the after part of the day we descended down a hill & came to the forks of a creek [18] where it is large    we went down it a Short distance and Camped at a good place for feed near the creek.    had Come 11 miles this day.    Capt. Lewis killed a wolf.    Some of the men killed a duck and three Phesants.    we caught Some craw fish in the creek, and eat them.

Saturday Septemr 21st    A Clear pleasant morning, some of our party were sent out to collect our horses.    they found them after much difficulty, which detained us 'till about 10 o'Clock A. M. at which time we set out, & continued on our Journey.    We crossed a Creek, and went on a West course over a hilly rough trail, on a ridge of mountains    The timber on this trail, had been killed by fire, and fell across the path so that we had great difficulty to get along it.    In the afternoon we descended down a hill, & came to the forks of a creek, where the Creek got to be large.—    We went down the Creek a short distance, & encamped at a flatt piece of land which lay along the same Creek, where we found plenty of fine Grass for our horses.    Captain Lewis went out to hunt from this place, and took some of our party with him.    They killed a Wolf, a duck & 3 Pheasants, & some of the party catched some craw fish in the Creek.—    We came about 11 Miles this day.—

1. The first is Eldorado Creek, the second Dollar Creek, in Idaho County, Idaho. Space, 18; Peebles (LT), 9; Atlas map 71. (back)
2. Cedar Creek. Space, 18; Peebles (LT), 9; Atlas map 71. (back)
3. Present Lolo (Collins) Creek. Space, 18; Peebles (LT), 9; Atlas map 71. (back)
4. On Lolo Creek, in Clearwater County, Idaho; the creek is at this point the boundary between Idaho and Clearwater counties. Space 19; Atlas map 71. (back)
5. The coyote, Canis latrans. (back)
6. Some variety of Astacus, crayfish. Pennack, 461. (back)
7. It was apparently Biddle who drew a red vertical line through this material. (back)
8. From this point the entries in the Elkskin-bound Journal become more like those of a regular daily journal. See the Introduction. (back)
9. The junction of the North Fork Clearwater with the main stream, in Clearwater County, Idaho, west of present Orofino. Atlas map 71. (back)
10. The first is probably the Snake River, the second the Columbia. (back)
11. Celilo Falls; see below, October 22, 1805. The chief was probably misinformed about white men living there at the time. Ronda (LCAI), 159. (back)
12. Apparently his name was Walamottinin, meaning "hair of forelock bunched and tied." Josephy (NP), 5 and n. 3. In Nez Perce it is wal̓amotktáynin̓, "with hair carelessly tied." (back)
13. This camp was on the Clearwater River on the "Fishing Island" on fig. 9 and Atlas map 71, about a mile above present Orofino, Clearwater County. Space, 17. While there is no archaeological information on this specific locality of Fish Island, a major concentration of Nez Perces lived at the confluence of the North Fork and the Clearwater because of the salmon fishing. The area has been extensively modified by construction of Dworshak Dam on the North Fork just above the confluence, and an associated fish hatchery at the confluence itself. However, limited archaeological research in the area has exposed archaeological remains extending back several thousand years. Ames; Mattson. (back)
14. Clark is describing parkland vegetation of the ponderosa pine where widely scattered trees appear as in an open park, with drought tolerant grasses covering the spaces between the trees. The dominant grasses of the area are Idaho fescue, Festuca idahoensis Elmer, and bluebunch wheatgrass, Agropyron spicatum (Pursh) Scribn. & Smith, the latter plant being new to science. Küchler, map; Daubenmire, 307; Cutright (LCPN), 306, 408. (back)
15. Their first name for the combination of Whitesand (Killed colt) Creek, Lochsa River, and the Clearwater River; they changed the name later to Kooskooskee River, as on Atlas map 71. The word appears to have been added to a blank space. (back)
16. Either Eldorado Creek or Dollar Creek, Idaho County, Idaho. (back)
17. Lolo Creek, Idaho County, Idaho, which the captains called Collins Creek after John Collins of the party. (back)
18. Lolo Creek, Idaho County, which the captains called Collins Creek after John Collins of the party. (back)