September 1, 1806
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Aug 30, 1803 Sep 30, 1806

September 1, 1806


Musquitors very troublesom last night, we set out at the usial hour and had not proceeded on far before the fog became So thick that we were oblige to come too and delay half an hour for the fog to pass off which it did in Some measure and we again proceded on    R. Jo. Fields and Shannon landed on an Ponceras Island [1] to try to kill Some deer which was Seen on the beech and the 〈remainder of the〉 Canoes all passed them at 9 A. M we passed the enterance of River Quiequur [2] which had the Same appearance it had when we passed up water rapid and of a milky white Colour    about two miles below the Quicurre, 9 Indians ran down the bank and beckened to us to land, they appeared to be a war party, and I took them to be Tetons and paid no kind of attention to them further than an enquirey to what tribe they belonged, they did not give me any answer, I prosume they did not understand the man who Spoke to them as he Spoke but little of their language.    as one Canoe was yet behind we landed in an open Commanding Situation [3] out of Sight of the indians deturmined to delay untill they Came up.    about 15 minits after we had landed Several guns were fired by the indians, which we expected was at the three men behind. I calld out 15 men and ran up with a fill deturmination to Cover them if possible let the number of the indians be what they might. Capt Lewis hobled up on the bank and formed the remainder of the party in a Situation well calculated to defend themselves and the Canoes &c.    when I had proceeded to the point about 250 yards I discovered the Canoe about 1 mile above & the indians where we had left them. I then walked on the Sand beech and the indians came down to meet me    I gave them my hand and enquired of them what they were Shooting at, they informed me that they were Shooting off their guns at an old Keg which we had thrown out of one of the Canoes and was floating down.    those Indians informed me they were Yanktons, [4] one of the men with me knew one of the Indians to be the brother of young Durion's wife. [5]    finding those indians to be Yanktons I invited them down to the boats to Smoke.    when we arived at the canoes they all eagerly Saluted the Mandan Chief, and we all Set and Smoked Several pipes. I told them that we took them to be a party of Tetons and the fireing I expected was at the three men in the rear Canoe and I had went up with a full intention to kill them all if they had been tetons & fired on the Canoe as we first expected, but finding them Yanktons and good men we were glad to See them and take them by the hand as faithfull Children who had opened their ears to our Councils.    one of them Spoke and Said that their nation had opened their years, & done as we had directed them ever Since we gave the Meadel to their great Chief, and Should Continue to do as we had told them we enquired if any of their Chiefs had gone down with Mr. Durion, [6] the answered that their great Chief and many of their brave men had gone down, that the white people had built a house near the Mahar village where they traded. [7]    we tied a piec of ribon to each mans hair and gave them Some Corn of which they appeared much pleased. The Mandan Cheif gave a par of elegant Legins to the principal man of the indian party, which is an indian fashion. [NB: to make presents] [8]    the Canoe & 3 men haveing joined us we took our leave of this party telling them to return to their band and listen to our councils which we had before given to them. Their band of 80 Lodges were on plum Creek [9] a fiew miles to north.    those nine men had five fusees and 4 bows & quivers of arrows.    at 2 P. M we came too on the upper point of bon homme [10] opposit the antient fortification and Sent out men to hunt on each Side and on the island.    and the canoes on each Side of the island to receive any meat might be killed    I walked on the N. E. main Shore found the bottom rich and thickly covered with Peavine rich weed [11] grass interwoven in Such a manner with grape vines that I could not get through and was obliged to assend a high plains the passing through which I also found tiresom.    the grass was nearly as high as my head and the musquitors excessively bad.    at the lower point of the Island all the Canoes & hunters Came together. Labeech killed an Elk only the flesh of which was brought on in the perogue.    at this island we brought 2 years together or on the 1st of Septr. 1804 [12] we Encamped at the lower point of this Island.    after we all Came together we again proceeded on down to a large Sand bar imediately opposit to the place were we met the Yanktons in Council at the Calumet Bluffs and which place we left on the 1t of Septr. 1804. I observed our old flag Staff or pole Standing as we left it.    the musquitors excessively troublesom untill about 10 P. M. when the S W wind became Strong and blew the most of them off.    we came 52 miles to day only with a head wind.    the Country on either Side are butifull and the plains much richer below the Queiquer river than above the river.—


No. 1.—    a wall of the Antient brook Commincing on the bank of the River and running on a direct line S. 76° W. 96 yard, about 75 feet baece and 8 feet high

2.—    Wall Continued and Course S. 84° W. 53 yards from an angle formed by a Slopeing decent No. 13.    has the appearance of a hornwork of nearly the Same hight of the former Angle No. 1—

3.—    the Wall Continued on a Course N. 69° W. for 300 yards in which there is a low part of the wall which is Covered by two Circular and lower walls one back of the other.    8 8    which Covers the gate way Completely, between those outer walls 8 8.    there appears to 〈be〉 have been a Covered way out of the Main work into the Vacaney between those two walls No. 9.—    This wall No. 2 is 8 feet high and about 75 feet Bace

4.—    a wide port of the wall wich is about 12 feet high and 105 feet base on 〈a〉 the Course Continued N. 69° W. 〈for 56 yards〉 from the gateway

5.—    The Wall about 15 feet high and about 90 feet bace on a course N. 32° W. for 56 yds.

6.—    the Wall Continus on a Course N. 20° W for 73 yards and ends abruptly near a whole near Several mounds prismiscutly in the Gorge of the work between this and the river

10. N. 32° W. 96 yards across a low place much lower than the Common leavel of the plain to the Commencement of a Wall of 8 feet high— this is an open Space from whence there is Some appearance of a Covered way to the Water

10    is a large hollow place much lower then the plain

12 12.—    Several little mounds in the gouge

7.    the gateway to the Strong work

14.—    a redoubt Situated on an Island    Which makeing on the Side next to the main work, the wall forming this reboubt is 6 feet high

15 15.—    The river banks at the waters edge

16.—    a thick wall of about 6 feet high passing from the Rivers edge at the gouge of the work perfectly Strieght 〈and ? self〉 to the bend of the River above and there ends abruptly where the Missouri is under mineing its banks— on this wall maney large Cotton Trees of two & 3 feet 〈thi〉 diamieter    this Bank passed thro a wood in it's whole Couse

No. 17 19.—    a Streaght wall of 1830 yard extending from the Gorge of the Strong work on a Course N. 80° W. This wall is 8 feet high to a round pon (No. 18)    from then it becoms lower and Strikes the Missouri at a place where that river has the aptr. of haveing incroached on its banks for a great distance.    this wall passes in it's whole Course thro a leavel plain.

18.—    a Deep pond of 73 yards diamieter in the Wall, perfectly round

20—    This from the extremity of one wall to the other 1100 yards.

21—    a Small redoubt on the bank of the river

The Strong part of this work which must be about ⅔ of it's original Size Contains Twenty acres.—

The part Contained between the two walls is about 500 acres and it Certain that those walls have been longer and must have contained a much greater space—


Monday the 1st day of September 1806.    a fair morning.    we Set out eairly and procd. on    two hunters [14] went on with a Small canoe to hunt    about 9 A. M. we passd. the mo. of rapid water river [15]    a Short distance below we Saw nine Indians on the N. Shore which run out of a thicket    five of them had guns the others bows & arrows.    they Signd. to us to put to shore but we floated a short distance below a point at an open place as we expected they were the Tetons    as Soon as we halted we heard Several guns fire    we expecting that the Indians were fireing at our hunters who were behind Capt. Clark Instantly run up with 10 men but soon returned with the Indians and found that they had been fireing at a kegg we had thrown out above and our hunters came up Safe.    we found these to be Yanktons Nation & good Indians and friends to us    our officers Smoaked with them and gave them a bushel of corn & Some ribben and then we procd. on    towards evening we killed a fat Elk on an Island.    in the evening we Camped on a Sand beach N. Side    opposite to this Camp we Counceled with the yanktons or babruleys [16] on the last of August 1804. Some Musquetoes this evening.


Monday 1st Sept. 1806.    This was a fine pleasant day and we set out early, and about 10 o'clock met nine of the Yonktin band of the Sioux nation of Indians [17] on the south side of the river. We halted and gave them some corn, and then proceeded on with an unfavourable wind. At night we arrived at our encampment of the 31st of August 1804, where we held a treaty with a band of the Sioux nation, and encamped for the night.

1. Between Bon Homme County, South Dakota, and Knox County, Nebraska, at the mouth of Ponca Creek in Nebraska; "Poncar I." on Atlas map 19, evidently the later Pawnee Island. They first passed it on September 5, 1804. Atlas map 19; MRC map 32. (back)
2. The Niobrara River, which joins the Missouri in Knox County, first passed on September 4, 1804. Atlas map 19; MRC map 32. (back)
3. Apparently this was on the Bon Homme County side, since the village of the Indians (see below) was on Emanual Creek. Atlas map 19; MRC maps 31, 32. (back)
4. For the Yanktons, see August 2831, 1804. (back)
5. "Young Durion" was probably Pierre Dorion, Jr.; see August 29, 1804. His wife among the Yanktons was named Holy Rainbow; she was apparently not the same woman who was the only survivor of an 1812 massacre of Astorians on the Boise River in Idaho, in which Pierre died. Speck, 165, 183–85; Irving (Astor), 446–48; Munnick (PD). (back)
6. Pierre Dorion, Sr.; see June 12, 1804. For his assignment to conduct the Yankton delegation to Washington, see August 31, 1804. (back)
7. Presumably the Omaha village near Homer, in Dakota County, Nebraska; see August 13, 1804. Atlas map 16. (back)
8. Biddle added underlining in red ink to "par of elegant Legins . . . of the indian." (back)
9. Emanuel Creek in Bon Homme County, near present Springfield, first passed on September 3, 1804. Atlas maps 7, 19; MRC map 31. (back)
10. Bon Homme Island, now inundated by Lewis and Clark Lake, was between Bon Homme County and Knox County. The party first reached it on September 1, 1804. The "antient fortification" consisted of natural sand ridges which Clark sketched and described on September 2, 1804. On this date, September 1, 1806, Clark again made sketches (figs. 7, 8) and descriptive notes on pp. 81–85 of Codex N. The notes are included as the second entry for this date. Another drawing of the areas appears in the Estimate of Western Indians (fig. 9) and may have been inserted there at about this time. (back)
11. Peavine is probably hog peanut, Amphicarpa bracteata (L.) Fern., and richweed is Pilea pumila (L.) Gray. (back)
12. On August 28September 1, 1804, they had camped at the Calumet Bluff in Cedar County, Nebraska, just below the present Gavins Point Dam, and had counciled with the Yanktons. Now they camped opposite in Yankton County, South Dakota. Mattison (GP), 53–55; Atlas map 18; MRC map 30. (back)
13. These notes accompany Clark's drawings of the "fortification" on Bon Homme Island in Codex N (figs. 7, 8); see previous notes. (back)
14. Perhaps three men, the Field brothers and Shannon, according to Clark. (back)
15. The Niobrara River joins the Missouri in Knox County, Nebraska; the party first passed it on September 4, 1804. (back)
17. Yankton Sioux; see Clark's entries of August 2831, 1804. Gass here passes over some tense moments for the party, described in some detail by Clark and Ordway. (back)