The Journals of Lewis & Clark: Lewis, August 25, 1805
Lewis, August 25, 1805
Sunday August 25th 1805.
This morning loaded our horses and set out a little after sunrise; a few only of the Indians unengaged in assisting us went on as I had yesterday proposed to the Cheif. the others flanked us on each side and started some Antelope which they pursued for several hours but killed none of them. we proceeded within 2 Ms. of the narrow pass or seven miles from our camp of last evening and halted for dinner. Our hunters joined us at noon with three deer the greater part of which I gave the indians. sometime after we had halted, Charbono mentioned to me with apparent unconcern that he expected to meet all the Indians from the camp on the Columbia tomorrow on their way to the Missouri. allarmed at this information I asked why he expected to meet them. he then informed me that the 1st Cheif had dispatched some of his young men this morning to this camp requesting the Indians to meet them tomorrow and that himself and those with him would go on with them down the Missouri, and consequently leave me and my baggage on the mountain or thereabouts. I was out of patience with the folly of Charbono who had not sufficient sagacity to see the consequencies which would inevitably flow from such a movement of the indians, and altho he had been in possession of this information since early in the morning when it had been communicated to him by his Indian woman yet he never mentioned it untill the after noon. I could not forbear speaking to him with some degree of asperity on this occasion. I saw that there was no time to be lost in having those orders countermanded, or that we should not in all probability obtain any more horses or even get my baggage to the waters of the Columbia. I therefore Called the three Cheifs together and having smoked a pipe with them, I asked them if they were men of their words, and whether I could depent on the promises they had made me; they readily answered in the affermative; I then asked them if they had not promised to assist me with my baggage to their camp on the other side of the mountains, or to the place at which Capt. Clark might build the canoes, should I wish it. they acknowledged that they had. I then asked them why they had requested their people on the other side of the mountain to meet them tomorrow on the mountain where there would be no possibility of our remaining together for the purpose of trading for their horses as they had also promised. that if they had not promised to have given me their assistance in transporting my baggage to the waters on the other side of the mountain that I should not have attempted to pass the mountains but would have returned down the river and that in that case they would never have seen anymore white men in their country. that if they wished the white men to be their friends and to assist them against their enemies by furnishing them with arms and keeping their enemies from attacking them that they must never promis us anything which they did not mean to perform. that when I had first seen them they had doubted what I told them about the arrival of the party of whitemen in canoes, that they had been convinced that what I told them on that occasion was true, why then would they doubt what I said on any other point. I told them that they had witnessed my liberality in dividing the meat which my hunters killed with them; and that I should continue to give such of them as assisted me a part of whatever we had ourselves to eat. and finally concluded by telling them if they intended to keep the promisses they had made me to dispatch one of their young men immediately with orders to their people to remain where they were untill our arrival. the two inferior cheifs said that they wished to assist me and be as good as their word, and that they had not sent for their people, that it was the first Chief who had done so, and they did not approve of the measure. Cameahwait remained silent for some time, at length he told me that he knew he had done wrong but that he had been induced to that measure from seeing all his people hungary, but as he had promised to give me his assistance he would not in future be worse than his word. I then desired him to send immediately and countermand his orders; acordingly a young man was sent for this purpose and I gave him a handkerchief to engage him in my interest. this matter being arranged to my satisfaction I called all the women and men together who had been assisting me in the transportation of the baggage and gave them a billet for each horse which they had imployed in that service and informed them when we arrived at the plaice where we should finally halt on the river I would take the billet back and give them merchandize for it. every one appeared now satisfyed and when I ordered the horses loaded for our departure the Indians were more than usually allert. we continued our march untill late in the evening and encamped at the upper part of the cove where the creek enters the mountains; here our hunters joined us with another deer which they had killed, this I gave to the women and Children, and for my own part remained supperless. I observed considerable quantities of wild onions in the bottom lands of this cove. I also saw several large hares and many of the cock of the plains.
Capt. Clark set out early this morning and continued his rout to the indian camp at the entrance of fish Creek; here he halted about an hour; the indians gave himself and party some boiled salmon and hurries. these people appeared extreemly hospitable tho poor and dirty in the extreem. he still pursued the track up the river by which he had decended and in the evening arrived at the bluff on the river where he had encamped on the 21st Inst. it was late in the evening before he reached this place. they formed their camp, and Capt. C. sent them in different directions to hunt and fish. some little time after they halted a party of Indians passed by on their way down the river, consisting of a man a woman and several boys; from these people the guide obtained 2 salmon which together with some small fish they caught and a beaver which Shannon killed furnished them with a plentifull supper. the pine grows pretty abundantly high up on the sides of the mountains on the opposite side of the river. one of the hunters saw a large herd of Elk on the opposite side of the river in the edge of the timbered land.- Winsor was taken very sick today and detained Capt C. very much on his march. three hunters whom he had sent on before him this morning joined him in the evening having killed nothing; they saw only one deer.
The course and the distances, of Capt. Clark's rout down this branch of the Columbia below this bluff, commencing opposite to an Island, are as follow.
This morning while passing through the Shoshone cove Frazier fired his musquet at some ducks in a little pond at the distance of about 60 yards from me; the ball rebounded from the water and pased within a very few feet of me. near the upper part of this cove the Shoshonees suffered a very severe defeat by the Minnetares about six years since. this part of the cove on the N. E. side of the Creek has lately been birned by the Indians as a signal on some occasion.