The Journals of Lewis & Clark: Lewis, February 7, 1806

Lewis, February 7, 1806

Friday February 7th 1806. This evening Sergt. Ordway and Wiser returned with a part of the meat which R. Fields had killed; the ballance of the party with Sergt. Gass remained in order to bring the ballance of the meat to the river at a point agreed on where the canoe is to meet them again tomorrow morning. This evening we had what I call an excellent supper it consisted of a marrowbone a piece and a brisket of boiled Elk that had the appearance of a little fat on it. this for Fort Clatsop is living in high stile. In this neighbourhood I observe the honeysuckle common in our country I first met with it on the waters of the Kooskooske near the Chopunnish nation, and again below the grand rappids In the Columbian Valley on tidewater. The Elder also common to our country grows in great abundance in the rich woodlands on this side of the rocky Mountains; tho it differs Here in the colour of it's berry, this being of a pale sky blue while that of the U States is a deep perple. The seven bark or nine-bark as it is called in the U States is also common in this quarter. There is a species of huckleberry common to the piny lands from the commencement of the Columbian valley to the seacoast; it rises to the hight of 6 or 8 feet. is a simple branching some what defuse stem; the main body or trunk is cilindric and of a dark brown, while the colateral branches are green smooth, squar, and put forth a number of alternate branches of the same colour and form from the two horizontal sides only. the fruit is a small deep perple berry which the natives inform us is very good. the leaf is thin of a pale green and small being 3/4 of an inch in length and 3/8 in width; oval terminateing more accutely at the apex than near the insertion of the footstalk which is at the base; veined, nearly entire, serrate but so slightly so that it is scarcely perceptible; footstalk short and there position with rispect to each other is alternate and two ranked, proceeding from the horizontal sides of the bough only. The small pox has distroyed a great number of the natives in this quarter. it prevailed about 4 years since among the Clatsops and distroy several hundred of them, four of their chiefs fell victyms to it's ravages. those Clatsops are deposited in their canoes on the bay a few miles below us. I think the late ravages of the small pox may well account for the number of remains of vilages which we find deserted on the river and Sea coast in this quarter.