The Journals of Lewis & Clark: Clark, November 21, 1805
Clark, November 21, 1805
Thursday November 21st 1805
a cloudy morning most of the Chinnooks leave our Camp and return home, great numbers of the dark brant passing to the South, the white Brant have not yet commenced their flight. The wind blew hard from the S. E. which with the addition of the flood tide raised verry high waves which broke with great violence against the Shore throwing water into our Camp- the fore part of this day Cloudy at 12 oClock it began to rain and Continud all day moderately, Several Indians Visit us to day of differant nations or Bands Some of the Chiltz Nation who reside on the Sea Coast near Point Lewis, Several of the Clotsops who reside on the opposit Side of the Columbia imediately opposit to us, and a Chief from the Grand rapid to whome we gave a Medal.
An old woman & wife to a Cheif of the Chinnooks came and made a Camp near ours She brought with her 6 young Squars I believe for the purpose of gratifying the passions of the men of our party and receving for those indulgiences Such Small as She (the old woman) thought proper to accept of, Those people appear to view Sensuality as a Necessary evel, and do not appear to abhor it as a Crime in the unmarried State- The young females are fond of the attention of our men and appear to meet the sincere approbation of their friends and connections, for thus obtaining their favours; the womin of the Chinnook Nation have handsom faces low and badly made with large legs & thighs which are generally Swelled from a Stopage of the circulation in the feet (which are Small) by maney Strands of Beeds or curious Strings which are drawn tight around the leg above the anckle, their legs are also picked with different figures, I Saw on the left arm of a Squar the following letters,. Bowmon, all those are Considered by the natives of this quarter as handsom deckerations, and a woman without those deckorations is Considered as among the lower Class they ware their hair lose hanging over their back and Sholders maney have blue beeds threaded & hung from different parts of their ears and about ther neck and around their wrists, their dress other wise is prosisely like that of the Nation of Wa ci a cum as already discribed. a Short roab, and tissue or kind of peticoat of the bark of Cedar which fall down in Strings as low as the knee behind and not So low before maney of the men have blankets of red blue or Spotted Cloth or the common three & 21/2 point blankets, and Salors old Clothes which they appear to prise highly, they also have robes of Sea Otter, Beaver, Elk, Deer, fox and Cat common to this countrey, which I have never Seen in the U States. They also precure a roabe from the nativs above, which is made of the Skins of a Small animal about the Size of a Cat, which is light and dureable and highly prized by those people- the greater numbers of the men of the Chinnooks have Guns and powder and Ball- The Men are low homely and badly made, Small Crooked legs large feet, and all of both Sects have flattened heads- The food of this nation is principally fish & roots the fish they precure from the river by the means of nets and gigs, and the Salmon which run up the Small branches together with what they collect drifted up on the Shores of the Sea coast near to where they live
The roots which they use are Several different kinds, the Wappato which they precure from the nativs above, a black root which they call Shaw-na tah que & the wild licquorish is the most Common, they also kill a fiew Elk Deer & fowl- maney of the Chinnooks appear to have venerious and pustelus disorders. one woman whome I saw at the beech appeared all over in Scabs and ulsers &c.
we gave to the men each a pece of ribin We purchased Cramberies Mats verry netely made of flags and rushes, Some roots, Salmon and I purchased a hat made of Splits & Strong grass, which is made in the fashion which was common in the U States two years ago also Small baskets to hold Water made of Split and Straw, for those articles we gave high prices-.