The Journals of Lewis & Clark: Clark, March 31, 1806
Clark, March 31, 1806
Monday March 31st 1806
we Set out this morning and proceeded untill 8 oClock when we landed on the N. Side opposit one large House of the Shah-ha-la Nation near this house at the time we passed on the 4th of November last was Situated 25 houses, 24 of them were built of Straw & Covered with bark as before mentioned. those of that description are all distroyed, the one built of wood only remains and is inhabited. we overtook the man whome came to our Camp last night and Soon after we landed two canoes Came over from the opposit Side with 5 men & a woman those people informed us that their relations who was with them last fall reside at the Great rapids, and were down with them last fall gathering Wappato which did not grow above, and also killing deer, that they Secured the bark of the houses which they then lived in against their return next fall. they also inform us that their relations also visit them frequently in the Spring to collect this root which is in great quantities on either Side of the Columbia. at 10 A. M we proceeded on accompanied by one Canoe and three men, one of them appeared to be a man of Some note, dressed in a Salors jacket which had 5 rows of large & Small buttons on it. Those people Speak a differant language from those below, with Some fiew Words the Same, the accent entirely different. their dress and Manners appear very Similar. the women ware the truss or breach clout and Short robes, and men roabs only passed up on the N. Side of White brant Island near the upper point of Which a Small river falls in about 80 yards wide and at this time discharges a great quantity of water. the nativs inform us that this river is very Short and heads in the range of mountains to the N E of its enterance into the Columbia the nativs haveing no name which we could learn for this little river we Call it Seal river from the great number of those Animals which frequents its mouth. this river forks into two nearly equal branches about 1 mile up and each branch is crouded with rapids & falls. we proceed on about 2 miles above the enterance of this Seacalf river and imedeately opposit the upper mouth of the quick Sand river we formed a Camp in a Small Prarie on the North Side of the Columbia where we intend to delay one or two days to make Some Selestial observations, to examine quick sand river, and kill Some meat to last us through the Western Mountains which Commences a fiew miles above us and runs in a N. N. W. & S. S. E. derection. The three Indians encamped near us and visited our fire we entered into a kind of a Conversation by signs, of the Country and Situation of the rivers. they informed us that Seal river headed in the mountains at no great distance. quick Sand river was Short only headed in Mt. Hood which is in view and to which he pointed. this is a circumstance we did not expect as we had heretofore deemed a considerable river. Mount Hood bears East from this place and is distant from this place about 40 miles. this information if true will render it necessary to examine the river below on the South Side behind the image canoe and Wappato islands for some river which must water the Country weste of the western mountains to the Waters of California. The Columbia is at present on a Stand and we with dificuelty made 25 miles to day-.