The Journals of Lewis & Clark: Lewis, April 12, 1806

Lewis, April 12, 1806

Saturday April 12th 1806. It rained the greater part of last night and still continued to rain this morning. I therefore determined to take up the remaining perogue this morning for which purpose I took with me every man that could be of any service. a small distance above our camp there is one of the most difficult parts of the rapid. at this place the current sets with great violence against a projecting rock. in hawling the perogue arround this point the bow unfortunately took the current at too great a distance from the rock, she turned her side to the stream and the utmost exertions of all the party were unable to resist the forse with which she was driven by the current, they were compelled to let loose the cord and of course both perogue and cord went a drift with the stream. the loss of this perogue will I fear compell us to purchase one or more canoes of the indians at an extravegant price. after breakfast all hands were employed in taking our baggage over the portage. we caused all the men who had short rifles to carry them, in order to be prepared for the natives should they make any attempts to rob or injure them. I went up to the head of the rapids and left Capt. C. below. during the day I obtained a vocabulary of the language of the War-clel-lars &c. I found that their numbers were precisely those of the Chinnooks but the other parts of their language essentially different. by 5 P.M. we had brought up all our baggage and Capt. C. joined me from the lower camp with the Clahclellah cheif. there is an old village situated about halfway on the portage road the fraim of the houses, which are remarkably large one 160 by 45 feet, remain almost entire. the covering of the houses appears to have been sunk in a pond back of the village. this the chief informed us was the residence occasionally of his tribe. these houses are fraimed in the usual manner but consist of a double set as if oune house had been built within the other. the floors are on a level with the ground. the natives did not croud about us in such numbers today as yesterday, and behaved themselves much better; no doubt the precautions which they observed us take had a good effect. I employed sergt. Pryor the greater part of the day in reparing and corking the perogue and canoes. it continued to rain by showers all day. about 20 of the Y-eh-huhs remained with me the greater part of the day and departed in the evening. they conducted themselves with much propryety and contemned the conduct of their relations towards us. We purchased one sheepskin for which we gave the skin of an Elk and one of a deer. this animal was killed by the man who sold us the skin near this place; he informed us that they were abundant among the mountains and usually resorted the rocky parts. the big horned animal is also an inhabitant of these mountains. I saw several robes of their skins among the the evening was rainy cold and far advanced and ourselves wet we determined to remain all night. the mountains are high steep and rocky. the rock is principally black. they are covered with fir of several speceis and the white cedar. near the river we find the Cottonwood, sweet willow, broad leafed ash, a species of maple, the purple haw, a small speceis of cherry; purple currant, goosberry, red willow, vining and white burry honeysuckle, huckkle burry, sacacommis, two speceis of mountain holley, &common ash. for the three last days this inclusive we have made only 7 miles.