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

Lewis, August 12, 1806

Thursday August 12th 1806. Being anxious to overtake Capt. Clark who from the appearance of his camps could be at no great distance before me, we set out early and proceeded with all possible expedition at 8 A.M. the bowsman informed me that there was a canoe and a camp he beleived of whitemen on the N. E. shore. I directed the perogue and canoes to come too at this place and found it to be the camp of two hunters from the Illinois by name Joseph Dickson and Forest Hancock. these men informed me that Capt. C. had passed them about noon the day before. they also informed me that they had left the Illinois in the summer 1804 since which time they had been ascended the Missouri, hunting and traping beaver; that they had been robed by the indians and the former wounded last winter by the Tetons of the birnt woods; that they had hitherto been unsuccessfull in their voyage having as yet caught but little beaver, but were still determined to proceed. I gave them a short discription of the Missouri, a list of distances to the most conspicuous streams and remarkable places on the river above and pointed out to them the places where the beaver most abounded. I also gave them a file and a couple of pounds of powder with some lead. these were articles which they assured me they were in great want of. I remained with these men an hour and a half when I took leave of them and proceeded. while I halted with these men Colter and Collins who seperated from us on the 3rd ist. rejoined us. they were well no accedent having happened. they informed me that after proceeding the first day and not overtaking us that they had concluded that we were behind and had delayed several days in waiting for us and had thus been unable to join us untill the present momet. my wounds felt very stiff and soar this morning but gave me no considerable pain. there was much less inflamation than I had reason to apprehend there would be. I had last evening applyed a poltice of peruvian barks at 1 P.M. I overtook Capt. Clark and party and had the pleasure of finding them all well. as wrighting in my present situation is extreemly painfull to me I shall desist untill I recover and leave to my frind Capt. C. the continuation of our journal. however I must notice a singular Cherry which is found on the Missouri in the bottom lands about the beaverbends and some little distance below the white earth river. this production is not very abundant even in the small tract of country to which it seems to be confined. the stem is compound erect and subdivided or branching without any regular order it rises to the hight of eight or ten feet seldom puting up more than one stem from the same root not growing in cops as the Choke Cherry dose. the bark is smooth and of a dark brown colour. the leaf is peteolate, oval accutely pointed at it's apex, from one and a 1/4 to 11/2 inches in length and from 1/2 to 3/4 of an inch in width, finely or minutely serrate, pale green and free from bubessence. the fruit is a globular berry about the size of a buck-shot of a fine scarlet red; like the cherries cultivated in the U States each is supported by a seperate celindric flexable branch peduncle which issue from the extremities of the boughs the peduncle of this cherry swells as it approahes the fruit being largest at the point of insertion. the pulp of this fruit is of an agreeable ascid flavour and is now ripe. the style and stigma are permanent. I have never seen it in blume.