The Journals of Lewis & Clark: December 9, 1805

by Meriwether Lewis and William Clark
December 8, 1805
December 10, 1805

December 9, 1805

December 9th Monday 1805

rained all the last night we are all wet, Send 2 men in pursute of the Elk & with the other 3 I Set out with a view to find the Ocian in our first direction, which Can be at no great Distance, I crossed 3 Slashes by wadeing to my knees & was prevented proceeding by the 4th which was a pond of 200 yds. we. I went around, and was Stoped by a 5th which apd. to be a rung Stream to the right. I then returned to the raft and recrossd. & proceeded down the Stream I first Struck about 2 miles & met 3 Indians, who informed me they lived on the See cost at a Short distance, I de-termd. to accompany them to their vilg. & we Set out, crossed the Stream, and 2 of the Indians took the Canoe over the wavering open rich plains for 1/2 a mile and we Crossed the same stream which run to the left, we then left the canoe and proceeded to the Same Stream which runs to the right and empties its Self into the See here I found their vilg. 4 Lodges on the west bank of this little river which is here 70 yards wide, Crossed in a Canoe & was invited to a lodge by a young Chief was treated great Politeness, we had new mats to Set on, and himself and wife produced for us to eate, fish, Lickorish, & black roots, on neet Small mats, and Cramberries & Sackacomey berris, in bowls made of horn, Supe made of a kind of bread made of berries common to this Countrey which they gave me in a neet wooden trencher, with a Cockle Shell to eate it with It began to rain and with a tremendious storm from the S. W. which lasted untill 10 oClock P M- when I was disposd to go to Sleep 2 neet mats was produced & I lay on them but the flees were So troublesom that I Slept but little Those people has 2 plays which they are fond of one is with a Been which they pass from one hand into the other, and the oponent guess on this game the resquist nubr of the white Beeds which is the principal property- they other game is with round Pieces of wood much the Shape of the ____ Backgammon which they role thro between 2 pins.

Monday 9th December 1805

rained all the last night we are all wet, I directed 2 hunters Drewyer & Shannon to go in pursute of the Elk, with the other 3 men I determined to proceed on to the Ocian, & Set out on a Westerley direction Crossed 3 Slashes and arived at a Creek which I could not Cross as it was deep and no wood to make a raft, I proceeded down this Creek a Short distance and found that I was in a fork of the Creek, I then returned to raft on which we had Crossed the day. crossed and kept down about one mile and met 3 Indians loaded with fresh Salmon which they had Giged in the Creek I crossed yesterday in the hills, those indians made Signs that they had a town on the Seacoast at no great distance, and envited me to go to their town which envitation I axcepted and accompand. them, they had a Canoe hid in the Creek which I had just before rafted which I had not observed, we crossed in this little Canoe just large enough to carry 3 men an their loads after Crossing 2 of the Indians took the Canoe on theire Sholders and Carried it across to the other Creek about 1/4 of a mile, we Crossed the 2d Creek and proceeded on to the mouth of the Creek which makes a great bend above the mouth of this Creek or to the S. is 3 houses and about 12 families of the Clat Sop Nation, we cross to those houses, which were built on the S. exposur of the hill, Sunk into the ground about 4 feet the walls roof & gable ends are of Split pine boards, the dotes Small with a ladder to decend to the iner part of the house, the fires are 2 in the middle of the house their beads ar all around raised about 21/2 feet from the bottom flore all covered with mats and under those beads was Stored their bags baskets and useless mats, those people treated me with extrodeanary friendship, one man attached himself to me as Soon as I entered the hut, Spred down new mats for me to Set on, gave me fish berries rutes &c. on Small neet platteers of rushes to eate which was repeated, all the Men of the other houses Came and Smoked with me Those people appeared much neeter in their diat than Indians are Comonly, and frequently wash theer faces and hands- in the eveng an old woman presented a bowl made of a light Coloured horn a kind of Surup made of Dried berries which is common to this Countrey which the natives Call Shele wele this Surup I though was pleasent, they Gave me Cockle Shells to eate a kind of Seuip made of bread of the Shele well berries mixed with roots in which they presented in neet trenchers made of wood. a flock of Brant lit in the Creek which was 70 yds wide I took up my Small rifle and Shot one which astonished those people verry much, they plunged into the Creek and brought the brant on Shorein the evening it began to rain and Continud accompanied with a Violent wind from the S. W. untill 10 oClock P.M. those people have a Singular game which they are verry fond of and is performed with Something about the Size of a large been which they pass from, one hand into the other with great dexterity dureing which time they Sing, and ocasionally, hold out their hands for those who Chuse to risque their property to guess which hand the been is in-; the individual who has the been is a banker & opposed to all in the room. on this game they risque their beeds & other parts of their most valuable effects- this amusement has occupied about 3 hours of this evening, Several of the lodge in which I am in have lost all the beeds which they had about them- they have one other game which a man attempted to Show me, I do not properly understand it, they make use of maney peces about the Shape and size of Backgammon Pices which they role through between two pins Stuck up at certain distancies &.- when I was Disposed to go to Sleep the man who had been most attentive named Cus-ka-lah producd 2 new mats and Spred them near the fire, and derected his wife to go to his bead which was the Signal for all to retire which they did emediately. I had not been long on my mats before I was attacked most violently by the flees and they kept up a close Siege dureing the night