The Journals of Lewis & Clark: April 8, 1806

by Meriwether Lewis and William Clark
April 7, 1806
April 9, 1806

April 8, 1806

Tuesday April 8th 1806. The wind blew so violently this morning that we were obliged to unlode our perogues and canoes, soon after which they filled with water. being compelled to remain during the day at our present station we sent out some hunters in order to add something to our stock of provision; and exposed our dryed meat to the sun and the smoke of small fires. in the evening the hunters returned having killed a duck only; they saw two bear and some of the blacktailed jumping or fallow deer, such as are found about Fort Clatsop; this kind of deer are scarce in this neighbourhood, the common longtailed fallow deer being most abundant. we have seen the black bear only in this quarter. the wind continued without intermission to blow violently all day. I took a walk today of three miles down the river; in the course of which I had an opportunity to correct an errow which I have heretofore made with rispect to the shrub I have hithertoo called the large leafed thorn. the leaf of this thorn is small being only abut 21/2 inches long, is petiolate, conjugate; the leafets are petiolate accutely pointed, having their margins cut with unequal angular insissures. the shrub which I have heretofore confounded with this grows in similar situations, has a stem precisely like it except the thorn and bears a large three loabed leaf. this bryer is of the class Polyandria and order Polygynia. the flowers are single, the peduncle long and celindric. the calix is a perianth, of one leaf, five cleft, & accutely pointed. the perianth is proper, erect, inferior with rispect to both petals and germen, and equal. the corolla consists of five accute pale scarlet petals, insirted in the recepticle with a short and narrow claw. the Corolla is smooth, moderately long, situated at the base of the germen, permanent, and cup shaped. of the stamens the filaments are subulate, inserted into the recepticle, unequal and bent inwards concealing the pistillum; anther two loabed and inflected situated on the top of the fillaments of the pistillum the germ is conical, imbricated, superior, sessile and short. the styles are short with rispect to the stamen, capillary smooth, obtuse, distributed over the serface of the germ and decid-uous. no perseptable stigma.- late at night the centinel detected an old indian man in attempting to creep into camp in order to pilfer; he allarmed the indian very much by presenting his gun at him; he gave the fellow a few stripes with a switch and sent him off. this fellow is one of a party of six who layed incamped a few hundred yards below us, they departed soon after this occurrence.

Tuesday April 8th 1806

This morning about day light I heard a Considerable roreing like wind at a distance and in the Course of a Short time ways rose very high which appeared to come across the river and in the Course of an hour became So high that we were obliged to unload the canoes, at 7 oClock A.M. the winds Suelded and blew So hard and raised the Waves So emensely high from the N. E and tossed our Canoes against the Shore in Such a manner as to render it necessary to haul them up on the bank. finding from the appearance of the winds that it is probable that we may be detained all day, we Sent out Drewyer, Shannon Colter & Collins to hunt with derections to return if the Wind Should lul, if not to Continue the hunt all day except they killed Elk or bear Sooner &c. we had the dried meat which was cured at our last encampment below exposed to the Sun. John Shields Cut out my Small rifle & brought hir to Shoot very well. the party ows much to the injenuity of this man, by whome their guns are repared when they get out of order which is very often.

I observed an Indian Woman who visited us yesterday blind of an eye, and a man who was nearly blind of both eyes. the loss of Sight I have observed to be more Common among all the nations inhabiting this river than among any people I ever observed. they have almost invariably Sore eyes at all Stages of life. the loss of an eye is very Common among them; blindness in persons of middle age is by no means uncommon, and it is almost invariably a concammitant of old age. I Know not to what cause to attribute this prevalent deficientcy of the eye except it be their exposure to the reflection of the Sun on the water to which they are constantly exposed in the Occupation of fishing. about 1 P M Collins Shannon and Colter returned. Collins Saw 2 bear but could not get a Shot at them. neither Shannon nor Colter Saw any thing worth Shooting. Soon after Drewyer returned haveing only a Summer Duck. the Elk is gorn to the mountains as the hunters Suppose. in the evening late an old man his Son & Grand Son and their Wives &c. Came down dureing the time the waves raged with great fury. the wife of the Grand Son is a woman of differant appearance from any we have Seen on this river, she has a very round head and pierceing black eyes. Soon after those people arived the Old man was detected in Stealing a Spoon and he was ordered away, at about 200 yards below our Camp they built themselves a fire and did not return to our fires after-. The Wind Continued violently hard all day, and threw our Canoes with Such force against the Shore that one of them Split before we Could get it out.