The Journals of Lewis & Clark: October 31, 1804

by Meriwether Lewis and William Clark
October 30, 1804
November 1, 1804

October 31, 1804

31st of October Wednesday 1804 The main Chief of the mandans Sent 2 Cheifs for to envite us to Come to his Lodge, and here what he has to Say I with 2 interpetes walked down, and with great Cerimony was Seated on a Robe by the Side of the Chief; he threw a Robe highly decoraterd over my Sholders, and after Smokeing a pipe with the old men in the Circle, the Chief Spoke he belived all we had told him, and that peace would be genl. which not only gave himself Satisfaction but all his people; they now Could hunt without fear & their women could work in the fields without looking every moment for the ememey, as to the Ricaras addressing himself to the Chief with me you know we do not wish war with your nation, you have brought it on your Selves, that man Pointing to the 2d Chief and those 2 young warriers will go with you & Smoke in the pipes of peace with the Ricaras- I will let you see my father addressing me that we wish to be at peace with all and do not make war upon any- he continud to Speak in this Stile (refer to notes) he delivered 2 of the Traps to me which was taken from the french men, gave me 2 bushels of Corn, I answered the Speech which appeared to give general Satisfactionand returned to the boat, In the evening the Chief Visited us Dressed in his new Suit, &delayed untill late the men Dancd untill 10 oClock which was common with them wrote to the N W Copanys agent on the Ossinniboin River by a Mr. McCruckin.

31st of October Wednesday 1804

a fine morning, the Chief of the Mandans Sent a 2d Chief to invite us to his Lodge to recive Some Corn & here what he had to Say I walked down and with great ceremoney was Seeted on a roab by the Side of the Chief, he threw a handsom Roabe over me and after smokeing the pipe with Several old men arround, the Chief Spoke Said he believed what we had told them, and that peace would be general, which not only gave him Satisfaction but all his people, they now Could hunt without fear, & ther womin Could work in the fields without looking everry moment for the Enemey, and put off their mockersons at night, as to the Reares we will Show you that we wish peace with all, and do not make war on any without Cause, that Chief pointing to the 2d and Some brave men will accompy. the Ricare Chief now with you to his village & nation, to Smoke with that people, when you Came up the Indians in the neighbouring Villages, as well as those out hunting when they heard of you had great expectations of reciving presents they those hunting imediately on hearing returned to the Village and all was Disapointed, and Some Dessatisfied, as to himself he was not much So but his Village was- he would go and See his great father &c. &c.

he had put before me 2 of the Steel traps which was robed from the french a Short tim ago. about 12 bushels of Corn which was brought and put before me by the womin of the Village after the Chief finished & Smoked in great cerrimony, I answered the Speech which Satisfied them verry much and returned to the boat. met the princapal Chief of the 3d Village and the Little Crow both of which I invited into the Cabin and Smoked & talked with for about one hour. Soon after those Chiefs left us the Grand Chief of the Mandans Came Dressed in the Clothes we had given with his 2 Small Suns, and requested to See the men Dance which they verry readily gratified him in,- the wind blew hard all the after part of the day from the N E and Continud all night to blow hard from that point, in the mornig it Shifed N W. Capt Lewis wrote to the N W Companys agent on the Orsineboine River abt. North of this place

black Cat or Pose-cop-sa-he 1st Chief of the Mandans & 2d Village

"I believe what you have told us in Council, & that peace will be general, which not only givs me pleasure, but Satisfaction to all the nation, they now Can hunt without fear, and our womin Can work in the fields without looking every moment for the enimey-" as to the Ricares we will Show you that we wish piace with all, and do not make war on any with out Cause, that Chief pointing to the 2d of the Village and Some young men will accompany the Ricrea Chief home to his Nation to Smoke with that people- When the Indians of the Different Villages heard of your Comeing up they all Came in from hunting to See, they expected Great presents. they were disapointed, and Some dissatisfied- as to my Self I am not much So, but my Village are- he believed the roade was open; and he would go and See his great father- he Delivered Up 2 Traps which had been taken from the french, & gave me a roabe & about 12 bushels of Corn- & smoked &c

I answered the Speech it explained, many parts which he Could not understand-of the Speech of yesterday.

Wednesday October 31st

The river being very low and the season so far advanced that it frequently shuts up with ice in this climate we determined to spend the Winter in this neighbourhood, accordingly Capt. Clark with a party of men reconnoitred the countrey for some miles above our encampment; he returned in the evening without having succeed in finding an eligible situation for our purpose.-