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The Two Rivers of Lewis & Clark
Entries For December 12:
Captain Clark (current)
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All hands that are well employed in cutting logs and raising our winter cabins. Detached two men to split boards. Some rain at intervals all last night and today. The fleas were so troublesome last night that I made but a broken night's rest. We find great difficulty in getting those troublesome insects out of our robes and blankets. In the evening, two canoes of Clatsops visited us. They brought with them wappato, a black sweet root they call shanataque, and a small sea-otter skin, all of which we purchased for a few fishing hooks and a small sack of Indian tobacco which was given us by the Snake Indians.
Those Indians appear well disposed. We gave a medal to the Principal Chief, named Connyau or Commowol, and treated those with him with as much attention as we could. I can readily discover that they are close dealers, and stickle for a very little, never close a bargain except they think they have the advantage. Value blue beads highly, white they also prize, but no other color do they value in the least.
Reprinted by permission of the American Studies Programs at the University of Virginia.
The complete text can also be downloaded for printing from their website.