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The Two Rivers of Lewis & Clark
Entries For June 14:
Captain Clark (current)
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A fine morning. The Indian woman complaining all night, and excessively bad this morning. Her case is somewhat dangerous. Two men with the toothache, 2 with tumors, and one man with a tumor and a slight fever. Passed the camp Captain Lewis made the first night, at which place he had left part of two bears, their skins, &c. Three men with tumors went on shore and stayed out all night. One of them killed 2 buffalo, a part of which we made use of for breakfast.
The current excessively rapid, more so as we ascend. We find great difficulty in getting the pirogue and canoes up in safety. Canoes take in water frequently.
At 4 o'clock this evening, Joe Fields returned from Captain Lewis with a letter for me. Captain Lewis dates his letter from the Great Falls of the Missouri, which, Fields informs me, is about 20 miles in advance and about 10 miles above the place I left the river the time I was up last week. Captain Lewis informs me that those falls in part answer the description given of them by the Indians, much higher; the eagle's nest which they describe is there. From those signs, he is convinced of this being the river the Indians call the Missouri.
He intends examining the river above, until my arrival at a point from which we can make a portage, which he is apprehensive will be at least 5 miles, and both above and below there are several small pitches and swift troubled water. We made only 10 miles today, and camped on the larboard side. Much hard slate in the cliffs and but a small quantity of timber.
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.