Starting PointThe Corps of Discovery leave St. Louis. There were fourty-three men.
"The best authenticated accounts informed us, that we were to pass through a country possessed by numerous, powerful and warlike nations of savages, of gigantic stature, fierce, treacherous and cruel; and particularly hostile to white men. And fame had united with tradition in opposing mountains to our course, which human enterprize and exertion would attempt in vain to pass." Patrick Gass
(Their spelling not mine)
Sgt. Floyd's Death and MemorialFloyd dies.
"He was laid out in the Best Manner possable. (their spelling not mine) ...we dug the Grave on a handsome Slightly Round knob close to the Bank." John Ordway
"Our commanding officers gave it the name of Floyd's river; to perpetuate the memory of the first man who had fallen in this important expedition." Patrick Gass
"This Man at all times gave us proofs of his firmness and Determined resolution to doe Service to his Countrey" William Clark
The Mandan and Hidatsa Village4,500 people lived in the Mandan and Hidatsa villages, which at the time was more people than in Washington D.C.
The Mandan and Hidatsa people like them and invite them to build a fort across the river from the main village.
This is also where Lewis and Clark meet Charbonneau, a French Canadian fur trader, and Sacagewea, his wife a Shoshone woman who was kidnapped by the Hidatsa years before.
"Some of their women are verry handsome" John Ordway
"...the air thick with Ice" John OrdwayThe temperature drops to 45 degree below zero at the Mandan village.
"...colder this morning than I ever [k]new it to be in the States," John Ordway
(their spelling not mine)
The Completion of Fort MandanConstrution on Fort Mandan is done! The Corps of Discovery move in for the rest of the winter.
"This evening we finished our fortification. Flour, dried apples, pepper and other articles were distributed in the different messes to enable them to celebrate Christmas in a proper and social manner." Patrick Gass
Jean Baptiste"one of the wives of Charbono was delivered of a fine boy." Meriwether Lewis.
Sacagewea has a beautiful baby boy. He is named Jean Baptiste.
The GrizzlyThe explorers meet their first grizzly!
"it is a much more furious and formidable anamal, and will frequently pursue the hunter when wounded. It is asstonishing to see the wounds they will bear before they can be put to death." Meriwether Lewis
(Their spelling not mine. I'm keeping true to the journals)
Lone Horse Rider"I discovered an Indian on horse back about two miles distant coming down the plain towards us. ...I discovered from his dress that he was of a different nation from any that we had yet seen, and was satisfyed of his being a Sosone; his arms were a bow and quivere of arrows, and was mounted on an eligant horse without a saddle" Meriwether Lewis.
Unfourtunately the man was scared off by the men, but they desperately need horses from the Shoshone!
(The quotes are their spelling not mine.)
Lemhi PassThe weary travelers find a cold spring and get a refreshing drink at Lemhi Pass.
"we proceeded on to the top of the dividing ridge from which I discovered immence ranges of high mountains still to the West of us with their tops partially covered with snow." Meriwether Lewis
ShoshoneThe Corps of Discovery finally find a Shoshone village!
"... the Indian woman, who proved to be a sister of the Chief Cameahwait. " Meriwether Lewis
Because of this, the tribe gives them twenty-nine horses, one mule, and a guide named Old Toby
Yummy Horse!"Here we were compelled to kill a Colt for our men" William Clark.
While crossing the Bitterroot Mountains the party gets so hungery they kill one of the horses to eat. They named a nearby stream Colt Killed Creek.
"good eating." Patrick Gass
Merry ChristmasLewis and Clark and the others celebrate Christmas in Fort Clatsop with the Indians that live near by.
"At daybreak all the men paraded (The quotes are their spelling not mine.) and fired a round of small arms, wishing the Commanding Officers a merry Christmas." Patrick Gass
Lewis and Clark's men gave tabaco and handkerchiefs as gifts. The indians gave white weasel tails, Gutherich, and black root.
Hot DogsThe group buys dogs from the Indians for sustanance.
"while we lived principally on flesh of this anamal we were much more healthy strong and more fleshey than we had been since we left the Buffaloe country. for my own part I have become so perfectly reconciled to the dog that I think it an agreeable food and would prefer it vastly to lean Venison or Elk." Meriwether Lewis
"I have not become reconsiled to the taste of this animal as yet." William Clark
(Their spelling, not mine)
The MapThe map of their journey is finished and they can see their great accomplishments. Crossing mountains, dragging themselves up a river, they must feel proud.
"we now discover that we have found the most practicable and navigable passage across the Continent of North America" Meriwether Lewis
(Their spelling not mine. I'm keeping true to the journals)
"I shall proceed on to the head of the Rockejhone [Yellowstone] with a party of 9 or 10 men and desend that river. from the R Rockejhone I shall dispatch Sgt. Pryor with the horses to the Mandans" William Clark.
Lewis went "the most direct rout to the falls of the Missouri, there to leave Thompson McNeal and goodrich to prepare carriages and geer for the purpose of transporting the canoes and baggage over the portage, and myself and six volunteers to ascend Maria's" Meriwether Lewis
ReunionThe split up groups join up again at the mouth of the Yellowstone river.
"we overtook Capt Clark and party all alive and well ... we fired the blunderbusses and Small arms being rejoiced to meet all together again." John Ordway
"and now, (thanks to God) we are all together again in good health" Patrick Gass.
Home Sweet HomeThey arrive at St. Louis and the journey is over!
They "were received with great kindness and marks of friendship by the inhabitants, after an absence of two years, four months and ten days." Patrick Gass
That's a long time to be away from home!