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Journal Entry Archives
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1804 Journal Entry Archives  July  14 - 21, 1804

  Map  PDF  871 KB

July 14, 1804 - Camped near the Nemaha-Richardson county line, Nebraska.

" Some hard Showers of rain this morning prevented our Setting out untill 7oClock, at half past seven, the atmispr. became Sudenly darkened by a black and dismal looking Cloud, at the time we were in a Situation (not to be bettered) near the upper point of the Sand Island, on which we lay, and the opposit Shore, the bank was falling in and lined with snags as far as we could see down,- in this situation the Storm which passd over an open Prairie from the NE Struck the our boat on the Satrbd. quarter, and would have thrown her up on the Sand Island dashed to peces in an Instant, had not the party leeped out on the Leward Side and kept her off with the assistance of the ancker & Cable, untill the Storm was over, the waves Dashed over her windward Side and She must have filled with water if the Lockers which is covered with Tarpoling & prevented Threw of the water & prevented any quantity Getting into Bilge of the Boat.  In this situation we continued about 40 minits, when the Storm Sudenly Seased and the river become instancetaniously as Smoth as Glass, the wind shifted and we Set Sail, and proceeded on  passed a old fort where Mr. Bennet* of St Louis winttered 2 years & traded with the Otteaus & Panies.  Several men unwell with Boils."  Clark 

Mr. Bennet* - Probably Francois M. Benoit, who had engaged in the trade with the Osages for several years before the Louisiana Purchase, or possibly a relative.  Benoit was a partner of Manuel Lisa, and kie Lisa, had somehow antagonized Lewis during the winter before the expedition set out, causing the captain to write, "Damn Manuel and triply Damn Mr. B."  The post was in northwest Holt County, Missouri.

July 15, 1804 - Camped in Nemaha County, Nebraska, somewhat above the town of Nemaha.

"a heavy fog this morning which Detained us untill 7 oClock ... I had at one part of the Prairie a verry extensive view of all the Countrey around up and down the riverů I saw great quantities of Grapes, Plums, Wild cherries, hazelnuts, and goosberries."  Clark

"This evening I discovered that my Chronometer had stoped, nor can I assign any cause for this accedent; she had been wound up the preceding noon as usual.  This is the third instance in which this instrument has  stopt in a similar manner since she has been in my possession, tho' the first only since our departure from the River Dubois."  Lewis

July 16, 1804- Camped few miles northeast of Peru, Nebraska, in the state of Nebraska or Missouri.

"Set out verry early and proceeded on the Side of a Prarie  ... passed a small willow island off the L. Point hills make near the river  passed a large Island nearest the LS below the pt. a Small willow island.  also one on the Side.  this large Island is called fair sun* the wind favourable from the South.  passed under a clift of Sand Stone**.  a number of Burds*** Nests in the holes & crevises of this rock which continus 2 miles. "   Clark

large Island is called fair sun* - Named for a St. Louis fur trader who once wintered there, Eugene Pouree dit Beausoleil, from whom it became Beausoleil (fair, or good, sun) Island.  It was later Sun Island, and perhaps Sonora Island, a few miles upstream from present Brownville, Nebraska.  The island has apparently disappeared.

Sand Stone** - Rocks exposed along this reach of the Missouri River are mapped as basal Permian Admire Group, the lowermost unit of which is the cliff forming Indian Cave sandstone.

Burds*** - One naturalist has supposed the birds to be bank swallows.

July 17, 1804

"we concluded to Stay Lay by to day to fix the Longitude, and get the Cronometer right, (She run down Day before yesterday),  Several men out hunting to day.  Capt. Lewis rode out to Neesh-nah-ba-to-na Creek* which passes thro."  Several of the party have tumers of differnt Kinds some of which is verry troubelsom and difcuilty to cure."  Clark

Neesh-nah-ba-to-na Creek*  - The Nishnabotna River now enters the Missouri in this vicinity, roughly opposite Peru, Nebraska.

July 18, 1804 - Camped  little below Nebraska City, Nebraska

"We prosecuted our voyage with a fair wind and pleasant weather. This is the most open country I ever beheld.  Saw a dog this evening  appeared to be nearly Starved to death, he must have been left by Some party of Hunters  we gave him some meet, he would not come near,  G. Drewrer brought in 2 Deer this evening."   Clark

July 19, 1804- Camped in Fremont County, Iowa, two to three miles upstream and opposite Nebraska City, Nebraska  (Timeline & Map PDF>>)

"breakfast which was on a rosted Ribs of a Deer a little Coffee I walked on Shore intending only to Keep up with the Boat, Soon after I got on shore, Saw some fresh elk Sign, which I was induced to prosue those animal by their track to the hills.  after assending and passing thro a narrow strip of wood Land, Came Suddenly into an open and bound less Prarie, I Say bound less because I could not See the extent of the plain in any Derection, the timber appeared to be confined to the River Creeks & Small branches, this Prarie was Covered with grass about 18 Inches or 2 feat high and contained little of anything else, except as before on the River Creeks &c, This prospect was So Sudden & entertaining that I forgot the object of my prosute and turned my attention to the Variety which presented themselves to my view Renewed our voyage and passed a number of sand bars. Halted for dinner where we found a great quantity of cherries, called by some choak-cherries"  Clark

July 20, 1804- Camped in Cass County, Nebraska  (Timeline & Map PDF>>)

"a fog this morning and verry Cool  George Drewyer Sick  proceed on over a Sand bar, bratten Swam the river to get his gun & clothes left last night  psd a large willow Isd. pased the mouth of l'Eau que pleure the English of which is the water which Cry's*  this creek is about 20 yards wide  falls into the river aboe a Clift of brown Clay.  opposit a willow Island, at this Creek I went on Shore took R Fields with me and went up this Creek Several miles & crosse thro the plains to the river above with the view of finding Elk, we walked all day through those priaries without seeing any, I killed an emence large yellow Wolf** -  The soil of those praries appears rich but much Parched with the frequent fires***- "  Clark

water which Cry's*  - Weeping Water Creek, in Otoe County, Nebraska.  Apparently the original Omaha and Oto name was more nearly "murmuring water."

large yellow Wolf**  - The gray wolf, probably Canis lupus nubilus, perhaps a Lewis and Clark discovery and now extinct.

frequent fires*** - As the Corps traveled through the Great Plains it was understood that fires were ecologically important wherever grass growth was abundant to prevent secondary growth. They were set by lightning or accidentally by humans, or often Indians set fires purposely for signaling or for improving grazing.

July 21, 1804 - Camped in Sarpy County, a little above the mouth of the Papillion Creek  (Timeline & Map PDF>>)

"We came to the great river Platte.  this river which is much more rapid than the Missourie has thrown out imence quantities of Sand forming large sand banks at its mouth and forced the Missourie Close under the SS.  the Sands of this river Comes roleing down with the Current which is Crowded with Sand Bars and not 5 feet water at any place across its mouth,  the rapidity of the Current of this river which is greater than that of the Missourie, its width at the Mouth across the bars is about 3/4 of a mile, higher up I am told by one of the bowmen* that he was 2 winters on this river above and that it does not rise (four)  7 feet, but Spreds over 3 miles at some places.  Capt Lewis & my self went up some distance & crossed   found it Shallow.   proceeded on  passed the mouth of Papillion or Butter fly Creek**"

bowmen*  - Either Labiche of Cruzatter; the latter, in particular, seems to have spent considerable time in eastern Nebraska trading with the Indians.  Both were half Omaha and were very likely born in the region, sons of French traders.

Papillion or Butter fly Creek** - Papillion, or Big Papillion, Creek reaches the Missouri in Sarpy County, within a mile or so north of the mouth of the Platte.

History
From the Journals of
Lewis and Clark
Lewis & Clark 101
Lewis & Clark Biography 
Thomas Jefferson & Louisiana Purchase
Corps of Discovery
Lewis & Clark with Sacagawea
Lewis & Clark Among the Tribes
York, Clark's man-servant
Seaman, Lewis' Dog
Clark as Cartographer
Lewis as Botanist
Medical Aspects
Court Martial's
Geology on the Lewis and Clark Trail
Lewis and Clark 1806
Trail Trivia

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