Journals of Lewis and Clark: Dates December 1804 - Part One
Lewis and Clark Picture
Journals of Lewis and Clark
Dates: December 1, 1804 - December 5, 1804


This article provides interesting facts about their historic journey taken from the Journals of Lewis and Clark dates December 1, 1804 - December 5, 1804.

Lewis and cClark Expedition: Jounal Dates December 1, 1804 - December 5, 1804

The Journals of Lewis and Clark: Dates December 1804

The Journals of Lewis and Clark: Dates December 1, 1804 - December 5, 1804
The following excerpts are taken from entries of the Journals of Lewis and Clark. Dates: December 1, 1804 - December 5, 1804

December 1, 1804
Saturday, December 1. The wind was from the northwest, and the whole party engaged in picketing the fort. About ten o'clock the half-brother of the man who had been killed, came to inform us that six Sharhas or Chayenne Indians had arrived, bringing a pipe of peace, and that their nation was three days march behind them. Three Pawnees had accompanied the Sharhas, and the Mandans being afraid of the Sharhas on account of their being at peace with the Sioux, wished to put both them and the three Pawnees to death; but the chiefs had forbidden it as it would be contrary to our wishes. We gave him a present of tobacco, and although from his connexion with the sufferer, he was more embittered against the Pawnees than any other Mandan, yet he seemed perfectly satisfied with our pacific counsels and advice. The Mandans, we observe, call all the Ricaras by the name of Pawnees; the name of Ricaras being that by which the nation distinguishes itself.

In the evening we were visited by a Mr. Henderson, who came from the Hudson bay company to trade with the Minnetarees. He had been about eight days on his route in a direction nearly south, and brought with him tobacco, beeds, and other merchandize to trade for furs, and a few guns which are to be exchanged for horses.

December 2, 1804
Sunday, December 2. The latter part of the evening was warm, and a thaw continued till the morning, when the wind shifted to the north. At eleven o'clock the chiefs of the lower village brought down four of the Sharhas. We explained to them our intentions, and advised them to remain at peace with each other: we also gave them a flag, some tobacco, and a speech for their nation. These were accompanied by a letter to messrs. Tabeau and Gravelines at the Ricara village, requesting them to preserve peace if possible, and to declare the part which we should be forced to take if the Ricaras and Sioux made war on those whom we had adopted. After distributing a few presents to the Sharhas and Mandans, and showing them our curiosities we dismissed them, apparently well pleased at their reception.

December 3, 1804
Monday, December 3. The morning was fine, but in the afternoon the weather became cold with the wind from the northwest. The father of the Mandan who was killed brought us a present of dried pumpkins and some pemitigon, for which we gave him some small articles. Our offer of assistance to avenge the death of his son seemed to have produced a grateful respect from him, as well as from the brother of the deceased, which pleased us much.

December 4, 1804
Tuesday 4th. The wind continues from the northwest, the weather cloudy and raw, and the river rose one inch, Oscapsahe and two young chiefs pass the day with us. The whole religion of the Mandans consists in the belief of one great spirit presiding over their destinies. This being must be in the nature of a good genius since it is associated with the healing art, and the great spirit is synonymous with great medicine, a name also applied to every thing which they do not comprehend. Each individual selects for himself the particular object of his devotion, which is termed his medicine, and is either some invisible being or more commonly some animal, which thenceforward becomes his protector or his intercessor with the great spirit; to propitiate whom every attention is lavished, and every personal consideration is sacrificed. "I was lately owner of seventeen horses," said a Mandan to us one day, "but I [139]have offered them all up to my medicine and am now poor." He had in reality taken all his wealth, his horses, into the plain, and turning them loose committed them to the care of his medicine and abandoned them forever.

The horses less religious took care of themselves, and the pious votary traveled home on foot. Their belief in a future state is connected with this tradition of their origin: the whole nation resided in one large village under ground near a subterraneous lake; a grape-vine extended its roots down to their habitation and gave them a view of the light: some of the most adventurous climed up the vine and were delighted with the sight of the earth, which they found covered with buffalo and rich with every kind of fruits: returning with the grapes they had gathered, their countrymen were so pleased with the taste of them that the whole nation resolved to leave their dull residence for the charms of the upper region; men, women and children ascended by means of the vine; but when about half the nation had reached the surface of the earth, a corpulent woman who was clambering up the vine broke it with her weight, and closed upon herself and the rest of the nation the light of the sun. Those who were left on earth made a village below where we saw the nine villages; and when the Mandans die they expect to return to the original seats of their forefathers; the good reaching the ancient village by means of the lake, which the burden of the sins of the wicked will not enable them to cross.

December 5, 1804
Wednesday 5. The morning was cold and disagreeable, the wind from the southeast accompanied with snow: in the evening there was snow again and the wind shifted to the northeast: we were visited by several Indians with a present of pumpkins, and by two of the traders of the northwest company.

Next Journal Entry

Journals of Lewis and Clark for kids. Dates: December 1804
  • Fascinating information and interesting facts from the Journals of Lewis and Clark
  • The Journals of Lewis and Clark 1804
  • The Journals of Lewis and Clark. Dates: December 1, 1804 - December 5, 1804
  • Fast, fun facts and interesting information
  • Interesting Facts, History and information for kids and schools
  • Ideal Homework resource: Journals of Lewis and Clark
  • History of the famous explorers and their journey
  • The famous voyage of discovery and exploration
  • Dates: December 1804
Journals of Lewis and Clark - Dates: December 1, 1804 - December 5, 1804

Journals of Lewis and Clark - Dates - December 1804 - Animals - Dates - Discoveries - Definition - Expedition - Explorers - Exploration - Kids - Facts - Great Journey West - Guide - Dates December 1, 1804 - December 5, 1804 - Great Falls - Grizzly Bear - History - Hardships - Indian Tribe - Tribes - Indian Guide - Dates December 1804 - Information - Journals - Journey - Journey Timeline - Keelboat - Northwest Passage - Ohio River - Route - Supplies - Trail - Corps Of Discovery - Villages - Voyage - Yellowstone River - Yankton Sioux - Zoology - Columbia River - Journal - Journals - Journals of Lewis and Clark