Wednesday, April 12, 2017

The Journals of Lewis and Clark at Fort Clatsop Oregon

(The kids and I had a fantastic time doing the Jr. Ranger Program at Fort Clatsop, Oregon)

 "From this place we had an extensive view of these stupendous mountains principally covered with snow... it would have seemed impossible ever to have escaped."  -Lewis, June 27, 1806
(We spent over two weeks reading the Journals of Lewis and Clark and so traveling here was so much fun to see history come alive.)

 "We had plenty of guns, powder, and ball, and we had given them a cannon to defend themselves... and to keep away from the river or we should kill every one of them... 7 of them halted on the top of a hill and blackguarded us, told us to come across and they would kill us all and of course we took no notice."  Clark, August 30, 1806
(The National Park is filled with incredible artifacts including muskets, powder horns, original clothes, fur pelts, and tools.)

 "There were three beaver taken this morning by the party.  The men prefer the flesh of this animal to that of any other which we have... I eat very heartily of the beaver myself ... particularly the tail and liver..."  -Lewis, April 17, 1805
(It's been said, that the Corps of Discovery, which was well outfitted with gear, truly conquered the west with ample supply of paper, gun powder, and ink.)

 "The wind blew so hard during the whole of this day that we were unable to move... sore eyes is a common complain among the party... so penetrating is this sand that we cannot keep any article free from it."  -Lewis, April 24, 1805
(The Journals of Lewis and Clark are absolutely hilarious and informative and wildly entertaining.  I highly recommend it for late elementary age children to just sit and read them in their entirety.  Take your kids out of school for a fortnight, sit down and read these journals, sketch them, watch documentaries, including the fantastic Ken Burns doc, and then travel to Fort Clatsop and soak it all up.  You will be immensely rewarded.)

 "The buffalo elk and antelope are so gentle that we pass near them while feeding without appearing to excite any alarm among them, and when we attract their attention, they frequently approach us..."  -Lewis, April 25, 1805
(Another great resource at Fort Clatsop are the maps and information on Native Americans.  Lewis and Clark have amazing light to shed on their culture.)

"The bear... after my firing on him pursued me seventy or eighty yards, but fortunately had been so badly wounded... it is astonishing to see the wounds they will bear before they can be put to death."  -Lewis, April 29, 1805
(Plus, this canoe is so pretty I stared at is for about ten minutes.)

 "The bear was very near catching Drewyer, it also pursued Carbono who fired his gun in the air as he ran but fortunately eluded the vigilence of the bear by secreting himself very securely in the bushes until Drewyer finally killed it by a shot in the head..."  -Lewis, June 2, 1805
(When you grow up in the northwest, you become accustomed to wildlife, but tracking it, hunting it, skinning it and eating it... is an art lost on all of us.)

 "9 Indians ran down the bank and beckoned to us to land, they appeared to be a war party, and I took them to be Tetons... as one canoe was yet behind we landed in an open commanding situation... several guns were fired by the Indians."  -Clark, September 1, 1806
(The Jr. Ranger program is free and the National Park Rangers were so helpful and kind.  They gave us pointers and badges and we had an excellent time.)

"I marked my name with red paint on a cotton tree near my camp and set out at an early hour..."  -Clark, July 27, 1806
(Don't shoot!)

 "Captain Lewis and myself ate a supper of roots boiled, which filled us so full of wind, that we were scarcely able to breathe all night."  -Clark, October 5, 1805
(Fort Clatsop is not only a Ranger Station and Museum, there is an actual fort here just a quick stroll through the woods... come on, let's take a walk!)

"We had horses 38 in number, collected and branded, cut off their fore top and delivered them to the 2 brothers and one son of the chiefs who intends to accompany us down the river."  -Clark, October 5, 1805

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