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William Dunbar.
“Journal of a Voyage.”

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SET out from St. Catherine's landing in the afternoon. The Latitude of this place is 31° 26' 30" North; and Longitude 6h 5' 56" —west of Greenwich. A little below are the white cliffs 5 leagues below the Natchez the face of the cliffs is chiefly white sand surmounted by pine; the cliffs are from 100 to 200 feet high; when the waters are low the basis of the cliffs are uncovered consisting of clay of different colours and some beds of ochre covered here and there by a thin lamina of iron ore; small springs possessing a petrifying property flow over the clay and ochre; numberless logs and pieces of timber converted into stone are strewed about the beach. Fine pure argil of various colours chiefly white and red is found here. Encamped at night upon an Island 7 miles below the place of departure.

Set off; passed Fort Adams, and six miles farther the line of demarcation, and arrived at the mouth of red river about nine miles below the line of demarcation; encamped just within its mouth; the waters of this river have a red appearance from a rich fat earth or marl of that colour born down by the floods from which it derives its name; the mouth of the river is about five hundred and fifty yards wide: here we commenced taking the meanders of the river by course and time depending upon the log to inform us of our rate of going as well as the velocity of the current; there is however no sensible Current at the mouth: the banks on both sides are here clothed with willows, the land is low and subject to inundation to the height of 30 or more feet above the present level of the waters, the mouth of the red river is accounted to be 75 leagues from New Orleans and 3 miles above the exit of the Chafalaya or Opelousa river which was probably the continuation of the red river, when perhaps its waters did not unite with those of the Missisippi excepting during the inundation. M de Ferrer has settled the Latitude and Longitude of this place; the first at 31° 1' 15" N. and the last at 6° 7' 11" west of Greenwich.

Set off up the river, remarked vegetation to be surprisingly luxuriant along the banks owing no doubt to the rich red marie yearly deposited by the floods of the river — willows grow to a good size, but other forest trees are much smaller than those seen upon the banks of the Missisippi, which may be owing to the newly formed soil or its excessive richness. The river narrows gradually as we advance: at noon it was about 200 yards wide. Got out the instruments, which requiring a good deal of adjustment we were unable to make perfect observations. The Latitude 31°. 8'. 54". 6, perhaps accurate enough to correct the traverse of the river.* The banks of the river are luxuriantly clothed with pea-vine and several kinds of grasses yielding seed, of which geese and ducks are very greedy: got our log line prepared and divided into perches — hove the log and found we went at the rate of 4 perches in half a minute. i. e. 1 1/2 mile per hour — very slow—Soldiers do not exert themselves at the oar; came to, for the night having made nearly 13 miles — hove the lead in the middle of the river and found 11 fathoms. There are generally willows growing on one side of the river, and on the other the same small growth of forest trees continues, consisting chiefly of black oak, packawn, hickory, elm &c. The Trees are so exceedingly grand & lofty upon the banks of the Missisippi, that by comparison those bordering on this river seem dwarfish, and appear to bear a kind of proportion to the magnitude of their own river. The extremes of temperature were from 46° to 48° of Farhenheits thermometer. Made this day 12 55/60 miles.

Continued our rout up the river; having given the Soldiers this morning a few words of advice and encouragement, they improved considerably in activity and cheerfulness, hove the log and found we went 7 perches per half minute, the Current yet continues so moderate as to offer no impediment to our rowing along shore therefore not worth estimating: landed before 12 to observe and for dinner. Latitude 31° 14' 50".1. After dinner caught a runaway negro; proceeded on to the confluence of red and black river in Latitude 31° 15' 48" which by our reckoning appears to be 26 1/3 miles from the Missisippi, the Contrast of the two rivers is great, the red river being charged with red marly earth and the other a clear river gives it by comparison a dark appearance, hence the name of black river — Each river is about 150 yards and when united about 200 yards wide. Sounded in the black river and found 20 feet black sand, little or no current. Took specimens of the red marl of red river bank. The water of the black river is rather clearer than that of the Ohio and of a warm temperature, probably owing to the waters which flow into it from the valley of the Missisippi particularly from the Catahoola. Made 15 miles 102 perches.

Continue ascending the river; Thermometer 47° Temperature of the water 73°- a spring issuing from the river bank 66° Forest trees on the banks chiefly red and black oak interspersed with ash, paccawn, hickory, some elms, pirsimon &c; several kinds of grass and many humble plants in flower, so that even at this season our country affords employment for the Botanist. Great luxuriance of vegetation along the shore, grass very rank, and a thick curtain of shrubberry of a deep green; the soil black marl mixed with a moderate proportion of sand, resembling much the soil on the Missisippi banks, yet the forest trees are not lofty like to those on the margin of the great river, but resembling the growth on the red river. I omitted mentioning in its proper place, that the last single inundation of the red river appears to have deposited on the high bank a stratum of red marl above 1/2 inch thick now dry; some specimens were taken. Took a meridian altitude of the Sun, from which the Latitude deduced was 31°22'46".6—observed Canes growing on several parts of the right bank, a proof that the land is not deeply overflowed, perhaps from 1 to 3 feet: the banks have th appearance of stability, very little willow or other productions of a newly formed soil being seen on either side: the solid high bank being deeply shaded by vegetation from the humble creeping plant to the spreading oak. Encamped at sun-set. Sounded; 5 fathoms — black sand — Extremes of the Thermometer 47°—80° Made this day 13 miles 40 perches.

Thermometer before sun-rise 60° Continue ascending; no current to imped us, for altho' there be a feeble current along the principal thread of the stream, yet as this is deflected from bend to bend, we easily avoid its influence by directing our course from point to point or rather passing a little under the points, and in fact where there is any current, a compensation is found by the counter current or eddy under the points. The river is now only 80 yards wide; the timber becomes larger, the banks in some places 40 feet high, yet liable to inundation, not from the floods of this small river, but from the intrusion of its more powerful neighbour the Missisippi: The lands decline rapidly (as in all alluvial countries) from the margin to the Cypress swamps, where more or less water stagnates all the year round. The current of the river is still so insensible even in the thread of stream, that we take no account of it: at 8h a.m. we arrived at an Island, small but elevated, said to be the only one in this river for more than 100 leagues ascending. On the left bank near the Island is a small settlement commenced by a man and his wife: a covered frame of rough poles without walls serves for a house, and a Couple of acres of indian corn had been cultivated, which suffices to stock their little magazine with bread for the year; the forest supplies Venison, Bear, turkey &c, the river fowl and fish; the skins of the wild animals and an abundance of the finest honey being carried to market enables the new settler to supply himself largely with all other necessary articles; in a year or two he arrives at a state of independence, he purchases horses, cows & other domestic animals, perhaps a slave also who shares with him the labours and the productions of his fields & of the adjoining forests. How happy the contrast, when we compare the fortune of the new settler in the U. S. with the misery of the half starving, oppressed and degraded Peasant of Europe ! ! — The banks here are not less than 40 feet above the present level of the river water and but rarely overflowed; the nearest road to the high lands at the Rapid-settlement on the red river, nearly west is said to be 40 miles thro' an inundated alluvial country; it is probable the direct distance does not much exceed one half, the numerous lakes in the overflowed lands rendering the road very circuitous: both banks are clothed with rich Cane-brake, pierced by many creeks carry boats during the inundation: saw-many Cormorants and the stately Hooping Crane: Geese and Ducks not yet abundant; they arrive in myriads with the rains & winter cold: Landed before noon to observe: we had been disappointed at the hour of breakfast by clouds in making observations for the magnetic variation and for regulating the time & rate of going of the watch, preparatory to the lunar observation, & now apprehended the same disappointment, the heavens being loaded with flying clouds: just before the Sun was expected on the meridian, a dense cloud concealed him from view, when he reappeared he was already dipped a little; the latitude deduced is undoubtedly too far North 31° 37' 52'.5 the sun had therefore not attained his meridian altitude.

This afternoon found the shore favorable for tracking, (i. e.) running along shore & towing the boat; rate of going by log a little improved 5 perches pr. 1/2 minute. At 3h p. m. thermr. 83°. — The banks have a regular shelving slope from the top to the water's edge & are totally covered with the most luxuriant herbage consisting chiefly of 5 or 6 kinds of strong grass yielding vast crops of seed nearly mature, upon which Geese and Ducks get surprisingly fat: we shot some water fowl of the Duck kind, whose web-foot was partially divided, the body covered with a bluish or lead coloured plumage; they were extremely fat and excellent, resembling in taste the Canvass-back, The teal of these rivers is also very fat and fine. Wind S.S.E. and cloudy. Encamped. Extremes of the thermometer 60°—83''. Made this day 14 miles 59 perches.

Thermometer before sun-rise 65° Wind S.S.E. cloudy. A few drops of rain before day: set off as soon as we could get the men ready & on board. — Soldiers slow in their movements —continues cloudy & threatens rain. Green matter floating on the river, supposed to come from the Catahoola and other lakes and bayoos of stagnant water, which when raised a little by rain flow into the black river. Saw also many patches of an aquatic plant resembling little Islands, some floating on the surface of the river, and others adhering to or resting on the shore and logs; examined the plant & found it to be a hollow jointed stem with roots of the same form; extremely light with very narrow willow shaped leaves projecting from the joint, embracing however the whole of the tube extending to the next inferior joint or knot; the extremity of each branch is terminated by a spike of very slender and narrow seminal leaves from one to two inches in length and 1/10 or less in breadth, producing its seed on the under side of the leaf in a double row, almost in contact,the grains alternately placed in perfect regularity: I have not been able to detect the flower, so as to be able to determine the class and order to which the plant belongs, it is not probably new; I at first supposed it might be the same which is described by Mr. Bartram as occupying large portions of the surfaces of rivers in East Florida, but upon examination I found it to be entirely different.

The day continued cloudy; at noon it rained, we had consequently no observation for the Latitude. At 3h p. m. thermr at 79° — the afternoon continued cloudy. The current is yet insensible as to any opposition made to our progress. Sounded in the evening, found 31/2 fathoms, the river being now considered very low. Extremes of thethermy 65°-79° Wind S.S.E. Cloudy — made 13 miles 76 perches.

Thermometer 68°—the riverfor several nights past has fallen about 3 inches perpendicular each night: observed a great number of muscles and periwincles along shore: the muscle is of the kind commonly called pearl-muscle, & by means of its long tongue makes considerable progress along the bottom & upon the beaches of the river when under water: our people had a quantity of them dressed and found them to be agreeable food: to me they were tough and unpalatable. The wind altho' a head but not strong, we got along pretty well; but towards 11h. a. m. it became much stronger, and we made little way. Notwithstanding the cloudy state of the atmosphere we were fortunate in getting a good meridian observation, by which it appears we were in Lat: 30° 36' 29" nearly 3 miles higher than the town of Natchez: after dinner proceeded to the mouth of the Catahoola on the left and landed to get information from a french man settled here: he has a grant of land from the Spanish government, has made a small settlement and keeps a ferry-boat for crossing men & horses traveling to or from Natchez and the settlements on red river and on the Washita river: the Country here is all alluvial; in process of time the rivers shutting up ancient passages & elevating the banks over which their waters pass, no longer communicate with the same facility as formerly; the consequence of which naturally is that many large tracts formerly subject to annual inundation are now entirely exempt from that inconvenience: such is the situation of a most valuable tract upon which this french man is settled: his house is placed upon an Indian mount with several others in view: there is also a species of rampart surrounding this place & one very elevated mount; all of which I propose to view and describe on my return, our situation not now admitting delay: the soil here is equal to the Missisippi bottoms; the proprietor says the high mount is not less than 80 feet perpendicular, of this we shall form some estimate at our return. We obtained from him the following list of distances from the mouth of the red river to the Post on the Washita called Fort Miro.

From the mouth of Red river to the mouth of black river . . . . .

To the mouths of Catahoola, Washita & Tenza ......

To the River Ha-ha on the right

To the Prairie de Villemont on the same

To Bayoo Louis on the same — rapids here

To Bayoo Boeufs on the same

To the Prairie Noyee (drowned Savannah)

To Pine point on the left .

To the Bayoo Calumet

To the Coal mine on the right & Gypsum on the opposite shore ....

To the I'! Settlement

To Fort Miro

The accounts of the low state of the river we receive here are rather discouraging, as it appears, that on the first rapids, seven leagues distant there are only 22 inches of water, and we now draw at the stern 30 inches or more.— Went on and encamped within the mouth of the river Washita. This river derives its appellation from the name of an indian tribe formerly merly resident on its banks, but now no more to be found;it is said that the remnant of the nation went into the great planes to the westward & either compose a small tribe themselves, or are incorporated into another nation. The Junction of the Washita with the Tenza and the Catahoola a little below, all together form the black river, which last here, loses its name, altho' our maps represent it as taking place of the Washita: the Tenza and Catahoola are also names of ancient tribes now extinct: the latter is now the name of a Creek or bayoo 12 leagues long, which is the issue of a lake of the same name 8 leagues in length & 2 leagues generally in breadth, it lies west of this place & communicates with the Red river during the time of the great annual inundation; it receives at the West or N.W. angle a Creek called little river, which preserves a channel with running water at all seasons, meandering along the bed of the lake; but all other parts of its superficies during the dry season from July to november & often latter, are completely drained & become clothed in the most luxuriant herbage: the bed of the Lake then becomes the residence of immense herds of Deer, of Turkeys, Geese, Ducks, Cranes &c &c feeding upon the grass and grain; the Duck species being generally found on or near the little river. The Bayoo Tenza serves only to drain off a part of the waters of the inundation from the Missisippi low lands which communicate with the black river during the season of high waters. By reference to our Latitude at Noon we find the mouth of the Washita to be in Lat: 31° 37' 57" — Extremes of the thermometer 68°-73°. Sounded — found 6 fathoms — muddy bottom. Made this day 9 miles 77 1/2 perches.

Thermometer before sun-rise 54° — Wind North — Cloudy — Temperature of the river water 71° No current to impede our progress worth estimating. Made slow advancement as usual with our oars; found the shore favorable for tracking or towing, which mode we continued nearly all day making at the rate of five perches pr. 1/2 minute, which is about half a perch more than by rowing: a boat properly constructed for an expedition of this nature ought to advance with more than double our velocity. The wind was contrary all day otherwise we might have gone at the rate of 6 perches which is equal to 21/4 miles per hour, more might be performed, but our Soldiers seem at certain times to be without vigour & now and then throw out hints that they can work only as they are paid.

The high lands on both sides have now the appearance of being above the inundation; the timber is such as is generally produced upon high lands chiefly Oaks, red, white & black;interspersed with a variety of others; the magnolio grandiflora is absent; its presence is an infallible sign of lands not subject to inundation. We observed to day along the banks the strata of solid clay or marl (not recent but apparently ancient) to lie in very oblique positions, some making an angle of nearly 30° with the horizon & generally inclined with the descent of the river,altho' in a few cases the position was contrary; timber was also seen projecting from under the solid bank, which last seems to be in some measure indurated; it is unquestionably very ancient presenting a very different appearance from the recently formed soil: the river is here about 80 yards wide. The Bayoo Ha-ha comes in unexpectedly from the right about a league above the mouth of the Washita, and is one of the many passages or issues thro' which the waters of the great inundation penetrate & pervade all the low countries, annihilating for a time the currents of the lesser rivers in the neighbourhood of the missisippi. Vegetation is extremely vigourous along the alluvial banks; the twining vines entangle the branches of the trees & expand themselves along the margin of the river, in the richest and most luxuriant festoons, and often present for a great extent a species of impenetrable Curtain varigated and spangled with all possible gradations of Color from the splendid orange to the enlivening green down to the purple & blue and interwoven with bright red and russet brown. A carpet of the finest shrubbery overspreads the elevated margin, composed of a variety of elegant vegetables, to many of which probably no names have yet been assigned by the Botanist; and in positions where the shade is not too deep, the surface is enameled with thousands of humbler plants in full blossom at this late season.

The day has continued cloudy but begins to clear away about 11h a.m. we therefore landed before noon to observe & found our Latitude to be 31° 42' 30".5—The timber of the higher grounds is still remarked to be inferior in size and height to that on the Missisippi; but here it may be accounted for by a less fertile soil, not apparently (at most rarely) subject to inundation. The wind still continues in the N. or N.N.W. but the clouds are disipating and tomorrow we expect fair weather, for making observations. Extremes of the thermometer 54°—68°. Encamped after completing a poor days voyage of 14 miles 48 perches. Thermr at 8h p.m. 54°. —

Thermr in air 49° — in river water 68°. Wind north. Cloudy. Continued & passed Villemont's prairie on the right & pine point opposite: the prairie obtained its name in consequence of its being included within a grant under the french Government to a gentleman of that name; some 1 October of the family & name yet remain at New Orleans but I have not heard of any claim for this land; many other parts of the Washita are named after their early proprietors: the french people projected & began extensive settlements upon this river, but the general massacre planned & in part executed by the Indians against the french, and the consequent massacre of the Natchez tribe by the french, broke up all those undertakings & they were not re-commenced under the french government. Those prairies are planes or savannahs without timber, generally very fertile, producing an exuberance of strong thick and coarse herbage. When a piece of ground is once got into this state in an indian country, it can have no opportunity of re-producing timber; it being an invariable rule to fire the dry grass in the Fall or winter, to obtain the advantage of attracting game when the young tender grass begins to spring; & thus the young timber is destroyed, & annually the prairie gains upon the wood land; it is probable that the immense planes known to exist in America may owe their origin to this practize. The planes of the Washita lie chiefly on the East side, & being generally formed like the Missisippi lands sloping from the bank of the river towards the great river, they are more or less liable to the influence of inundation in the rear, which has been known advance so far in certain great floods, as to be ready to pour over the margin into the Washita river; this however has now become a very rare case & it may generally be estimated that from 1/4 mile to a whole mile in depth will remain exempt from inundation during high floods: and this is pretty much the Case with those lands nearly as high as the Post of the Washita, with the exception of certain ridges of primitive high land; the rest being evidently alluvial, altho' not now subject to be inundated by the Washita river, (which has originally caused their formation), in consequence of the great depth, which the bed of the river has acquired by abrasion.

We saw a good deal of high land to day on either bank producing pine and other timber not the growth of inundated lands. About a league beyond Pine point we arrived at Bayoo Louis on the right, being the commencement of the rapids or rather shallows: Sent people into the water to search the best channel, and after being frequently aground and dragging the boat we got up into a situation about a mile higher, where we were in a manner embayed, being shut in by a gravel-bar upon which there was scarsely in the deepest part a foot of water: finding the men fatigued by being so much in the water at hard labor, we thought it best to rest for the remainder of the day and consult upon what was best to be done.—The bar being of inconsiderable breadth & no rock in the bottom as we had been taught to expect,it was thought best to cut a channel sufficient for the passage of the boat, which we supposed would take less time than unloading,transporting & reloading at a considerable distance from our present station.—The weather continued damp and disagreeably cold all day: we had no observation at noon. Extremes of the Thermr 49°-6o° Wind at North. Clearing up — many stars to be seen in the evening: made 3 miles 120 perches.

Thermomr in air 40° in river water 65° — Wind N.W. light clouds. The morning being very cool, it was thought best for the people to take an early breakfast before going into the water to work. After breakfast commenced digging the cannal which was required to be about an hundred feet long: this business went on heavily & slowly as usual, and it was not untill noon that it was made barely of the depth which it was supposed might pass the boat.

The day being fine made some observations for the regulation of the watch & for the magnetic variation, and at noon had a fine observation, from which the Latitude of this remarkable place was ascertained to be 31° 48'. 57". 5 — a little way up the river 1/4 of a mile there is a high ridge of primitive earth studded with an abundance of fragments of rock or stone, which appears to have been thrown up to the surface in a very irregular manner, the stone is of a friable nature, & some of it has the appearance of indurated clay; without it is blackish from being exposed to the air, and within of a greyish white: it is said that within the hill, the strata are regular, & that good grind-stones may be obtained. After dinner the boat was moved into the channel, where she stuck fast. Cables, ropes and pulies were got across and fixed to trees: handspokes were used to raise & push her along and we made some way thro' the bar, but evening coming on we were obliged to desist in hopes of being able to get over in the morning. Extremes of the thermom' 40°—70°. Wind N.W. Clear star light. Discovered a barge coming up behind us; she also grounded & sent her people out to search for the channel.

Thermometer in air 32° in river water 64° Wind N. Clear above. A fog upon the river, occasioned by the condensation of vapor arising from the surface of the river: the morning being very cold with a hoar-frost, the people were directed to get their breakfasts and prepare to use their exertions in getting the boat over the shoal; the day proved very fine with an agreeable able warm sunshine, but it was 1h p.m. before we got entirely over into floating water on the opposite shore, the men having upon this occasion exerted themselves to my entire satisfaction. The occupation of this day prevented us from making any astronomical observations. — After dinner we pushed on and arrived at the last of the rapids at this place; here we found a ledge of rocks across the entire bed of the river, but having previously sounded and discovered the best channel, we got over into deep water after grounding and rubbing two or three times: The river became again like a mill-pond without current, excepting a motion barely perceptible along the concave shore, the velocity was nevertheless very considerable upon the shoals where the depth of water was small. The whole of those first shoals or rapids embraced an extent of 11/2 miles; that is, the obstruction was not continual, but felt at short intervals along this space: Encamped about 11/2 mile above the last rapid. Extremes of the thermr. 32°- 73°. The evening proves fine & mild. Thermr. at 8h p.m. 62° Wind North. High pine land on the right — breadth of the river 100 yards.

Thermometer in air 40° — in river water 63°— Wind N.W. Clear—fog on the river. Continued our voyage & made some observations for the Longitude & magnetic variation at the hour of breakfast. High lands and a large Savannah seen on the right in the morning passed a rocky hill soon after and 'Bayou aux boeufs' on the right about 4 leagues from the rapids. At noon got a good observation, Latitude deduced 31 ° 53' 35". 5 — at 3h. p.m. the thermomr. was at 78° in the shade; the day was warm and the sun powerful: observed some more planes to the left: the river made several returning courses to day,to the southward of west. Thermomr. at 8h. p.m. 56° — Extremes 40°—73°. Sounded—3 fathoms — mud & sand. Made this day 12 miles 116 perches.

Thermomr in air 41°. in river water 62° Wind N.W. Fog on the river. Continued our voyage— The banks of the river seem to retain very little alluvial soil; on the opposite shores we see frequently to the water's edge the high land earth, which is a sandy loam of a greyish light color with streaks of red sand & clay; the soil is not rich, bearing great numbers of pines, interspersed with red oak, hickory and dog-wood. The river is now from 60 to 100 yards wide. At the hour of breakfast made three lunar observations, and one sun's altitude to regulate the watch, which with the observations of yesterday will give the rate of going of the watch proportioning for change of Latitude and departure as we advance in the progress of our voyage; I do not however think it of much importance

importance to regard those observations until we arrive at the post of Washita, which I suppose to be nearly the most easterly point of the river; there and at the hot-springs (the most westerly point we shall visit) we shall take time to make correct observations; all other points of the river will be ascertained with sufficient precision from our geometrical survey so frequently corrected by the Latitude. At Noon we found our Latitude to be 31° 58' 2". Having made some advantageous alterations in the arrangement of our benches and oars, we advanced with a little better speed; about 6 perches pr 1/2 minute which however does not exceed 21/4 miles pr. hour in water without any sensible opposition from the Current. The wind came about to S.W. in the evening; Thermr at 8h p.m. 62°. Extremes 41°—85°. Soundings — 3 fathoms mud & sand — made this day 14 miles 65 perches.

Thermomr in air 47°. in river water 60°. W.N.W. Fog on the river. Clear above. — Continued our voyage: the land on either bank seems to be from 30 to 40 feet high and does not improve in quality: pine-trees seen in most situations — nothing remarkable occurred except a rapid we passed in the afternoon, formed by a ledge of rocks which traversed the river, narrowing the water channel to about 30 yards, but the extent between the high banks was not less than a hundred. At noon found the Latitude] 30° 5′ 24″. It would appear from the distances run by our Log and time, when compared with the estimated distances by the french inhabitants and hunters, that their league scarcely exceeds two miles. Encamped near a sand beach favorable for hauling the sene & catched a sufficiency of fish to serve all the people for supper and breakfast. Thermr. at 8h. p.m. 60° Extremes 47°-83° made this day 15 miles, 150 perches.

Wednesday 31st. Thermomr. in air 44° in river water 62° Wind N.N.W. Clear — fog on the river — Continued our voyage. This morning met with shallow water & strong currents, our rate of going, deducting the velocity of the stream was reduced to 2 perches: got upon shoals about 8h. a.m. which detained us greatly, and impeded us more or less untill the afternoon; at noon we had a good observation; Lat: found 32° 10' 13" — at 2h p.m. got over the last shoal for this day & went on in good water untill the evening, the channel was very narrow, the sand bars at every point extending so far into the bend as to leave little more than the breadth of the boat of water sufficiently deep for her passage, altho' the water often covered a breadth of 70 to 80 yards upon the shoal: in the afternoon passed a little plantation or settlement on the right and at night came up with three others joining each other: here is a plane or prairie upon which those settlements are placed; from the regular slope of the land from the river bank towards the eastward, we may be assured the soil is alluvial, yet the bed of the river is now so deep that it is no longer subject to that inconvenience, but in the rear the Missisippi advances & sometimes leaves dry but a narrow stripe along the banks, it is however now more common that the extent of the fields cultivated (from 1/4 to 1/2 mile) remain dry during the season of the inundation: the soil here is very good but not equal to missisippi bottoms; it may be esteemed second rate. At a small distance to the East are extensive Cypress swamps, over which the waters of the inundation always stand to the depth of 15, 20 & 25 feet. On the west side after passing over the Valley of the river, whose breadth is various from 1/4 to 2 miles or more, the Land assumes a considerable elevation from 100 to 300 feet and extends all along to the settlements on the Red river; those high lands from report are poor & badly watered, being chiefly what is termed a pine-barren: there is here a ferry & a road of Communication between the Post of the Washita and the Natchez & a fork of this road passes on to the Settlement called the rapids on Red river, it is distant from this place by computation 150 miles.

From the experience we have had of this river and the information obtained, it appears that the present is the least favorable season for ascending this river with a boat of so considerable a draught of water as ours; the spring of the year is the most advantageous, the Missisippi then flows up into the beds of the inferior rivers, raising their waters sometimes within a few feet of the top of the banks; the small current is then often in favor of the ascending boat: this objection would vanish if light boats were used drawing only 6 or 8 inches of water & if well constructed might make with ease 12 leagues or even 40 miles p r. day; such ought to be the kind of boats for an expedition fitted out to explore; as little time as possible ought to be lost in moving, that more may be left for observation and research: in our actual situation our dayly progress seldom equals 14 or 15 miles, which is a sad drawback upon the accomplishment of the objects of an exploring expedition. On this part of the river lies a considerable grant of Land conceded by the Spanish Government to the Marquis of Maison rouge a french emigrant, who bequeathed it with all his property to M. Bouligny son of the late Colonel of the Louisiana regiment & by him sold to Daniel Clark; it is said to extend from the post of the Washita with a breadth of two leagues including the river down to the bayou Calumet, the computed distance of which along the river is called 30 leagues, but said to be not more than 12 in a direct line. Extremes of the thermomr. 44°-84°. Made this day 6 miles 165 perches.

Thermomr. in air 48°. in river water 62°— Calm—clear above, a little fog on the river. Having sounded last evening a shoal upon which there is 18 inches water in the deepest place, we prepared, by unloading part of our Cargo, to cross it: we obtained the use of two Canoes, which with a good deal of trouble enabled us to get over about noon: finding a Canoe so useful & being informed of other rapids and shoals before us, we bartered away a smaller canoe with a little cash for the larger of the two we had borrowed, proposing to put two of our best hunters into the empty Canoe by which they might keep a head & procure some game, & be ready on all emergencies to assist the Barge. Dined & continued our voyage; met with several retardments from shoals. Made only 4 miles 115 perches. Extremes of the thermomr. 48°-85° at 8h. p.m. 64° Weather extremely fine & agreeable, the slow progress of our boat being the only circumstance of regret, as tending to disappoint our prospects.

Thermomr. in air 48° in river water 62° light Friday 2d. clouds—Wind S.S.E. a little fog on the river.— Continued our voyage with immense sand bars in view at every point: the utmost care in steering necessary to keep clear of shoals and sunken logs, which latter were frequently very embarrassing: we suffered much detention this day from those causes, being twice fast upon a sunken log under water, and our boat being so unwieldy & heavy, there was no getting her off by any exertion of poles &c which could be made on board, a rope was carried ashore from the stern, & by that means she was hove backwards & cleared of the log: we lost 1 1/2 hour each time by two such accidents, & several times got upon shoals which delayed us greatly: light flat boats proper for the navigation of shallow waters would pass over all such obstacles without touching, & when they do touch, being light, they are easily pushed back; external keels are very improper for any boat upon the missisippi or any river where logs are to be encountered: our boat to her other in-conveniencies was provided with a keel, which added to her draught of water, made her much more difficult to get over a log or shoal, it being impossible to clear her by pushing latterally. Thermr. at 8h. p.m. 78° Extremes 48°-84° Made this day 8 miles 104 perches.

Thermr. in air 52° in river water 64° Some light clouds. Continued our voyage with very little variety, a great sameness appears as to the river and its banks. Altho' we got several times aground we were not so unfortunate as yesterday; immense sand bars or beaches with steep banks on the opposite shore continued to be the objects of our view, very Uttle alluvial land except at some points opposed to Cliffs, was to be seen: along the margin of the river, many humble plants are to be seen in flower at this late season, altho' the leaf falls from the trees of the forest: the great variety of tints which the foliage assumes before it separates finally from the parent stock, presents to the Eye an infinitude of beautiful landscapes, and if critically examined is perhaps not without its use: it will be found that the leaves of the same tree are all changed to the same Color, which is probably occasioned by the oxigen of the atmosphere acting upon vegetable matter deprived of the protecting power of its vital principle, & thereby calls forth its latent colorific properties: I have always remarked that the leaves of such trees whose barks and woods are known to produce a dye, are changed in autumn to the same Colour, which is extracted in the Dyer's vat from the woods more especially by the use of alumn or other mordant; whose predominant principle yields oxigen: thus the foliage of the hickory & the oak yielding the quercitron bark is changed before its fall to a beautiful yellow; other oaks assume a fawn colour, a liver or blood colour, and are also known to yield dyes of the same complexion: I am persuaded from the few observations I have made that this rule will be found general, and may therefore serve as an excellent guide to the Naturalist who directs his researches to the discovery of new objects for the use of the Dyer.

At noon we found ourselves in Latitude 32°. 17' 17" — nothing remarkable occurred in the afternoon, except a discovery made by D' Hunter (walking along the river side) of a substance resembling mineral Coal: I suppose from its appearance, that it is the Carbonated wood described by Kirwan and other Chemists: some specimens were preserved; it does not easily burn, but on being applied to the flame of a candle, it seemed to encrease it & yielded a faint smell resembling, in a slight degree that of the gum-lack of common sealing wax. In the evening passed over some rapids and shoals; bottom stone & gravel. Thermomr. at 8h. p.m. 72° Extremes 52°-86° Made this day 11 miles 140 perches.

Thermomr. in air 54° in river water 64° Clear. This has been an unfortunate day; the morning and afternoon were spent upon shoals and rapids with stoney & gravelly bottoms, the Men having been a great part of the time in the water. Got a good observation at noon; Latitude found 32° 21′ 10″. Made only 4 miles 233 perches, Thermomr. at 8h. p.m. 63°. Extremes 54°-83.

Thermr. in air 52° in river water 62° heavy fog & damp air. We were obliged this morning to take out part of our loading to enable us to pass over a shoal carrying only 18 inches water, which detained us untill near 10h a.m. — In the course of the day got upon several shoals of inferior note, but upon the whole we were more fortunate than usual, the water being generally deeper and with little current. We remarked a greater appearance of fertility as we approached the Settlement; the trees are of larger dimensions, & there is a due proportion of shrub or underwood, which was absent in the poorer lands; some fields of Cane began to appear, which is a sure indication of a fertile soil: we had also leisure to admire the beautiful tints assumed by the foliage of the vegitable world: it was apparent that the external leaves most exposed to the light & to a freer circulation of air, exhibited the first changes of Color, while those of the same plant under a thick shade still retained their deep verdure. The Willow tree pendent over the water, presents a fine deep yellow along the outline of the plant, from whence may be traced a regular gradation, thro' the admired lemon color down to the soft and delicate summer's green, which last in the shade, retains its full verdure: on other trees may be seen a deep blood color inclining to black, descending by regular shades to the palest pink mingled with green & from thence by similar gradation to the usual summer verdure of the plant: Leaves plucked from the tree at this season & preserved in the shade will retain their beautiful colors for a great length of time.

The river continues of the same general breadth, i. e. from 80 to 100 yards, but the water channel is often confined to 30 yards. The Atmosphere had this day a smokey or misty appearance; the Sun broke forth a little in the afternoon, but shone with diminished lusture. This smokey or misty appearance which in our Country is common in the months of november and december is attributed to a common practize of the Indians and Hunters, of firing the woods, planes or savannahs; the flames often extending themselves some hundred of miles, before the fire is extinguished; it is observed that rain always follows those conflagrations; sometimes the condensation of the smoke occasions a fine rain resembling a fog or thick dew, but at other times the rain is impetuous accompanied by thunder & lightening & immediately after it clears up fine, but not always without a continuation of the blue misty appearance of the Atmosphere.

Soft friable stone is frequently seen and great loads of gravel and sand upon the beaches; reddish Clay appears in strata much indurated and blackened by exposure to light and air. — The water of this river is extremely agreeable to drink and much clearer than that of the Ohio; in this respect it is very unlike its two neighbours the arcansa and red rivers; whose waters are extremely charged with earthy matter of a reddish brown color, giving to the water a chocolate-like appearance; & when those rivers are low their waters are not potable, being extremely brakish, from the great number of salt springs flowing into them & very probably from the beds of rock-salt over which, (it has been reported) they flow: the inconvenience from this cause, to voyagers, is not so great as might be apprehended, as it appears that brooks & springs of fine water falling into those rivers, particularly the arcansa, are very frequent, and may be met with often in the course of a days progress. — Altho' the water of the Washita river does not exhibit any saline impregnation, yet from report there are many situations in its neighbourhood where salt may be procured by digging pits in the places called salt-licks, where water is found equally strong with sea-water; we expect to examine some of those on our way upwards. Thermomr. at 8h. p.m. 58°. Extremes 52°-68°. Wind at N.W. Made this day 11 miles 276 perches.

Thermomr. 45° in air — in river water 64° heavy fog Wind W. Continued our voyage with better fortune; that is, we escaped any considerable obstructions from rapids and sand bars. No variety was to be seen in the appearance of the Country on either side the river. At noon got a fine observation about a league below the Post of Washita; Latitude deduced 32° 28'58"; by the sinuosities of the river it appears we are not more than a mile to the south of it: arrived there about 3 1/2h p.m. and were very politely received by Lieut Bowmar, who immediately offered us the hospitality of his Dwelling with all the services in his power. The Position called Fort Miro being the property of a private person, who was formerly civil commandant here, the Lieutenant has taken post about 400 yards lower and has built himself some log-houses and enclosed them with a slight stockade: this young officer exclusive of the manners of a polite Gentleman, appears to possess talents; he has formed a tollerably good chart of the river from its mouth to the Post, being the result of his own labors on the way up to take possession of the Post, this he has continued upwards from the best information he has been able to obtain; the whole gives a satisfactory idea of the river & part of the Country; we have also obtained some further information from the former Commandant a french man, and other persons here, of all which we have made notes & shall avail ri8o4 ourselves in the prosecution of our voyage.

Thermomr. at 8h p.m. Extremes 45°-79° Made this day 9 miles 257 perches; amounting in the whole to 196 miles 256 perches from the mouth of the red river to the Post of the Washita; and by the old computation 90 leagues.

Thermometer in air 52° in river water 64° Clear. Finding from past experience that the boat in which we have come up, would be improper for the continuation of our voyage, we made enquiry this morning for other craft, but it appears there is no great choice of boats at this place; prepared also for astronomical observation: being greatly interrupted by visitants who came to offer services &c we were prevented from making any useful observation un-till noon & even then we were incommoded: the Sun's meridian altitude gave the Lat: 32° 29' 52".5 but I was not perfectly satisfied with this observation; from the Causes mentioned I suspect the altitude was taken a little too late, & shall hope to correct if necessary by future observations. Thermr. at 8h p.m. 67° Extremes 52°-8o°

Thermomr. in air 53° in river water 58° Cloudy. This was a disagreeable, damp and cold day: made further enquiry for small boats with little success; found only one, which with another of the same burthen might answer our purpose: no observation made this day. Upon viewing the Country on the East of the river, it is evidently alluvial; the surface is equal with a gentle slope from the river towards the rear of the plantations; the land here is of excellent quality, being a rich black mold to the depth of a foot, under which there is a friable loam of a brownish liver color, which very probably will itself become a good soil when broken up & exposed to the influences of the elements. Thermr. at 8h. p.m. 56° Extremes 53°-61°

Thermomr. in air 42° in river water 61° Cloudy, damp & cold. Continued our search for proper vessels and heard of a flat-bottomed barge, which we expect will be very suitable, with the reduced loading we intend to carry with us, the boat will probably draw only 12 inches water: no observation, it being dark, cloudy & disagreeable all day. Extremes of the thermometer 42°-72°

Thermomr. in air 40° in river water 58° Clear—calm—this day having the appearance of being fine & serene, prepared for observation; and in the course of the day took altitudes of the Sun for the regulation of the watch and the magnetic variation: at noon found the Latitude a fine observation to be 32° 29' 35", this differs from that of the 7th by 17"; I give the preference to the result of this day, for reasons already mentioned; In the afternoon took distances of the moon from the Sun to the west of her and in the evening took distances of the moon from a Arietis to the east of her, which may be considered as a complete series for the determination of the Longitude.

Having hired the barge and agreed to give 1 1/4 dollar pr. day for the use of her, we had her brought along side: She is upwards of 50 feet long & 8 1/2 feet in breadth built tollerably flat, her bottom being still a little convex & being pretty well formed for running. This boat with some improvements is probably the best form for penetrating up shallow rivers, she is undoubtedly too long, as we shall certainly meet with short turns among logs & perhaps rocks, the passage of which might be facilitated by a shorter boat: got her loaded before the evening with a view to set off early next morning. She made some water—found about bed time, that she had made a great deal of water; kept her baled all night. Thermomr. at 8h p.m. 34°. Extremes 40°-72°

Thermometer in air 24° in river water 53° Clear — calm.— Got the Barge hauled ashore and caulked, which detained us untill the afternoon; got another good observation at noon, gives the latitude 32° 29' 30".5 that is 4 1/2" " less than yesterday, and as those two observations were both very good, the mean of the two results may be taken for the truth, the latitude of the place of observation will therefore be 32° 29' 32".75 and as the post or Garrison lies 4 1/2" " north of the place of observation, we may consider its latitude as fixed at 32° 29' 37". 25. Set out after dinner and made 3 miles. Encamped at the plantation of Baron Bastrop. It appears that this small settlement on the Washita & some of the Creeks falling into it contains only 500 persons of all ages & sexes; it is reported that there is a great deal of excellent land upon several considerable Creeks falling into the Washita & that consequently the Settlement is capable of great extension, & may be expected, with an accession of population to become very flourishing: there are three merchants settled at the post, who supply the inhabitants at very exorbitant prices with their necessaries; those with the garrison & two small planters and a tradesman or two constitute the present village: a great part of the inhabitants still continue the old practize of hunting during the winter season; their peltries go to the Merchant at a low rate in exchange for necessaries; in the summer these people content themselves with making corn barely sufficient for bread during the year; in this manner they always remain extremely poor; some few who have conquered their habits of indolence (which are always a consequence of the indian mode of life) and addicted themselves to agriculture, live more comfortably & taste a little the sweets of civilized life.

Thermomr. in air 36° —in river water 54° — Clear — Calm — Got on board some fresh beef and other provisions this morning, which detained us a little. Continued our voyage with a pilot on board hired at the rate of 30 dollars pr. month. Met with several shoals, but passed over them with ease, our Barge not drawing half the water of our own boat, & being also very light both in her timbers & planks; the appearance of the lands along the river is not very inviting, much pine woods upon a thin poor soil: to the right the settlements on the Bayou Barthelmi and Siard are said to be rich lands. At noon got an observation; Latitude 32° 34' 47 ". Made this day 16 miles 32 perches. Thermr. at 8h p.m. 54° — This Evening a little Cloudy.

Thermomr. in air 33° in river water 55° Fog on the river. Calm. Continued our voyage without change in the appearance of the Country: passed an Island and strong rapid at 8h. a.m. & arrived at a little settlement where we halted to breakfast a little below a chain of rocks crossing the channel between an Island & the mainland called Roquerau — great misery depicted in the Countenances of the Spaniard & his family inhabiting this little settlement, arising as it appears from extreme indolence: the wind at south indicates rain, with a dark cloudy sky: we find our situation greatly improved in our new barge, being able to go about 3 miles pr. hour when the Men use a little exertion: we pass without difficulty over shoals of 11 or 12 inches water. The river acquires a more spacious appearance, being in most places about 150 yards wide. Lost some time on the shoals and at half an hour past noon arrived at the last settlements. Began to rain — put ashore to dine—cleared up — set out and passed the mouth of Bayou Bar-thelmi on the right at 4h. p.m. being 12 computed leagues from the post. Here commences Baron Bastrop's great grant of land from the Spanish Government, being a square of twelve leagues to each side; a little exceeding one million of french acres, which I presume is more than double of what that Government granted to all persons within the Missisippi territory.— At 11h. a.m. passed Otter Bayou on the left. The Banks of the river continue to be about 30 feet high, of which 18 feet from the water are a clayey loam of a pale ash colour, upon which the river has deposited an alluvion of i 2 feet of light sandy soil, which appears in most places to be fertile, being of a brownish dark color. It seems that this species of land is here of small \ November breadth, not exceeding half a mile on each side, & may be called the valley of the river Washita, beyond which there is high land clothed chiefly with pines.—The Evening is cloudy & dark. Made this day 16 miles 312 perches — Thermomr. at 8h p.m. 62° — Extremes 33°—66°

Thermometer in air 44° in river water 55° —Clear — calm. Continued our voyage, the soil seems to be thin; the growth of the timber is small. We made small progress, being opposed by a head wind. Passed the * Bayou des buttes' in the forenoon ; this Creek derives its name from a vast number of Indian mounts discovered by the hunters along its course: we were detained an hour extraordinary at breakfast, from the necessity of repairing the rudder irons damaged going over a rocky flat. The margin of the river is clothed with such timber as generally grows on inundated lands, particularly a species of the white oak called vulgarly the overcup-oak; its timber is remarkably hard, solid, ponderous and durable, and it produces a large acorn in very great abundance upon which the Bear feeds; it is also very fattening for Hogs.

At noon got a good observation & found the latitude to be 32° 50' 8".5 — after dinner passed a long narrow Island. The face of the Country begins to change; the banks are low and steep, and the river generally deeper and much contracted, being from 30 to 50 yards wide; this low Country is 2 or 3 leagues wide on each side of the river, liable to overflow 12 or 15 feet above the level of the land, the soil is a very sandy loam in the neighbourhood of the river, & covered by such vegetables as are found on the inundated lands of the Missisippi; in short this tract presents every appearance of a newly created soil, very different from what we passed below: it may be supposed that there existed a great Lake within the space now occupied by this alluvial tract, which may have been drained off by a natural Canal worn out by the abrasion of the waters, and that since that period, the annual inundations have been replenishing this space with the alluvion of its waters; 18 or 20 feet of soil perpendicular is yet wanting to render it a fit habitation for man; it appears never the less to be well peopled by the beasts of the forest, several of which presented themselves to view, but they must all retire to the high lands during the season of the inundation. We now begin to see quantities of water fowl which are not generally very numerous untill the cold rains and frost drive them to us from the northward. Fish is not so abundant in this river as might be expected; at the post we were informed that the river had been extremely full of fish untill the year 1799, when the waters of the inundation of the Missisippi dammed up the Washita river some distance above the Post and produced a stagnation and consequent corruption of the waters, which destroyed all the fish within the influence of this cause. The river continues to be contracted, seldom exceeding 60 yards and generally deep; no current is felt excepting in places a little shallower than the rest. — Thermometer at 8h. p.m. 44°. Extremes 44°.—58°. Clear.

Thermometer in air 38°. in river water 54°— Clouds — Calm. Continued our voyage thro' a Country of the same appearance as yesterday. Passed some rapids without difficulty — the banks still continue low; from ten to 15 feet above the present level of the river; the water marks on the trees from 15 to 20 feet. Landed to observe about 90 yards higher than the upper point of the Island of Mallet, judging that we were not far from Lat. 33° the division line between the territories of Orleans and Louisiana; we found the Latitude by a very good observation to be 32° 59'27".5. The Island of Mallet is on the right of the main channel, and the place of observation being 90 yards N 45° E from the upper point of the Island. Making allowance for the breadth of the river (50 yards), Latitude 33° may be found from the above data when the Jurisdiction of the territories may require it, this Island of Mallet being very well known to the Hunters. Should time and circumstances permit on our return, a 2d meridian altitude of the Sun may be taken and a proper mark set up in Lat: 33° — In general the bed of the river along this alluvial country is fully covered by water from bank to bank & the navigation good, but to day at 3h p.m. we passed 3 contiguous sand-bars or beaches called 'les trois bat-tures'; & at three & a half hours p.m. the 'bayou des grand Marais' (great Marsh Creek) on the right: passed also in the evening on the same side 'la Cypriere Chattelrau': a point of high land approaches within half a mile of the river on the right. Thermomr. at 8h. p.m. 50° — Extremes 33°—60°. Made this day 16 miles 42 perches. This days voyage was shortened by an indisposition which confined me to the tent un-till the hour of breakfast.

Thermomr. in air 38° in river water 54° — Cloudy—Calm. Set out at 6h 58' and continued our voyage, the wind rises northerly against us, nevertheless we make 7 1/2 perches pr. 1/2 min: whereas with our former boat we should not have exceeded 4 per: still however our improved progress is short of the velocity which a boat for our purpose ought to attain; it should not fall short of 12 per: pr. 1/2 min: which would be about 4 1/2 miles pr. hour. No observation today day the weather being cloudy, damp and disagreeable. Between 11 & 12 o'clock passed on the right the 'marais de la Saline' (Salt-lick marsh) There is here a small marshy lake, but it is not intended by its name to convey any idea of a property of brackishness in the lake or marsh, but merely that it is contiguous to some of the licks, which are sometimes termed * Saline' & sometimes * glaise,' being generally found in compact clay which might serve for potter's ware; the bayou de la Tulipe forms a communication between the lake and the river: there is opposite to this place a point of high land forming a promontory and advancing within a mile of the river, to which boats resort when the low grounds are under water: a short league after, we came to the mouth of the grand bayou de la Saline (Salt-lick Creek) on the right; this is a creek of considerable length & tollerably good navigation for small boats, the Hunters ascend it to an extent of a hundred of their leagues in pursuing their game. They all agree that none of the springs which feed this Creek are salt; it has obtained its name from many buffalo salt licks which have been discovered near to the Creek. Altho' most of those licks by digging will furnish water holding in solution more or less marine salt, yet we have reason to believe that many of them would produce Nitre. We now begin to observe a stratum of a dirty white colored clay under the alluvial soil; this clay is similar to what we observed before we entered the alluvial tract; we have therefore reason to expect, that we are gradually emerging from this sunken tract & shall soon ascend into the high land country. Made this day 17 miles 185 perches. In the evening it began to rain. Thermomr. at 8h. p.m. 42° Extremes 38° — 51°

Thermomr. in air 40° in river water 54° — fog on the river—calm — river risen 2 1/2 inches during the night.

Continued our voyage; the low lands are still alluvial, at least to a certain depth; an under stratum of clay appears in many places, where the banks have been undermined & broken down: we remarked that since we entered the alluvial country about 32° 52' Lat: we have seen no long moss (Tilandsia) altho' this low damp country seems in all respects well adapted to favor its production; upon enquiry of our Pilot, he informs us, we shall see no more of it; probably its limit of vegetation northerly may be fixed by nature near to 33° Lat: Saw a great quantity of the long-leaf pine, which is frequently found in rich & even inundated lands as is the case here; the short leaf or pitch pine on the contrary is always found upon arid lands & generally in sandy & lofty situations; but our Country furnishes it in a hard meagre clay. In the forenoon saw the first swan which was 1 November shot by one of our hunters; it was a soUtary one whose mate had probably been killed: this is the season when the poor inhabitants of the settlement of the Washita turn out to make their annual hunt; they carry no provision with them but a little Indian corn, depending on their guns and ammunition for the rest. The Deer is now fat & their skins in perfection; the Bear also is now in his prime with regard to the quality of his fur and the quantity of fat or oil which he yields, he has been feeding luxuriously for some time upon the autumnal fruits of the forest, such as pirsimmons, grapes, pawpaws, walnuts, packawns, hickory-nuts, chinquapins, beech-mast, a great variety of acorns &c &c; it is however well known (notwithstanding the fancies of some writers) that the Bear does not confine himself to vegetable food; the planters have ample experience of his carnivorous disposition. He is particularly fond of Hog's flesh, but no animal escapes him that he is able to conquer: Sheep & Calves are frequently his prey and he often destroys the fawn when he stumbles upon it; he cannot however discover it by the sense of smelling notwithstanding the excellence of his scent; Nature has protected the helpless young by denying it the property of leaving any effluvium upon its tract, which property is so powerful in the old Deer: perhaps it may not be generally known to Naturalists, that between the hoofs of Deer &c is found a sac with its mouth inclining upwards; this sac always contains more or less musk, which by escaping over the opening in proportion as it is secreted, gives to the foot the property of leaving on the ground a scent wherever it passes: during the rutting season the musk is most abundant particularly in old males, which may often be smelt at a considerable distance by the hunters.

The Bear unlike to most other beasts of pray does not kill the animal immediately he has seized upon, but regardless of its strugles, cries and lamentations, fastens upon it and (if the expression may be allowed) devours it alive: the taste of Mr. Bruce & his Abyssinians may have been formed upon this excellent model. —The hunters count much of their profits from the oil drawn from the Bear's fat, which at New-Orleans is always of ready sale, and is much esteemed for its wholesomeness in cooking, being preferred to butter or hog's lard; it is found to keep longer than any other oil of the same nature, without turning rancid: they have a method of boiling it from time to time upon sweet-bay leaves which restores it or facilitates its conservation. At noon found our Latitude to be 33° 13' 16".5. In the afternoon saw a small Aligator, which we did not expect in so northern a situation; passed a few rapids & saw cane brakes on both sides, the canes of a small size, \ November which demonstrates that the water does not surmount the bank above a few feet: the river widens & a number of sand-beaches are seen. Thermr. at 8h p.m. 44° — Extremes 40° —41°. Made this day 15 miles 308 perches.

Thermr. in air 32° — in river water 52° — Serene—Calm—river seems rather on the rise. Set out at7h. 20'and continued our voyage; passed along a narrow passage this morning, about 70 feet wide; the whole of the water of the river runs thro' this passage; on the left the old channel of the usual breadth leaves an interval which becomes an Island when the water passes along the old bed of the river during freshes: Came up to a place at the hour of breakfast where there is an appearance of some clearing called * Cache la Tulipe' (Tulip's hiding place) this is the name of a french hunter who concealed his property in this place. It continues to be a practize of both white and red hunters, to deposit their skins &c. often suspended to poles or laid over a pole placed upon two forked posts in sight of the river, untill their return from hunting; these deposits are considered as sacred and few examples exist of their being plundered.

The banks of the river have now the appearance of the high land soil, with a stratum of 3 or 4 feet of alluvion deposited thereon by the superstratum is greyish and very sandy with a small admixture of loam, which indicates the poverty of the mountains and uplands where the sources of the river take their rise. At noon we found our Latitude to be 33° 17'13" — In the afternoon passed on the right, the entrance of a bay, which within must form a great lake during the inundation. We now see a considerable number of the long-leaf pine tree; the canes along the bank have a better appearance being much larger in size, this indicates a better or more elevated soil: Canes subject to be inundated, i. e. the land to be inundated 3,4 or 5 feet, are always small and tough; they grow much finer where there is little or no inundation, provided the soil be rich & loose. Passed a high hill (300 feet) on the left clothed with lofty pine trees. Thermomr. at 8h. p.m. 57°: cloudy weather threatens rain. Made this day 18 miles 75 perches. Having been much indisposed for some days past, the number of remarks are probably fewer than might have been made—I still remain in the same situation.

Thermr. in air 54°—in river water 54° — Cloudy—Calm — river at a stand. Set out at 6h. 56' and continued our voyage. The banks present still more the appearance of the high land soil, the under stratum being a pale yellowish clay and the alluvial soil of a dirty white sur- [1804 mounted by a thin covering of a brownish vegetable earth: the trees begin to have a better appearance, growing to a considerable size and height, tho' much inferior to those of the alluvial banks of the Missisippi: passed the * bayou de hachis * on the left this morning; points of high land not subject to be overflowed frequently touch the river, the valley is said to be league or more in breadth on each side of the river: passed some pine hills on the left called * Cote deCham-pignole', the river has been narrow during the course of this day's voyage, not exceeding on the average from 50 to 60 yards. Thermometer at 8h. p.m. 62° Extremes 54°-67° Made this day 18 miles 120 perches.

Thermr. in air 59° in river water 54° — Cloudy— Calm. No change in the river. Set off at 6h 48' — The banks of the river appear to be higher and the river wider, we meet with a number of sand beaches and some rapids but good deep water between them. At 7 1/2 a.m. passed a creek which forms a deep ravine in the high lands and has been called 'Chemin Convert' — a little past 8h. we ascended a rapid where the water was confined to a breadth of 40 yards, a little farther we had to quit the great channel on account of its shallowness and rapidity, & passed along a narrow channel 60 feet wide: without a guide I guide a Stranger would have taken this passage for a Creek. Between 11 and 12h. saw analigator, which surprised us much at this late season & so far north. The Banks (exclusive of the large timber) are covered by cane or thick underbrush, frequently so interwoven with thorns and briars, as to be impenetrable, untill the way is cut with an edge tool: we see also some species of timber not common below, such as Birch, Maple, holly & two kinds of timber to which no other name has yet been given but * Bois du bord de I'eau* (water side wood). Pirsimmons and small black grapes are plenty in some situations; the first are often very large and excellent, the last a mixture of sweet and tart; those are also common on the Missisippi. The weather being cloudy we did not land to observe. In the afternoon observed some feruginous earth on the right: the margin is frequently fringed with a variety of plants & vines, of the latter several species of the convolvulus, which no doubt in their season ornament this river with their elegant flowers. Thermomr. at 8h p.m. 54° Extremes 54° — 62° Made this day 18 miles 308 perches.

Thermr. in air 43° in river water 54° — a little fog— calm. Set out & passed a hill and cliff I GO feet perpendicular crowned with lofty pines called ‘Cote de Finn’ (Finn's hill) a chain of high land continues some distance on the left; the cliff presents the appearance of an ash colored clay; passed a strong rapid, and a little farther a Creek on the right called Bayou d'Acassia (Locust Creek): The river varies here from 80 to 100 yards wide; we frequently see indications of iron along the banks and some thin strata of ore from 1/2 inch to 3 inches thick, but no other metalic appearance, nor indeed any thing uncommon in the fossil kingdom; a little cloudy this morning, but cleared up before noon & got ashore hastily at a steep inconvenient place among trees and brush, and had a tollera-bly good observation notwithstanding: Latitude found 33° 29' 29". The day proves mild, warm and agreeable, which acted as a restorative to myself and others who had been indisposed for some days past: Thermr. at 3h p.m. 72° Altho' Ducks, Geese and Turkeys are often seen, yet we cannot say they are in that abundance which from report we expected, and they are so shy, that we seldom can get a shot from our large boat; but by sending the canoe a head some game is procured; it is probable that higher up, we shall be more successful. Thermr.; at 8h. p.m. 58° — Extremes 43° — 72° Made this day 18 miles 36 perches.

Thermr. in air 40! in river water 53° — Light clouds — calm. — No change this morning in the general appearance of the country, the timber such as has been mentioned, with an increasing proportion of holly, birch, maple and beautiful pine-trees; at 10 1/2h a.m. came to the road of the Cadadoquis Indian Nation leading to the Arcansa Nation; a little beyond this is the Ecor a Fabri (Fabri's Cliffs) 80 to 100 feet high: it is reported that a line of demarkation run between the french and Spanish provinces, when the former possessed Louisiana, crossed the river at this place; and it is said that Fabri a french-man & perhaps the supposed Engineer deposited lead near the cliff in the direction of the line: we could not however obtain any authenticated account of this matter, and it is not generally believed: a little farther is a smaller cliff called *le petite cor a Fabri' (the little cliff of Fabri); those cliffs appear to be composed chiefly of ash-colored sand with a stratum of clay at the base, such as reigns all along under the banks of this river. The day being hazy and cloudy we made no observation for the Latitude at noon. In the afternoon we encountered a great many difficult rapids, the current of the river being frequently confined to a very small space, where the depth of water is but barely sufficient for the passage of the boat; the additional rapidity of the current indicates that we are ascending into a higher country. The water of the river now becomes extremely clear and is equal to any in its very agreeable taste as a drinking water. The general breadth of the river to day has been about 80 yards, altho' in certain places not above one half of this quantity. We now find immense beaches of gravel and sand, over which the river passes, in the season of its floods with the rapidity of a torrent, carrying with it vast quantities of drift wood which are in many places piled up in prodigious masses, lying 20 feet above the present level of the water, and points out to us already the danger of ascending or descending this river in certain degrees of its floods: accidents nevertheless are rare with the canoes of the Country; ours is the first barge of so large a size that ever ascended this river: passed a very intricate rapid in the evening, which we could not get up untill we had carried a rope ashore. Encamped upon an elevated gravel beach: Thermr at 8h p.m. 54° Extremes 40°—68° Made this day 14 miles 317 Perches.

This day an unlucky accident happened, which was very nigh being extremely serious. Doctor Hunter was employed in the cabin of the boat loading one of his pistols; he held it between his legs upon a bench with his head almost over the muzzel: while in the act of ramming down the ball, the pommel slipt from the bench & the cock of the lock came with force against it, which giving way discharged the pistol, the rammer and ball passed thro' the fingers & thumb of the right hand & also thro' the brim of the hat within little more than an inch of the Doctor's forehead; his thumb & fingers were much torn, but no bone was broken, the concussion of the head was most severely felt: the bottom of a new powder horn (not well secured) which lay upon the table was forced outwards & the powder partly spilt upon the table, which providentially did not take fire altho' the wadding was found smoking upon the table: the circumstance of the bottom of the powder-horn being forced outwards, points out a curious effect of the elastic power of the air, viz after sustaining a considerable compression the returning vibration causes a partial rarefaction, & at the same instant the common air confined within bodies involved by the sphere of rarefaction, exerting its spring to restore the equilibrium, forces outwards all obstacles not sufficiently secured to resist its action. The Doctor's wounds were dressed; he suffered great pain and debility, but after some repose felt better in the evening.

Friday 23d Therms in air 48° in river water 54°—light clouds — calm. River upon the fall. Set off and continued our navigation thro' difficult passages; the river is broken into a number of small streams by Islands, short turning rapids, sunken logs, shoals, bars, and every impediment to be expected in our situation, and this continued at short intervals during the whole of the day, so that our courses and distances cannot be expected to be perfect; every allowance which could be judged necessary at the moment was made: I fortunately obtained a good observation of the Sun's mer: altitude in the interval of some shifting clouds: Latitude deduced 33° 41' 35'. The banks of the river as we ascend are less elevated, being now only from 9 to 12 feet, and probably the freshes surmount them some feet; we passed a great number of high & low gravel and sand-beaches; on those were to be seen fragments of stone of all forms & of a great variety of colors; some highly polished and rounded by friction, and may have belonged to the mountains, rivers and oceans of a World, from the ruins of which the Globe we inhabit may have been formed. The banks of the river in this upper Country suffer greatly from abrasion, one side and sometimes both being broken down by every flood. We saw nothing to day worth noticing, no change being observable in the appearance of the lands and timber along the hills and banks of the river: we found on a gravel beach some fragments of the same kind of matter we found lower down resembling pit-coal; it burns with-out blaze to a white ash, but will not consume (in common temperature) without other fuel: under the burning glass, it emits smoke & consumes, yielding a faint smell of sealing wax; it is light and friable, & affords very little evidence of being penetrated by bituminous matter. Thermr at 8 th p.m. 54° Extremes 48°72° Made 13 miles 28 perches.

Saturday 24th Thermr in air 48° in river water 54° — light clouds — calm—river at a stand. Set off & continued our voyage thro' a country in all respects similar to that thro' which we passed yesterday, excepting that our obstacles from strong rapids are considerably augmented: at a place on the left called 'Auges d'Arclon' (Arclon's troughs) we observed some laminated iron ore, and a stratum of tenacious black sand shining with minute chrystals. The general breadth of the river is now 80 yards, tho' in many places greatly enlarged by Islands & shallows, and at other places contracted to 80 or 100 feet. The river is now in many places rocky of a greyish color & rather friable. Observed some willow very different from what is found below and on the banks of the Missisippi, the last is very brittle, this on the contrary is extremely pliant & resembles the osier, of which it is probably a species, I propose on our return to take some plants along with us; its foliage is now of a golden yellow & falling: we also found some of the larger Whortle-berry in fruit, the berry is of a Sub-acid agreeable taste, the leaves not yet fallen of a beautiful crimson.

The weather being cloudy we had no observation at noon & went on to dine at the forks of the Washita and Missouri the lesser; the latter comes in from the left hand and is a considerable branch, perhaps about 1/4 of the Washita: Hunters often ascend the little missouri, but they are not inclined to penetrate far up, because this branch reaches near to the great planes or prairies upon the red river, which are often visited by the lesser Osage Tribe settled on the river Arcansa: These last frequently carry war into the Cadadoquis tribe who are settled on the red river about W.S.W. from this place, and indeed they are reported not to spare any nation or people. They do not come upon the head waters of the Washita, because they are surrounded by a number of mountains or steep hills rising behind each other, and so extremely difficult to travel over, that those savages perceiving no desireable object, do not attempt to penetrate to the river, & it is supposed to be unknown to the nation: The Cadadoquis (or Cadaux as the french who are fond of abbreviations generally pronounce the word) may be considered as Spanish Indians; They boast, I am told with truth, that they never have imbrued their hands in the blood of a white Man: it is reported (perhaps falsely) that they excited to enmity by the Spanish officers at Nacocdoches against the Americans.

We are told there is a mine up the little Missouri, it is said that the stream runs over a bright splendid bed of mineral of a yellowish and whitish color, it is most probably martial pyrites: some 30 years ago, several of the inhabitants hunters worked upon this mine and sent a quantity of the ore to the Government at New Orleans, but they were prohibited from working any more. Thermtr at 3h p.m. 59° Extremes 48°-72° Made this day by a very uncertain reckoning 11 miles 152 Perches.

Sunday 25th This morning proved very rainy, having commenced raining before day, we were therefore constrained to continue encamped: a cessation took place after breakfast, which gave us some hopes of being able to proceed, but this was not of long duration; the rain recommenced and we remained all day in our tents. We have the consolation however to expect that the river will rise a little in consequence of the rain, which will facilitate our ascent over the shoals that are to be expected above. Thermtr at 8h p.m. 62° Extremes 54°- 70°

Monday 26th Thermtr 50°— river water 57°— clear above. Calm— river risen 3 1/4 inches in the night. Contrary to expectation the morning proved not only fine and serene, but of a mild, agreeable temperature. In general after the winter season sets in, the changes in the weather are made by extremes. A day or two of rain is commonly succeeded by a cold and blowing north wester, and the day following a frost of some severity, which has not been the course upon this last occasion, it appears also that the rain has raised the temperature of the river 3° The water is now remarkably clear and fine, and it does not seem to have been discoloured by the last rain. There is still a great sameness in the appearance of the river banks, the Islands are skirted with osier, and immediately within on the bank grows a range of birch trees & some willows; the more elevated banks of the River are clothed by a thick growth of Cane & the timber which rises above the Cane is such as has been already mentioned Viz. oak, white, black, and red; many species of each: black Maple, white maple,Sycamore,Elm several species. Ash, hicory many species. Dog wood, Holly, Iron wood &c —

Saw a number of yellow butterflies fluttering about the banks of the River. We continue to encounter the same obstacles from the shoals & rapids; the valley of the river, in its present low state is filled with Islands, which dividing the current reduces the depth of the Channel; We find no great difliculty where the water is collected into a single channel. Our Pilot informs there is a body of excellent land upon the little Missouri & more especially on the Creek called the 'Bayou a terre noire,' which falls into the little Missouri; this land reaches within a few miles of the Washita, and is said to extend to the Red River being connected with the great prairies above the Cadaux nation & in the proximity of the red River: this rich tract of Country is said to be of very considerable extent perhaps a square of 30 miles & is connected with the great prairies which are the hunting grounds of the Cadaux Nation, consisting of about 200 warriors, they are warlike, but frequently unable to defend themselves against the tribe of Osages who are settled upon the Arcansa river, who passing round the mountains which give birth to the Washita, along the prairies which enclose those mountains on the West and seperate them from the main Chain of mountains which furnish the waters of the red & arcansa river, pass down in the Cadaux Country & rob & plunder them of their horses and other effects, & not unfrequently take a few scalps; for it seems that this detached tribe of the Osages is a lawless gang of robbers, making war with the whole world.

Thermtr at 8h p.m. 62°—Extremes 5o°-68° Made 12 miles 21 Perches.

Tuesday 27th Thermtr 54°—river water 58°—Cloudy — risen above the mark which was 12 inches out of water: set off at 7h 1'. and continued our Voyage with the same obstacles from rapids, which were very violent at particular points from the encreased body of water descending from the higher position; but we obtained at the same time the advantage of approaching the willows & even passing thro' them, to avoid the most difficult passes. During the hour of breakfast the river rose 1 1/2 inches perpendicular. The general height of the main banks is now from 6 to 12 feet above the level of the water, and the land is rather of a better quality, the Canes &c shewing a more luxuriant vegetation: the superficial soil subject to inundation is of brownish appearance greatly mixed with Sand; At noon arrived at 'cache a Macon' (Masons hiding place) on the right, stopped here for dinner. Having been informed of some pit coal reported to be in the neighbourhood, we determined to explore its position. Doctor Hunter with the Pilot set out for this purpose, & at about 1 1/2 mile N.W. of the Boat found in the bed of a Creek a substance similar to what we had formerly seen under the name of coal; some pieces of it were very black, solid, & of a homogenous appearance greatly resembling pit Coal, but it was deficient in ponderosity, & did not seem to be penetrated by bituminous matter in a sufficient degree to constitute Coal; We may perhaps therefore be permitted to consider it as vegitable matter in a certain stage of its progress of transmutation into Coal, we were the more confirmed in this opinion by discovering other fragments, which still retained very evidently the fibrous texture of wood, one peice in particular seemed to have been a large chip taken out by the felling ax. Those last pieces were not so far advanced in the transmuting progress as the first mentioned; although black it was not so perfect, being rather a very dark brown black, retaining the exact form & shape of the wood as it had been separated from the log: as this incipient or imperfect Coal was found imbedded among clay & gravel, which appeared to have been washed down by the torrent, no clue could be found to lead to a discovery of the process by which nature effects so extraordinary a change, an ingenious enquirer placed in favorable circumstances, will probably have the good fortune to make this discovery: The time may arrive when the Planter who shall be clearing his Plantation or farm of useless timber, will be enabled from the instructions of the Chemist to place the whole in a situation to be transmuted into an usefull article capable of long preservation. This is no doubt the Carbonated wood described by Kirwan & other Chemists. We found along the banks a species of the white thorn loaded with abundance of ripe fruit, being a small oval berry of a cornelian colour & agreeable sweetish taste; the whortle berry was also found in the same situation. The white maple has now a beautiful appearance, its leaves before their fall first assume a pale yellow, but this soon fades, and they change into a splendid white and present at some distance the appearance of clusters of elegant flowers. Being cloudy at noon we made no observation for the Latitude.

We suppose the river to have risen at least 30 inches and it now flows with great rapidity, which obliges us to pass sometimes among the willows to avoid its impetuosity: this afternoon we passed some reaches of the river, which were very handsome, being of considerable length, and at least 150 yards wide, and flowing with a full current from bank to bank. We found a considerable number of unknown (to us) plants some of them very handsome, but our very limited knowledge in practical botany, did not enable us to discover what they were, particularly as they were not in flower. Made this day 13 miles 39 perches. Thermr at 8h p.m. 66° Extremes 54°-71°

Thermr: 68° — river water 60° fallen 4 inches Wednesday 28th in the night — Cloudy — calm. Set off at 7h 5' and continued our voyage, meeting the same species of obstacles as yesterday—the river appears to increase in width being sometimes 170 yards broad, flowing at this time with a full tide from shore to shore. The Current is in some places extremely rapid, that is where the depth of the Channel is diminished and the bed contracted, in such situations we are under the necessity of catching hold of the willows &c, & hauling up along shore, oars and poles being insufficient to stem the violence of the torrent; in other situations for miles together the current is inconsiderable, in fact it is nothing under the shelter of the points, this advantage is the result of the enlargement and encreased depth of the river. Being cloudy we had no observation for the Latitude. Some of our people who walked out with their guns at the hour of dinner discovered some buffalo tracts we are therfore in hopes soon of getting some fresh beef. We past some beautifull Pine Forests. The Lands in many places appeared of a pretty good quality producing trees and a variety of vegetable subjects indicating a good soil. Encamped in the evening after making by our reckoning 12 miles 255 perches. Here we found an old dutch Hunter with his party consisting in all of 5 persons. This man has resided 40 years on the Washita and before that period has been up the arcansa river, the white river and the river St Francis; the two last he informed us are small rivers of difficult navigation similar to that we are now upon, but the Arcansa river is a river of great magnitude, a large and broad channel, and when the river is low with long and great sand beaches like to the missisippi. So far as he has been up, the navigation is safe and commodious, without any impediment from rapids or shoals, upon all those rivers, the soil is of the first rate quality, the countries are of easy access, being lofty open forests, unembarrassed by canes & other under growth: the lands on the Arcansa are generally level and not subject to inundation, with here and there gently rising hills. The river is not embarrassed with rocks so far as this informant has ascended, but its bed is composed of mud and sand: the water of the river is extremely bad to drink, being of a disagreeable red colour and very brackish when low, a multitude of creeks which flow into the river furnish sweet water, which the voyager is obliged to carry in vessels on board to supply his immediate wants, hence this inconvenience is not of much moment. This man confirms the frequent reports given of silver being abundant up this river; he has not been so high as to see it himself, but says he has received a silver pin from a hunter who assured him that he himself collected the virgin silver from the rock, out of which he made the Epinglete by hammering it out; The tribe of Ozages live higher up than this position, but the hunters rarely go so high, being afraid of those savages who are at war with the world and destroy all strangers they can meet with. It is reported that the arcansa nation with a part of the Chactaws, Chicasaws, Shaw-nese &c. have formed a league and are actually gone or going 800 strong against those depredators, with a view to destroy or drive them entirely off and possess themselves of their fine prairies which are most abundant hunting grounds, being plentifully stocked in Buffalo, Elk, Deer, Bear and every other beast of the chase, common to those Latitudes in America. Our old Dutch Hunter informs us of a saline or salt spring from which he has frequently supplied himself with salt by evaporation, we shall visit it in the morning, being only half a league distant. Made 12 miles 255 perches. Thermr at 8. p.m. 73° Extremes 68°-78°


Thursday 29, November 1804. Thermr 72° river water 62° — Cloudy — wind South, blew strong all night — This morning Doctor Hunter went with a party and the old dutch hunter to visit the saline, which was found in the bottom of the bed of a dry gully near a Creek; after digging a few feet found the water which proved very brackish to the taste; the saline lies about 1 1/2 mile northerly from our encampment, a creek falls into the river a little above our encampment, being the same which communicates with the saline, a quantity of the water was brought into camp whose specific gravity was carefully ascertained by comparison with the river water and found to be as 1 .02116 + to i. Evaporated 10 quarts of the water which produced a saline mass weighing when dry 8 ounces. It began to rain about 9h a.m. which obliged us to remain in camp untill after dinner, when it cleared up, and we set out at ih. 27′ p.m., the water of the river has now become whitish and less transparent in consequence of the rain and appears to be rising again altho' it seemed to have stopped since last night: the water was tol-lerably favorable in the afternoon having met with only one rapid of difficulty and considerable length: since we have had so much difficulty to encounter from the shoals and violence of the current, the Soldiers have exerted themselves with a considerable degree of vigor and perseverence and seem desireous that we should accomplish the end of our voyage. Therms at 8!" p.m. 52° Extremes 52°-76° Made this day 8 miles 2 perches. The weather clears up and begins to grow cold, we expect a north-wester in the morning.

Therm! in air 38° in river water 60° — river th risen 19 inches — clear calm. Set off & continued our voyage against a strong current during the greatest part of the day, altho' frequently we found favorable eddies or little or no Current where the bed of the river became enlarged, which sometimes extended to 150 and even 170

i8o4 1 yards in breadth. Saw great flocks of Turkeys November j ^q ^^y^ ^^^ of which were killed. At lo}^ ^ a.m. arrived at the large branch on the left called * Fourche des Cadaux' (Cadadoquis fork) about I GO yards wide at its entrance into the Washita; immediately beyond which on the same side the land is considerable elevated (ab! 300 feet.) The wind from North and N.W. opposed us most of the day, so that our progress was not very rapid. At noon landed & observed the Sun's altitude in a difficult place, in some measure thro' the branches of trees, the Latitude deduced was 34° 11' 37". As we advance to the north we perceive more of the effects of winter; the trees are now nearly stripped of their foliage, which a week below seemed to be nearly entire, altho' changed in color: Being informed of a saline or salt-lick, we landed before 3^ p.m. and the Doctor with a party went to view it, therm' at 3^ 57° The Doctor returned in the evening with a quantity of water from the saline, which from taste appeared to be less impregnated than the former, and on trial its specific gravity was found to be when compared with the river water, which at that time was principally rain water, i.o 17647. This salt pit was found in a low flat place subject to be overflowed from the river, it was wet and muddy, the earth on the surface yellowish, but on digging into the stratum which yielded the salt water, it was found to be a bluish clay; probably

ably the water was fresher in consequence of J1804 the rain of the day before, which had not fallen [November when the first water was collected. Ten quarts of this last water produced by evaporation six ounces of a saline mass, which from taste was principally marine salt, it was however evident that it contained besides marine salt, some soda and a bitter salt, which last no doubt was muri-ated magnesia, but the marine salt greatly predominated. Made 7 miles 28 perches.

Therm' in air 32? in river water 54° Clear— jSaturday calm — river fallen 18 inches. The morning was [December v} cold & damp; we passed a considerable Island on the right about ^ of a mile in length, called * Isle du bayou des roches' (rocky creek Island) — we were greatly impeded this day by rapids, it was with much difficulty, some hazard, & great exertion of the men, that we ascended some of the rapids: we passed several points of high land full of rocks and stones, much harder and more solid than we have yet seen; the rocks were all silicious, and we began to observe, that their fissures were penetrated by sparry matter: indications of iron were frequent, & even fragments of poor ore, but no rich ores of that or any other mettal have presented themselves to view. Some of the hills appear to be well adapted to the cultivation of the vine, the soil being a sandy loam with a considerable proportion of gravel & stone


1804 1 and a superficial covering of good vegetable black December J g^rth: the natural productions were sufficiently luxuriant, consisting of several varieties of oak, Pine, Dogw^ood, Holly &c with a scattering underwood of Whortleberry, Hawthorn, China-briar and a variety of small vines. It is probable that a skilful Vigneron, who shall undertake the establishment of a Vineyard in a well-chosen position in this neighbourhood, will find his labors amply compensated; the market of New Orleans is at hand, where his wines (if good) may be immediately sold and paid for at a high price. At noon we were detained upon a very bad rapid

6 shoal, by which we lost the opportunity of making a meridian observation: In the evening also we landed a little earlier than usual at the foot of a long and difficult rapid, which we did not think it prudent to encounter so late, from the danger of getting fast upon it all night: we are now encamped upon the declivity of one of those hills about 150 feet high, commanding a fine prospect both up and down the river, & will at a future day become a rich Vineyard. Therms at S!' p.m. 35° Extremes 3 2°-58° Made this day

7 miles 148 perches.

Sunday 2"? Therm' in air 30° in river water 50° Clear — calm—river fallen 4 inches. Continued our voyage and passed over a series of strong rapids, which opposed us untill the hour of breakfast. The


Country appears now to wear a new aspect; high f 1804 lands and rocks frequently approach the river; \December the rocks are extremely hard, and altho' the grain resembles that of free-stone, yet the stone is hard enough to be used for the purpose of hand-mill stones, to which object it has been applied; the river beaches also exhibit a great variety of fragments of flint and other stone of the most solid kinds; the quality of the land seems to improve, the superficial stratum of Vegetable earth being of considerable thickness (from 6 to 12 inches) and of a dark brown color mixed with loam and some sand; at 2^ ^ p.m. passed a rock on the margin of the river consisting of blue slate, which we shall probably find time to examine on our way down; more of the same is to be seen higher up. About a league from the river a little above the slate quarry is a considerable plane called * prairie de Cham-pignole,' often frequented by Buffalo; some salt licks are to be found near it, and in many situations on both sides of this river at small distances from it, we are informed that Salines or salt-licks exist which may be rendered very productive; when this river comes to be settled, so necessary an article as marine salt will therefore be in sufficient abundance for the consumption of a full population. We are greatly impeded today by rapids and were unable to get ourselves landed in a situation favorable enough to make an observation

[ 8°]

1804 I servation for the Latitude before it was too late.

December j ^^ encamped just below some rapids which we are to encounter in the morning, upon excellent level and rich land, being almost entirely an Oak forest; it is not improbable that this land is sometimes subject to inundation, having the appearance of alluvial Land which has acquired permanency & stability, it is now at least 20 feet above the level of the river water. Thermf at 8*" p.m. 38° Extremes 30°-59!

Monday 3^ Therm! in air 38°—in river water 48°—clear — calm — river fallen 8 inches. Continued our voyage with favorable water until breakfast, after which we encountered a great many very bad rapids during the remainder of the day; some were so difficult, that it was impossible to ascend without sending the greatest part of our people ashore with a good rope, & sometimes they were obliged to walk in the water; the exertions of the Soldiers on some very difficult and trying occasions were equal to every thing which could be expected, and exceeded greatly my expectations: at noon we had a good observation about 4 miles below the * Chutes' (falls) Latitude deduced 34° 21' 25".5 we were now anxious to see the famous Chutes, which it was supposed at the Post, we should never be able to pass with so large a boat. The land on either hand continues to improve in quality; there appears to be in


general a superficial stratum of good earth of a ri8o4 dark brown color, upon which vegetation is suf- I December ficiently luxuriant; hills frequently arose out of the level country, full of rocks & stones, generally of an extremely hard flinty kind, often resembling the Turkey oil stone, of this kind was a promontory which came in from the right hand, a little before we arrived at the Chutes: this promontory presented some appearance at a distance, of the ancient ruined fortifications & Castles so frequent in Europe, the effect was greatly heightened by a flock of swans which had taken their stations under the Walls which rose out of the Water; as we approached the Birds floated about magestically upon the glassy surface, and in tremulous melancholy accents seemed to consult each other upon measures of safety, the ensemble produced a truly sublime picture: several masses of the same hard rock insulated by the river conveyed the idea of redoubts and out-works; we expect to visit this place in our descent. A little after 4'' p.m. we arrived at the Chutes. We found these falls to be occasioned by a chain of rocks of the same hard nature with those we had just seen below, here they extended quite across the river, the water making its way over the chain thro' a number of breaches, which by the impetuosity of the torrent had been worn out of the rock: this chain seemed to proceed from a lofty rocky


i8o4 1 hill on the left side the appearance of which con-December j yeyed the idea, of its having been cut down by the abrasion of the waters to its present level: the various breaches thro' which the water poured, were so many cascades, thro' one of which it was necessary to pass; otherwise the Barge must remain below the Chutes: it was quite uncertain which of the Cataracts ought to be preferred; it was also doubtful whether our barge (9 feet wide) could find sufficient breadth & depth of water clear of pointed rocks to pass over the Chutes. We came up to the rocks & stoped between two of the Cascades, & sent a couple of Men with a small Canoe, who crept along shore & got above the Falls, they made fast a rope to a tree, and letting themselves gradually down by the same rope, came on board in great safety; having now got a number of hands ready to haul in upon the rope, we employed the remainder with poles to give a proper position to the Barge & to guide her into the best passage; we accordingly entered one of the Cascades, but after many fruitless attempts we found there was a deffi-ciency of water; with some pointed rocks which opposed our passage; we therefore dropped down a little way, and moved laterally by poling to a second Cataract much more considerable than the one we had just attempted: the rolling impetuosity of the water is not easy to describe, above and below the fall there was a rapid descent,


but just at the fall there seemed to be a step of ri8o4 nearly one foot perpendicular; difficult & dan- [December gerous as this place appeared for a frail bark like ours, we were determined to make the attempt & we lost no time in entering the strait, in which our Barge soon stuck fast at the bows, we then concluded it would be impossible to pass; it seemed that an inch or two were just wanting to our success; we however continued our efforts by moving from side to side by the stern, while great effi^rts were making upon the rope; we perceived a small advancement by every new exertion, our hopes revived, the Barge was in this manner forced half way thro' the Cascade, & now she seemed so completely wedged into the narrow passage, that every effort to stir her in any direction proved ineffectual; the water tho' extremely rapid was not deep & we got four of our boldest men into the water at her bows, as far as possible from the suction of the fall, who by feeling for rocks on which she rested, & raising her sides with all their might, enabled us to advance a step or two farther, beyond which it seemed impossible to move: it was now night, the stars were visible, the water was cold, and altho' the weather was not freezing, it was far from being mild, the therms being at 45°; we now repented that we had made the attempt to pass so late in the evening, & wished we had delayed until the morning; at the same time the


i8o4 1 river was falling, & it seemed not proper to defer ecem erj ^^^ attempt, lest we should not get above the Chutes until another swell of the river: in this situation we determined to lighten the Barge, by sending all the men, except four, ashore to haul upon the rope, while the 4 who remained were with hand levers to endeavour to raise up & lighten the bows of the vessel: the first man who went out discovered, that by the violence of our exertions the rope was beginning to give way & that one of the three strands of which the rope was composed, had actually parted; we were now in a perilous situation, for if the rope had separated, no force on board could have prevented our being dashed to pieces upon the rocks: we immediately ordered every man on board to his pole to support the boat; in the mean time a man was dispatched thro' the water with the end of a rope from on board, which being made fast to the same tree, we were again placed in a state of security; we now sent the other men on shore as had been intended, who gaining a firm footing and exerting themselves with great vigor soon extricated us and drew us safely ashore, greatly rejoicing to find ourselves without accident above the * Chutes': we are encamped under the incessant roar of the cataracts, which resembles nothing so much that I have heretofore witnessed, as the horrid din of a hurricane at New Orleans in the year 1779: the course of the chain of


rocks across the river is nearly S.W. and N.E. [1804 —Made this day 7 miles 218 perches—Therm' t^^^^' at 8^ p.m. 44° — Extremes 3 8''-59°

Thermomi: in air 36° in river water 48° — Tuesday 4''' clear—calm — river fallen 2 inches. Immediately above the Chutes, the water possesses little or no Current, owing no doubt to its depth & breadth & we went on without opposition untill after breakfast; about 8^ a.m. passed a ledge of very hard freestone rocks with moderate current: this reach is spacious being not less than 200 yards wide & is terminated by a high rocky hill (about 350 feet perpendicular) crowned with beautiful pine woods, a fine situation for building: at 10^ ^ passed a bald hill on the left being chiefly uncovered rock, and arrived at the foot of a most tremenduous rapid full of breakers, the passage being studded with pointed rocks of all magnitudes, which raising their rough heads above water, seemed to threaten with destruction the unwary voyager who should presume to attempt their passage; this place appeared to me much more difficult and dangerous than the Chutes, the water descended along a plane of considerable inclination with a most impetuous velocity, the spray & white foam dashing over the rocks, occasioned a very perceptible mist or vapor which spread about at a small elevation, it is probable it might ascend into the atmosphere

i8o4 \ phere at a higher temperature. We stopped to December J contemplate this embarrasment & ordered out a rope, which was carried along shore by a certain part of the people, the rest using their poles on board; we made many fruitless essays to pass upwards by several openings near the shore; at length we attempted the center of the Cataract where the current was the most violent, but the water deeper, & by very great exertions we got over into moderate water, having consumed i j^ hour in making about }4 mile; 300 yards of this distance is difficult & perilous, the greatest prudence with unceasing exertion being indis-pensibly necessary to the safety of such a barge as ours. We landed above this rapid & by a good observation found the latitude to be 34° 25' 48"; on our right stood a high rocky hill crowned with very handsome Pine-woods; the strata of this rock were inclined 30° to the Horizon in the direction of the river descending; this hill may be from 300 to 350 feet high: we have now frequently the hills touching the river on both sides; a border or list of green Cane skirts the margin of the river, growing out of the alluvial soil, beyond is generally a high & sometimes barren hill. At 2^ p.m. we passed a hill on the left containing a great body of blue slate, in some places hanging over the river; a little farther came to another rapid or cataract, which appeared if possible more terrible than


the last, the descent of the water was extremely [1804 precipitate; from the very irregularly undulat- [December ing surface, it was evident that the bottom was composed of innumerable fragments of rock, many of which just shewed their heads out of water; we halted on the right shore & sent up our rope, but after many fruitless & some dangerous attempts, in which we were always repelled by the rocks, we were obliged to give up the expectation of passing up on that shore; we therefore had recourse to the expedient of swinging the barge into the middle of the river & by the aid of the rudder and the exertions of poling, we with some difficulty got hold on the opposite shore, notwithstanding that the rope was caught under a rock in the middle of the river. We hauled the rope on board and sent it up the shore, and passed up the most violent part of the rapid: we ascended a second rapid of less importance and encamped, our people being almost exhausted with fatigue; on the right is a creek called * bayou de la saline'; about a league up the Creek is a salt-lick, which by digging yields salt water resembling what we have already seen; there is also blue slate near the same situation. This afternoon our hunters shot twice at a Buffalo & wounded him severely, the blood flowing as he run, but he escaped. Our tents were pitched on a stony and gravelly beach, they were completely paved with stones of a


i8o4 1 great variety in kind, color and size. Therm' at December/ gh ^ j^ ^^o—Extremes 36°-5o° Made only 4

miles 164 perches.

Wednesday 5'.'' Therm^ in air 23° in water of the river 47° — very serene — calm — river fallen 2 inches. The morning tho' cold was agreeable, the air being very dry: all night we hear'd the roaring of a Cataract, which we were to encounter this morning; we were presently at the foot of it; the violence of the rapid was about 100 yards in length, & as I sat in the cabin of the barge with my eye lowered to the level of the still water of the reach above the rapid, I found there was a fall of 4^^ feet; we sent our rope a head as usual; but made very little progress for some time, the rope being entangled among sharp rocks which endangered its cutting, the consequence of which might have been fatal to all on board the barge, with the entire destruction of the boat and every thing contained in it; the passage was full of breakers and studded all over with pointed rocks, so that it was necessary to guide with the utmost care, to be able to pass clear of those unfriendly obstacles: the men on shore exerted themselves greatly, but were frequently obliged to rest, & the boat was often at an entire stand, at length the rope escaped from the rock which bent it out of its course, and we began to move up very slowly,


frequent rests were necessary & in about an hour ri8o4 and a half we ascended above the rapid which l December was only about 150 yards in length; a small island here divided the river into two channels, we took the shortest tho' the most rapid, because it was most favorable for the use of the rope: The french hunters have denominated this place * La Cascade' on account of the rapidity & great fall of the water within so small a space: below the Cascade, we had rocky hills on both sides, the quality very hard freestone, but that found in the bed of the river which was rolled down by the floods from the upper countries, was very frequently of the hardest flint, sometimes resembling the Turkey stone. Being embarrassed upon the rapids we could not land to observe at noon. We were obliged to use the rope a second time to ascend a very impetuous rapid, altho' much inferior to that of the morning: at i^ 45' p.m. passed a creek on the right called * fourche au Tigre' (Tiger creek) 4 computed leagues from the Chutes; it would seem that the Early Hunters have calculated their leagues by the time required to ascend the stream, & not by distance, as it appears from our calculation, that the distances passed over are frequently not above half those by computation: we now carry the rocky hills with us very often on both sides; rich bottoms nevertheless are not infrequent, & the upland is sometimes of moderate elevation

i8o4 1 tion & toUerably level: we are informed that up Decemberj ^j^g fourche au Tigre, & other Creeks there are many extensive tracts of rich level land. The stones and rocks we now meet with are chiefly penetrated along their fissures by sparry and chrystaline matter. Last night a band of Wolves howled in our neighbourhood a great part of the night. Turkeys become now much more abundant & less difficult of approach than below, our hunters generally kill some every day. The opposition on the river was to day so great, that we made only 3 miles 128 perches, altho' by the old computation our days voyage was little short of 3 leagues. Therm' at 8^ p.m. 38° Extremes 23°—56°

Thursday 6*> Therm' in air 45° in river water 48°—cloudy —light wind at S.W. river fallen 2 inches. We were encamped last night upon excellent land, tollerably level, and of a good dark brown or blackish soil at the surface, about 12 inches deep, lying upon a yellowish loam; the growth of timber is large and handsome, chiefly a forest of Oak with an admixture of ash, hickory, elm &c, a field of corn has been formerly cultivated here by one of the hunters during the summer recess from hunting. This morning the Weather being cloudy we apprehended rain, but hoped to reach the * fourche of Calfat' (Caulker's creek) the point which is to terminate our navigation,


& encamp before bad weather; we according- ri8o4 ly proceeded on without material interruption [December until the hour of breakfast, carrying with us high hills on the left and good level lands on the right, subject perhaps to be inundated: at 9^ a.m. arrived at the foot of a very long precipitous rapid, it seemed to be divided into four steps, one of which was at least 15 inches perpendicular exclusive of the inclined plane above and below, the whole could not be less than 5^ feet perpendicular from the beginning to the end, which was about 400 yards, altho' the swift water continued half a mile: the rope was carried along the bank as usual, and many stops were made upon the rocks before coming ' to the great fall; at last the barge entered between two high rocks, the men exerted themselves vigorously both on shore and aboard; the barge appeared to be ascending an inclined plane of 12 or 15 degrees; great exertions were necessary, she however passed without touching any other obstacle but the impetuous torrent and in a few seconds was drawn into moderate water to the infinite joy of the whole party; upon another part of the rapid higher up, we got upon a rock, which seemed to serve as a pivot, upon which the boat turned as a Center; after reiterated exertions, we could neither advance nor retreat, we therefore unloaded about one quarter of the cargo which enabled her to pass


i8o4 I up without difficulty: we immediately re-loaded Decembcrj having spent three hours in getting over this rapid, and proceeded a quarter of a mile farther to Ellis' Camp a little below the * fourche au Calfat' (Caulker's creek): Here terminates our voyage upon the river upwards, for the present. Our pilot considers this the most convenient landing, from whence to transport by land our necessary baggage to the hot-springs, the distance being about three leagues. There is a creek about 2 leagues higher up, called * bayou des sources chaudes' (hot-spring Creek) upon the banks of which the hot springs are situated, about 2 leagues only from its mouth, but the road is very hilly and therefore less eligible than the path from this camp or landing, which is almost a level road. Upon ascending the hill to encamp we found the land extremely level and very good, with some plants in flower & a great many evergreen vines; the forest is chiefly oak with an admixture of other timber as before mentioned: soon after we arrived it began to rain, we were however tented before it commenced. Therm' at 8^" p.m. 56? Extremes 54°-67? Our short voyage this day was only 2 miles 32 perches.

Friday f^ Thcrmf before san-rise 38° in river water 47° Cloudy — Wind N.W. river risen 4 inches. In the morning Doctor Hunter with the Pilot &c


went to view a salt-lick about a mile to the [1804 West of our camp but found no salt water; the 1 December clay was extremely stiff and difficult to dig: after breakfast dispatched the Pilot with the greatest part of our people with their own baggage & some provisions to encamp at the hot-springs, hoping to find Cabins there sufficient to hut our party with orders to return early next morning so as to take out a load of more baggage and instruments. Took the sun's meridian altitude; Latitude deduced 34° 27' 31'.5 — Therm! at 3^ p.m. 50° — the weather cleared up about g^ p.m. and became very serene and cool with wind at N.W. some venison and turkey were procured by the hunters: altho' we have frequently seen the tracks and other marks of buffalo, we are hitherto disappointed in killing any of them.

Therm! in air 10° in river water 43° —very Saturday 8!ll serene—light wind at N.W. river risen 4 inches. We found the weather this morning extremely cold, the therm' having fallen lower, than we expected in this latitude, particularly at the present early period of the winter season; it is perhaps to be ascribed to the elevation of the country and neighbourhood of mountains: as we have no barometer with us to indicate the pressure of the atmosphere, we shall when we get to the hot springs, ascertain the degree of


i8o4 ] the thermometer at which water boils, from Dccemberj ^hjch scientific men may draw their own conclusions respecting the elevation of the land.

At lo^ a.m. our people returned from the hot-springs, each giving his own account of the wonderfril things he had seen: they were unable to keep the finger a moment in the Water as it issued from the rock, they drank of it after cooling a little and found it very agreeable; some of them thinking that it tasted like Spice-wood tea. The people after refreshment were dispatched with another load of necessary baggage.

Took the Sun's meridian altitude again to day & found the latitude to be 34° 27' 27" being 4" less than yesterday; should no more observations for the Latitude be made here, we may consider it as fixed at 34*^ 27' 29". The Thermf at 3^ p.m. 47° We may prepare for another cold night: a flock of swans passed us to day: we have had an abundance of venison & turkey since we landed here, sufficient to supply the whole party with fresh provisions. The bank or hill upon which we are encamped is at least 50 feet perpendicular above the present level of the river, and therefore I presume 30 feet clear of inundation. Some hills of considerable height are in view, clothed with pine trees, but the lands around us extending far beyond our view, lie very handsomely for cultivation; the superstratum

Stratum is of blackish brown color from 8 to 12 [1804 inches deep, lying upon a yellowish basis, the \ December whole intermixed more or less with stone & gravel & fragments of blue schistus, which is frequently found so far decomposed as to have a strong aluminous taste. The therm!; at 8^ p.m. 26°; very serene and calm, the stars shone with uncommon lustre: in an hour more the face of the heavens was changed, a general cloud produced an intense darkness; the therm! rose to 36? and we expected snow or rain; after midnight notwithstanding, the clouds were dissipated, the face of heaven recovered its brightness & the Stars shone with undiminished splendor. Extremes of the therm! i o°—^y°

Therm! in air 19° in river water 41° very Sunday 9*.'' serene — Wind moderate at N.W. river risen 2 inches. The people returned from the springs between 9*^ & 10^ a.m. and after some time given for repose and refreshment, the party set out again with such baggage as was immediately wanted, and Doctor Hunter and myself accompanied them; the people complained of the length of the road and weight of the loads, we therefore diminished the latter; The Sergeant and one private remained in care of the Barge and her stores. We left the river camp about noon and with many delays and haults for resting we arrived at the hot springs at 4^ ^ p.m.—


i8o4 1 the distance is computed to be 9 miles, which Decemberj ^^ shall verify by actual measurement, probably on our return: the first six miles were in a general westerly direction with many sinuosities and the last three northerly, which courses were necessary to avoid crossing some very steep hills. We found on the way three principal salt-licks & some inferior, which are all frequented by buffalo, deer &c the soil around consisted of a white tenacious clay, probably fit for Potter's ware; hence the name * Glaise' which the french hunters have bestowed upon most of the licks which are frequented by the beasts of the forest, altho' salt is not always to be found in such places so as to merit attention: we saw on the way recent tracts of the Buffalo and several Deer skipped along before us; we did not follow the game, being desireous of arriving at our destination before evening. The people were much fatigued with this days labor, altho' the road is by no means bad or hilly, but there is no doubt that a heavy load constantly bearing a man down must be very fatiguing upon the best of roads: the time and difficulties of moving our small baggage and provisions, altho' nothing but what is essentially necessary, to so small a distance, naturally sugests the inconveniencies which must arise in transporting over unknown mountains between the sources of the red and Arcansa rivers, baggage & provisions indispensibly necessary,

cessary, with tools and implements for the con- ri8o4 struction of a boat or boats to descend the 2*^ [December river. Soldiers accustomed to carry moderate loads only, would find it intoUerable to transport burthens which would be thought light by a Canadian or other woodsman enured to such hardships: a little calculation will shew what ideas we ought to form upon this subject. The provisions, instruments, arms & other baggage which may be deemed indispensible for 15 persons engaged on such an expedition, i. e. what must be transported from the head of one river to the commencement of navigation on the other, are certainly not over-rated at 3000 lib; of the whole party 10 carriers are the highest number we can calculate upon, some being necessary to guard the two camps while the scientific persons unattended would explore the environs: those i o carriers from what we have seen could not be expected to carry for a number of days successively more than 50 pounds each (several of our people were incapable of doing so much) and ten miles to go loaded & return empty day after day even on a tollerably level road, is perhaps beyond what we can flatter ourselves with accomplishing; thus it would require at least six days to transport the baggage 10 miles, and the seventh would be demanded as a day of repose: now if the heads of navigation should be only 50 miles apart, & the passage not


. [ 98 ]

i8o4 \ rugged or mountainous, it would require at the December J j^^g^ ^^ ^j^yg ^.q p^gg along the unknown region;

and if allowance be made for such difficulties as ought to be expected including bad weather, we shall perhaps still flatter ourselves, if we expect to complete this portage in 50 days: on due consideration therefore it may be more advantageous (if the expedition is to be carried on by soldiers who cannot travel without their rations, tents, baggage & above all their execrable whisky) to explore one river only at a time. When arrived at the head of Navigation which will constitute a kind of head quarters and point of departure, the scientific men with a sufficient party may make with tollerable convenience excursions of 30, 40 or 50 miles in all directions, prolonging the time according to the fortune of procuring game, which will enable the party to reserve the provisions taken from Camp for their return: an advantage resulting from this plan would be the facility of transporting specimens of natural history meriting attention; it is evident that this benefit must, upon the other plan, be nearly given up excepting on the descent of the second river. I am not ignorant that the plan originally proposed may be carried into efl^ect, but this must be done by persons chosen for the object, in order that it may be done with economy & in a reasonable time: Two young men of science of robust constitutions attended by four Canadian

or other woodsmen inured to fatigue and who ri8o4 can depend altogether on their guns for subsist- I December ence may accomplish this object; they will be able to transport at once, their blankets, their arms and amunition, a little parched meal, very light instruments, such as a 3 inch sextant which may be graduated to 20" of a degree, a pocket case with a few re-agents for mineralogical assays, and 3 or 4 days provisions in case of disappointment in finding game; (spirituous liquors must be out of the question:) Such a party, each carrying a light ax for the purpose of building Canoes &c may accomplish the object proposed, upon supposition that no hostility is to be apprehended from the natives.

From the river camp for about two miles, the lands are level and of second rate quality, the timber chiefly oak intermixed with others common to the climate and a few scattering pine-trees; further on, the lands on either hand arose into gently swelling hills, clothed chiefly with handsome pine-woods: the road passed along a valley frequently wet, by numerous rills and springs of excellent water which broke from the foot of the hills: as we approached the hot-springs the hills became more elevated and of steep ascent & generally rocky; those hills are here dignified by the name of mountains, altho' none of those yet in view exceed 4 or 500 feet; it is said that mountains of more than five times


1804 1 the elevation of these hills are to be seen in the December j North-west towards the sources of the Washita river; one of those has been called the glass, Chrystal or Shining mountain, on its surface is to be found vast numbers of large hexagonal prisms of very transparent colorless chrystal, generally surmounted by pyramids at one end, rarely at both; they do not produce a double refraction: many searches have been made over those mountains for the precious mettals, but hitherto without success, so far as I can learn.

We found at the Hot-springs an Open Log-Cabin and a few huts of split boards, all calculated for summer encampment, & which have been erected by persons resorting to the Springs for the recovery of their health; we shall endeavour to render our temporary lodging comfortable for the people and ourselves during the short time we expect to stay here: we are a little discouraged by the dilatory ways of the Soldiers; it is evident that to promote the advancement of an object similar to ours, they ought to be commanded by a commissioned officer, whose manners and disposition would render him an agreeable companion to his fellow laborers: it cannot be said that the Soldiers are disobedient, on the contrary they are to me uniformly respectful, but it sometimes appears that a spur is wanting, & there is no person here who treats them otherwise than with civility;


[ 'o> J

there is also some appearance of design to pro- J1804 long their return to new-orleans, the present 1 December service being much more agreeable to them than the duty of a garrison under the eye of their officer.

On our arrival w^e immediately tasted of the hot-spring water, that is, after a few minutes cooling, for it was impossible to approach it with the lips when first taken up, without scalding: having arrived here without prejudice for or against the springs I did not discover any other taste except that of very good water rendered hot by culinary fire; some of our people pretended to have discovered cathartic properties, which must be feeble, as I have been unable to detect the existence of such a quality in the waters. Therm'at 8^ p.m. 28° Extremes 19^-42?

Therm' 26°—very serene. Wind moderate at Monday io'> N.W. — We spent a cold night in our new lodgings, not being able to keep up a large fire in the Cabin, which is only 12 feet square without a chimney. From the complaints of great fatigue by the people, we found it necessary to allow some repose, and ordered the people to go into the river camp, there to remain during the night and return the day following with more of our baggage, directing the loads to be made still lighter: the day proved serene and fine, but as we had been obliged to leave our instruments

i8o4 1 struments yesterday at the river-camp, no astro-Decemberj nomical observations could be made this day. We visited all the hot springs; they issue from the sides and foot of a hill placed on the east side of the narrov^ valley where we are hutted, one small spring only rises out of the face of the west bank of the creek; from the quantity of calcareous matter deposited by it it does not appear to be of long standing; a natural conduit probably passes under the bed of the creek to supply it. There are four principal springs arising immediately on the east bank of the Creek, one of which may rather be said to spring out of the gravel bed of run; a fifth smaller one is that just mentioned rising on the west side of the creek; a sixth of the same magnitude is the highest or most northerly one rising near the bank of the Creek; those are all the sources which merit the name of springs near to our huts; but there is a considerable one some distance below, & all along the creek at intervals the water oozes out or drips from under the bank into the creek, which during the present cool season is very evident from the condensed vapor which floats along the margin of the Creek, where those drippings are visible & even where none is to be seen; a statement will hereafter be given of the temperatures of the respective springs with the quantity of water delivered and references to their respective positions;


from some slight trials, it appears that the high- [1804 est temperature is about 148° to 150? of Farhe- 1 December neit's thermometer.

In the afternoon we ascended the hill of the hot springs, it is of a conical form terminating at top with a few loose fragments of rocks covering a flat space of twenty five feet diameter: altho' we have said the hill is conical, yet it is not entirely insulated, for it is connected by a very narrow ridge with the neighbouring hills.

The primitive rock of this hill above the base is chiefly Silicious, some part of it being of the hardest flint, others of the nature of freestone extremely compact & solid, and of a great variety of colors; the base of the hill, & indeed for a considerable extent, is composed of blackish blue schistus, which divides into perpendicular laminag like blue slate; The water of the hot springs is therfore delivered from the siliceous rock, but this is generally invisible at the surface, being encrusted by or rather buried in the mass of calcareous matter, perpetually precipitated from the water; iron in small proportion was also deposited in form of a red calx, the colour of which was frequently distinguishable in the lime.

Under the hotest water we observed a lively green appearance, which at first induced us to suppose that copper might be present, but on closer inspection, we found it to be a soft tender


18o4 1 matter, perhaps a feculum deposited by the water;

December J j^ jj^^y. possibly be of the same nature with the green matter found in conduits or even in well buckets under pure water at common temperature, respecting which a dispute arose (I think) between Doctor Priestly and other Philosophers, whether this green mater is a perfect vegetable or only a feculum; the question is perhaps now decided (if we suppose the green matter of the hot springs to be of the same kind) for by reasoning from analogy, no vegetable can be supposed to exist in the temperature of 150°; but we must beware of presuming to set bounds to the powers of Nature: we shall hereafter examine this matter with due attention; we shall only now observe, that this substance seems to be deposited by successive thin laminae.

As we advanced up the calcareous region of the hill, we discovered several patches of rich black earth, which appears to be formed by the decomposition of the calcareous matter: in other situations appeared an incrustation of limestone, i. e. the superficial earth was penetrated, indurated and encrusted by lime with fine laminas or minute fragments of iron ore: we entertained no doubt that the water of the hot springs had here issued formerly from the hill and run over the surface, and that the entire mass of the calcareous rock to the height of one hundred feet perpendicular has been created by the incessant


depositions of the hot springs; in this^igh sit- ri8o4 nation we found a spring whose temperature is 1 December 140°

After passing the calcareous region, we found the primitive hill covered by a forest, whose trees were not of the largest size; they consisted chiefly of Oak, Pine, Cedar, Holly, hawthorn with many others common to the climate, with a great variety of vines, some said to produce black & some yellow grapes, both excellent in their kinds: the soil is extremely rocky, interspersed with gravel, sand & fine black vegetable mold. When we had advanced about 250 feet perpendicular up the hill, we found a change in the soil; it was equally stoney & gravelly as below with a superficial coat of black mold but immediately under the last was found a basis of fat, tenacious, soapy, red clay, inclining to the colour of bright Spanish snuff; it seemed to be very homogeneous with scarcely any admixture of sand and no saline taste, but rather soft and agreeable; the same timber continues but diminishing in size as we ascend the hill, and rocks increasing to the top: We estimate the whole height of the hill to be about 300 feet above the level of the valley where we are hutted. Therm! at 8!" p.m. 28° Extremes 26°-5o°

Thermometer before sun-rise 48° Wind S.E. Tuesday 11"' The weather changed very much in the night;


1804 1 it became much warmer and the heavens were Decemberj overcast with one general cloud; the air was still damp and penetrating, and our mansion pervious to the chilling blast, but we made good fires and comforted ourselves in the expectation of favorable weather to enable us to complete our observations and researches. The People arrived about one o'clock in the afternoon with a few things including the instruments.

At 3^ p.m. the thermometer rose to 59° and in the evening at 8!* fell to 50°, the weather being still disagreeable and cloudy. Some venison was brought in after dinner — The People five in number went back to the river to fetch tools and necessaries, while others were occupied in raising a log-chimney at the end of our Cabin, which we proposed to line with stone as a security against fire. No change in the appearance of the weather at bed-time. Extremes of the therm! 48°-59°

Wednesday 12»> Thermometer before sun-rise 36° The weather has become colder, but still continues overcast, damp and disagreeable, the wind being about north, a few drops of rain fell last evening & during the night. As it still continues cloudy, no astronomical observations could be made, I therefore occupied myself in the forenoon in bringing up and completing my journals, and in the afternoon went to examine all the hot springs with


the thermometer: four principal springs seemed f 1804 only to merit attention; those which yielded the \December greatest quantity of water were of the highest temperature and are in the following order. N° i — 150° N°2 145°—N°3 —136 and N° 4 132° the last in order is the only one on the west side of the creek and I did not perceive any signs of hot water anywhere else on that side of the Creek, I therefore conceived that the spring N? 4 is supplied by a channel under the Creek from the general reservoir in the hill on the East: at the spring N° 3 was a small bason of some little depth, in which was a considerable quantity of the green matter in temperature 134? it had much the appearance of a vegetating body, being detached from the bottom yet connected by something like a stem which rested in Calcareous matter, the body of one of those pseudo-plants was about 4 to 5 inches diameter, the bottom a smooth film of some tenacity & the upper surface divided into ascending fibres of ^ to ^ of an inch long resembling the gills of a fish, formed into a kind of transverse rows; not being then prepared for a more minute investigation, a future examination will be made with the microscope. Should it prove that this is a vegetable production and not an accumulation caused by precipitation, it will be a new proof of the wonderfull powers of nature in the production of animal & vegetable life in temperatures

[ 'o8]

1804 1 peratures which have been hitherto thought suf-December J fjcjent to extinguish the vital principle: Should this green matter prove to be vegetable, I shall confidently expect the discovery of animal life; for no plant I believe upon due research will be found without its animal inhabitant. A little farther on, we came to another small muddy bason, in which a vermes about ^ an inch long, was moving with a serpentine or vermicular motion, the water was found a little warm to the finger: I observed invariably that the green matter forming on stones & leaves covered a stratum of Calcareous Earth, sometimes a little hard & brittle, but at other times soft and imperfect, but whether the lime favors the production of the green matter or vice versa, we probably shall not have time to ascertain. Therm? at 8 p.m. 36° Extremes 36°-5o°

Thursday 13"' Therm? before sunrise 26° Wind north. The weather still continues cloudy, dark and disagreeable; finding no probability of making any astronomical observations this day I determined to make an excursion upon the neighbouring western mountain, and having gained one of its summits about y^ a mile from the Camp, took various courses of Hills & points on the river, & having gone to its extreme summit to the westward about a mile distant, I took courses to the same points in order to ascertain nearly their positions:


We had several fine prospects from this hill, ("1804 which we estimated to be 300 feet higher than \December the valley of the hot Springs where we first ascended, and 400 feet at its western ^extremity; the valley of the Washita river comprehended between the hills on either side, seemed a perfect flat & about 12 miles wide, on all hands we saw the hills, called here mountains rising behind each other: in the direction of north the most distant were supposed to be 50 miles off, & are considered to be those of the arcansa river, the rugged mountains which divide the waters of the arcansa from those of the Washita prevent the Osage Indians from visiting the Washita river, of whose existence they are in general ignorant; were it otherwise, their excursions here, would prevent this place being visited by White persons or even Indians of other tribes, as they make no difliculty of traveling round the mountains which give birth to the Washita by the great prairies, which lie east of the great dividing Ridge, and it is known that those robbers plunder indiscriminately all they can find. In the direction of S.W. we saw at about 50 miles distance, a ridge perfectly level which we supposed to be the high prairies or planes of the red river, so that we had under our Eye an horizon whose diameter was 100 miles, incomplete to the East & N.W. Notwithstanding the late severity of the weather, we found along the ridge a considerable


1804 } siderable number and some variety of plants in Decemberj flQ^gr^ ^ others retaining their verdure. We found indeed the ridge much more temperate than the valley; When we left the valley it was extremely damp, cold and penetrating; upon ascending the ridge, the atmosphere became dry & mild, so that walking thereon was perfectly agreeable: a few of the plants in flower were collected for specimens, but what surprised us much was to find upon this ridge a species of Cabbage, the plants grew with expanded leaves spreading on the ground, of a deep green with a shade of purple, the taste of the cabbage was plainly predominant with an agreeable warmth inclining to the raddish; several tap-roots penetrated into the soil, of a white colour, having the taste of horse raddish, but much milder; a quantity of them were brought to camp & when dressed proved palatable & mild; it is highly improbable that any Cabbage seed has ever been scattered upon this ridge, the hunters ascending this River have always pursued far different objects; we must therefore consider this Cabbage (untill farther elucidation) as indigenous to this sequestered quarter & may be denominated the Cabbage raddish of the Washita. I shall preserve and take with me several living plants in hopes of procuring in due time seeds from which the curious may be furnished. We also found growing here a plant which is now green, called by


[ "I ]

the French *racine rouge* (red root) which is ri8o4 said to be a specific in female obstructions, it has l^^^ccinber also been used combined with the china root to die red, which last probably acts as a mordant: having understood that it has also been used with the bark or root of an aromatic Vine, (which I shewed to M' Bartram at Baton Rouge) for the same purpose of fixing a red die. The top of this ridge is in a manner crowned by rocks of a flinty kind. So very hard as to be improper for gun flints; when applied to that purpose, it very soon digs out cavities in the hammer of the lock. This hard stone is generally white but frequently clouded with red, brown black & some other colours, and no doubt in the hands of a practical mineralogist, would receive a variety of denominations such as agate, jaspar, calcedony, Carne-lian & perhaps some of the adamantine genus. Notwithstanding the abundance of rock, a great deal of excellent black vegetable earth was found along the ridge, and generally an understratum of darkish or greyish brown earth producing oak & Hickory with other woods & a great number of grape vines, said to yield excellent black grapes, there is no doubt that this soil upon the top & sides of these hills is well adapted to reward the labors of an expert Vigneron. Here & there we met with fragments of Iron stone & often where a tree had been overturned by the roots, some schistose stones were brought to view


[ "2]

i8o4 1 which were suffering decomposition by their December J exposure to the atmosphere; in returning we descended the hill obliquely & found for 200 feet perpendicular the same kind of stone, much broken into loose fragments, and slipping under foot frequently endangered our falling, the hill being in many places extremely precipitous: in this position we dug into the side of the hill and found the 2*^ stratum to consist of a reddish Clay somewhat resembling that found near the top of the Conical hill to the East of our Camp, but not so highly coloured nor so argilacious, the proportion of silex being manifestly much greater. We continued to descend and found at ^ of the hill downwards, the rock to alter considerably. & altho' it still continued siliceous, yet it was rather a very hard freestone mixed with fragments of flint which had probably rolled from above, descending still lower we found a blue schistus, in a state tending to decomposition wherever it was exposed to the atmosphere; more interiorly the schistus was hard resembling coarse Slate. Few other argilacious stones presented themselves to view, the siliceous were always predominant; & we often found what had much the appearance of the Turkey oyl-stone. Towards the base of the hill was a considerable expansion of tollerably good land, lying sufficiently level for cultivation and is supposed to be a good soil for wheat. The timber such as above


described with a large proportion of Pine. ri8o4 Thermtrat 8^ p.m. 30° Extremes 26^-40° wind IDecember North.

Therm^ 28° Wind N.E. Cloudy, dark, cold Friday 14'.^ and sleet—This morning has made no improvement upon the weather; rain & sleet fell in the night & the ground is hard frozen. D-*^ Hunter had proposed an excursion into the mountains with a Party this day, but the appearance of the weather forbids it: the bad state of our mansion calling for further repairs in the present severe weather, we employed some of our people in shutting up the cracks and openings between the logs, which will render our dwelling more comfortable; placed some of the flowers collected between hortus-siccus-paper and had the roots of the new Cabbage planted so as to be preserved until our return.

The day continues to drip a little from time to time, being still dark, damp and disagreeably cold. Therm^"" at 8^ p.m. 32° Extremes 28°-40° We have news from the Sergeant that the river has fallen 5 feet.

Therm'f 26° Wind N.W. strong. The morn- Saturday 15'!' ing was cloudy, but less dark and disagreeable than the day before. The air became drier and the clouds were dissipating by 9 & 10 o'clock; prepared for a meridian observation; the wind



1804 1 blew very strong down the valley, we are here December J pj^ced as in a point of convergence; for whether the wind blows directly or obliquely into the valley from above or below, it is reflected from the faces of the hills on one hand & by three lesser vallies on the other so as to have its force directed against this point as a Center; there will therefore be a breeze here when there is none upon the adjoining hills, perhaps the rarefaction produced by the hot Springs may also contribute in some measure at this season. At noon had an observation altho' much disturbed by the frequent recurrence of violent blasts of wind which greatly agitated the mercury of the artificial horizon; it appears that the Lat. here will be about 34° 31', but as I intend to make a short series of observations with the face of the Instrument both East & west, the final result will then appear. Therm*? at 3^ p.m. 32° at S^ p.m. 30°

Sunday le^i^ Thermf 21° Wind moderate N W this morning is cold but promises fine weather, the wind nevertheless arose at 9 o'clock & continued to blow strong all day. Prepared for astronomical observations. Took corresponding equal altitudes of the Sun with corresponding azimuths before & afternoon, with the help of a common circumferenter, by which it appears that the magnetic variation is 8° 20' East; this being


[ "5 ]

about the expected variation, we may conclude, ri8o4 that the needle is not here influenced by any "^ ^^^"^ ^^ local attraction Took also equal altitudes for the regulation of the watch before & afternoon. Took also the Suns mer. alt. with the face of the Instrument reversed, and in the Evening between lo & II o'clock, the ThermV being at 22° perfectly serene & calm, took 9 lunar distances between the moon's east limb & a Arie-tis; the evening was perfectly agreeable & not sensibly cold altho' the Therm'f was so low; I conclude these observations to have been made with great accuracy from the advantages of the circumstances, the Circle was mounted on its pedestral very firmly, the Star towards the west & the moon over head so that when both were brought into the field of view & the Star made to move gently across the limb of the moon by a turn of the foot screw backwards & forwards, or by sliding the foot a little to the right & left so as to discover the true point of contact on the moon's limb, the Star being left a little open, the observer had only to wait with his eye fixed on a permanent steady object untill he was convinced of the contact being perfect; I consider one observation made in this way superior to any number or set of observations made by an instrument supported upon the arms of the most experienced observer; I would therefore recommend to all persons using a Sextant or reflecting


[ "6]

i8o4 1 Circle by land, to adopt a pedestal of support December J ^j^h the three necessary motions; the superiority is so great that he who has accustomed himself to use the one mode cannot reconcile himself to the manifest imperfection of the other; the observation being made the angle is read off without stirring the Instrument, so that every thing is ready fixed to the eye for the next observation; I perceive that when all things are favorable a set of distances may be taken by the difference of i' of a degree precisely between the observations; i. e. by moving the index before making the observation, exactly one minute in advance, so that it may be written down by the assistant before the time of counting Seconds: this will operate as a check also upon the negligences of young assistants, a mistake in minutes of time would thus be easily detected; this mode I shall follow in future, as being easier and more perfect: Therm? at 8^ p.m. 22° Extremes 21°-


Monday 17"^ Therm^f before Sun rise 26° wind moderate N.W. The morning is bright & promises a fine day. Yesterday Doc? Hunter made an excursion into the mountains, & to day he goes again. He discovered nothing of importance hitherto, the only metal of which we have seen any indications has been Iron, the ore of which is scattered about in small fragments upon the hills and in


the water courses. Prepared for observation— ri8o4 took equal altitudes of the Sun before & after- \ December noon to correct the watch, which compared with the result of yesterday's equal altitudes will give the rate of the watch's going, by which the true time of the Lunar observations will be precisely ascertained: took the Sun's meridian altitude with the face of the Instrument again reversed: prepared to observe the distance of the moon from Aldebaran, expecting fine observations from so bright a Star, but we were disappointed, the evening become hazy, the Stars frequently obscured, and a large halo with a broad white brim appeared around the moon. The night became cloudy & some drops of rain or sleet fell, appearance of bad weather for to morrow ThermV at 8!" p.m. 28° Extremes 26°-42°

ThermV 34° wind north. Cold, damp, dis-Tuesday 18''' agreeable. The appearance of the weather prevents D"'Hunter from making another excursion to day, some rain fell in the night, but the aspect of this morning bespeaks snow or sleet. Having no better occupation in the present state of the weather, I brought up my journals and began to form a list of all the vegetables I had seen here and in the neighbourhood upon the River which will be inserted in this journal when made a little more complete; The day continues dark, cloudy & rainy: in the afternoon it began to


[ "8 ]

i8o4 1 hail & in the evening it snowed pretty fast; December J ^\^q^^ ^h ^^^^ j^ ^^g ^ inches thick; Thermf

at the same hour 32° Extremes 32°—36-

This evening Doc? Hunter w^as very much indisposed but was relieved before bed time.

Wednesday 19!^ Therm? 30° wind in the valley West, but changeable; This morning we have a full prospect of a northern winter, the ground is covered 4 inches deep with snow and it continues from time to time to fall, tho' not remarkably fast, the eves of our Cabin hang with beautiful icicles, which we have the pleasure of admiring thro' the logs as we sit by the fire side: out-door business being out of the question, I continue to augment my list of vegetables from memory & with the help of the pilot, who proves to be tolerably intelligent. The Doctor has been unable to discover any thing in the water of the hot springs except some weak acid which is probably carbonic; the water has been from this cause a little hard & therefore not so proper for washing, as the soap is decomposed in some measure: the same state of the weather continues, the therm? at 3^? p.m. being at 30° and at S^ p.m. 28? at bed time the weather still continues dark and threatening more snow.

Thursday 20"" Therm' 30° wind in the valley west. There appears over head driving light clouds from the


[ "9]

N.W. The snow still continues lying on the f 1804 ground, the night was very cold, but has greatly L December softened towards morning, from appearances we expect a thaw, it becomes a little clearer. The D?5 and myself both a little indisposed probably from cold & wet feet and the inclemency of the weather; after breakfast, some hopes of the clouds dissipating. The Sun has shewn himself thro' the veil of clouds for a. moment. Prepare for observation but disappointed the heavens are again completely veiled in clouds and a thaw comes on, the Thermtr being at 36? at 3^ p.m. Engaged writing great part of the day. Examined some water of one of the hot springs, which stood a little stagnated on one side, its temperature 132° found no living animal in it, by the aid of an excellent microscope examined also some of the green matter and the white coagulum lying under it which I shall further prosecute with day light, being unable yet to determine whether the green matter is vegetable or merely a feculum. Therm- at i o^ p.m. 32° The weather continues cloudy & the snow lies upon the ground the thaw having stopped.

Therm*', 32° Wind N. No favorable change Friday 21" as yet in the weather; cloudy, damp, dark & cold, the snow still lies upon the ground, so that the D-"^ is unable to undertake another more considerable excursion as he intended. We were

i8o4 1 ini hopes also of making another set of astro-December j nomical observations for the Long, of this place, but as the time is now much advanced we shall be desirous of getting away as soon as the weather permits the transport of our baggage: — in the meantime the Doctor is desireous of making another excursion while we are preparing to move: observed a spot of ground on the same side of the creek with the hot Springs, covered with herbage which had not lost but partially its verdure; upon this spot no snow lay, it appeared to thaw as soon as it fell, altho' on other places even very near some of the hot springs the snow remained undissolved; as soon as the weather permits I shall examine this ground and ascertain the temperature which resists the rigours of winter: what a fine situation for a green or hot house, where at a small expence all the tropical fruits may be propagated. Therm^f at 3*? p.m. 36° it has rained a little we were in hopes of seeing the snow carried away, that it might afterwards become dry under foot: yesterday our pilot & some of the people went out a hunting & fell in with some buffalo; two of them were shot at and grievously wounded, the blood streaming from their sides as this happened in the evening they were unable to follow the chase, but returned to the pursuit this morning, they discovered the tracks and blood which they followed great part of the day without coming

[ '2' ]

ing up with the buffalo & were obliged to re- J1804 turn without success; it appears that the great I December strength of this animal enables him to carry off on many occasions several shots without falling, it is necessary to shoot him thro* the heart to make him fall speedily; we are told that a rifle bullet is by no means certain (if ever so well directed) of penetrating thro' the scull into the brain, or if it does, provided the ball only reaches into the front or fore part of the brain, the animal will not fall; some even assert that the thickness and strength of the scull with the immense quantity of hair which covers the head of the buffalo will resist the penetration of an ordinary rifle bullet. Some venison was brought in so that we are never without fresh provisions. The Turkeys are not plenty in this neighbourhood, keeping near the river. Found a myrtle wax tree covered with its fruit, which must have hung since July or August, the wax is no longer green having changed its colour to a greyish white by being so long exposed to the atmosphere; examined the berries with the microscope; the whole berry is a little oval and less than the smallest garden pea, the nucleus or real seed is as large as a raddish seed covered all over with a number of brownish kidney shaped glands of a brown colour & sweetish taste, those glands secrete the wax, which completely envelopes them & gives the whole the appearance


i8o4 1 at this season of an imperfectly white berry;

Decemberj ^j^jg ^g ^ valuable plant and merits cultivation; its favorite position is a dry soil rather poor & looking dow^n upon the water, it is excellently adapted to ornament the Margins of Canals, lakes or rivulets; the Capina Yapon is equally beautiful & proper for the same purpose. It grows here along the banks of this stoney Creek intermingled with the myrtle, and bears a beautiful little red berry very much resembling the red Currant. Thermal at S^ p.m. 31°

Saturday 22".? Therm^ 31 ° wind N. dark & cloudy, the Snow continues upon the ground, without any prospect of favourable change; after breakfast it began to rain, the water the rain froze as it fell upon the branches of the trees, many limbs broke down around us in consequence of the weight of the Ice adhering to them; we are still confined within doors by the inclemency of the weather which greatly retards us, so that we cannot even prosecute our intended researches respecting the hot springs. Engaged writing great part of the day; we had i o quarts of the hot spring water evaporated which produced about 10 grains of matter, of which the chief part appeared to be carbonated lime with some feculum, the greater part disolved with effervescence in the muriatic acid. The Therms at 3*? p. m. 36° The day continues unfavorable & keeps dropping rain


from time to time, yet the snow does not melt: j'1804 The temperature of the hot springs remains the \ December same as in the former trial & the temperature of boiling water was ascertained to be 212° hence it appears that this place is not elevated so as sensibly to alter the pressure of the atmosphere, otherwise water would boil at a smaller temperature. Caused a number of the grape vines to be dug up ready to carry along with us. The Doctor goes on with some more experiments upon the Spring water, the results will be hereafter given. Therm*;^ at 8^ p.m. 34° Snow falls again this Evening — no prospect of a change.

Therm*;' before sunrise 30°. Wind N.W. by Sunday 23"* the clouds, blows down the valley reflected from the side of the hill N.N.E; this morning some appearance of a change. The clouds (scudding from the N.W.) begin to dissipate, the blue celestial Sky appears in several parts of the heavens. The snow still lies partially on the ground — but we hope it will soon disolve as the Sun appears; prepare for taking equal altitudes in which I succeeded so far as to take the triple contact in the morning for the regulation of the watch and also one azimuth with time & altitude for finding the variation of the magnetic needle; prepared for a meridian observation in order to complete my set of 4 observations for the Latitude of this place, but was disappointed


i8o4 1 by the intervention of Clouds; seeing no pros-December] pgj,^. q£ taking correspondent altitudes in the afternoon determined on visiting the hot springs & adjacent places: It requires a length of time to form a good judgement of a new object, such as the curious one now before us, on the first view we see a creek with a margin of rock & the hot springs here and there trickling over or passing thro' them; the Creek seems to be undermining the rock, which frequently cracks, divides and falls into the Creek; upon a closer examination it will be found that the water of the Creek does not undermine the rock, but on the contrary the rock is continually encroaching upon the breadth of the creek; the hot water is perpetually depositing calcareous matter, perhaps some siliceous matter also: the new formed rock by those means is continually augmenting & projecting its cliffs and promontories over the running water, which prevents this formation below its own surface: wherever the calcareous crust is seen spreading over the bank & margin of the Creek, there most certainly the hot water will be found, either passing over the surface or thro' some channel perhaps below the new rock, or dripping from the projecting edges of the over-hanging precipice; the progress of nature in the formation of this new rock is curious & worthy the attention of the mineralogist; when the hot water issues from the fountain it frequently

[ "25 ]

quently spreads over a superficies of some extent; J 1804 so far as it reaches on either hand there is a de- \ December position of dark green matter which may either be a plant or only a feculum, I have not yet been able to pronounce w^hich, several laminae of this green matter will be found lying over each other; immediately under and in contact with the inferior lamina which is not thicker than paper is found a whitish matter resembling a coagulum; when viewed with the microscope, this last is also found to consist of several, sometimes a great number of lamina?, of which that next the green matter is the thinest and finest being the last formed, those below encreasing in thickness & tenacity, until the last terminates on a soft earthy matter, and this last reposing on the more solid rock; each lamina of the coagulum is penetrated in all its parts by calcareous grains which are extremely minute and divided in the more recent web but much larger and occupying the whole of the inferior lamina; I think it probable that the coagulum is silex and no doubt the grains are lime the under stratum is continually consolidating & adding bulk and heigth to the rock; when this acquires a certain elevation the water always seeking the quickest descent will find its way over another part of the rock, hill or margin of the creek & forms accumulations by turns over the whole of the adjacent space; the green matter is also designed by nature


[ «26]

1804 1 for a useful purpose; when the water by seeking Decemberj ^g^ channels has entirely forsaken its former situation, the green matter which acquires sometimes a thickness of half an inch, is speedily converted into a rich vegitable earth & becomes the food of plants, the calcareous surface itself decomposes and forms the richest black mold intimately mixed with a considerable proportion of silex (formed as I have supposed from the coagulum) plants and trees of every kind now vegetate luxuriantly upon this soil; many however thrive upon the rock, where very little earth is to be seen, particularly the cedar which seems to grow from between the clefts of the hard rock. The grape vine also seems to prosper in this unpromising situation. I proceeded to examine the piece of ground (above-mentioned) upon which the snow would not lie: I found it covered in a great measure with herbage, which was in part turned brownish by the season, altho' there was on a part of it a very small fine grass which was green, a calcareous Crust appeared in some places at the surface but in general there was a depth of 5 or 6 inches & in some places a foot of the richest black mold, the surface was manifestly warm to the touch; the ThermV in the air was then at 44? when placed 4 inches under the surface & covered with earth, it rose rapidly to 68° and when placed at 8 inches or upon the calcareous rock and covered up it rose to 80?


this result was very uniform over the whole f 1804 surface which was about a quarter of an acre: 1 December in searching we found a spring about 15 inches under the surface which raised the ThermH to 130? Under the black mold was found a brown mixture of lime and silex very loose and divisible, which appeared to be advancing in its progress of decomposition towards the formation of black mold, under the brownish mass it gradually became whiter and harder and at the depth of six to 12 inches was nearly hard calcareous stone sparkling with silex: it was evident from every thing we saw around that the water had passed over this place & formed a flat superficies of siliceous limestone, and that its position nearly level had facilitated the accumulation of earth in proportion as the decomposition advanced: Similar spots of earth were found higher up. The hill resembling little Savannahs near which were always found hot springs, which had once flowed over the Savannahs; it seems probable that the hot water of the springs, at an early period had all issued from its grand recer-voir in the hill at a much higher elevation than at present, the Calcareous crust may be traced up in most situations on the west side of the hill looking down upon the Creek & valley to a certain heigth,perhaps 100 feet perpend: from that division the hill above rises precipitously & is studded all over with hard siliceous stones;


[ '28 ]

i8o4 1 below the descent is more gradual, the soil cal-Decembcr J careous black earth, the rock itself very often at the surface, & frequently there is a precipice on the margin of the Creek or a very precipitous descent along the calcarious new formed rock. The Therm? at 3^ p.m. was at 44° and at S^ p.m. 38° Doctor Hunter continues indisposed.

Monday 24.^^ Therm? before Sun rise 32? Wind moderate from N.W. Some prospect this morning of a favorable change, the moon is visible, and the Sun yet behind the hill, announces his approach with a bright blase: prepare for observation — took the suns triple contact, hoping to obtain correspondent observations in the afternoon to regulate the watch. The moon was already eclipsed by the Pine tree tops on the western hill before the sun was risen high enough in the East to enable us to take their distance; We were therefore obliged to wait with patience and ordered all the intervening trees to be cut down to facilitate future observation: at noon obtained a good altitude of the Sun but soon afterwards it became cloudy, so that we got no corresponding altitudes for the regulation of the watch.

The Doctor found himself a little better, we agreed to walk up the hot spring hill to make new observations on this natural curiosity: we


now found it easy to trace out the separation be- f 1804 tween the primitive hill & that which has been t^^^^'"^^'' accumulated upon its west side by precipitation from y' waters of the hot Springs; this last is entirely confined to the west side of the hill washed at its base by the waters of the Creek, no hot spring being visible in any other part of its circumference; by actual measurement along the base of the hill, the influence of the Springs is found to extend 70 perches in a direction a little to the eastward of North; along the whole of this space the Springs have deposited stoney matter, which is probably principally Calcareous, but there is also evidence of Silex and Iron. All the Springs deposit red calx of Iron in their passage to the Creek; the existence of Silex does not appear to me to be so fully decided; there is certainly sparkling chrystals mingled with the lime, particularly remarkable in the calcarious matter partially decomposed, but having observed by the aid of the microscope that the whole of the calcarious rock exhibits nothing but a mass of congregated sparry matter, it is not improbable that those shining chrystals may be chrystalised lime; the Doctor is now employed upon an analysis which will, no doubt, decide the point; from some specimens I shall carry home with me, I shall hope to investigate the matter more at leisure. The accumulation of calcarious matter is much more considerable at the


i8o4 1 north end of the hill than towards the south;

December J ^^le first may be above one hundred feet perpendicular, but sloping much more gradually than the primitive hill above, until it approaches the creek, vv^here not unfrequently it terminates in a precipice of from 6 to 20 feet: the difference between the appearance of the primitive and secondary hill is so striking, that the most superficial observer cannot avoid taking notice of it: the first is regularly very steep studded with rock and stone of the hardest flint and other siliceous compounds all extremely hard, a superficies of two or 3 inches of good mold covers a body of red clay above described: below on the secondary hill, which carries evident marks of recent formation, no flint or siliceous stone is to be seen; the Calcareous rock has concealed all from view, & is itself frequently covered by much fine rich black earth; it would seem that this compound which is precipitated by the hot waters, encloses in its own bosom the seeds of its destruction, for it is remarkable that when the waters have ceased to flow over any portion of the rock, a superficial decomposition will there speedily take place; tho' I am inclined to suspect that heat communicated from the interior of the hill below contributes much to this operation of nature, because it is observable, that insulated masses of the rock remain without change.


[ '3« ]

The Cedar, the Wax-Myrtle and the Cassina ri8o4 Yapon, all beautiful evergreens attach themselves 1 December particularly to the calcareous region, & seem to grow and thrive in the clefts of the solid rock: at small intervals along the line of separation between the primitive and secondary hill, we discover many sources of hot water; some flowing with some degree of freedom, & others in a manner stagnated and shut in by the accumulations of Stoney Concretion extracted by their own operation from the bowels of the hill. Any spring enjoying a freedom of position proceeds with great regularity in depositing its solid contents; the border or rim of its bason forms an elevated ridge, from whence proceeds a glacis all around; when the waters have flowed for some time over one part of the brim, this becomes more elevated &c the water can no longer escape on that side, but is compelled to seek a passage where the resistance is least, thus it proceeds with the greatest regularity forming in miniature a Crater resembling in shape the conical summit of a volcano; the hill being steep above, the progress of petrifaction is stopped on that side, & the waters continue to flow and spread abroad, encrusting the whole face of the hill below. I am persuaded that the accumulations and extent of the calcareous matter would have been vastly greater, perhaps the whole valley might have been filled up with it, did not


i8o4 1 the continual running of the creek water put Decemberj ^ g^^p ^^ j^g progression on that side: the last formed calcareous border of the circular bason, (covered by the green feculum) is soft and easily divided, a little under it is more compact, and at the depth of six inches, it is generally hard white stone; if the bottom of the bason is stirred up, a quantity of red calx of iron arises and escapes over the summit of the crater.

It is surprising to see plants, shrubs and trees with their roots absolutely in the hot water; this circumstance being observed by some of the visitants of the hot springs has induced some of them to try experiments by sticking branches of trees into the run of hot water; we found some branches of the wax-Myrtle thrust into the bottom of a spring-run, the water being at temperature 130° of Farheneit's thermometer, the foliage & fruit of the branch were not only sound and healthy, but at the very surface of the water fresh roots were actually sprouting from the branch; the whole being pulled up for examination, it was found that the part which had penetrated into the hot mud was decayed: this phenomenon is so new & singular, that few persons will at first be disposed to believe, judging that deception or want of accuracy has led us into error; it is however in the power of every curious person who will give himself the necessary trouble to try the experiments himself; in


[ '33 ]

the meantime Doctor Hunter and his son are ri8o4 evidences of the truth of the above statement. [December — A luxuriant vegetation clothes the decomposed surface of the calcareous region, the black rich mold being of a good depth in some few places (6 or more inches) & in others shallower, and the rock in other situations is nearly unchanged, giving nourishment however to a mass of very short moss, which is gradually forming a soil different in appearance from that which is generated from the decomposed lime. The primitive part of the hill is greatly inferior in fertility to the secondary or recent portion, but it is far from being sterile: grape vines abound in both, particularly in the calcareous soil.

It may be proper to pause for a moment and enquire what may be the cause of the perpetual fire which keeps up without change the high temperature of so many springs flowing from this hill at considerable distances from each other. Upon looking around us, no data present themselves sufficient for the solution of the problem; nothing of a volcanic nature is to be seen in this country, neither have we been able to learn that in any part of the hills or mountains connected with this river, there is any evidence in favor of such a supposition. An immense bed of blackish blue schistus appears to form the basis of the hot-spring hill and of all those in its neighbourhood. The bottom or bed of the


[ "34 ]

i8o4 1 creek is composed of scarcely any thing else; I Deccmberj jj^yg frequently taken up pieces of this stone, rendered soft by decomposition and possessing a very strong aluminous taste; it seemed to require nothing but lixiviation and chrystalisation to complete the manufacture of alumn. As all bodies which suffer chemical changes, generally produce an alteration of temperature, it may be enquired whether the decomposing schistus is capable of generating a degree of Caloric corresponding to the temperature of the hot springs. Another cause we shall notice which perhaps will be thought more satisfactory: it is well known that in several positions within the Circle of the waters of this river, vast beds of martial pyrites exist; they have not yet been discovered in the vicinage of the hot springs, but it is extremely probable that they may be accumulated in immense strata under the bases of those hills, and as we have noticed at one place at least some evidence of the existence of bitumen,* we cannot doubt that due proportions of those principles united, will in the progress of decomposition by the admission of air & moisture produce the degrees of heat necessary to support the phenomina of the hot springs. No sulphuric

* Having thrust a stick down into the crater of one of the hot springs some distance up the hill, several drops of petroleum or naphtha rose and spread upon the surface, it ceased to rise after three or four attempts.


[ '35 ]

acid is present in this water; the springs may fi8o4 be supplied by the vapor of heated water ascend- *-ing from the Caverns where the heat is generated; or the heat may be immediately applied to the bottom of an immense natural Caldron of rock contained in the bowels of the hill, from which as a reservoir the Springs may be supplied. Therm^ at 8!^ p.m. 34° Extremes 32°


Therm! 34° Wind N.W. Cloudy—The state Tuesday is'^ of the heavens did not admit of any astronomical observations in the morning; it cleared away before noon, so that we had a good meridian altitude of the Sun, which was scarcely over when the clouds overspread again the face of heaven, & it rained a part of the afternoon: the present being Christmas Day, we indulged the men with a holy-day, for which object they had hoarded up their rations of whisky, to be expended in merriment on this occasion, which terminated with inebriety but no ill consequence ensued. We amused ourselves with farther experiments on the hot waters; the conduct of the analysis being left to Doctor Hunter as a professed Chemist, the results will be hereafter given. Thermom! at 8!" p.m. 44° Extremes 34°


Therm 34°. Wind N.W. clear, prepare for Wednesday 26'!'



i8o4 1 observation. Took the Sun's contacts in the Decemberj morning hoping to get equal altitudes in the afternoon; but as this is not always certain, I make it a rule to note down the Sun's altitude, so that the apparent time may be calculated; and if the corresponding altitudes are taken after noon; the calculation of the correction for change of declination during the interval is greatly facilitated by noting the altitudes. Before instruments were brought to their present state of perfection, the method hitherto in use was to be preferred; but no reason can be assigned why we should not now adopt a mode equally correct, which saves half the labor, and more especially that by using the altitudes, we do not require that the Latitude should be previously known.

This afternoon took the Altitude of the hill west of the camp by measurement of a base and two correct angles of elevation with the circle of reflection, and found it to be 300 feet, which is less than we had supposed: very steep hills are extremely imposing; the ascent of the hill was not much more than double its perpendicular height, i. e. about 700 feet of inclined plane and the angle at its base made by the summit with the horizon above 26° We had no favorable position to ascertain by the same means the height of the hill of the hot springs, but having been on the tops of both distinctiv


[ ^Z7 ]

seen from each other, we judge them to be of ri8o4 equal elevation. \ December

In the morning between lo and 11^ made a set of Lunar observations, by taking twelve distances of the sun and moon's limbs: the moon being advanced within less than 60° of the sun, appeared.with a very faint light in presence of the sun's image altho' darkened considerably, and it required very particular attention to obtain fine contacts, which are supposed to be very correct, altho' the eye remained greatly fatigued. —The afternoon being cloudy prevented taking the correspondent equal altitudes for the regulation of the watch. Therm' at 8!* p.m. 44° Extremes 34°-50?

This morning being fine Doctor Hunter pre- Thursday 27'.^ pared to make his long meditated excursion of 3 or 4 days into the mountains, which the unfavorable state of the weather has hitherto prevented: the thermy stood at 26° before sun rise, and the face of the hill and creek were shrouded in condensed vapor. After breakfast the Doctor set out with our Pilot and three of the people; the rest were dispatched with loads of baggage to the river. Took a set of observations for equal altitudes, but we were again disappointed in obtaining the correspondent afternoon observations by the intervention of clouds; the mornings' altitudes of yesterday and this day will nevertheless


[ '38]

i8o4 \ be sufficient for the regulation of time by the December J ^^tch and obtaining her rate of going. At noon had a very fine altitude of the Sun, which is the seventh observation for the Latitude of this place, and concludes our astronomical observations here, from whence will be deduced (it is hoped) with sufficient precision the Latitude and Longitude of this point of Louisiana, rendered remarkable by the presence of so great a natural curiosity as the Hot-springs. The mean of the seven observations whose respective results were all very near to each other makes the Latitude of the Hot-spring N° 3 to be 34° 30' 59".82. This may be farther corrected by introducing the deviation in north polar distance, occasioned by the nutation of the Earth's axis; this being common to the Sun and to all the Stars ought not to be neglected when great precision is required. The series of observations above mentioned being reduced to the 21^' December as the mean or middle time of the series; it will be found that the Sun's Right ascension was then 9 signs and the place of the moon's ascending node 9 signs 27 degrees; from whence results a correction in the Sun's declination of-4".34 which quantity being additive to the Latitude deduced, gives for the true Latitude 34° 31' 4". 16. The Longitude will be calculated at leisure & will be hereafter noticed.


After the Doctor set out I amused myself f 1804 with pursuing experiments on the analysis of \ December the hot waters &c — Thermometer at 8!* p.m. 38° Extremes 26°-45°

Therm! 34° Wind S.W. — Cloudy — ap-Friday 28'!> pearance of rain or snow — Dispatched six of our people with loads to the river Camp: after breakfast set out upon a geographical tour round the Hill of the hot-springs; young M^ Hunter with one of the people and my negro servant attended: in the course of this survey there was no indication of any hot spring but those of which we have already spoken, all lying on the same side of the hill within a space of 70 perches as has been already noted: Every new inspection of those Curious springs brings forth some addition to the limited knowledge we have acquired of them; we find it now pretty evident that most of the springs if not all have flowed from a more elevated part of the hill than at present; and the perpetual accumulations of Calcareous matter confining the sources have probably elevated them to nearly the level of the grand recervoir within the bowels of the hill; during this process the calcareous rock has been formed which we now see attached to the side of the hill; at length however the issues of the waters have become so obstructed and probably the level of the water in the grand recervoir so elevated,


[ HO ]

1804 1 that by the superincumbent pressure of the December J waters, new passages have been forced in lower situations: it is evident that the springs which now break forth along the margin of the Creek, cannot be supposed to have flowed for a long time (comparatively) in their present situation; the formation of calcareous rock created by the springs in their actual position, resembling only small excrescences growing from the base of considerable precipices, is a proof of what we have advanced: some of those new springs have formed small flats of 20 to 30 feet extent; in general they have formed little elevations of 5 to 6 feet perpendicular, with a glacis of 10 or 15 feet terminated by a precipitate fall into the creek. Those small accumulations when compared with the great mass of rock spreading along the face of the hill to the perpendicular height of one hundred feet, are certainly a demonstrative proof of the recent existence of the inferior springs: an ingenious observer of Nature, by some years attention might determine the quantity of calcareous matter precipitated in a given time from some one spring, which would furnish us with a datum, from whence to form a proximate calculation of the antiquity of the Springs. We have already noticed that some springs still exist even at the very limit which separates the calcareous region from the primitive hill; their temperature is similar to


[ HI ]

those below, they are all feeble and are soon lost f 1804 upon the face of the hill, & perhaps contribute "^ ^""^ ^^ to augment the inferior springs.

We found the circuit of this hill to be about 3 y^ miles, measuring round its base as correctly as the uneven surface would permit: altho' this hill when seen from the hill to the west of the valley appears to represent a handsome conical monticule in an insulated situation, yet our geographical survey discovered to us that it is connected in the rear by a very narrow ridge, with a chain of inferior hills dividing the Creek of the hot-springs from a branch of the Calfat. We find invariably the upper half of the hills to be filled up with the hardest flinty rocks, with an admixture of the hardest freestone; much of both particularly the first have rolled down & are found all the way to the base: At the foot of those hills & at some elevation are found immense strata of schistus, some of a yellowish color, which forms by decomposition an earth of the same color, presenting at first view the appearance of clay, but it is greatly deficient in tenacity: The base of the hills and the vallies contiguous to the hot-spring hill seem chiefly occupied by a bluish black Schistus, altho' there be veins of the siliceous genus crossing this last in several places: there is no doubt that a manufacture of Alumn might be established here upon an immense scale; the schistus under foot is


i8o4 1 frequently found in a state ready to yield alumn, December j ^g appears from the astringent and sweet taste it possesses.

After our return to Camp, I determined to have another microscopic examination of the green matter and hot water before leaving finally this place. I procured some of the green matter of a very beautiful kind, resembling a moss whose fibres were more than half an inch in length; a film of the same green matter was spread upon a calcareous base, & from the film sprung the fibres representing a beautiful vegetation completely immersed in water of 130° temperature; This moss (if it shall be found to be vegetable) was brought to this state of perfection by growing in a small natural bason containing some depth of water in a state of comparative repose, communicating freely with one of the springs, but no current passed thro' it.

This moss sparkled before the microscope with innumerable nodules of lime, some part of which seemed to be beautifully chrystalized, and altho' the fine green color of the moss was visible thro' the lime, yet it was thereby so much concealed, that it was impossible to decide whether it possessed the true organic structure of a vegetable; I incline however now to believe that the green matter is a true vegetable, not only from its great resemblance to some of the mosses particularly the Byssi, but also from the


discovery I have just made that this moss is the [1804 residence of animal life: after frequent search 1 December I at length discovered a very minute shell-fish of the bi-valve kind inhabiting this moss; its shape is nearly that of the fresh vv^ater muscle; the color of the shell is greyish brown with certain spots of a slight purplish appearance; when the animal is undisturbed it opens its shell & thrusts out four legs very transparent, and articulated like those of a quadruped; the extremities of the forelegs are very slender & sharp, but those of the hind legs somewhat broader as if armed with minute toes; from the extremity of each shell, issues 3 or 4 forked hairs, which the animal seems to have the power of moving; the forelegs seem formed for making incisions into the moss for the purpose of procuring access to the juices of the living plant, upon which no doubt it feeds, and I think it highly probable that the animal is provided with a proboscis, tho' I was unable to discover it; the hind legs seem well adapted for propelling the animal in its progress over the moss or thro' the water.

A considerable quantity of snow fell while we were engaged on the survey and after our return. Thermometer at 8^ p.m. 30° Extremes 30°—34° — at 3^ p.m. 32?

Therms 25° Wind at N.W. strong all night, Saturday 29? some flying clouds appear in the morning. — Got


i8o4 1 the people ready with their loads between 9 & December J j ^h ^ j^^ ^^d I set out with them myself for the river camp; it began to snow at 10 o'clock, but did not continue; the weather continued cloudy, but the exercize of walking rendered the temperature (tho' cold) very agreeable; the low grounds thro' which we passed were a little watery, in consequence of the rains which had fallen, but not more so, than when we first walked out to the hot springs; the soil of the flat lands under the stratum of vegetable mould was chiefly yellowish and was evidently decomposed schistus, of which there were immense beds in every stage of its progress from the hard stone recently uncovered, partially decomposed and down to the yellowish earth apparently ho-mogenious. The covering of vegetable mould between the hills and the river is in most places sufficiently thick to constitute a good soil, being from 4 to 6 inches, and it is the opinion of the people upon the Washita that wheat would grow here to great perfection. Altho' the higher hills (300 to 600 feet) are very rocky, yet the inferior hills and sloping bases of the first are generally clothed with a soil of a middling quality, the natural productions are sufficiently luxuriant, consisting chiefly of black and red oak intermixed with a variety of other woods and a considerable undergrowth; and even on those rocky hills, Nature has bestowed a soil which will


reward the future labors of the industrious Vi- ri8o4 gneron: Nature herself unaided by man has al- t December ready planted on them three or four species of Vines, which are said to produce annually an exuberance of excellent grapes. A great variety of plants, some of which in their season, I am informed produce flowers highly ornamental, would probably reward the researches of the Botanist.

On the way into the river I took the courses by compass and the distances by time; when the Doctor comes with the last party I have appointed two good hands to chain the same distances, to be noted down by young M.\ Hunter — At 8^ p.m. the therm! was down at 24°—the wind blew strong all the afternoon, but fell calm by night.

I omitted to observe in its proper place that having observed from the bottom of one of the hot springs a frequent ebulition of gas, we should have collected some for examination, but no apparatus was provided for the purpose, it was so unfortunate that we had not even a funnel at the Springs, which with a bottle might have sufficed: it was not hydrogen, because I failed in several attempts to inflame it by a lighted torch: there can be no doubt of its being Carbonic acid, having always found indications of an excess of a weak acid, by which the lime and iron were disolved in the water. With respect to the quantity

i8o4 1 tity of hot water delivered by the springs I made Decemberj ^j^g following rough estimate. — There are four principal springs, two of inferior note, one rising out of the gravel and a number of drippings and drainings all issuing from the margin or from under the rock which overhangs the creek. Of the four first mentioned, three deliver nearly equal quantities, but one (N? i) the most considerable of all and the hottest delivers about five times as much as one of the other three, the 2 of inferior note may be equal to one, and all the drippings & small springs are probably underrated at double the quantity of one of the three; that is, taking all together, the whole will amount to a quantity equal to eleven times the water delivered by the standard spring, which was the only one commodiously situated for measurement; I neglect the springs up the hill, because it is probable that what is not evaporated unites with the springs below. We found a Kettle containing eleven quarts was filled by the standard Spring in eleven seconds; Hence the whole quantity of hot water delivered by all the springs issuing visibly from the base of the hill may amount in one minute to 165 gallons and in 24 hours to 37713^ Hhds of 63 gallons each, which is equal to a handsome brook and might work an over-shot mill. In cool weather condensed vapor is seen arising out of the gravel bed of the Creek from springs which cannot be taken into


the account; during summer and fall I am in- ri8o4 formed the Creek receives little or no water, but I December what is supplied by the hot-springs, at those seasons probably many small springs may be seen rising out of the bed of the Creek, which are now invisible; during that time the Creek itself is a hot bath, too hot indeed near the springs, so that a person may chuse the temperature most agreeable to himself, by selecting a natural bason nearer to or farther from the principal springs; at 3 or 4 miles below the springs, the water is tepid and unpleasant to drink.

Thermf in air 9° in river water 36° — wind Sunday 30'.^ very light at N.W. This morning & the night past are the coldest we have experienced this winter. The People set off very early to bring in Doctor Hunter's baggage from the springs. Employed myself in bringing up my journals &c — The Doctor arrived with the people about 3!* p.m. — The Sky was most serenely clear this day, its color over head was that of the darkest Prussian blue and during last night the stars shone with uncommon lusture. People have conceived an idea that they see more stars here and at the hot springs than any where else; which idea arises from the extreme transparency of the atmosphere, which causes the stars to strike the eye with greater brightness, and no doubt stars of inferior magnitude will be seen in a


1804 1 pure sky which are invisible in an ordinary one.

December j TJ^ig evening some light clouds appeared about the sun-setting, which is an indication of change of weather; we now anxiously expect rain, as we wait only for the first rise of the river to go down with safety over the falls and rapids; 5 or 6 feet perpendicular will be sufficient. At night the atmosphere became again extremely bright — at 8^ p.m. the therms was at 21° Extremes 9°-38° — It became very cold at lo!" p.m.

Monday 31'.' Therm' in air 29° in river water 36°—Wind S.E. During the night the Weather altered greatly; the temperature was much molified and the stars disappeared; in the morning one general cloud enclosed the horizon, and from the damp penetrating chilliness of the morning we look for snow: ordered setting poles to be made & every thing to be prepared for the first favorable moment to depart. The day continued cloudy, & in the afternoon the therm! having risen to 32° it began to snow and continued all day and part of the night: Examined some of the green moss from the hot-springs, with a view to shew Doctor Hunter one of the Bivalved testaceous animals, found a large one which under the microscope measured V^o of an inch in

length by the micrometer.

1805 1 ^ ^

January >

Tuesday i'.' J This morning the thermometer was at 26° —


[ '49 ]

It had ceased snowing in the night but recom- /1805 menced after day light; the snow was sounded IJ^""^'7 and found in most places to be from 11 to 13 inches; we are in hopes that the melting of this snow united to the rain which will probably accompany the thaw, will be sufficient to take us down in safety; being desireous however of ascertaining what aid we had to expect from the snow, I made the following experiment — I took a Cylindric Kettle i o inches deep & having by sounding found a flat piece of snow of the same depth, I pressed down the Kettle bottom upwards perpendicularly to the ground; I was thus enabled to return the Kettle completely filled with its column of snow, and having thawed it gradually to the temperature of 33° I found the water to measure exactly 1.07 inches, that is, 9.346 inches of snow will yield one inch of water in the circumstances above mentioned; it is observable that the snow fell lightly without wind, it is therefore probable that the proportion of ten to one may be adopted as a general standard to be varied according to circumstances. The snow continued frozen all day, and the therm!! at 3!* p.m. did not fall below the freezing point and in the evening at 8^ p.m. it was fallen to 18°

Thermometer in air 6° in river water 3 2° Wednesday 2^. Calm — The night proved extremely cold;


1805 \ large fires with all the covering that could be January] conveniently used were necessary to render our situation comfortable in a bad tent negligently chosen at New Orleans. The sun arose bright and shone with splendor upon the surface of the snow which covered every object upon the ground; the river alone presented a bleak appearance with a condensed vapor floating upon its surface; the temperature of the river was at the freezing point; a kettle of water being brought up to Camp and placed on the ground four feet from a large fire, its surface began immediately to shoot into icy chrystalizations. — Our hunters are tolerably successful, bringing in every day abundance of Venison and Turkies.— The day became pleasant and agreeable, the temperature at 3^ p.m. being 45° and at 8!" p.m. the thermometer fell to 32°

Thursday 3'! Thermometer in air 22° in river water 34° — wind moderate at N.W. The atmosphere became cloudy in the night and we looked confidently for a change of weather, but this morning it has become serene and fine; the vicissitudes of the weather have of late been frequent, a change is now extremely desireable but the season seems obstinately bent against all change. The day became pleasant and of an agreeable temperature, the thermometer at 3^ p.m. being at 48° and at 8^ in the evening 30°


[ "51 ]

Thermometer in air 22° in river water 36°— fiSos Calm — during the night it became cloudy, not | ^ "J^^'^ ,h a star was to be seen but before morning it cleared away & became perfectly serene and cloudless. The day proved fine, the sky over head of a bright but deep prusian blue, the temperature mild, the thermometer at 3^ p.m. being up to 50° In the afternoon the Doctor made an excursion upon the river to examine some of the neighbouring hills: I continued to bring up and arrange my Journals. The evening was fine, the thermometer at 8^ p.m. was at 32° — no favorable appearance yet of rain to raise the river; the snow is disappearing without producing any beneficial eff^ect: we continue here as prisoners, waiting for what is usually called bad weather, to bear us away from this place.

Thermometer in air 22° in river water 36? Saturday 5*> Wind N.W. The atmosphere became cloudy in the night, but was perfectly serene and clear at day-break, so that we have no near prospect of our departure. The day became fine and seemed to invite us to recommence astronomical observations, and altho' a sufficient series had been made both for Latitude and longitude at the hot-springs connected by survey with this place, yet we began a new series. Equal altitudes of the sun were taken before and after noon; three distances of the moon and sun's limbs


i8o5 1 were taken near 2^ p.m. and in the evening January] thj-ge distances of the moon's west limb from Aldebaran were taken between 6 & 7^ p.m. — a greater number would have been taken, but in the first case the Sun got behind some trees and in the second case, the moon was in a similar situation, if tomorrow proves fine we shall prosecute the same operations to more advantage, having ordered several trees to be cut down which stood in the way — Wind S.E.

The day continued fine and of a mild tem-'perature; some few clouds keep up our hopes of a change — Thermometer at 8^ p.m. 28°— Extremes 2 2°-55°

Sunday 6\'' Thermometer before sun-rise in air 2 8° in river water 38? This morning proved cloudy contrary to expectation and revived our hopes of a change of weather favorable to our descent: This state of the atmosphere continued all day; from time to time there was a little light rain or mist. The rain increased a little after dark,-but still very light: the snow seems now melted away to about one fifth or sixth of the original quantity; we began to apprehend that the whole would disappear without any influence upon the river, but now it has risen about 12 inches: Thermometer at 8*? p.m. 44° Extremes 28^-50°

Monday 7*> Thermometer in air 64° in river water 44°


Last night it rained very lightly by intervals, so fiSos little indeed that a cylindric vessel placed to re- [January ceive it, did not contain enough to be measured. During the night the temperature was extremely w^arm, and the weather continues to be cloudy, but not very dark, so that our prospect of rain is not very flattering; the river has nevertheless risen 18 inches since last night, which has no doubt been caused by the melting of the snows. The sun shews himself at intervals between the clouds: it became so warm that we dined abroad under the shade of lofty pine and oak trees, upon the wild game of the forest and the river, such as Venison, wild Turkey, bear. Cygnet &c: The thermometer at the hour of dinner was at y^° which at this season produces the sensation of a summer's sun of 90°; the river continues to rise, and we have taken the resolution to wait the issue of the present state of the weather and to set out at all events; if there be not water enough to go over the falls with safety by the oar, we shall pass along by letting ourselves down by the help of a rope, step by step, until the danger is passed. Thermometer at 8!" p.m. 38° Extremes 38^-78° In the evening the river continues to rise.

Thermometer in air 28? in river water 46° Tuesday 8'> Last night was cloudy, moist and cold, the river rose considerably in the night; we suppose it to


i8o5 1 be about 6 feet perpendicular, higher than the January J jgyel of the river when we came up, we now think ourselves secure of going down with speed and safety; orders were therefore given to embark our baggage and prepare for departing. We had the satisfaction of taking with us an abundance of fresh provision chiefly venison, to supply us to the Post of the Washita. We accordingly set off between 9 & lo o'clock and landed a little below upon the opposite shore and went to examine the first rapids, which we found to be very safe; we re-embarked, and by directing our course between the breakers, passed along with the rapidity of an arrow in perfect security: we continued moving with great rapidity on the face of the current, but thought it prudent to land and view a second rapid, and after exploring the best passage we passed down in perfect safety.

We got over the great * Chutes' about i o'clock, two of our oars having been violently dashed overboard by the willows, the Pilot thinking it safest to keep the eastern shore on board; we halted below and regained our oars by sending up the Canoe. There we dined and went on & stopped a little below to examine the flinty promontory already noticed on the 3*^ December. We took some specimens of the rock resembling the Turkey oil-stone: it appears to me to be too hard; I remarked that the strata


[ '55]

of this chain ran perpendicularly nearly East and [1805 West, crossed by fissures at right angles 5, 6 to [January 8 feet apart; the laminae were from ^ to 4 or 5 inches thick. About a league below on the same side, landed at Whetstone hill and took several specimens; this projecting hill consists of a mass of greyish blue schistus of considerable hardness and about 20 feet perpendicular; near the top, it was in a state of progression towards decomposition, being there extremely crumbly and part of it changing into a dirty yellowish color: the laminae were in general perpendicular, but not regularly so, and from ^ to 2 inches in thickness, but did not split asunder with an even surface: went on and encamped about ten leagues below Ellis' Camp. Thermometer at S^ p.m. 37? Extremes 28°—37° It rained lightly after we encamped, which rendered the flat ground of our encampment very wet and the wood difficult to burn.

Thermometer in air 42°, in river water 44° Wednesday 9^? — The river fallen about six inches — During the night it rained by intervals, but very lightly, the air was moist and cold, the soil here immediately under the vegetable stratum is yellowish and of little consistency, resembling greatly the understratum observed near the hot springs, produced probably by the same cause, the decomposition of schistus. Last evening ordered


1805 ^ provisions to be dressed for the day, to save the January J ^jj^e of landing during the day for that purpose; about two miles below our Camp landed to examine some freestone and blue slate in sight of * Bayou de la Prairie de Champignole' mentioned the 2^ Dec' The freestone of which we took specimens, seems proper for grindstones, scythe-stones &c; but the blue slate as it is called is only bluish schistus, hard & brittle; and not proper for the roofing of houses; we have not seen slate good for that purpose except some discovered on one of the Doctor's excursions on the Bayou Calfat. Much game on the river, such as Geese, ducks, swans &c; they continue equally wild and difficult of approach as before, so that we derive little benefit from that source.

The day continued dark, cloudy & cold with the wind at North; at 11^ a.m. it began to snow and hail with rain by intervals: we observed nothing this day meriting remark, different from what we saw on our way up. Towards evening it began to clear away; and soon after we encamped the sky became serene. By the Pilot's estimation we made this day nineteen leagues, which probably do not exceed forty miles: we passed five of our night encampments on the way up. Encamped a league above * Cache a Ma9on' —slept a little higher on the 27^!" Novem! Thermometer at 8^ p.m. 24°, Extremes 2\°-\i°. at


2^ p.m. 36° The moon and stars shone with f 1805 uncommon lusture. 1^ January

Thermometer in air 23°, in river water 42°— Thursday io'> river fallen 7 inches. The face of the heavens changed much in the night, it became extremely dark and cloudy, and this morning with the wind at north; it is cold, damp and penetrating; the river fallen seven inches during the night. After setting out, the clouds began to dissipate & the sun to shew himself, a very agreeable sight to travellers in cold & unpleasant weather; it continued never-the-less cold all day, the sun not possessing power to soften the rigorous cold which prevailed, the thermometer not rising above the freezing point from morning ujntil night. We made this day by the Pilots account fourteen leagues and encamped at *auges d'Ar-clon' (Arclon's troughs) three leagues below the little misouri; slept near this place on the 23*^ november: it appears by reference to the Journal, that we were thirteen days in going up from this place to Ellis' Camp, which has required but three broken days to come down, having made several stops to examine certain objects on our way down, and to day we made a more considerable delay at the Camp of a M. Le Fevre. This was an intelligent man, a native of the Illinois, now residing at the Arcansas; he is come here with some Delaware and other


[ >S8 ]

1805 1 Indians whom he has fitted out with goods, and January J receives peltry, fur &c at a stipulated price, as it is brought in by the hunters. This gentleman informs us that a considerable party of the Osages from the Arcansa river have made an excursion round by the prairies towards the red river, and down the little misouri as low as the * fourche d*Antoine', and there meeting with a small party of Cherokees, are supposed to have killed four of their number & others are missing; Three Americans and ten Chicasaws went a hunting into that quarter, who may also have been in danger, those Ozages being no respecters of persons. M. Le Fevre possesses considerable knowledge of the interior of the Country; he confirms the accounts we have already obtained that the hills or mountains which give birth to the various sources of this little river are in a manner insulated; that is, they are entirely shut in and enclosed by the immense planes or prairies which extend beyond the red river to the South & beyond the Missouri (or at least some of its branches) to the north and range along the eastern base of the great chain or dividing ridge, commonly known by the name of the sand hills, which separate the waters of the Mis-sisippi from those which fall into the western pacific ocean: The breadth of this great plane is not well ascertained, it is said by some to be at certain parts or in certain directions not less


[ '59 ]

than two hundred leagues, but I believe it is fiSos agreed by all that have a knowledge of the U^'^*^^'7 Western Country, that the mean breadth is at least two thirds of this quantity; a branch of the Misouri called the river platte or shallow river is said to take its rise so far south, as to derive its first waters from the neighbourhood of the sources of the Red and Arcansa rivers. By the expression planes or prairies in this place is not to be understood a dead flat resembling certain savannahs, whose soil is stiff and impenetrable, often under water & bearing only a coarse gras§ resembling reeds; very far different are the western Prairies, which expression signifys only a country without timber: Those Prairies are neither flat nor hilly, but undulating into gently swelling lawns and expanding into spacious val-lies in the center of which is always found a little timber growing upon the banks of brooks and rivulets of the finest water, the whole of those prairies is represented to be composed of the richest and most fertile soil; the most luxuriant & succulent herbage covers the surface of the Earth interspersed with millions of flowers and flowering shrubs of the most ornamental and adorning kinds: Those who have viewed only a skirt of those prairies, speak of them with a degree of enthusiasm as if it was only there that Nature was to be found in a state truely perfect; they declare that the fertility and beauty

[ «6o]

1805 1 of the rising grounds, the extreme richness of January] ^y^^ Vallies, the coolness and excellent quality of the waters found in every valley, the Salubrity of the atmosphere and above all the grandeur and Majesty of the enchanting landscape which this Country presents, inspires the Soul with sensations not to be felt in any other region of the Globe. This Paradise is now very thinly inhabited by a few tribes of savages and by immense herds of Wild Cattle (Bison) which people those countries; the Cattle perform regular migrations according to the seasons, from south to north, and from the planes to the mountains; and in due time taught by their instincts take a retrograde direction: those tribes move in the rear of y? Herds and pick up stragglers & such as lag behind, which they kill with the bow and arrow for their subsistence; should it be found that of this rich and desireable Country there is 500 miles square, and from report, there is probably much more, the whole of it being cultivable, it will admit of the fullest population, and will at a future day vie with the best cultivated & most populous countries on the Globe: in this particular the province of Holland exceeds perhaps all others; there, one million of acres support two millions of Inhabitants; but as Maritime Countries enjoy superior advantages respecting population, by the interchange of their manufactures for the necessaries of life, which


[ '61 ]

last in an inland country must be totally drawn fiSos from the product of the proper soil, we shall \January suppose this new Country to be populated in the proportion of one tenth only of that of Holland, in which case it will be capable of subsisting a nation composed of twenty six millions of Souls. This Country is not exposed to be ravaged by those sudden and impetuous deluges of rain which in most hot countries and even in the Missisippi Territory, do sometimes tear up & sweep away with irresistible fury the crop and the soil together; on the contrary, rain is said to become more rare in proportion as the great chain of mountains is approached, and it would seem that within the sphere of attraction of those elevated chains little or no rain falls upon the adjoining planes; this relation is the more credible, as in that respect our new Country may resemble other flat or comparatively low countries similarly situated, such as the Country lying between the Andes and the Western pacific: the planes are supplied with nightly dews so extremely abundant as to have the effect of refreshing showers of rain, and the spacious vallies which are extremely level may with facility be watered by the rills & brooks which are never absent from those situations: such is the description of the better known country lying to the south of the red river, from Nacok-doches towards Sf Antonio in the province of


[ '62]

i8o5 \ Texas:* the richest crops are said to be pro-January j jjuced there without rain, but agriculture in that quarter is at low ebb; the small quantities of maize furnished by the Country, is said to be produced without cultivation, a rude opening is made in the earth just sufficient to deposit the grain at the distance of four or five feet in irregular squares, and the rest is left to nature; the soil is naturally tender, spongy and rich, & seems always to retain humidity sufficient with the bounteous dews of heaven to bring the crops to maturity.

The red and Arcansa rivers whose Courses are very long pass thro' portions of this fine Country, they are both navigable to an unknown distance by boats of proper construction; the Arcansa river is however understood to have greatly the advantage over its neighbour with respect to the facility of Navigation: some difficult places are met with in the red river below the Nakitosh, after which it is good for 150 leagues (probably the computed leagues of the Country of nearly 2 miles each) there the Voyager meets with a very serious obstacle, viz the commencement of the Raft as it is called, that is, a natural covering which conceals the whole river for an extent of 17 leagues continually augmenting by the drift wood brought down by

* The X is pronounced gutturally, precisely in the same tone as the Scotch pronounce the gh in night, light &c


[ '63 ]

every considerable fresh; this covering which [1805 for a time was only drift wood, supports at this IJ*""*'7 time a vegetation of every thing abounding in the neighbouring forest, not excepting trees of considerable size, & the river may be frequently passed without any knowledge of its existence; it is said that the annual inundation is opening for itself a new passage thro' the low grounds near the hills, but it must be a long time before Nature unaided will dig out a passage sufficient for the reception of the waters of the red river; about 50 leagues above the natural bridge is the residence of the Cadeaux or Cadadoquis Nation, of whose good qualities we have already spoken; the Inhabitants estimate the Post of Nakitosh to be half way between New Orleans and the Cadeaux Nation: above this point the red river is said to be embarrassed by many rapids falls and shallows, none of which are said to be met with in the Arcansa river as high as it is known, except in the very lowest state of its waters; the navigation is reported to be safe and agreeable, the lands on either side are of the best quality & well watered with springs, brooks & rivulets, & many situations proper for mill-seats; from the description it would seem, there is along this river a regular gradation of hill and Dale presenting their extremities to the river; the hills are gently swelling eminencies and the Dales are spacious Vales with

1805 1 living water meandering thro' them: the forests January J consist of handsome lofty trees, & chiefly what is called open woods, without cane-brake or much underwood; the quality of its lands is supposed much superior to that of the red river, until it ascends to the Prairie Country, where the lands are probably very similar. About 200 leagues up the arcansa, is an interesting place called the salt Prairie, there is a considerable fork of the river there, and a kind of Savannah where the salt water is continually oozing out & spreading over the surface of a plane; during the hot dry Summer Season, the salt may be raked up into large heaps; a natural crust of a hand-breadth in thickness is formed when the dry season prevails; this place is not often approached on account of the danger from the Ozage Indians; much less do the White hunters venture to ascend higher where it is generally believed that silver is to be found. We have been also informed that high up the arcansa river, salt is to be found in form of a Solid rock, & may be dug out with the Crow-bar. The waters of the Arcansa like those of the red river, are not potable during their low state; they are both charged highly with a reddish earth or marl and are also extremely brackish; this inconvenience is not greatly felt upon the Arcansa, where springs, rills & brooks of the finest fresh water are so frequent; the red river I believe is not


SO favorably situated. Every account seems to f 1805 demonstrate that immense natural magazines of 1 January salt must exist in the great chain of mountains to the westward, all rivers flowing from those mountains during the dry season retain a strong impregnation of salt, until that property becomes imperceptible by the accession of the fresh waters of many other rivers.—The great western prairies, besides the herds of wild Cattle (Bison commonly called Buffalo), are also stocked with vast numbers of a species of wild goat, (not resembling the domestic goat) extremely swift of foot; as the description given of this goat has not been very perfect, I have supposed from its swiftness, it might be the antelope; or it may possibly be a goat which has escaped from the Spanish settlements of new Mexico: I have conversed with a Canadian who has been much with the Indians to the westward, this man told me that he had seen great flocks of an wool-bearing animal larger than common sheep; the Wool is much mixed with hair. This is probably the same animal which has been described & of which a plate has been gjven in the medical repository of New York. The Canadian pretends also to have seen an unicorn; the single horn he says rises out of the forehead & curls back, according to his description so as to convey the idea of the fossil Cornu Ammonis; this man says he has travelled beyond the great dividing


1805 I ridge so far as to have seen a large river flow-January j ijjg ^Q tiie westw^ard; the great dividing mountain is so lofty that it requires two days to ascend from its base to its top, other ranges of inferior mountains lie before and behind it; they are all very rocky & sandy, large lakes and vallies lie between the mountains; some of the lakes are so large as to contain considerable islands, and rivers flow from some of them: great numbers of fossil bones of very large dimentions are seen among the mountains, which the Canadian supposed to be of the Elephant; he does not pretend to have seen any of the precious metals, but has seen a mineral which he supposed might yield Copper: from the top of the high mountain, the view is bounded by a curve as upon the ocean and extends over the most beautiful prairies which seem to be unbounded particularly to the East; the finest of the lands he has seen are on the Misouri, no other can compare in point of richness and fertility with those of that river.

This Canadian as well as M. Le Fevre say that the Osages of the tribe of white hairs in the month of December (early in the month), plundered all the white hunters and traders upqn the arcansa river. All the old french hunters agree in accusing the Osages of being extremely faithless, particularly those on the arcansa, the others they say are but very little more to be depended


[ '67]

upon; they pretend to make peace & enter into J1805 terms of amity, but on the first favorable occa- [January sion, they rob, plunder and even kill without hezitation. The other indian tribes speak of them with great abhorrence, and say they are a barbarous uncivilized race. The different nations who hunt in their neighbourhood, have been concerting plans for their destruction.

M. Le Fevre informs me that the Nation of the arcansas always waging a defensive war with the Osages, propose sending in the spring of the year a deputation of three Chiefs to the Government of the United States. They say that the Country from the Washita river on the south to the river S! Francis on the north is their property, that they propose to say to the Government of the U. S. "We will relinquish to " your people all our lands to the North of the "arcansa river, on the white river and on the ** river St Francis; we will also relinquish our "lands upon the missisippi lying between the " rivers arcansa and Washita to an extent west-" erly far beyond any settlements which have " been attempted by the white people, the lim-" its of which we will ascertain; but we request " that the powerful arm of the U. S. will de-" fend us their children in the possession of the " remainder of our hunting grounds, lying be-" tween the Arcansa and Washita rivers." — Thermometer at 8^ p.m. 19°, Extremes 19°-

[ '68 ]

i8o5 132° The Moon & Stars shine with uncommon January/ splendor.

Friday ii'? Thermometer in air 11°, in river water 39° River fallen 43^ inches. Wind moderate at North. The morning is fine, the sky perfectly serene, but the air very cold and penetrating: passed the petit ecor a Fabri, the osier which grows abundantly upon the beaches above is not seen any lower upon this river, and at this place we begin to see the small tree called * Charnier' which grows only at the water side, and is to be seen all the way down the Washita below this place, the Latitude here is about 33° 40' which is the limit Nature seems to have placed to those two vegetables, one on the north & the other to the south.

I have already remarked in my Journal of the 17^ November that we saw no long moss (Tilandsia) above Latitude 33° & conjectured that Nature had limited its vegetation to that parallel; having this circumstance in my recollection, I asked M. Le fevre for information respecting its existence at the Arcansa settlement, which is known to be not far beyond 33° of Latitude; he informed me that about ten miles to the south of their settlement the growth of the Tilandsia is limited, & that so curiously as if a line had been drawn East and West for the purpose, as it ceases all at once & not by degrees;


[ '69]

hence it would appear that Nature herself has J1805 marked with a distinguishing feature the line [J^""^^ which Congress has thought proper to draw between the territories of Orleans and of Louisiana. It is a question of curiosity at what Latitude the limit of the Tilansia is found in the atlantic states, and also the Cypress, which last upon this small river is not found higher than 34° of latitude, it is believed to be much higher on the Missisippi: our maps represent a Cypress swamp on the confines of the states of Maryland & Delawar, in Latitude 38°^^ at the sources of Pocomock River. (^ Is it the same species of Cypress which is found in the Carolinas, Missisippi Territory &c ?

The weather continued clear & very cold all day, we landed at the Cadaux path to make a fire and dine, the Thermometer at 3^ p.m. 32° and at 8!" p.m. it fell to 26°—Encamped 1% league below * petite pointe coupee', being nearly the same place where we found the latitude on the 21'.' November to be 33° 29' 29"; having made by the pilot's reckoning about 15 leagues; we stopped twice to day, which has retarded us nearly two hours; our rate of going has been about 2% of those leagues p: hour.

Thermometer in air 20°, in river water 40° Saturday 12"* — river risen an inch. Much vapor ascending from the river. Part of the night was cloudy


i8o5 1 and this morning the heavens are not entirely January J cloudless, we therefore expect an approaching change of weather. The air is damp and penetrating so that it continues yet very cold on board the boat; as the day advanced, it proved more cloudy and disagreeable and altho' at 2^ P- n^-the thermometer was found at 43°, the sensation of cold to the human body was greater than in a dry air at 22°—the face of the heavens was overspread with clouds & the atmosphere extremely moist: we made a good encampment in the evening called * Campement des bignets' (fritter camp) being about 18 of the Pilots leagues, tho' not much exceeding two days of our voyage up, about 27 oi" 3^ miles by our own reckoning; we passed this place between breakfast and dinner on the 19^ november. The Thermometer at 8!^ p. m. 30?

Sunday 13'.'^ Thermometer in air 27° in river water 40° — river risen i j4 inches — Calm. The morning is very fine and the atmosphere dry, consequently the temperature not cold to the human body. These two mornings the river has risen a little, notwithstanding that we have been without rain for several days past, & it will be remembered that the three first days of this voyage, the river was found each morning to be fallen; this is to be accounted for by the boat gaining upon the velocity of the stream more


in the day than it loses in the night. Since we [1805 have got below the rapids, the current is much [January more gentle and we make only two of the Pilots leagues p! hour, which does not exceed perhaps 4 english miles, it appears that in nine hours (one day's) rowing down we have made the same distance which we made in 13 hours coming up, the current at the time of our ascent being nothing, and the space passed over 36 miles, it will be found from these data that in each 24 hours we gain upon the Current 6j4 miles; we have therefore reason to conclude that we have got beyond the apex of the tide or wave occasioned by the fresh, & are descending along an inclined plane, but as we always encamp at night, it is not surprising that in the morning we find ourselves in deeper water because the Apex of the tide is constantly endeavouring to overtake us, and in the morning we find ourselves on a more elevated part of the inclined plane, which we had left behind us the evening before.

This morning no condensed vapor was visible on the surface of the river, yesterday it was considerable; hence it appears that 13° difference of temperature (the river being highest) does not condense vapor with sufficient rapidity to render it visible, altho' 20° are more than are necessary; it must not be omitted to be mentioned that this morning the atmosphere was extremely dry, and therefore greedy of moisture,


i8o5 1 and yesterday it was very moist, and consequently January] j^qj. disposed to disolve water rapidly. The day proved cool, tho' not disagreeably so; the wind in the afternoon N.E. and air moist: Made this day by the computed distances about 153^ leagues and encamped about one league below where we found our Latitude to be 3 3° i 3' 16".5 on the 17^^ November, so that we have again completed two days voyage ascending in one descending. Thermometer at 8!^ p.m. 30° Extremes 27°—53°

Monday i4'> Thermometer in air 23°, in river water 40° — river risen ly^ inch. Wind very light at N.W. The atmosphere is dry and the temperature to the human body seems not very cold; there is a thin condensed vapor upon the surface of the river, the difference of temperature between the river water and air being this morning 17°; yesterday the atmosphere being nearly in the same state i 3° were insufficient to render the vapor visible. If our hygrometers were instruments of a less dubious nature, and capable of indicating by a scale the absorbing, disolving or attracting power of the atmosphere for water, without being influenced by heat and cold we should then be able to determine a priori at what difference of temperature between water and air corresponding to a given degree of the hygrometer, ascending vapor will be visibly condensed.

densed. A green moss is found upon the branches f 1805 of trees which are immersed in the waters of the U^"^^''/ inundation, none of the same species appears in a more elevated situation; when the waters subside vegetation does not seem entirely at a stand in those mosses which are but a foot or two above the surface, they continue to be of a lively green & hang to the length of 5 or 6 inches: the vegetation of this moss must commence under water; it may be of the same nature with the green matter deposited in fresh water conduits which has been examined by Priestly & others, & which here has arrived to a higher state of perfection from its free & open situation; it is evident this moss must vegetate under the impulse of a considerable current.

In the afternoon passed Latitude 33° and the Island of Mallet noticed in the Journal of the 15'^ of November: made about 19 leagues this day, being about 2^ day's voyage ascending; since we have got into the low alluvial Country the channel is narrower and the velocity of the current greater; we are now encamped where we passed in the afternoon of the 14'!" November. The day continued fine and of an agreeable temperature; at 3!* p.m. the thermometer was at 53°, at 8!" p.m. 32°. An eclipse of the moon will take place this night after midnight, we prepare to observe it; regulated the watch as near as possible to the apparent time at the


[ '74]

i8o5 1 setting of the Sun; to-morrow we shall give an January J account of our observations, the sky is perfectly


Tuesday 15!^ Thermometer in air 30° in river water 40° — no vapor visible on the surface of the river: river risen i yi inch—wind light at S.E. cloudy. Prepared last evening to observe the Eclipse of the Moon, with a very indifferent Spy-glass magnifying about 8 times. The commencement of the Eclipse was not correctly noted, occasioned by the very strong effect of the penumbra in our perfectly serene & clear sky, the moon not being far removed from the Zenith, which induced a belief that the Eclipse had actually commenced at 12^ 32', this circumstance produced some inattention at the instant of the true commencement, which was supposed to have happened at 12*" 40'; but the commencement of total darkness was observed with due attention, and is believed to be as correct as circumstances with our instruments would admit, and took place at 13'' 37'. It is believed that the uncertainty of the moment of observation did not exceed half a minute, I am rather disposed to say a quarter of a minute, for the transparency of the atmosphere was as perfect as can ever be expected in situations not more elevated than ours. We shall ascertain the error of the watch below at some known point, whose


[ '75 ]

latitude & position can be deduced by referrence JiSos to our geographical Journal, & this we shall [January again perform on our arrival at the post of Washita, from which we shall gain the rate of the watch's going & the whole may be referred to the meridian of the Post & will serve to compare with the results of our lunar observations made there on our way up.

This morning the heavens are veiled by clouds; during the night the thermometer was down to 28" with a pure serene sky and the atmosphere so dry that the cold was not very sensible; this morning with a higher temperature and moist air, it is cold and penetrating. We saw this morning the first long moss (Tilandsia) called generally by the french * barbe espagnole (Spanish beard) on trees growing on the margin of the river about 2}4 leagues (5 miles) above the * Bayou des Butes.' At this time also we emerge from the alluvial country noticed in the former part of this Journal; the banks are now of a good elevation, about 15 to 18 feet above the present level of the river & probably not liable to be inundated, whereas the alluvial lands we have just quitted, are subject to be overflowed from 8 to i 2 feet; we saw none of the green moss along the alluvial tract, which I much regret, having intended to take some specimens for examination, I am in doubt whether any of the same species grows below, as yet


i8o5 1 we do not see it at the * bayou des butes.' The January J Sun at last broke forth and we landed to take his altitude for the correction of the watch, the position was recognized by the mouth of a Creek, so that by a reference to the geographical Journal, we found that the Latitude of this point is 32° 49' 24", being the same which will correspond with N 10° W 8^ 8>^' on the 14*!' nov! ascending; the Sun's dble Alt: lower limb was 66° 36' 45" Ind : err: +12' 20" taken at 10^ 56' 24" a.m. — The day became cloudy in the afternoon and the thermometer rose to 63? which we consider as an indication of rain.

We made this day nearly 15 computed leagues, being the eighth day from Ellis Camp, and are now encamped within five of those leagues from the post of the Washita, being about a mile above the place where we dined on the 12^ November, Latitude then found was 32° 34' 47". The moon and stars shine with a mild lusture, no appearance of change in the weather notwithstanding the increased temperature of the atmosphere. Thermometer at 8^ p.m. 43°.

Wednesday 161'' ... in river water 41° — river risen 1% inch: a . . . proceeding from atmospheric moisture, being very different from what we see arising out of the river under considerable differences of temperature — Arrived at the Post of


Washita about noon — The day proved very j 1805 fine and warm, the thermometer at 3^ p.m. [January being at 65° and at 8!" p.m. it remained at 60° — Found all w^ell at the post — no news of any importance — our people all in good health except one Soldier who has been a good deal incommoded by a dysentery; but he is not in danger. Returned the hired boat.

Thermometer in air 60° in river water 44° — Thursday \f> river risen one inch. Wind at S.W.—very clear during the night but cloudy this morning— made the following observation to correct the watch and ascertain her rate of going. At 8*^ 53' 7" Sun's apparent double altitude of the lower limb 36° 44'45" Ind: err:+ 12' 30".

Employed the people in getting Mast and Oars f Friday iS*.'' for our large boat. Judging it of importance to j ^ Saturday get to Natchez as soon as possible, I determined after being disappointed in procuring horses, to take the Canoe with one Soldier and my own Domestic, and push down to Catahoola, from whence there is a road to Concord about 30 miles across the . . . [page torn].

Set ofFabout day-break, and arrived after night Sunday 20^'' at the lower settlement, about 20 computed leagues from the Post. Called at the house of an old hunter with whom I had conversed on my


[ '78 ]

i8o5 1 way up: This man informs me that at the place January j called the mine on the little Misouri, there is a smoke, which ascends perpetually from a particular place, and that the vapor is sometimes insupportable; the river or a branch of it passes over a bed of mineral, which from the description given is no doubt martial pyrites. In a creek or branch of the Washita called * fourche a Luke'* there is found on the beaches and in the cliiFs a great number of globular bodies, some as large or larger than the head of a man, which when broken, exhibit the appearance of Gold, Silver and precious Stones; this most probably is pyrites with chrystalized spar: also at the * fourche des glaises a Paul',! there is near to the river a cliff full of hexagonal prisms terminated by pyramids, which appear to grow out of the rock, some an inch in diameter & six to eight inches long: there are beds of pyrites found in several small creeks communicating with the river Washita: but it appears that . . . [page torn] indications on the Misouri were most considered, because some of the hunters actually worked upon it & sent a parcel of the ore to New Oreleans as observed above: it is the belief of the people here that the mineral contained precious metal, but that the Spanish Government did not chuse that any mine should

* 3 leagues above Ellis' Camp.

t higher up the river than ' fourche a Luke.'


be opened so near to the British Settlements, for fiSos which reason an express prohibition was issued ^�^ ""^v against any farther work being done upon the mine; since which time it has been no more spoken of. This man procured me some small roots & a few seeds of the patate a chevreuil; he also took me to the next house where I saw a solitary tree of the * bois d'Arc ' (bow-wood) or yellow wood, which was raised from a seed brought from the little Misouri; I requested some large branches, but could only obtain from the Old Lady mistress of the place, two very small ones; the fruit fallen before maturity lay upon the ground, some were of the size of a small orange, with a rind full of tubercles; the color tho' in appearance faded, still retained a resemblance to pale gold: the tree in its native soil when loaded with its golden fruit (nearly as large as the Egg of an Ostrige), presents I am told the most splendid appearance; its foliage is of the finest deep green greatly resembling the varnished foliage of the orange tree, and upon the whole no forest tree can compare with it in respect . . . ental grandeur. The bark of the young tree which I saw resembled in its texture externally the Dogwood bark; but its color is a reddish or brownish yellow; the appearance of the wood recommends it for trial as an article which may yield a yellow die: I hope to succeed in raising trees


[ '8o J

1805 1 from the cuttings and a small Cion which I January J have procured; the people suppose this tree too young to mature its fruit, as it has always hitherto fallen when of the size of an orange, I am inclined rather to suspect that the failure may be occasioned by its open and exposed situation, as it naturally grows under the shade of the forest, this tree is about six inches in diameter, it is deciduous and appears to be in a sound and healthy state; the branches are numerous and full of short thorns or prickles, it seems to recommend itself as highly proper for hedges or live fences, which are greatly wanted in many parts of the United States: this tree is known to exist near the Nakitosh (perhaps Lat: 32°) and upon the river Arcansa high up (perhaps in Lat: 36°), it is therefore probable it may thrive from Lat: 28° to 40° and will be a great acquisition to a great part of the U. S. should it possess no other merit than that of being ornamental.

On my way down I endeavoured to discover a place said to produce Gypsum, but being without a proper guide I failed in the research; I have no doubt of its existence, and have taken notes of the positions of two places where it has been found; one of which is the first hill or high land which touches the river on the west above the large Creek called Bayou Calumet and the other is the second high land on the same side; as those are two points of the same


[ '8. ]

continued ridge, it is probable that an immense fiSos body of Gypsum will be found in the bowels U^^^aT of the hill connecting those two points and perhaps extending far beyond them; it has been said that fossil coal is found on the east side of the river opposite to the second hill; it is probably Carbonated wood only: a person who pretends to have been up among the sources of the Washita i oo leagues higher than the hot springs, declares having found true mineral coal, which burns with a strong heat and bright flame without the aid of other fuel, a property which Carbonated wood does not possess. I do not give entire faith to this last report, the person who informed me being fond of the marvellous.

Continue my voyage with contrary winds and f Monday 21^' arrived the evening of the ^^^ at the Catahoola, | ^^^ Tuesday which by computation is fifty leagues from the post of Washita: At this place a french man named Hebrard is settled, who keeps a ferry across the black river: here the road from Natchez forks, one branch of it leading to the settlements on the red river and the other up to the Post of the Washita: The proprietor of this place has been a hunter and great traveller up the Washita & into the western countries; he confirms generally the accounts we have received; it appears from what he and others say, that in the neighbourhood of the hot-springs,


1805 1 higher up among the mountains, and upon the Januaryj little niisouri, during the summer season. Explosions are very frequently heard proceeding from under ground, and not rarely a curious phenomenon is seen which is termed the blowing of the mountains, that is, confined elastic gaz forces a passage thro' the side or top of a hill driving before it a great quantity of earth and mineral matter: it appears that during the winter season the explosions and blowing of the mountains entirely cease, from whence we may conclude that the cause of those phenomena is comparatively superficial, being brought into action by the increased heat of the more direct rays of the summer-sun.

Upon my arrival at the house of M. Hebrard, I enquired for horses to carry me across the low country to Concord opposite to Natchez, the distance by the road is computed 30 miles, but it is probable the direct distance falls short of 25, and it is remarkable that the river Washita preserves a kind of parallelism to the Missisippi until it comes within the influence of the highlands of the arcansa, & thence it is deflected to the North west & probably holds a middle ground between the red river and the arcansa; the inclination of the missisippi is such that the walnut-hills are 30 miles to the*east of the Natchez, the Post of the Washita will be found therefore nearly under the same meridian with


that of Natchez very contrary to the general f 1805 idea. — M. Hebrard very obligingly engaged to \Ja""a''y furnish me with horses, which it was necessary to hunt up in the woods; In the meantime I went to view the Indian mounts spoken of in the beginning of this Journal; I find this to be a very interesting place, it is the point of confluence of three navigable waters viz The Washita river. The tenza and the Catahoola, the second communicates with the missisipi lowlands by the intervention of other creeks and lakes & by one in particular called the Bayou d'argent which enters into the missisippi about 14 miles above Natchez, during high water there is navigation for batteaux of any burthen along those bayoux, a large lake called S* John's lake occupies a considerable part of this passage between the Missisippi and the Tenza; it is in a horse-shoe form, & has been at some former period the bed of the Missisippi, the nearest part of it is about one mile removed from the river of the present time; this lake possessing elevated banks similar to those of the river has been lately occupied & improved; many similar possessions and improvements have been made since the first news of the cession of Louisiana by the french to the American Government; I omitted to mention in its proper place that it is understood, that even the hot-springs included within a tract of some hundreds of acres were granted by the


1805 \ late Spanish Commandant of the Washita to January] gQj^g Q^e of his friends, but it is not believed that a regular patent was ever issued for that place, & it cannot be asserted that residence w^ith improvement can be set up as a plea to claim the land upon.

The Catahoola bayou is the third navigable stream; during the time of the inundation there is an excellent communication by the Lake of that name & from thence by large Creeks to the red river; The Country around the point of union of those three rivers is altogether alluvial; but the place of M. Hebrard's residence is no longer subject to inundation for reasons which have been already assigned; there is no doubt that as the country augments in population and riches, this place will become the site of a commercial inland town, which will hold pace with the progress and prosperity of the country. On this place are to be found a number of Indian mounts, one of which is of very considerable elevation, with a species of rampart surrounding a very large space which was no doubt the position of a fortified town; having taken some notes respecting this place, the whole will be digested and introduced into an Apendix which will be added to this Journal.

Wednesday 23"? This morning is cloudy and threatens rain, the horses are not found, therefore no prospect


of setting out to day; a little rain fell about 9!" fiSos a.m.—in the afternoon one of the horses only [January is found.

Last night there was much thunder and light- Thursday 24*.'' ning and this morning the rain falls very fast: Having no other employment I endeavoured to collect information, here I met w^ith an American who pretends to have been up the Arcansa river 300 leagues; the navigation of that river he says is good to that distance for boats drawing 3 or 4 feet water: I do not give implicit faith to this man, when he speaks largely of the silver which he pretends to have himself collected upon that river, and even says that on the Washita 30 leagues above the hot springs he has found silver ore so rich that 3 lib of it yielded one of silver, & that this was found in a Cave: he asserts also that the ore of the mine upon the little Misouri was carried to Kentucky by a certain Boon, where it was found to yield largely in silver: This American says he has also been up the red river, that there is a great rapid just below the raft or natural bridge & several others above it: The Cadaux Nation is 50 leagues above the raft, and near to their Village commences the Country of the great Prairies, and extend 4 or 500 miles west to the sand mountains as they are termed; those great planes extend south far beyond the red river; north over the Arcansa river and among


[ "86 ]

i8o5 1 the numerous branches of the Misouri. This man January J confirms the accounts of the beauty and fertility

of the western Country &c.—

This evening the other horse has been found

so that I hope to set out tomorrow morning.

Friday 25I'' The horses being late of fetching up, we set out only at 9 o'clock; the weather was cloudy but not cold; the meeting of three rivers here which form the black river, has given it a considerable width at this place, little short I think of 400 yards. There is no apparent current here and the river is rising very fast, which is attributed to the Missisippi flowing up into the red river. The rain which has fallen these two days past, has rendered the roads extremely wet and muddy; we made only one league in the hour; arrived at the bayou Crocodile at 2!" p.m. This place is considered half way from the black river to the Missisippi, & is one of those creeks which are extremely numerous in the low grounds & serve to assist in venting the waters of the inundation: the whole of the Country thro' which we have passed to day appears to be subject to the annual inundation; there are some places higher than others upon which Canes are found growing, the margins of water courses are always found more elevated than the lands at some distance, which degenerate into Cypress swamps and lakes.


At this place we found the waters of the Mis- fiSos sisippi had already flowed in so abundantly, that 1 January there was a necessity to prepare a raft for crossing, & having in company three white men who understood the business, the raft was prepared of logs of the driest wood we could procure lashed together with our horse ropes and halters; after two hours delay we got to the other side of the bayou which was about 60 yards wide including the overflowed low margin of the Creek; we had yet 5 leagues to make & it was already 4 o'clock; we pushed on, but the roads were little better than mud and water for several miles together; we were unable to get on fast enough to pass over this bad part of the road before it became extremely dark, and we expected to be obliged to spend the night in the woods without fire, perhaps without a spot of dry land to rest upon: it was diflicult to preserve the path; in this respect we trusted chiefly to the sagacity of our horses, at length they brought us out of the woods & at 9!* p.m. We got to a new settled plantation four miles short of Concord, where we were hospitably entertained with good homely fare, particularly milk, of which I had not seen a drop upon the Washita, not even at their principal settlement; In those new Countries and all over the Opelousa Country, the Horned Cattle are in a semi-savage state, no provision is made or laid up for them during winter; in the fall of


[ '88 ]

i8o5 1 the year it is therefore necessary to turn out the January] Q^if -^ith the Cow, Otherwise she would abandon her young in the hands of its owner where it would infallibly perish; the Cattle move off in search of winter food & the proprietor frequently knows nothing of the situation of his stock, untill the warm weather of the Spring & Summer season calls them out in search of the young tender herbage of the open fields.

Saturday 26*.'' Set Out in the morning with a very cold freezing air; I now think it extremely fortunate that we were not detained last night in the woods, as we certainly should have spent a very disagreeable night. Arrived in an hour at Concord; the settlement of this place has commenced only since the treaty of limits between the U. S. and Spain, but it has received its most considerable augmentation since the cession of Louisiana to the U. S. by citizens of the Missisippi territory who have either established their residence altogether upon newly acquired lands, or what has perhaps been equally common, have taken up tracts of land under the authority of the Spanish Commandant & have gone to the expense of improvements either in their own names or in the names of others before the 20*!" of December 1803 hoping thereby to hold their new possessions under the Sanction of the law. Exclusive of the few actual residents on the banks of the


[ »89]

Missisippi, there are two very handsome lakes ("1805 in the interior, on the banks of which settle- lJ^""^''y ments of a similar nature have been made.

Crossed the ferry and breakfasted at Natchez and arrived at my own house at ten o'clock where I had the satisfaction to find my family all well.

JOURNAL of a Geometrical Survey commencing at S! Catherine s landing on the East shore of the Missisippi descending to the mouth of the red river, and from thence ascending that river, the black river and river of the Washita as high as the Hot Springs in the proximity of the last named river.


THE distances are taken by time from a portable chronometer, and proportioned by a log-line divided into perches, run out for half a minute: consideration was always had for the velocity of the Current by deducting it immediately from the rate per log, when it merited attention: it is to be understood that the rate per log noted, continues the same untill it is again noted with change.

All meridian or other altitudes of the Sun above the horizon, noted in the following Journal, are to be understood of the lower limb, unless otherwise expressed.

An excellent Circle of reflection with a triple Index, made byTroughton of London graduated to lo'' of a degree, was used for taking altitudes, lunar distances &c; this Circle is supported on a pedestal which gives it a solidity & perfection never to be expected from any instrument held in the hand; the index error was regularly ascertained immediately after taking a meridian altitude, by observing the Sun's contact with his reflected image both above and below: for facility in practice the greater contact was added to the apparent double altitude when the index error was additive; and the lesser contact was added when the error was sub-tractive; which includes the Sun's semi-diameter and the correction of the index error giving at once the apparent double altitude of the Suns center, being careful to subtract the correction of refraction from the altitude of the lower limb only: altho' this was my

practice, I have agreeably to custom given always the Index error: some small differences will be found in calculating the Latitudes, arising from my practice, of prefering the Suns semidiameter taken from my instrument (generally smaller) to that found in the nautical almanack, Mf. Maskelyne astronomer royal has long since observed that the Sun's diameter as taken from Mayer's tables is 3'' too much, I observe that this error is corrected in the almanac for 1805.

The rate of going of the Chronometer having been frequently changed by being carried in the pocket, it was not proposed to depend upon its keeping the Longitude otherwise than as a good second hand watch to note the instance of astronomical observations, and was always preserved carefully in a horizontal position untill a connected series of observations was completed, during which time it is believed that the rate of going was sufficiently equable.

"Journal of a Geometrical Survey commencing at S^ Catherine's landing on the East shore of the Missisippi descending to the mouth of the red river, and from thence ascending that river, the black river and river of the Washita as high as the Hot Springs in the proximity of the last named river.

THE following courses and distances from S! Catherines landing to the mouth of the red river were taken on the return of the boat at the termination of the voyage, but are now placed with more propriety at the commencement of the survey.

South 2IO perches.

S70 W1212 at 810 Hootsell's plantation on

the right i ^ mile above the Island. S 30 W 120 passed between the Island and right

bank. South 240 S 40 E 210 S 30 E 240 S 20 W 930 S 60 W 240 West 492 S35 W 282 S 20 W 189

S 5 W1470 At 1418 passed Homochilo river on the left.

S 40 E 528

S 20 W 600

S 50 W 540

S 20 W 420

S 60 E 595

S 75 E 925 At 805 Buffalo river on the left; arrived at Fort adams.

S 30 W2250 At 1940 the Line of demarcation on the left 31° North Lat: & 6^ 6'. 42''. Long: West of Greenwich; the last by M. DeFerrer.

S 60 W 40

N 65 W 160

N 15 W 360

N 40 W 312

N 60 W 120

N 85 W 960 to the mouth of Red river.


ARRIVED at the mouth of the Red river the J1804 evening of the 17*!! of October: The Latitude \October and Longitude of this place having been accurately ascertained by Doctor Jose Joakin de Ferrer^ we did not think it necessary to lose any time on that account — Lat 31° 01' 15'' North, and Long: 6-7-1 1" west of Greenwich — proceeded to take the Courses and distances of the Red river as follows, beginning at the mouth of the river on the right margin.

Thursday, 18'?

N 14° E o'123'to a point on the same side: rate

p' Log 4 per: p' half minute, no

opposing Current. River 550 yards

wide. N 8 W -.47 to a point on the left side. N 20 W -.23 to a point, right bank. N 5 E -. 5 alongshore. River 300 yards wide. N 22 E -.22 to a point left side — a Creek to

the right. N 10 W -. 9 along shore. Rate of going 4 per. N 25 W-. 6 . . . d". N 45 W-.ii a lake on the right side. N 80 W -.22 to point right side. N 40 W-. 4 —river 250 yds wide. N 10 W-. 4 —no sensible current. N 32 E -.17 to a p" on the left 200 y-'wide. N 25 W-.ii to a p" on the right.

1804 1 N° 10 W-.16 to a p" on the left. October/ N?i5 W-. 6 to a p?. on the right.

N.. 25 W-.27 to a p" same side, a bend to the

right. N..38 W-. 7 along shore. N?40 E -,10 d?. S 75 E -.42 to a p.'. on the left. N 40 E -. 7 along shore. N 5 E -.41 to a p" on the right. N 40 E -. 6 to a p" on the left — a large Creek

on the right. Ns 80 W -.24 to a p.' on the right. N.. 10 E -.13 along shore. N..75 W-.23 alongshore. S 85W-.i6d?. N 75 W-.19 d.*?

S 50 W -.46 to a point on the right. Made this day 12 Miles 296 perches. Friday 19!^ Thermometer before Sun rise 46°

N 75 Wo'!i9'to a point on the left. Rate 7 perches per yi Minute. Same course 0.27 to do. on the right. N 30 W 0.30 along shore.

Wo.ii . . .d?. N 60 W 0.14 a point on the left: rate of going 7 perches per ]/2 Minute. W 0.23 along shore. Same course 0.26 a point on the right. N 75 W 0.33 along shore. N 50 W 0.26 to a point on the left: at 5' a Creek

on the left. N 70 W 0.22 a point on the right; wind contrary hove the log rate of going 4 perches.

N 35 Wo'!22'along shore. ri8o4

NioWo.ija point on the left, landed to ob-t October

serve and dined. Face of the Doub. ap. alt. O lower limb 97^'-Circle West o" In: er: —13' 11". 5 Lat: found

3iLi5'_48". N 60 W 0.40 a p' on right . . rate 5 perches. N 50 W o.ao along shore to the mouth of black

river 150 y?! wide, red river the

same width; entered Black river. N 35 E 0.25 a point on the left. N 10 E 0.31 along shore.


N 40 W oh6' along shore, river 100 yards wide.

S 75 W0.20 to a point on the right: sounded 20 feet, black sand, encamped for the night; made this day 15 miles 102 perches. Saturday 20!^ Thermometer before Sunrise 47°.

W 0.30 along shore — hove the Log, 4 perches per ^ min.

N 45 W 0.45 to a point on the right — temperature of the river 73°.

N 10 W0.28 to a point on the left — Chalybeate spring, temperature 66°.

N 0.16 along shore.

Same course 0.42 to a point on the right 6 J^ perches per log.

N 20 W0.30 along shore rate of going 4 perches per log.

lo Black River

1804 1 N 50 E 0^30'along shore river 80 yards wide — Octoberj Canes on the right.

E o.io to the left shore landed to observe

at noon & dine. Face of the O doub: mer: ap: alt: 95-34'. Circle East 5''. In: er + 13^—32''. 5—Lat found

31" 22'46''. 6. S 75 E 0.58 to a p? on the right & continue to the

left— Log 4^ perch per ^Minute. N 63 E 0.47 to a point on the right and continue

to a point of the left; Thermometer at 3"? 80° N 25 E 0.40 along shore — Canes on the right. N 45 W 0.27 along shore. S 80 W I. 6 . . ditto; encamped for the night.

Soundings 5 fathoms, black sand.

This day's voyage makes 13 miles

40 perches. Sunday 21" last ) Thermometer before sun rise 60° course continued J a little cloudey near the Horizon. S 80 W 0.48 along shore. N 45 W0.51 to an Island; rate per log 4^

perches. N 13 W I. 3 hoist sail, rate per log 8 perches:

cane brake, little settlement. N 20 E 0.25 to a point on the left. Rate per log

4^ perch. N25Wo.i4toa point on the right. N 40 E o. 6 to the left; landed to observe and

dine, clouds came over just at the

moment before the Sun came upon

the meridian, went off in a little

time, he had dipped: the double

In'er: + 13'. 34''which is too small, J1804 the latitude is too far north. '[October

N 75 E ©{'40'along shore. N 40 E 0.22 ditto Thermometer 83? S 30 E 0.23 Same course i. 6 (sent the men to track) along shore, rate per log 5 perches. S 13 E 0.46 continue tracking; cross and go on

to a point on the left. N 75 E 0.35 to the right — encamped for the night. Extremes of the Thermometer 60? to 82° cloudy; wind S.S.E. made this day 14 Miles 59 perches. Monday 22 — Thermometer before Sun rise 65? Wind S.S.E. cloudy, rain before day. Continued

N 75 E 0.20 to a point on the right. S 65 E 0.35 along shore — by log 5 perches per j4 Minute. E 1.14 to a point on the left, cloudy. N 0.30

Hoist sail

N 40 W o. 18 to a point on the left — by Log 8 perch's per j4 Minute. Wind fails

W 2.12 to a point on the right — by Log 4 perches, long reach, rain at noon, no observation. N 20 W0.35 along shore — Thermometer 79? N 40 E I. 3 to a point on the left — by Log 5

perches. N 10 Wo.19 along shore. N 45 W0.20 to a point along shore — sounded

1804 1 3 J^ fathom, black sand — extremes

October J of the thermometer 65? to 79° made

this day 13 Miles 76 perches. Tuesday 23^ Thermometer 68? before sun rise. Wind N.N.W. the river fell 3 inches in the night. N 65 Wa*! 5'along shore by log 5^ perches. N 10 W 0.50 to a point on the right. N 10 E 0.38 along shore contrary wind — by log 3 ^ perches observed O Doub: alt: 92?58'.45". In: Er: +13'. dinner 45''. 5.


N 10 E 0.50 along shore.


N30 E oh5'to the left shore, wind N.N.W. arrived at the mouth of Catahoola, West course; thermometer 75°.

N 10 E o. 8 the mouth of Washita: Bayu Tensa forks with Washita bearing N 80° E: log 5§^ perches.

N 65 Wo. 7 along shore on the right: encamped. Extremes of the thermometer 68?-75° took information at the mouth of the Catahoola which detained us iy2 hours; sounded, 6 fathoms; made this day 9 miles 77^ perches. By our reckoning the mouth of Washita is distant from the mouth of Red river 77 miles 57 perches;

Washita - 13

and by the old estimation 32 French [1804

leagues. "[October

Wednesday 24 Thermometer before sunrise 54?

Wind North, cloudy, temperature

of the river 71? no current worth

estimating. N 65 Wo"? 9'continued to the right shore — rate

of going per log 43^ perches. N 35 E 0.23 along shore.

N 0.20 ditto — high land on the right.

W0.12 ditto, by log 5 perches. Bayu Ha-ha on the right coming in f ? East. N 0.12 ditto, oblique strata of clay, some

dipping under y' horizon 30? in the

direction of the river. N 60 E 0.11 to the left shore, breakfast

N 30 E 0.27 along shore by log 5 perches

cloudy. N 45 Wo.13 ditto, river 80 yards wide.

Wo.18 to a point on the right luxuriant

vegitation, grapevines, &c in rich

dark festoons. N 30 Wo. 6 along shore. N 30 E o. 3 clearing up — wind north. N 50 E 0.19 N 0.49 landed on the right to observe O

Doub: alt: 92? 4'. 50'' In: = er: dinner +13'. 45'' land high no appearance

of overflowing, oak forest, white,

red, black, rich shrubbery. Lat:

found 31° 42' 3o'^5. continued

N 0.42 to the right shore.

continue taking all day rate per log 5 perches.

14 Washita

1804 1 ^ SS W 0*131'rich herbage along shore. October J N 40 E o.ii along shore — low and small timber, upon the high bank. N 70 E 0.17 along shore "

E 0.17 ditto N 45 E o. 5 ditto N o. 8 ditto

N 60 W0.83 ditto

Wo. 9 S 72 W0.24 to the left — a large bayu going to

S. W. called Barchelet. N 15 W0.39 made this day 14 miles 48 perches. Thursday 25 Thermometer 49? temperature of the

river 68? Wind North, cloudy, contin**

N 15 W0.20 at 12'. pine point on the left, and Villemont's prairie on the right, per Log 4 perches. N 45 E o. 3 to a point on the right — high land.

E 0.43 at 3'. bayu on the left. N 20 E 0.29 to Bayu Louis on the right, here commences the rapids. Breakfast.

N I mile so many shoals in this course

that no time or log could be kept — by estimation we went one mile and then were completely embayed, being enclosed by a bar of gravel and sand with only 8 to 12 inches of water; cloudy, no observation; This day we made only 3 miles 120 perches. Friday 26 Thermometer 40? Wind N.W. light clouds took

At loH*'- A. M. O ap, dblc alt: 82? /.lo'' In: er: + 1%'.^%" to regulate r - Oq .

the watch. I ? ^,

At II .40.45 Do 88. lo. 5 Magnetic Azim: [ ^CtODCr

S zoX E. At noon took the 0 mer: alt: (doub) 90? y/. l^' In: er: + 13^. ifl". Lat. 31? 48'. Si"•^- ^'"• mometer at 3 o'clock 70?

Saturday 27- Thermometer 32° temperature of the river 64? wind North, clear above — a fog on the river, no observation all our efforts being employed Course ^ to get through a gravelly bar un-

continued I^mile till i o'clock; the rapids continu-North J ing occasioned frequent stops so

that we could only estimate the remainder of this course at ^ of a mile; the rockey pass which completed the rapids being 200 yards from the end of this last course.

Woh5' to a point on the right—per log

4/^ perches.

N 0.38 at II a bayu on the left — a point

on the left: encamp: extremes of the thermometer 32°—73": this day made 2 miles 77 perches. Sunday 28. Thermometer 40? temperature of the river water (i'^°. wind N.W. — clear above — fog on the river. N 45 Wo.17 rate by log 4^ perches. N 0.17 at 5'. a prairie or natural meadow

on the left to a point on the left. N 15 W0.13 Bayoo Boeuf on the right at 5'.

Rockey hill on the right. N 45 W0.17 N 15 E 0.18 N 70 W0.20

1804 1 S 55 Woho'on the right—here we made the October J following observations

A. M. O doub: alt: 53° 19^. oc/''. at 9I1- e/-W. —Mag: Az: S 60 El do 58 .14 , 10 at 9I1 zo -%%. d" S 57 EJ

In:Er:+13^58, Apparent distance of the Sun and Moons nearest limbs 53° 24^. 50^^.

In: Er: + 13^ 1%''. at 9b 47/. 1%%".

Same course 0.6 on the right, tracking the boat; by log 5 perches. Wo.14 ditto. N 10 E 0.14 N 10 W0.17 Wo. 17 S 10 Wo.II To the right, landed to observe, dinner O ap: doub: alt: 88? 58^.45''. In:

er: +13'. 58". Lat: found 31? 53'.


S 10 Wo. 8

S 78 Wo. 8

S 80W0.10

N 30 W I. 8 a large prairie or savannah on the right — thermometer 78? at 3*! the plane is named " Prairie noyee."

S 45 W0.32

N 45 W 0.13 to the left.

N 80 W0.31

S 45 W0.15

S 30 E 0.16 rate by log 5^ perches.

S 82 Wo.12 to the encampment. Sounded, 3 fathom, mud and sand, made this day 12 miles 116 perches.

Note the rate of going of the watch to be ascertained from the



morning altitudes of the Sun of this day and the 26*-

In future I have determined to take down the distances by the hour and minute as first placed upon the slate or blotter, being less liable to error; the differences as above stated may be taken afterwards at leisure. Monday 29'- Thermometer 41° temperature of the river water 62? wind N.W. fog on the river. Set out at 6^22' rate per Log 5^ perches. S 32 W6.31 N 3 5 W 6.40 N 65 W7. 8

W 7.20 to the right bank. N 45 W 7.30 to the left.

N 55 E 7.48 a Creek on the left: landed and made the following observations of the distances between the nearest limbs of the sun and moon. 'At8'!57'.io''dis:4i?58\2o' ' 9. 6 .10 . . . 41.55.40 9.26.18 . . . 41.50.10 A. M. ] Took the following doub: alt: of the Sun and azimuth.

At 9': 47'. 46'' doub: alt: 68? 44^.30'' . Sun's magnetic Az: S 45? E. In: Er: the same +13'. 45''. Set off at lo*! 4'.

N 55 E 10.20 rate per log ^j4 perches. N 30 W10.31 N 15 E 10.43

1804 October

In: Er:

+ ^3'AS'

N 80 W 4.14 N 45 W 4.32 S 55 W 4.55 Wind S.W. Log 5 perches.

W 5.13 N 35 W 5.28

N 55 E 5.35 to the right encamped. Soundings 3 fathom, thermometer 62?

Note. The watch having been suffered to run down last night, the times of the altitudes of this day have consequently no connection with the former. This day made 14 miles 65 perches. Tuesday 30''' Thermometer 47? temperature of the river water 60? fog on the river wind W.N.W. clear. Set off at 6. 5

N 75 E 6M6'rate per log 5 perches. ri8o4

N 20 E 6.34 [October

N 70 W 7.10

S 50 W 7.35 lost 1'. W 7.50 Breakfast 8.47

N 10 W 9.12

N 40 E 9.25

N 82 E 9.47

N 68 W10.25

S 50 W10.55 wind W.

N 50 Wii. 7

N II.14

N 60 E 11.34 landed and took the Suns mer: doub: altitude 87? 16'. 10'' In: er: + i3'.2o''., some uncertainty attended this observation; the altitude observed may have been a minute too small, which would place the latitude Y^ minute too far north; it is however recorded with this remark latitude found 32°5'.24^ Set off at 1.20

N 50 W 2. 8 rate per log 5 perches.

N 30 E 2.35

N 45 W 2.42 wind W.

W 2.48

S 60 W 3.37 lost 9'.

N 55 W 4. 7 lost 4'. a rapid: river30 yards wide.

N 60 E 4.28

N 4-34

W 5.15 lost 14' creek on the left, perhaps

Bayu Calumet.

1804 1 N 5^5'to the left— encamped extremes

OctoberJ of the thermometer 47?-83? Made

15 miles 150 perches. Wednesday 31 Thermometer 44° river water 62?

Wind N.W. Clear. Set out at 6.30

N 45 E 6.50 strong current, rate per log reduced, 2 perches. N 20 W 6.55 S 65 W 7.46 lost 5'.

N 40 W 8.10 got upon a shoal: breakfasted. Set off 9.58

N 40 W10.44 lost 10' N 10 W11.18

N25 E11.35 per log 41^ perches: landed and took the Suns apparent: mer: double alt: 86? 27'. 10'' In: er: dinner +13'- 40'' latitude found 32? lo".

13'' at seting out got upon a bar which detained us. Set out again

at 2.00 got over the bar. N 25 E 3.00 lost 6\ per log 4 perches. N 74 W 3.10 a small plantation on the right. S 25 W 3.35 Thermometer 84?

W 3.40 .

N 5 W 4. 8

N 35 W 4.45 to a small plantation — another joining below: this day made 6 miles 165 perches. November 1 Thermometer 48? river water 62? calm Thursday i"J clear.

W j4 mile. The first part of this course could only be estimated by

the eye, as a great part of this [1804 morning was employed in getting [November over a rapid, which we effected about 12 (noon) it may be put down at half a mile. Set off after! 1, ,

,. }-2.20

dmner J continu'd W 2.33 rate by log 3 perches against a current. N 40 W 3.12 a cliff 100 feet crowned by pines, lost 14'. this course upon a shoal. N30 E 3.14

E 3.42 lost 2'. N 30 E 3.44 rate per log 4^ perches. N 15 E 3.54 Thermometer 85? N 45 E 4.36 lost 22' upon a shoal. N 25 E 4.40

W 5.24 a sand bar half way across: river 50 yards wide. N 70 W 5.44

W10.00 lost 20' on a shoal.

iih5'stoped by a shoal. ri8o4

S 10 E 11.23 went ashore & prepared to ob-\ November serve. Set out after 1.31 O ap: do: alt: 84? 18'. 40. In: dinner. er: +13'. 30''. Lat: 32? if, if.

Set out at 1.31 after dinner. S 10 E 1.38

S 60 E 1.45 towing the boat rate 5^^ perches. N 60 E 1.55 N 30 E 2. 4

N 2.17

2.32 stop upon a shoal. N 20 W 2.45

N 3. 5 lost 3'. thermometer 86°.

N 45 W 3.25 lost 10'. rate per log 4^ perches.

S 65 W 3.57 lost 14'. upon a shoal.

N 45 W 4. 3

N 20 E 4.20 lost 8'. — towing, rate per log 5J^

perches. N 45 E 4.35 current — rate 4 perches.

N 5. 5 lost 9'.

N 45 E 5.15 encamped on the left, Thermometer at 8!" p. m. 72° made this day II miles 140 perches. Sunday 4'!' Thermometer 54? river water 64? clear. Set off at 9.18 got aground in the morning. N 45 E 9.26 rate per log 4 perches. N 25 E 9.36 N 20 W 9.44

N 45 W10.26 lost 16'' upon a shoal. S 75 W10.50 lost 3'. N 65 Wii.oo

N 50 W11.29 landed and observed the O ap: mer: alt: double 83° t^^' ' AS"-

1804 1 In: er: 13'. 32''. Lat: 32? 21'.

November J 10".

Set out at i!'36'

N 20 W 3.25 lost 57' upon a shoal rate per log 2 perches. Same course

N 20 W 4.00 lost 12' got out the tow line to

track; per log 5 Yz perches. N 20 E y2 mile this course being over

shoals and rapids could only be estimated by sight made this day 4 miles 233 perches. Monday 5'" Thermometer 52? river water 62? heavy fog, had to unload two turns of our canoe to get over a shoal. Set off at 9.55 Last course

Conf* 10. 4 rate per log 5 perches.

N 20 W11.15 N 45 Wi1.21 lost 3'.

W11.32 dark misty and cloudy.

N 45 W12.00 lost 5'.

N 45 E 12.13 N 25 E 12.42 lost 1'. N 45 E 1.34 lost 10'. N 10 W 1.43 wind N.W. dined. Set off at 3.00

N 75 W 3.12 rate per log 6 perches. S 50 W n^.t^c^ Thermometer 68° Sun shines dimley through a blackish mist.

W 4. 2

N 60 W 4.25 lost 1'. N 30 W 4.39 N 4.55

N35W5':8' ri8o4

N 15 W 5.25 encamped on a sand bar on the [November

right made this day 11 miles 276

perches. Tuesday 6*- Thermometer 45? river water 64? heavy

fog, wind west.

1804 1 made this day 9 miles 257 perches

Novemberj amounting in the whole from the

mouth of Red river 196 miles and 256 perches. Wednesday y'- Took the O ap: mer: doub: alt: 81° 28^.00'' In: er:+13'. 33''.5 latitude found 32? 29'. 52''. 5. The place where the observation was made is about 450 feet to the south of the post where Lieut: Bowman and his garrison are stationed, the latitude of the post is therefore 32? 29'. 57". 8*" & 9'" Both cloudy days remained at the post. 9*•^ Thermometer 42°-72° river 61°. Saturday lo*- Thermometer 40? made the following observations.

by cal.


r loi'o'. I ?''�'. 0 ap. dble ^ found

A M J ^°^*''^"™^'^^'^^3°-5'-5°'^®™^6!AzS 46E I In: er: io°.9^

I lo.ia.is 65.56.53 S 43 E r+i3''.47''''.5 10.8

I10.16.12 66.50.34 S 42 eJ 10 .8

O Ap: mer: dble: Alt: 79? 45'. 3" In: er+ 13'. 47'^5 Lat: found 32°

There is a difference of I'j". between the Lat: found this day and on the 7'!" I give the preference to the observation of this day, because on the 7'.'' some interruption from visitants occasioned a moments inattention and it is believed the Sun might have dipped a little before the altitude was taken.

O triple contact as follows J'1804

r ^°^" "'"'»" 3-1-6 -j 0 ,p J D J Alt: 49°. 15/. 30^'. t November

P M. < Center 3-a-5° ^ t _i_ / //

Upper Ibnb 3%_^6rin:er:+i3'.47-.S

Note the center contact was uncertain from intervening branches. Distances between the Sun and moons nearest limb are as follows.

not to be considered as so perfect as similar contacts of the Sun, on account of the pale light of her disk in the presence of the Sun, the illuminated part being also but a small proportion of the whole disk, the following mer: alt: of the moon taken in the evening was very correct . . . C ap: mer: dble: alt: 89?i7'. 2o''In:er: +13'. 47". 5, these were taken, because the (L moon's alt: could not be taken at the same instants with the distances between the Sun and moon's limbs

1804 "1 and may be used or not as a check

Novemberj at the pleasure of the calculator.

Distances of the moons west limb from a arietis

At 7^ 42'.57'" Distance 719 45^.00''''"|

7.51.27 71.42.15 lln:er:-i3'47>^'^

7 .59 -38 71 .38 -55 J

Sunday iV^ Thermometer 24° At the post of Washita took the sun's ap: mer: dble: alt: 79° 12' y" In: er: + 13'. S^^'-S Lat: 32° 29'3o''.5. Set out at 3^54'from the post of Washita.

N 45 W 4.30 lost 2'; per log 8 perches per }i minute.

N 30 W 4.55 to Baron Bastrop's plantation; encamped, made this afternoon 3 miles. The meridian observations of this day and yesterday for the Lat: being in my opinion both as good as the instrument admits, I take the mean of the two for the truth, and as the distance of the post from the place of observation is 450 feet North, I consider the true latitude of the post as fixed at 32 29' 37". 8. Monday 12^'' Thermometer in air 2^° i" river water

54? clear, calm. Sett off at 8.26 took in some fresh beef &c.

N 55 E 8.35 rate per log 8 perches.

N 8.39

N 60 W 9.15 lost 24' upon shoals.

N 10 W 9.20

N 25 E 9.40

N 9!'46'Bayu Siard on the right computed J'1804

2 leagues from the Fort. ]^ November

N 70 W10.15 river 100 yards wide.

N 30 W10.23 at lol'^o' Bayu d'Arbonne, enter a narrow passage to the left which contains the whole river, being shut up on the right except during freshes: the course of the old river upwards is east: and the new channel with high banks is from 30 to 40 yards wide.

N 30 E 10.25

N 60 E 10.31 E 10.33

S 45 E 10.45 ^^ i*^'39 return to the great river.

N 60 E 10.55

N 30 E 11.20

E 11.50 landed to observe O mer: ap: dble: alt: 78° 28' 52'' In: er: +13' 31'' Latitude 32° 34' 47".

at 2.30 a rapid — 2.45 another

rapid and shoal. S 70 W 3.17 lost 5' upon a shoal. Stoped untill 4.27 upon a shoal.

N 50 W 5.30 lost 25' encamped; thermometer

at 8*" p.m. 54? made this day 16

miles 32 perches.


1804 1 Tuesday 13'? Thermometer in air 23° in river water November J ^^° — fog — calm.

Set off at 6^51'per log 8 perches. Continued

N 50 W 6.55

N 7. 2

E 7.23

N 45 E 7.40

N 45 W 7.44

S 85 W 8.00

S 55 W 8.40 lost 10'. at 8*" 10' an Island; at 8'' 12' a strong rapid landed to breakfast. Set off at 9.42 9 computed leagues from the post: an Island on the right rocks called Roque rau.

N 9.46 rate per log 7 perches.

N 45 E 9.53 wind south.

N 45 W10.31 river 150 yards wide — banks about 25 feet high.

N II.10 lost 17' on shoals — at ii*" 3'

gravelly rapids and a house on the right. Otter Bayou on the left at the end of the course: an Island at the mouth of the Bayou.

S 70 E 11.30 lost 12' the river has a more spacious appearance than below.

N 80 E 11.55 Two settlements at the end of the course on the right called * Ecor aux Noyers' 30 feet bank, 4 feet clear at high water. Some Cypress grows along the bank.

N 30 E 12.10

N 70 E 12.30 at 12'' 26° a house on the right.

N 10 E 12^.26'a. shower of rain — landed to dine. ri8o4 Set off at 3. 3 Thermometer 66°. [November


N 10 E 3.17 rate per log 8 perches. N 35 E 3.30 N 15 E 3.50

N 40 E 4.00 a 3.54 Bayu Bartelemi 12 computed leagues from the post. N 55 W 4.11 rate per log 6j4 perches. S 75 W 4.25 lost 8'. N 45 W 4.27 N 25 E 4.29 N 65 E 4.38 E 4.46

N 30 E 4.51 N 20 W 5.00

N 60 W 5.10 Bayou Pawpa. N 20 W 5.20 encamped on the right, made this day 16 miles 312 perches. At 8'' p.m. Thermometer in air 62°. Wednesday 14^-^ Thermometer in air 44° in river

water 55° clear, calm. Set off at 7. 6 rate per log 554! perches. N 20 W 7.24 Bayu Mercier on the left. N 10 E 7.50 lost 2'. *N 10 W 8.12 landed to repair the rudder irons & to breakfast. Set off 10.24


* On our return we landed 37 perches below the end of this course i. e. at 8^ Sy^' on the 15^'' January 1805 and took the Sun's alt: to correct the time of the watch, at 10^ 56' 24" a.m. ap: alt: O 1.1. 66° 36' 45" In: er: + 12' 20''.

1804 1 N 10 Wiol'35Vmd N.W.

November]' N 40 W11.19 at 11.3 * Bayu Buttes ' (mount

Creek). N II.21

N 65 E 11.25 ^^^^ P^^ ^°g ^ perches. N 11.30

N 70 W11.40 landed to observe O ap: mer:dble: alt: 76° 54' 25" I^= er: + 13' 47'\5. latitude found32° 50' %".S'

S 70 W 4.26 N 60 W 4.28 N 4.29

N50 E 4!'33' ri8o4

N 20 W 4.35 j^ November

N 45 W 4.39

N 4.42

N 45 E 4.44

S 85 E 4.50

N 15 E 4.53

N 60 W 4.55

N 80 W 4.58

N 40 W 5. 2 *N 40 E 5. 6

N 80 E 5.10 Wind west — river ^S to 40 yards wide.

N 5.13

N 30 W 5.17 Encamped on the left, made this day 12 miles 303 perches. Thursday 15^'' Thermometer in air ^3° in river water 55° hoar frost—some clouds. Set off at 9.14 Continued

N 30 W 9.35 rate per log 7^ per:

N 10 W 9.42

N 40 W 9.50

N 10. 3

N 50 Wio.io

S 70 W10.24 lost 8'.

N IO-53 lost 5' a rapid.

N 70 E 11.00 Bank low overflows 20 feet perpendicular.

N 20 E II. 4

N 20 Wii. 7

* On our return down the Washita, on the 14^^ January 1805 we observed an Eclipse of the moon at this place, from whence the longitude was deduced.

1804 1 N45 Wiii-ij'

November J N 30 E 11.24 No more long moss (Tilansia)

seen above this.

N 45 E 11.35 at 11" 33' 'Isle de Mallet' — landed to observe and placed the Instrument on the left shore 90 yards higher than the point of the Island: O ap: dble: mer: alt: 76° 5'28'' In: er: +13'. 30'' Latitude found 32? 59' 27''.5. The division line between the Territory of Orleans and that of Louisiana will traverse the river 321^'' of a degree north of the place of observation, and may be found at any time by following the above remarks respecting the situation of the N.E. end of the Island of Mallet. Set off after dinner at 1.28

N 10 W 1.46

N35 E 1.55

N 25 W 1.58

N 30 W 2.10 rate per log 7 perches.

N 80 W 2.17

N 25 W 2.30

^^ , ,^^ ''^^ '^ sand beaches (* les trois bat-

N 60 w 2.42 y i ,s

^ I tures ). N 10 W 2.51 J

W 3.13

S 45 W 3.24 Thermometer 60°.

W 2-33 rate per log 8 perches * Bayu grand

marais' on the left.

S 80 W 3!'24' ri8o4

S 25 E 3.34 [November

S 60 W 3.39

w 3.54

N 20 E 4.00 N 45 E 4.14

N 20 W 4.23 the 3 pine trees. N 55 W 4.46 lost 8'. N 4.50

W 4.52 S 4.54 encamped: Thermometer at 8*"

p.m. 42° extremes 38! 51? made this day 17 miles 185 perches. Saturday 17- Thermometer in air 40? in river water 54° fog on the river, calm, river rose 1'% inches in the night. Set off at 7.19 Course continued

S 7.23 rate per log 6 perches.

S 75 E 7.27 N 7.40

W 7.42 S 45 W 7.55 N 45 W 8.00 N 20 E 8. 9 N 60 E 8.17 N 30 W 8.18 N 80 W 8.27 N 20 W 8.30 N 5 W 8.56

W 8.58 *marais de Cannes' (cane marsh) on the right. Breakfast 10. 7

S 15 W10.23 rate per log 7 perches.

1804 "1 S 65 Wio^42'long leaf-pine. Novemberj N 45 W 10.49 saw the first swan, shot by one of

the hunters. W10.52 S 45 Wii. I pirsimmons and small black grapes. N 45 Wii. 18 S 75 Wii. 25 small cane — Sun breaks out —


N 55 Wii. 30 no long moss (tilandsia) seen since

we entered the low alluvial lands.

N 11.42 landed to observe. O mer: ap:

dble: altitude 74° 37' 52'' In: er:

33° 13'i6".5-

N 4^4/ ri8o4

N 70 W 4.53 I November

W 5. 7 Thermometer at S^ p.m. 44° extremes 4o°-5i° made this day 15 miles 308 perches. Sunday 18- Thermometer in air 32? in river water 52° serene — calm, — river rises a little. Set out at 7.20 Continued

W 7.23 rate per log j}4 perches. S 20 W 7.34

S 80 W 7.49 lost 3' by the rapid, at 7.41 an Island and passage round to the right, the old channel shut up by a sand bar; the whole river runs through the narrow channel of about 70 feet wide.

1804 1 N 40 Wio^52'

November J N lO Wii. 7


S 25 Wi 1.20 lost 3'by a rapid.

S 60 Wii. 25

N 80 W11.30

N 50 Wii. 41 landed to observe, O ap: mer: dble:alt:74 i'25'' In:er:+i3'. 50'' latitude found 23° 17' 33'^' Dinner 1.33

S 75 W 1.46 rate per log j}4 perches.




5^05'encamped Thermometer at 8''j'i8o4

p.m. 57° in air, cloudy, made this |November day 18 miles 75 perches. Monday 19, Thermometer in air 54? in river water 54? cloudy, calm, river at a stand.

rate per log 'jyi perches.

Bayu de Hachis on the left.

points of high land touch the river at various places — the valley about a league broad on each side.

N47 N


N 70 E 7.58 8.17 8.25 8.26 S 55 W 8.37 N 80 W 8.40 N 50 W 8.45 N 50 E 8.52 N 30 E 8.53 [o. 6



N 30 E 10.15 N 30 W10.28 S 25 W10.42

S 80 W 4^42' ri8o4

N 35 W 4.45 Cabane Champignole. |November

N 60 W 4.52 rain.

N 10 W 4.55 encamped, Thermometer at S"! p.m. made this day 18 miles 120 perches. Tuesday 20*1' Thermometer in air 59° in river water

54° cloudy, calm. Set off at 6.48

North 6.^6 rate per log yj4 perches.

West 6.58

S 40 W 7. 4

S 60 W 7.17

N 55 W 7.30

N 20 W 7.39 a deep creek on the left called Chemin couvert.

N 7.48

N 50 W 7.52

S 75 W 7.56

S 10 W 8. 4

S 75 W 8.13 a rapid, and gravel beach, water 40 yards wide.

N 60 W 8.20

N 20 W 8.37 a narrow passage to the left 60 feet wide a small narrow Island.

N 45 W 8.44

N 25 W 8.50

N 25 E 9. 4

N 30 W 9.20 lost 10'.

N 55 W 9.32 Breakfast 10.50

S 80 W11. 7 rate per log y}i perches.

N 75 W11.14

N 45 W11.23

Wednesday 21" Thermometer in air 43?, in river water J1804

54°, fog, calm. j November

Set off at 7^ y. Course continued.

S 85 W 7.15 rate per log 7 perches. N 35 W 7.17 Fin's hill a cHfF 100 feet perpendicular.

N 45 W 5^ 9'encamped on the right: made 18 ri8o4

miles 2^ perches: thermometer at [November-8 p.m. 58! extremes 43°-72°. Thursday 22- Thermometer in air 40° in river water S3- light clouds — calm, set off at


7.15 rate per log 6j4 perches.

S 80 W10.16

N 85 W10.21

S 70 W10.25

S ^'^•33 ^t 10.28 the Cadaux or Cadodoquis

path crosses the river leading to the Arcansas. W10.48 at 10.43 * Ecor a Fabri' (Fabri's cliffs) 80 to 100 feet high lead said to be buried on the ridge by Fabri in the direction of the french and Spanish line.


1804 1


N 60 W

N40 W N

N45 S 80

N45 N

N 30

N 70

N 25


N 65

N 20

N 10


N75 S 85









N45 W N 10 W N30 W Dinner N

E S S 45 E

E N40 W N 15 W N45 W


S 45 W S 15 E




11. 8 lost 7' — 40 yards wide. 10.20


11.23 11.25 11.31

11.36 11.41

11.43 11.45

11.56 cloudy, no observation.

12. 2

12.17 lost 8^ at 12.15 * petit ecor a Fa-

bri' (small clifF of Fabri) 12.20 12.26 12.31


2.37 2.44

2.45 a rapid.




3. 8 3.10

3.13 river 30 yards wide only here, enclosed by bars &c. 3.16 3.20

s 45 w 3^23' ri8o4

^^ .^27 [November

S 70 W 3.28

N 75 W 3.31

N 20 W 3.34

N 26 E 2.^6 lost 9'.

N 60 E 4. 6

N 20 E 4. 8

N 5 W 4.11

N 50 W 4.15

W 4.18 rapids. S 50 W 4.25 d? ' N 60 W 4.53 lost 18' strong rapids and shoals. N 10 E 5.00 encamped made this day 14 miles

317 perches thermometer at 8

p.m. 54 extremes 40? 68°. Friday 23*^ Thermometer in air 48? in river water 54?

light clouds — calm: river on the

fall. Set off at 7. 4

N 15 W 7. 8 rate per log 6 perches.

W 7.11 N 55 W 7.13 N 25 W 7.15

N 10 W 7.34 lost 5'. rapids. N45 E 7.39

N 7-43

N 60 W 7.47

W 7.53 S 45 W 8. 2 lost 2'. rapids.

W 8. 5 N 60 W 8. 8

N 20 W 8.26 lost 2' on rapids. N 45 W 8.28 lost i'.

JO Washita

1804 1 N 35 Wio^ o' November J N 10-3

N 40 E 10.56 lost 30' long and strong rapids. N 70 E 11.20 lost 18' ditto.

E 11.27 S 45 E 11.30 S 15 E 11.39 lost 1'.

S 45 E 11.48 lost 3'. a deserted corn patch. N 15 E 12. 8 cloudy, no observation. N 41 W12.18 osiers or hoop willows. N 65 W12.25

W12.34 Bayu Tallien on the left.

N 60 E 5h3'encamped — thermometer at 8*! J1804

p.m. 59°. [November

made 11 miles 152 perches. Sunday 25- confined all day to camp by the bad state of the weather, raining great part of the day. Extremes of the thermometer 54° to 70° and at S*" p.m. 61° Monday 26*'' Thermometer in air 50° in river water 57° — clear — calm — river risen 3 ^ inches during the night. Set off at 7. 7

N 40 E 7.52 lost 30' rate per log 6yi perches.

N 8. 5 white maple.

N 45 W 8.13 lost 1'.

N 20 W 8.25 Bear's head camp.

N 60 W 8.30

N 80 W 8.38 cane land.

S 35 W 8.42

S 75 W 8.47

W 8.58 lost i\ N 30 W 9.11 N35 E 9.15 Breakfast 10. 8

E 10.15 lost 8^* N 10.20

W10.24 N 40 W10.39 lost 6'. N 10.50

N 80 E 10.53 lost i'. N 11'03

N 45 Wi 1.24 lost 2'—'Petite-Cote' — anisland. N 11.27

N 22 E 11.33

1804 ]^ N 73 E 11^41^ November J N 35 E 11.46

N 85 E 11.50 landed to observe— O ap: mer: dble: alt: 69° 23' 52'' In: er: + 13' 38'' Latitude found;i2° 54' 6^5. Dinner 1.47


N 85 E 1.50 N 38 E 1.57 lost 4'. N 20 E 2. 3 N 85 W 2.15 N 70 W 2.20

N 45 W 2.29 many Islands. N 25 W 2.52 lost i6\ N 70 E 3. o N 25 W 3.15 lost 9'. N 65 W 3.28

N 50 W ^.22 at 3.31 * Bayu de Cypre* on the left, birch and osier.

N 340

E 3.46 lost 5'.

N 30 E 3.15 lost 4^

N 55 E 4.40 lost 38\ cut away some logs.

N 20 W 4.47

N 75 W 4.52

S 6s W 4.55

S 5. I Encamped — Thermometer at 8

p.m. 62°—extremes 50°-68° made

12 miles 21 perches. Tuesday 27- Thermometer in air 54°— in riverwater

58°—cloudy — river risen above

a foot. Set off at 7. I



S 80 W

N 70 W N45 W N 10 W N 20 E N 80 E N40 E N30 W N 70 W S 70 W N 50 W N

N30 W Breakfast


S 30 w


N45 w N 10 W N45 W S 70 W S 30 w N 70 W N 40 W N

N45 E N 25 E N 40 E N

N45 E N 25 E N N 36 W

7"? 11'rate per log 6}i perches.

7.17 7.21


7.38 rapids commence.

7.46 lost 6'.


8. o

8. 9 lost 7' Piraugue a Gallien.

8.15 lost 3' left the rapids.


8.33 8.48



1 November

river rises i}i inch during the hour.

lost 2'.

9'S5 10.10











11.29 lost 8' a large Island to the left




11.46 11.52


cloudy — no observation.

at 12'' ' Cache a Ma9on ' and bayu

1804 1 on the right: about ij4 mile

NovemberJ N.N.W. explored the banks of

a creek in search of a coal mine and found only some fragments of carbonated wood; river risen 4 inches in 2 hours. Dinner 2h5'

N 60 W 3. o rate per log 6}4 perches.

W 3.25 lost 17'. N 45 W 3.34 N 3.40

N 45 W 4. o lost 6' river 150 yards wide. N 70 W 4. 9

W 4.23 lost y\ N 70 W 4.32 lost 6\ N 45 W 4.49 N 85 W 4.52

N 70 W 5. o encamped thermometer @ S'^prm. 66° extremes 54°-71° made this day 13 miles 39 perches. Wednesday 28':''Thermometer in air 68° — in river water 60° — river fallen 4 inches in the night — cloudy — calm, p Set off at 7. 5

S 65 W 7.13 rate per log 6^ perches. S 80 W 7.22

S 65 W 7.29 *Ecor aux poux de bois.' N 60 W 7.37


1804 1 57° went to visit a saline, made

November J y miles 28 perches.

December i"

Saturday Thermometer in air 32° — river water 54** — clear — calm — river fallen 18 inches during the night. Set off at 7^ 5' * Isle de roches ' (rocky island) ^ mile long on the right. N 35 E 7.23 lost 10'—rate per log 6 perches. N 75 E 7.31 lost 5'. S 70 E 7.42 lost 6'. N 65 E 7.52 N 45 E 8. o N 32 E 8.10 N 15 E 8.34 lost 13'. Breakfast 10.12 N 55 E 10.18 S 80 E 11.10 lost 20'. N 15 E 11.25 ^ost 11'.

N 10 W12. 5 lost 35' on the rapids: no observation. N 45 E 12.15 *Bayu de I'isle de Mellon' on the right. E 12.27 Dinner 2.29

E 2.44 S 45 E 2.53 lost 4'. N 45 E 2.56

N 2-3^ ^ost 11' at 3*1 30' a saline distant

2 miles to the left, and Isle de mellon on the right. N 10 W 4.37 lost 38' encamped—made 7 miles 148 perches — Thermometer at S^. p.m. 35° extremes 32^-5 8°.

Sunday 2^. Thermometer in air 30" in river water 50° ri8o4

clear — calm — river fallen 4 inch. \ December Set off at 7^35'

N 10 W 7.44 rate per log 3 perches rapids commence.

N 45 E 7.50

N75 E 7.55

S 30 E 8. 4

S 80 E 8.13

N 40 E 8.29

S 80 E 8.32

N 55 E 8.37

N 42 E 8.40 rapids end. Breakfast 10.7

N 42 E 10.35 ^^^^ P^^ ^og 5 perches.

N 28 E 10.51

N 15 E 10.58

N 8 Wii. o

N 12 Wii. 12

N 10 W11.43 lost 15'' rate per log 3 perches.

N 20 E 11.46 rate per log 5 perches. Dinner 2. 3

N 20 E 2.30 at 2*?19' slate quarry on the left and a Creek.

N 55 E 2.23 ^Isle de Chevreuil' (Deer island).

N 40 E 2.39 lost 3' — Free stone and blue slate to the left.

N 5 W 3.11 strong rapids rate per log 3 perches — Bayu de prairie de Cham-pignole on the left.

N 32 E 3.28 Thermometer 59° —

N 45 E 3.46

S 85 E 3.51 lost 11', rate per log ^j4 perches.

N 53 E 4. 7 Encamped: — made 6 miles 118

1804 1 perches—Thermometer at 8^ p.m.

December J 38° extremes 30°-^g°.

Monday 3^ Thermometer in air 38° in river water 48" — clear — calm — river fallen 8 inches. setofFat 7^2'

N 35 W 7.20 rate per log 5 perches. N 20 W 7.31 N 10 E 8. 4 lost 8^

N 30 W 8.26 ' Bayu de I'eau froide' on the left. N 30 E 8.45 lost 3'. breakfast 9.50

S 70 E 10. 8 rapid; rate 3 perches:

N 75 E 10.20

N 10.40

N 10 E II. 4 lost 18'. rate per log 6 perches.

S 15 E 11.28 rapids 3 perches per log.

E 11.40 rate per log 5 perches, landed to

flint, on the right with masses in ^1804 the river. [December

N 30 W 4h8'arrived at the *Chuttes* passed over and encamped, river 200 yards wide, made 7 miles 218 perches — Thermometer at 8'' p.m. 44° extremes 38°-59? Tuesday 4'!" Thermometer in air ^6° in river water 48° clear — calm — river fallen 2 inches, set oflfat 7.21

N 45 W 7.34 rate per log 4 perches.

N25 W 8.15 at 8'' passed a ledge of hard free stone rocks — rocky bottom, high rocky hill in front covered by pines a fine situation 350 feet high.

N 60 W 8.25

W 8.33

Breakfast 9.59

Wio. 9 rate per log 2 perches.

N 45 Wio. 12 rate per log 4 perches.

N 20 W10.15

N 20 E 10.24 at 10.20 bald hill on the left — arrive at the rapids.

N 50 E j4 rnile: a very violent rapid,

landed to observe O ap: mer: dble alt: 65° 47' 4'' In: er: + 13' 44" latitude found 34° 25' 48''. Dinner 1.45 rocky pine hill 300 feet high on

the right.

N 20 W 1,52 rate 5 perches.

N 60 W 1.55

1804 1 N 85 W 2^ 3'rate per log 6 perches: hills of blue DecemberJ slate (or shistus) to the left.

S 80 W 2.17 N 40 W 72 perches — violent rapid, long

detention. S 80 W 112 perches — encamped — * Bayu

de la Saline' on the right, made 4 miles 164 perches—Thermometer at S^ p.m. 2^° extremes 36°-

Wednesday 5\^ Thermometer in air 23? in river water 47°— serene — calm—river fallen 2 inches. Set off at 7.25

S 70 W 8. 2 lost 25'—rocky hills on both sides

— rate per log 5 perches. S 55 W 30 perches — a violent rapid or

cascade 4^ feet fall in 80 yards. Breakfast 10.57

S 70 WI I.I 5 rate per log 6 perches.

W11.20 N 50 W11.29

N 40 W 144 perches, a strong rapid.—

rocky hills on the right — high freshes 25 feet perpendicular above the present level of the river, at the end of this reach on the right a creek, called * Fourche a Tigre ' (Tiger Creek) good land upon this Creek. Set off at 1.45

S 80 W 1.55 rate per log 4 perches. Dinner 3-50


N 70 W 4^23 'rate per log 3 perches. ri8o4

N 45 W % mile. 1 December

Set off at 4.54

N 45 W 4.59 rate per log 3 perches.

S 45 W 5. I Encamped made only 3 miles 128 perches. Thermometer at 8^ p.m. 38? extremes 23°-56? Thursday 6*? Thermometer in air 45? in river water 48? cloudy — wind S.W. light— river fallen 2 inches. Set off at 7.40

S 45 W 7.52 rate 4 perches.

S 30 W 8. 7 hills to the left, good land to the right.

S 55 W 8.20 lost 4'.

N 80 W 8.37 lost 12'.

N 30 W 8.52 lost 1'. Breakfast

N 20 W ^ a Mile: a great rapid, very pre-

cipitous: 3 hours in getting over. Set off at 1.8

S 75 W 1.16 rate per log 5 perches, arrived at Ellis' camp a little below the * Fourche a Calfat', encamped made 2 miles and 32 perches, thermometer at 8*" p.m. 56? extremes 45°-67°.

S 25 W the course up the river, Calfat's

mouth yi a mile upon the left.


Friday 7- Thermometer in air 38? in river water 47? cloudy, wind N.W. river risen 4

Hot Springs

1804 1


inches. Took the Suns ap: mer: dblealt: 64° 59' 47'' Inter: + 14' 5'^ latitude found 34° 27' 31''

Thermometer at 3' p.m. 24?

p.m. 50? at 8'

Saturday 8*'' At Ellis' Camp. Thermometer before sunrise 10° — river water 43° — very serene — light wind N.W. river risen 4 inches. Took the Sun's meridian ap: dble alt 64° 46'58'' In:er:+i4' 19'' latitude found 34° 27' 27'' being a difference of 4'' from the result of yesterday: if we should not make any more observations here for the latitude it may be considered as fixed at34° 27'29''. Thermometer at 3^ p.m. 47? at 8^ 26?


Having determined to ascertain the latitude and longitude of this place with all due care and attention, the following series of observations was Instituted for the latitude, using alternately the face of the Circle of reflection to the east and to the west, and reading off the angle from the three arms of the Index; but finding the Index error lyable to change daily, I found it preferable to calculate each days latitude independently by itself, to that of taking the means of several days altitudes, more especially as we were approaching the Solstice; but I have preserved the results of the same face of the Instrument as one series, and taken the mean of the two series for the true Latitude.

Hot Springs


Face of the Circle to the East.

DecL IS***: Ap: mer:

dble alt: O lower limb. 1" Index 63-35'- <:/' In: er: +15^-48'''' xd D?. 63-34-30 . . . 16-13


ri8o4 1 December

Means 63-34 -45

16- o.5-34°3o-s6.''8




3d Index under the handle could not apply the Microscope. l« Index 63-25-10 . . . 15-48

ad Do 63-24 -40 Means 63-24-55

ist Index 63-23 -50 2 d Do 20

Means 63-23 -35

1 St Index 63-34 -50

2 d Do 20

Means 63-34 -35

16 -13

16 - 0.5 34-30 -58. X

15 -26.6 15 -51.6

15-39-1 34-30-58-75

13-33.6 H- 3-6 13-48.6 34-30-54

Mean Latitude of the above 34-30 -56.94

Face of the Circle to the West.

Cabin at the hot springs true Latitude

34-30 -59.82

Note the Index error was every day taken from a double contact of the Sun with his image immediately after the observation: When the error was additive

1804 \ it was found by subtracting the O diameter from the December J greater contact and when subtractive the lesser contact was subtracted from the diameter, but in practize the greater or lesser contact was added to the ap: dole alt: to save trouble, as explained in the beginning.

Courses taken from the hill west of the hot springs on the 13'" of December 1804 with computed distances. i*.^ Station.

N 54 E ^ mile to the Cabin.

S 61 E 6 miles to the river Camp.

S 2^ E6d"to the mouth of Hot spring fork.

S 18 E 6 do to the mouth of Luke fork (west

side of the river Washita. S 10 W 9 do .. to . . do of Mont-cerne (west

side) — S 16^ W 11 do to the top of Mont-cerne. S 76 W"ii/^ mile to the Source of the Hot

spring creek. S 76 E 3 miles to a hill in the fork of Calfat

creek. N 32 E Course of the ridge looking back. S 60 W to 2^ station being about a mile in a direct line making a Cord to the arched form of the ridge.— Courses from 2*^ Station. S II W to Mount-Cerne. N 64 W to the passage of the river between the

hills about 12 miles distant. S3 W to the mouth of Bayu-Mont-cerne: j4 mile S.E. a great rapid or Cascade below the mouth of Bayu Mont cerne.

Hot Springs


S 48 E to the mouth of Hot-spring creek. S 72 E to the River Camp. N 50 miles, ridge of hills of the Arcansa.

S.E. 50 miles a level of great extent, supposed

to be the prairies of the Red-river. Sunday 16 Took the Sun's magnetic azimuth before and after noon with the same altitude.

A.m. at 9''- 50'-!9'' O lower limb dble alt: 47°


mag: az: S 42° 20' E d°. S 2$° 40 W

difference 16- 40 Var. E>^dif-8-20

1804 December

p.m. time missed

Correction for change of declination. + . .7'' Equal altitudes O ap: dble alt: 54° 27' In: er: +

Contact upper limb at 10'' 18^-59' Center 21 -^6 1-A.M.

lower limb 24 -59

lower Hmb at 1-42 -12 Center 1-45 -15 !-P.M.

upper limb 1-48 -12 Took the following distances of the D's east limb from a Arietis.

Times Distances

Index error — 16' 16"

The above may be commodiously divided into 3 Sets or otherwise at the pleasure of the calculator.

A.M. Watch supposed to have gained 45'.

70 Hot Springs

1804 1 Monday 17^^

December/ Equal Altitudes

O ap: dblc alt: 45° 49/. o ''' In: err: + 15' 48'''' f Magnetic az: S 44" 3c/ E

Upper limb at 9b ^'.$6^^^ "1 1 with the Sun's lower limb

Center 9.47.12 }• A.M. La.M.

Lower limb 9 .49 .30 J

Lower limb 2 .27 .57^ "1

Center 2.30.13 >-P.M.

Upper limb 2 .32 .31 J

These equal altitudes together with those of the preceeding day will correct the watch and ascertain her rate of going, from which the apparent times of the Lunar distances will be precisely known.

ay 23 £q^^j Altitudes

Oap: dSle alt: 4.f 4.2^1 s" In: err: + i^'ij''. Upper limb at 10'' 8' 1' Center 10.10.13

Lower limb 10.12.25 The contacts P.M. lost by the intervention of clouds.

Altitudes of the Sun's lower limb with Magnet: azim:

At io''24'i2''Alt: 46°3i' 5'' Azim: S 43°E. 10.28.57 47.35.40 S 42 E.

Ind: err:+ 15.27.

Monday 24'.''

Equal Altitudes

O ap:dble alt: 43*32'47'' Ind: err:+ I5'4i''6

Upper limb at io''i2'33^'

Center 10 14 43

Lower limb 10 16 55

Clouds intervened in the afternoon

Wednesday 26'?'

Set the watch back one hour to correspond nearly

with the present time, no alteration being made in

minutes & seconds.

U. M.

Equal Altitudes J1804

O ap: dble alt: 32*43'.2 5'' Ind: err: + 15'27" |December Upper limb at 8^ 40 . 51^'


Center 8 .41 .^6^4

Lower limb 8 .43 .45

Clouds intervened in the afternoon. The last observations having been made when the Sun was barely clear of the vapor of the hot springs, I give the preference to the following observation made for the Correction of the Chronometer & for ascertaining the magnetic variation.

At 9^ 6' 50" ap: dble alt: O low! limb 39° 16'40'' Magnet: azim: S 49° E Ind: err: + 15'.27''.

Lunar observations on the astronomical 25"" Decem' took the following distances of the O and D's limbs

Times Distances Dble alt Q lowr. limb by Dor. Hunter

At 22h t,'.'Lf)" s8°i4^.c/' In: er:-i5''27^''

22. 8 . 5 58.13 .0

22.11 .10 58.12.0 53057^.30'''Ind: err: -i''22''''. 5

22.19 • ° 58.10 .0 55-2^7 -lo

22.22 .5 58. 9 .0

22.25 .0 58. 8 .0

22.39 -7 5^-4 -o

22.42 . o 58. 3 .0

22.44.35 58. 2 .0 59.12.10

22.48 .40 58. I .0 59-43 -15

22.54 .37 57-59 -o 60.25 -^o

22.57 .47 57.58 .0 60.46 .20

Survey of the hot-spring Hill.

i^t Station or place of Commencement on the west bank of the Creek opposite to the first or highest mass of Calcareous matter; Courses taken at this Station: N 40° E up the Valley adjoining the hot-spring hill; and N 15° W the course of the Creek upwards: Thence

1804 1 S 20° E 18 perches to the bank of the Creek on Decemberj the same side.

At 8 per: opposite to the middle of the Natural hot-bed over the Creek, a small hot-spring at its commencement. At 14 per: a hot-spring N? 3 opposite side of the Creek.

S 25 W 14 per: to the hot-spring N?4 six feet to the left in the side of the bank of the Creek. At 2 per: hot-spring N? i opposite side of the Creek: at 12 per: hot-spring N? 2. over the Creek distant 4 perches.

S 3 E 34 per: nearly parallel to the Creek.

At 7 per: the Center of the Cabin on the right hand, and spring N? 5 in the gravel over the Creek: at 20 per: several small springs over the Creek: at 22 per: the lowest hot-spring N? 6. — All the forgoing Courses have been nearly parallel to the Creek, the continuation of which is S 13° E.

S 42 E 20 per: immediately cross the Creek, and at 4 per: the lowest calcareous mass.

N 60 E 106 per: At 60 per: the valley on the right distant 20 per:

S 66 E 30 per: to the Valley base of the hill: at 20 p. yellowish schistus.

N 60 E 60 per: N.E. corner of the base of the hill.

N 23 E 174 per: — 60 per: to the left the ridge is parallel to the Course.

N 16 E 70 per: to a rocky ridge perpendicular to the course and precipice looking

down into a branch of the Cafatrun- [1804 ning to the right; the Creek above [December winds into the direction of the last course, the ridge to the left divides the Calfat from the hot-spring Creek.

N 44 W "30 per

S 84 W 72 per: to the top of a high ridge very-narrow, connected with the hot-spring hill.

S 45 W 60 per: descending the Valley: The top of the hill west of the Camp is in the direction of the course: at right angles on the left at the end of the course 1^ mile distant is a gap or low place in the ridge contiguous to the hot-spring hill.

S 31 W 80 per: down the valley — veins of the flinty rock nearly in the direction of the course and fissures at right angles: Flint and hard siliceous stone above, Schistus at the base — and from thence to the place of beginning nearly in the course of the Valley.

Courses and distances from Hot-spring Camp to the river Camp, commencing at the Cabin — Thence

S I5°E 788 per: —to the il' Knoll 122 p. —to the I'J branch 162 p. to the 2** branch 282 p.— to 3:^ d° 322 p. — to 4'.'' d? 502 p. — to crossing of hot-spring creek 614 per: and at the end of the course a branch.

N 80 E 70 per: to the top of a ridge.

1804 1 S 69 E 184 per: to the 2"^ branch.

December J S 25 E 160 per:

S 68 E 80 p. to the Big lick.

N 55 E 200 p. to the 2*^ lick — at 160 p. 3*!


N 82 E 534 p. to the 5'.'' branch — at 168 p. the

4^ branch.

S 84 E 122 p. to the main Calfat — at 56 p. cross

the last branch, the course of the

Calfat is S 38° E.

S 74 E 178 p. to the 3" Hck.

S 54 E 304 p. to the river Camp. — at 94 p. a


1805 \ 2620 perches, equal to 8 miles 60 perches.

January! Saturday 5*> At Ellis' Camp.

Equal Altitudes.

ap:d6le Alt: 43° 18'30''.

Upper limb at q*" 4.7' 10'

^'^^ ^- ^^ I iv.ivi. ina: err

Center 9. 45. 12

Lower limb 9. 47. 19

Lower limb at 2. cq. 22

_ �'^ I r.ivi. ina: err

Center 3. i. 27

Upper limb ^ 3- 3- 33

As the same instrument was to be used for various purposes on the same day, the Index set for equal altitudes could not be screwed up untill the afternoon observation, and as the Index error was liable to change in the course of the day particularly when used much in the sun-shine, it is accordingly noted in the last example; the slight error it might occasion, would not materially affect the result.

Took the following alt: and azim: to ascertain the magnetic variation:

At to!" 3' 42'' a.m. O ap: dble alt: low.' limb


Hot Springs y^

47° 2i' lo'' Magnet: Azim: 846° Ind: err: + 13' [1805 15''. [January

At noon the ap: dble alt: O lowf limb was 65° 8'40'' Ind: err:+13' g'\

Lat: deduced 34° 27' 28''.8 which is within o''.2 of the mean of the former two observations.

Distances taken between the O and 3) limbs At 2" 22'45'' Distance 54° i' o'' Ind: err: + 13' 5"

2.25.50 . . . 54. 2. o

2.28.45 • • • 54.3-0

Distances taken of the D 's west limb from Alde-baran

At 7b i'. 56'''' Distance 84° 52'. (/�' In: er: + 13' 5'^ Alt: dble ^'s lowf limb

64° if 3c/' 7. 4. o 84. 51. o In: er:— i .20

7. 6. 6 84. 50. o by Do' Hunter

January 14- Monday. At a point which we passed in ascending Novf 14'? — N 40° E 5'' 6'. observed an Eclipse of the Moon.

At i2''4o' p' watch. Beginning of the Eclipse —

uncertain. 13.37 Beginning of total darkness

— good observation.

Took the following altitudes of the Sun to correct the Chronometer and ascertain the apparent time of the Eclipse. 15'? Tuesday

At a point on the river bank which corresponds to the Courses and distances of our voyage upwards viz Nov^ 14"^ N 10° W 8"? 8^'; took the Sun's alt. viz at 10^ 56' 24''. ap: dble alt lowf limb 66° ^6' 45'' Ind: err: + 12' 20". Thursday 17"'

At the Post of Washita, the same station where

1805 1 we observed on our way up, Took the Sun's altitude January/ yi^.

At 8" S3' 1" ap: dble alt: O low. limb 36° 44' 45'' In r er: + \i' 30''.

From the above observations the apparent time of the Eclipse may be found & the whole refered to the Meridian of the Post of the Washita.

tEl)e KitjerstiOe ^tt&&: CambriUge


University of Caiifomia


405 Hllgard Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90024-1388

Return this material to the library

from which it was borrowed.

litLOCTOi; 199?

SEP 2 7 1997




& EiXploration







3 1158 OOAlTfaB







  1. Perches. It must be expected that imperfections in our reckoning must arise from the retardments and difficulties met with on the rapids and shoals; compensations for lost time and rate of going are made at the moment when the best judgement can be formed.

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Text prepared by:

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Spring 2015-2016 Group:


Dunbar, William. "II. The Exploration of the Red, the Black, and the Washita Rivers." Documents Relationg To The Purchase & Exploration Of Louisiana. Ed. Bruce Rogers. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1904. 4-336. Internet Archive. Web. 23 Feb. 2016. <https:// archive.org/ details/ documents relatin00 jeffiala>. Home Page

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