Documenting Lewis and Clark – 1806, The Return Home
15-16: Lewis Splits His Party
Meriwether Lewis: I have yet 10 horses remaining, two of the best and two of the worst of which I leave to assist the party in taking the canoes and baggage over the portage and take the remaining 6 with me; these are but indifferent horses most of them but I hope they may answer our purposes. I shall leave three of my intended pary, (viz) Gass, Frazier and Werner, and take the two Feildses and Drewyer. by having two spare horses we can relieve those we ride. having made this arrangement I gave orders for an early departure . . ..(Moulton, Vol. 8, p. 110)
Patrick Gass: There was a fine morning. We collected our horses, of which Capt. Lewis took six, and left four to haul the canoes and baggage over the portage; and then started up Maria's river with only three hunters. We continued here to repair our waggons or truckles to transport the baggage and canoes on when the men with them should arrive.- The musquitoes are still very troublesome.
When Capt. Lewis left us, he gave orders that we should wait at the mouth of Maria's river to the 1st of Sept., at which time, should he not arrive, we were to proceed on and join Capt. Clarke at the mouth of the Yellow-stone river, and then to return home: but informed us, that should his life and health be preserved, he would meet us at the mouth of Maria's river on the 5th of August.(Moulton, Vol. 10, p. 254)
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