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The quarterly of the Oregon Historical Society. Volume XXVI Oregon Historical Society 1925

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of the
Oregon Historical Society
Volume XXVI
MARCH, 1925
Copyright, 1923, by the Oregon Historical Society
The Quarterly disavows responsibility for the positions taken by contributors
to its pages.
Lewis A. McArthur—The Lakes of Oregon     ~^^^^^^^^^a
F. W.  How ay—Some Additional^ Notes  Upon  Captain  Colnett
and the "Princess Royal" ' W^S^^^^^^eS^S^^^i. 12~22
T.  C.  Elliott—Introduction  to  David  Thompson's  Narrative:
The Discovery of the Source of the Columbia jfts - - 'Jpjr j 23-28
David Thompson—Narrative of the Expedition, ^tc. etc. - - 28-49
Peter H. D'Arcy—Memorial Tribute to Judge J. A. Stratton -.'-. 50-51
Reviews—David   Thompson,   The   Explorer,   F.   W.   Howay;
Harvey W. Scott: History of the Oregon Country, F. G. Ycung 52-56
News and Comment     - "ii^^%fe%^^^^^^^^Mi^^' "     "     57-64
Entered at the post office at Portland, Oregon, as second-class matter  THE
MARCH, 1925—DECEMBER, 1925
Edited by
Eogene, Oregon
Koke-Chapman  Co.
Barlow, Samuel Kimbrough
By Mary Barlow Wilkins  .. 209-224
Colnett, Captain, and the "Princess Royal/*'
Some Additional  Notes  Upon
-By F. W. Howay  .     12-22
DuFLOT de Mofras, Eugene, Introduction to Translation of
Journal of
By Nellie Bowden Pipes  151-152
Finlay's Journal, An Error Concerning
By Marion O'Neil  _   274-275
Helmick, Sarah, and Helmick Park
By Virginia Nesbit.  .444-447
Historical Expedition, the Upper Missouri
By F. G. Young _  276-279
Hunsaker, Reverend Arthur J., A Tribute to
By Charles B. Moores 225-228
Lakes of Oregon, the
By Lewis A. McArthur.        1-11
Lyle, John, and the Lyle Farm
By Julia Veazie Glen 130-150
Newspapers of Oregon, the, 1846-1870
By Flora Belle Ludington „„ .. 263-273
Oregon, the Creation of, as a State
By Charles H. Carey.  281-308
Oregon Geographic Names
By Lewis A. McArthur 309^23
'Stratton, Judge J. A., Memorial, Tribute to
By Peter H. D'Arcy _      50-51
Thompson, Davtd, Introduction to the Narrative of, Relating
to the Discovery of the Columbia River
By T. C. Elliott     23-28
Thompson, Davtd, Pathfinder and the Columbia River
By T. C. Elliott. I 191-222
Verendrye Expeditions, Review of the
By Grace Flandrau  . _ . ~.   65-82
Verendrye Journals, Introduction to the
By Ralph Budd  .       83-4
Duflot  de  Mofras,  Eugene,  Translation  of  Extract  from
Exploration of Oregon Territory, Undertaken During
Years 1840, 1841 and 1842, Introdutton and Translation
By Nellie Bowden Pipes..— -..., 151-190
[hi] Table of Contents
Emmons, Extracts from the Journal of Lieut. George Foster,
U.  S.  Navy, Attached to the  U.  S.  Exploring Expedition,
Introduction by Geo. Thornton Emmons, U. S. Navy
By T. C. Elliott 263-273
Thompson, David, Narrative of the Expedition to the Kootanae
and   Flat  Bow  Indian   Countries  on  the   Sources  of  the
Columbia River
Introduction by T. C. Elliott ~ 23-56
Verendrye Expedition, Journal of the, to the Mandan Villages
on the Missouri 1738-9
Translated by Douglas Brymner  85-115
Verendrye Exploration, Journal of the, to the Foothills of
the Rocky Mountains, 1742-3
Translated by Anne H. Blegen „ - 116-129
Errata    ~        280
F.  W.  Howay, David  Thompson,  the  Explorer
By Charles Norris Cochrane       52-3
F. G. Young, Harvey W. Scott History of the Oregon Country,
Compiled and Annotated by Leslie M. Scott     53-56
Blegen,   Anne   H.—Translation   of   the  Journal   the   Verendrye
Exploration to the Foothills of the Rocky Mountains, 1742-3....116-129
1742-3     116-129
Brymner Douglas—Translation of the Journal of the Verendrye
Expedition to the Mandan  Villages on the Missouri River,
1738-9   85-115
Budd, Ralph—Introduction to the Verendrye Journals     83-84
Carey, Charles H— The Creation of Oregon as a State 281-308
D'Arcy, Peter H.—Memorial Tribute to Judge J. A. Stratton     50-51
Elliott, T. C.—Introduction to David Thompson's Narrative:  The
Discovery of the Source of the Columbia      23-28
 David Thompson, Pathfinder, and the Columbia River.... 191-202
Emmons, Lieut. George Thornton—Introduction to Extracts from
the Emmons Journal         263
Flandrau, Grace—Revievj of the Verendrye Expeditions     65-82
Glen, Julia Veazie—John Lyle and the Lyle Farm 130-150
Howay, F. W.—Some Additional Notes upon Captain Calnett and
the "Princess Royal"  .. „     12-22
—i Review   of  David   Thompson,   the  Explorer       52-3
Ludington, Flora Belle—The Newspapers of Oregon, 1846-1870....229-262,
McArthur,  Lewis A.—The Lakes  of  Oregon L.       l-H
 Oregon  Geographic Names 309-423
Moores,  Charles B.—A   Tribute to Reverend Andrew J. Hun-
saker  .« 225-228
O'Neil, Marion—An Error Concerning Finlay's Journal 274-275
Pipes, Nellie Bowden—Translation of Extract from Exploration
of Oregon Territory by Eugene Duftot de Mofras 151-190
Wilkins, Mary Barlow—Samuel Kimbrough Barlow 209-224
Young, F. G.—The Review of Harvey W. Scott's History of the
Oregon  Country        53-56
 The Upper Missouri Historical Expedition 276-279
of the
Oregon Historical Society
Volume XXVI
MARCH, 1925
Copyright, 1923, by the Oregon Historical Society
The Quarterly disavows responsibility for the positions taken by contributors
to its pages.
By Lewis A. McArthur
Preliminary investigations indicate that there are
about 500 lakes in Oregon that our people have seen fit
to identify by names. These lakes vary in size and importance from fine bodies of water, clear and amid delightful surroundings, to shallow desert ponds of highly
mineralized solution that literally dry up and blow away
with summer winds.
Oregon has excellent examples of every form of lake
enumerated by the physical geographer. Her lakes are
important economically as well as from a scenic and rec-
creational point of view. They furnish abundant supplies of water for human consumption, for power development, irrigation and mining, and it is difficult to conceive of more beautiful spots for camping and fishing
than on the shores of some of the lakes of the mountain
ranges of the state. They provide an attractive field for
In general a lake is an inland body of standing water
somewhat larger than a pool or pond. In the west the
words pool and pond are seldom used, and the word lake
is generally employed to include even very small bodies
of water. The term is also applied to the widened parts
of river and sometimes to bodies of water which lie along
the coast, even when they are at sea level and are directly
connected with the sea. Lewis A. McArthur
The conditions necessary for the existence of lakes
are (1) Depressions without outlets, and (2) a sufficient
supply of water. By depressions without outlets it must
not be understood that lakes have no outlets. It means
that below the level of the lake outlet there is in each
case a depression which has no outlet. It is this depression without an outlet that makes the lake, and when
the water reaches the elevation of the outlet it overflows.
Lake basins originate in many ways, but most of them
are the result of vulcanism and diastrophism. Diastro-
phism includes movements of the earth's crust up or
down. Vulcanism produces crater lakes, and in Oregon
particularly, streams of lava have caused a considerable
number of our water bodies. Other common causes are
landslides which dam up streams, glacial deposits, and
frequently glacial action, gouging out depressions in soft
rocks. Lakes are also produced by dams built of windblown sand.
Lakes are considered to be the most short lived of all
important geographic features. Every lake's fate is certain and its ultimate destruction has led to the famous
epigram, "Rivers are the mortal enemies of lakes." The
main causes of lake destruction are the lowering of
outlets by stream cutting which results in ultimate drainage of lakes, and by sedimentation from streams entering lakes which results in the depressions being filled up.
Lake basins are being filled constantly with sediment from
inflowing water, and also by wave action along the shores
and particularly by organic matter deposited by shell-
bearing animals, plants and other growths. In some
cases wind-blown dust accomplishes the end.
Oregon has four well defined lake regions. While
there are lakes in most of the counties of the state, nature
has concentrated her efforts as far as lakes are concerned
in definite areas. The first area is along the main axis
of the Cascade Range. This part of the state is well supplied with lakes, some of which are large and impressive, The Lakes of Oregon 3
such as Crater, Odell, Crescent, Davis and Waldo. In no
part of the state are lakes more beautiful or better suited
to recreational purposes. The setting and surroundings
of most of the Cascade Range lakes leave little to be desired.
South central Oregon, particularly Lake county, has a
number of large lakes, the most important of which,
Abert1 and Summer, are the results of shifts in the earth's
crust. The lakes of south central Oregon include some of
the largest in the state and for the most part they are
alkaline or otherwise chemically impregnated. The value
of the soluble minerals will have to be determined in the
future. Waterfowl abound in the tules on the edge of
many of these lakes, but generally the surroundings do
not provide attractive camping grounds.
The area between the Coast Range and the Pacific
Ocean, from the mouth of the Siuslaw River south to Coos
Bay furnishes most of the coastal lakes of the state, and
some of them are very fine. Siltcoos, Tahkenitch, Clea-
wox, Tenmile, and others will in time come to be very important to our citizens. It is interesting to note that the
Coast Range itself, and for that matter large areas of
the Blue Mountains too, bear but few lakes, even of
small size.
The fourth well-defined lake region of Oregon is in the
Wallowa Mountains. Wallowa Lake has a setting that is
suggestive of Switzerland, and while other of the Wallowa Mountain lakes are fairly small, they are well worth
It is not the purpose of this article to enumerate all
the lakes of the state, but to call attention to interesting
facts about the situation or history of some of the more
notable ones.
Two lakes stand out above all others in importance
to Oregonians. The first is Bull Run Lake which furnishes
necessary domestic and industrial water supply to nearly
1 Lake Abert was reported dry in 1924, but this was not confirmed. Lewis A. McArthur
a third of the population of the state. The civic and
economic importance of the lake cannot be stated in mere
dollars. This lake is one of Oregon's very greatest assets
and should be remembered as such. Veiled from the public both by law and by nature, Bull Run Lake sits surrounded by virgin forests and puts forth the best it has
to give for the comfort and health of over a quarter of a
million souls.
Crater Lake is one of nature's marvels. It is more
in the nature of a scenic wonder than anything else the
writer has ever seen. Oddly enough it is not a real crater
lake at all, because it occupies a caldra far larger than the
crater of the original mountains. Volcanic action produced the mountain and the crater, but the depression now
occupied by the lake is the result of diastrophism.
In the historic days of the first week in August in
1914 the writer camped on the rim of Crater Lake and
gazed at every changing hue of sky and water and measured light and shadow from the cliffs above. Early in the
morning the slanting rays of the sun fell through the
forest smoke that clouded the atmosphere, and turned
the waters of the lake a copper red and cast a rosy glow
on the surrounding walls. The sight more than anything
else resembled a giant pot of molten copper. In a few
seconds it was over and the water quickly turned to in-
fathomable blue.
Crater Lake has been the subject of so much writing
and is so well known to the public that the writer does
not feel it necessary to elaborate. There are, however,
two illusions about the lake that should be dispelled. The
lake does freeze over, contrary to popular belief. Also
many people discuss the possibility of underground outlets from Crater Lake. It is doubtful if there are any.
The lake receives its entire water supply direct from
precipitation, as the drainage area is but a little larger
than the lake. It is fairly certain that evaporation accounts for all of the outgo from the lake, without any
allowance for underground flow. The Lakes of Oregon 5
North of Mount Jefferson, wedged in between living
glaciers on the south and a rough precipitous mountain
wall a thousand feet high on the north, lies Jefferson
Park, a natural playground, invitingly level, directly
athwart the Cascade Range. I have seen much snow in
this park even as late as the first of September, but generally during August the park is a mass of flowers. There
are several lakes in the park, and the largest is but a few
hundred feet in diameter, but looking down into it from
the north, one gets a fine reflection of Mount Jefferson.
This lake was named in honor of Dr. Israel C. Russell,
one of the early geologists of the United States Geological
Survey, who was an enthusiastic investigator of Oregon
in the early eighties. The lake forms the south fork of
the Breitenbush River until late in the season, when
evaporation reduces its level to a point below the outlet.
The elevation of the lake above the sea is about 5900 feet.
The three so-called Deschutes lakes are the best known
of the lakes of the Cascade Range, with the exception of
course of Crater Lake. These are Odell, Crescent and
Davis lakes, and for natural beauty and surroundings
they are hard to duplicate. Odell is fed from melting
snows on Diamond Peak and Maiden Peak, and is about six
miles long. Its western end is but a few moments walk
from the summit of the Cascade Range at the proposed
crossing of the Eugene-Klamath Falls line of the Southern
Pacific Company. This lake occupies a depression cut by
a glacier and the terminal moraine makes the dam that
impounds the water. A stream connects this lake with
Davis Lake to the northeast, and while not so attractive
Davis Lake is well worth visiting. Davis Lake is unusual
in that it has a subterranean outlet under a lava flow,
so that it always discharges about the same amount of
water. Odell and Davis lakes have an important influence
in keeping the flow of the Deschutes River constant. Davis
Creek flows directly into the main Deschutes.
The third of this trio is Crescent Lake, one of the
loveliest in the state.   It has an elevation of 4837 feet Lewis A. McArthur
and bears a descriptive name. The surrounding woods
are magnificent, and with the reconstruction of the Willamette Highway between Eugene and Klamath Falls,
Crescent Lake is becoming easy of access. Hundreds of
visitors linger on the shores of these three lakes during
summer months, hunting and fishing in the midst of the
most refreshing natural surroundings.
Little known, but growing in importance, are the
Olallie Lakes clustered about the foot of Olallie Butte
midway between Mt. Jefferson and Mt. Hood. These lakes
lie in surroundings popular with the Indians who gave
to the Butte the name Olallie, meaning berry. From the
summit of this great rocky knob more than 30 lakes may
be counted without a glass. The proposed Cascade Range
road will pierce the very heart of this region and bring
these lakes within a day's drive from Portland. The
largest are Olallie, Monon, and Trout, covering many
acres, and even the smallest are well stocked with eastern
brook trout.
Clatsop county furnishes two lakes of interesting
history. Cullaby Lake, named for a local Indian celebrity,
is on the northern part of Clatsop plains and formerly
made its outlet through Necoxie Creek, first north and
then south to the estuary of the Necanicum River. Cattle
grazing along the lower Necoxie cut the nearby sands
which were shifted by winds, thus damming the creek
and forming Necoxie Lake. A short section of Necoxie
Creek still flows into the estuary, but the lake drains to
the north back toward Cullaby Lake, which now outlets
through Skipanon River. Here is a curious example of, a
complete change of direction of stream flow and lake
Cullaby Lake is the scene of the activities of the Clatsop county cranberry growers, and a number of acres of
low land lying adjacent to the lake have been converted
into cranberry bogs.
I have already mentioned Wallowa Lake. This is one
of the larger mountain lakes of Oregon, and is approxi- The Lakes of Oregon
mately four miles long. It is fed principally by the Wallowa river which is formed by the junction of the east
and west forks about a mile south of the lake. The elevation of the lake is approximately 4340 feet and the name
is derived from a Nez Perce word meaning a fish trap
built in a peculiar manner by the use of three poles sunk
in the water. The name was first applied to a point on the
Wallowa River where a number of these traps were located and has since become attached to the lake itself
and other important geographic features in northeastern
Oregon. A view from the north end of the lake includes
the serrated peaks and spires of the Wallowa Mountains,
many of which bear snow throughout the entire year..
This view of Wallowa Lake is certainly one of the most
beautiful in the state.
Nature narrowly missed giving Oregon two crater
lakes almost equal in size and beauty, but like many other
second attempts to improve upon a masterpiece, this one
failed. Twenty-five miles south of Bend lies Newberry
crater, a result of vulcanism much more recent than the
caldra that is occupied by Crater Lake. Newberry crater
is situated in the summit of the isolated Paulina Mountains and in this crater are two lakes, Paulina Lake and
East Lake, at an elevation of about 6500 feet or several
hundred feet higher than Crater Lake. It is apparent
that the caldra was at one time occupied by one lake, but
subsequent volcanic action has built up a series of small
craters running north and south across the middle which
divides the depression and leaves East Lake with neither
inlet nor outlet. Paulina Lakes overflows to the west
down Paulina Creek to the east fork of the Deschutes
River. Paulina Creek is blessed with several pretty waterfalls. Newberry crater broke down its western side and
if it had not been for this break it is apparent that the
water level would be much higher in the crater, and the
surroundings would have more nearly resembled Crater
Lake itself. At some points around the two lakes the walls
are precipitous and high, and Paulina Peak, which is Lewis A. McArthur
just south of Paulina Lake, affords what is probably the
finest view in Oregon. It stands about 8500 feet high, or
2000 feet above the lake, and its sides to the north are
rough and jagged. From the Forest Service lookout on
top the writer has seen the great snow peaks of the Cascade Range spread out like a fan in magnificent panorama, extending from Mt. Adams on the north to Mt. Mc-
Louglin on the south. Paulina Peak is situated well to the
east of the Cascade Range and permits a comprehensive
view of the great mountain backbone of the state that cannot be duplicated, not only on account of the height of the
viewpoint but also on account of its distance from the
main range which provides an almost perfect perspective.
Paulina Lake was named for the famous Indian chief of
central Oregon.
Summer Lake, in Lake county, is one of the larger
lakes of the arid part of the state and has an area of
about 60 square miles. Its main source of supply is the
Ana River which is a spring-fed stream attaining great
volume within a short distance from its source. Summer
Lake has no outlet and as a result its water is strongly
impregnated with salts, particularly sodium salts. The
lake was discovered and named by then Captain John C.
Fremont, of the U. S. topographical engineers on December 16, 1843. As he looked down from the ridge which
his party had climbed from the west he saw the sun
shining on the lake, bordered with green grass and the
contrast was so great that he named the mountains Winter Ridge and the body of water Summer Lake.
Four days later Fremont reached another large lake
occupying a great trough in the earth's surface, and this
he named for his chief, Colonel J. J. Abert. Lake Abert
is about the same size as Summer Lake and is fed principally by the outlet of Chewaucan Marsh and Crooked
Creek. The water is strongly impregnated with various
sodium carbonates and other salts. The great fault scarp
which stands above this lake on the east is an imposing
sight. The Lakes of Oregon
The Warner Lakes, which occupy the extreme southeast corner of Lake county, were discovered at Christmas
time in 1843 by Captain Fremont. They consist of various
shallow lakes, marshes and playas, extending almost the
entire length of Warner Valley. The lakes and marshes
are connected by surface channels or by underground
seepage and they present an attractive field of study to
the geologist. The valley and lakes were named for Brevet
Captain W. H. Warner, who explored the valley in the
latter part of 1849 and was ambushed and massacred by
the Indians on September 26 of that year near the present
sight of Warner Lake post office.
Fremont discovered and named one of these lakes
Christmas Lake but it is not definitely known which lake
he distinguished by the name. It seems probable that it
was Hart Lake. Much confusion has resulted over this
name on account of the fact that there is another lake
north of Summer Lake now known as Christmas Lake,
and it is frequently mentioned as having been discovered
by Fremont, although such of course is not the case.
Upper Klamath Lake is one of the largest lakes in
the state and is of considerable importance from an economic standpoint. The elevation of the water has been
put under control and it is probable that very substantial
use of the water for irrigation and power purposes will
be developed from time to time. Upper Klamath Lake is
surrounded by large areas of marshes which are said to
be susceptible of being converted into valuable agricultural land if properly drained.
Lower Klamath Lake is one of the other substantial
storage reservoirs that form the Klamath River, but it is
not nearly as large as Upper Klamath Lake and the surrounding swamp areas make it much less attractive from
a scenic point of view.
Tule Lake to the east of Lower Klamath Lake no longer exists as water body in Oregon as practically all of the
area that originally lay north of the Oregon-California
state line has been reclaimed by- irrigation enterprises. 10 Lewis A. McArthur
Maps of Oregon show two large lakes in the northern
part of Harney county. Malheur Lake and Harney Lake
are connected by The Narrows. These lakes have achieved
considerable prominence because of the controversies that
have developed over them between the proponents of bird
refuges and champions of the development of reclaimed
lands for agricultural enterprises. The lakes are far more
imposing on the map than they are on the ground. They
are shallow bodies of water, and after a succession of
dry years they actually occupy a much smaller area than
indicated on the maps. At the time of this writing they
are substantially smaller than they were at the time the
first land surveys were made. Malheur Lake, which receives the flow of several large streams, remains comparatively fresh, but owing to the fact that the lake outlets
into Harney Lake the latter acts as a catch basin for
mineral deposits and as a result is gradually growing
more alkaline in character.2
As official map making progresses many new lakes
are brought to public attention. This is particularly true
of the Cascade Range area. As a result of the activities
of the U. S. Forest Service a large number of small unnamed lakes and ponds between Crater Lake and Mt.
Jefferson have been placed on the map. There are probably more than fifty of these bodies of water that are not
yet named, and a considerable number of them are within
easy reach of Bend. There is no doubt but that they will
in the future constitute an attractive field for recreation.
A large number have been stocked with game fish.
The lakes of the coast region are not generally of
economic importance. Most of them occur near the sea
level and are so situated that they are not suitable for
power or for irrigation development. Some of them offer
good recreational facilities, but so far the people of Oregon have not realized what an asset they have in the coast
lakes, and also in the Cascade Range lakes.  The city of
5 Both of these lakes were reported dry in 1924. The Lakes of Oregon
Bend is just beginning to get an estimate of the value of a
number of fine bodies of water within easy automobile
distance from The Dalles-California Highway.
As I said before, the lakes of Oregon present an attractive field of study, not only the lakes as they exist
today, but the lakes as they have existed throughout
geological time. Geologists have hardly scraped the surface of their investigations with reference to the prehistoric conditions in the Warner Valley and in other
sections of the southeastern part of the state. It is hoped
that the time will come when it will be possible to assemble in one place the large mass of information that
now exists in scattered form about these most interesting
features of Oregon geography. SOME ADDITIONAL NOTES UPON
In the issue of this Quarterly for March, 1924, (Volume xxv, pp. 36-52) Professor Ralph S. Kuykendall, of
the Hawaiian Historical Commission, presented a fine
study of "James Colnett and The Princess Royal'," limited, however, to the period between the release of Colnett
from his imprisonment in Mexico in July, 1790, and the
arrival of the Princess Royal at Macao the following year.
These notes are offered as a contribution towards the
completion of the story by filling up some of the gaps
which Professor Kuykendall was obliged to leave.
On page 39, after stating that Colnett sailed in the
Argonaut from San Bias on July 9, 1790, expecting to
receive the Princess Royal from the Spaniards at Nootka,
he proceeds: "From this point on, Colnett's movements
are difficult to trace with certainty;" and on page 40 he
says: "It is, however, reasonable to conclude that his
arrival in China from Nootka occurred a short time before the date, July 25, 1791." Thus the material on
which Professor Kuykendall was working leaves a blank
space of about a year, July 1790 to July 1791, save only
as to the incident at Hawaii in April, 1791.
This hiatus can, to a certain extent, be filled up from
the copies of the British Foreign Office Correspondence
in the Archives of the Province of British Columbia and
from Hoskins' manuscript Narrative. In a letter from
Joseph d'Anduaga to the Count d'Aranda it is stated
that though Colnett left San Bias on July 8, 1790, for
Nootka, he did not arrive there until February 4, 1791—
"nearly six months, when only a few weeks were necessary," the Spaniard complains.1 Where was he in this
interval?  Hoskins' manuscript Narrative furnishes the
1 Letter  dated   14th   November,
1792.    Copy  in  Archives   of  British Captain Colnett and "Princess Royal"       13
answer.2 In June, 1791, the Columbia (on which Hoskins
was clerk, etc.) reached Clayoquot Sound, the next sound
south of Nootka on the west coast of Vancouver Island;
and about 15th June Hoskins records that he was informed by Tootiscoosettle, a subordinate chief, "that
Captain Colinet [sic] was here the last season and wintered here."
Hoskins then goes on to recount an incident which
that chief had told him. He says:
"Captain Colinet, having sent Captain Hudson, Mr.
Temple, and four hands, in a sail boat to Nootka; in their
passage thither, they ran on to a ledge of rocks, near to
Esquot: the boat went to pieces, and they were drowned;
a few days after, their bodies were found by the natives,
taken up, striped, gashed, and thrown out for the crows
to devour, this account has also been confirmed, by Clee-
shinah, or Captain Hanna, and several other Chiefs; with
this addition, that it blew very hard, with a heavy sea,
one of which upset the boat; the natives of Esquot seeing
it, went off in their canoes, to their assistance; but before they got to them, the boat's crew were all dead;
they picked them up, brought them ashore, and treated
them, as above related, he also added that after Captain Hudson, with his boat's crew, had been gone some
time, Captain Colinet hearing nothing of them, sent Mr.
Gibson to Nootka, to enquire of the Spaniards there,
about them (I suppose suspecting the Spaniards had detained them) ; in a short time Mr. Gibson returned, and
brought word they were killed by the natives; on hearing
of which, Captain Colinet took Tootiscoosettle and Too-
tooch; at the same time threatening, without the dead
bodies were brought, in a week, for him to see, whether
they were killed or not; he would kill those two Chiefs, and
every native he could find. Cleeshinah says, he immediately went to Esquot himself; where the dead bodies were,
but being putrified and much eaten by the crows, he did
not bring them; but brought all their cloths: these not
being bloody, Captain Colinet was satisfied, released the
2 The narrative of a voyage to the North West Coast of America and
China on trade and discovery, by John Hoskins. Performed in the ship
Columbia Rediviva, 1790, 1701, 1792 and 1793. The original manuscript
is in the library of the Massachusetts Historical Society; copy in the
Archives of British Columbia. 14
Chiefs, and made them a present of several sheets of
copper, cloating, etc. etc. but before he returned, he says,
his people had taken one of Captain Colinet's out of a boat
not far from the ship. Since this, I have been informed
by Captain Kendrick, that it is the opinion of the Spaniards at Nootka, that these people were murdered by the
natives; and those of Clioquot were the instigators of it."
We may therefore conclude that Colnett spent the remainder of the season of 1790 in trading for furs along
the Northwest Coast and wintered in Clayoquot Sound.
This seems to follow from the fact that when he arrived
in Macao on 21st May, 1791, he had a cargo of 1,200
sea-otter skins.3
When Colnett left the coast is not exactly known;
but, from Nootka on 28th February, 1791, he wrote a
letter to Quadra.3 He must have sailed shortly afterwards; for the voyage to the Sandwich (Hawaiian) Islands usually occupied about a month, and he was there
on April 2, 1791, as Professor Kuykendall has shown.
As he reached Macao on May 21, 1791, his visit must
have been very brief.
Now, as regards the Princess Royal, Professor Kuykendall has traced her movements in the summer of 1790,
when, under Quimper, she was employed in exploring the
strait of Juan de Fuca. According to the "Viage"4 she
sailed from Nootka on 31st March, 1791, and finished her
work on 1st August following. Doubtless she was sailing
southward under the circumstances mentioned by Professor Kuykendall, while Colnett in the Argonaut was
pressing northward to obtain her. After her arrival the
Princess Royal was, in a gale, driven ashore at San Bias.
This further complicated the plans for her return, and in
consequence, the Viceroy wrote to Captain Colnett stating
that the sloop would now be sent to Canton in order to be
3 Letter of 14th November, 1792, mentioned in note 1 for both statements.
4Relacion del viage hecho por las goletas Sutil y Mexicana (Madrid,
1802). See the translation in papers relating to the Treaty of Washington:
Berlin Arbitration (Washington, 1872), vol. v, p. 97. Captain Colnett and "Princess Royal"       15
re-delivered to him through the Philippine Company. On
her arrival in a damaged condition as Macao she was
tendered to her owners; but, as Lord St. Helens explains,
"though tendered at Macao she was not actually restored,
and the tender itself, considering the circumstances in
which she then was, was little better than illusory."5
After the tender was refused the Spanish authorities
decided, as Professor Kuykendall states, to sell the sloop,
but he is uncertain whether the sale actually occurred.
The letters in the Archives of British Columbia fill up
this small gap; they show that the Governor of the Philippine Company reported that the Princess Royal had
been sold for $2,000.6 This was probably a very fair
price in view of her alleged poor condition; she had been
bought by her owners for $3,600, some three years before.
Colnett appears to have been in correspondence with
the Spanish officials and, as usual, making complaints:
an occupation which he seems almost to have enjoyed.
The following extracts from a letter from the Viceroy of
Mexico to him may prove of interest.
"The moment that you preferred to me in your complaint of having been robbed of your effects I ordered a
speedy and formal judicial enquiry to be made and from it
we learnt that the gold watch had been returned to Ken-
driek, the octant and the musquets—it had been under-
slJood that they had been given as presents—have been returned to their owners. ***** Bad weather occasioned
the Princess Royal to go ashore at San Bias and this unfortunate accident prevented her being sent to you at
Nootka; by the dispositions that were immediately made
she will be carried to Canton in order to be redelivered
to you by the means of our Philippine Company. Of this
I informed you in my letter of the 18th of January of this
year which you will have received at Canton."7
5 See letter appended hereto; from the Archives of British Columbia.
6 Letter 4th December, 1792, from Francis James Jackson, British
Ambassador at Madrid, to Lord Grenville. Copy in the British Columbian
7 Letter to Captain Colnett dated 2nd September, 1791; copy in the
Archives of British Columbia. 16
F. W. How AY
In the Archives of British Columbia will be found
many leters dealing with the efforts of Meares and his
associates to wring a little more money out of Spain. The
original claim of $653,433 was, in September, 1790, increased to £469,865 (i. e. it was multiplied about four
times), and in order that anything omitted might thereafter be included, the statement bears the words": "Errors Excepted."8 Perhaps they regarded this as the 18th
century form of singeing the Don's beard. The whole indemnity paid by Spain was only $210,000. From the
letter appended hereto it seems that $200,000 had been
tentatively agreed upon on the understanding that, inter
alia, the Princess Royal had been restored in good order.
After is was ascertained that this was not really the fact,
$10,000 more was obtained.
The conduct of Colnett at Hawaii in April, 1791, as
described by Professor Kuykendall and the letter that he
reproduces show him to have been, at the best, a man
who in an emergency easily became unduly excited and
acted in a precipitate, ill-judged ,and un-balanced manner.
Meares states that on the seizure of the Argonaut Colnett
became so deranged that he attempted frequently to
destroy himself. Meares, though in general quite unreliable, has in this instance the support of the Spaniards.
Martinez in his manuscript diary, under the date July
9, 1789, writes:
"This afternoon, the pilot Don Jose Tovar, who is
entrusted with the guarding of the packet, (i. e. the Argonaut) informed me that Captain Comet, whom, the day
before, I had permitted to be on board his own ship, had,
either through madness or desperation at seeing himself
a prisoner, made a motion as if he wished to throw himself into the water. * * * * However the men who were at
work and some of his officers who were in sight prevented him from leaping overboard."
8 See  the  Report  of   the   Archivist  of  British   Columbia   for   1913.
(Victoria, 1914) p. 35. Captain Colnett and "Princess Royal"       17
Two days later the diary contains this entry:
"At daybreak this morning, I was informed by the
pilot Don Jose Tovar, who is entrusted with the command
of the packet for its voyage to San Bias, that Captain Colnett, from the effects of despair or madness, had thrown
himself into the water through one of the port-holes or
windows of his cabin. However, on hearing the noise
which he made when he struck the water, he was discovered from the quarter-deck, and was picked up by
the packet's launch, which went to him at once. When it
reached him he was half-drowned, but they turned him
on his stomach and relieved him of much of the water he
had swallowed. I immediately ordered that he be shut
up in a stateroom to prevent him from suffering harm in
that way."
The documents annexed hereto are reproduced by the
kind permission of Mr. Forsyth, the Archivist of British
Columbia. They will, it is hoped, be found useful to
those who are interested in this side of the celebrated
Nootka dispute.
Paper Endorsed "Princess Royal. Certificate of Cost"
John Etches of ffenchurch Street in the City of
London, Merchant, lately Commercial Superintendant on
board the Ship Prince of Wales, James Colnett, lately
Master, having then under his Command the Sloop called
the Princess Royal, Charles Duncan, Master, on a voyage
from London to the North West Coast of America, and
Canton in China, maketh Oath and saith that the said
two Vessels arrived in * Macao Roads, from the North
West Coast of America, with each a Cargo of Furs, in
or about the Month of November 1788, and that the said
Sloop Princess Royal was afterwards valued by the said
Captains Colnett & Duncan with all her Tackles and furniture as she arrived there from Sea, at the sum of Three
thousand  and  six  hundred  Dollars  or  Nine  hundred 18
F. W. Howay
pounds Sterling, for which Sum she was actually and bona
fide sold to Daniel Beale Esq. Agent at Canton, for the
Associated Merchants trading to the North West Coast
of America.
(Signed) John Etches.
Sworn at Guildhall,
London, the 4th of November, 1791,
Before me
John Boydell,
15 September, 1792.
My dear Lord,
As I imagine that you are by this Time returned to
town and are prehaps preparing to send instructions to
Mr Jackson for the final adjustment of the Nootka claims,
I take the Liberty of laying before you a few remarks
that have occurred to me in looking through Mess™
Meares and Etches last letter upon that subject to Sr
R. Woodford.
In the first place, it seems to me that their demands
of an indemnification for the Ship the Pss Royal, over
and above the 50,000 £ which they expect to receive by
way of compromise, is by no means well-founded, since it
is in reality asking to be paid for her twice over; neither
can they have any kind of claim to the cargo which she
brought to China, and which they themselves admit to
have been purchased and loaded upon Spanish account.
But in other respects the circumstances which this letter
mentions relative to that Vessel (and which I do not
recollect to have seen distinctly stated before) are, I
think, deserving of notice, and, should Your Lordship be
inclined to press the Spanish Minister to increase his
offer, of a nature to give great weight to such a requisition. For I well remember that the only reason which he Captain Colnett and "Princess Royal"
assigned for reducing it to 200,000 Dollars from 237,000
at which it had been fixed, was his having received what
he considered as positive information of these two facts,
the one, that this Vessel, the Pss Royal, had been actually
re-delivered to her owners, in good condition, at the Port
of Macao; the other, that the Vice Roy of Mexico had not
only advanced a considerable sum of Money to Captn
Colnett, but provided, at the King of Spain's expence, for
the entire re-equipment of his Ship, the Argonaut. Now it
appears pretty clearly from this letter and from Colnett's
former narrative, 1°, that in adjusting the proposed compromise, the value of the Pss Royal and her original cargo
ought to be taken into account, since tho' tendered at
Macao, she was not actually restored, and the Tender
itself, considering the circumstances in which she then
was, was little better than illusory; and 2°, that Captn
Colnet was obliged, tho' as it should seem, contrary to the
Vice Roy's intentions, to expend at St Bias almost the
whole of the money with which he had been supplied at
Mexico, in the necessary repairs and refitting of his Vessel; so that, as the Spaniards were confessedly bound to
restore both Ships in statu quo, they are plainly not entitled to charge that advance of money as making part of
the stipulated indemnification. I presume therefore, as
I mentioned above, that the Spanish Minister, on his being made acquainted with the substance of these two
papers, must immediately see that the information which
had led him to lower hia intended offer, was by no means
correct, and consequently agree to fix it, as before, at
237,000 Dollars, which sum, rating the Dollar at only
4s and 2d» which I believe is less than its present value,
would amount to within a few hundred Pounds of the
50,000 £ demanded by the Claimants, but I think that it
would be better to try to obtain the augmentation by this
mode, than by proposing as Messrs Meares & Etches
recommend, that the 200,000 Dollars now offered should
be rated at 5s each, so as to render the effective payment
about 240,000 Dollars.   For Count d'Aranda would not 20
F. W. Howay
readily comprehend this last proposal (which would besides be somewhat repugnant to the idea of a compromise,
by requiring an investigation of many items of the account) whereas it must certainly be present to his recollection, and that of his first Secretary, M. Otamendi
(with whom I negotiated the detail of this business) that
the result of the conferences which we held together last
June had been that their intended proffer should amount
to the precise sum of 237,000 Drs, though they afterwards
reduced it on receiving the above mentioned advices from
Mexico; and indeed this fact is partly proved by the correspondence between myself and Count d'Aranda, copies
of which I transmitted in my dispatches of that period.
I have thought it my duty to mention these circumstances to your Lordship, under the notion, that as the
Claimants would, no doubt be highly gratified in obtaining these additional 37,000 Drs and there is reason to suppose that they may be easily had, you may perhaps think
it worth while to ask for them; but I no means wish to
intimate as my opinion that in case this application
should fail, it would be prudent to reject the present
tender altogether, and have recourse to the other alternative of an arbitration; nor indeed can I easily persuade
myself that the claimants themselves would wish to carry
matters to that extremity notwithstanding the language
which they may now affect to hold. In fact every thing
considered there seems great reason to doubt whether,
even after all the expence, delays, and other inconveniences attendant upon a reference, the ultimate award of
the Arbitrators would be for a larger sum than that now
offered. I inclose herewith a translation of the papers
in Spanish annexed to the above mentioned letter from
Mess™ Meares & Etches as they have been so incorrectly
copied as to be hardly intelligible in the original.
Having found great benefit from these Waters, I propose remaining at Harrogate a few weeks longer, after Captain Colnett and "Princess Royal"      21
which I believe I shall go to Nottinghamshire, but, at any
rate if Your Lordship should have any commands for me
Mr Aust will always know where I am to be found. I beg
my best respects to Lady Grenville, and that you will believe me ever with the sincerest attachment,
My dear Lord,
Most faithfuly & truly yours,
(Signed)    S* Helens.
The R* Honble Lord Grenville.
St. Helens to D'Aranda. May 22,1792.
Granting that the points of the provisional adjustment
agreed to between the Commissaries concerning the skins
on board the Ship Princess Royal: the value of the Argonaut; and that of the Jason, which amount the three
together to 137,333 hard dollars, are not to suffer other
diminution than what may result from the documents
which on the part of Spain may prove to be satisfactory,
we only could pay down immediately to the reclaiming
parties 47,816 hard dollars which is the sum that for the
sake of a speedy conclusion might be looked upon as disembarrassed or in other words as indisputable out of the
185,152 hard dollars of the provisional adjustment.
Letter from Vice Roy of Mexico to Captain Colnett.
My orders for the careening & refitting of your Ship
were most ample, directing that no cost should be spared
and in truth it so turned out, as I am persuaded that
everything was done to your satisfaction & the Sloop the
Princess Royal was refitted in the same manner, the
careening of which, it being a small Ship, cost 1062 hard
dollars. 22
F. W. Howay
Letter to Count Florida Blanca from Mexico. May 1,1790.
The Sloop "Princess Royal" shall be delivered to
Thomas Hudson at Nootka in a good and serviceable condition, for which I direct the Commandant to give the
necessary orders.
Letter addressed from Whitehall, Sept. 1792, to
Mr. Jackson.
You will have observed in Lord St Helens Correspondence in the Month of June last, that before the Intelligence was received from the Vice Roy of Mexico, of the
order he had given for the Restoration of the Princess
Royal, Count d'Aranda had fixed the intended offer at
237,000 Dollars, and that he lowered the Sum to 200,000
only on the Supposition of these orders having had their
full effect. I cannot therefore Doubt, when you explain
these Circumstances to him, that he will consent to add
the Sum of 37,000 Dollars to his Proposal as he originally
intended, and as this total will then be a very little
short of £50,000 Sterling.
Letter from Anduaga to Aranda. Nov. Ik, 1792.
With respect to the restitution of the Sloop Princess
Royal, since Spain had offered to make it, and it had not
taken place, I said to Mr. Jackson that I considered it just
that the Value should be made good; though I observed
to him that Captain Colnet should not have refused to
admit her, but should have received the Vessel and demanded the Amount of the damage that it might appear
she had sustained compared with the state in which she
ought to have been restored; adding that this step had
been taken at Canton with the necessary formalities on
our part, by which it appeared the price for which she
had been sold at Canton, after Colnet's Protest and the
estimate that was made of the damages which she was
found to have suffered compared with the value that had
been put upon her before the same formalities. THE DISCOVERY OF THE SOURCE OF THE
Settlement of the Oregon boundary dispute by the
treaty of 1846 on the basis of the forty-ninth parallel of
North latitude from the Lake of the Woods west to
Georgia strait included a remarkable coincidence, in that
such a line at its western end actually divided the watershed of the Fraser river from that of Puget Sound—using
the last term broadly. This was as it should be by reason
of the journey of Alex. MacKenzie in 1792, and the explorations of Simon Fraser in 1806 and the prior occupancy
of the watershed of the Fraser by British tradings posts
or forts. The United States had acquired any Spanish
rights of discovery of the mouth of that river by Elisa
in 1790 or 1791, but did not press that claim.
On the other hand the United States asserted a right
to the entire basin of the Columbia river because of the
first entrance of its mouth by Capt. Gray in 1792 and the
explorations of Lewis and Clark in 1805-6, but waived
such right to that half of the river, which lies north of
the forty-ninth parallel. This also was just because an
Englishman, David Thompson, had first found and explored that part of the river. This fact received little
or no attention in the diplomatic controversy, and may
also be called a remarkable coincidence. But in losing
this part of the basin of the Columbia, the United States
obtained all of the Puget Sound country, which Capt.
Geo. Vancouver had discovered and explored and mapped
in 1792.
These remarks serve to introduce the document now
presented, namely, a cotemporaneously written account
by David Thompson of his discovery of the source of the
Columbia in 1807. The mss. transcript of this document
has come to the writer through the courtesies of the Archives Department of the Canadian Government and a
friend who is much interested in such research, Mr. John
A. Chisholm, of Canada.
X 24
T. C. Elliott
The written histories of the Columbia river have given
very little attention to the discovery and exploration of
its source and upper reaches, while much has been said
about the finding and exploration of its mouth. The
records left by Capt. Robert Gray, and John Boit, of the
crew of the Columbia (Rediviva) have been reproduced,
with maps and notes, in the pages of the Oregon Quarterly. The writer of this introduction has also contributed
certain data as to David Thompson, but until comparatively recent years little has been known of the life and
career of this remarkable man, who, first of white men,
crossed over the Rocky Mountains of Canada and found
the river there. This account—now presented—was written by himself and sent back that same year in the form
of a report to his associates of the Northwest Company,
then the active rival of the Hudson's Bay Company in
the fur trade of Canada. This man David Thompson,
officially designated the astronomer of the company, was
a practical trader for furs, a careful scientist and close
observer. This document has not before been printed,
as far as known to the writer, and is of peculiar interest
to the scientific student and the lay reader as well. The
assertion that David Thompson first crossed over the
Rocky Mountains may seem a trifle strong and need qualification; but there is a difference between crossing over
the mountains and through them, and a great difference
in the physical barriers at different parts of the range.
With this in mind, David Thompson may be contrasted
with Alexander MacKenzie and his famous journey in
1792, who is entitled to all honor therefor. But it is. to
be remembered that MacKenzie stemmed the current of
Peace river, which flows through the main range of the
Rockies, and crossed a spur of that range to the westward
at a low elevation. Further south the Lewis and Clark
party in 1805 crossed the main divide by a very easy
pass, the Lemhi, and came to the waters of tributary
streams, not the river itself. It is known that intelligent
Indians and men of mixed blood had crossed the Rockies D. Thompson's Discovery Source of Columbia    25.
to the Columbia prior to 1807, but without leaving any
written or dictated report. In the future something may
be found to disclose who did actually set eye upon some
of the physical conditions existing west of the Rockies
and appearing on maps published before and during the
time of Jonathan Carver (Flathead Lake, for instance),
but the above references seem to include all of our present
knowledge of the subject.
The writer of this introduction has twice visited the
source of the Columbia river and has taken phonographs
there. For the better understanding of the lay reader it
may be well to indicate here a few of the names and locations appearing in this document with reference to
present day geography. The lake region where the Columbia rises is now easily accessible by a fine auto highway,
extending across the mountains to Banff; but is was no
such pass as that by which David Thompson crossed.
In 1807, and years before, the fur traders of the Saskatchewan prairies and streams of Canada had been doing business with small bands of Indians, who had crossed
the mountains and descended the Eastern slope to a
prairie or meadow of the foothills known to them as the
Kootenae plain. This prairie was situated considerably
north of the present site of Banff and the Canadian Pacific railroad. These Indians were known as the Kootenaes
and therefore the river which David Thompson came
upon on the 30th of June, 1807, flowing to the North,
was called by him the JKootenae river: he did not know
that he had found the Columbia. And, in distinction, the
river now called the Kootenay was named by him the
Flatbow river: just why we do not know. The name
Flathead, as applied to the Saleesh Indians, is equally
The trading posts or forts of the Northwest Company
and the Hudson's Bay Company, located in the Saskatchewan country, were classed colloquially among the traders
as Forts des Prairies, and the particular fort at which 26
T. C. Elliott
David Thompson outfitted in 1807 was called Rocky
Mountain House, and was situated on a branch of the
North Saskatchewan river some distance southwest from
the present city of Edmonton. That city has grown up
on a later site of Fort Augustus, which was, in 1807,
some twenty miles distant from where Edmonton now is.
The pass over which David Thompson crossed, came
to be and still is mapped as the Howse pass, a name applied by David Thompson himself in honor of a rival
trader of the H. B. Co., who followed him through it.
Very fittingly it might have been named the Thompson
pass. The engineers who selected the route for the Canadian Pacific railroad explored this pass and some of them
much preferred it to the pass actually used some distance
to the south. The stream which David Thompson followed
westward from the summit was afterward named Blaeberry creek: he referred to it merely as the portage
stream. This pass has not been used for many years, and
is blocked with fallen timber, the merchantable timber
having been logged off and there being few meadows
fitted for agriculture. This stream flows into the Columbia six or seven miles north of the divisional town of
Golden of the Canadian Pacific railroad, near a siding
called Moberly.
From that point David Thompson ascended the Columbia about one hundred miles and came to Windermere
lake, a beautiful sheet of water, and further south to Columbia lake, which he described as being shallow, and
quite properly so as compared with the former. Now the
river flows northward out of Windermere lake at the edge
of the bench or bluff at its eastern side, but in 1807 it
probably used a channel at the western side of the lake (or
at least partly flowed that way) and joined the stream
coming in from the Selkirk range on the west now known
as Tobey creek, but which David Thompson then named
Kootenae river. It was close to the junction of those two
streams that he built his permanent Kootenae House, as
described.  Just where he had built his warehouse for a D. Thompson's Discovery Source of Columbia    27
temporary protection of goods and furs is not positively
known, but it was not far from the fine log building which
has been erected as a memorial there, at the joint expense
of the Canadian Pacific R. R. and the Hudson's Bay Company, and which was dedicated with fitting ceremonies
in the late summer of 1922.
Finnan MacDonald, the assistant of David Thompson—with the rank of clerk, was a remarkable Scotchman, then young and with limited experience, who remained in the Columbia basin till 1826 or 1827, and explored many parts of this region, and whose career demands a special contribution.
Jaco Finley, whose name appears, afterward built
Spokane House (1810), and was a resident there as late
as 1825-6. His name remains attached to several streams
and localities of Old Oregon, and it is evident that he had
been across the Rockies before 1807, and was then, probably, living in the Flathead country as a trapper on his
own account. He again took on employment by David
Thompson a few months later.
Mention is made of the name Ear Pendant Indians—
referring to the Pend Oreilles; and this is the earliest use
of that name which occurs to the writer. It must have
come from free trappers—Indians or mixed blood, who
used the French language and had already penetrated
into the region of the Spokanes and other tribes.
Mention of the establishment of trade on waters of the
Columbia in 1807 by Americans is merely an item of gossip, and shows how fast news travels among the Indians.
This must have referred to the arrival of Manuel Lisa's
men on the Yellowstone river, and possibly at the three
forks of the Missouri on a trapping expedition. Those
traders were from Saint Louis, and included two of the
Lewis and Clark party—notably one named Colter. 28
T. C. Elliott
With these rather extended—and to many readers
unnecessary—remarks, which are intended to avoid the
use of footnotes, the document is now presented.—T. C.
Narrative of the Expedition to the Kootanae @ Flat
Bow Indian Countries, on the Sources of the Columbia
River, Pacific Ocean, by D. Thompson on behalf of the
N. w Company 1807.
May 10th Having built a large Canoe @ got all ready,
being as well furnished with every Necessary, both for
Trade @ Building as the upper Department of Fort des
Prairies could supply—I sent off Mr. Finan McDonald
@ 5 men in the Canoe, with orders to follow the River to
the Kootenae Plain, where we would wait each other.
One man with myself @ 2 half engaged Men going by
Land @ taking in Charge 10 Horses belonging to the
Company, carrying 300 lbs of Pemmican @ some Baggage.
These Horses were for the Transportation of the merchandise &c across the Mountains, when the water Carriage should fail us. also 13 Horses belonging to the Men.
On May 25 the Canoe arrived at the Kootenae Plain; the
People had experienced much Danger @ Fatigue from the
very strong Current; but as the water was very low, they
were enabled to make use of the Line almost the whole
of the way. I had picked out 2 very good new Lines at
Kam @ yet they were found unequal to the rapidity of
the Current, often breaking @ endangering the Men @
Property. The greatest Hardship of the People lay,in
being continually wet up to the Waist, exposed to cold
high winds, @ the water, coming direct from the Snows
on the Mountains, was always so excessively cold as to
deprive them of all feeling in their Limbs. On May 28th
I sent the Canoe @ 6 Men down as far as the eastern Ridge
of Mountains for the Goods we had placed there in the
Winter; with which they arrived at the Kootenae Plain,
all well the 2d June.   On June 3d All the Horses @ D. Thompson's Discovery Source of Columbia    29
Baggage &c arrived, having had extreme difficulty in getting hereto, from the badness of the Country @ the emaciated state of the Horses, no Grass as yet havg. sprung
up in these cold Regions. Having rested the People @
Horses on June 5th I sent off the Canoe @ 6 Men with
half Cargoe to proceed as far as the Water would permit.
A Man @ myself going by Land. The Horses @ rest of
the Property were left at the Kootenae Plain, in care of
Mr. Finan McDonald @ a Man, as this was the last @
only Place, where Pasture could be found for the Horses
or Animals for the People for Food. On June 6th at
Noon we left the main Stream coming from the N. N. Wd.
@ followed a Rivulet for abfc. 4 Miles, where it becoming
too shoal, we put the Goods on shore, @ I staid in care of
them; the Men @ Canoe immediately went off for the remainder, @ by June 10 all was landed at my Residence
the People returned to live at Kootenae Plain, 'till I
should send for them. Here among their stupendous @
solitary Wilds covered with eternal Snow, @ Mountain
connected to Mountain by immense Glaciers, the collection
of Ages @ on which the Beams of the Sun makes/hardly
any Impression when aided by the most favourable weather I staid for 14 Days more, impatiently waiting the melting of the Snows on the Height of Land. During this
Time we arranged all the Goods @ whatever could receive Harm by Shocks against the Trees, Rocks &c in
Boxes of thin Boards sewed together. The Weather was
often very severe, cloathing all the Trees with Snow as
in the Depth of Winter, @ the Wind seldom less than a
Storm we had no Thunder, very little Lightning, @ that
very mild; but in return the rushing of the Snows down
the Sides of the Mountains equalled the Thunder in
Sound, overturning everything less than solid Rock in its
Course, sweeping the Mountain Forests, whole acres at a
Time from the very Roots, leaving not a Vestige behind;
scarcely an Hour passed, without hearing one or more of
these threatening Noises assailing our Ears. The Mountains themselves for half way down, were almost ever S3BHH
T. C. Elliott
covered with Clouds; in the chance Intervals of fair
Weather I geometrically measured the Height of 3 of
those that were most eligible, @ found their perpendicular Height above their Bases, or the level of the Rivluet
to be 4707 ft. 5200 ft. @ 5089 ft. The Peakes of a few
Mountains rose ab*. 500 to 700 ft. above these; @ considering their elevated Situation on the Globe, they fall
little short of the most celebrated in Height above the
Level of the Ocean. Wearied with waiting @ anxious
to proceed, contrary to the Opinion of every one, I set off
with Bercier, my Guide, to examine if the Portage was
passable/ We started very early on 2 good Horses @ by
10 A. M. we were at the Head of the Defile or Ravine,
where the Springs send their Rills to the Pacific Ocean;
I this Sight overjoyed me. We held our Route down along
the Brook, which was continually increasing it's Stream,
our Road was very bad: by 1 P. M. from a View of the
Country; I considered that part of the Defile as passed
in which the Snow was most likely to remain; my Giude
affirmed not but as all the Snow that lay direct in our
Road noways incommoded us, being only Patches, altho'
every Thing was dreary Winter about us. I determined
to return immediately @ send for the Men @ Horses
from the Kootanae Plain— June 24 in the Evening all
the Men @ Horses arrived. I separated to the Men the
Horses @ Goods that each might be responsible for what
was put under his immediate Care. The Merchandise
Stores, &c, were equal to the Carriage of 18 Horses in
this rugged Country @ we had only 10 Horses. I therefore left the Goods we could not take in charge of Mr.
Finan McDonald who was thus obliged to remain all alone,
till the return of the men a disagreeable work. Our whole
Stock of Provisions now amounted to no more, than 220
lbs of Pemmican, @ we had no Hopes of adding to it,
as the Country at this Time of year affords no Animals. June 25 Early we collected the Horses @ set off
every Man on foot, their own Horses carrying their Baggage— At 2 P. M. we put up at the Scources of the Brook, D. Thompson's Discovery Source of Columbia    31
that falls into the Kootenae River, the only Place where
there is a little pasture for the Horses. Our Road was
mostly over Pebbles @ Gravel, crossing/® recrossing continually the Brooks of the Saskatchewan— As I knew
the Road before us to be almost impassable to loaded
Horses, I sent 3 Men to clear away the wood as far as
they could— June 26th We began to proceed down the
Brook, a Man with myself going before @ clearing the
way for the Horses, as much as Circumstances would
permit, rarely, or never could even the Trace of a Road
be discerned. As the weather was very fine, @ the first
that had been this Season, the snow on the Mountains
melted, @ the water descending in innumerable Rills, soon
swelled our Brook to a Rivulet, with a Current foaming
white, the Horses with Difficulty crossed & recrossed at
every 2 or 300 yards, & the Men crossed by clinging to
the Tails @ Manes of the Horses, @ yet ran no small Danger of being swept away @ drowned— At 2 P. M. put up
as the Horses @ Men were much fatigued, @ as this was
the only Spot where a little Pasture could be found-
Gave the Men a large Dog for Supper for want of Bet- "J°^Z»^^
ter— Dried the Goods that had got wet. The Brook of
this Morning runs in a deep Ravine closely hedged in by
Mountains for ab*. 6 Miles, the Mountains then recede @
leave a narrow Valley for the Course of the Brook, now
swelled to the turbulent Torrent of a Rivulet. June 27 we
continued our March but made little Progress for the
time spent as we were almost every Step obliged to clear
the way, in the Afternoon we took to the Flats of the
Rivulet, now become a River with a Current extremely
rapid, the Space occupied by the gravel Banks, was generally from 2 to 600 yds. wide over which the River ran
in a Zig Zag Course, from Side to Side, so that we were
ever crossing it, @ as it was now very/much swollen by
the melting of the Snows, @ all the Flats covered, the
state of the Men, Horses @ Property was very alarming,
@ I every Moment expected to see one or other fall a
victim to the fury @ depth of the River, however thank
\1^ 32
T. C. Elliott
Heaven, we continued on 'till 6 P. M. when we put up
with no other Accident, than having wet almost the whole
of the Goods, @ the Men @ Horses very much fatigued.
Here where the Valley is wide the State @ Foliage of the
Herbs @ Trees, shewed Summer to have been here, at
least a full fortnight or more. June 28 by 6% A. M. set
off @ directly crossed the River, we now proceeded a
short way, 'till the Country being impassable with
Woods @ rocky Land, all Hands set to Work to clear a
Road for ab*. l1/^ M. @ by Noon got all our Horses &c
this far, we now came to a low flat Points which havg
Grass @ our Horses much fatigued, we stopped to refresh them, four Men now went off Axe in hand to clear
away the Wood, @ by 4% P. M. they returned, when
heavy Rain coming on we camped for the Night.
Here is a hard Day's Work, at the end of which we
found ourselves only abt. 1% Miles from whence we had
set out this Morng. June 29th by 5*4 A." M. we set off,
havg. gone in 3 dy. 2% Miles, we came (to a) Brook,
whose descent from the Mountains was so great, that
notwithstanding it had not more than from 3 to 3% ft.-
water, yet no loaded Horse could cross it without extreme Danger; we were obliged to throw a Bridge of very
large Trees across it, @ at last succeeded; havg. carried
all the Goods, Saddles &c. across/we obliged the Horses
to cross @ altho' they were quite light, yet the Current
swept them under for the distance of a few Feet. havg.
reloaded our Horses, we went on in an old Kootanae Road,
tolerable good 'till 11 A. M., when we stopped to clear the
Path up a long high Bank; we then went over much fallen
wood, the Country full of fine Timber @ great quantity
of Herbage. At 6 P. M. we descended a Hill, dangerous
to Horses, at the foot of which we camped. Killed a Red
Deer, which made a most acceptable Meal. Animals are
very, very scarce. Our route thro' the Woods has always
been near the River Banks, the Stream from it's great
Descent, a Torrent that seemingly nothing can resist,
always foaming with it's Velocity against the inequalities D. Thompson's Discovery Source of Columbia   33
of the Bottom @ may be abt. 60 yds. wide. June 30th
Heavy Rain came on @ detained us till 8i/2 A. M. when we
set off; cleared pieces of the Road, tho' in generall it was
passable from the nature of the Country; crossed a Hill
that forms a Point between this @ the Kootanae River,
on the Banks of the latter, thank God, we camped all safe
at 3!/2 P. M. set to work @ dried the Goods lost part of
my little Stock of Sugar by the Water.
July 1st a very fine Day, we completed drying the
Goods and put them all in good Order. July 2nd at 3 A. M.
sent off two Men in a small Canoe up the River to endeavour to find the Kootanaes @ bring a few of them to
our assistance, at 6 A. M. sent 4 Men with the Horses
to recross the Portage for the rest of the Goods. My
whole Stock of Provisions was now only 6 lbs of Pem-
mican, in a close woody Country/ very scarce of Animals,
nor would our Provisions have held out so long, had I
not shared out to each Man the scanty allowance of the
day. I staid with 2 Men, one of whom very sick,
unable to do any Duty. Having examined the Canoes
built last year at a great Expence, I found one of them
useless for Carriage, the other capable of carrying only
8 Pieces with 2 Men, so that I found myself absolutely
obliged to build a large Canoe, otherwise I could not advance with the Merchandise; there being no farther Road
for Horses: The information we had received ab*. the
Birch Pine Cedar &c. proved to be quite false, @ I was
obliged to search the Islands before I could find the Materials for a Canoe, on which I set to work with all Diligence being pinched by Hunger we tried angling, but
could not procure Fish of any kind.
July 8th In the Evening the 2 Men sent to look for
the Kootanaes, returned with 3 Lads @ the Meat of a
small Chevreuil a grateful Sight, they had found 2 Tents
of Kootanaes near the Lake @ had learnt from them that
the body of the Tribe with the old Chief was very far off
with the Canoe Flat Heads. Next morning sent the Lads
an huntg.   July 10 Mr. Finan McDonald with the Men 34
T. C. Elliott
@ Goods arrived @ all the Horses except one that was
killed on the Spot in a bad part of the Road on the Portage. July 11 finished the Canoe @ got in order to set off.
Our sick Man was now so far recovered as to begin to
work he had it seems in eating swallowed the Quill of a
■ Porcupine which had perforated the Intestines, till it
made its appearance under the middle of the Ribs on the
left Side from whence I extracted it two days ago.
The Kootanae Lads we had sent huntg. not returning/,
I was anxious lest some accident had befallen them. I
therefore sent Mr. McDonald @ 2 Men in a small Canoe
to look after them but they returned without havg. seen
anything of them. The next day as we were ready to
step into our Canoes, heard a shot below us, which we
concluded to be fired by the Kootanae Lads; we went @
found them, they had killed a Red Deer; a small part of
which half dried they had brought on their backs @ was a
grateful Meal after 2 days fasting. From what has been
said of the Road on the Portage, it is clearly seen that
Jaco Finley with the Men engaged last Summer to clear
the Portage Road, has done a mere nothing— the Road
was no where cleared any more than just to permit Jaco
@ his Family, to squeeze thro' it with their light Baggage and it is the opinion of every Man with me, as well
as mine that Jaco Finley ought to lose at least half his
wages for having so much neglected the Duty for which
he was so expressly engaged at 150 £ pr. year, besides a
Piece of Tobacco @ Sugar, @ a Clerk's equiptment. It
could not be on acct. of Provisions, as they had always
more than they could destroy. He had given in an acct.
of having left Timbers for a Canoe, not one could be
found, nor had he ever left one, as 2 of the Men, that were
with him, & are now with me witnessed. As I had no
Provisions for the Voyage, I offered the Men a Horse for
Food, which they refused. Gave to each Man 1 fishing
Line of 2 fms @ 2 Hooks. With a Man I now set off in
a small Canoe, to hunt what Fortune might throw in my
way.  July 13 havg. killed 9 Swans I waited the Canoes, D. Thompson's Discovery Source of Columbia   35
they did not arrive till Noon next day; havg. taken a
Meal, @ given them the rest of the Swans, we set off,
but could procure nothing more whatever for Food. July
16 as I was ahead a Kootanae Man @ woman in a Canoe
of Pine Bark/came to us, we told them to bring us something to eat, but they paid little attention to us, @ we
paddled on 'till 1 P. M. when we came to a Camp of 6
Men; they had a mere nothing for themselves, however
by 4 P. M. we procured enough to make a Meal, @ they
afterwards traded abt. 6 lbs of Buck Meat. I got 2 of
them to go a huntg. @ late in the evening they arrived
with 3 Swans, which they ran away with @ almost in
an instant devoured, without offering us a Mouthful,
seeing no Hopes of getting further good from these Hogs,
next morning at day break I set off @ waited the Canoes,
who soon coming up. I gave them the Morsel I had procured @ we all agreed to paddle on without delay to the
Lake, in Hopes of getting a Meal of Fish by our Nets &c.
July 18 at Noon we arrived at the Kootanae Lake extremely hungry @ fatigued, so that we were hardly able to
paddle; luckily we found a few Berries, which relieved
us a little; we hasted @ set the Nets.
Boulard, a half free Man, with the 3 Kootanae Lads,
had agreed at the Portage to bring us the Horses hereto,
but they arrived with only 3 Horses @ those the worst
belonging to the Compy. this was occasioned partly by
the laziness of the Fellow @ the badness of the Country,
being almost impassable., from whatever Cause the want
of the Horses was severely felt @ it was a material disadvantage to us in proceeding any farther, had it been
necessary, especially in our low Condition.
The 9 Kootanae Men whom we had left behind, also
arrived @ gave us near half a Chevreuil, which made a
most welcome, tho' scanty meal for us. Early in the next
Morng. we visited the Nets, but to our great Mortification
not a Fish in them. From the State of the Country @ the
Situation of my Affairs I found myself necessitated to
lay aside/ all Thoughts of Discovery for the present @
l:; 36
T. C. Elliott
bend my whole aim to an establishment for Trade &c.—
and as our pressing necessities did not allow Time for
Thought upon Thought. I set off to look out for a Place
where we might build, that as soon as I saw the Property
in safety @ a mode of living for the People I might be at
liberty to seize every favourable opportunity of extending my knowledge of the Country. I had for a second
iMr. Finan McDonald, who, however well intentioned was
by far too unexperienced to act alone in the present unfavourable situation. I first examined the Lake, but found
no Place that had Wood half sufficient, being only a thinly
scattered sort of Hemlock @ after havg. passed the major
part of the Day to no purpose, I was obliged to pitch
upon a Spot at the Head of the River, on a Bank of abt.
240 ft. high, @ very steep @ not a drop of water but
what must come up this Bank @ still we had nothing to
build with other than straggling, stunted sort of Hemlock
Trees,—not a Fir, nor Pine, within a Mile of us, @ those
in a swamp across the River. We now got every Thing
up the Hill @ pitched our Tents. As I was this Morng.
searching for a Place to build on, we came to a wildHorsej
that had been killed yesterday even, @ not knowing from
whence to get a mouthful for the day, we took a little of
the outside Meat, the inside we could not touch, as the
Horse was not embowelled, @ a strong taint prevaded
the whole Carcase, however it seemed tolerable Meat to
us, @ we determined to try @ make a Meal of it; so soon
as we arrived at the Camp, we boiled it, @ shared a small
piece to/every Man who joyfully eat it, in hopes of its
being portable in the Stomach, hunger is an excellent
Sauce, we found the Taste tolerable good, @ 3 of the Men
set off to dispute with the wolves the rest of the Carcase
of the Horse, of which they brought abt. 100 lbs. But
about 2 Hours after eating the Horse Meat we were
seized with sickness of the Stomach, @ however much we
wished to keep the Meat in our Bellies, were obliged to
throw it up, @ thus ended our Hopes of being able to feed
on wild Horses; tho' I attribute the Sickness we were D. Thompson's Discovery Source of Columbia    37
seized with, by no means to the natural quality of the
Horse Meat, but to the Putrifaction already begun thro'
the whole of the Carcase. In the eveng. I called the
Kootanae Men together @ spoke to them about their inattention towards furnishing us with Provisions, @ that
if they continued, we should be necessitated to return;
they brought me three fourths of a Chevreuil, which for
the present satisfied our Hunger. I then spoke to them
concerning the Situation of the surrounding Tribes, they
told me they expected the old Chief with all the rest of
their Countrymen, in company with a large band of Flat
Heads in abt. 10 Nights hence. As to the Flat Heads
they believed them far off but would soon be here, when
informed we had begun building, I accordingly engaged
two of their Men of abt. from 30 to 40 years of age to go
@ find the old Kootanae Chief @ tell him to hasten his
coming @ to bring us Provisions. I also engaged a steady
man to set off @ inform the Flat Bows of our arrival,
with order to the Chief of that tribe, whom I had formerly
seen @ given a Ring to come with all Diligence, as I
wished him to pilot me thro his Lands, that I might also
make an establishment for Trade in his Country. The
Kootanae told me my messages/ would be highly agreeable to all Parties, @ promised to set out the very next
Morning on their respective Commissions, assuring me
that I might expect to see them again in about 10 or 12
Nights hence. What a fine Opportunity was here lost of
going to the Flat Bow Country, from the embarrassed
Situation of my Affairs; on one hand the Property was
without Shelter @ the Men famishing, without knowledge
from whence to get any Sustenance— on the other hand
a large Band of Indians, part of whom had never seen
white People was expected in a few Days @ perhaps a
few Peagans &c with them— amidst much anxiety, nothing could sooth my Mind, but the expectation of the
speedy arrival of" the Flat Bows, when I hoped still to
have Time enough between my Departure @ the 15th
Septr.   (the day when the People must go off for the
loll I 38 T. C. Elliott
Goods from Kam) to explore at least the Flat Bow Country, @ by the Course of the large River, determine
whether it is the Columbia or not. Sleep at last relieve's
me from a Train of anxious thoughts. Circumstances,
which I could neither foresee nor prevent. Early the next
Morng. the Kootanaes traded a very few Lynx, among
which were the Skins of 4 white Goats, with the wool of
4 others. I traded them to send to Montreal that their
value might be known @ if worth taking. I also procured
abt. 12 lbs of dried Provisions at a high price. Having
given Tobacco to the Kootanae Men engaged to find out
the other Indians @ Inform them of my being here. They
immediately set off on their Journey. With the rest of
those who are to stay near us. I sent Boulard to bring us
any Meat he might be able to get from them. Here it
may not be amiss to state the nature of the Country.
This of the Kootanaes is a valley of from 6 to 12 Miles
wide, if we compute from Mountain to/Mountain, but if
only the level space, it will seldom exceed 2 Miles, being
the Ground occupied by the River; it's Islands, small
Lakes @ Marshes. It is bounded on the East by the great
Chain of Mountains @ to the westward by a Chain of
secondary Mountains, nearly as wide @ abrupt as the
primeval Mountains, but do not rise above 3 to 4000 feet
above the Level of their Base; close behind to the west-
ward of those secondary Mountains, rise others far more
elevated, covered with Snow @ Glaciers half way down.
At the south extremity of this Valley, where the western
Hills bend off to the Swd. @ the others recede to the eastward, lie the Kootanae Lakes, the southermost is a shoal
Lake of abt. 6 M. long fed by small Brooks, but sends out
a navigable Rivulet of abt. 7 M. long, which falls direct
into the second Lake, on which we are situated, this Body
Of water is very clear, @ has from 2 to 4 feet Water, is
abt. 7 M. long @ 1 Mile wide, in its greatest width it
sends out a Stream of from 50 to 60 yds. wide @ 3 ft.
deep— 2 Miles from the Lake it is joined by the Kootanae
River a rapid Current of 30 yds. wide, from the interiour
I trfi ■
m D. Thompson's Discovery Source of Columbia    39
of the western Mountains— they now one River under
the name of the Kootanae River take its Course thro the
Valley N. w. 70 Miles, to where we first saw it @ then
bends round seemingly more to the westward, with a very
strong deep Current; as it flows along it is joined by 2
other considerable Rivers @ several large Brooks, which
soon swell it's waters to 200 yds. wide of clear Channel,
but in general has many Islands, @ the Space occupied
by the River, is seldom less than from % a Mile to
1 Mile wide.
That part of the Kootanae River near the Portage is
well wooded with a kind of Hemlock 3 sorts of Fir, three
of Pine, with Aspens @ Birch, @ it's sides are thick set
with Alders-Willows, @ a few Poplar, abt. 20 Miles above
the Portage are low points of fine white Cedars, the Red
Cedars grow everywhere but seldom to any Size. Beaver
seem to be plenty @ the River, Islands @ Valley seem
expressly made for/ them. Of the Animals there are a
few Bears @ others, a few Red Deer @ a small sort of
Chevreuil, one of whom 10 Men will very well eat at a
Meal. As one approaches the Lakes, the Woods of this
almost impenetrable Forest, become gradually less close,
@ abt. 25 Miles below the Lakes, begins to show small
Meadows, @ soon becomes open clear Ground for Horses,
bearing plenty of good Grass, with straggling Hemlock;
the Spot that any Person is in, is a fine Meadow of Hill
@ valley @ Gullies, with Hemlock planted upon it as it
were for Shelter against the Heat @ bad weather, all the
rest of the Country to" the Spectator appears a thick
Forest, but as he advances, he constantly finds the same
open Meadows, which become more @ more Spacious,
as one proceeds to the southward, @ the Red Deer @
small Chevreuil become more @ more plenty. What kind
of Fish the Lake produces we cannot tell, as all our angling, have produced only 1 small