- CAPTAIN MERIWETHER LEWIS, U.S. INFANTRY.
Born, August 18, 1774, near Ivy, seven miles west of Charlottesville, Virginia, of Welsh parentage. Son of William and Lucy (Meriwether) Lewis. Well educated, blond-sunny hair; bowlegged, particular, precise, serious) reserved and inclined to melancholia and hypochondria. He served in the 1st Infantry, U.S. Army and in Gen. Wayne’s northwestern campaigns. In 1801 he was appointed Pres. Jefferson’s private secretary. After the expedition, he was appointed the Governor of Louisiana Territory. Clerks in Washington protested some of his drafts -some of which were connected with the expedition – which caused him emotional strain. He decided to go to Washington to explain the drafts, and while enroute on the Natchez Trace, he died, either by murder or suicide, o n October 11, 1809. A monument stands at his burial place on the Trace near Nashville, Tennessee. He never married?
- WILLIAM CLARK
Born, August 1, 1770, near Charlottesville, Virginia, of Scottish ancestry. Son of John and Ann (Rogers) Clark. Six feet tall, red-haired, a popular leader of men. He was promised a captaincy by Lewis, and received the same pay and recognition as a captain, though when the commission was received, it was for a second lieutenant. When the expedition returned to St. Louis he promptly returned the commission on October 10, 1806. After the expedition he was appointed Indian Agent, and after Lewis’ death, the Governor of Missouri.
He married first, on January 5, 1808, Miss Julia Hancock of Fincastle, Virginia. She died June 27, 1820, leaving four sons and a daughter. He married second, Mrs. Harriet Kennerly, widow of Dr. John Radford. One son survived this marriage. William Clark died in St. Louis on September 1, 1838, and is buried in Bellefontaine Cemetery near St. Louis.
- (BEN?) YORK.
Clark’s negro servant who was willed to him by Clark’s father on July 24, 1799. Since their childhood, a life-long companion of Clark. York was the son of “Old York” and “Rose, 7) slaves who had been with the Clark family all their lives.
York was kinky-haired, jet-black, large sized, and of Herculean strength. A wag, wit and delight of the party and Indians, who considered him Great Medicine. After the expedition he was freed by Clark, and he returned to Louisville, Kentucky, where he married. He was furnished a dray and six horses by Clark who was concerned for his welfare for as long as he lived. He engaged in the draying business between Nashville, Tennessee, and Richmond, Kentucky. He took to drink and entertained with stories about his adventures with the expedition, which became taller with each telling. He died of cholera in Tennessee.
- SERGEANT CHARLES FLOYD.
Born in Kentucky, son of Robert Clark Floyd, and a grandson of William and Abadiah (Davis) Floyd. He was one of the first to enlist in the party, which he did on August 1) 1803, in Kentucky, and is therefore listed as one of the “Nine young men from Kentucky.” He was a cousin of Nathaniel Pryor, also one of the party. Captain Clark called him “A man of much merit.” He kept a journal which is published in Thwaites’ edition of the Lewis and Clark journals. He died on August 20, 1804, of what has since been diagnosed as a ruptured appendix – the only man to die on the expedition. He is buried at Floyd’s Bluff, on the Missouri near Sioux City, Iowa. He was posthumously awarded a land grant, which was deeded to his brother, Davis, and two sisters, Elisabeth and Mary Lee Floyd.
- PRIVATE (later Sergeant) PATRICK GASS.
Born, July 12, 1771, at Falling Springs, near Chamberburg, Pennsylvania, of Irish descent. He was a son of Benjamin and Mary (McLene) Gass. Dark complexion, grey eyes, dark hair, short, burley, barrel-chested. “His talk unconventional -better suited for t he camp than the parlor.” He was recruited from Capt. Russell Bissell’s 1st Infantry at Kaskaskia, and his pay started with Lewis and Clark as of January 1, 1804. He had enlisted in the 10th U.S. Infantry in 1799 at Carlisle, Pennsylvania, after having served in a Ranger Company in 1792. He was a fine carpenter, boat builder, woodsman and great wit. After Charles Floyd’s death, he was elected sergeant. After the expedition, he served in the War of 1812 under Capt. Kingsly of Nashville, Tennessee. In March 1813, he was at Fort Massac, Kentucky, then at Bellefontaine, Missouri. In 1814, he ascended the Ohio to Pittsburgh, then on to Fort Erie. He was in the battle of Lundy’s Lane; then to Sackett’s Harbor.
He lost his left eye at Fort Independence in June 18 15, and was discharged and pensioned in the same month for total disability. He married at the age of sixty, in 183 1, to Maria Hamilton, aged twenty. They were the parents of six children: Benjamin, Willliam, James, Sarah, Annie and Rachel.
He died April 2, 1870, aged almost ninety-nine years the sole survivor of the expedition. He is buried at Brooke County Cemetery, at Wellsburg, West Virginia. He was the first to publish a journal of the expedition in 1807, seven years before the official Lewis and Clark journals were finally printed in 1814
- SERGEANT JOHN ORDWAY.
Born about 1775 at Dumbarton, New Hampshire. His parents and a brother, Stephen, lived near Hebron, New Hampshire, in the spring of 1804. He was recruited from Capt. Bissell’s 1st Infantry Company at Kaskaskia and went on Lewis and Clark’s payroll as of January 1, 18o4, though he was in charge of Camp du Bois much of the time before this date. He was educated and kept a journal which, after being lost for over a hundred years, was published in 1916. He was held in high esteem by his commanders. He kept the orderly books and held other important duties while on the expedition.
After the expedition returned in i8o6, he witnessed the sale on September 29, 1806, of John Collins and Joseph Whitehouse’s land warrants. He purchased the land warrants of his fellow members, William Werner and jean Baptiste La Page. He went to Washington with Captain Lewis and a party of Indians to show to the President, then he returned to New Hampshire for a time. In 1809 he returned to Missouri and settled in the Tywappity Bottom, near New Madrid, Missouri. He became an owner of extensive lands and attained some prosperity- having two plantations of peach and apple orchards. He married in Missouri, and he and his wife, Gracy, died in Missouri about 1817. They left no survivors.
- SERGEANT NATHANIEL HALE PRYOR.
Born in 1772, probably in Amherst County, Virginia. He was a son of John and Nancy (Floyd) Pryor. She was a sister of Robert Floyd, and Robert was the father of Charles Floyd – also a member of the expedition. Therefore, Pryor and Floyd were cousins. He moved with his parents in 1783 to Kentucky, and was recruited by Captain Clark on October 20, 18o3. He is usually listed as one of the “Nine young men from Kentucky.” He married on May 17, 1798, Miss Peggy Patton, so was one of the few married men of the expedition. His leaders stated, “He was a man of character and ability.” He probably kept a journal, but it has not yet been discovered. His journal is said to have been lost while enroute to France for publication. After the expedition returned, he was on e of the party who in 1807 attempted to return the Mandan Chief, Shahaka, to his homeland, but was prevented from doing so by the Arikara Indians. Nathaniel H. Pryor remained in the army and was a second lieutenant until i8io. He then entered the Indian trade on the upper Mississippi. In 1812 he was attacked at Fort Madison where he nearly lost his life. Two of his men were slain, but he escaped by crossing the ice of the Mississippi. He re-entered the army in 1813, and in 1814 he became a captain. He served in the Battle of New Orleans. Later, he was discharged and he then set up a trading post on the Arkansas River. He married an Osage girl, and they had several children who were all given Indian names. They lived among the Osages until his death on Jun e 1, 1831. He is buried at Pryor, Mayes County, Oklahoma, where a monument has been erected to his honor. He is not the same Nathaniel Pryor of Pattie’s Narrative. This was Nathaniel “Miguel” Pryor, born in Kentucky in 1798, and died in Los Angeles in 1850. The family relationship, if any, is not clear, for there were several other Nathaniel Pryors at this time.
- INTERPRETER, GEORGE DROUILLARD (DREWER; DREWYER).
Probably born at Sandwich, Canada, son of Pierre Drouillard of Detroit, and a Shawnee mother. His father had served with Kenton and as interpreter for George Rogers Clark at Fort McIntosh and at the Great Miami. George was in the U.S. Army at Fort Massac when he was transferred to Captain Lewis on November 11, 1803, after some resistance on the part of his commander who did not want to lose him. He was tall, straight, and had black hair and dark eyes. He was adept in the Indian sign language. He was always with one captain or the other in most emergencies and situations of danger where skill, nerve, endurance and cool judgement were needed.
After the expedition he lived for a few years at Cape Girardeau, Missouri. He bought the land warrants of John Collins and Joseph Whitehouse, which, with other land, he sold on April 3, 1807 for $1300.00. As he received $25.00 per month while he served with the expedition, he had the funds to make land purchases. He made a return trip to the Rocky Mountains and gave William Clark considerable topographical details of the mountain country which Clark incorporated into his map of the Northwest. He was killed by the Blackfeet Indians in i8io, not far from the area in Which he had the scrape with these Indians while he was with Captain Lewis when they made the exploration to the upper Maria’s River. He was with the Manuel Lisa party when he met his death.
- PRIVATE WILLIAM E. BRATTON (BRATTEN).
Born, July 27, 1778, in Augusta County, Virginia, of Irish parentage. He probably is a son of George Bratton, or of George’s brother, James, who were sons of Capt. Robert Bratton and his wife, Mrs. Annie (McFarland) Dunlap. Robert Bratton came to America from Donegal, Ireland, about 1740, and later settled in Cowpasture, Augusta County, Virginia. I give these clues to William’s ancestry because there is yet some confusion as to just which of the brothers was William’s father.
It is reported William’s family migrated to Kentucky about 1790, and on October 20, 1803, William enlisted under William Clark for the expedition. Hence he is usually listed as one of the “Nine young men from Kentucky.” His middle name may be Elliott, for it appears this was his mother’s name. This “E” was adopted during his Indiana years to distinguish him from another William Bratton, probably his cousin, who also lived near Waynetown, Indiana, and with whom he has often been confused.
William E. Bratton was over six feet tall, square of build, very straight and erect, rather reserved, economical, of fine intelligence and the strictest morals. At an early age he was apprenticed to a blacksmith, possibly his father, or uncle, James, and later became an excellent gunsmith and blacksmith on the expedition. In these capacities, and as a hunter, he was a useful man.
After the expedition had reached the mouth of the Columbia River in November 1805, Bratton and four companions were assigned to salt making at the seashore. They produced enough salt for the expedition’s winter requirements as well as enough to last them for the return trip to the states. While working at this exposed task, Bratton became seriously ill of lumbago. He became so weak that he could hardly walk, although the captains did everything in their power to help him. At long last, on May 24, 1806, an Indian steam bath was constructed as a forlorn hope of saving his life. This proved effective, and soon Bratton was able to resume his duties. Bratton’s conscientious service was attested to by the discharge he received at the end of the expedition.
After the expedition, Bratton returned to Kentucky. He lived there for a time, but returned to Missouri where he lived near John Ordway for a few years. He enlisted from Kentucky for the War of 1812, and was one of those surrendered at Frenchtown (now Monroe, Michigan) on January 22, 1813. He sold his warrant for land to a Mr. Samuel Barclay in 1816.
When aged forty-one, he married on November 25, 1819, Miss Mary H. Maxwell (1796-1875) and they resided for a time at Greenville, Ohio. By the year 1822, in June, William located on some land at Waynetown, Indiana. They were the parents of eight sons and two daughters, one of whom, Griselda Ann, married a Mr. Stephen Fields. It was she who gave the first brief biographical data to Olin D. Wheeler, who incorporated this data into his roster found in his The Trail of Lewis and Clark. William E. Bratton was elected the first justice of the peace of Wayne township in June 1824, and he served in that capacity for five years. Meanwhile he raised his large family, and now the many Bratton descendants are spread over the United States. Apparently one of the sons, S. Bratton, came to California during the gold rush of 1849.
William E. Bratton died November 11, 1841, at Waynetown, Indiana, and is buried in the pioneer cemetery there. A monument marks the final resting place of this important man.
- PRIVATE JOHN COLLINS.
Collins was born in Frederick County, Maryland. His army unit is unknown, but as he went on the muster roll as of January 1, 1804, he was possibly transferred from Capt. Russell Bissell’s Company. He was one of the best hunters of the party. While at Camp du Bois, Captain Clark once .noted him as a “blackguard,” perhaps because he killed a farmer’s pig, and then claimed it was “bear meat.” Later this cloud was removed by most excellent service throughout the voyage. He sold his warrant for land to George Drouillard, in September 1806, for $300.00 in cash. He was killed while with Ashley in a fight with the Arikara on June 2, 1823. He may be the John Collins who married Elisabeth Yager of Madison County, Virginia, and who later returned to Missouri.
- PRIVATE JOHN COLTER (COALTER; COULTER).
Born about 1774, near Staunton, Augusta County, Virginia. He was a son of Joseph and Ellen (Shields) Colter and a grandson of Micajah Coalter. When he was about five years old, his parents moved to Maysville, Kentucky. John spent his boyhood in Maysville and as a young man he probably served as a Ranger under Simon Kenton.
He was five feet ten inches tall; rather shy; had blue eyes; an open pleasing countenance; was quick minded, courageous and a fine hunter. He was recruited by Captain Lewis at Maysville on October 15, 1803 – one of the “Nine young men from Kentucky” and a permanent member of the expedition. He was trusted with many special missions while with the party.
When the expedition was enroute home, Colter was honorably discharged on August 13, 1806. He returned to the Yellowstone with Forest Handcock and Joseph Dickson, free trappers from Missouri and Illinois. Colter had probably known both men during his Maysville days. The partnership with Handcock and Dickson lasted only some six weeks, for a falling out had occurred. Colter and Handcock returned to the Mandans during October 1806, and they spent the winter there. In the spring of 1807, Colter started for St. Louis alone, and by July he was at the mouth of the Platte River when he encountered, and joined, Manuel Lisa’s trapping party bound for the Yellowstone. They arrived there in October 1807, and Lisa immediately dispatched Colter to the Crow Indians t hen on the Bighorn River. During 1808-1809, Colter trapped the area around the Stinking Water (Shoshoni) River.
By May 1809, Colter had returned to St. Louis. He sold his military warrant for land, probably to the land speculator, John G. Comegys. Colter soon signed up with Andrew Henry whose trapping expedition was headed for the upper Missouri. Colter was sent with a party to trap the rich beaver country of the Blackfeet Indians. Because of his past friendship with the Crows-mortal enemies of the Blackfeet – Colter was forced into a conflict with the latter. He escaped from the Blackfeet in the famous encounter in which another Lewis and Clark member, John Potts, was killed.
Colter now had enough of the mountains and returned to St. Louis. Back in Missouri, probably in early 1811, he married a woman named “Sallie.” Mrs. Dye, in The Conquest, page 3 IT, states, “Coalter -married a squaw.” Other traditions say she was a whit e woman. Whichever, they settled on a farm near Charette, Franklin County, Missouri. They had a son, Hiram Colter, who became the father of eight children.
John Colter died about November 22, 1813. Dr. E. B. Trail writes that according to local tradition, Colter was buried in a cemetery near Dundee, Missouri, on Tunnel Hill, which was located between the Big and Little Boeuf creeks. A railroad cut was later made which eliminated all trace of this cemetery. The remains were said to have been scattered along the railroad fill. However, in the collections of the St. Charles Historical Society are the books of the Fee Fee Baptist Church Records. An entry is written, “John Colter -a fur trader with Manuel Lisa.” A tombstone, said to have been in the church cemetery, read:
Here lies John Colter
of Lewis and Clark Expedition
Born in 1775 in Va.
Died 1813 of jaundice
This church and cemetery are at Bridgeton, Missouri, not far from Colter’s farm at Charette. No trace of the tombstone has yet been found.
While William Clark was putting finishing touches to his map of the Northwest to accompany the long delayed publication of the Lewis and Clark journals, John Colter supplied many new details gleaned from his travels into the Yellowstone, Wind River and other mountain areas not known to Clark.
On May 28, 1811, Colter sought, but could not collect, $377.60 from the insolvent estate of Meriwether Lewis, deceased. This amount was probably due Colter as extra pay for service during the expedition. After Colter died, his household furnishings were auctioned on December 10, 1813, and brought $124.441/2. Sallie, his wife, received an additional $69.00 on January 9, 1815. She had remarried, but died after 1822.
- PRIVATE JOSEPH FIELDS (FIELD).
Born about 1774, perhaps in Culpeper County, Virginia. He may have been a grandson of Abraham Field, Jr., who married a Miss Byrd and lived in Culpeper County. One of the sons of Abraham was Col. John Field, born in Culpeper. John married, Anna Rogers Clark, an older sister of William Clark. Colonel Field served under George Washington in the Braddock campaign. He lost his life in the Battle of Point Pleasant in October 1774, for which services his heirs were granted a large tract of land in Bourbon Count y, Kentucky. Another brother, Reuben, served in the 8th and 4th Virginia Regiments, and was present at the surrender of Cornwallis. John had eleven children, and our Joseph and Reuben may have been his sons, or the sons of the brother, Reuben.”
Joseph and Reuben Fields therefore may have been known to Captain Lewis before their enlistment with him on August 1, 1803 – two of the very earliest. They were probably raised in Kentucky and each is listed as one of the “Nine young men from Kentucky.” They served the expedition as two of its most valuable men until discharge on October 10, 1806. Both were excellent woodsmen-hunters and were usually involved in every duty of exploration and trust while on the expedition. Joseph was in charge of a small party which explored the lower Yellowstone River. After the expedition, Joseph received a warrant for land located in Franklin County, Missouri. William Clark noted he was dead by 1825-28.”
- PRIVATE REUBEN FIELDS (FIELD).
Born about 1772, probably in Culpeper County, Virginia. A brother of Joseph, above. Much of the same biographical data applies.
After the expedition, Captain Clark recommended Reuben for a lieutenancy in the army, which suggests that Reuben was older than Joseph. Reuben also received a warrant for land in Missouri, but he returned to Kentucky to live. In 1808, in Indiana, he married Mary Myrtle, daughter of John and Phoebe Myrtle of Jefferson County, Kentucky. Reuben died in late 1822 in Jefferson County, Kentucky, his will being probated on January 14, 1823.
- PRIVATE GEORGE GIBSON.
Born in Mercer County, Pennsylvania, but was probably raised in Kentucky for he is listed as one of the “Nine young men from Kentucky.” He was a fine hunter, horseman and also played the violin. Sgt. Ordway states that he was an interpreter and the re was some rivalry between him and Drouillard in this capacity. He married after the expedition, but died in St. Louis in 18og. He may have been one of the party under Sgt. Pryor who attempted to return Chief Shahaka to his home in 1807, and may have bee n wounded then by the Arikara.
- PRIVATE SILAS GOODRICH (GUTHRICH).
Born in Massachusetts. He may have been related to the Elisha Goodrich who was a land owner in St. Charles, Missouri, in 1799. His army unit is unknown, but he was transferred as of January 1, 1804, to the Lewis and Clark command. He was the fisherman of the party whose efforts very often supplied a change of diet for the men. After the expedition, he re-enlisted in the army. Clark notes he was dead by 1825-1828.
- PRIVATE HUGH HALL.
Born about 1772 in Carlisle, Pennsylvania. He was recruited from Capt. John Campbell’s 2nd Infantry Company. He was five feet eight inches in height, had grey eyes, fair hair and a sandy complexion. Clark notes that he drank and was one of the more adventuresome of the party. He is reported in St. Louis in 1809 and was living in 1828.
- PRIVATE THOMAS PROCTOR HOWARD.
Born in 1779 and raised in Brimfield, Massachusetts. He had blue eyes, fair hair and complexion. Clark says “he never drank water.” He was recruited from Capt. John Campbell’s 2nd Infantry Company and was entered on the Lewis and Clark muster as of January 1, 1804. A private named Thomas Howard, served as boatman, and left Fort Adams in May 1808, under Capt. H. Stark, U.S. 1st Infantry. He served for a time at Fort Adams. He married Genevieve Roy in St. Louis and had a son, Joseph, who was in the fur trade with Ashley in 1827. During the years 1834 to 1849, Joseph Howard was on the upper Missouri.
- PRIVATE HUGH McNEAL (NEEL; NIEL; O’NALL).
He was born and raised in Pennsylvania, but probably lived in Kentucky at time of enlistment. He was an excellent hunter and a faithful man to the expedition. A man of this name was in the 1st Infantry in August 1803, when that unit went up the Mississippi to establish Fort Madison. Hugh McNeal apparently remained in the army for he is on the muster rolls as of September 18 11. Clark lists him as dead by 1825-1828.
- PRIVATE JOHN NEWMAN.
Born in Pennsylvania, son of Walter N. and Catherine (Zimmerman) Newman. He was recruited from Capt. Daniel Bissell’s 1st Infantry Company. He was powerful, strong willed and quick tempered. While enroute up the Missouri with the expedition, he made mutinous remarks, but afterwards did all he could to atone. He was with the return party in 1805 and was of valuable help in handling the keelboat. After the expedition he married, on July 5, 1832, Olympia Dubreuil, daughter of Antoine and Elisabeth (Paran) Dubreuil of St. Louis. He traded on the upper Missouri during the years 1834 to 1838. He was killed by the Yankton Sioux in the spring of 1838.
- PRIVATE JOHN POTTS.
Born about 1776 in Dillenburg, Germany. He had been a miller. Had black hair, blue eyes, and a fair complexion. He was recruited from Capt. Purdey’s Company and joined the expedition on November 24, 1803. After the expedition he joined Manuel Lisa’s trapping party of 1807 to the upper Missouri. At Fort Raymond on July 6, 1808, he with Peter Weiser and Forest Handcock, signed a note promising to pay Manuel Lisa the amount of $424.50, apparently for trapping supplies furnished by Lisa. In 1810 he was a member of Andrew Henry’s party to the Three Forks of the Missouri. Here he again met John Colter, where they were attacked by the Blackfeet, and John Potts was killed. His estate was sued by Lisa, Menard and Morrison Fur Company for $1,000.00 past debts.
- PRIVATE MOSES B. REED (READ).
Not much known of this man. Apparently he was not valued for he once deserted while enroute up the Missouri, and as a result he was transferred to the return party of 18o5. He drew extra pay from January 1 to February 13, 1805, for $7.00, which was in addition to his pay for service from date of enlistment. In the original manuscript of the Lewis and Clark journals someone has written “Moses B. Reed?” after the name of John Boley, but it is evident that these were two different men.
- PRIVATE GEORGE SHANNON.
Born in 1785 in Pennsylvania, hence only eighteen when he joined Captain Lewis at Maysville, Kentucky, on October 13, 1803. His family had moved to Belmont County, Ohio, in 1800. He is listed as one of the “Nine young men from Kentucky.” His brother, William, later was a member of Congress from Ohio. George was Protestant-Irish, a good singer, hunter and horseman. He frequently was lost, but always managed to get back to the main party.
After the expedition, in 1807, he was one of the force under Ensign Nathaniel Pryor which attempted to return Chief Shahaka to his home among the Mandans. While the party was halted by the Arikara, Shannon was shot in the leg, which, after much suffering, had to be amputated at St. Charles, Missouri. In 1803 he was in St. Louis, and in 1813, by an act of Congress, was pensioned for the loss of his leg. During 1810 he assisted Nicholas Biddle edit the Lewis and Clark journals, and undoubtedly added some details to their notes. In 1813 he married Miss Ruth Snowden Price of Lexington, Kentucky. Clark offered him an opportunity to go into the fur business with him and others, and suggested that the firm be known as “George Shannon & Company.” Shannon, however, elected to study law at Transylvania University of Kentucky – and also at Philadelphia. By 1818 he was practicing law at Lexington, Kentucky. He was elected a member of the Kentucky House of Representatives in i82o and 1822. He sold his land warrants for 32o acres to Hon. Henry Clay, who later helped him on many occasions. After his Kentucky year s, he practiced law in Missouri. He was a senator from Missouri for a time, and then returned to law. He died suddenly in court at Palmyra, Missouri, in 1836, aged forty-nine, and is buried in that city.”
- PRIVATE JOHN SHIELDS.
Born in 1769 near Harrisonburg, Augusta County, Virginia. Being aged thirty-five, he appears to be the oldest man of the round-trip party. He was the son of Robert and Nancy (Stockton) Shields, the sixth son and one of ten brothers and an older sister. In 1784, his parents emigrated to Pidgeon Forge in what is now Sevier County, Tennessee. Here John ran a mill and a blacksmith shop for his brother-in-law, Samuel Wilson. About 1790, he married Nancy __________ , and they had a daughter, Janette. John Shields enlisted in the expedition on October 13, 1803, in Kentucky, and is considered one of the “Nine young men from Kentucky.” He was one of the most valuable men on the expedition, as he was the head blacksmith, gunsmith, boat builder and general repair man for anything needed. His blacksmith work helped keep the party in corn and other foodstuffs for much of the winter and spring of 1804-05.
When the expedition returned, Captain Lewis wrote: “Shields had received the pay of only a private. Nothing was more particularly useful to us, in various situations, in repairing the guns, accoutrements, etc., and should it be thought proper to allow him something [extra] as an artificer, he has well deserved it.” In i8o6 he received $180.00 in back pay, and in 1807, $178-50 in extra pay (as did the others), plus a warrant for land located in Franklin County, Missouri. After the expedition, he spent a year trapping with his kinsman, Daniel Boone, in Missouri, and the following year with Squire Boone in Indiana. He died in December 1809, and is probably buried among some of his brothers in “Little Flock Baptist Burying Grounds,” south of Corydon, Harrison County, Indiana. His wife Nancy, survived him. Their only daughter, Janette, married her cousin, John Tipton, and they left descendants. John Tipton was an executor of his will.”
- PRIVATE JOHN B. THOMPSON.
Place of birth unknown, but he lived in Indiana. He was a former surveyor at Vincennes, Indiana, and it can be imagined that he was of some assistance to Captain Lewis’ celestial observations, and of Captain Clark’s map-making. In addition to other duties, he often served as a cook while on the expedition. Clark notes that he was dead by the years 1825-1828.
- PRIVATE WILLIAM WERNER (WARNER).
He was probably born in Kentucky and enlisted from an unknown army unit. He was one of the salt makers and cooks of the party. After the expedition, on March 11, 1807, Governor Lewis advanced him $30-75, and a horse, saddle, etc., valued at $44-50, which Lewis directs Gen. Clark to deduct from the extra pay due Werner “if he has sold or given the horse away. If the horse died not through his negligence – then do not deduct.” He assisted General Clark for a time as Indian Agent in Missouri. In 1828 he is reported to be in Virginia.
- PRIVATE JOSEPH WHITEHOUSE.
Joseph Whitehouse was born about 1775, probably in Fairfax County, Virginia. About 1784, he and his family migrated to Kentucky. They seem to have located in Boyle and Mercer counties, Kentucky. Captain Clark lists him as one of the “Nine young men from Kentucky” which would indicate that he grew up in that state.
As a young man, he enlisted in the U.S. Army and during one period was stationed at Kaskaskia, Illinois Territory, where he had frequent contact with the traders who trafficked with the Indians on the lower Missouri River. This was a favorite subject o f interest to Whitehouse, so when he heard that recruits for the Lewis and Clark expedition were sought, he located the captains with the hope of joining them.
He was transferred from Capt. Daniel Bissell’s Company, then at Fort Massac, to the expedition and was entered on the rolls of Lewis and Clark as of January 1, 1804. This would appear to mean that Whitehouse, and the other members recruited from other military commands, had remained on the pay-roll of their former units until December 31, 1803, when they were entered upon the pay-roll of the Lewis and Clark Expedition.
The Lewis and Clark journals frequently mention Whitehouse as a “hide-curer” and a “tailor, ” and record that he often made and repaired the clothes of the men.
After the expedition returned, Whitehouse sold his warrant for land of 160 acres to George Drouillard for $280.00. In 1807, a St. Louis court ordered him arrested for debt. Clark, in his account of the members made during the years 1825-1828, lists the name, Joseph Whitehouse, without comment. This could mean that Clark did not then know the whereabouts of Whitehouse – or that he may still have been living then.
Joseph Whitehouse kept a journal while on the expedition. A portion, apparently the field notes, or actual diary, is printed in Thwaites’ edition of the Lewis and Clark journals. Recently a revised version of Whitehouse’s journal has been found and now is in the Newberry Library of Chicago. This version has an entry for November 17, 1803, but properly begins with the date, May 14, 1804, when the expedition set out, and ends on April 6, i8o6 when the expedition was on the lower Columbia, homeward bound. It would appear that Whitehouse, during the fall of 1806, prepared, or had prepared for him, a new, expanded journal with the thought of having it published. He included a preface and announced that his volume would contain a map. T his new version is to be published under the able editorship of Dr. Donald Jackson.
- PRIVATE ALEXANDER HAMILTON WILLARD.
Born August 24, 1778, at Charlestown, New Hampshire. He was an only son of Jonathan and Betty (Caswell) Willard. Five feet ten inches tall, brown hair, dark eyes, dark complexion and of fine physique. He was living in Kentucky at time of enlistment from C apt. Amos Stoddard’s Artillery Company. He went on Lewis and Clark’s payroll as of January 1, 1804. He was a good blacksmith, gunsmith and fine hunter. He may have kept a journal, yet to be located. He married in 1807, Eleanor McDonald of Shelbyville, Kentucky, and they were the parents of seven sons (one of whom was named Lewis, and another Clark), and five daughters. They have left many descendants. In 1808 he worked as a blacksmith in Missouri. He served in the War of 1812. From 1824 to 1852 he lived a t Plattesville and at Elk Grove, Wisconsin. In 1852 he and his family migrated by covered wagon to California, where he died in 1865, aged eighty-seven. He is buried at Franklin, near Sacramento, California. His wife, Eleanor, died June 11, 1868, aged seventy-eight. He and Sgt. Gass lived during the discovery of photography, and is the only member of whom a photographic likeness is known.
- PRIVATE RICHARD WINDSOR (WINSER; WINSOR).
Place of birth unknown. He enlisted in Kentucky and was on the Lewis and Clark muster roll as of January 1, 1804, which suggests that he was recruited from some military unit, perhaps that of Capt. Russell Bissell. He was a useful man on the expedition and was usually with the hunting parties. After the expedition, he settled for a time in Missouri, but later re-enlisted in the army where he served until i8ig. From 1825 to 1829 he was living on the Sangamon River in Illinois.
- PRIVATE PETER M. WEISER (WISER; WYSER; WYZER).
Born, October 3, 1781, in Pennsylvania of German descent and probably a descendant of the noted Conrad Weiser. His father was John Phillip Weiser, born 1755; and grandfather, Peter, born 1730, was a son of Conrad. He was enlisted as of January 1, 1804, probably recruited from Capt. Russell Bissell’s Company. He was often a quartermaster, cook and hunter on the expedition. After the expedition returned, he, with John Colter and John Potts, joined Manuel Lisa’s party in 1807 to the upper Missouri. In Jul y 1808, he was in Fort Raymond, where, with John Potts and Forest Handcock, they executed a note for $424-50 payable to Manuel Lisa. Between 1808 and 1810 he was on the Three Forks of the Missouri, and on the Snake River. He was killed prior to the years 1825 – 1828. The town of Weiser, and the Weiser River in Idaho, are named for him.
- CORPORAL RICHARD WARFINGTON (WORTHINGTON; WORBINGTON; etc.).
He was born in 1777 at Louisburg, North Carolina, and was transferred from Capt. John Campbell’s 2nd Infantry Company on May 14, 1804. He was on Lewis and Clark’s payroll until June 1, 1805, when he had returned to St. Louis in charge of the “return” party members from Fort Mandan. He was five feet ten inches tall, had brown hair, black eyes, fair complexion. After the expedition he returned to his original military company. Some time later he was discharged after serving his enlistment agreement.
- PRIVATE JOHN BOLEY (BOLEYE; BOYLEY; BOLYE).
He was probably born at Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, but at time of enlistment was living at Kaskaskia, Illinois. His father, John Boley, Sr., came to St. Louis in 1794 from Pittsburgh. His mother, Sophia (Shaffer) Boley, had six children: John, Henry, Willi am, Elisabeth, Marian and Sarah. John Jr., was a highly spirited young man and was one of those cited f or misconduct while at Camp du Bois. He was one of the return party of i8oS. On August 9, i8oS he joined Zebulon Pike’s expedition to the sources of the Mississippi, and went again with him in i8o6 to the Rocky Mountains. He was with the party that descended the Arkansas River and arrived in New Orleans in February 1807. His parents home place at Meramac, Missouri, became his property at their death. He is said to have been with the Bissell brothers expedition to the mountains. He and his wife were living at Carondelet in October 1823
- PRIVATE JOHN DAME.
Born in 1784 at Pallingham, New Hampshire. Five feet nine inches in height, blue eyes, light hair and fair complexion. He was recruited from Capt. Amos Stoddard’s Company at Kaskaskia. He was mentioned in the journals because he killed a pelican on August 7, while enroute up the Missouri.
- PRIVATE ROBERT FRAZIER (FRASURE; FRAZURE; FRAZER).
For many years Robert Frazier has been reported as being born in Vermont, and was a former fencing master. There was a Robert Frazier living in Brattleboro, Vermont, in 1834. However, recent research indicates that our Robert Frazier was born in Augusta County, Virginia, a descendant of the Frazier family long resident in that and Rockingham County.
He was a valuable man on the expedition, and was transferred from the extra party to the permanent party in the spring of 1805. He kept a journal which he intended to publish, but it has become lost. His map of the Northwest, which was intended to be issued with his journal, is now in the Library of Congress – a quarter section of which is published in this work.
After the expedition he accompanied Captain Lewis to Washington and Virginia, and then returned to St. Louis. On October 6, 1 8o6, the captains gave him a bond for land with the citation: “That said Robert Frazier, having faithfully complied with the several stipulations of his agreement, the undersigned . . . … He served with the Louisiana Militia against the Aaron Burr plotters in St. Louis and New Orleans. He was reported in several scrapes with the law in St. Louis until the year 1815. From 1825 to 1829 he was living on or near the Gasconade River in Missouri. He died in Franklin County, Missouri, in 1837.
- PRIVATE JOHN G. ROBERTSON (ROBINSON).
Born about 1780 in New Hampshire. He was a shoemaker and was transferred from Capt. Amos Stoddard’s Company at Kaskaskia on October 1, 1803. He was cited for disorderly conduct while at Camp du Bois. He started with the expedition but was dismissed on Jun e 12, 1804, less than a month after it had started. He was returned to St. Louis and he probably rejoined his original unit in Capt. Stoddard’s Infantry. Later, he may have been the same John G. (Jack) Robertson, “an old Ashley man and whisky peddler, and partner with Antoine Robidoux in the 183os. He is reported to have been a fur trader for forty years – from 1825 to 1865. On August 3, 1837, he wrote to his mother, Mrs. S. Robertson, then living at Owens Station, Missouri, from Green River (Wyoming). In this letter h e states that he had intended to come home, but had re-engaged with William Sublette and Andrew Drips as a partner in a trading company. In another letter dated Fort John (Laramie), May 24, 1849, from Andrew Drips to Bruce Husband, Robertson is reported a t that place.”
- PRIVATE EBENEZER TUTTLE.
Born in 1774 at New Haven, Connecticut. He was recruited from Capt. Amos Stoddard’s Company. Five feet seven inches tall, blue eyes, brown hair and of fair complexion. Before his army service he had been a farmer.
- PRIVATE ISAAC WHITE.
Born in 1777 at Holliston, Massachusetts. He was recruited from Capt. Amos Stoddard’s Company. Five feet seven and a half inches tall, sandy hair and fair complexion.
- PRIVATE PIERRE CRUZATTE (CRUZAT; CRUSATTE; CROUZATT; CROISETTE).
Half French and half Omaha, he probably was a descendant from the Cruzatte family who were early settlers of St. Louis. Obviously his father had lived among the Omaha at an early date. He enlisted with Lewis and Clark on May 16, i8o4. Pierre had formerly been a trader on the Missouri for the Chouteaus before enlisting. He could speak the Omaha language and was skilled in sign-talk, so was of valuable assistance to the captains at the Indian councils and encounters with the tribes on the lower Missouri. He was a small man, wiry, had but one eye and was nearsighted. He was called “St. Peter” by the men as a nickname. Like the other regular men, he was awarded extra pay and a land grant after the expedition’s return. H e was killed by 1825-1828.
- PRIVATE JEAN BAPTISTE DECHAMPS (DESCHAMPS).
Probably a son of jean Baptiste Deschamps and Marie Pinot. He may be the same jean Baptiste Deschamps, Jr., who with his wife, Marie Anne Baguette, dit Langevin, were the parents of jean Baptiste, ill, baptized at St. Charles, August 15, 1792.
Our Jean seems to have been recruited at Kaskaskia and was the patron, or head Waterman of one of the pirogues.
- PRIVATE JOSEPH BARTER (LALIBERTE; LE BARTEE; JO BARTER).
He was recruited at Kaskaskia. He deserted the expedition early on the voyage and was not found thereafter. He probably remained among the Otoe for a few years. Andrew Henry,” lists a “La Liberte” at Fort Gage, Canada, in September 1799. If this is the same man, he may have drifted down the Missouri and lived among the Otoe Indians a year or two before joining Lewis and Clark.
Milo Quaife, editor of the Ordway journal, suggests that he may be the Joab Barton who died near Jefferson City, Missouri, about 1820. Mr. Anton J. Pregaldin informs me “that a Canadian named Joseph La Liberte married a colored woman called Julie Villa ge at St. Louis, January I I) 183 S. La Liberte, aged 60, probably the same man, was buried at St. Louis, May 31, 1837.
- PRIVATE FRANCOIS (WILLIAM) LABICHE (LA BUCHE; LA BEICHE; LA BUISH).
He was recruited at Kaskaskia and was half-French and half-Omaha. He served as interpreter and as patron of one of the pirogues. Adept in French, English and several Indian languages, he was of considerable value to the expedition. As he was also an excellent tracker, hunter and waterman, he was elected to be one of the permanent party.
After the expedition, he went to Washington as interpreter to the group of Indians accompanying Captain Lewis.
A Francois Labuche and his wife, Genevieve Flore, baptized seven children at St. Louis between 1811 and 1834. It appears that Labiche and Labuche were both nicknames. The proper family name is probably Milhomme. Among other things, Labiche meant “the doe,” while Labuche meant “the log” or a “heavy fall.” Most of the family around St. Louis used Labuche.” Our Francois was alive in St. Louis, or nearby, after 1828.
- PRIVATE JEAN BAPTISTE LA JEUNNESSE (LA GUNESS; LA JUENESS).
Probably a son of Ambrose and Marie (Boyet) La Jeunnesse of St. Rose, Quebec, Canada. He had married at St. Louis, July 9, 1797, Elisabeth Malbeuf and they were the parents of: Reine, born 1801; Jean Baptiste, Jr., born 1803; and Marie Louise, born 1807. All were baptized at St. Charles. He apparently died in late i8o6, for his wife married a Mr. Poirier of St. Charles on September 13, 1807-Jt may be his son, jean Baptiste, Jr., who is buried in St. Paul Parish, Oregon.
As shown above, La Jeunnesse was another of the married men of the expedition. There were several other La Jeunnesse families but it probably was his nephew, Basil, born June25, 1814, at St. Louis, son of Jacques and Helene Le Vasseur, who accompanied Fremont on his first and second expeditions to the west in 1842-1843.”
- ENGAGE ETIENNE MALBOEUF (MABBAUF; MALBEUF; MALLAT).
He was from Lac de Sable, Canada – a brother-in-law of La Jeunnesse, above. His father, Francois Malbeuf, baptized at least seven children by two or three Indian women. Elisabeth, his daughter by Angelique, a Mandan woman, was baptized at St. Charles in 1 797 and married jean Baptiste La Jeunnesse two months later on July 9, 1797. Etienne was baptized at St. Charles on December 26, 1792, but no age nor date of birth is given in the Parish Register. He must have been born about 1775 as he was old enough to serve as godfather to a child of his sister, Elisabeth, and her husband, jean Baptiste La Jeunnesse, in i8o2. By 18o4 Etienne was living in Kaskaskia where he was hired for the expedition. Wages were paid for this employment under Captain Lewis on October 4, 1805.
- ENGAGE PETER PINAUT (CHARLES PINEAU?).
Probably a son of Joseph Pineau and a Missouri Indian woman. He was born “in the woods” about 1776, and was baptized at St. Louis in 1790.” He was listed on May 26, 1804, as a member of the party and did start with the expedition. He may have been sent back to St. Louis on June 137 1804, along with John Robertson, in Pierre Dorion’s returning raft crew, as h e is not mentioned as being with the expedition thereafter.
- ENGAGE PAUL PRIMEAU (PRIMAUT).
He was from Chateauguay, Canada, son of Joseph and Louise (Lalumiere) Primeau. He married Pelagie Bissonet at St. Louis on November 18, 1799.” Among their five sons and five daughters they had: Joseph Endlion and Charles, both of whom were later traders o n the upper Missouri.
Paul was hired for the expedition at Kaskaskia, and is mentioned as a member on May 26, 1804- In 1807 he was in debt to George Drouillard and Manuel Lisa in the amount of $292.05, which seems to have been paid back in i8o8.
- ENGAGE FRANCOIS RIVET (REVEE; RIVES; RIVEY; REEVEY, etc.).
Born near Montreal, Canada, in 1757, he was hired at Kaskaskia. Rivet was the man who “danced on his head” at the Mandan parties. He, with three others, DeChamps, Malboeuf and Carson, seem to be the four engagees who, after being discharged, built a hut o f their own next to Fort Mandan, and remained there under the protection of the expedition during the winter of I804-OS- (Thwaites, vol. I, P. 2~4-)
In the spring of i8oS, Rivet and Philippe Degie-who had attached himself to the party on October 18, 1804 built a canoe of their own and descended the Missouri with Warfington’s return party as far as the Arikara nation.
When Lewis and Clark returned from the Pacific in 1806, they found Francois Rivet among the Mandans. He was in the Flathead country in March 1810, and may have gone with the Charles Courtin party to the upper Columbia River country a few years before that date.
He was an interpreter for Alexander Ross on the Snake Expedition of 1824, and was at Flathead Post in 1825. He is reported to have been at Fort Colville for “forty years as a sort of confidential man and blacksmith” where he worked for the Hudson’s Bay Company. “Here I found an old man, who thirty years before had accompanied Lewis and Clark across the continent, and for several years past, resided here at Fort Colville. He is in the employ of the Fur Company and acts as an interpreter to the neighboring Indians.””
He did not accompany Lewis and Clark across the continent but only as far as the Mandans. In later life, Francois Rivet lived in the Willamette Valley, Oregon, where he died September 16 or 26, 1852, at St. Paul Parish, aged ninety-five.
- ENGAGE PETER (PIERRE?) ROI (ROY; ROIE; LE ROY; etc.).
The identity of this man is difficult to define as there were so many of the same name (Roi and Roy) among the early settlers. In fact, this family was descended from a line of pioneers of French and Indian blood who had settled in the Illinois country even before Laclede had founded St. Louis in 1764. These adventuresome people came from Montreal and Quebec. One was Pierre Roy who married Marie Jeanne La Lande at Ste. Genevieve (later Missouri) on January 27, 1776. They had a son, Pierre, born April 27, 1786. This could be our man, though not yet proven.
- ENGAGE CHARLES CAUGEE.
Listed by Captain Clark in his Field Notes on July 4, 1804, as one of the nine engagees hired. Unfortunately nothing more has been found regarding him.
- ENGAGE ALEXANDER CARSON (CARRN; CARSN; CARN; CARR; CANE; E. CANN).
Born about 1775, possibly in Mississippi. He was a son of Alexander Carson, Sr., who probably was an older brother of Lindsey, father of the famous “Kit” Carson. His grandparents were William and Eleanor (Cuff) Carson who, with their family, came to Pennsylvania about 1755 and to North Carolina in 176o. His father settled in Mississippi in 176o and it is possible that his son, in his formative years, lived so long among the French that he became known as a “French” engage. This theory may account for t he variants in the spelling of his name.
“Carr” and “Carr” are mentioned in the journals of Lewis and Clark on August 13 and 25, 1804, which definitely places someone of like name as a member of the party. He is of record as being in St. Louis in December i805, having had time to return with Warrington’s party.
Alexander Carson and the Ben Jones, mentioned in my introduction, wintered with the Arikara Indians in 1809-1810. Thwaites notes that “Alex. Carson was probably one of the party of expert riflemen who escorted back to his home in i8io, the Mandan chief, Shahaka, who three years before had accompanied Lewis and Clark to the east.” Other exmembers of Lewis and Clark also were of the Shahaka party -such as Shannon and Pryor.
He was one of the earliest settlers at Chernaway, Oregon, and is recorded as having been at Fort George and Fort Vancouver in the Hudson’s Bay Company account books of 1820-1821. Alexander Ross calls him a “gunsmith.” He was killed by Indians there in 1836 as previously related. An isolated hill known as “Aleck’s Butte,” located near Carlton, Oregon, is named for him.”
- ENGAGE CHARLES HEBERT (HEBERT dit CADIEN).
Perhaps a son of Charle Hebert and Ursule Forest, and a native of Prairie de la Madeleine, Canada. He married Julie Hubert dit La Croix, at St. Louis on September 11, 1792. Their eleven children were baptized either at St. Charles or at Portage des Sioux .”
Charles Hebert’s name appears on Captain Lewis’ list of engagees as of May 26, 1804. There is no record of wages paid him, so he was probably one of those hired, rather than enlisted, in the party, and was paid in cash by Captain Lewis when discharged at the Mandans in the winter of 1804.
- ENGAGE JOSEPH COLLIN.
There was a Joseph Collin, a son of Joseph and Marie (Dier) Collin of St. Genevieve de Montreal, Canada, who married Marie Louise Denis dit La Pierre, at Portage des Sioux, on July IS, i8l:8. She was a widow, having been married in 1790 to Louis Clermont, which would indicate the year of birth of our Joseph as about 1770.”
But Gass states in his journal that Joseph Collin “was a young man who formerly belonged to the North West Company.” Captain Lewis lists him as a member of the expedition as of May 26, 1804. It is possible that Collin went only as far as the Arikara. Ordway says (page 149) “we left one of our frenchmen with Tabbo [Antoine Tabeau] and took his Soon (Tabeau’s son) in his place.”
When the party returned from the Pacific they again met this man among the Arikara on August 21, 1806, and “as he wished to return [to St. Louis] the Captains consented” and he was taken along. (Gass, Aug. 22, 18o6.)
There is no record of wages paid him, so he was probably paid in cash by Captain Lewis, either at the Arikara or at the Mandans.
ALONG WITH THE EXPEDITION PARTY WERE:
Captain Lewis’ Newfoundland type dog. This animal was much admired by the natives for his sagacity and they frequently offered to trade for him – which Lewis always refused to do. He had paid $20.00 for him.
These were taken from St. Charles by the hunters to go along the river banks while the boats were being worked upstream. Three horses were lost enroute and the last one was stolen by the Teton Sioux on September 24, 1804. They were valuable to the expedition for they enabled the hunters, in addition to bringing in game, to explore inland from the Missouri. The information thus obtained was added to the captains’ written description of the creeks and country of the lower Missouri