Jedediah Smith’s Journal - First Expedition to California

7 Aug 1826 - 3 Jul 1827

August 7th 1826 at our rendezvous at a place known as the bend of Bear River. My Partners Messrs Jackson & Sublette and myself came to the conclusion that in order to Prosecute our Business advantageously it was necessary that our company Should be divided. We had at that time in all _ men.  It was decided that Messrs Jackson & Sublette should go north on to the waters of Lewises River and the Missouri with _ men  and that I should take the remainder of the men and go to the South.  Of the Country to the S & S W we knew comparatively little our travels having not extended more than 100 miles to the S and about the same distance to the South west.  What that great and unexplored country might contain we knew not but hoped to find parts of the country as well stocked with Beaver as some the waters of the Missouri which was perhaps as much as we could reasonably expect. In taking the charge of our S western Expedition I followed the bent of my strong inclination to visit this unexplored country and unfold those hidden resources of wealth and bring to light those wonders which I readily imagined a country so extensive might contain. I must confess that I had at that time a full share of that ambition (and perhaps foolish ambition) which is common in a greater or less degree to all the active world. I wanted  to be the first to view a country on which the eyes of a white man had never gazed and to follow the course of rivers that run through a new land.

Our arrangements being completed Messrs J & S moved on to the north and I struck of passing the Soda Spring and along the pummice stone valley to a small fork of the Port Neuff River  Here I encamped for the purpose of drying meat as the Buffalo were quite plenty and in fine order. I was well aware that to the south as if far as my acquaintance extended there was but little game and experience had learned me in many a severe lesson the necessity of providing a supply of provision for traveling in a gameless country. My Party consisted of 18 persons besides myself. Their names are as follows

Robeseauhalf breed U Canada
Nipisangof Nipisang Ind & B America
MarionUmpquah Ind a slave
Johna slave
Manuelnative Mexican
Harrison G. Rogersa Virginian
Martin McCoyKentuckian
Peter RanneyE Frenchman
Arthur BlackScotchman
John GaitherKentucky
John HannaMissouri
Abraham LaplantIndianna
Emmenuel LazarusGerman
Robert Evansould Ireland
Silas GobleOhio
John WilsonScotland
Daniel FergusonUnknown
James ReedNew York

I had 28 horses exclusive of those belonging to the free men.  I remained on Portneuff three days during which time the Party had dried three horse loads of most excellent meat. I then started for cache or willow valley to which place I was under the necessity of going to procure some things from our cache and to make some repairs on our Guns for at that place we had a sett of Black smith tools. crossing Bear River and making several days at quick traveling I arrived at the Cache on the 15th of August. found every thing safe at the Cache had some coal Burned a forge erected and my work underway as fast a possible. took such things as I wanted from the Cache and on the 18th of August I struck over west on to the Big Salt Lake then south crossing webers fork to the outlet of the Uta Lake then up the outlet to the Lake.*  (*No buffalo ever visit the Uta Lake in the vicinity are some Elk and deer.) On a creek in the vicinity found some Beaver Sign and near by some Indians of the Uta nation.  Understanding by them that the principal Chief  with his band was not far off I sent an Indian for him. I was anxious to see him and if possible persuade him to make a treaty with the snake Indians for they had been constantly at war. I likewise wished to procure some information as to the Country to the South. In two days the Indian returned. But the Chief could not be persuaded to come. He was afraid to leave his Band on account of the snakes who he was aprehensive might take the opportunity of his absence to make an attack. He sent word that if Beaver hunting was my object I had better pass his village as there were a good many beaver a short distance beyond where he then was. This I concluded to do and after three days travel from the Lake I arrived at his village on the 23d of August. The country through which we travelled was quite rough and mountainous. I found at that place about 35 lodges some of Skins and some of Brush. Each family has 4 or 5 horses. These Indians are constantly moving about like the snakes and at this time live almost entirely on Service Berries which are now ripe. I remained at this place Two days and concluded a treaty with these Indians by which the americans are allowed to hunt & trap in and pass through their country unmolested and the chief after mature deliberation declared he would go thus far towards making peace with the snakes that hostilities on his part should cease. I then told him that the Snakes had consented to an armistice until a meeting could be had between the two nations which on my return from my fall hunt I engaged to forward by every means in my power. I found these Indians more honest than any I had ever been with in the country. They appear to have verry little disposition to steal and ask for nothing unless it may be a little meat. As stealing and Begging are the most degrading features in the Indian character and as their prevalence is almost universal so to be exempt from then is no ordinary merit. The Uta's are cleanly quiet and active and make a nearer approach to civilized life than any Indians I have seen in the Interior. Their leggings and shirts which are made of the skins of the Deer Mt Sheep or Antelope are kept quite clean. As they sometimes visit the Buffalo Country they have robes. Their arms are like those of the Mountain Snakes Elk and Sheep horn Bows. Having some communication with the Spanish villages of Taos and Santa fee they have more guns than the snakes. At this place I saw a display of that savage disposition too prevalent among Indians. In camp were two Snake women just taken. One of them was brought by a party which came in with me. She was not more than 13 or fourteen years of age. Light complexion and tolerable good features. She was obliged to sleep with her master every night and carry his pack by day and as there was no game in the country she had to dig roots for his food. This barbarous treatment would have passed perhaps unnoticed (for it is common to all Barbarians) had it not been for the result which had the effect to fix it on my mind. As soon as we arrived at the village she was delivered to the squaws in company with one brought in from another direction. I made them a handsome present having been directed to do so by Genl. Ashley who acted in the capacity of a sub agent. I purchased 3 horses for which I paid a high price. Of the country to the South no satisfactory information could be obtained But 20 or 30 miles to the East they told me there were some Beaver. I determined to move on E having been at this place 2 days  The Indians moved on in the same direction and encamped with me the first night. The country extremely rough until ascending a considerable Mt we kept on the top of a ridge running Eastwardly.  The next day I left the indians and proceeding onwards a few miles came to a valley and a Creek about 20 yds wide running North East. At that place were some Beaver, so I remained there trapping 2 or 3 days. At this place I saw some verry old Buffalo sculls and from their appearance I would suppose that it is many years since the Buffalo left this country. they are not found beyond this place. I then moved on South having a high range of Mountains on the West and crossing a good many small streams running East into a large valley the valley of the Colorado. But having learned that the valley was verry barren and Rocky I did not venture into it. The country is here extremely rough little appearance of Indians and game quite scarce a few Mt Sheep and Antelope. after traveling in this direction 2 days the country looked so unpromising that I determined to strike westward to a low place in the Mountain and cross over. In crossing this mountain just as we were encamping I found an old squaw. (there had been several families at the place but they had run off at our approach). I prevailed on her to come to camp and one of the men gave her a Badger which I supposed she would take home to cook and eat. But the moment it was presented she caught it in her hands and exclaimed we are all friends* (*These indians speak a language similar to the Uta's and as I had men in my party that spoke the Uta I was enabled to hold some conversation with them. They call themselves Sanpach.) and immediately tore it in pieces and laid it on the coals. When it was about half cooked she commenced eating making no nice distinction between hair pelts entrails and meet. When she had finished her meal I made her some trifling presents and told her to go and tell her people that we were all friends and that I should be glad to see some of them. She left us and in the evening some men came to the camp. I gave them some presents and by enquiry heard of a river to the west and engaged one of them as a guide. After traveling three days from the place where I turned westward I came to the River of which the indian had spoken it was about 60 yds wide muddy water and runs N W.  This river I named Ashleys river in compliment to my friend the enterprising Genl. W H Ashley. Here I found some Beaver sign. The Indians at this place are rather above the midling size but in the mental scale lower than any I have yet seen. Their dress of Leggings and shirts is made of the skins of Deer Antelope and Mountain Sheep. In appearance and action they are strongly contrasted with the cleanliness of the Uta's. The inhabitants of this river are the two tribes of Pa-utch and Sam-pach. They appear to subsist entirely on Roots. The principal one is about the size of a parsnip with a leaf somewhat like the beat it grows on the richest upland.  They prepare them by laying them on heated Stones and covering them first with grass and then with earth where they remain until they are sufficiently steamed. They are then mashed fine and made into small cakes. For their winter provision they are dried. The language of the Uta's Sampach and Pa utch is similar.

I had not as good Luck in taking beaver at this place as I had expected from the sign. After remaining a day or two I moved on two short days travel up the River nearly N W the valley being 6 or 8 miles wide and covered with Sedge and But little grass except along the river. A few antelope but verry wild. Here I first saw the Black tailed hare. Darker colored and not quite as large as the common hare. The Indians of this river are not numerous and may well be called wild for we seldom get sight of them. They have a peculiar method of conveying intelligence of the approach of danger. Each family or set of families has a quantity of dry Sedge Bark and Brush piled up near the habitation and immediately on the approach of a Stranger they set fire to the pile and this being seen by their neighbor he does the same and the next the same so that the alarm flies over the hills in every direction with the greatest rapidity. As soon as they have apprised their neighbor of the approaching danger they take every thing they possess (which by the by is not much their provision being secreted) and throw it into a large Basket shaped like a sugar Loaf with a strap attached to the top which comes across the forehead and with the Basket on their back away they run to the hills for security --- As the Beaver were scarce and wild I determined to move on south again. Just above where I left the river a range of high hills cross the valley. I ascended a small creek coming in on the west side and at its head crossed a range of Mts and 3d short days travel Brought me into a low country on the west side of the Mt. some small streams flowing from the Mt which I had crossed and running West I followed down and was not a little surprised to find that they all sunk in the sand.  As it was useless for me to look for Beaver where there was no water I retraced my steps to where there was water and grass and encamped. On the following morning I started early and as the country look lowest to the S W we moved in that direction about 20 miles and to my great Surprise instead of a River an immense sand plain was before me where the utmost view with my Glass could not embrace any appearance of water. The only exception to this interminable waste of sand was a few detached rocky hills that rose from the surrounding plain and the stunted sedge that was thinly scattered over its surface. As it would not be advisable for me to push into a country of this description I retraced my steps and at a late hour at night found water near where I had encamped the night before. Several of my horses gave out before encamping and were left. The next day I sent back for the horses that were left the party remaining in the same camp I started early on a good horse to take a view of the country travelling South. The range of mt which I had crossed in coming from Ashleys R extended South becoming in that direction somewhat higher. They may be considered the verge of the desert on the East other boundaries remaining as yet undefined. I went about 15 miles and from a high hill with my Glass could discover trees where I supposed there must be a stream running from the Mt W so I returned to camp. The horses had been brought in in the course of the day and two or three Antelope had been killed. The next day made an early start and after a long days travel arrived at the place where I had seen the timber. Here I found a creek 20 yds wide running West with some little Beaver sign. The smoke telegraph was seen on the hills during the day as usual. There had it appeared been a good many families in the vicinity but they had fled not desiring to become acquainted with us. Two Indians had remained behind to gratify their curiosity trusting to their speed perhaps for safety. But the poor fellows were quick undeceived when two men on swift horses pursued them. The probability is they had never seen or heard of horses before and of course were much frightened when they saw the men as it seemed to them sailing through the air. when overtaken nothing could be learned from them. They wanted no conversation with us personal safety was their only object. They feared they were about to pay for their curiosity with their lives but did not attempt to defend themselves and endeavored to express by a continued gabering and signs their desire that my men 'should go one way and they would go the other. finding it impossible to persuade them to come to camp I gave them some small presents and granted what appeared to be their greatest and only desire permission to leave us.  I trapped on this stream 2 or 3 days and moved down it some distance. But as there was no Beaver and the water began to fail and was apparently soon lost in the sand I ascended it again to the foot of the mountain and struck south again.  The stream I had left I called Lost Creek. Leaving lost Creek I traveled over some verry rocky hills for ten miles I then entered a valley which run a little west of south varying from 3 to 7 miles in width and followed down this about 20 miles before we found water.  It was late before the party all got up. Robeseau and Nipasang with their women and Boys left us today as they were anxious to go more East which I would not consent to do. At night Manuel one of my men ran off taking with him a horse Rifle and ammunition belonging to the Comp. The two snake women that I had purchased from the Utas to save them from the torture also ran off with him. This was undoubtedly by his instigation as he could talk with them which neither of my men could do he probably told them he would take them to their own country. A range of low mts still keeps on the E and on the W the country has the same unwelcome appearance the detached hills are somewhat higher. In the plains are a few antelope and in the Mt some Ibex our dried meat was now gone. In continuing South for 2 days a similar country to the last described. Small streams of water coming out of the Mt on the E are soon lost in the Plain on these creeks there is some grass and Brush. 2 or 3 antelopes killed. Came to a small Creek running S followed it a part of a day but the country becoming verry Rock and hilly I was obliged to turn off to the right where after traveling 8 or 10 miles through a rough country I came to a stream about 60 yds wide running S W and coming from the N E : consequently it must head with Ashleys River. This river I call Adam's River in honor of the present President. I proceded on down this river and as we found no game or Beaver we had nothing to eat. The grass of the river at this place was of those coarse tough kinds which we call Salt and Cane grass. On the day after I struck the river I passed a small spot of ground where corn had been raised 3 or 4 years since. Some of my men could hardly believe it possible that corn had ever been planted in this lonely country although the remains of the stalks were found. The hills being irregular convinced me that it was the work of Indians. The course of the River which is wide sandy and shallow continues S W and the country off from the River Rough Rocky & Red hills no timber or game. On the evening of the second day I had advanced a little ahead of the company to look for a place to encamp. near a small Creek coming in from the west and at the distance of 200 yards I observed an Indian on a hill and made signs for him to come to me but he presented his bow and arrows and in a moment I saw 15 or 20 appear. not considering it safe to remain here I hastened back to the party and then proceeded on to the selected encampment. By this time 20 or 30 were seen skulking around among the Rocks. I therefore had every thing prepared for the worst and advancing alone before the camp by making signs and speaking in a friendly tone of voice I finally succeeded in persuading one of them to come to me.

The poor fellow the bravest in the band advanced with evident signs of fear his limbs trembling and his voice faltering. holding out in his hand a hare or rabbit to offer as a token of friendship. I took it and carrassed him and he immediately set down. When the others saw that he was not hurt 10 or 12 of them came bringing in their hands an ear of corn as an emblem of peace - (a pleasing sight to starving men) they set down Began to talk and make signs. As provisions was our greatest present desire we were much pleased to hear that they had corn and pumpkins close at hand. I gave them some small presents among which I found that pieces of Iron were verry acceptable and started some of them off for corn & pumpkins. they soon returned well loaded and indiferent as this may seem to him who never made his pillow of the sand of the plain or him who would consider it a hardship to go without his dinner yet to us weary and hungry in the solitary desert it was a feast a treat that made my party in their sudden hilarity and Glee present a lively contrast to the moody desponding silence of the night before. As both men and horses required rest I thought it advisable to remain here 2 or three days during which time I sent some men down to the river to see what the prospect was ahead and 2 men back on the trail for 2 horses that had been left behind. In the mean time I was trading for Corn in order to have a small stock of provision when I started again. My men from below returned and told me that the river about 10 m below entered the mountain which we could see from camp and that we could not follow the River through the Mt unless we traveled in the water as the Rocks rise from the water perpendicularly on both sides. The river being wide and shallow there is no chance for Beaver but there being a great many willows cut on the banks it appeared that they came here in high water and the Indians by signals told me that there were plenty below. The two men returned on the third day with the tired horses. The weather while here was verry warm the Mercury rising above blood heat. I visited some indian lodges a mile above our camp on the creek for the purpose of seeing how they farm. Their little corn patch is close on the bank of the creek for the convenience of water. The Creek is damed about and the water is conducted in a trunk to a place where it can be spread over the surface. For a hoe they use a piece of wood 3 in Broad and 4 feet Long. The pumpkins and Corn were not quite ripe. Their small Lodges are covered with weeds and cane grass the fires being on the out side. They kept their women and children secreted so that I did not see one while with them. They have some Crockery which is thiner than common Brown earthen colored yellow lead Color and like stone ware. I saw no Iron among them so that any piece that could be converted into a knife or an arrow point was a great acquisition. They have pipes made of fine clouded marble and a kind of Tobacco of their own like that which we in the Mountains call snake Tobacco. Each man smokes for himself not passing the pipe around the circle as is the custom among the Mt Indians. They care verry little about our Tobacco. A good many of these Indians were the scalp of an antelope or Mt sheep with the ears on for a hat. In actions and language these indians are like the Pa utch.* (* From the place where I struck Adams River to Corn Creek there was but a few places where there was any timber. What I saw was cotton wood and in places willows The grasses were Cane salt and wire grass. On Corn Creek was a considerable Cotton wood & willows. The country on the Adams River above where I struck it had a peculiarly wild and rugged appearance. I found two or three shrubs that were new to me. On growing in bundles like a currant bush with a bright red and polished bark. Another about three feet high green bark prickly surface and when striped of the bark is perforated it is hollow like a reed.) Having somewhat recruited both men and horses I moved on down the River to the foot of the Mt and then turned off to the right the course of the river still S W winding about among the rocks and ravines. I succeeded in gaining the Summit of the Mt composed of Ridges of Rock and gravel. But although I was so high that I could see the low ground beyond the mountain yet there was a deep ravine before me which I was obliged to cross the descent was extremely steep and as we had had no water since morning I was obliged to follow down the Ravine to the River & as it was then nearly night encamped without any grass for my horses. I killed an Ibex in good order and one of the men killed another. These relished verry well with men who had been for several days deprived of their accustomed rations of meat. Early the next morning we started down in the bed of the general shallowness of the water. By the meanderings of the stream it was about 12 m through the rocks rising perpendicularly from the waters edge in most places to the heighth of 3 or 400 feet. A good many hot springs but not as hot as some I have seen at the Salt Lake and on the Big horn.  Some appearance of Iron ore. At one place I was obliged to unload and swim the horses. Moved about 3 miles after getting through the mountain to the bed of a stream coming in from the west on which there was some good sized cotton wood trees. There is verry little appearance of Indians in this vicinity. The country is not so rough as on the other side of the mountain but extremely barren and the river continues wide and shoal. At this place I saw a new kind of quail some smaller than the atlantic quail. The male has three or four feathers an inch long rising from the top of the head. For four days traveling down the River nothing new or material occured. After passing the Mt the River turns more south keeping nearly parallel with the mountain and at the distance of 5 miles. The grass has been somewhat plentier along the river, and in two or three places a few small cotton wood trees. No game since we left the Mt. On the evening of the fourth day from the Mt I saw an Indian at a distance called to him and after a little hesitation he came to me and understanding by his signals that there was some lodges near by we went on to the mouth of a creek from the SW small but apparently unfailing on the bank of which was several Lodges of Indians like those on corn Creek. They had corn (which was gathered) Pumpkins squashes and some small green Water Melons. I soon purchased some pumpkins and squashes and encamped. As I was weary of traveling in this barren country I of course made many enquiries of the Indians as to the country ahead. They told me there was a large river not far off and of course plenty of Beaver for it is a general characteristic of indians to answer your questions in the manner that they think will please you but without any regard to the truth. There are however some individuals of different tribes in the Mts on whose word you may depend. These Indians are Pa utch but not as wild as those above the Mt. their women and children did not run off. I saw at their Lodges a large cake of rock salt weighting 12 or 15 lbs and on enquiry found that they procured it a cave not far distant. I engaged an indian and sent one of my men to ascertain the truth. The men reported it as true. I saw Ochre among these Indians which was procured from the N E about 30 m. I thought I had some reason to believe these indians in relation to the beaver as they had mocasins made of the skins. It happened that there were two indians here from another tribe apparently for the purpose of trading for salt and ochre. They told me that a days travel below here this river entered another large River coming from the North East and several days journey Below the mouth of this river they resided where there is plenty of beaver and the indians have horses. I saw on these indians some blue yarn and a small piece or two of Iron from which I judged they had some intercourse with the Spanish provinces. I engaged these indians as guides for I might as well go on as undertake to return. Some of my horses had given out and were left and others were so poor as not to be able to carry a load. The prospect ahead was if the indians told me the truth that I might in this moderate Climate trap all winter and also purchase some horses. these considerations induced me to abandon the idea of returning to the mountains until I should have gone somewhat further in exploring the secrets of this thus far unpromising country.

Having stayed at the mouth of __ creek 2 days I started on down the river accompanied by my two guides when I was opposite the cave I turned off to the right across a level piece of ground about 1/2 mile to the foot of a hill which appears to be two or three mile long and 100 or 150 feet high its course being about parallel with the River which is here running S E or E S E. Ascending from the foot of the hill 80 or 90 feet I arrived at the entranc of the cave which is about 15 feet high and the same width gradually close as I advanced to 4 feet in width and 10 feet in heighth where it was quite difficult of descent for a short distance perhaps ten feet where you arrive on a floor the room then opens to about 15 or 18 feet in width 25 or 30 feet in length and 20 feet in heighth. The Roof sides and floor of solid rock salt. I had brought an axe for the purpose of examining it and on breaking it found it generally pure But in places a few dark veins. after satisfying my curiosity I proceeded onwards a few miles and encamped.

The next day S E 15 m to the large river of which my guides had spoken. It was about 200 yards wide 73 deep and a strong current. Coming from the N N E and from this place running south it could be no other but the Colorado of the west which in the Mountains we call seetes-kee-der. Up the River the country presents a hilly Barren appearance and below and all around Barren Stony hills. In some places are a few small trees along the bank of the Colorado. The guides said it would be necessary to cross the river at this place. I there formed a raft of drift wood on which to carry over my goods. The horses were driven in and crossed over after crossing all over moved down the River a mile and enc. Where we crossed the river an Indian and his family were living. They had pumpkins squashes and Beans growing on a small spot of alluvial soil on the River bank. I purchased of the different kinds and he showed me where he had wheat sown or rather planted in the hills 20 or 30 grains in the hill. The River entering a low but rugged mountain below  I found it would be necessary to turn off from it to the left and as my guides informed me that it was more than a days travel to the next accessible point on the river between which place and this no water could be found I determined to wait until the heat of the day was over and travel as much as possible in the night. At the proper time we moved on keeping a south East course up a wide gravelly ravine the course of which was nearly parallel with the obstructing range of Mt.  At 11 or 12 o clock at night we unpacked and hobled our horses and slept untill the first appearance of light when we prepared and moved on for three hours in the direction of yesterday the Mt. then becoming lower we turned through a low place S S W and after traveling 2 hours more over terrible rocks we arrived at the river where although we found water which we verry much needed yet there was nothing for the hungry and weary horses to eat.  The indians had carried water in the bladder of an antelope which they divided with us yet it was nothing among so many. Just below camp the river again enters the rocks.

The next morning we started early leaving the river and traveling S E 4 or 5 miles up a ravine we got where the hills are fewer and more detached. The country of that same Barren and rough kind I have so often described. My guides had left me in the morning but I had been able to follow their tracks in the sand. The trail turning in toward the river through a range of rough hills by a narrow and deep ravin frequently obstructed by rocks I was apprehensive I would not be able to pass with my horses. As I was some distance ahead of the party and on foot I pushed on briskly to see the worst. I found some verry difficulty places but seeing no other chance for proceeding after taking a drink from the River I returned to meet the company. They had been clamberring and winding among the rocks and were now about three miles from the river. Being now night and a place before us that would require some hours to pass I had the horses unpacked and left them as they could not go back on account of the steep places we had come down.

One of the men who was so lame that he could not walk was obliged to remain while the party moved on to the river on foot. As soon as light the next day we returned and with cords lowered our goods down the precipice. where a mistep would have been in its consequences inevitable destruction.* (* It was at this place a party from Taos saw my trail.)  But fortunately we passed in safety and packing up pushed on to the river where there was a little grass for our horses. The next day I moved 10 miles down the river the hills not so bad as they had been heretofor. In the course of the day some indians met us having some dried pumpkins. finding tolerable grass I remained two days. I killed a Mt sheep and we caught some pretty good fish with the hook and line. One of my men found a singular substance Some hard and transparent pieces of stone about twice as large as a large pea were firmly fixed in the side of a flat stone. Appearance of an abundance of Iron ore are seen here. and most certainly if a country produces minerals in proportion to its barrenness this must be rich in mineral productions.

I had lost a good many horses and some of those remaining were not able to carry any thing. I got the Indians to assist me in moving down to where there was several lodges. These Indians are quite a different nation from the Pa utch. They call themselves A-muc-ha-ba's and appeared quite friendly bringing me corn beans dried pumpkins &c which I paid them for in Beeds Rings vermillion &c. At this place there is considerable timber on the river and the soil might admit of making small farms. There was but 3 or 4 horses among them but I did not succeed in purchasing them. verry little beaver sign on the river. By enquiry I found that the principal part of this tribe were 30 or 40 miles down the river. I remained at this place 2 days during which time a number of Indians came up from the village below. Among these were one or two that could talk spanish and as I had a man that was able to speak the spanish I could hold some conversation with them. I then moved on down the River accompanied by the Indians who had come up from the settlements below. The distance was upwards of thirty miles and the country barren. On my arrival at the settlement I was treated with great kindness.  Melons and roasted pumpkins were presented in great abundance - At this time it was low water yet the Colorado was 200 yards and in the shoalest place I could find 10 feet deep with a smooth current. The timber in this vicinity consisting of the Cottonwood and a small species of Honey Locust with some willow extends entirely along the river varying in width from 1/2 to 2 1/2 miles in width the river winding through woodland from one side to the other alternately. Leaving the woodland which has a tolerable soil the sandy region commences producing nothing but sedge and prickly pear. On the East and West at the distance of ten miles a chain of Rocky hills run parallel with the river and about thirty miles south the Rocky hills close in to the River. This settlement of the Amuchaba's extending about 30 miles along the River appeared quite numerous and paying some considerable attention to agriculture they do not live in villages but are rather scattered over the country generaly whereever they find the most favorable situations. In person these Indians are tall and well formed complexion not dark. In abilities perhaps second to the Utas. They do not appear much inclined to steal but are quite fond of gambling. Their principal Game is conducted as follows. A piece of ground 30 or 40 feet long and 8 feet wide is made level and smooth. Each man has a pole ten feet long and one of them a hoop 4 inches in diameter. The hoop is set rolling from one end of the floor and at the instant both start and sliding their poles endeavor to intersect the hoop. The one that pierces the hoop or when hoop and poles stop is the nearest to the spot is the winner. The women also gamble by tossing small colored sticks in a dish somewhat like throwing dice. The women are generally very fleshy with tolerable features. The man when dressed at all have a Spanish Blanket thrown over the left shoulder and passing under the right arm it is pined on the breast with a wooden pin. They wear no head dress mocasins or leggings. The dress of the women is a peticoat made of a material like flax just Broken which is Banded with a plat on the upper edge like corn husks. It is fastened around the waist extending down to the knee and constitutes with whole of their clothing. They are in general much more cleanly than the Pautch.

They make a kind of earthen ware and in large crocks of this they boil their beans corn pumpkins &c. The men appear to work as much in the field as the women which is quite an unusual sight among Indians. But few of them have bows and arrows. The bows are 5 feet long and the arrows verry long and made of cane grass with a wooden splice 6 inches long for a head. It is fashion with these indians to fill the hair full of mud and wind it around the head until the top resembles in shap a tin pan. Their summer Lodges about 3 feet high are made of forks and poles covered with grass weeds and dirt flat on the top. The winter Lodges generally small are made in the woods but fronting to the south and where the trees are not sufficiently high to keep out the sun. As the rainy season approaches they throw dirt on the roof to give it a slope to carry off the water and also secure the sides with dirt leaving only a small aperture for a door. As they have not much clothing when the weather requires it they build a great many small fires sleeping in the intervals between them. When they become cold they draw the sand out from under fires and spread it where they sleep. In their Lodges I observed an abundance of Crocks and demijohns. Goards and small bins made of willow in which they put their corn, beans, wheat, garden seeds, and melons. The Honey Locust of this country bears a pod somewhat longer than a bean.  The Indians gather these and pound both the pod and the bean it contains until it forms a coarse flour. they work it into loaves and Let it dry it is then fit for use. When they use it they rinse it with water to which it imparts a sweet and yet tartish taste by no means unpleasant. I frequently observed at a distance from their houses willow bins that would hold 20 to 100 Bushels filled with the Locust pods from which circumstances I judged them not much inclined to steal from each other. Their method of grinding their wheat is somewhat tedious. On a large flat stone a little concave it is pounded or rather rolled with another stone in the shape of a bakers rolling pin until it is sufficiently fine. The stone on which the grinding is done being placed in a sloping possition gradually as the meal becomes fine it is permitted to slide off into a dish at the lower end. The bread which they form of this meal is baked in the sand or ashes under the fire without the covering of Bark or grass used by the Pawnees. When they would roast their Pumpkins or Squashes which is common method of cooking them, they take a plug from the side extract the seeds from the hole and replace the Plug by which means they may roast them as neatly as if they were entire.

I found in this vicinity no beaver worth trapping for but remained here for the purposes of recruiting my men and horses. From the Indians I ascertained that below the rocky hills that came into the river and nearly down to the mouth of the Gila the country was barren and not inhabited. they also told me that it was about ten days travel to the spanish settlements in California. I swaped my poorest horses with the indians and endeavored to purchase others but without success.* (* One morning an Indian came to me and said the Indians had killed one of my horses which on examination I found to be true. They had killed the horse to eat and took away every thing but the entrails. from this time I had my horses so carefully guarded that they had no chance to continue their depredations.) Believing it impossible to return to the deposit at this season and in my present situation I determined to prepare myself as well possible and push forward to California where I supposed I might procure such supplies as would enable me to move on north. In that direction I expected to find beaver and in all probability some considerable river heading up in the vicinity of the Great Salt Lake       By this route I could return to the deposite. In pursuance of my plan I endeavored by all means in my power to procure a guide but could not succeed. I therefore got the best instruction I could in regard to the route and collected a supply of Corn, Beans, Locust Bread, and a little Indian flour.

Having remained at this place about 8 days I made a raft and crossed the river and for the first day traveled nearly west passing through the Rocky hills by a deep ravine which brought me through to the plain then a little north of west 15 miles to another range of hills where I found water and cane grass and encamped. At night the most valuable horse I had was stolen for although I had a guard yet it was so dark that the horse was led out unperceived. The next day I travelled west through the range of hills to the plain where the trail could not be followed and where I was obliged to encamp without water. I had supposed that I should be able to follow the trail from the directions given by the indians which being found impracticable and a great scarcity of water becoming more apparent I rode and sent others to the high hills and deep ravines in every direction to Look for water and as none could be found the Idea came forcibly to mind that it was the policy of the Indians to send me into the desert to perish. In this situation I saw no alternative but to retrace my steps. on my way back I found an Indian and a boy following our trail for some purpose unknown to me. They had water with them which would convey the Idea that the country where I turned back was for some distance destitute of it. On seeing us one of them ran off I did not pursue him but kept the other with me until I got to the spring where I had before encamped. It will be readily imagined that by this time we were much in want of water. During the night the Indians ran off. The next day I moved to the river and found that the Indians had all gone from their Loges leaving everything the could not carry off.

It was now prudent to prepare for the worst which I did by making a pen for my horses and encamping under a bank of the River which would answer as a breastwork in the emergency which the singular conduct of the indians led me to expect. However the little renegade Francisco  (that spoke spanish) came to the opposite bank of the river in the morning and after hallowing plunged in and swam over. I asked the reason of the singular behaviour of the Indians. He said the Indians that got away from me told them I was coming back to kill them all for stealing my horse. To this I answered that it was all folly to tell them to return and be friendly as usual. It was true I must have my horse but I would not think of punishing the whole of them for the fault of the single scoundrel that stole him. I also told him to tell the chiefs that they must get the horse and bring him to me in which event all would be well. Francisco left me and in the evening the Indians returned to their Lodges. The chiefs came to see me and said that the Indian that stole my horse had gone off some distance but that they would have him back as soon as possible and oblige him to deliver the horse. They wished me to recross the river and as the grass was poor at that place I complied with their request and after crossing moved down the river about ten miles where the settlement is also considerable  and the country like that above with the exceptions that there are some small prairaes of tolerable good sandy soil producing Melons and corn and some ponds and slous in which portions of the river run in high water. The grass at this place was much better than at any place above and the productions the same as those mentioned before though perhaps in greater abundance than in the upper part of the settlement. Their wheat is planted in hills. As they have no fences what few horses they have are kept constantly tied by a long halter and at this season are fed on Pumpkins and melons of which they appear verry fond. They ride without saddle or Bridle but by the help of a wide Circingle under which the slip their feet they are enabled to sit firmly. Melons were supplied in such numbers that I had frequently 3 or 400 piled up before my tent. A great many women and children were generally about us. Among the Amuchabas I did not find any verry influential chiefs.

He that has the most wives and consequently the most numerous connexion is the greatest man. There was one chief which we called Red Shirt from the circumstance of his wearing a shirt made out of a piece of red cloth which I had given him.  He was about 40 years of age and appeared to be a great favorite among the women. He frequently stayed at my tent and slept with any of the women he chose. No indians I have seen pay so much deference to the women as these. Among indians in general they have not the privilege of speaking on a subject of any moment but here they harangue the Multitude the same as the men. While here Francisco came to me and requested I would go and see a man who was verry sick. I told him I was no Physician but these indians thinking a white man could do anything I was obliged to go to satisfy them. When I arrived at the spot 3 or 400 people were assembled but the man was dead. Seeing a large pile of wood I enquired of the interpreter the meaning he informed they were about to burn the corpse which was soon brought and laid on the pile, and also a small bag of net work containing his property. It appeared the man had died from the swelled neck a disorder I think quite common here as I observe many with their necks much scarified a remedy which appeared to have been applied to the case of the deceased as there was a good deal of Blood on his neck. Two or three women were crying and screaming and came to the pile apparently in the greatest agony embracing the corpse. They were pulled off and fire was put to the pile which was soon in flames. The mourners took some strips of Red cloth and whatever they thought most valuable and threw them in the flames. I left them but Francisco told me the deceased had two horses which were already killed and on them the people would now feast. It being a great object with me to procure a guide no means were left untried and finally I succeeded in engaging two Indians that lived in the vicinity of the Spanish Settlements. The stolen horse having been returned I moved to the proper point and crossed over the River for the purpose of making another attempt to cross the plain to California. Having remained at the Amuchabas several days. The first day I traveled the same course as on the preceeding attempt and encamped at the same spring.

The next day on the same route till I came to the place where I had before lost the trail then traveling a little north of west and passing some detached hills on the right and left just before night we came to a hill of rocks and at its foot a small spring where I encamped.

In the vicinity was some gravelly hills on which there was a little grass where I turned my horses. The next day started early steering W N W crossing some ridges and passing some hills on our left. Just before night at the foot of a small hill we found a little spring or rather hole of water furnishing a verry inadequate supply for after taking out some to cook with I let the horses to it and they drank it all. As there was no grass I was under the necessity of tieing my horses to keep them from running away. The next morning starting early a N W course about 1 O Clock I came to a little ravine in which was some grass and a spring here I encamped. The country since leaving the Colorado has been a dry rocky sandy Barren desert. As my guides informed me that we had a hard days travel to make I moved off early keeping west down the ravine 5 miles Then S W and W S W till one O Clock when I came to border of a salt plain and at this place found some holes of Brackish water. After crossing the Salt Plain I found a place where there was water and some grass and encamped. The water was in holes dug about two feet deep and quite brackish making some new holes I found the water some better The Salt Plain I had passed during the day was about 15 miles long and from four to six miles wide, entirely Level and destitute of vegetation. Presenting a surface of sand the most beautiful Salt was found in many places and within two or three inches of the surface. I ascertained that although the salt was found in a Layer it did not extend throughout the plain. In passing the plain pieces of the salt were frequently throw out by the feet of the horses. The Layer was about 3/4 of an inch thick and when the sand was removed from it I found the salt pure white with a grain as fine as table salt.

The next day W S W 8 or 10 miles across a plain and entered the dry Bed of a River on each side high hills. Pursuing my course along the valley of this river 8 or 9 miles I encamped. In the channel of the river I occasionally found water. It runs from west to east alternately running on the surface and disappearing entirely in the sands of its bed leaving them for miles entirely dry. near the place where I entered its Bed it seemed to finally lose itself in the plain.* (* It is perhaps reasonable to suppose that the Salt Plain has been formed by the waters of this river overflowing the level country in its freshets and in the dry season sinking in the sand and Leaving a deposit of salt on the surface. The waters of the River at this place are sufficiently salt to justify this conclusion.) At this time my provision was nearly exhausted although I thought I had provided enough to last me 10 or 12 days. But men accustomed to living on meat and at the same time travelling hard will Eat a surprising quantity of corn and Beans which at this time constituted our principal subsistence. One of my guides said he knew where his people had a cache of some provision and the next day as I traveled on he went with one of the men to procure some at night they returned bringing something that resembled in appearance loaves of bread weighing each 8 or 10 pounds. It was so hard that an ax was required to break it and in taste resembled Sugar Candy.  It was no doubt sugar but in that imperfect form in which it is found among nations to which the art of granulation is unknown. On enquiry I found it was made from the cane grass which I have before spoken of on adams River and the same of which the Amuchabas make their arrows. For three days nothing material occurred  Our course was up the River which sometimes run in sight and then for miles disappeared in the sands. In places I found grass and the Sugar Cane and in some places small Cotton wood. I also saw the tracks of horses that had been here during the summer. My guides Belonged to a tribe of indians residing in the vicinity called the wanyumas. not numerous for this barren country could not support them. At this place was some sign of Antelope and Mt sheep Mr. Rogers killed an Antelope which tasted quite strong of wormwood. On the 4th night from the salt plain an Amuchaba indian that had come this far with me disappeared.  I suppose he had become tired of the journey and returned. My guides had expected to find their families here but were disappointed.

The next day still following the course of the River which had a strong current in places 20 yds in width and in others entirely disappeared in the sands. After a long days travel I arrived late at a wan yu ma Lodge. close by were 2 or three families of the same tribe. Here I remained the following day and in the mean time was well treated by these indians. They gave us such food as they had consisting of a kind of mush made of acrons and pine nuts bread made of a small berry. This bread in appearance was like corn bread but in taste much sweeter. As there were in the neighborhood a plenty of hares the Indians said they must give us a feast. Several went out for this purpose with a net 80 or 100 yards long. Arriving at a place where they knew them to be plenty the net was extended among the wormwood. then divided on each wing they moved in such direction as to force the frightened game to the net where they were taken while entangled in its meshes. Being out but a short time they brought in 2 or three doz a part of which they gave me. seeing some tracks of antelope Mr. Rogers and myself went out and killed 2. In this vicinity there are some groves of Cotton wood and in places Sugar Cane and grass. On the following day after making the indians some presents I moved on keeping a right hand fork my course nearly S W passing out at the head of this creek and over a ridge I entered a ravin running S W I proceeded down it nearly to where it entered some high hills which were apparently covered with pine. At this place I encamped. In the course of the days I passed hills covered with a scattering growth of Bastard Cedar and bushy Oak. Some antelopes were seen in the course of the day and the tracks of Bear and Black tailed Deer.

The next day following the valley of a creek alternately sinking and rising and passing through a range of Mt for 8 miles where I was obliged to travel in the bed of the creek as the hills on both sides which were thick covered with cedar came in close and rugged to the creek. About ten miles from camp I came out into a large valley having no timber except what was on the creeks coming from the Mountains.  Here we found a plenty of grass and what was still more pleasing we began to see track of Horses and Cattle and shortly after saw some fine herds of Cattle in many directions. As those sure evidences of Civilization passed in sight they awakened many emotions in my mind and some of them not the most pleasant. It would perhaps be supposed that after numerous hardships endured in a savage and inhospitable desert I should hail the herds that were passing before me in the valley as harbingers of better times. But they reminded me that I was approaching a country inhabited by Spaniards. A people whose distinguishing characteristic has ever been jealousy a people of different religion from mine and possessing a full share of that bigotry and disregard of the rights of a Protestant that has at times stained the Catholic Religon.

They might perhaps consider me a spy imprison me persecute me for the sake of religion or detain me in prison to the ruin of my business I knew such things had been and might be again. Yet confiding in the rectitude of my intentions I endeavored to convince myself that I should be able to make it appear to them that I had come to their country as the only means by which I could extricate myself from my own embarrassing situation and that so far from being a spy my only wish was to procure such supplies as would enable me to proceed to my own country.

When we left the Mts our course was W S W Close on the right was a range of Mts out of which poured several beautiful streams watering a fertile valley extending many miles on the left. Having traveled about 18 miles I encamped.  We had nothing to eat and knowing that it would take two days to reach the settlements I determined to help myself to one of the hundreds of fine cattle in view. In endeavoring to kill one I had to use all the precaution necessary in approaching Buffalo. Having succeeded I found the animal branded on the hip I therefore saved the skin to carry in to the owner. At this place I remained during the following day.

Again moving onward in two days travel I arrived at a farm house. The country through which we passed was strikingly contrasted with the Rocky and Sandy deserts through which we had so long been traveling. There we had passed many high mountains rocky and Barren Many plains whose sands drank up the waters of the river and spring where our need was the greatest. There sometimes a solitary Antelope Bounded by to vex our hunger and the stunted useless sedge grew as in mockery of the surrounding sterility. There for many days we had traveled weary hungry and thirsty drinking from springs that increased our thirst and looking in vain for a boundary of the interminable waste of sands. But now the scene was changed and whether it was its own real Beauty or the contrast with what we had seen it certainly seemed to us enchantment. Our path was through a fertile and well watered valley and the herds of Cattle and the bands of wild horses as they sniffed the wind and rushed wildly across our way reminded me of the Plains of the Buffalo East of the mountains that seemed to me as a home or of the cattle of the more distant prairaes of Missouri and Illinois.

Even in the Idea that we were approaching the abode of comparative civilization there was a pleasure not however entirely unmixed with dred for we knew not how we might be received. As we advanced the white Brant and Mallard were seen in great numbers it being now their season. and we passed a farm on a creek where a number of indians were at work. They gazed and gazed again considering us no doubt as strange objects in which they were not much in error. When it is considered that they were not accustomed to see white men walking with horses packed as mine were with Furs Traps Saddlebags Guns and Blankets and every thing so different from any thing they had ever seen and add to this our ragged and miserable appearance I should not have been surprised if they had run off at first sight for I have often been treated in that manner by savages. Arrived at the farm houses I was kindly received by an elderly man an indian who spoke spanish and immediately asked me if I would have a Bullock killed. I answered that I would and away rode two young Indians in a moment It being the custom in this country as I have since learned to keep a horse or horses constantly tied at the door Saddled and Bridled and of course ready to mount at a moments warning. In a short time the indians returned bringing a cow as fast as she could gallop. She was held between the two horsemen by ropes thrown over her horns and having the other end fast to the Pomel of the spanish Saddle one riding before and the other behind she was forced along without the power of resistance. They were anxious that I should shoot the cow which I did. Novel as the scenery of this country was to me It seemed that we ourselves were a still greater wonder to our semi-civilized friends. As I afterwards learned they wondered how indians could be so white having no Idea that civilized people lived in the direction from which we came. It was also a great wonder to them that we had guns and other articles and more than all that there should be with us one of the people of Reason this being the name by which they were learned to distinguish Spaniards from indians and which they readily applied to one of my men who spoke spanish.

The farm house consisted of Two Buildings each about 100 feet long 20 feet wide and 12 feet high placed so as to form two sides of a square.  The walls are of unburnt brick about 2 feet thick and at intervals of 15 feet Loop holes are left for the admission of light. The roofs were Thatched. It should be premised that I had at this time but a vague idea of the peculiarities of the country in which my fortune had placed me. I therefore was in the dark as to the manner in which I should conduct myself and determined to be guided by circumstances as they should transpire. In pursuance of this plan when the old overseer asked me if I was not going to write to Father   I told him I was and immediately set down and wrote a few lines briefly stating where I was from and the reason of my being there an Indian mounting one of the horses that are always in readiness took my note and was off in an instant. In about an hour the answer was returned by a man who the overseer told me was the commandant but in fact a Corporal.  He asked me how I did and congratulated me that I had escaped the Gentiles and got into a christian country and offering me some Segars made with paper according to the common custom of the country when I would take one he insisted that I should take the bunch. He then presented the note from the Father written in Latin and as I could not read his Latin nor he my english it seemed that we were not likely to become general correspondents. I however ascertained that he wished me to ride to the Mission so giving Mr. Rogers instructions how to proceed in my absence I took my interpreter and in Company with the corporal and a soldier moved on at the gate that appears quite common in this country a gallop passing large fields laid out on both sides of the road and fenced with Posts set in the ground with rails tied to them by means of strong pieces of raw hide there being also thousands of Cattle skulls in rows on each side of the road conveying the Idea that we were approaching an immense slaughter yard. Arrived in view of a Building of ancient and Castle-like appearance and not knowing why I was brought there or who I was to see the current of my thoughts ran so rapidly through my mind as to deprive me of the power of coming to any conclusion so that when we passed in front of the Building and the Corporal after pointing to an old man sitting in the portico and observing that there was the father immediately rode off I was left quite embarrassed hardly knowing how to introduce myself. Observing this I presume the father took me by hand and quite familiarly asked me to walk in making at the same time many enquiries.  Soon some bread and cheese were brought in and some rum of which I drank to please the Father but much against my own taste. I then related to him as well as in my power the course of my being in that country but it was being to him a thing so entirely new and my interpreter perhaps not giving a correct translation of my words he was not able to comprehend the subject and told me there was an American residing in the vicinity for whom he would send as he spoke good Spanish and on his arrival we might have a good understanding.  In the mean time he told me to make myself as contented as possible and consider myself at home. He ordered the steward to show me to a room about 20 feet square in which there was a bed taking possession of it I was left alone to reflect on my singular situation for about two hours when the bell ringing for Supper a boy came and invited me in. The Old Father invited me to pass up next to him. We were seated on a long bench with a back to it one of these occupying each side of the table. On The opposite side of the table sat a Spanish Gentlemen and a father from the neighboring village of the Angels and the steward of the mission. at my side sat my interpreter. As soon as we were seated the Father said Benediction and each one in the most hurried manner asked the blessing of heaven - and even while the last words were pronouncing the fathers were reaching for the different dishes. About a doz Indian boys were in attendance who passing the different dishes to the fathers they helping themselves and passing them to the next. Our knives and forks according to the common custom of the country were rolled up in a napkin and laid by the side of the plates. The supper consisted principally of meats. and an abundance of wine. Before the cloth was removed Cigars were passed around. I may be excused for being this particular in this table scene when it is recollected that It was a long time sinc I had had the pleasure of sitting at a table and never before in such company.

November 28th  1826   My party arrived and I had my things put into the room which I occupied. The Corporal who was called Commandant came to me and after a few preparatory compliments observed that the best thing I could do with my guns would be to put them in his charge where they would be safe for said he strangers visiting you will be constantly handling them they being a kind with which they are unacquainted. I thanked him for his kindness and gave him the arms though I knew he was influenced by a motive verry different from the one assigned.

29th     Just at sunrise Mr Rogers and myself were sent for showed forward to the table and served with tea Bread and Cheese. The father was not present for at that time he was at his devotions. It may perhaps be well for me in this place to give a view of some facts that were in part learned after this time anticipating my story that my ideas may be the more readily understood. California was first settled by missionaries of the order of St. Francis about 60 years since. These missions are scattered over the country and include in their several jurisdictions nearly all the natives of the country. The number of indians attached to each mission varies from 400 to 2000. These establishments with their dependencies include about 3/4ths of the Inhabitants of California. The place at which I was for the time located was the mission of St Gabriel. The situation of St. Gabriel is pleasant the prospect to the North embracing a considerable range of Mts at the distance of 12 miles on the south low hills and on the East and west a smooth country covered with grass. The soil in the vicinity of the mission has the appearance of great fertility presenting a gentle slope to the south East. The hills produce Pine of different kinds and at their feet Groves of Low Oak and small walnuts. The Streams are skirted with Cotton wood Ash willow small Buck Eye and wild Grape vines. Two thousand acres of land fenced in the manner I have before described and so situated as to be easily watered by a small creek that runs through it producing an abundance of Wheat Beans Peas and some Corn. An extensive vineyard and orchards of Apples Peach Pear and Olive trees some figs and a Beautiful grove of about 400 Orange trees render the Mission of St Gabriel a scene on which the eye cannot fail to rest with pleasure. On the beautiful lands of the neighborhood are grazing immense herds of Cattle and large bands of Horses. The buildings of the mission form a Hollow square. The Church on the S E and the Guard House on the S W corner the several sides being occupied by the Fathers Rooms office dinning Room apartments for Strangers. Store Houses Granaries Soap Factory Distillery Black Smith Carpenters and Cooper Shops The Shops for the Manufacture of Blankets and Lodging rooms for the unmarried women. at a short distance from the square the intermediate space being unfenced there is a street lined with small buildings on both sides these are occupied by the Indians of the Mission who have families. At 11 O Clock the Father came and invited us to dinner. We accompanied him to the office adjoining the dining room and after taking a glass of Gin and some bread and cheese we seated ourselves at the table which was furnished with Mutton Beef Chickens Potatoes Beans and Peas cooked in different ways. Wine in abundance made our reverend fathers appeared to me quite merry. an express had been forwarded by the Commandant to the Governor at San Diego.* (*My two indian guides were put in prison immediately on my arrival charged with being runaways from the Mission. They were about 16 years of age and from what I saw of them I thought them fine honest and well disposed boys.)

30th November Sunday A wedding at church but I did not attend being a protestant. I thought it might not be agreeable to the Catholics. the new married couple dined with us the bride and her sister being the only females present two or three young men attended with the groom. Mr Rogers and myself in our unfashionable dress would have verry willingly absented ourselves but no excuses would be received. Our dinner consisted 0f more than the usual number of dishes. Dried Grapes were served as a desert a Dozen Indians were playing on violins and the soldiers were firing their Musquets at the door. After dinner I spoke to the Commandant for another room for my men which was readily provided. I also proposed that instead of furnishing my men with their provision ready cooked as had been the case heretofore they should receive the material and cook them to their own taste to this he assented but observed that they might as well as not have an Indian to assist them. Flour Meat Beans &c were provided in abundance.

From this time nothing material occurred for several days. Mr Chapman the american spoken of by the Father came from the village of the angels accompanied by Capt Anderson of the Brig Olive Branch and the supercargo Mr. Scott.  Mr Scott being a good translator I was enabled to make my situation fully known. I soon ascertained that nothing could be done until the arrival of an answer from the Governor at San Diego. Besides the above named Gentlemen there came to St Gabriel at different times two others who spoke good English John Baptiste Bonnifacio a Portuguese residing at St Francisco and on his way to St. Diego the other Senor Martinas a native of S America and formerly in good circumstances. But being a Royalist lost his property and sought a retreat among the Fathers in California who are geny. secret friends of Ferdinand. Senor Martinas had lately been called to Mexico and was then on his way he appeared to be a man of science and business "You will find (says he.) it verry difficult to make the Governor Comprehend your business. He has been raised without knowing the hand that fed him as a Gentlemen and those Mexican Gentlemen know verry little of business of any kind and much less of yours. He may perhaps detain you here a long time he will not consider the expense of the wages of your men nor your anxiety to join your partners.

Improving the opportunity offered by my presence I learned from Father Sanchez that at the different farms belonging to the Mission (St Gabriel) there were 40,000 head of Cattle 2,000 horses 3 or 400 head of Sheep and a great many hogs of these last the make little use.  There are but few white men at this place neither could it be expected there would be many in California for father Sanchez told me that no white woman had ever come there to live. There are attached to the Mission of St Gabriel about      Indian Inhabitants who are kept in the strictest order being punished severly for the most trifling offence or neglect.

They are whipped like slaves the whip being used by an indian a soldier standing by with a sword to see that it is faithfully done. Having passed the age of puberty the two sexes if unmarried are kept separate being at night shut up in different apartments            the work of the day having their tasks            the ringing of the Bells in the morning which is quite early all the indians go to church and after prayers the overseers of the various branches of work receive their orders from the Principal Overseer and move off immediately to their several employments. An old man from the Angel village being at the mission invited me to visit him at his house and two or three days after sent his son with horses. I went taking with me my interpreter and was verry kindly received by my friend Francisco Abela.  The Angel village in which my friend resided contained 70 or 80 Houses The walls of mud or unburnt Brick and the roofs of thatch or tile. They were general small and few of them cleaner than they should be. This village is about ten miles S W from St. Gabriel the inhabitants cultivate but little ground depending on their Cattle for subsistance. They are generally poor but a few families are rich in Cattle horses and Mules and among these Senor Francisco Abela and his Brother Don Ignatio are perhaps the richest. In California as in Spain the Siesta after dinner is fashionable. they generally sleep 2 or three hours. The Californians are excellent horsemen when on a swift horse they catch a wild steer or horse with the greatest ease. They are seldom seen on foot but mount a horse to go even 200 yards and always carry with them a strong rope made from pieces of Ox hide braided which is called a Larse. It is 7 or 8 fathoms in Length with a Loop at the end for the purpose of forming a noose. The Spaniard mounted on a swift horse with his Larse in hand holding it so as to form the noose about 4 feet in diameter and swinging it around his head to keep it connected pursues the wild Cattle and horses of that country and arriving at the proper distance while both pursued and pursuer are at utmost speed throws his noose with such precision as to generally succeed in fastening it to the animal in the intended place while at the same time with his left hand he takes a turn around the Pomel of the saddle which is made high for that purpose with the end of the rope remaining in his hand. If the animal pursued is a horse he is caught around the neck and is soon choaked down. If a steer he is caught by the horns and generally by two persons one riding before the animal and one behind holding him between them by their respective Larses with the power of resistance. If it is the object to throw the animal down they throw for the feet and having caught and fastened the rope to the saddle giving the horse a start the animals feet are taken from under him at once. In this manner they can take almost any animal in the country without excepting even the Elk but the principal use of this daring and active exercise is the catching of the wild horse and wild Cattle that range the country in great numbers. I am also informed that when a Bear can be found in the open country they are taken in this manner. But they do not attempt this adventure singly. Of the truth of this I have some doubts. The only Bear found in this country are the Grizly Bear smaller than those of the Mountains yet notwithstanding a formidable animal and possessing sufficient strength as I think to take hold of the Larse when noosed around the neck and tear it from the Saddle or break it in an instant.

8th December 1826      At this time the Mercury ranges from 50 to 70. Today the Corporal received orders to forward me to San Diego to pay a visit to his excellency Hosea Maria De Acheondia.  Capt Cunningham of the Ship Courier of Boston arrived about the same time from San Diego.

9th December 1826      Capt Cunningham had been trading on this coast since the preceding July exchanging Dry goods Groceries and hardware for hide and Specie. The population not admiting of a wholesale business the sales are made in Retail while passing along the coast from Acapulco to St Francisco. At that time he expected to be on the coast about a year longer. He spoke Spanish and manifested the most friendly disposition and a willingness to render me all the assistance in his power. It was therefore with great pleasure that I learned he was about to return to San Diego and that we could travel in Company. At 11 O Clock all preparations being made we started. My horses were furnished by government some being driven along for the purpose of having a change. A soldier was sent by the Commandant for a guide to take charge of the Loose horses and catch one if necessary. Just before starting the Comdt took care to tell me that he was instructed to send a good and careful Soldier. In this country horses are so plenty and cheap and the people have so little feeling for these noble animals (as I shall soon show) that they indulge freely in the common disposition for fast riding secure that when a horse is no longer able to travel another may be cheaply and easily procured. We therefore fell in with the spirit of the time and people and moved off at a gallop over a fine level country. Four miles from St Gabriel we crossed a stream 50 yards wide and shallow and sandy.  On the right a country gently undulating extended to the Ocean a distance of 20 or 30 miles and on the left a range of high and rough hills. About 18 miles from the first mentioned creek we crossed another 80 yards wide in appearance like the first and three miles further came to a farm. In this distance we had passed many herds of cattle belonging to the residents of the Angel village and some thousands of wild horses. The wild horses become so abundant at times as to eat the grass quite clean. My guide informed me that the inhabitants of the village and of the vicinity collect whenever they consider the country overstocked and build a large and strong pen with a small entrance and two wings extending from the entrance some distance to the right and left. Then mounting their swiftest horses they scour the country and surrounding large bands they drive them into the enclosure by hundreds. They will there perhaps Larse a few of the handsomest and take them out of the pack. A horse selected in this manner is immediately thrown down and altered blindfolded saddled and haltered (for the Californians always commenc with the halter). The horse is then allowed to get up and a man is mounted. when he is firmly fixed in his seat and the halter in his hand an assistant takes off the blind the several men on horseback with handkerchiefs to frighten and some with whips to whip raise the yell and away they go. The poor horse having been so severely punished and frightened does not think of flouncing but dashes off at no slow rate for a trial of his speed. After running until he is exhausted and finding he cannot get rid of his enemies he gives up. He is then kept tied for 2 or 3 days saddled and rode occasionally and if he proves docile he is tied by the neck to a tame horse until he becomes attached to the company and then turned Loose. But if a horse from the moment he is taken from the pen proves refractory they do not trouble themselves with him long but release him from his bondage by thrusting a knife to his heart. Cruel as this fate may seem it is a mercy compared to that of the hundreds left in the pack for they are shut up to die a death most lingering and most horrible, enclosed within a narrow space without the possibility of escape and without a morsel to eat they gradually loose their strength and sink to the ground making at time vain efforts to regain their feet and when at last all powerful hunger has left them but the strength to raise their heads from the dust with which they are soon to mingle their eyes that are becoming dim with the approach of death may catch a glimpse of green and wide spread pastures and winding streams while they are perishing from want. one by one they die and at length the last and most powerful sinks down among his companions to the plain. No man of feeling can think of such a scene without surprise indignation and pity. Pity for the noblest of animals dying from want in the midst of fertile fields. Indignation and surprise that men are so barbarous and unfeeling. A fact so disgraceful to the Californians was not credited from a single narrator but has since been corroborated.

But to return to this digression the farm of which I have before spoken belonged to Don Thomas (the remainder of his name I have forgotten).  he was not at home but his wife invited us into a house of 2 or three rooms and informed us that her husband was soon expected. we therefore concluded to wait his arrival. I observed some sugar cane growing in the garden which appeared quite thrifty. It was not long before we were called to eat the attention of these people being in that respect truly proverbial. we sat down to a table where the Table cloth Napkins and plates were clean and the spoons of Silver but neither knives or forks were there for the common people of this country seldom have these articles. Our repast consisted of a hash highly seasoned with peper. Tortioes (pan cakes) and wine. The blessing was asked by a boy 8 or 9 years old standing at the end of the table with his hands raised. not being pronounced in the usual hurried manner it had much more the appearance of devotion I then thought as now that some of the learned fathers might learn the air of devotion if not the substance from this little boy. Soon after we had finished eating Don Thomas arrived having ascertained our wants he said as his horses were some distance off we could have to remain all night or if we were in a great hurry we could start at one or two O Clock in the morning by which time he could have the horses. At two O Clock we started on our journey and at 8 O Clock arrived at the Mission of San Juan a distance of about 25 miles.  The first part of this distance being traveled in the night I could not so well form an Idea of its appearance. but it seemed much like that we had passed and judging from the noise the wild horses made in running when scared off by our approach or when taking the wind I would think them as numerous as in the country before described. As we approached the Ocan the country became much more hilly. The Mission of San Juan is about a mile from the Ocan in a country hilly and barren. The buildings are similar in construction and arrangement to those at St Gabriel. In the year 1811 the church of this mission was nearly destroyed by an earthquake sinc which time service has been performed in one of the smaller buildings. The number of Indians is not great at this Mission nor is it more than half as rich as that of St Gabriel. On our arrival at San Juan the people were at church as soon as service was over the Steward invited us to take a cup of Chocolate which is a beverage of which the Spaniards are verry fond and of which the higher class make great use particularly in the morning. To Americans they generall offer tea as they have an idea that we are verry fond of it. I have seen them grind tea as they would coffee which is an evidence that they do not make much use of it. My soldier presented his instructions to the Corporal at the Mission who soon supplied us with fresh horses and a new Soldier. we then pushed on: our way leading us for some miles directly along the beach of the Ocean.  The country back rough and hilly. To an old an nearly deserted Mission there being but an overseer and a few indians to occupy it.  From this place our course was S E through hills covered with Bastard cedar till just at night when we arrived at the handsome Mission of San Louis Rey a distance from St Juan I think about 50 miles. This Mission is beautifully situated on a rising piece of ground between two small creeks. The building were similar to those at San Gabriel but appeared better from having been lately whitewashed. On the East Side a Portico extended the whole Length of the buildings.

Remaining there during the night and in the morning making an exchange of soldiers and horses we proceeded on through a hilly country about 30 miles to San Diego. When we arrived at the Presidio I was taken to the office of the Lieutenant and on the arrival of an interpreter procured by Capt Cunningham I was informed that I could not see the Gov until the next day. Presently Capt Dana of the Ship Waverly from the Sandwich Islands came and invited me to his quarters. Having ascertained that I would be at Liberty to choose my residence I accompanied him to a private house about 1/4 of a mile from the Presidio where Capt Cunningham and himself always put up when on shore. Capt Dana was a Bostonian and a verry friendly man.

The following day I went to see the Gov or Genl (as he is known here by both of those titles although when at Mexico I am told he ranked as a Major). When I let him know my situation and my wants he told me it would be some days before he could give me an answer as it would be necessary to call a Council of officers &c. In the mean time he observed I should be furnished with a Room and every necessary with such clothing as I wanted for as I had on my leather Hunting shirt he readily supposed a change would be desirable. I thanked him for his kindness but told him as Capt Cunningham was my Countryman I would prefer remaining with him and being under obligations to him for any supplies I might want. He acquieseed and I accompanied Capt Cunningham on board his Ship Courier and was told to consider it my home. I there became acquainted with Mr Shaw the super cargo Mr Theodore Cunningham 1st mate a brother of the Capt and Mr Blackder 2d Mate.

The Precidio * (* Precidio is a name applied to a town which is the residence of the Governor.) of San Diego is about three miles from the harbor in Latitude     The buildings are in a square somewhat like the Missions but lower and much decayed.  they are on a side hill sloping toward the Ocean. The residence of the Governor is on the East and his portico commands a fine view of the harbor and the Ocean. San Diego contains about 200 inhabitants exclusive of the Mission of the same name which is about 6 miles North East on a small stream which flows into the harbor. The general aspect of the country is hilly and barren with some Scrubby Oak and Pine on the hills but verry little grass.

The harbor of San Diego is formed by two Peninsula's one of which projects into the Ocean directly oposite the Precidio. The entrance is quite narrow but having a great depth of water and being entirely protected from winds this harbor is considered very safe. A Block house or fort on the Peninsula commands the entrance of the harbor.

Several days having passed I called again on his Excellency but could get no answer. He told me he did not know what to do he must see my journal and he likewise took a copy of my chart and License.  He even asked me what business I had to make maps of their country. I told him my maps were made merely to assist me in traveling and must of necessity be verry incorrect as I was destitute of the means for making celestial observations - from this time I was detained day after day and week after week. Sometimes he told me I must wait until he could receive orders from Mexico and at other times he thought it desirable that I should go to Mexico and would then come to the conclusion that it was necessary to send myself and party to Mexico. Whilst my fate depended on the caprice of a man who appeared not to be certain of any thing or of the course his duty required him to pursue and only governed by the changing whims of the hour my feelings can only be duly appreciated by those who have been in the same situation. I knew the eager expectations with which my party at St Gabriel Looked for my return. I felt the ruinous effect which my detention had on my business and the gloomy apprehensions which my protracted absenc would cause to my partners in the distant Mountains. But these considerations never came within the sphere of his Excellency's comprehension and I was harrassed by numerous and contradictory expedient and ruinous delays until about the first of January when his Excellency informed me that if the Americans who were in the harbor of San Diego Masters of Vessels officers and Supercargo would sign a paper certifying that what I gave as the reason of my coming to that country they believed to be substantially correct I might then have permission to trade for such things as I wanted and to return the same route which I had come in.  I had applied for permission to travel directly north that I might arrive as soon as possible on the territory of the United States but this he would not grant Insisting that I should travel the same route by which I had come. The certificate was made out and signed by Capt Wm H. Cunningham Theodore Cunningham and Mr Shaw of the Ship Courier Capt Dana and Mr Robbins of the Waverly Capt Henderson and Mr. Scottie of the Brig __ belonging to Bags & Company of Lima.  The Governor then gave me a passport and License to purchase such supplies as I wanted. I was allowed the privilege of staying but 4 days after my arrival at St Gabriel and strictly forbid to make any more maps for said the Gov even our own Citizens can not make maps unless permission is obtained from Mexico. Although the Governor had obliged me to go to San Diego yet he would not furnish me with horses for my return. But I felt this injustice the less as Capt Cunningham offered me a passage on board of his ship which would sail in a few days for point Pedro the nearest Anchorage to St Gabriel. I accepted this offer the more readily as it would enable me to have my supplies prepared during the passage for they were to be procured from Capt Cunningham. I had found the Governor to more than sustain the character given of him by Senor Martinas and it will be readily supposed that I left him without any other regret than what I felt for the time lost in doing business that might have been done in a few hours or might as well have been left undone. Every thing being ready we sailed and on the third day came to anchor on the East side of the Island of St Catalina.  The Island of Santa Catalina is about 20 W S W from St Pedro. It is about 18 miles long and 8 broad having high hills covered with grass wild onions and some small timber. Capt Cunningham had a house on the Island for the purpose of salting hides.  He was about to take some Cows Hogs and fowls for the use of the men there employed. after remaining at the Island 2 nights we sailed for St Pedro which is merely a good anchorage or road stead.  several Cannon were fired as a Signal to a farmer that lived 8 or 10 Miles off who usually made it his business to come with horses to take people up to the Pueblo or to St Gabriel. As the expected horses did not come we started on foot and continued until we procured horses to take us to the Pueblo los Angelos or the Angels Village. We remained all night at the village and in the morning I called on my friend Sector Abella and made arrangements for the purchase of horses and then in Company with the Capt Mr. Chapman and Mr. Shaw I moved on to the Mission of St. Gabriel where I found my party all well.  I must not omit the cordial welcome with which I was received by father Jose Sanches. He seemed to rejoice in my good fortune and well sustained the favorable opinion I had formed of him. You are now (says he) to pass again that miserable country and if you do not prepare yourself well for it it is your own fault. if there is any thing that you want and that I have let me know and it shall be at your service. I thanked him for his kindness and made every exertion to start as soon as possible. I called on the Commandant to ascertain whether I could stay longer than the 4 days allowed in my passport he told me a day or two would not make any difference. During my absence one of my Indian guides who had been imprisoned was released by death and the other was kept in the guard house at night and at hard labor during the day having the menial service of the guard house to perform. I took a convenient opportunity to speak to the Father in his behalf he told me he would do all in his power for his release. From his expression I took the idea that government had ordered their imprisonment. the fathers had given me some Iron and my Smith had made in the shop of the Mission as many horse shoes as I wanted. He had also given me some saddles and the leather for rigging them. It was on the 10th of January 1827 that I returned from St Diego. The next day I went down to the Courier got my supplies and returned to the Pueblo Los Angelos and put up with my friend F Abella commenced buying horses and in a short time had as many as I wanted. When I left the Courier I took leave of my friend Capt Cunningham. Should chance ever throw this in his way he will perhaps be gratified to find that I have not forgotten his name or his friendship. That I recollect with the most grateful feelings his kind offices in times that made them doubly valuable and in a country to which he had traveled by the unmarked and perilous paths of the Ocean while my way had been through an unknown Land over mountains and parched inhospitable plains. Meeting in a distant country by routes so different gave an instance of that restless enterprise that has lead and is now leading our countrymen to all parts of the world that has made them travellers on every ocean until it can now be said there is not a breeze of heaven but spreads an american flag.

In this place I will give some Ideas in relation to this country of a general nature which may perhaps be interesting. California as I have before observed was settled by Missionaries of the order of St Francis about sixty years since. They established missions in various parts of the country and in civilizing the indians and in imparting to them the benefits of religion they found the opportunity to establish over them the most absolute power. The number of indians under the control of each mission varies from 300 to 2000, which are under the care and direction of a priest who is stiled the father and who sometimes has a subordinate or two. The indian has no individual right of Property although he is told that he has an interest in his labors and in the proceeds of the farms and herds of the Mission. He has not the right or at least the power to marry without the consent of the father. for the sexes are not allowed to Labor together during the day and at night they are shut up in separate apartments. And although since the revolution they are by express provision declared free and the fathers were ordered to inform them of the fact yet it does not appear that it has made any material change in their situation. It is not uncharitable perhaps to suppose that the fathers in making known to them their right to freedom have done it in such a way that it appeared to them from their ignorance a change not to be desired. They said to them - I am told -You live in a good country you have plenty to eat to drink and to wear your father takes care of you and will pray for you and show you the way to heaven. On the other hand if you go away from the Missions where will you find so good a country who will give you cloths or where will you find a father to feed you to take care of you and to pray for you. Such arguments as these coming from a source long respected and venerated and acting on the minds of ignorant and superstitious beings has had the effect to keep the indians in their real slavery without the desire of freedom.  whatever the causes may be the fact is certain that verry few have availed themselves of the privilege of the revolution. The Missions setting aside their religious professions are in fact Large farming and grazing establishment conducted at the will of the father who is in a certain degree responsible to the President of his order residing in the Province. The immediate supervision of the different kinds of business is confided to Overseers who are generally half Breeds raised in a manner somewhat better than the common mass under the eye of the father from whom they sometimes receive a limited education and to whom in some instances they might with strict propriety apply the name of father -The indians are employed in the different kinds of work attendant uppon farming and herding of stock the manufacturing of Blankets of coarse wool which form their principle clothing the making of soap of Brick and in distilling. Their labor does not appear to be unreasonably hard. They are required to attend church regularly every morning after which they immediately move off under the direction of their respective overseers to the business of the day.

Left St Gabriel and moved on toward St Bernardino the most distant farm house belonging to the Mission being about 60 miles from St Gabriel and a few miles south of the route by which I had come in. In three days I arrived at St. Bernardino where I remained several days drying Beef and breaking my young horses as well as looking for some that had strayed away.  On leaving father Sanches he directed me to kill Beef and as much as I could dry and to take meal Peas corn wheat or any thing I wanted and such quantities as I chose, in this case as in many others evincing the most benevolent regard for my welfare. Occupied in these preparations for continuing my journey I remained until the 1st day of february 1827 when I left Bernardino accompanied by 2 or three Indians and moved on to the place where I had passed through the Mt and first came in sight of Cattle as I came in to the Beautiful valley of St Gabriel and there I encamped.  the indians that came with me thus far killed a Beef. During the night it snowed and in the morning I again moved on nearly north crossing my old track and on the 3d day from Bernardino I had got on the E side of the Mt where there was no snow.* (* It was in this place I first saw a tree I have named the dirk Pear tree.  It grows from 15 to 30 feet high 12 inches in diameter wood porous bark rough like the walnut. The leaf like the blade of a dirk is about 8 or ten inches long the point resembling that of a porcupine quill.) I was then obliged to turn my course N W for want of water having the low range of Mts on my left and the barren desert on my right. I encamped without water or grass my horses scattered over the country. I was then forced to look for water and grass and was three days employed in collecting my horses. In this country I had observed some track of the Grizly Bear and the Black tailed deer but they were not numerous.

My horses being once more collected I resumed my N W course for Two short days travel the low Mt still on my left and Barren plains on my right when I fell in with some indians who I suppose were runaways from some mission as they had some horses.  I ascertained by enquiry of them that there were some streams and lakes ahead. I engaged a guide to conduct me to them and after two days travel still continuing my N W direction I arrived at a Lake called by the Spaniards Too Larree or flag Lake.  I arrived at the Lake quite late and found the bank so muddy that it was impossible for my horses to get any water yet I was obliged to encamp. From what I could learn of the Indians the Spaniards had named it from report but be that as it may the name was quite appropriate. Too Larre Lake is about 12 miles in circumference and is in a fine Large valley which commences about 12 miles South of it. Coming into the valley from the South East I had passed over a range of hills which in their cours a little East of North appeared to increase in heighth.  On the declivity of these hills there was some Oak timber. I observed the trees had many holes made in their trunks in which an acorn was pressed so tight that it was difficult to get it out. By watching I found this to be the work of a bird of the woodpecker kind who takes this method to lay up his stock of provision for the winter. The bird is of a seal color and somewhat larger than the red head woodpecker. I called this bird the Provident woodpecker.  The following day in moving along the bank of the Lake I surprised some indians who immediately pushed out into the lake in canoes or rather rafts made of flag. My guide succeeded in getting them to return to the shore. One of them could talk some Spanish and I engaged him for a guide. I watered my horses and got some fish from the indians (who I observed had some horses stolen no doubt from the Spaniards) and moved on about 3 miles along the Lake and then up an inlet about 10 miles crossed over and encamped.  On this inlet was some timber Cotton wood and willow. where I crossed it was 8 or 10 yard wide rapid current a feet deep and comes from the East. Several Indians some of them having horses visited the encampment. The principal characters brought with them each a small sack of down and sprinkled me from head to foot. To this I submitted knowing it was a custom among them and wishing to avoid giving offence.  They told me of a river to the north that had an animal which I supposed from their description to be the Beaver although they had no name for the animal by which it was known to me. These indians call themselves Wa-ya-la-ma.  The indian that spoke spanish and the same I engaged at the flag Lake told me he would go on with me and my other guide returned. On the following day I moved Northwardly 15 miles across low hills which were spurs of the mountain on the East.  This mountain had been gradually increasing in elevation and had now attained a considerable heighth. The next day I moved nearly North West 30 miles over a level country the ground being so completely undermined by the paths of an animal like the Lizard that the horses were continually sinking in the Earth frequently up to the nees. I encamped on the bank of a Lake.  Since leaving the wa ya la ma the country has been dry and destitute of water and grass. I found water in but one place in the bed of a stream which was nearly dry.  East of my route at the foot of the Mt there was some timber and plenty of grass and water. The Lake on which I encamped was apparently large extending to the N W so far that the shore was not visible. But as I supposed it not more than 80 miles to the Ocean I did not think it of verry great extent. It appeared shallow from the number of Boggy Islands seen in many parts of it.

Near where I encamped was an Indian village of two or three hundred inhabitants.  Their Lodges were built of willows and Mats. the willows were placed in the ground in rows at the distance of ten feet apart and bent over and joined together at the top and then covered with the mats forming a Lodge in exterior appearance like a line of barracks and about 100 yards in length with a door at proper intervals for each family.  My provision being nearly exhausted I visited the village for the purpose of trading for some provision. My interpreter having gone before to inform them of my approach when I arrived some mats were spread in front of the Lodges and I was invited to sit down. Grass seed was then brought and poured on my head until I was nearly covered. This seed which was gathered during the summer formed at this time the principal subsistenc of these indians. I gave them some presents and after some conversation with the chiefs made arrangement to have my grass seed formed into meal. At night I was invited to attend a dance and went to the Lodge at 8 O Clock and found a seat prepared for me. I was immediately treated with some roasted fish and a mush made of the grass seed. After supper the dancers came in 10 or 12 in number and seated themselves in a cluster. they were painted and some of them had head dresses made of feathers and a skin around the waist.

Having remained at this encampment two days I moved north along the beach of the Lake and again encamped, on a low spot of ground on the beach. durring the night a high north west wind raised the water of the Lake and drove it into my encampment so that I was obliged to remove to higher ground. East of this encampment a level country with but little vegetation extends to the foot of the mountain a distance of about 20 miles. On the following day I left the Beach of the Lake as my guide said there was a stream putting in which I could not cross near its mouth I therefore traveled North Eastwardly and at 18 miles encamped on a small River 20 yds wide deep and Muddy with low Oak timber along its banks.  During the day I saw several antelops and some Elk sign and passed a country like the last described* (*One of my men (John Willson) again manifesting that seditious disposition of which I had before had reason to complain and which could not be suffered consistently with the subordination necessary to the safety of my party I was forced to discharge him. I found two Indians who spoke spanish and engaged them to conduct him to the upper settlement of California which they said they could reach in 3 days.) The next day I crossed the stream carrying my goods over on a Log and swimming my horses and traveled North Eastwardly 12 miles crossing several small streams having oak timber and a plenty of grass on their banks. The soil was verry fine and although somewhat wet yet it produced most excellent grass. The prairae and woodland was mingled in pleasing variety and my encampment was on a small stream in a fine little grove of timber.  My guide informed me that in the neighborhood was a plenty of Elk. I therefore sent some men hunting they killed 2 antelope and found Elk but killed none.

In company with my guide I visited some Indians that were up near the foot of the Mt and at the distance of about 15 miles. Their Lodges were built like those before described at the Chin-to-che Lake.  The country appeared populous but the soil gravelly and not as rich as at the encampment. near the Mt there is a good deal of Oak timber the trees having large trunks but Low and spreading tops so that it is not of the most valuable kind for building or fencing. My guide saying he was unacquainted with the country further north I engaged another who told me that in one day I could travel to where I could find Beaver - Having remained two days at the last mentioned encampment I moved on N Westwardly 25 miles crossing in the course of the day 2 small streams and encamping near a large indian village on the bank of a river 80 yds wide where I found some Beaver sign.  These Indians called themselves Wim-mil-che and this name I applied to the river which comes from E N E.  In the vicinity was considerable timber (Oak) and a plenty of grass. The game of the country was principally Elk and Antelope. On the 28th of February I commenced trapping on the Wimmilche and during 10 days I moved up the river 25 or 30 miles. I was then near the foot of the Mt and finding no further inducement for trapping and the indians telling me of a river they called the Peticutry in which there was beaver I traveled north along near the foot of the Mt about 15 miles and encamped on the bank of the Peticutry * (* at the place where I first struck the Peticutry were a great number of small artificial mounds.) running at this place west and not quite as large as the Wim mil che. In this vicinity the plains are generally clothed with grass and were at that time covered withe Blossoms. Along the river there is some timber. At the foot of the Mt the timber is Oak and far up the Mt Pine.

The Peticutry runs west 10 miles and then turns N N W. I continued trapping down this river about 35 miles after it turned N W. It there received a stream from the East 60 yards wide called the Noto. The Peticutry had received some small streams from the East above the bend the banks were high and the current rapid but below the river had ben divided into many small Slous and channels the banks low and the current sluggish. In many places Flags rushes and mud a mile in width made it impassible for horses. On the Noto was a good deal of timber Oak and some Ash. After passing the Noto ten miles Otter river comes in from the E.  It is about 60 yds wide and much resembles the Noto. From the Wim-mil-che a range of hills has extended nearly paralel with my course. Leaving the valley from the foot of the Mt measureing west about 40 miles in width. Six miles beyond Otter river comes in another of the same size from the East which I called the Appelaminy. Since passing the Wimmilch there had been an abundance of Elk and some Antelope and on the West side of the Peticutry plenty of wild horses. Birds of the larger kinds were numerous and particularly birds of passage as this was their season. I saw wild Geese White and Grey Brant Blue and White Heron Cormorant many kinds of Ducks and common Buzzard. Hawks of all Colors. Magpyes. A kind of Pigeon resembling the tame Blue Pigeon 2 or Three kinds of Eagles and a verry larg Bird which I supposed to be the Vulture or the Condor.  Small birds were quite scarce and I saw verry few snakes. The Peticutry would be navigable for large boats as far up as the bend near the Mt. The country Generally is a most excellent grazing country. On the Peticutry noto Otter and Appelamminy Rivers the soil is such as to admit of many fine farms. There might be in places a want of timber but the neighboring Mountain would afford an ample supply which could be easily floated down the streams almost to any desired point  Since I struck the Peticutry I had seen but few indians. The greater part of those that once resided here having (as I have sinc been told) gone in to the Missions of St Joseph and Santa Clara.

The Mountain on the East which I called St Joseph in honor of one of the best of men father Joseph Sances of St Gabriel had been gradually increasing in heighth from the place where I crossed its southern extremity near the Too Larree Lake and running north and nearly parallel with the General course of my travel had for some distance attained a most tremendous heighth. The summits could hardly ever be seen as they rose far into the region of perpetual snow and were generally enveloped in clouds. But when the clouds for a while passed away and brought the Peaks to view rising from their dark base covered with snow and gleaming in the sun they possessed an unsurpassed grandeur and Sublimity.

On leaving my partners in the Mountains to go into an unknown country It had been my intention to return at the expiration of my falls hunt or if this was found impracticable by the 1st of July of the following year 1827. Circumstances already related having rendered it impossible for me to join them at the first mentioned time and the second being rapidly approaching It became necessary that I should begin making arrangements for marching Eastward toward the Rendevous in the Mountains which I then looked on as a home. I had several packs of Beaver and the month of April was nearly gone. Mt St Joseph on the East and between me and the rendezvous presented in its appearance an inpassible Barrier. I determined I would leave the Peticutry and ascend the appelamminy to the Mountain and then proceed north along its base and endeavor to find a pass. Accordingly I ascended the appelamminy to the foot of the Mt a distance of about 35 miles and the course generally East. The country like the last described. I then traveled north at the base or among the spurs of the Mt about 20 miles where I struck a river about 30 yds wide rapid current and running N W. On this river which I called the Macal-lum-bry indians appeared quite numerous amounting to several hundred Lodges and residing in several different villages. their Lodges were small and built of dirt.

On the Appelamminy I had engaged a guide to come with thus far who spoke some spanish. I had a consultation with the chiefs and made them some presents and procured another guide who was like the most of those I had had befor a runaway from some Mission. I then moved down the Macallumbry 12 miles and turning from it to the North East in 15 miles I struck a stream 30 yds wide rocky and rapid running west. This stream I called Rock River. In crossing it I had a good deal of difficulty. One of my horses was swept down by its rapid current and the load consisting of 12 traps was lost. I was detained a day in searching for my traps but without sucess, and my guide ran away taking with him two of my horses. In the course of the day 8 or 10 Indians showed themselves on a high hill. They were apparently strangers and knew not what to think of us as I supposed by their actions. They were naked and had their Bows and arrows in their hands. I went to them alone and gave them some presents and they went off. The country since leaving the Appelamminy has been rough my course having been over the spurs of the Mt the timber Oak and rather scrubby plenty of grass and water a fine grazing country. Leaving Rock River I traveled N W down into the plain and passed several indian villages. Each village consisting of 30 or 40 small dirt Lodges the indians verry wild ran screaming into the woods.* (*These indians as well as some others may be called Grass eaters. they subsist to a certain extent on clover wild Pea vines and some other herbs which are prepared for eating by wilting them on hot stones.) The first six miles of the days travel was in the spurs of the Mt. I then descended into the plain and traveled 9 miles alternately through groves of Oak Prairaes and Meadows of Blue Clover watered by small streams.  The game of this vicinity in the Mts is Blk tailed Deer and in the plains Antelope. In the course of the day when I saw the indians so wild I took a man with me and pursued a couple of females and overtook them my object being to convince them of our friendship. I gave them some awls and beads at the same time endeavoring to convince them that I did not wish to hurt them but our parley was broken off by a party of indians who rushed from their concealment close at hand and with intentions apparently not the most friendly made it necessary for us to rejoin the party without delay. At another time during this day I rode a short distance ahead of the Party and was waiting in a small grove for them to come up. At a small distance I saw an indian and beckened to him to come to me. He advanced slowly chatting and making many signs to divert my attention. I was somewhat suspicious and kept a good look out and in a moment I found myself nearly surrounded by a considerabl party I immediately gave my horse the spur and left my sociable friend to converse with those that could better understand him. On the following day I moved N W 12 miles across a prairae and encamped on a river 40 yds wide running S W. Some Oak timber and a considerabl Beaver sign. My men went out to set traps and soon I heard the cry of the indians the men from below coming in at full speed and saying that two of them had been attack by the indians and narrowly escaped. Some men were above setting their traps. I immediately sent Arthur Black for them but before they got in they were closely pressed. I had the horses tied up and each man his saddle horse ready for mounting and a double guard. But the indians gave us no opportunity to punish them as they were all soon on the other side of the river which was not fordable. The next morning early I took six men and went for the traps that had been set before the alarm. I found some of them but a good many had been taken by the indians who showed themselves on the opposite side of the river. and one venturing within long shot was fired at by a Rifleman and killed. I moved up the River which I called indian River 3 miles and finding a ford crossed over and leaving the river traveled north about 12 miles when I struck another River Running W S W 100 yds wide rapid current and stony bottom.  A considerable body of Oak timber along its banks Indians by hundreds but wilder than antelopes running and screaming in every direction. It appeared to me that the farther I traveled north the indians became more numerous. The River on which I encamped I called wild River. I determined to change my course and make a trial towards passing the mountain. I supposed that the snow had become sufficiently hard by that time to bear my horses. I therefore turned East and at first traveled up wild River and then took the divide between wild and Indian Rivers. for the first two days I found no snow the traveling not worse than might be expected. The timber thus far principally Oak and on the second day some verry large cedar. Indians were numerous and I was frequently passing their little villages of 10 or 12 little circular Lodges made of old trees and bark. During these two days the indians collected in great numbers around me at two different times. I endeavored to convince them of my disposition to be friendly by every means in my power but to no purpose. They considered all my friendly signs caused by my own weakness. Of our guns they had never seen the effects and supposed them solid sticks which we could only use in close contest. Whatever may have been their views they pressed so closely and in such numbers on my party that I was obliged to Look for an advantageous piece of ground on which to make a stand against the threatened danger. Having found a favorable position I again tried to convince them of my friendly disposition but to no purpose. Their preparations were still going forward and their parties were occupying favorable points around me. Seeing what must be the inevitable consequence I determined to anticipate them in the commencement and wishing to them as little harm as possible and yet consistant with my own safety I ordered a men to fire (of course not the most uncertain marksmen). I prefered long shots that it might give them the idea that we could kill at any distance. At the report of the guns both men firing at once two indians fell. For a moment the indians stood still and silent as if a thunder bolt had fallen among them then a few words passed from party to party and in a moment they ran like Deer. The other afray was similar to the above described except that more guns were fired and more Indians were killed. I had been gradually rising as I advanced in the Mt and on the 3d day left the Oak timber and arrived among the Pine some of which was verry large the hemlock and the snow. I found the snow so solid that my horses did not sink in it more than a foot. In the ascent of the mountain among the oak timber there was some Black Tailed deer but in the region of the snow no living animal was seen unless it might be the Mt Pheasant which made a lonely sound like that of Striking on a muffled drum at intervals of 2 seconds. My encampment of the third night was where the snow was about 3 feet deep. On the 4th I started early directly on the Divid E and turning S E. Snow increasing in depth as we advanced and becoming less compact timber had disappeared except a little hemlock that grew in the deep ravine. Still in advancing the snow became deeper and less compact and when I had got about 12 miles from my encampment the horses began to sink so deep as to render the prospect of proceeding verry doubtful. we were not yet at the highest part of the Mt and the distances across was unknown. This was our situation when news came up from the rear that some of the horses had given out being able to proceed no further. It was at once apparent that If I proceeded farther I should be obliged to leave my horses or at least the greater part of them and as we knew not how far the Mountain extended to the East it was more than probable that in attempting to cross it we might ourselves be lost. On the other hand should I retrace my steps I would be obliged to pass among indians highly exasperated against us who if not warlike were sufficiently numerous if acting in concert to surround our little party and kill us with clubs and should I be so fortunate as to return to the foot of the Mountain in safety what could I do. To travel north seemed useless for far as I could see with my glass the Mt seemed to increase in heighth offering no probability of a pass. To return around the Mountain South by the way of St Gabriel would take so much time that I could not possible arrive at the Depo in season to meet my partners. These reflections were passing rapidly through my mind as I stood on a high Peak a mile in advance of my party having called a halt for the purpose of viewing the prospect before me.  Far as the eye could see on every side high rugged Peaks arose covered with Eternal snow turning to the East the frozen waste extending rough and desolate beyond the boundaries of vision warned me to return. Below the deep Rocky ravines resounded with immense Cascades and waterfalls where the melting snow and ice was fast hastening to the fertile Plain. The sight in its extended range embraced no living being except it caught a transient glimpse of my little party awaiting my return in the snows below. It was indeed a freezing desolation and one which I thought should keep a man from wandering. I thought of home and all its neglected enjoyments of the cherfull fireside of my father house of the Plenteous harvest of my native land and visions of flowing fields of green and wide spread Prairaes of joyous bustle and of busy life thronged in my mind to make me feel more strongly the utter desolateness of my situation. And is it possible thought I that we are creatures of choice and that we follow fortune through such paths as these. Home with contented industry could give us all that is attainable and fortune could do no more.

Surely of all lives the hunters is the most precarious, we endure all the extremes of heat and cold hunger and thirst our lives and property are always at hazard. when we lay down our guards must be placed our Rifles by our sides and our Pistols under our heads ready to spring up at once from our wakeful sleep. I did not indulge in these reflections longer than I have been employed in writing them and they are here as they existed in that hour of trying fortune and will be remembered as long as I live. But the recollection that my party were entirely depending on my movements broke my reverie and convinced me of the necessity of immediate and powerful exertion to extricate myself and party from surrounding difficulties. I suddenly came to the resolution that I would retrace my steps Back in to the valley and to the Appelamminy. by this time as the season was advancing the snow would become more compact* (*There may be some who are not aware of the fact that the snow on those mountains that are continually covered with it in mid summer becomes more solid and compact than in the depth of winter It is for this reason principally that the summer is the most favorable time to cross snowy mountains.) but as time would not allow me to go on with my whole party I would take 2 men and light horses leaving my property and the remainder of my party on the Appelamminy and make another attempt to cross the Mt and go to the Depo. Should I be so fortunate as to go through I would take a new supply of Men and Goods and return again to the Appelamminy and endeavor to learn something of this new and unfortunate country. This conclusion was quickly formed and I immediately descended from the Peak and returned to my party. I told my men of the dismal prospect ahead and of the necessity of turning back. We then immediately commenced our retrograde movement and encamped somewhat west of the place on which we had encamped the night before. On the north at a short distance was a considerable branch of wild river running in a tremendous gulph and beyond was a Peak that seemed to rise far above any other part of the Mt. Among many lofty Peaks it seemed the Giant of the scene. To this summit I had the vanity to attach my name. If an honor it was dearly won as those will admit whose fortune it may be hereafter to follow my steps. On the following day we continued back on the trail until we came to a place where there was some grass and there encamped. Having no provision we killed a horse to eat. remaining at this place two days for the purpose of recruiting my fatigued and starved horses I then moved on towards the plain but instead of keeping the route by which I had come up I turned south and traveled along indian River and in two days arrived in the valley.  In the course of this time as I was riding ahead of the party I rose to the top of a small hill. An indian was carelessly walking at a short distance. he heard the sound of my horses feet. turning his head he saw me. he sprang ran a few steps. his bow and arrows flew from his hands he staggered and fell on his face. I went to him turned him over he was apparently lifeless but presently recovered so far as to open his eyes. I put a piece of Tobacco in his hand and left him without being able to make him stand or even sit up. After I had encamped several Indians and this one among the rest came and sit down on an adjoining hill. I went to them gave them some small and endeavored to make them understand that it was my wish to be friendly. They slept near camp all night but I would not allow them to come in although they appeared quite willing to do so. Shortly after this riding along close by the river in turning a short bend I came suddenly on a lodge of indians and took them by surprise some of them plunged into the river and swam away. two or three women more thoughtful than the rest concluded they might save themselves and some of their property by the following expedient. they sent an old man to detain us by chat while they took such things as they could handily get hold off and sliped under cover of the Lodge to the river and swam over to a little island holding the dishes under the water. Without attempting to disturb them I let the old man know that I saw what was going on and also that we were hungry. He brought us some acorn mush * (*This is a common dish of this country. The acorns are hulled pounded into meal and made into mush. It is Boiled in dishes by the help of hot stones. If they have no dishes they make a hole in the ground and line its sides with clay. In many parts of this country acorns appear to be the principal subsistence. In my tour into the mountains I saw in places where there was not more than 5 or 6 Lodges 3 or 4 hundred Bushels cribed ready for use.) I gave him something in return and went to the Lodge. Those that had not yet ran off were skulking about like children playing hide and seek. After endeavoring to quiet their fears I left them & have no doubt but the departure was more pleasant to them than the arrival. On our arrival in the valley we were much fatigued and hungry having for six days had but little to eat except the colt and one Beaver. At night however we got some trap set. In my Promenade into the Mountain I had gone about 60 miles from the base lost 6 horses and learned one thing which I did not know before that I must be sometime turned back. In the morning we had caught several Beaver and of course had something good to eat much better than the flesh of the poor colt. Continuing to march down Indian River I crossed it in the place where I had before crossed as I traveled north in doing which the horse on which my ammunition was packed stepping in the middle of the River and breaking loose from the leader was washed down below the ford drowned and sunk in the deep water. This was indeed a terrible blow for if our ammunition was lost with it went our means of subsistence and we were at once deprived of what enabled us to travel among hostile bands feared and respected. But my thoughts I kept to myself knowing that a few words from me would discourage my men. I immediately set 2 men on the bank of the river to watch knowing this fact without knowing the reason that a horse unless kept down by a heavy load will rise to the surface in from 10 to 30 minutes. By the time the party had crossed over the men on the bank told me they thought they could see one of the horses feet the load keeping the animal from floating off. One of the men who was a good swimmer went in and fastening a cord the whole was pulled out together. Besides Lead there was 25 or 30 lbs of powder in the pack but as it was in a good leather sack but a part of it was damaged. Although this happened within three miles of the place where the indians had manifested their hostility by attacking my trappers and stealing my traps yet there was not an indian to be seen - On the following day I traveled South and encamped a short distance North of Rock River in the course of the day I killed an Elk. At Rock River I was detained a day having to make a raft and meeting with some difficulty in crossing. The next south to the McKalumbry and the following day to the Appelamminy passing a good many Elk and killing one fine fat doe. I then moved up the Appelaminy a few miles to a place where I found a suitable place and encamped with the intention of remaining several days in order to make the necessary preparations for my journey across the Mt to the Depo. The time was employed in pressing and cacheing my furs killing Game and drying meat shoeing some horses and making some hay to feed them in the Mt * (*while at this place the Mackalumbry chief brought one of the horses stolen from me on Rock River. I gave him some presents and he engaged to bring the other.)

I gave Mr Rodgers instructions to remain in the vicinity leaving a note at the cache with directions that would enable me to find him whenever I should return. If the 20th of September should arrive without my return he might then consider me dead. In that case he was to proceed to Bodega and get supplies and if possible make his way to the Depo. If this was found impracticable he was then to dispose of his property wait an opportunity to ship to the sandwich Islands and from thence to the United States. On the 20th of May 1827 my preparations being finished I took leave of my small but faithful party and started on an enterprise involved in great uncertainty. I took but two men with me Robert Evans and Silas Goble. I had six horses and two mules. I had about 60 lbs of meat and a part of my horses were packed with hay to feed them during the passage of the Mountains.* (*three men accompanied me with some extra horses.) Traveling east 12 miles I stoped at the foot of the Mt for dinner and then continued on N N E 13 miles through very rough traveling and encamped on the North side of the Appelminy.  Some friendly indians were seen in the course of the day.

21st      N E 30 miles following the river the traveling rough rugged and mountainous.

22nd    12 miles N E    In the morning the three men that had come with me thus far returned and I struck out from the River. Saw no indians although we heard the yell of some on the opposite side of the river when we left camp.

23rd     20 miles N N E passed several indian lodges but as is the custom here the indians ran off yelling and shouting. I encamped on the divide between Rock River and the Appelamminy.

24th     15 miles N E    following the divide at 8 miles from Camp I came to the snow which soon increased to 4 feet in debth but so solid that the horses did not sink in it more than 6 or 8 inches. at night I found a place where the ground was bare and a little grass growing on a southern slope of a Mt there I encamped.

25th     18 miles N E    Keeping the divide and over the snow which soon increased to the debth of 8 feet at 3 O Clock it turned cold and commenced snowing. I was obliged to encamp found a few pines for shelter tied up my horses to keep them from running away and gave them some of the hay I had packed from the valley. During the night the storm increased in violence and the weather became extremely cold.

26th The Storm still continued with unabated violence. I was obliged to remain in camp. It was one of the most disagreeable days I ever passed. We were uncertain how far the Mountain extended to the East. The wind was continually changing and the snow drifting and flying in every direction. It was with great difficulty that we could get wood and we were but just able to keep our fire. Our poor animals felt a full share of the vengeanc of the storm and 2 horses and one mule froze to death before our eyes. Still the storm continued with unabated violence and it required an utmost exertion to avoid the fate of the poor animals that lay near but almost covered with the drifting snow. Night came and shut out the bleak desolation from our view but it did not still the howling winds that yet bellowed through the mountains bearing before them clouds of snow and beating against us cold and furious. It seemed that we were marked out for destruction and that the sun of another day might never rise to us. But He that rules the Storms willed it otherwise and the sun of the 27th rose clear uppon the gleaming peaks of the Mt St Joseph. I shall never forget the 26th of May 1827. Its incidents are engraven on my mind as well as the grateful feeling with which my heart was expanded when the storm was stilled.

On the 27th we resumed our journey N E 12 miles over the snow. The last fall of 15 inches in addition to what the horses sank in the old snow made the traveling verry fatigueing. Passing across a deep ravine and ascending a high point I could discover the plain. Thence N 13 miles the snow decreasing gradually until going down a high and steep hill it entirely disappeared and I came into a valley where there was some good grass. A valuable horse gave out and was left in the snow. I also lost my Pistol.

28th     As my horses were much fatigued I lay by. The general range of the Mountain at this place was about N W & S E. My encampment was about 100 yards from a high and steep bluff on the top of which at about 12 O Clock 10 or 12 indians showed themselves and raised the accustomed yell but not succeeding in scaring us off they collected a great many large rocks and being all ready at once sent them down the hill at the same time raising the yell. Finding that even this would not drive us away they went off.

29th     N E 18 miles    I left the water course on which I was encamped running N W & passing over some rocky hills came to and crossed a Creek coming from the South East about 50 yards and running N W and uniting about 6 miles below with the one on which I had encamped. I surprised two squaws and was so close to one of them that she could not well escape such an expression of fear I had never before seen exhibited. She ran towards me screaming and raising the stick with which she had been digging roots in her whole appearance realizing the Idea I had formed of a frantic mother rushing to scare away some beast that would devour her child. wishing not to hurt her I avoided her formidable weapon and endeavored to pacify her but all in vain for when she went off her screams were still heard until lost in the distance. In the course of the day I saw some Antelope sign.

30th     15 Miles East   crossed some high hills and came to a Stream 50 yds wide running N E. Crossed over and encamped on the East side. In this vicinity I saw some horse sign. On the N N E & E were ranges of high hills.

31st      16 miles East and encamped on a shallow creek 30 yds wide* (* in the course of this days travel I saw Salt of beautiful appearance that had lost its savor and was entirely tasteless.) running north. Some Antelopes were seen but verry wild.

June 1st 22 Miles E S E crossing a high range of hills running north & south I came to a lake extending from S E to N W supposed about 20 miles although its northerly limit was unknown and apparently about 8 miles broad. As I was near the southern extremity of the Lake I went around in that direction in doing which I saw a considerable horse sign and seeing some indians at a Lodge I got close to them before they discovered that we were not indians they then immediately ran off. I took some fish that I found at the lodge and left some small presents in their rooms. I went on a little further where there was several families encamped. they were fishing with nets verry neatly made with fine meshes. I gave them some small presents they appeared verry friendly. I went 2 miles further and encamped near where three indians were fishing. I turned out my horses as usual and went to sleep. About ten O Clock at night I was awakened by the sound of horses feet. I started up and 20 or 30 horsemen rode by at full speed to where the fishermen were encamped. I awakened the men we collected our things together and made of them as good a breast work as we could and prepared ourselves for extremities. Presently 2 indians came as if to see if we were asleep. But finding we were awake they came close and sit down. I offered them some Tobacco but they would not take it. They returned to their companions and soon all came and surrounded us with their Bows strung and their arrows in their hands. They sat down and consulted with each other talking loud and harsh and frequently changing places some times all being on one side and then on the other. To the one that seemed the principal character I offered some presents but he would take nothing turning from me with disdain. If my horses had been tied I should most certainly have fired on them but as they were loose and as there was a possibility that they might not commence I thought it prudent not to be the agressor but to hold ourselves in readiness to beat them off or sell our lives as dear as possible. After about two hours they became peaceable and made a fire. I then offered them some tobacco they took it smoked and remained all night. It will be readily conjectured that I kept a verry close watch during the remainder of the night. I do not know how to account for the singular conduct of the indians. They did not appear unanimous for the massacre and perhaps saw our intention of making our scalps bear a good price. we should not have fallen without some of them in company .

June 2d            In the morning they appeared friendly and told me that there was water to the East in the direction I wished to travel. I observed these indians had some Buffalo Robes knives and Spanish Blankets from which it appears they have some communication with the indians on Lewis's River and with the spanish indians. I moved on East about 20 miles and was obliged to encamp without water. The indians no doubt well knew there was no water and intended to deceive me and send me where I might perish for the want of it.

3d        28 miles E N E Having in that direction seen a snowy hill the day before I steered for it and just after night found water and encamped. In the course of the day a light shower of rain. Some Antelopes were seen but verry wild. One of my horses gave out and was left three miles back on the trail.

4th I sent back for the tired horse and had him brought up and then moved on N E 3 miles to a range of high hills running N and S & encamped.

5th       N E 15 miles over high ranges of hills bearing N & S.

6th       E 12 miles then N E 6 miles and encamp on a creek running East.

7th       E 15 miles crossing a plain and at the foot of a hill found water where I stopped for dinner. then crossing the range of hills and following an indian trail N 10 miles found water and good grass and encamped. saw an indian to day.

8th       As my horses were much fatigued and the grass was tolerable good I concluded to rest. The general Character and appearance of the country I have passed is extremely Barren. High Rocky hills afford the only relief to the desolate waste for at the feet of these are found water and some vegetation While the intervals between are sand barren Plains.

9th       S S E 12 miles and finding it necessary to change my course to E N E I traveled 12 miles Leaving a high hill on the North and found a little spring in the plain by which I encamped. In the course of the day saw fresh sign of indians.

10th     28 miles E        at 10 O Clock found the water and grass in the plain & stopped for the horses to eat. I there found an Indian and 2 squaws who had no opportunity of running away. I endeavored to talk a little with them by signs but found them too stupid or wilful. They had a piece of a Buffalo robe and a Beaver skin which last I bought of them - at 11 O Clock I continued my course E. Our remaining horses had now become so weak that we were general obliged to walk. At 3 O Clock one of them gave out and was left in the plain. Having crossed two Ranges of hills just after dark I discovered a fire and steered towards it. and found an Indian Squaw and 2 children who were of course much frightened. They appeared to be travelers having with them some water which they divided with us. I then for the first time saw scorpions prepared to eat. I went a short distance and encamped without water. During the night it rained which of course refreshed the horses.

11th     E 20 miles across a valley. Soon after starting I found a little water in some holes collected from the last rain. I encamped in a range of high hills where I found water. At that time we were on allowance of 4 ounces of dried meat per day and hardly the possibility of killing anything.

12th 25 miles East Crossed over the range of hills on the top of which I found some Aspin and service Bushes.  then crossing a valley I found a little water and encamped but without grass. In the course of the day I killed a hare. I mention this for in this country game is so scarce and wild that it is a most hopeless task to kill anything. An Antelope or Black tailed deer may sometimes be seen solitary and wild as the wind.

13th     E 15 miles crossed a plain and another range of hills high and Rocky finding no water and observing a smoke to the North I traveled in that direction 15 miles and found water and grass and encamped. In the course of the day I saw several Antelopes but could not get a shot and in the evening an Indian but he ran off.

14th     North 8 miles along a wet piece of ground on the E side of which I encamped. My horses were so much reduced that it was necessary to give them rest and for this reason I made a short days travel.

15th     N E 10 miles and encamped at the head of the springs which forms the wet ravine on which I had made my last two encampments.

16th     I lay by to rest. for 12 days I have been with my two men on an allowance of   ounces of dried meat per day and the last of it was eat for supper last night. No possibility of killing any game. My horses extremely poor and one so lame in his hind feet as to be unable to travel. He was shod before but his hind feet were worn to the quick. As a last resource for provision I determined to kill this horse and dry some of the best of his meat. Accordingly in the morning I had him killed. It was bad eating but we were hungry enough to eat almost any thing.

17th     E N E 30 miles crossing 2 ranges of Rocky hills and the intervening valleys and encamp in a 3d range of hills without water having seen none since morning.

18th     E 10 miles  starting early I crossed the chain on which I was encamped but seeing no prospect of water Eastwardly I turned N E and after traveling 10 miles I fell in with some indians 14 in number. we were then close to water which happened verry well for one of my men had stoped a short distance back being able to proceed no further. The Indians went with me to the spring and I sent one of them with a little kettle of water to the man that was left behind. After drinking he was sufficiently refreshed to come up. The Indians gave me two small ground squirrels which we found somewhat better than the horse meat. They likewise showed me a kind of water rush which they ate. I tasted of it and found it pleasant  I had three horns for the purpose of carrying water. In these sandy plains we filled them at every opportunity But I seldom drank more than half a pint before they were exhausted for neither of my men could do as well without water as myself.

19th 15 miles N E as a high range of hills lay on the East I was obliged to travel N E to a low gape in the chain and then crossing over encamped on the East side we there found some onions which made the horse meat relish much better.

20th     N E 20 miles along a valley sandy as usual and just at night found water. In this part of the plain almost all the high hills have snow on their tops. But for these snowy Peaks the country would be utterly impassible as they furnish almost the only grass or water of this unhospitable land. They are to this plain like the islands of the Ocean. Rising but a short distance from the sandy base the snowy region commences which is an evidence of the great elevation of this plain.

The re after encamping some Indians came to me. They appeared verry friendly. These as well as those last mentioned I supposed were somewhat acquainted with whites as I saw among them some Iron arrow points and some Beads. They gave me some squirrels and in return I gave them presents of such little things as I had after which they went to their camp and we our rest.

21st      25 miles North. Early this morning the Indians that were at the camp last night returned and with them several others. They seemed to have come out of mere curiosity and as I was ready for starting they accompanied me a short distance. Some of them I presume had never before seen a white man and as they were handling and examining almost every thing I fired off my gun as one of them was fingering about the double triggers. At the sound some fell flat on the ground and some sought safety in flight. The indian who had hold of the gun alone stood still although he appeared at first thunder struck yet on finding that he was not hurt he called out to his companions to return. I endeavored to learn from those indians by signs something in relation to the distance and course to the Salt Lake But from them I could get no satisfaction whatever for instead of answering my signs they would imitate them as nearly as possible. After vexing myself for some time with those children of nature I left them and continued on my way. All the indians I had seen since leaving the Lake had been the same unintelligent kind of beings. Nearly naked having at most a scanty robe formed from the skin of the hare peculiar to this plain which is cut into narrow strips and interwover with a kind of twine or cord made apparently from wild flax or hemp. They form a connecting link between the animal and intelectual creation and quite in keeping with the country in which they are located. In the course of the day I passed water several times. It came out from a range of hills on the west on the top of which was some snow. I encamped on the bank of a Salt Lake. The water was verry salt and a good deal of salt was formed along the beach. In crossing a mirey place just before encamping one of my horses was mired. After some considerable exertion I found it impossible to get him out I therefore killed him and took a quarter of his flesh which was a seasonable replenishment for our stock of provision as the little I took of the horse I killed last was at that time exhausted.

North 25 Miles.  My course was nearly parallel with a chain of hills in the west, on the tops of which was some snow and from which ran a creek to the north east.  On this creek I encamped.  The Country in the vicinity so much resembled that on the south side of the Salt Lake that for a while I was induced to believe that I was near that place. During the day I saw a good many Antelope, but could not kill any. I however, killed 2 hares which, when cooked at night we found much better than horse meat.

June 23d N E 35 Miles. Moving on in the morning I kept down the creek on which we had encamped until it was lost in a small Lake. We then filled our horns and continued on our course, passing some brackish as well as some verry salt springs, and leaving on the north of the latter part of the days travel a considerable Salt Plain.  Just before night I found water that was drinkable, but continued on in hopes of finding better and was obliged to encamp without any.

June 24th N E 40 Miles. I started verry early in hopes of soon finding water.  But ascending a high point of a hill I could discover nothing but sandy plains or dry Rocky hills with the exception of a snowy mountain off to the N E at the distance of 50 or 60 Miles.  When I came down I durst not tell my men of the desolate prospect ahead, but framed my story so as to discourage them as little as possible.  I told them I saw something black at a distance, near which no doubt we would find water.

While I had been up on the hill one of the horses gave out and had been left a short distance behind.  I sent the men back to take the best of his flesh, for our supply was again nearly exhausted, whilst I would push forward in search of water.

I went on a shorter distance and waited until they came up. They were much discouraged with the gloomy prospect, but I said all I could to enliven their hopes and told them in all probability we would soon find water.  But the view ahead was almost hopeless.

With our best exertion we pushed forward, walking as we had been for a long time, over the soft sand.  That kind of traveling is verry tiresome to men in good health who can eat when and what they choose, and drink as often as they desire, and to us, worn down with hunger and fatigue and burning with thirst increased by the blazing sands, it was almost insurportable.

At about 4 O Clock we were obliged to stop on the side of a sand hill under the shade of a small Cedar.  We dug holes in the sand and laid down in them for the purpose of cooling our heated bodies.  After resting about an hour we resumed our wearysome journey, and traveled until 10 O Clock at night, when we laid down to take a little repose.  Previous to this and a short time after sun down, I saw several turtle doves, and as I did not recollect of ever having seen them more than 2 or 3 miles from water I spent more than an hour looking for water, but it was in vain.  Our sleep was not repose, for tormented nature made us dream of things we had not and for the want of which it then seemed possible, and even probable, that we might perish in the desert unheard of and unpitied.

In those moments how trifling were all those things that hold such an absolute sway over the busy and the prosperous world.  My dreams were not of Gold or ambitious honors, but of my distant, quiet home, of murmuring brooks, of Cooling Cascades. After a short rest we continued our march and traveled all night. The sound murmur of falling waters still sounding in our ears and the apprehension that we might never live to hear that sound in reality weighed heavily upon us.

June 25th. The sun of this day arose on the parched waste and it seemed to us that we were the most unhappy beings on which it poured its floods of light.

When morning came it saw us in the same unhappy situation, pursuing our journey over the desolate waste, now gleming in the sun and more insuportably tormenting than it had been during the night. About at 10 O Clock Robert Evans laid down in the plain under the shade of a small cedar, being able to proceed no further. We could do no good by remaining to die with him and we were not able to help him along, but we left him with feelings only known to those who have been in the same situation and with the hope that we might get relief and return in time to save his life.

The Mountain of which I have before spoken was apparently not far off, and we left him and proceeded onward in the hope of finding water in time to return with some in season to save his life.  After traveling about traveling about three Miles we came to the foot of the Mt and there, to our inexpressible joy, we found water.  Goble plunged into it at once, and I could hardly wait to bath my burning forehead before I was pouring it down in a regardless of the consequences.

Just before we arrived at the spring I saw two indians traveling in the direction in which Evans was left, and soon after the report of two guns was heard was heard in quick succession.  This considerably increased our apprehension for his safety, but shortly after a smoke was seen back on the trail and I took a small kettle of water and some meat and going back, found him safe.  He had not seen the indians and had discharged his gun to direct me where he lay, and for the same purpose had raised a smoke.

He was indeed far gone, being scarcely able to speak. When I came within hearing but was not yet in sight he the first question he asked me was, have you any water?  I told him I had plenty and handed him the kettle, which would hold 6 or 7 quarts, in which there was some meat mixed with the water.  O says he, why did you bring the meat and putting the kettle to his mouth he did not take it away until he had drank all the water, of which there was at least 4 or 5 quarts, and then asked me why I had not brought more.  This, however, revived him so much that he was able to go on to the spring.

I cut the horse meat and spread it out to dry, and determined to remain for the rest of the day that we might repose our wearied and emaciated bodies. I have at different times suffered the extremes of hunger and thirst.  Hard as it is to bear for successive days the knawings of hunger, yet it is light in comparison to the agony of burning thirst and, on the other hand, I have observed that a man reduced by hunger is some days in recovering his strength.  A man equally reduced by thirst seems renovated almost instantaneously.  Hunger can be endured more than twice as long as thirst.  To some it may appear surprising that a man who has been for several days without eating has a most incessant desire to drink, and although he can drink but little at a time, yet he wants it much oftener than in ordinary circumstances.

In the course of the day several indians showed themselves on the high points of the hills, but would not come to my camp.

26th June N 10 miles along a valley and encamped at some brackish water, having passed during the day several salt springs and one Indian lodge.  The lodge was occupied by 2 indians, one squaw and 2 children.  They were somewhat alarmed, but friendly, and when we made signs to them of being hungry they cheerfully divided with us some antelope meat.  They spoke like the Snake Indians and by enquiry I found that they were Pahnakkee's from Lewis's River.  They had some pieces of Buffalo Robes and told me that after a few days travel to the North East Buffalo were plenty.  Although they knew the Shoshones I could not learn any thing from them in relation to the Salt Lake.  In the evening I discovered from a high piece of ground what appeared to be a large body of water.

June 27th North 10 Miles along a valley in which were many salt springs.  Coming to the point of the ridge which formed the eastern boundary of the valley I saw an expanse of water Extending far to the North and East.  The Salt Lake, a joyful sight, was spread before us.  Is it possible, said the companions of my sufferings, that we are so near the end of our troubles. For myself I durst scarcely believe that it was really the Big Salt Lake that was before me I saw.  It was indeed a most cheering view, for although we were some distance from the depo, yet we knew we would soon be in a country where we would find game and water, which were to us objects of the greatest importance and those which would contribute more than any others to our comfort and happiness.

Those who may chance to read this at a distance from the be surprised scene may perhaps be surprised that the sight of this lake surrounded by a wilderness of More than 2000 thousan Miles diameter excited in me those feelings known to the traveler, who, after long and perilous journeying, comes again in view of his home.  But so it was with me for I had traveled so much in the vicinity of the Salt Lake that it had become my home of the wilderness.

After coming in view of the lake I traveled East, keeping nearly paralel with the shore of the lake.  At about 25 Miles from my last encampment I found a spring of fresh water and encamped. The water during the day had been generally Salt. I saw several antelope, but could not get a shot at them.

28th East 20 Miles, traveling nearly parallel with the shore of the Lake.  When I got within a mile of the outlet of the Uta Lake, which comes in from the south East, I found the ground, which is thick covered with flags and Bulrushes, overflowed to a considerable distance from the channel, and before I got to the channel current the water had increased to between 2 & 3 feet and the cain grass and Bulrushes were extremely thick.

The channel was deep and as the river was high was of course rapid and about 60 yards wide.  As I would have to wade a long distance should I attempt to return before I would find dry land, I determined to make a raft, and for this purpose cut a quantity of Cain Grass, for of this material there was no want. The grass I tied into Bundles, and, attaching them together, soon formed a raft sufficiently strong to bear my things.

In the first place I swam and lead my horse over, the mule following, to the opposite bank, which was also overflowed.  I then returned and, attaching a cord to the raft and holding the end in my mouth, I swam before the raft while the two men swam behind.  Unfortunately neither of my men were good swimmers, and the current being strong, we were swept down a considerable distance, and it was with great difficulty that I was enabled to reach the shore, as I was verry much strangled.

When I got to the shore I put my things on the mule and horse and endeavored to go out to dry land, but the animals mired down and I was obliged to leave my things in the water for the night and wade out to the dry land.  We made a fire of sedge, and after eating a little horse flesh, we laid down to rest.

29th 15 Miles North Early in the morning I brought my things out from the water and spread them out to dry. We were verry weak and worn down with suffering and fatigue, but we thought ourselves near the termination of our troubles, for it was not more than four days travel to the place where we expected to find my partners.

At 10 O Clock we moved onward and after traveling 15 Miles encamped.  Just before encamping I got a shot at a Bear and wounded him badly, but did not kill him.  At supper we ate the last of our horse meat and talked a little of the probability of our suffering being soon at an end.  I say we talked a little, for men suffering from hunger never talk much, but rather bear their sorrows in moody silence, which is much preferable to fruitless complaints.

30th North 15 Miles I started early and as Deer were tolerably plenty I went on ahead and about 8 O Clock got a shot at a Deer he ran off I followed him and found a good deal of blood and told the men to stop while I should look for him.

I soon found him laying in a thicket.  As he appeared nearly dead, I went up to him, took hold of his horns, when he sprang up and ran off.  I was vexed at myself for not shooting him again when it was in my power, and my men were quite discouraged. However, I followed on and in a short time found him again.  I then made sure of him by cutting his ham strings.  It was a fine, fat Buck, and it was not long before we struck up a fire and had some of his meat cooking.  We then employed ourselves most pleasantly in eating for about two hours and for the time being forgot that we were not the happiest people in the world, or at least thought but of our feast that was eaten with a relish unknown to a palace.

So much do we make our estimation of happiness by a contrast with our situation that we were as much pleased with our fat venison on the bank of the Salt Lake as we would have been in the possession of all the Luxuries and enjoyments of a civilised life in other circumstances.  These things may perhaps appear trifling to most readers, but let any one of them travel over the sand plain as I did and they will consider the killing of a buck a great achievement and certainly a verry useful one. After finishing our repast the meat of the Deer was cut and dried over the fire.

July 1st 25 Miles North along the shore of the Lake. Nothing material occurred.

2nd 20 Miles North East Made our way to the Cache.  But Just before arriving there I saw some indians on the opposite side of a creek.  It was hardly worth while as I thought, to be any wise careful, so I went directly to them and found as near as I could judge by what I knew of the language to be a band of the Snakes.  I learned from them that the Whites, as they term our parties, were all assembled at the little Lake, a distance of about 25 Miles.  There was in the this camp about 200 Lodges of indians and as they were on their way to the rendevous I encamped with them.

3d I hired a horse and a guide and at three O Clock arrived at the rendezvous.  My arrival caused a considerable bustle in camp, for myself and party had been given up as lost.  A small Cannon brought up from St. Louis was loaded and fired for a salute.