Зображення сторінки


that eight balls had passed through him in different directions.

(From the same.)


Towards evening the men in the hindmost canoes discovered a large brown bear lying in the

(From the same.) open grounds, about three hundred paces from the river: six of On the north we passed a prethem, all good hunters, imme- cipice about one hundred and diately went to attack him, and twenty feet high, under which concealing themselves by a small lay scattered the fragments of at eminence came unperceived with least one hundred carcasses of in forty paces of him: four of buffaloes, although the water the hunters now fired, and each which had washed away the lower lodged a ball in his body, two of part of the hill must have carried them directly through the lungs : off many of the dead. These bufthe furious animal sprang up and faloes had been chased down the * ran openmouthed upon thiem ; as precipice in a way very common he came near, the two hunters on the Missouri, and by which who had reserved their fire gave vast herds are destroyed in a mohim two wounds, one of which ment. The mode of hunting is breaking his shoulder, retarded to select one of the most active his motion for a moment; but and fieet young men, who is disbefore they could reload he was guiseıl by a buffaloe skin round so near that they were obliged his body : the skin of the head to run to the river, and before with the cars and horns fastened they reached it he had almost on his own head in such a way as overtaken them: two jumped into to deceive the buffaloe: thus the canoe ; the other four sepa- dressed, he fixes himself at a conrated, and concealing themselves venient distance between a herd in the willows, fired as fast as of buffaloes and any of the river each could reload: they struck precipices, which sometimes exhim several times, but instead of tend for several miles. His comweakening the monster each shot panions in the meantime get in seemed only to direct him towards the rear and side of the herd, and the hunter, till at last he pursued at a given signal show themselves, two of them so closely, that they and advance towards the buffaloes : threw aside their guns and pouches, they instantly take the alarm, and and jumped down a perpendicular finding the hunters beside them, bank of twenty feet into the river; they run towards the disguised the bear sprang after them, and Indian or decoy, who leads them was within a few feet of the hind- on at full speed towards the river, most, when one of the hunters when suddenly securing himself on shore shot him in the head in some crevice of the cliff which and finally killed him : they drag- he had previously fixed on, the ged him to the shore, and found herd is left on the brink of the

precipice :


precipice: it is then in vain for difficult of navigation nor is there the foremost to retreat or even to much variation in its appearance otop; they are pressed on by the till the mouth of the Platte. That hindmost rank, who seeing no powerful river throws out vast danger but from the hunters, quantities of coarse sand which goad on those before them till the contribute to give a new face to whole are precipitated and the the Missouri, which is now much shore is strewed with their dead more impeded by islands. The bodies. Sometimes in this peri- sand, as it is drifted down, adlous seduction the Indian is him- heres in time to some of the proself either trodden under foot by jecting points from the shore, the rapid movements of the buffa- and forms a barrier to the mud, loe, or missing his footing in the which at length fills to the same cliff is urged down the precipice height with the sandbar itself:. by the falling herd.

as soon as it has acquired a consistency, the willow grows there the first year, and by its roots assists the solidity of the whole:

as the mud and sand accumulate (From the same.)

the cottonwood tree next appears ;

till the gradual excretion of soils We have now reached the ex- raises the surface of the point treme navigable point of the Mis- above the highest freshets. Thus souri, which our observation stopped in its course the water places in latitude 43° 30'43" seeks a passage elsewhere, and north. It is difficult to comprise as the soil on each side is light in any general description the and yielding, what was only a characteristics of a river so ex- peninsula, becomes gradually an tensive, and fed by 80 many island, and the river indemnifies streams which have their sources itself for the usurpation by enin a great variety of soils and croaching on the adjacent shore. climates. But the Missouri is In this way the Missouri like the still sufficiently powerful to give Mississippi is constantly cutting to all its waters something of a off the projections of the shore, common character, which is of and leaving its ancient channel

, course decided by the nature of which is then marked by the mud the country through which it it has deposited and a few stagpasses. The bed of the river is

nant ponds. chiefly composed of a blue mud, from which the water itself derives a deep tinge. From its Description of the objects of Najunction here to the place near tural History observed in Lexis which it leaves the mountains, its and Clarke's Erpedition. course is embarrassed by rapids and rocks which the hills on each side have thrown into its channel. From that place, its current, with The vegetable productions of the exception of the Salle is not the country, which furnish a



large proportion of the food of the either eaten simply or with train Indians, are the roots of a species oil : sometimes pounded fine and of thistle, the fern, the rush, the mixed with cold water, until it is liquorice, and a small cylindric reduced to the consistence of saroot, resembling in flavour and gamity, or Indian mush, which consistency the sweet potatoe. last method is the most agreeable

1st. The thistle, called by the to our palates. natives shanatanque, is a plant 2. Three species of fern grow which grows in a deep, rich, dry in this neighbourhood, but the loam, with a considerable mixture root of only one is eaten. It is of sand. The stem is simple, very abundant in those parts of ascending, cylindric, and hispid, the open lands and prairies which and rising to the height of three have a deep, loose, rich, black or four feet. The cauline life, loam, without any sand. There, which, as well as the stem of the it attains the height of four or last season, is dead, is simple, five feet, and is a beautiful plant crenate, and oblong; rather more with a fine green colour in sumobtuse at its apex than at its in- mer. The stem, which is smooth, sertion, which is decurrent, and cylindric, and slightly grooved on its position declining'; whilst the one side, rises erectly about half margin is armed with prickles, its height, when it divides into and its disk is hairy. The flower two branches, or rather long too is dry and mutilateil; but the footstalks, which put forth in pericarp seems much like that of pairs from one side only, and near the common thistle. The root- the edges of the groove, declining leaves, which still possess their backwards from the grooved side. verdure, and are about half These footstalks are themselves grown,

a pale green grooved and cylindric, and as they colour. The root, however, is the gradually taper towards the extreonly part used. It is from nine mities, put forth others of a smaller to fifteen inches long, about the size, which are alternate, and have size of a man's thumb, perpen- forty or fifty alternate, pinnate, dicular, fusiform, and with froin horizontal, and sessile leaves: the two to four radicles. The rind is leaves are inultipartite for half of a brown colour, and somewhat the length of their footstalk, when rough. When first taken from they assume the tongue-like form the earth, it is white, and nearly altogether; being, moreover, reas crisp as a carrot, and in this volute, with the upper disk smooth, state is sometimes eaten without and the lower resembling cotton : any preparation. But after it is the top is annual, and therefore prepared by the same process used dead at present, but it produces for the pascheco quamash, which flour or fruit: the root itself is the most usual and the best. is perennial and grows horizonmethod, it becomes black, and tally: sometimes a little divergmuch improved in favour. Itsing, or obliquely descending, and taste is exactly that of sugar, and frequently dividing itself as it it is indeed the sweetest vegetable proceeds, and shooting up a numemployed by the Indians. After ber of stems. It lies about four being baked in the kiln, it is inches under the surface of the


are of


earth, in a cylindrical form, with is a perennial solid bulb, about few or no radicles, and varies an inch long, and of the thickfrom the size of a goose quill to ness of a man's thumb, of an that of a man's finger. The bark ovate form, depressed on one or is black, thin, brittle, and rather two of its sides, and covered with rough, and easily separates in a thin, smooth, black rind : the flakes from the part which is pulp is white, brittle, and easily eaten: the centre is divided into masticated. It is commonly roasttwo parts by a strong, flat, and ed, though sometimes eaten raw; white ligament, like a piece of but in both states is rather an inthin tape; on each side of which sipid root. is a white substance, resembling, 4. The liquorice of this counafter the root is roasted, both in try does not differ from that comappearance and flavour, the dough mon to the United States. It of wheat. It has, however, a here delights in a deep, loose, pungency which is disagreeable, sandy soil, and grows very large, but the natives eat it voraciously, and abundantly. It is prepared and it seems to be very nutritious. hy roasting in the embers, and

3. The rush is most commonly pounding it slightly with a small used by the Killamucks, and other stick, in order to separate the Indians on the seacoast, along strong ligament in the centre of the sands of which it grows in the the root, which is then thrown greatest abundance. From each away, and the rest chewed and root a single stem rises erectly to swallowed. In this way it has the height of three or four feet, an agreeable flavour, not unlike somewhat thicker than a large that of the sweet potatoe. The quill, hollow and jointed ; about root of the cattail, or cooper's twenty or thirty lung, lineal, stel- flag, is eaten by the Indians. late, or radiate and horizontal There is also, a species of small, leaves surround the stem at each dry, tuberous root, two inches joint, about half an inch above in length, and about the thickness which, its stem is sheathed like of the finger. They are eaten the sand rush. When green, it raw, are crisp, milky, and of an resembles that plant also in ap- - agreeable flavour. pearance, as well as in having a 5. Beside the small cylindric rough stem. It is not branching; root mentioned above, is another nor does it bear, as far as we can of the same form and appearance, discover, either flower or seed. which is usually boiled and eaten At the bottom of this stem, which with train oil. Its taste, howis annual, is a sinall, strong ra. ever, is disagreeably bitter. But dicie, about an inch long, de- the most valuable of all the In. scending perpendicularly to the dian roots, is root, while just above the junction 6. The wappatoo, or bulb of of the radicle with the stem, the the common sagittafolia, or comlatter is surrounded in the form mon arrowhead. It does not of a wheel with six or nine small grow in this neighbourhood, but radicles, descending obliquely: is in great abundance in the the root attached to this radicle marshy grounds of that beautiful

valley, valley, which extends from near reddish brown colour, while the Quicksand river for seventy miles younger branches are red where westward, and is a principal arti- exposed to the sun, and green cle of trade between the inhabi- elsewhere. The leaf is three tants of that valley and those of fourths of an inch in length, and the sea coast.

two and a half in breadth of an The shrub rises to the height oval form ; the upper disk of a of four or five feet; the stem glossy deep green, the under of a simple and much branched. The pale green; the fruit is a deep bark is of a reddish dark brown; purple berry, about the size of a the main stem somewhat rough, common black cherry, oval and while that of the bough is smooth; rather bluntly pointed ; the perithe leaf is about one tenth of an carp is divided into five acute aninch long, obtuse at the apex, gular points, and envelops a soft and acute and angular at the in- pulp, containing a great number sertion of the pedicle. The leaf of small brown seeds. is three fourths of an inch in 2. The solme is a small, pale, length, and three eighths in red berry, the production of 2 width, smooth, and of a paler plant, resembling in size and green than evergreens generally shape that which produces the are. The fruit is a sinall deep fruit, called in the United States, purple berry, and of a pleasant Solomon's sealberry. The berry flavour; the natives eat the berry is attached to the stem in the when ripe, but seldom collect sane manner. It is of a globular such quantities as to dry for win- form ; containing a soft pulp, ter use.

which envelops four seeds about

the size of the seed of the common FRUITS.

small grape. It grows amongst The native fruits and berries in the woodland moss, and is, to all use among the Indians, are what appearance, an annual plant. they call the shallun ; the solme; 3. The cranberry is of the low the cranberry; a berry like the and viny kind, and grows in the black baw; the scarlet berry of marshes or bogs of this neighthe plant called sacacommis; a bourhood : it is precisely the same purple berry, like the huckle- as the cranberry of the United berry.

States. 1. The shallun is an evergreen

4. The fruit, which, though plant, abounding in this neigh- rather larger, resembles in shape bourbood, and its leaves are the the black haw, is a light brown favourite food of the elk. It is a berry, the fruit of a tree about thick growth, cylindrically rising the size, shape, and appearance to the height of three, and some- in every respect, of that of the times five feet, and varying from United States, called the wild the size of a goose quill, to that crab-apple. The leaf is also preof a man's thumb. The stem is cisely the same; as also the bark simple, branching, reclining, and in texture and colour. The berpartially fluxuose, with a bark ries grow in clumps at the end of which, on the elder part, is of a the small branches; each berry


« НазадПродовжити »