KanColl: The Kansas Historical Quarterlies

Isaac McCoy's Second Exploring Trip in 1828

by edited by John Francis McDermott

August, 1945(Vol. 13 No. 7), pages 400 to 462.
Transcribed by lhn;
digitized with permission of the Kansas State Historical Society.

     ISAAC McCOY in 1828 made two exploring tripsinto the Indian country. On the first of these, accompanied by an interpreter, hetook a party of Pottawatomie and Ottawa Indians to inspect lands west of theMissouri frontier. He left Saint Louis on August 21 and returned October 7. Ofthe second expedition, which left Saint Louis later in October under the commandof Capt. G. H. Kennerly, McCoy was treasurer. This time Chickasaw, Choctaw, andCreek delegations were taken west to the Neosho river and then south to FortGibson and the mouth of the Canadian river. McCoy reached Saint Louis the secondtime on December 24 and the next day started for Washington. Working up hisaccounts while traveling, he arrived in the capital on January 27, 1829, and twodays later addressed to P. B. Porter, Secretary of War, a lengthy reportdescribing his activities, the nature of the country explored, and the value ofthe lands to be assigned to the Indians. The section of McCoy's journal recordingthe first of these expeditions has been published. [1] The documents below areconcerned with the second. They have been arranged as follows: I, entries fromMcCoy's journal; II, McCoy's report; III, the reports of Kennerly, Hood, andBell. A few pertinent letters appear in footnotes.


Oct. 13.

I returned to St. Louis, and found the Southern Indians, so long looked for. Theyarrived yesterday, Oct. 12. [3]

Oct. 14.

Wherever we find Indians we find a pack of unprincipled whitemen gaping uponthem to devour them. We had good reason to believe that such had been among thesesouthern Indians and had occasioned their vexatious delays. It was hoped howeverthat in coming here they would leave such behind them. In this we aredisappointed. Duncan & Haley, [4] the former appointed to bring on theChickasaws and the latter the Choctaws, appear very destitute of any thing noble.They had on their arrival



taken lodgings with their Indians at the house where I put up. and the secondmeal they ate began to find fault so foolishly that they and the land lordquarrelled, and they by consent of both parties had left and returned and takenlodgings on board the Steam Boat again.

I soon learnt that there had not been agreement among them on the road. Theybothhad said before and after their arrival that unless they could have the handlingof some money they wo'd go back home. They sent for me, pretended they did notcare about money themselves, but said the Indians were dissatisfied. I went tosee their Indians, told them the nature of the case and they appeared satisfied.Some hours afterwards, Duncan brot me a letter sig[ned] by four of the Indiansrequesting me to place in the hands of Duncan $1000. Duncan hurried me for ananswer. I replied I could not answer until I further arranged our monied matters.I endeavored with Genl Clark and Cap. Kennerly [5] to devise some method ofevading a direct denial. I determined not to advance the money. I becamedisgusted with the conduct of the men. We had no doubt that the Indians wereprompted to the demand by the white men. All our party Indians & whites dinedat Genl Clark's Wednesday I wrote them a letter, previous to sending it to themOct. 15. showed to the white men, and Genl Clark & Cap. Kennerly all concurrdwith me. I hoped I had the men entangled, I made them to say they were satisfied,and they would explain it to the Indians. I offered them $250. and more whenevertheir necessities required. But Duncan was too mean to be relied on. The Indianssent for me & said nothing would satisfy but for me to give Duncan $500. ThisI determined not to do, knowing that it was virtually the demand of Duncan andnot of the Indians. But Genl. Clarke at length advised me to give them the money,and upon his advice I did so.

Oct. 16.

Busy in preparing for our tour.

Oct. 17.

Chandonois, [6] my interpreter started for home near Carey -well rewarded forhis time. Near night Duncan, with the Chickesaws started Friday


Oct. 18.

Haley with the Choctaws, and Blake [7] with the Creeks set off from St. Louis. Irode out to Browns to adjust my baggage affairs. [8]

Oct. 19.

I returned to St. Louis.

Monday and

Preparing to leave-busy with our accounts.

Oct. 22.

All the company having left, at 12 oclock Cap. Kennerly & myself set off in aDearbourn waggon, drawn by two horses and driven by Cap. Kennerly's black man. Wereached St. Charles on the north side of Missouri. Before leaving St. Louis thewhole of the $10,000 for which I had been authorized to draw was more thanexhausted. Genl. Clark, agreably to the regulations of the Sec. War, gave me aDraft for $2,300. more.

It may be supposed that having left my family the 2d July last with the hopeof returning to them about this time, I feel not a little anxiety on theiraccount---instead of returning to them, I am just now setting out on another tourin the woods. But submission becomes such a creature as I.

Oct. 23.

Travelled 36 miles to Taylors, [9] having dined at Mrs Bai[MS. illegible]

Oct. 24.

At 11 oclock we came up with Dr Todson [10] who had


stopped with Harper Lovett the Creek interpreter, who had become too sick totravel and had been left day before yesterday. He had had the measles, and theexposure of travelling & some imprudencies, had rendered him very ill. Wefound him in a sad ho[MS. illegible] and under the prescriptions of a wretchedDoctor.

We paid their enormous bills, put him in our carriage, and rode his horse, andconveyed him 7 miles. [11] Cap. Kennerly took the stage and proceeded. The Doctorand I remained with the sick man. He had been very anxious to accompany us. Buthe now declared himself unable to proceed. The Doctor and I concurring in thisopinion. We agreed with a Mr. Isaac Vanbibber [12] to take care of him as thoughhe had been my own son, and should he sufficiently recover, to send him in thestage to care of Genl. Clark St. Louis.

At same time I wrote to Genl. Clark informing of all done, and requesting himto pay charges, & send him on to the Creek nation, &c.

Gave commendatory letter to Lovett, instructions to family, and left him. Itwas dark when we reached lodgings at McMurtry's. [13] I much regret the necessityof leaving this young man behind, but it was unavoidable, I greatly doubt hisrecovery. [14]

Oct. 25.

At 11 took we [sic] Breakfasted at Harrisons, and at night overtook some of ourcompany that had been ahead.


Oct. 26.

Cannot rest, being obliged to move with the company Reached Franklin at night,where we found the whole of our company.

Oct. 27.

Last night I was attacked with bowel complaint, which threatened a CholeraMorbus. I took medicine before day, and thro mercy the disease was checked. TheChoctaws had partly determined to break off from the company and go direct totheir relations on Arkansaw, and Haley who accompanies them, it seems was goingwith them. He ought to have given information of the fact, this he neglected todo. The Indians spoke of it themselves. They were at length prevailed on toabandon the scheme, and all have consented to keep together, and have agreed toshorten the tour as first marked out north & west. In consequence of theseparleys and other strange things none but the two packhorse men of our messstarted today.

Oct. 28.

All except the two topographists, surgeon & myself proceeded. Cap. Kennerlywent with them on horseback, in order to keep them in motion.
We can soon overtake them.

I have been busy today writing-chiefly to members of Congress, on the subjectof the expedition.

Oct. 29.

I left Franklin with a few others. Most of our company being ahead of us. CrossedMissouri & slept at Smith's. [15]

Oct. 30.

Dined at Davis'. Rode 40 miles & slept at Hill's.

Oct. 31.

By sixteen miles ride we overtook the company that had been before. Slept atRennicks. [16]

Nov. 1.

Reached the village of Independence. [17]

Nov. 2.

The company generally proceeded. [18] I remained to see to a waggon of flour& bacon which had been engaged to


go on for us to the line of the state. I kept with me three of the Chickasaws& one of the Choctaws that I might enjoy a favourable opportunity ofconversation with them. I had also, for similar reason taken Colbert [19] intothe carriage with me for one or two days.

Nov. 3.

The wagon arrived with flour but no bacon. I sent a man to seek for some. Weproceeded & overtook the company encamped on the line of thestate, near the Shawanoes.


Hon. Peter B. Porter
Secty. of War Sir
In conformity with my Commission to attend an exploring party of Indians west ofthe Mississippi, authorized by act of Congress passed March, 1828, I proceeded tothe performance of the duties assigned me. How far I have succeeded in theiraccomplishment must be for you to decide on examination of the accompanyingdocuments.
Document, No. 1. Exhibits in detail the disbursement of the funds confided to mytrust., Documents Nos. 2 & 3 furnishes vouchers. Document No. 4 containsexplanations. Document No. 5 is a map of the country we explored, and extendingwest to the Rocky mountains, and north beyond what may probably be the limits ofIndian Territory. It also exhibits the claims of the several tribes


now in that country, and the amount of unappropriated lands. Document No. 6.Furnishes a brief history of the expedition a description of the country, and myviews relative to the settlement of the Indian tribes therein-and the subjectsconnected therewith which claim the immediate attention of our government.[21]
A history of the tour was to some extent, necessary for the exhibiting clearly ofthe propriety of some items of expenditure. If in giving this, or if in myremarks, or in the expression of my views relative to measures to be pursued, Ihave transcended, strictly speaking, the limits of duties as required by mycommission, I beg you will attribute it to no motive less worthy than that of adesire to contribute to the information of my government on a subject in which Ifeel the deepest interest.

With my great respect Sir,
your most Obdet Servt
Isaac McCoy

Washington City
Jan. 29, 1829.
Hon. Peter B. Porter
Secretary of War

I have the honour herewith to submit to you my Report of expenditures, &c.ofthe Indian exploring expedition west of the Mississippi authorized by act ofCongress passed March 1828.

It so happened, (the causes for which are explained in Document No. 6) thatmostof the costs of conducting the northern Indians occurred seperately from those inrelation to the southern. The former were six in number including theinterpreter, who was part Potawatomie. The distance they travelled was aboutequal to the average distance travelled by the southern Indians, and on accountof the delay of the latter, the Potawatomies and Ottawas were longer from theirhomes than was requisite for those of the south. Expenditures on account of theformer occurred under my own control. They are distinctly stated in theaccounts.

I was instructed to report myself to Genl. William Clark and in-


formed that from him the party would receive "the necessary detailedinstructionsfor the government of their route and movements." [22] The duties of myappointment not having been particularly pointed out in my instructions, Icheerfully acquiesced in the arrangements of Genl. Clark that Cap. Kennerly, whomhe had appointed leader of the party, should control all expendituressubsequently to those occasioned by the northern Indians. Those expenditures arealso distinctly stated in the account My business was to pay debts as theyoccurred, or to purchase by order of Cap. Kennerly. Hence I am accountable onlyfor the disbursement of those funds. [23]

The out-fit for the expedition, amounting on one bill to $7,695.47, embracingalso sundry smaller accounts, was furnished under directions of Genl. Clark andapproved by him, the amount for which was handed me by Cap. KennerlyThe season was so far advanced before we left St. Louis that it was desireable toleave the state as soon as possible. The Chickasaw delegation was started first,and secondly, as they could be made ready, the Choctaws, and Creeks. Fundstherefore were placed in the hands of the several leaders of the parties todefray


their expenses thro. the white settlements. Cap. Kennerly and myself overtookthem when a little more than half way through the state, after which time I paidmuch of the expense of the whole company. Those advances being greater than thenature of the cases would appear to require, merit an explanation.
Before leaving St. Louis the Chickasaws, through Mr Duncan their conductor, askedfor $1000. to be placed in the hands of Mr Duncan to be applied to their use onthe tour, at his and their discretion. This sum was in addition to $100. I hadpreviously advanced to them, and $600. they had received of Mr Smith their agent.No portion of this sum was necessary for outfit-every needful equipment for manand horse having been furnished as above stated. I declined advancing the moneyuntil Genl. Clark, in order to prevent a more perplexing occurrence, advised meto comply. On compliance with the wishes of the Chickasaws, the Choctawsfollowed with a similar, though less ungenerous and unnecessary demand.
On parting with the delegations subsequently, additional advances were made tosundry gentlemen to enable them to return to their places. The account shows theamount unaccounted for by them severally, and it is expected that each willreport his account without delay. The remarks accompanying the account shows whatdisposition has been made of the publick property.

Most respectfully,
Your Obt. servt Isaac McCoy

Hon. Peter B. Porter
Secretary of War


     It is in obedience to instructions connectedwith my appointment to accompany an exploring party of Indians west of theMississippi, agreeably to act of Congress passed March 1828, that I ask leaverespectfully to submit the following report. [24]
     That portion of my duties which related to thedisbursement of


the appropriation of Congress for purposes of the expedition, is reported onin documents accompanying this.
     At Carey, near Lake Michigan on the 30th June last,I had the honor to receive from the Dept. instructions to proceed with allpossible expedition, to St. Louis and to take with me three Potawatomies & aninterpreter. There were at that time in waiting three Ottawas anxious toaccompany me on that expedition, and, as the interests of those tribes, and theirrelation to our country and settlements, were, to a great extent, identified asthose of one tribe, I conceived it to be right & within the spirit of myinstructions to take them, together with two Potawatomies, and an interpreter,who also was part Indian. [25]
     We left Carey, 7in number, with eight horses, July 2d and reached St. Louis the 16th at whichplace Dr Todson, surgeon had arrived a few days previously. On the 21st July aman was sent from St. Louis to ascertain when the southern Indians would arrive.Aug. 13. Four Creeks conducted by Mr. Blake arrived at St. Louis. On the 16th themessenger to the southern Indians returned, with a written communication from aprincipal Chief of the Chickasaws, informing that, for reasons therein assigned,they had determined to postpone the tour until next March. The Choctaws wereexpected of course to imitate their example. As the arrangements for the tour,which were already considerably advanced, would sustain damage by so long adelay, it was desireable to complete the excursion the present season, theexpedition having been ordered chiefly for -the benefit of the Chickasaws,another messenger was sent to them, who left St. Louis the 18Aug.
     The Potawatomies & Ottawas had not expected tobe so long absent from theirplaces as would be necessary to await the issue of these arrangements, nor was itdesireable that they should. I therefore obtained permission, in lieu of theexpense and vexation of lying idle with a company of Indians, at St. Louis,during the absence of the messenger, to make the tour with the Potawatomies &Ottawas. This plan being the most economical, and the only one likely to producea favourable result in relation to those Indians, or to prevent an unfavourableone, we doubted not that it would receive the approbation of our government.
     With our six Indians and two hired hands, I leftSt. Louis Aug. 19.


Having with us 12 horses. We travelled on the south side of Missouri,inclining to south of West, and passed out of the state where its western linecrosses Osage river. Near that place we took in a half-breed Osage as aninterpreter to Osages and Kanzas. [26] The Osages at the village we passed herewere altogether friendly.
On leaving the state of Missouri we proceeded westwardly up the Osage river,generally on the north side. Passing the sources of Osage we Bore southwestacross the upper branches of Neosho until we intersected the main stream at apoint eighty miles south & one hundred and twenty seven west of the mouth ofKanzas river, and about 25 miles southeast of the road leading from the uppersettlements on Missouri to Santa Fe. We then bore northwest until we reached theroad which was at a point about sixty miles from Arkansas river, and 140 due westof the state of Missouri. These estimates are made according to measurement onthe map, and not ac cording to distances travelled, survey of the road, &c.Having spent five days on the waters of Neosho we turned to the eastward, andtravelled along, or near to the Santa Fe road, until we reached a point due southof the upper Kanza village. We then bore north to the village, which is on thesouth bank of Kanza river, 125 miles on a direct line west of the State ofMissouri.
After leaving the Osage village on the river of the same name, we had seenseveral trails of companies of Indians, some of which had occasioned uneasinessto our Osage interpreter, who supposed they might have been made by war partiesof their enemies. But the one which deserved most attention, I found, on closeexamination had been made by a hunting party and therefore supposed them to havebeen Kanzas or Osages. On the 18th September we fell in with a Kanza hunter andon the evening of the same day reached his vil lage. Coming in sight of twohouses about two miles from the main village the inhabitants became alarmed. Someof the women & children fled to the woods, while a man almost wholly divestedof clothing, with his implements of war, came in great haste to a grove which wewere entering. I supposed his object was to ascertain who we were. But I soondiscovered that it was to secure a couple of horses which were grazing in thewood, and of which we were within 100 paces when he reached them. I sent ourinterpreter to speak to him, who at once allayed his fears, so that he approachedcheerfully and took us by the hand, being in a profuse perspiration from His racefor the protection of his horses. He conducted us to water at which


     I halted, and sent him forward to inform themain village that I would presently be with them for the purpose of smoking. Iwas much gratified to hear from him that 16 Pawnees were at the village incounsel with the Kanza. Greatly to my disappointment, however when I came intothe assembly of the Kanzas, I ascertained that all the Pawnees except three hadhastily left on our approach. These three who, I suppose, had been left toascertain the object of our visit were in haste to be gone and could only bedetained long enough for me to give them a brief talk, and a liberal present oftobacco, to which they replied in the usual complimentary way. Our interview withthe Kanzas was also indicative of much friendly feeling.
I had been instructed to cross the Kanza river and to return on the north side.But the Indians informed me that there was not a canoe or other craft on theriver. My time was so far consumed that I deemed it unadvisable to incur thedelay that would be occasioned by crossing on rafts. I therefore proceededeastwardly near to the southern limits of the Kanzas' lands, and came down to theShawanoe villages recently settled near the mouth of Kanzas river on theMissouri. Here our Indians were again received with much friend ship. I had thesatisfaction to see that these Shawanoes were erecting neat hewed log cabins, andin other respects preparing for their future comfort. Our Indians remained withthem the greater part of two days, and were by them encouraged to settle in thecountry and even invited to settle near them.
     We had found Elk, Deer & Bear plenty, and hadseen a few Antelopes. Our Indians were delighted with the abundance of game, butregretted that, contrary to our former expectation, we had not fallenin with Buffalos. Our Osage interpreter supposed that we had been within a fewmiles of Buffalos, but at the time said nothing lest, as he afterwards declared,we should be induced to go farther west. He was exceedingly afraid of falling inwith Pawnee war parties. We afterwards ascertained that we had been within 75miles of the place where the last attack of the Pawnees was made on the firstparty defeated on the Santa Fe road, which happened in September while we were inthat country.

     I was my own pilot, and varied our course intravelling as appearances indicated would best enable us to become acquaintedwith the fitness of the country for habitation. There is great similarity in theappearance of all parts of it-that we explored. It is generally a high rollingcountry, exhibiting a healthy appearance. Stone is sufficiently plenty for use,and on Osage and Neosho, it is almost uni-


versally limestone. The soil on those rivers, which is exceedingly fertile,possesses the mellowness peculiar to limestone lands. Most of the creeks andsmaller water courses pass over limestone, and along the larger streams aresometimes seen steep and high cliffs of limestone rocks. The Hill sides arefrequently washed until the stone is quite uncovered, in those places it isgenerally thin flag stone. Bottom land is in width somewhat proportioned to thesize of the stream passing thro. it. That of the Osage 40 miles west of the stateof Missouri is about a mile in width. In addition to this we usually find on oneor both sides of the water courses, and proportioned somewhat to their size, agentle ascent of land, extending in the case above mentioned of Osage from threeto five miles back, and terminating at the base of hills which may rise 100, or150 feet, their sides sometimes abrupt, but oftener more gentle. There are seenmany hills detached from their kindred, conical, oblong, and of many a differentshape, so regular in their structure that the ob server can scarcely forbidconviction that they are artificial. These isolated hills are little else thanheaps of limestone.
     Ascending above the stony sides of hills of moresocial character, land gently rolling spreads out with a delightful countenance.Not a stone to annoy the plowman would be found on a tract of 500 acres, nor asingle break abrupt beyond convenience, and yet the country not flat. Elevationsof similar character often occur a second or third time as we pass back from acreek, until we reach the summit between the neighbouring streams.
On the Kanzas and its waters, stone is equally plenty, and is in the same wayhappily placed for convenience without annoyance to man. But it is mostlysand-stone. For two days in the neighbourhood of the upper Kanzas villages I sawscarcely any except sand stone. As we came lower down the river we saw somelimestone as well as sand. On Kanzas the soil of course corresponds with thequality of the stone. It is somewhat sandy, not so black as the limestonelands of Neosho and Osage, & in many instances less fertile. The face of thecountry is the same with that we have been describing, except that, as might beexpected within six or ten miles of the river the country is more broken, thehills along the rivulets higher, and more abrupt and rocky.
     This country which is generally prairie, differsgreatly from most prairie lands in Ohio, Indiana & Illinois. In thosecountries prairie lands are usually too flat with too little stone, oftenaccompanied with quagmires & ponds, and consequently unfavourable tohealth.


     Here it is quite the reverse, scarcely aquagmire is to be found. The season for two or three months has been remarkablydry, yet we found no scarcity of water. Water courses of suitable size for millsand other water works, are numerous. But, as it happens generally in the state ofMissouri, most of these streams so far fail in the dry seasons, that mills andother machines would stand still. In this respect the country resembles the stateof Missouri and the middle & upper counties of Kentucky.
     A degree of unhealthiness attends all large watercourses in the western country. This will be the case in the immediate vicinityof Kanzas river. Osage river is too small to produce any deleterious effectbeyond the distance of 30 or 35 miles west of Missouri state, and not even thatfar except on its very banks. With these exceptions which doubtless are asinconsiderable as those of similar character of any portion of the westerncountry, not a doubt can exist of the healthiness of those regions.
     Timber is too scarce. This is the greatest defectobserveable. Wood is chiefly confined to the water courses and the width of thestreak of timber is generally proportioned to the size of the stream passingthrough it. Some exceptions, however occur, where the timber stretches back on tothe uplands, or exists on the high lands at the sources of the streams. But woodis not so scarce as most travellers thro. those countries have represented it.The business of few, if any has hitherto required them to examine this subject.Being uninterested in the matter of timber beyond the amount necessary for fuelon their journey, they have avoided the water courses as much as possible becauseof the difficulty of travelling near them on account of the brush & the steepand rocky breaks, the prairies back from the water courses, affording morepleasant ways for the traveller than could be found, perhaps, in any othercountry destitute of roads. The uplands being almost universally prairie, thesight unobstructed passes to its utmost stretch over lands of similar height, sothat the country at a little distance around the observer appears to be morelevel than it really is. These upland prairies over which they look, rise higherthan the tops of the trees in the bottom lands, and often twice or three times ashigh, and conceal from the sight most of the timber, while the travellerascribing to the lands a mile or two from him, a degree of levelness which doesnot exist, supposes he sees almost every grove within the reach of his sight, andhence mistakes to the discredit of the country.


     This country, which is of peculiar character,often practices another deception upon the traveller. Streaks of timber seen at adistance and even at no great distance, amidst the vast prospect which theopenness of the country affords, appear much narrower than they really are.
     Wood immediately along the Kanzas river, and thatbranching off along the numerous smaller streams, is sufficient to sustaintolerably a dense population to the distance of 8 or 10 ten miles from the river.On Osage river, say 30 miles west of Missouri state the woodland is about a milewide. Woodlands of greater or less magnitude extend along every tributary watercourse, some of which are little inferior to the main river. Unlike the idea wedrew from many of our maps, water courses, from the largest to the smallest, onKanzas, Osage and the upper regions of Neosho, are numerous, and interlocking attheir sources, and proportionably numerous are the groves of woodland. There ismuch valuable timber, such as oak, ash, walnut, hickory, & mulberry. We alsofind Hackberry, Lint, &c. There is almost a total absence of the sugar tree.I regretted that my time was so limitted that I had none to spare in search ofcoal, but from appearances, and the fact that it exists abundantly a shortdistance east, and southeast of the tract of which I am speaking, I have no doubtthat this part of the country also possesses abundantly that valuable article.This fact goes far towards obviating difficulties which would arise from thescarcity of timber.
     I hardly need to say that the whole country isclothed with grass, this on the dry fertile uplands is short and more suitablefor grazing than for the scythe. Nearer to the water courses, & even to theirvery sources, it is well adapted to mowing. In Indiana, the eastern parts ofIllinois and Michigan Territory grass of suitable length for mowing is seldomfound except on wet land. In the country which we are describing scarcely any wetland exists, yet nature has provided therein well clothed meadows.
     I did not discover any of those ancient mounds andfortifications which are so abundant in some parts of the western country. On thesummits of high natural mounds, and hills, which were so situated as to attractthe notice of the traveller, I frequently found a heap of stones formed by thehands of man. In one or two instances their construction indicated the existenceof reasons for their formation similar to those which led to the formation ofartificial mounds mentioned above. Heaps of stone are often made


over the bodies of the deceased among the Indians of these regions. But theheaps of which we speak appear to be the result of amusement of the traveller,who invited to the elevation by its gaity or grandeur, leaves a monument of a fewstones thrown together to advertise a subsequent visitant that a human being hadbeen there. To this heap each successive visitant, invited thither by curiositycontributes a stone or two. It was amusing to see our Indians in good humour,contributing their portion to the increase of the social heap.
     On our return we arrived at St. Louis the 9thOctober, after an absence of forty nine days. [27] On the 10th I crossed theMississippi with our Indians, and travelled with them until the 12th at whichtime they proceeded being supplied with the means of returning comfortably totheir homes.
     It affords me great satisfaction to be able toassure you that those Potawatomies & Ottawas returned to their places wellsatisfied with the usage they had received from the servants of government, whilea still more favourable impression had been made on their minds by their friendlyinterviews with Osages, Kanzas, Pawnees, & Shawanoes, the three former ofwhom they had previously reckoned among their enemies. They were well pleasedwith the country they had seen. All agreed that it was well adapted to thepurposes of Indian settlement, and, excepting one expressed a strong desire tosettle therein. When about parting with them I was requested to become the bearerof a communication to the President on this subject. It is only because theprotracted length of the expedition has denied me the opportunity of passing bytheir place that I have not this communication now to submit. Measures howeverhave been adopted to afford them an opportunity of making known their wishes,which I expect will come to hand in a few days. So far as the subject hasprogressed the objects of the government in relation to those tribes, are fullyattained. I returned to St. Louis Oct. 13th and found that the Chickasaws andChoctaws had arrived the preceding day. On the 17th the Chickasaws moved off fromSt. Louis, on the 18th the Choctaws and Creeks followed. [28] Cap. Kennerly &myself, having been by our business, thrown into the rear, set out on the 22d.[29]
On the 24th we found Harper Lovett the Creek interpreter sick, and DoctorTodson


attending him. Before leaving St. Louis he had been attacked with measles fromwhich he had not sufficiently recovered to endure the journey. Cap. Kennerly tookthe stage and followed the company, while Dr. Todson and myself remained with thesick man. He was exceedingly anxious to make the tour & begged us not toleave him behind. We conveyed him in a carriage seven miles, when he became fullyconvinced as well as ourselves, that he was unable to proceed further. He diedfive days afterwards and was decently buried. [30]We overtook the foremost of our company on the 26th 180 miles from St. Louis. Thecompany proceeded on the 28th and reached [49] the western line of the state ofMissouri the 2d Nov. For the purpose of obtaining an interpreter we remained hereone week. In which time our Indians & the Shawanoes had several friendlytalks. While here, the Agent for Indian affairs at Fort Leavenworth [31]communicated to us information that 1500 Pawnees, it was reported, had gone on awar expedition, intending to watch the Santa Fe road or if unsuccessful there toproceed farther southeast. He warned us to be on our guard, and, should we comein contact with Pawnees apparently friendly, not to permit them to mingle with usin camp, or at any other time. We resumed our march on the 8th. Our company beingnow complete consisted of Cap. G. H. Kennerly, leader, Lieut. Hood Topographist,Mr. John Bell assistant topographist, and G. P. Todson surgeon. [32] To me hadbeen intrusted the monied matters. The Chickasaws Delegation consisted of 12Indians, and an interpreter, accompanied by three white men chosen by themselves,in all 16, with Mr. John B. Duncan Sub. Agent, as their leader. The Choctawdelegation was composed of six Indians, and lead by Mr. D. W. Haley. The Creekdelegation consisted of three, and was lead by Mr. Luther Blake. [33] We had oneinterpreter to Osages and Kanzas, seven hired men, and a black servant belonging[to] a Chickasaw Chief. [34] In all 42. We had with us upwardsof

sixty horses.


     We proceeded a little west of south, [35]crossed Osage river [36] about 20 miles west of the state of Missouri [37] andfell on to the Neosho about 14 miles farther west [38] We then proceeded downNeosho to the Osage Agency, [39] in the neighbourhood of the upper Osagevillages, about 33 miles west of the western limits of the state of Missouri, atwhich place we arrived the 17th November. [40] Here we re-


mained four days, and afforded Indians of our party and the Osages anopportunity to reciprocate expressions of friendship. [41] The Osages andChoctaws were once enemies. Within two years past pipes of peace had beenexchanged and each tribe considered peace restored. This having been done thro.the mediation of others, it was gratifying that a personal interview at this timeafforded an opportunity of confirming the peace. [42]

     From the Osage villages [43] we took the road tothe Creek agency on the Verdigris river, within four miles of its junction withthe Arkansaw. [44] Here and near Fort Gibson we remained five days. [45] Leavingthe Creek delegation with their countrymen on Verdigris [46] we again took up theline of march the 2d of December. [47] We crossed Arkansaw and continued ourcommon course, a little west of south, crossed the north fork of Canadian river,and six miles farther crossed the main Canadian, and encamped a mile above at themouth of the south fork. This was the most westwardly point that we made on thistour, which was about 48 miles west of the Territory of Arkansaw, and 260 milessouth of the mouth of Kanzas river, 255 from where we went out of the state ofMissouri. In coming to this point after leaving the state we travelled about asdirect, with slight exceptions, as is usual in making a journey of the same


length The first 40 miles was across the lands assigned the Shawanoes, andPiankeshaws, the next 48 miles was thro. unappropriated lands. Then 50 milesacross Osage lands, then 77 miles thro lands assigned the Creeks and Cherokees.Thence 40 miles thro. Cherokee lands, and at this point viz the mouth of thesouth fork of Canadian river, we entered the Choctaw lands.
     Here it was resolved to turn eastwardly towardsFort Smith with a view to the termination of the expedition. We left this placethe 5th Decr. travelled two days down the Canadian, and on the 7th Deer. weseparated. [48] The two southern delegations were expected at that instant toproceed to Fort Smith, but one of their company having killed a Buffaloe thepreceding day, they concluded to remain a day or two and hunt that animal.Buffaloe on Arkansaw approach within 30 miles or less of the settlements, invitedby the cane. Farther north they range more remotely, & on Missouri riverthere is none within many hundred miles. They were furnished with the means ofreturning comfortably to their places to which they were nearer than when at St.Louis, having travelled after leaving the state of Missouri a distance nearlyequal to that travelled west of the same line in September. We had been only twodays within the Choctaw lands. One of them who was a man of influence, expresseda desire to remain longer time, for the purpose of becoming acquainted with thatcountry, and solicited some assistance, which was granted.

     Cap. Kennerly Lieut. Hood, Mr. Bell, Dr. Todson,& myself made the best of our way back passed Fort Gibson, and reached 4s St.Louis the 24th Decr. The pack horses and men were a little in the rear and wouldarrive the 25th or 27th. It was the 10th December when on our return we passedthe Creek agency. There we again saw the Creek delegation. On that day they setoff for their homes. They had not explored much of their country, but hadcontented themselves with spending the time in the neighbourhood of theirrelations. The Creeks now in this country are chiefly or all of the McIntoshparty. The delegation was from the opposite party. This interview of the partieswas characterized by expressions of friendship from both, and an agreement thatall former grudges should be forgotten. The emigrants invited the others to cometo their country, and spoke greatly in its praise. This was seconded by a writtencommunication from Chilly McIn-


tosh to his countrymen in the south. The feelings with which the delegationset off for their places justify the hope of a favourable result. [50] In everyarrangement in relation to the removal of the Creeks, I would respectfullysuggest the propriety of placing out of sight as far as possible everything ofparty character.
     It had been desirable to pass out of the state ofMissouri on the north side of Missouri river, to cross that stream above themouth of Kansas, and generally to have borne farther to the west. But the Indianswere averse to this course. From the place where we passed out of the state ofMissouri to the crossing of Osage river, a distance of about 70 miles, we weretravelling thro. the country of which I have already given a description. Thenext 20 miles being still on the waters of Osage, was of similar character. 20miles farther which brought us to Neosho led us across a country becoming morelevel, with fewer water courses. This continued to be the case for the next 100miles. Limestone was less abundant and in many instances mingling with, andsometimes giving place to sand stone and flint. The prairies not so fertile asthose at the sources of the river. Nature here has not observed the sameregularity in decking the watercourses with wood as in the country farthernorthwest. Here timber is oftener seen on the hills, and the groves along streamsare less regular in their width, and more frequently detached. Timber alongNeosho river in the neighbourhood of the Osage villages may be from three hundredyards, to three miles in width. The next 40 miles which brings us to the mouthsof Neosho and Verdigris (only four or five miles apart) is better timbered morehilly, & has less limestone, generally sand-


stone, also some flint. The hills are more stony and poor, yet abundance ofgood prairie lies among them.
*     From the neighbourhood of the Creek Agency andFort Gibson, the whole distance that we travelled until we returned to that placeit may be said that the country is pretty well timbered. On the south of Canadianriver the general arrangement of woodlands and prairies is precisely the reverseof that of the Osage and Kanzas country. Here the hills, which are usually stonyand poor, are covered with wood, mostly post oak and black oak, of moderate size,and often brushy, while between the hills are beautiful vales of fertileprairies. Sand stone almost universally prevails on the south of Arkansas. In oneinstance for a few miles I discovered slate. The bottom lands of Arkansawappeared to be from three to five miles wide, well clothed with timber, and inmany places covered with cane ten or 12 feet high, and so dense that considerableresolution & effort are necessary to enable a man to force a passage thro.it. The bottom land of Canadian is one or two miles wide, similar to that ofArkansaw, the latter more subject to inundations. Verdigris, Neosho, ArkansawCanadian, North Fork, and South fork, all mingle their waters in the samevicinity. On this account this part of the country is more hilly than some otherswe have described.
     The country the whole route south of Osage river,like that on the north wears a healthy countenance, with such exceptions as wemade in our remarks on that, relative to lands contiguous to large water courses.As the country now under consideration in its southern parts, is remarkable forthe multiplicity of its large streams, a greater proportion of fevers and aguesmust be looked for among it [s] future inhabitants, than at the sources of Neosho& Osage. And the more so because the hills, commonly poor and stony, whichwill occasion settlements to be made more extensively along the rivers.
We saw coal on Neosho at the Osage Agency, farther south we crossed a creek whichran over a bed of coal. The south bank of Arkansaw, where we crossed it near FortGibson abounded with coal. From other specimens of less note, and the concurrenttestimony of all acquainted in the country there can be no doubt that coal existstherein in great abundance.
     The Cherokees own, on the east side of Neosho riverlead mines which promise to become very productive. I saw specimens of the orewhich was inferior to none in the western lead mines. They also


own valuable salt springs on Neosho, and farther south, some of which I saw,and one of which they were profitably working.
     The whole region appears to be well watered.Neosho, and the smaller streams we saw 30 miles east and lower down the Arkansaw,were transparent. But Kanzas, Virdigris, Arkansaw, north fork, Canadian &South fork, are all of muddy colour. South of Arkansaw we Saw no clear water inCreek or rivulet, except a few springs. Osage is tolerably clear though inSeptember last, we saw many places where the water was sluggish &discoloured. Kanzas river was at that time little less muddy than Missouri.Arkansaw and the North fork of Canadian, are rather less muddy-Virdigris stillless, and the south fork of Canadian river is of similar character. Canadianriver is more deeply stained, and is of a reddish yellow, almost as highlycoloured as if nature had intended its waters for a dye. Banks washed by waterdisclose strata of coloured earth. Hence it is easy to account for the appearanceof those waters. South of Arkansaw, & in the vicinity of Canadian riverespecially, the earth generally is tinged with a reddish purple.
     We forded the Arkansaw both going out andreturning, tho. the water was on my horses sides. About half the bed of the riveronly was at that time, covered with water, the other half sand beach. I measuredthe sand part at one place 270 yards-making the whole width of the river betweenits banks 540 yards. In the dry season of the year water is rather scarce forSteam boats of common burden. But this will nevertheless be found a valuableriver for navigation as far west as the country in other respects will admit ofsettlement.
     Kanzas river, where I examined it, appearedsomething narrower than Arkansaw, and was at that place deep. Its banks, and itsappearance in other respects greatly resembles the Missouri.
     Water of Canadian river, where we crossed it, wasabout 60 yards wide, of average depth 2 feet, with a gentle current. I measuredthe sand beach at this same place, 150 yards, making the river between its banks210 yards wide. Its low lands are chiefly sand.
     We crossed the North fork of Canadian at a rockyrapid, where in the distance of 50 yards is a fall of about three feet. Most ofthis descent is abrupt over sand rocks. The river here is deeper than I hadexpected to find it from the appearance of the deeper parts I had seen above. Itis about 150 yards wide. The water where we crossed immediately below theprincipal pitch was sometimes to our horses knees, with a strong current. At thattime


it sent down more water than the Canadian, tho. it is to be reckoned a riverof considerably less magnitude.
     The south fork empties into Canadian only a fewmiles above the entrance of the north fork. It is less than the latter, and doesnot extend a long distance west as most of our maps indicate. It comes from thesouth west, is short, and interlocks its sources with those of the Kiamisha,which runs of[f] southeastwardly and emp ties into Red river near Fort Towson.The country at the sources of these two streams, is mountainous, and offers tothe traveller few convenient passes across it.
     The Choctaws own all the country between Red river& Canadian river and west of the Territory of Arkansaw. The delegation hadseen so little of it, when we parted with them that it could not be expected theyshould be able to form any opinion respecting it. On the whole route they and theChickasaws were reserved in conversation on the subject of country, their removal&c. They were not wanting in expressions of friendship, but chose to saylittle on the objects of the expedition, tho. all had plainly enough expressedtheir dislike of the country we had seen previous to our arrival at Fort Gibson.The evening before I parted with the Chickasaws I informed them that I should begratified to hear from them on this subject. The next morning the followingcommunication, written by one of their party, and signed by them all, was handedme.

Canadian river, 7th Decr. 1828

To Mr. McCoy
Friend & Brother
     In reply to your requests we have to say to youthat from the situation of affairs at home, we are not able to give you anyaccount of the present tour. When we return home, and find our affairs settledwith the general government satisfactorily to us, we will then make our report toour great father the president of the U. States.
We are with great respect
Your friends and Brothers
X X X X X X [51] &c

     I think that when they left their homes they didnot expect to be pleased. It was unfortunate that there was a necessity forpressing on them to make the tour the present season. They were induced to feelthemselves on the occasion more independent, and to take


greater liberty in dictating the route, than was to the advantage of theexpedition. Nevertheless their conduct was at all times marked with civility anddecorum greatly to their credit as gentlemen, and such, I am confident as wouldnot suffer by comparison with american citizens on any similar expedition.They were utterly averse to going north of the state of Missouri, and withavidity seized upon every pretext for shortening the route. I am not prepared torecommend at this time a repetition of the expedition for the benefit of thesepeople, yet I am confident the present has been made under so many disadvantages,that it ought not to be considered a fair trial in the case. I would hererespectfully suggest that should another exploring expedition be ordered forsimilar purposes in relation to any of the tribes, the fewer the number ofpersons, so it be sufficient for their security and convenience in travelling,and the more simple and unostentatious, that every movement connected therewithcan be, the better. In confirmation of this idea I need only refer to theexpenditures incurred on the late expedition, in relation to the Potawatomies andOttawas, and which might have been less had they been less associated with thewhole, and to the favorable impression made on the minds of those Indians. These,remarks imply not the smallest censure of men. They relate only to measures,which, though the result of the best of motives, may be dictated too remotelyfrom the scene of action for the most honorable wisdom to secure them defects,and which the servants of government must obey even under a full conviction oftheir inutility.
     Those southern delegations were composed chiefly orentirely of agricultural men, and were no doubt, good judges of country in theregions where they have always resided. But every country has its peculiarfeatures, indicative of its fitness, or unfitness for the comfortable abode ofmen. Instances abound of the want of skill in emigrants from the eastern andsouthern states, in the selection of lands in the western country. On the watersof Osage, when travelling over prairie lands which (excepting timber) equalled insituation & fertility of soil, the excellent lands in the neighborhood ofLexington & Georgetown, Kentucky, they complained of its poorness. It seemednot easy to correct their errors. On one occasion after reasoning some time withfive persons who were riding with me, I alighted and excavated the earth thatthey might judge from the blackness, depth, and mellowness of the soil. Butaltho. reason could not furnish a reply to this kind of argument, yet I had notthe satisfaction to suppose that those rich prairies were esteemed much


better than sterile plains while lands of inferior quality were often remarkedas the richest in the country. There was nothing mysterious in this beyond whatoften happens in relation to those of our own citizens when required to form anopinion of lands in a country where they are ignorant of the characteristics ofits good and bad land. There is perhaps no subject agitated among men, apparentlyso obvious upon persons equally tenacious of truth which so widely differ.Liability to mistake in this respect becomes the greater where one whosepossessions have been found in a timbered country, is required to judge of whatmay be termed a prairie country. Pardon me for suggesting that in ordering allsimilar exploring expeditions in future this fact ought to be borne in mind. Theseason had so far advanced before we could leave St. Louis, added to the littleinclination of the Indians to make the tour before next spring, that I almostdespaired of a favourable issue of the expedition. My discouragements wereaugmented on passing out of the state of Missouri. That country in September hadbeen the most delightful to the eye, of any that I had ever seen. From thesplendid elevation, the unbounded prospect of high rolling prairies, clothed withgrass of Autumnal gray, spotted, and streaked with woodlands in cheerful green,describing the course of every stream, was beautiful beyond description. But nowthe woods were in winter dress. The grass of the prairies burnt, or burning, thedust rising from the recently burnt prairies, agitated by our horses' feet,exceedingly troublesome. The atmosphere so smoky that sight was limited to alittle sphere. The prairies black, and every thing apparently clad in mourning,the whole agravated by winds which sometimes blew incessantly in our faces for awhole day's journey. Autumn gives to a timbered country, especially if it befertile an air of pleasantness delightful to him who explores, for the purpose ofbecoming acquainted with it. Precisely the reverse is the case with a prairiecountry. In autumn the traveller does not feel the cold of winter, the wet ofspring, the annoyance of insects and the heat of summer. He travels on firm land,and finds food plentifully, nevertheless in no season of the year does a prairiecountry appear so little inviting to one who likes it, or so forbidding to onewho is inclined to dislike like, as in the fall about the time of the burningof
the grass on the prairies.     As might be expected our southern delegationsmanifested less inclination to settle in the more northern parts of the countryunder consideration than in the more southern. It therefore became the


more perplexing on the tour, that almost all the country of Arkansaw and itswaters had been previously assigned to other tribes so that there remained, in amanner, none vacant for the examination of the Chickasaws. The Choctaws own agreat deal of excellent country. The better parts are severed by the chain ofmountainous land mentioned above, at the sources of the south fork of Canadian,and the Kiamisha. A valuable tract lying east and west along Red river, andanother extending in the same direction along Arkansaw and Canadian. Very few ofthe tribe are located in that country, and these mostly on Red river. They couldspare country fully sufficient for the use of the Chickasaws on Arkansaw &Canadian rivers, north of the broken poor regions that divide the better parts oftheir country. They would still retain in the southern parts as much as would benecessary for them of excellent quality, while that given to the Chickasaws wouldperhaps not be inferiour. Such is the obvious excellence of that country that theChickasaws could not possibly plead its defects as an objection to their removal.The countries now owned by the Choctaws, Creeks and Cherokees, are sufficientlyextensive to accommodate the Chickasaws also-& even more. Those tribes areaccustomed to neighbourhood relations, & the climate is such as they haveever enjoyed. In these remarks I include the whole of those tribes, wherever theymay at present exist.
     I may not be so fortunate as to meet with many whoconcur with me in opinion relative to the country under consideration (I mean thewhole described in our remarks) yet I hesitate not to pronounce it in myestimation very good, and well adapted to the purposes of Indian settlement. Ithink I risk nothing in supposing that no state or territory in the unionembraces a tract of equal extent and fertility, so little broken by lands nottilable, with that lying south of Kanzas, & on Osage and the upper branchesof Neosho, the extent of which I have not yet been able to ascertain. Thiscountry also has its defects, the greatest of which is the scarcity of timber,but by a judicious division among the inhabitants of woodland and prairie therewill be found a sufficiency of the former, in connexion with coal, to answer thepurposes in question with tolerable convenience.
     The navigation of the Missouri river will always beattended with difficulty and hazard. Arkansaw & perhaps Red river will bebetter. But the privileges of navigation will nevertheless be very moderate.Should the territory prosper the time will come when this circumstance will befelt as a serious inconvenience. At present it is perhaps no disadvantage and maynot be for many years hence.


It is one of the local causes which will secure the Indians in the possessionof that country:
     The prevailing business of this country will be theraising of cattle, sheep, horses, and mules. This state of things will arise outof the fitness of the country for such purposes on account of the plentifulgrazing, the natural meadows for mowing, and the abundance of salt, and out ofthe paucity of navigable privileges. Livestock can be exported to market withoutnavigation. This fact also diminishes the difficulties which would otherwisearise out of the scarcity of timber. If the inhabitants should be inclined togrow grain extensively for market, the more fencing &c would be necessary. Asit is, the extent of fields will be proportioned to the immediate wants of theinhabitants, and an account of natural grazing & meadowlands, pastures &meadows on farms may be less.
     From actual observation, and information fromothers on which I can rely, I think I have formed a pretty correct opinion, sofar the data upon which it is predicated are correct, of the regions whichnature, and our western settlements, have described for the purposes [of]permanent Indian habitation. In fixing the boundaries of states and smallerdivisions of our country, nature is usually consulted. I shall adopt the samecourse, by your permission to express, respectfully my views respecting theproper limits to be allowed for Indian settlement.
     A strip of valuable country lies from Missouririver along the western line of Missouri state, to its North west corner, one 100miles, bounded on the south west by Missouri river. This tract is about 50 mileswide at its northern extremity, and comes to a point at its southern. A few Iowasand Sauks have recently been located there, but nature seems to have designedthat the Missouri, which from the line of the state bears greatly to the north aswe ascend, should be the line between the whites and the Indians. Farthernorthwest the river will doubtless form this division, and it would appear aninjudicious arrangement which should require us hereafter in the use of thatportion of the Missouri river, to pass thro. the Indian territories. Howeverexcellent must be this gore of land of which we are speaking, our first thoughtsfurnish many reasons for supposing that an Indian settlement, severed from itskindred by the navigation of Missouri, and lying along side of white settlements,would not flourish. [52]


     From where the western line of the state ofMissouri crosses the Missouri river, the general direction of the latter as weascend is northwest for the distance, on a direct line, of 260 miles. It thenturns to the west 100 miles. Then it again bears to north west, and north leavingthe smaller streams of Runningwater and Puncah rivers, to mark the westwardlydirection towards the Rocky moun tains. I hope, sir, that a glance at some of thelater maps will procure an apology for my supposing that Running water &Puncah rivers and the Missouri should form the northern boundary of the IndianTerritory, the latter river the north eastern. The state of Missouri &territory of Arkansaw, the eastern, Red river (which is here our southernboundary) the southern, and the uninhabitable regions stretching nearly north andsouth on this side of the rocky mountains, should form the western limits of theterritory.
     This tract would be six hundred miles long fromsouth to north. This distance we may believe there is habitable country of theaverage width from east to west of 200 miles, with some exception at its northoccasioned by the inclination of Missouri river to west on the line of 260 milesmentioned above. West beyond the distance of about 200 miles we may suppose thecountry to be uninhabitable in consequence of the absence of timber, and, asreports say, the poverty of the soil. This tract is supposed to be fully adequateto all the purposes which the case will require. It can hardly be thought toomuch when we consider that 340 miles of the six hundred, has already beenassigned to different tribes, notwithstanding the work is scarcely begun.
     It was an excellent design which led to theextinguishment of Indian title to all the country north of Red river as far thedividing lands between Kanzas river & the great river Platt (Kanza &Osage reservations excepted) But I beg leave to express less admiration ofcircumstance of giving to the tribes who now have claims there, more-a great dealmore than was requisite. These and subsequent remarks on the same subject, implynot the smallest censure of those officers of government who have made thoseassignments of lands. They had their instructions, or were guided by reasons wellunderstood by themselves and in many instances no doubt they were influenced bycircumstances not under their control. In the country under consideration landshave been assigned to the Choctaws, Cherokees, Creeks, Quapaws, Osages, Kanzas,Shawanoes, Piankeshaws, and Delawares. Farther north live the Ottoes, Pawnees,and Omahas. From Red river on the south, to the north-


ern boundaries of the Kanzas reservation, is a distanceof 395 miles on a direct line. All these lands have been given away except astrip along Osage and the upper branches of Neosho, which in its narrowest partat the east is about 40 miles wide, and in its broadest about 75, and a stripextending north and south between the line of Missouri & the Osagereservation, &c. 25 miles wide, and about 80 miles long.
     The assignments of these lands were not made, Isuppose, with a view to an Indian Territory, the right to which should besecured to them. The two following considerations contribute to this conclusion.1st. To give to every tribe proposed to be removed, with similar liberality,would be to spread them so widely that they would not come within the spirit ofthe design, and moreover room would not be found without taking in much of thecountry north of the state of Missouri. 2d. Government has not yet said that thatcountry should be given to them for a permanent home. The only treaty with any ofthose tribes, that I have noticed, which seems to involve the principle of asecure home to them under the guarantee of government, is that which wasconcluded with the Cherokees of Arkansaw, the 31st May last. In that treaty everyassurance that could be desired, is given to the Indians that the lands thereinassigned shall be theirs forever. But this is a matter relating to a single tribeonly. Great embarrassment was felt on the late expedition because almost all thelands we saw in what we will term the Indian country, had previously been givenaway.
It is a fact which need not be concealed that, if our Indian tribes are to beremoved to that country, some millions of acres must be re-purchased for theiruse, and there is too much ground to fear that such lands will be purchased withgreater difficulty than they were at former treaties.
     Facts already stated, together with some which willappear hereafter, induce me to beg leave respectly, further to suggest that asuperintendency of Indian settlement, with a view to all matters relatingthereto, cannot be too soon established within the contemplated Indian territory.The superintendency of Indian affairs at St. Louis should doubtless be sustained,business apart from the Indian territory would be fully sufficient to justify it.But this argues nothing against our proposal. In support of this opinion I offerthe following considerations. 1st. The business of the Indian Agents is limitedto their several spheres, for which, as is natural they undesignedly and withoutcrime contract partialities. The matter of In-


than settlement in the territory requires concert and harmony in theoperations of all the parts. The superintendency in St. Louis is 300 miles fromthe nearest point of the Indian territory, and consequently too remote to manageall to advantage.
     2d. In a country like this where in formingsettlements, the amount of woodlands,the number of the tribe &c. have to be consulted, a personal acquaintancewith these things is necessary to their judicious arrangement. Information onthese points obtained at a distance comes from those whose duty it is for eachmerely to speak of his own district without any one to report on them conjointlywho is personally acquainted with the whole, and alike interested in all thecircumstances of Indian settlement. It is in this way only that we may hope thata judicious apportionment of lands can be made.
     3d. The seven millions of acres of land ceded tothe Cherokees of Arkansaw lastwinter, runs over a valuable portion of lands previously granted to the Creeks.This mistake in the assignment of Indian lands owned for want of correctinformation of the geographical situation of the country. It is impossible fora just distribution of land to be made by a mere reference to our maps. To meit appears evident that the difficulty above mentioned originated in the absenceof a superintendency, extending with equal interest to all parts-to all tribes,and informed of all.
     4th. The superabundance of the several claims andthe clashing of claims, are notthe only defects of this character in the present system of operation. I supposethat the circumstance of giving to each tribe "an Out-let" so called, is entirelysuperfluous and calculated to lead to perplexing difficulties. By out-lets isunderstood, a slip of land extending from that more particularly stipulated inthe treaty as being designed for settlement, west into the uninhabitable regionsof the desert and the mountains. The Choctaw out-let is about 100 miles wide.The width of that of the Creeks is not yet settled on account of the clashing oftheir claims with those of the Cherokees. But that which belongs to both is about120 miles wide. The Osage Out-let is 50 miles, & that of the Kanzas 30.The object of these Out-lets is that each may have access to hunting lands in thewest. But why not make those uninhabitable regions a common hunting ground forall the several hunting parties will not be able to distinguish the particularslip of land allowed for hunting purposes to the tribe to which the partybelongs. And even if they could the hunter nevertheless will roam wherever thegame is to be found. If


metes and bounds be fixed to those hunting lands trespasses will inevitably befrequent, and may lead to unpleasant consequences.
     In the allowance of those out-lets there issometimes ceded away to the tribe agreat deal more valuable country than by the face of the treaty is intended. As,for instance in the Cherokee treaty mentioned above, there is in the first placegranted to them several millions of acres, and then in addition there is given tothem all the lands west of this 7,000,000 tract & south of the 36 degree ofN. Latitude. If we suppose the country of the Choctaws to be valuable from thedistance of 200 miles west of their eastern limits, they in that case claim ofgood country, 19,600 square miles, or 12,544,000 acres, and in addition to this,the whole region west as far as the boundaries of the U States' territoriesextend.
     5th. This superintendency for which we respectfullyplead, is [neces] sary inorder to the establishing of such a central point in the Territory as will giveto the inhabitants the idea of civil government, and in which all the parts willbecome united in one common bond of interest, for the preservation of peace andharmony.
     6th. The greatest defect in this country, (and I amsorry that it is of soserious a character) is the scarcity of timber. If fields be made in the timberedland, which most persons who have been accustomed to timbered countries areinclined to do, the Indians more especially because often unprepared with teamsfor breaking prairies, timber will Soon become too scarce to sustain thepopulation which the plan under consideration contemplates. I trust that I needoffer no apology for supposing that measures ought to be immediately adopted, formarking off to each settler, or class of settlers the amount of timbered landreally necessary for their use severally and no more. The timber generally is sohappily distributed in streaks and groves, that each farm may be allowed theamount of timber requisite, and then extend back into the prairie lands forquantity. The prairies being almost universally rich, and well situated forcultivation, afford uncommon facilities for the operation of such a method. Bypursueing this plan, wood after a few years will increase in quantity annually,in proportion as the grazing of stock, and the interests of the inhabitants shallcheck the annual burning of those prairies. These regulations, essential to thefuture prosperity of the territory, cannot be made without the existence of thesuperintendency of which I Speak. Let it be said that the country within such andSuch defined boundaries shall be given to the Indians for the purposes underconsideration-next establish such a course


of things as will render it possible to make a fair distribution of it amongitsinhabitants in view of their numbers and circumstances, and which will secure tothem the possibility of future prosperity.Please to indulge me in expressing an opinion on another [point] deeply affectingthe interests of this territory, and which I am confident claims the earliestattention of our government.
     The Osages are avowedly engaged in an unnecessarywar with Pawnees, Kamanches,and others who wander in the regions west of them. Several skirmishes occurredthe last summer and fall. Osage hunting parties are frequently attacked andsometimes the enemy approaches quite to their villages. A few months ago a houseerected for the Osage Chief Walking-Rain,- [53] at a considerable expense to theUnited States, was scarcely completed, and had not been occupied by the ownerwhen it was visited by a company of their enemies who spent the night in theirbuilding, the destruction of which had been entirely within their power. Theowner and his party are in constant fear of such incursions of their enemies.The Osages in return go on war expiditions against their foes. I saw twoprisoners among them recently taken from the Pawnees, and some scalps, andhorses. This state of warfare tends greatly to the neglect among the Osages, ofhunting and the employment of other means for their subsistence and comfort.The mischiefs of the Pawnees, & Kamanches, &c. affect others also besidethe Osages. I remarked to the Shawanoes that they had settled too near the lineof Missouri. I was answered, "they were aware of the inconvenience to be expectedfrom their proximity to white settlements, but they were afraid to go fartherback," on account of mischievous Indians. For the same reasons the Potawatomiesand Ottawas who desire to settle in that country, would be afraid to locate onthe most eligible site. Other cases of similar character could be pointed to.It seems exceedingly necessary to the improvement of the territory to adoptmeasures that will give to the inhabitants of that country, and especially toemigrants, an assurance of safety.
     At a considerable expense to the U. States a roadhas been laid out from thestate of Missouri to Santa Fe in the Mexican territories. [54] Such has been theimprovement of trade to that country that this has become a plainly beaten wagonnroad. Our enterprising citizens have often returned from the mexican territoriesrichly


laden with silver, and driving before them Hundreds of Horses, Mules, &c.But the returns of the past season have been unsuccessful. While I was in thatcountry two caravans, at different times were robbed by those westernIndians.
     The first company had two men killed, and lostabout 700 mules and horses. Thesecond had one man killed, lost scarcely a less number of animals-were forced toabandon their wagons & baggage-carry about $6,000 in specie on their backsand hide it in the earth, and come home on foot, exposed to great distress.The late successes of those marauders, it may be expected, will embolden them intheir robberies-and invite a greater number to engage in them, and our Indiansettlements in that country, as well as the trade to Santa Fe, are destined soonto feel the effects of them more seriously than heretofore, unless efficientmeasures to check them be speedily adopted by our government. What measures wouldbe most eligible is not easily determined. [55] The villages of many of thoseIndians who are known to be engaged in these acts of hostility, are within theMexican territories. They wander on the sources of Arkansaw along the mountains,and make excursions south and east --send an armed force into the country wherethey wander. They could fly faster than troops could pursue. It would beimpossible to come upon them unawares, for they are ever on the alert in thisrespect, and those woodless plains forbid the concealment of the traveller. Iftroops by strategem were to come in contact with a company of Indians, it wouldbe almost, or quite impossible to decide whether they were offendors, or aninoffensive hunting party, for every hunting party is prepared for war, onaccount of their continual dread of their enemies. Buffalos and other game areabundant in every place. They would therefore feel no inconvenience in flyingfrom one place to another, and so soon as our troops would return, they would beready to resume their mal-conduct.
     To station troops farther west than any are atpresent located would be betterthan the plan above referred to but it could not obviate the difficulty. They hadthe hardihood last summer to attack and kill our citizens almost within sight ofFort Towson. For this they were in return scourged, but not reformed. I hope Ishall not be deemed uncharitable for conjecturing that others, beside Indianshave a hand in these depredations upon our citizens. No company, I believe, hasyet been attacked on it's way to Santa Fe; attacks are invariably made on thosewho are returning. The times of their


leaving Santa Fe are there known, and opportunity afforded for making timelypreparations for mischief. They are watched from their outsetting until afavourable opportunity offers for the attack.
     In order to put a stop to these alarming raids, Iwould advise that from theOsages, who are the only Indians avowedly engaged in this war, a delegation besent into the country where those Pawnees and Comanches, and others might befound, for the purpose of making peace with them. [56] Let them be conducted bysuchcommissioners of government as would be necessary, and one company of soldiers,with say, two light field pieces. The Spring season would be the best time tocommence the expedition. Leave the state of Missouri at the mouth of Kanzasriver, and proceed westwardly. Ten days journey might bring them in contact withsome, by whom messages of peace could be forwarded to others, and runners sentstill farther after hunting or war parties, and places would be agreed on fromtime to time for meeting the several bands. Four or five months would besufficient for the purposes of the expedition, which would terminate by a moresouthern route. Meat for subsistence could be obtained abundantly in every place,and the costs of the expedition might be very [trifling?].
     I am in possession of facts communicated to me by arespectable trader, [57] notlong since acquainted with those Indians, and capable of conversing with them,which fully convince me that such a visit would be successful in inducing them tobe peaceable with Osages and other Indians in that country and to cease theirdepredations on the Santa Fe road. I have reason to believe that those Indianswould eagerly avail themselves of such a state of things should the subject belaid before them in its proper light. Peace once established could be preserved,because the stipulations would be immediately followed by the establishment oftrading houses as far as our boundaries extend, and in other respects they wouldbe brought within the ken and influence of our government. This done they wouldgive us in future no more trouble. While in our acquaintance with them we shouldfind our account in matters of trade. Instead of being robbers they would becometrappers, and the trade of the


mountains, already lucrative, could be carried on without molestation.     The plan has not been disclosed to the Osages, butwhile I was in their countrysuch enquiries were made and such answers returned by some Osages of influence,that I have no doubt that the nation could readily be brought into themeasure.
     I have the honor to be with Very great Respect,Sir
          Your ObedientServant
               Isaac McCoy
     During the whole of both tours I kept a dailyjournal. It was of importance onboth that we had a map [prepared for the occasion?], of the country betweenArkansaw Territory and state of Missouri, and the Rocky mountains, and extendingfrom our southern boundaries north beyond the Territory proposed for the Indians.I regret that I have not had time since I returned from the woods to prepare sucha map, corrected, for the use of the Department.
     It only remains for me to obtain leave to express,with much confidence my opinion that the country under consideration is adequateto the purposes of a permanent and comfortable house for the Indians, andwhatever may be the obstacles which at present oppose, they may, nevertheless belocated there without recourse to any measure not in accordance with the mostrigid principles of justice and humanity. In such a location only can be foundhopes of their future prosperity-and here their prospects would not be shaded bya doubt.
     Washington City
          Jan. 29, 1829.


February 4, 1829.

     SIR: As leader of the exploring expedition,composed of deputations from theChoctaws, Chickasaws, and Creeks, and which was specially authorized by Congress,I have the honor to submit the following remarks, together with the notes,&c., taken on the route.
     In compliance with the instructions I received fromGeneral William Clark,Superintendent of Indian Affairs at St. Louis, we proceeded directly from St.Louis to the western boundary of the State of Missouri, near the mouth of theKansas river, and on the south


side of the Missouri. Finding that the deputations were averse to going as farnorth as the instructions required, I was induced in some measure to change thecontemplated route, and bear to the south. For our course, I would beg leave torefer you to the topographical sketch, herewith, taken by Lieutenant Hood and Mr.Bell; for a description of the general appearance and face of the country,together with the character of soil, &c., I would also refer you to the notestaken on the route, herewith enclosed.
     The Chickasaws and Choctaws being at war with theOsages, I thought it advisableto go to their villages, and effect, if possible, a peace. After consulting withthe deputations, and finding they were of my opinion, we concluded and went tothe Osage villages, where we were well received and hospitably treated. I inducedthem to make a peace satisfactory to both parties.
     There is a sufficient quantity of well timbered andwatered land on the Arkansasand its tributaries for the whole of the southern Indians, if a properdistribution be made.
     The Creek deputation expressed themselves in highterms of the country assignedto them by the Government, and will make a favorable report to their nation, andmake use of their influence in getting their people to emigrate to it.As is customary with Indians, the Choctaws and Chickasaws were very guarded inthe expression of any opinion about the country, or of their removing to it. I aminclined to believe, however, that, if the United States will procure from theChoctaws a sufficient portion of their lands, lying on and south of the Canadianfork of the Arkansas river, and make an offer of it to the Chickasaws, they willaccept it. This opinion is predicated upon some conversations I had with thedeputation at various times, but upon no positive assurance from them.
     The Chickasaws being in a great measure under theprotection of the Choctaws, inconsequence of the number of the latter tribe, I think it would be the bestpolicy to keep the two tribes together, as they are, and always have been,friendly towards each other, and also connected by the tie of a common language.I deem it unnecessary to say any thing more, as the notes, &c., accompanyingthis, will explain every thing necessary to be known, and more in detail.

I have the honor to be,
Your obedient servant,


Hon. P. B. PORTER,
Secretary of War.

     In compliance with orders received from theHonorable Secretary of War, theexploring expedition, composed of deputations from the Chickasaw, Choctaw, andCreek tribes of Indians, under the command of Capt. George H. Kennerly, left St.Louis on the 21st of October, 1828, for the purpose of examining the land to thewest of the State of Missouri, together with that situated between the Canadianforks of the Arkansas River.
     As topographers to the expedition, Lieut.Washington Hood and John W. Bell wereappointed to accompany it; which having done, they have the honor to make thefollowing report:
     The country from the western boundary line of theState of Missouri, as far asthe waters of the Arkansas, with but few exceptions, is prairie; the soilgenerally deep and rich, although it varies as it is situated at a greater orless distance from the streams watering the country; that, of course, being thebest which approaches nearest the creeks and rivers;, it is mostly of a darkbrown color, and doubtless, if put to the test, would produce abundantly.The prairie, with respect to appearance, differs a good deal between the twopoints mentioned; in some places it is quite rolling, even approaching to hills,and at others almost a plain surface; that, however, which lies in the vicinityof the State line has the latter appearance, whilst that which is on the watersof the Neosho, may be almost classed with the former. As the former howeverprevails, the soil becomes more sterile, on account of the rains washing it fromthe summits and sides of the hills into the valleys below. This, in some measure,accounts for the numerous quantities of small fragments of lime and sand stonewhich is met with on the ridges and sides of the hills of the prairie country.These hills, or more properly natural mounds, stand isolated very often,sometimes in clusters of from three to five, at different distances from eachother; they are often of a conical form, and again forming extensive ridges, theextremities of which are rounded off so as to present the appearance of asemitone. They vary in height from fifty to one hundred and fifty feet, but areseldom of greater altitude; their bases of different dimensions, according to theform.
     The country situated between the forks of theCanadian, after passing the mouthof the Little North fork, or Deep Fork as it is sometimes called, presents a verydifferent appearance. At the


distance of from seven to nine miles from the junction of the main Canadianwiththe Arkansas, it is in many places quite hilly; between these hills, however, weoften meet with very handsome valleys of considerable extent, well timbered. Thelatter is applicable to the hills also.
     The soil is here mixed with a great portion ofsand, no doubt arising from thedisintegration of the sand stone, which abounds in this part of the country. Itdiffers from that met with on the Neosho and Osage rivers, having, generally, avery dark cast, approaching almost to a purple color.
     It is said that the bottom land laying near themouth of the Canadian, andcontinuing up for the distance of four or five miles, is very fine and level,containing much, and capable of producing every thing which would render thesituation a delightful one. The margins of the different water courses in thisvicinity are generally pretty extensive, and must, in time, become thicklypopulated.
     The country from Missouri on as far as the CreekAgency on the Verdigris, restson an extensive bed of limestone; from this, continuing south, it appears to besandstone.
     The majority of the streams passed by theexpedition have always a number ofsmall branches acting as feeders; ravines, also, passing off from the prairies,the sides of which are ofttimes rocky, render the land in many placesconsiderably broken.
©    The current of these streams could not beconsidered as very rapid; probably, atthis season, being quite low, their tendency to rapidity is decreased; but, fromall accounts, the most of them, even the smallest branches, which, in some partsof the year, are completely dry, when swollen by the rains and the melting of thesnow in the Spring, render their velocity so great as to carry every thing beforeit. At this period, of course, the waters rise to a great height, inundating allthe country around, and sometimes to a considerable distance.
©    The Arkansas river is the largest of the streamspassed by the expedition afterleaving Missouri. It rises in the Rocky Mountains, and pursues a winding coursein a southeasterly direction, passing through a vast extent of country, until itdischarges itself into the Mississippi.
©    The banks of this stream are not high at either ofthe points where theexpedition forded it, and from the appearances presented, we would not supposethey were of any great height in its whole course. The width is between five andsix hundred yards at the


point where we first struck the river; the taste of the water is slightlybrackish; the banks are composed of a reddish clay, mixed with sand. This streamhas a milky appearance, corresponding in some degree with the color of its banks;it flows over a bed consisting of lime and sandstone, the latter predominating.The shores are a mixture of sand and gravel; the former of which, when the windis high, presents at a distance the appearance of a storm. This river is easilyforded in the vicinity of Cantonment Gibson, on the Neosho, at this season of theyear.
©    Into its waters are discharged those of someconsiderable streams; the Neosho,Verdigris, Illinois, and Canadian, are the principal ones. Their junctions withthe Arkansas are not far from each other, the whole being contained in thedistance, forty miles. The three first enter from the east, and the latter fromthe west of the Arkansas river.
©    The margins of these streams, as also of thetributaries, are generally timbered,sometimes continued along its whole course, and at others merely in groves; thisis the case on some parts of the Neosho or Grand River. The timber on this, aswell as the Osage, is very good, being large and of an excellent quality in manyplaces. The great fault to be found with it is on account of its scarcity, notextending at any point but a short distance from the water courses.
©    It consists generally of the following kinds, viz:walnut, hickory, elm, ash,black and white oak, coffee nut, hackberry, mulberry, &c. &c.
©    The Canadian country, from the distance of four orfive miles from its mouth, maybe considered as well timbered for seventy or eighty miles up the stream, andbetween the branches of the main river. In fact, this part appears to be coveredwith it; but, on continuing up towards its head waters, we are told very littleis met with, except on the small branches, tributaries to the Canadian. &c.,until we arrive at what is called by hunters "The Cross Timbers," passing betweenthe head waters, not only of this river, but also those of the Arkansas and itsbranches.
     Its width is from ten to thirty miles. Afterpassing beyond this, no timber ofany consequence is met with, the whole being a vast prairie country.On some parts of the Neosho, as we approached the Arkansas, canebrakes were seenupon the margins of this stream. These, however, in comparison with those moresouth, are but small; the common height of the cane being from seven to ten feet,the diameter in


proportion. In a number of places on the Arkansas and Illinois rivers, itgrows so close as to impede, in a great measure, the progress of any onetravelling through them.
©    The country ceded to the Osages, and continuingsouth, appears to abound in coal.In the bank of the Neosho river, near the Agency, and on the same side, there isa fine bed, having the same appearance, and possessing the same properties withthat found in the vicinity of Pittsburg. The bank of this stream, at thisplace, is exclusively sandstone, of a light red color, varying, however, toyellow and grey. Shell limestone is found also in the different little creeksand ravines about this agency.
©    The extent of this bed is not known; but itprobably continues for a greatdistance. At the point where the expedition forded the Riviere la Bate, or Riverof Reptiles, its entire bed, for the distance of from three to four hundredyards, was found to be of stone coal, of a similar kind with that mentionedabove.
©    In the southern bank of the Arkansas, just on theleft of the point at which westruck and forded the river, near Cantonment Gibson, there is a bluff composed ofstrata of slate and sandstone, the former of which is combined with a greatquantity of coal; in fact, it is found in a number of the small streams wateringthe country; from which we conclude, that, although there is a scarcity of fuelof one kind, yet nature has provided another in great quantities.A specimen of crystallized and transparent gypsum was received during the route,which was found on the smoky fork of the Kanzas river; it has a handsomeappearance, quite soft; the Indians procure, burn, and use it as a paint; whenburnt, it loses its transparency, becomes brittle, &c.; in what quantities itoccurs is not known.
©    Galena is said to occur in the different smallbranches in and about the landceded to the Osages; one specimen only was obtained, which was found in Flagriver, a small branch of the Neosho; it is crystallized, and would yield from 50to 60 per cent. of pure lead.
©    Near Mr. Cheauteau's trading house, on theNeosho, [59] between two and three milessoutheast from it, there is, apparently, a very fine salt spring; the water risesthrough a number of apertures made by the spring in a limestone rock which coversa space of about two acres.
     The quantity of salt which could be obtained from acertain quantity of the wateris not known, as the experiment has never been


made; from its taste, however, we would suppose that, if worked, it wouldprovevery productive.
©    From this spring at all times rises greatquantities of sulphuretted hydrogen; apiece of silver being placed in one of the apertures mentioned above, was turnedblack, thereby clearly indicating the presence of that gas.
For other information respecting the country passed through by the expedition, wewould respectfully refer to the notes which follow. And here we beg the libertyto observe, that on account of the short time which elapsed during the tour, wehad but little opportunity to give the country such an examination as it merits;particularly the part laying on the Canadian, and between the forks of the sameriver. It cannot be expected that the map accompanying this sketch is in everyrespect correct, as, upon such an expedition as has been made, there are but fewconveniences to enable us either to give satisfaction to ourselves, or thoseconcerned with the expedition. Enough, however, has been said, to give, ingeneral, a view of the country between the waters of the Blue, and those of theSouth Fork of the Canadian river.

We have the honor to be,
Very respectfully,
Lt. U. S. Army.

ST. Louis, Mo.
13th Jan. 1829.

©    DEAR SIR: Enclosed you will find the notes whichare to accompany the maps. [60] Theshort period allowed to finish them, in order to meet you at Washington City,would not permit a revision of them; as they are, we believe them to be correct,although not so full as we would wish them.
     If it is possible, we would like to get a supply ofthe map and notes, together with the general report.
We have the honor to be,
Very respectfully, Your obedient servants,
Lt. U. S. A.


Washington City, D. C.
©    The following notes are taken from the originalones made on the expedition,commencing at the western boundary line of the State of Missouri, five milessouth of the mouth of the Kanzas, and concluding at a point of the same linesituated between the Osage Agency and the Harmony Mission, on the Osage river:[61]

Course: From line to < No. 1, S. 45 W.
Miles from one point to another: ½
Total distance from qr. line: ½

     The face of the country moderately rolling, soilvery rich, well timbered, black and white oak, red and slippery elm, walnut,hickory, hackberry, black and honey locust, ash, lynn, some cherry-treeunderwood, red bud, pawpaw and hazel; six or eight hundred yards from line,crossed near the head of a small branch running to left, [62] winding its way tothe Big Blue river.


Course: No. 1 to 2,
Miles from one point to another: 4
Total distance from qr. line: 4½

     No. 1 entered prairie at a projecting point,woods on right and left for half a mile, where the timber on left disappeared;that on the right continued to No. 2, at a distance varying from 100 yards tohalf a mile from course, which was over the points of ridges making down to theBlue river, tributary to Missouri, which runs here parallel with course betweenone and two; face of country gently rolling, soil rich.

Course: No. 2 to 3, S. 20 W.
Miles from one point to another: 3
Total distance from qr. line: 7#189;

     Country generally rolling, soil rich, course alittle to left; Perry and Comstalk's (Shawnee) village to right, on an eminence,at the foot of which winds the waters of a branch of the Blue river. [63] Thegeneral course of this creek, a little beyond this point, west. At No. 3 crossedthe Santa Fe road; timber at this point just in sight on right; none in view onleft of course.

Course: No. 3 to B.C.S.
Distance from one point to another: 3
Total distance from qr. line: 10½

     Half a mile, passed over a moderately elevatedridge, which divides the waters of the Little and Big Blue; [64] from its summitno timber in sight, nothing in fact but an extensive rolling prairie; half a milefrom point B, a small rivulet, on which is a handsome grove of timber; this headsabout two and a half miles above where we crossed it; its general course fromwest to east, joining the Big Blue a short distance below; proceeding half a mileover level and well timbered land to point B, we struck the waters of the BigBlue; the timber on this stream, at point B, is near a mile in width, of the samekind as that which is found at the line; this however decreases as you approachits source, which is distant 10 or 12 miles, a little south of west; it is hereabout ten yards in width, banks 10 or 12 feet high, water clear, of a bluishgreen appearance where it is deep; its taste corresponds with that which is foundpassing over (as this stream does) a bed of limestone; soil from No. 3 to thispoint generally good.

Course: B. to No. 1, C.S.
Distance from one point to another: 4
Total distance from qr. line: 14½

     Nov. 10.-After passing this river and continuinghalf a mile through oak, walnut, and hickory timber, ascending a longgentle slope from the stream, entered prairie; from the top of this rise we had acom manding view of the surrounding country; a continued rolling prairie onright; on left, the appearance was beautiful; numerous small streams, theirmargins timbered, were seen winding their courses in the valleys of this rollingcountry generally to E. and N. E.; continuing on for two miles, crossed a smallbranch running nearly at right angles with course; its banks are timbered, thewidth of the timber about 300 yards; after leaving it, we touched upon a prairieto the right; shortly after crossed another branch running from southwest tonortheast, which intersects the former a short distance below our crossing place;the water of both is clear, and corresponds with the waters of the Big Blue, asit respects color and taste; both are tributaries of this stream. From this weascended a gently rising hill; on reaching its summit we had another view of thecountry around; this elevation is at < No. 1; groves of timber were seen to thesoutheast, at some distance from course; country, as usual, rolling, soil good.


Course: No. 1 to C, 4 18#189; C. S. 45 W.
Distance from one point to another: 4
Total distance from qr. line: 18½

     Half a mile from this crossed the Main Santa Feroad; two miles further, crossed a small creek, three miles from its head,containing clear running water, its course from northwest to southeast; masses oflimestone are found on the summits and sides of the small ridges leading to thisbrook; near its margin there are a few scattering trees, which are low andscrubby; country rather hilly near this creek. Continuing one and a half mile,came to another creek, at point C; the course of this is from southwest tonortheast; it forked just below point G [C?]; the left branch winds off in asoutherly direction; its banks are of limestone, in some places perpendicular,the limestone in horizontal layers. The face of the country in this vicinity isgenerally rolling, but, as an approach is made to the creeks, it becomes brokenand hilly, sometimes (as it is at this point) with steep and rocky cliffs. Verylittle timber on this creek; soil generally good.

Course: From C to No. 1, S. 50 W.

Distance from one point to another: 10
Total distance from qr. line: 28#189;

     Nov. 11: Crossed the left fork of this creek,with banks of limestone, as before;from this we ascended for two and a half miles, until we arrived at the dividingridge between the waters of the Blue and Grand rivers, the latter a branch of theOsage; from the top of this ridge no timber was seen in any direction; the courseof this ridge from northwest to southeast; half a mile, crossed what is generallycalled in this part of the country, "a dry creek," leading to the Grand river,its course S. 40 W.; at the distance of 7 or 8 miles, it increases; as itapproaches Grand river, its margins in some places timbered slightly; we passeddown the northern side of this stream, crossing numerous drains from the prairie,which is rolling; these drains from the prairie render the land near the streamquite broken; at No. 1, the timber on the creek to the left, which continues for3 or 4 miles back, disappears; a little after, we met with a small grove oftimber on right. The soil of this part of the country has been washed from itsoriginal situation in many. places, showing a part of the extensive bed oflimestone on which it rests; soil very good.

Course>/B>: No. l to 2, S. 30 W.
Distance from one point to another: 1
Total distance from qr. line: 29½

     Course for a short time changed to left, windinground some steep rockyhollows; timber to the west and northwest, down the hollows; country very rollingto south of course; soil, when uninterrupted, good.

Course: No. 2 to D, 60 W.
Distance from one point to another: 1
Total distance from qr. line: 30½

     A few hundred yardsfrom < No. 2, entered timber, which continued to a creek, another branch of theGrand river; country gently declining from the edge of the timber to creek; thesoil mixed with nu-


merous small fragments of limestone; the course of it is from north to south; atthe point where we struck and forded this stream, it has a beautiful grove oftimber; it forks about half a mile above the last point mentioned; country not somuch broken on the west as on the east side of it; the soil here is very rich.

Course: D to No. 1, S.
Distance from one point to another: 10
Total distance from qr. line: 40#189;

     Nov. 12.-Proceeded three or four hundred yards;entered prairie; country nearlylevel; a moderately elevated ridge to right; continued 3 miles, and crossed themain branch of Grand river; its course appeared to be from northwest tosoutheast, and joined the one last mentioned about half a mile below; it is 15 or20 yards in width, banks varying, 10 or 12 feet general height; beautiful groveof timber upon it, width 5 or 600 yards; the country is more rolling on the souththan on the north side; this stream, like all we passed, is at present very low;the water corresponds in appearance, &c. with that of the Blue; continuing afew hundred yards, enter prairie, nearly level about one mile; then ascend aridge which divides the creek just passed and that in front; country on thisridge and S. S. E. and S. W., rather hilly and broken; limestone exposed in manyplaces on the summits and sides of hills, and also in the prairie; passed fromthe ridge into an extensive valley, running from west to east, in which is alittle timber, which is on a small dry creek; at the distance of one mile,crossed another creek, running from southwest to northeast; country rolling, soilgood; in a number of places, however, the soil contains the mixture of fragmentsof lime stone; after leaving this, in a short time we crossed the dividing ridgebetween the Grand and the Osage rivers. The country from the summit of this ridgeto the east and west appears hilly and broken, but to the south rolling, withsome extensive valleys; passed half < No. 1, in a valley.

Course: No. l to 2, S.25 W.
Distance from one point to another: 3
Total distance from qr. line: 43#189;

     Between Nos. 1 and 2 the country is gentlyrolling; no timber, but good soil;about half way between the two points is a detached hill of a conical form, tothe right of course; between 6 and 800 yards circumference of base, and altitude90 or 100 feet.

Course: No. 2 to E, S. 45 W.
Distance from one point to another: 3
Total distance from qr. line: 46#189;

     At point E there is a small ridge, the ends ofwhich are rounded off; rollingprairie to the Osage river at point E, a few small streams or branches, with afew scattering trees on them, wind their courses toward this river in sight fromcourse; before arriving at the bank of the Osage, we crossed a small branch atthe edge of the timber; the wood is on the northern margin of the Osage, at thispoint in width half a mile,


the river 60 or 70 yards wide, water clear, banks 25 or 30 feet in height, andcomposed of the rich alluvial soil of the country to irregular depths, thensucceeds a bed of sand and gravel, of a reddish brown color to the water's edge;over a bed of this the Osage winds its course, which course, in general, appearsto be from W. N. W. to E. S. E. The width of timber varies on this stream from ahalf to two miles; the soil near and in the vicinity of the river is of the bestquality.

Course: E to No. 1, S. 30 E.
Distance from one point to another: 5
Total distance from qr. line: 41#189; [65]

     November 13th.-Crossed the Osage, [66] which isat this time easily forded, being quite low; a few hundred yards from thepoint, at which we struck the opposite bank, enter prairie in the valley runningto the river; small hills to left of course, which divide the waters of the mainOsage from another branch three or four miles south; its junction with the mainstream is four or five miles from the place where we forded the river; continuingthree miles, again strike the Osage; a high craggy bluff at this point; sometimber on the ridges, and also on the bluff, which is near 200 feet in height,the country very rolling south, between this and the last creek spoken of.Limestone still predominates, making its appearance in horizontal strata in thebluff, and sides and summits of the hills.

Course: No. 1 to F, S.
Distance from one point to another: 3#189;
Total distance from qr. line: 45

     Continued one mile; passed into a valley inwhich ran a dry creek with a few scattering trees; its course is from E. to W.;somehills on the south side of this creek; kept down the creek some distance, andcrossed at a point of hills on the east; about a mile S. W. of this point westruck the creek, and passed up it about half a mile; on the north side of thisstream there are some high hills, the summits of which are bold; large masses oflimestone in layers, projecting a short distance in some places over the sides ofthe hills; at this point there is another beautiful grove of timber; the courseof creek appears to be from W. S. W. to E.N.E. to the Osage; the soil generallygood. The creek just mentioned is 25 or 30 yards wide, and banks 15 or 20 feethigh; at present this stream is very low.

Course: F to G, S. 30 W.
Distance from one point to another: 15
Total distance from qr. line: 60

     November 14, 1828. Passed up a valley and bottomofthis branch; there is a range of hills to left during the whole distance, pointsof which frequently come within a short distance of the creek, but sometimesrecede to such distances as to form extensive valleys and bottoms.


     These bottoms and valleys are generally welltimbered, particularly the former;the summits and sides of the hills are generally capped with large uncoveredbeds, or rather masses of limestone, the layers of which are horizontal; they arein height from 50 to 150 feet; the sides are mostly covered with the usual kindsof upland timber, such as post-oak, black jack, &c.; the country at somedistance from the creek is prairie, hilly, and broken; rendered so by thenumerous ravines or drains which serve to carry off the water from the prairie tothe creek mentioned above, which we ascended. About three miles below G crossedthe creek to the west side, and proceeded about 300 yards to prairie; this isrolling, which continues for a great distance; in fact, as far as the eye candistinguish any object, the horizon bounding the view; the soil of this valley isof the first quality; it is also very good in all the prairie country in thisvicinity, except where the land has been laid bare by the rains.

Course: G to No. 1, S. 50 W.
Distance from one point to another: 6
Total distance from qr. line: 66

     November 15, 1828. Proceeded up the valley ofthe creek on the west side; face of the country almost level on course to < No.1; prairie on right gently ascending for one or two miles, then became rolling;crossed a branch, on which is a few scattering trees' about half way betweenthese two points; branch courses from W. to E., soil varying, near the branchgood, but a little removed; stony.

Course: No. 1 to 2, S.
Distance from one point to another: 10
Total distance from qr. line: 76

     Creek here approaches course; very little timberon thewest side of it at this point; the east side is hilly and broken, with sometimber on points of ridges, as well as on the numerous tributaries of thisbranch; the creek here takes an easterly direction; little or no timber on thebranches leading to it from west, continuing seven or eight miles, and pass thedividing ridge between the waters of the Osage and Neosho; country rolling; thesoil mixed with numerous small and large fragments of limestone, flint, andgravel, &c.; from the descending point the country becomes less rolling;continued to < No. 2, at which we crossed a drain, which we descended to another,winding its course from east; these branches met just below where we crossed; alittle timber in the fork; soil across the dividing ridge poor and stony.

Course: No. 2 to H, S. 50 W.
Distance from one point to another: 3
Total distance from qr. line: 79

     The country to H is gently rolling in our courseboth toright and left; some sandstone of a reddish cast was found here, mixed in beds oflimestone; soil generally good; crossed the creek to west side again, where thereis a handsome grove of timber.


Course: H. to No. 1, S. 50 W.
Distance from one point to another: 6
Total distance from qr. line: 85

     November 16, 1828: Continued 300 yards; enteredprairie, rolling in alldirections to No. 1, except in the valley of the creek which we passed; this runsto the left nearly parallel with course. The soil here, as well as for somedistance back, in many places, is mixed, as has been before stated, withlimestone in small fragments; here is also fragments of sandstone, flint,&c.; where this is not the case, the soil is good; timber of the Neosho tothe west in sight.

Course: No. 1 to 1, S.10 W.
Distance from one point to another: 10
Total distance from qr. line: 95

     Crossed the creek again at this point; here is aconical hill north side of thecreek; half a mile below the crossing place it wound around with course, runningparallel with it; face of the country nearly level to the S. and E. side of thiswater course for a mile or two, then changes to rolling three miles; crossed acreek running east, joining the former on right, a short distance below;tributary of the Neosho; half a mile further, continuing one mile from thiscreek, we struck the Neosho river; coming in from the N. W., rolling prairie toleft, on east of river; to point I the soil very rocky in some places near themargin; with this exception, the soil is good.

Course: I, to Osage Agency. S. 40 E.
Distance from one point to another: 19
Total distance from qr. line: 114

     November 17, 1828.-The appearance of thecountry, from this as far on as theOsage Agency, is rolling; a few miles east of the river, between these twopoints, there are several small creeks tributaries of the Neosho; two miles fromI, there is one running general direction N. N. E. to S. S. W., on which is agrove of timber nearly half a mile in breadth; at present no running water;another branch is eight or ten miles below this, with timber; its course from N.N. E. to S. S. W.; [67] about half a mile this side of the Agency there isanother,running from N. E. to S. W. [68] This is not so large as the former, nor does it,after a distance of one mile and a half from river, afford as handsome groves oftimber; the face of the country between these creeks varies from level pieces ofland to rolling prairie, and especially in the bend of the Neosho at the Agency;the timber of the river is generally confined to the east side of the followingkinds, viz : black and white oak, overcup oak, walnut, hickory, hackberry, redand slippery elm, black and honey locust, lynn, ash, a little cotton wood, andnear the margin, birch, willow, and sycamore; soil between the two pointsmentioned generally good; the Osage Agency is on the west side of the river, on amoder-


ately elevated rise, which extends near the Neosho, and forms here a bluffbank. [69]

     The Neosho river at the agency is between 50 and60 yards in width; the height ofthe bank varies from 15 to 25 feet on the east side; the bluff bank is of muchgreater height, and is composed of sandstone of various colors, generally of alight grey cast, often red. The bed of the river is gravel, the water clear; thedepth at this season 3#189; to 4 feet at the point mentioned above. In thebluff, on the western side of the river, there is a formation of stone coal; itcontains a great deal of bitumen; when burnt, gives out a dark smoke; burns witha reddish brown flame; in fact, it appears to possess the properties of the coalwhich is found in such abundance in the vicinity of Pittsburg, Pa. The specimenobtained was from near the surface; of course not so good as that which is moredeeply imbedded. The extent of this formation is not known, but it is probablethat it extends to a great distance in this country, as it will be seen, as weadvance, that this is not the only place it is to [be] met with. The sandstonehere appears to predominate, and doubtless from this as far as the expeditionproceeded may be considered a sand stone country.

Course: Agency to the village of White Hair. S. 45 E.
Distance from one point to another: 6
Total distance from qr. line: 120

     From the agency to White Hair's village is arolling prairie country. [70] About three miles from the former there is a creekrunning to the Neosho on left, with a few scattering trees; east, half a milethis side, or north of the village, there is another; both, however, small.Sandstone is found in the sides, or rather composing the sides of the drainsleading down to the river; soil good. Timber on Neosho from #189; mile to 2 inwidth.

W. H. Vil. to J. S.Course:
Distance from one point to another: 24#189;
Total distance from qr. line: 144#189;

     From this village for 3 miles the course was S.30 E., change to S. 20 E. for 3 miles; crossed a small dry creek, which forksjust above this point; half a mile below it joins the Neosho; a few scatteringtrees on it; on the points of the ridges which make to it above the forks, thereis some post oak and black jack; continuing 3 miles crossed another creek withsome scrubby timber on it; its course from W. by N. to E. by S. Course from this,for 8 or 10 miles, nearly due S., crossing the heads or near the heads of severalhollows or drains which lead to the Neosho on left; from this, S. W. for 5 or 6miles, to a creek called the


River of Reptiles at K [J.?]. [71] The general course of this creek appears tobefrom N. W. to S. E., and heads opposite the Osage Agency; it is about 20 yardswide, banks of clay 15 or 20 feet high. Throughout the season there is alwayssome water in this creek; but at this time, at the point we passed it, it was notrunning. There is a handsome grove of timber on this creek, from 100 yards tohalf a mile in width. The general face of the country between the two last pointsis rolling; but as it approaches the river it becomes somewhat hilly and broken,many ravines running from the prairie to river having this effect, andconsequently producing this difference in appearance. Sand and limestone arefrequently met with in these ravines, and often exposed in the prairie; soilgenerally good. The distance of point J. from the Neosho river is 5 miles; thecountry between these streams is nearly level at this point.

Course: J. to K. S.
Distance from one point to another: 20#189;
Total distance from qr. line: 165

     Three miles quite level, soil not good; crossedthe"Riviere du Bate," or River of Reptiles. The bed of this river at this point, forabout 300 yards, is com posed wholly of stone coal, of the same quality andappearance as that which is found at the Osage Agency; probably a continuation ofthe same formation; about 4 miles from the point at which we struck and crossedthe river of Reptiles to the Neosho; from this proceeded over a very levelprairie of 3 miles, and crossed a small dry creek. The soil of this prairie isnot of the best quality; the creek has a few scattering trees; ranges from S. W.to N. E. into the Riviere du Bate; from the branch, the country is rolling in alldirections, for 7 or 8 miles. Met with a grove of timber on a ridge composed, asusual, of post oak and black jack; continuing 2 miles, crossed the head waters ofthe Planche Cabin, or Plank Cabin creek; course of it on right a little W. of S.;its general course is nearly due S. to its junction with the Neosho. Thence overa gently rolling prairie as before; passed a number of conical hills on left ofcourse. From this our direction was S. W. to the creek at point L.; which creek,at this point, is narrowly skirted with timber of the usual kind; found on theNeosho river, at this part of the creek, stone coal was again met with, whichwarrants the conclusion that although there is a great scarcity of timber inS.


this country, yet nature has provided an abundance of fuel of another kind, asdoubtless, from the appearances presented, this part of the country is wellsupplied with coal. [72]

     From point L. to the Neosho is about 12 miles,rolling prairie; soil this dayvery variable; west of creek, country also rolling. It is not far from this tothe dividing ridge between the waters of the Neosho, or Grand river, and theVerdigris.

Course: From K. to Cheauteaus Trading House. S. 5 W.
Distance from one point to another: 35
Total distance from qr. line: 200

     November 24, 1828. From K, course S. E. for 2miles, at which place there are some hills, with timber; before arriving at thetimber the course changed to S., leaving the timber to left; country gentlyrolling in our course, and to the creek on our right, about one mile distant; onthe left it is variable, rolling and hilly. Three miles from point K, crossed abranch running to the right; 1 mile further crossed a deep hollow, at the head ofwhich there are large rocks of sandstone; its course is to the right. Continuing3 or 4 miles, we meet with timbered hills, the timber of the usual kind found offfrom the margins of the streams of this country, viz: post oak and black jack;from course to creek on right, 1 mile; an extensive valley between this and theNeosho to the E. and S. E., for 7 or 8 miles. For 5 or 6 miles the country ismoderately rolling to the point at which we crossed the "Plank cabin Creek" tothe west side; the creek at this point is about 20 yards wide, water low; thetimber is half a mile in width. At this place we met with the first cane brakesince our departure from the line; it is in small quantities, however; and indimensions, as to height, &c., it will scarcely bear comparison with thatfound more to the south. Three miles from the Plank Cabin crossed a small creek,with but little timber, running from W. to E. into the former; about 1 mile toleft, red sandstone is found in the banks and bed of this creek. The countrybetween the 2 last creeks varies; proceeding from the first, on the west side,for 1 or 2 miles, it is gently rolling, then becomes rolling; afterward, as youapproach the second, hilly and broken. Between the last branch and the point atwhich we struck the Neosho, at the mouth of Slippery Rock creek, [73] a distanceof10 or 12 miles in our course, country gently rolling. To the left, at variabledistances, from half to 2 miles, there was timber on the summit and sides of theridges, which make down to


the Cabin de Planche, which discharges itself into the Neosho, 2 or 3 milesabovethe mouth of Slippery Rock; to the right, for some distance, gently rolling, thenhilly and broken; to the west, 7 or 8 miles, is seen a ridge of well timberedhills; soil since point K not so rich as that which lies higher up the country.Slippery Rock creek, near its mouth, is 15 or 20 yards in width; the valley upwhich it runs is very narrow, so that the hills making down to the water's edgeare steep; its course is over a smooth rocky bottom. There are seen in the banksof some creeks in this vicinity alternate layers of sand and limestone, of depthsfrom 2 to 3 feet; the layer over which Slippery Rock creek flows is of limestone.Mr. Cheauteau's trading house stands 10 miles from this creek, on the east sideof the Neosho river. [74] During our course from the last point mentioned to thetrading establishment, the hills of the Neosho were continually in sight,containing, for short distances back from the stream, timber on the right ofcourse; until we arrived at Cheauteau's, a number of isolated conical hillspresented themselves near the course, the sides of which were barren, the richsoil being washed from them; still further beyond these hills there is a range oftimbered hills, forming a ridge, extending from N. W. to S. E. About 1#189;milesbefore arriving at the latter point, crossed in a valley a small creek making tothe Neosho; towards the head waters of this, the country is hilly and broken.About 1 mile S. E. of Mr. Cheauteau's, on the E. side of the Neosho, there is asalt spring, rising from a limestone rock, covering from 1 to 2 acres; severalopenings are made in this rock by the water, which has a strong saline taste;this water is highly impregnated with sulph. hyd. gas, which rises and isperceptible to any one on approaching the spring. The quantity of salt which thiswater would yield is not known, as no experiment of that kind has been made; butit is probable that it would produce abundantly. [75]

Course: Cheauteau's to point L. S. 5 W.
Distance from one point to another: 14
Total distance from qr. line: 214

     November 25, 1828. Advancing seven miles,crossed Pond creek; [76] the face ofthe country between these points, after ascending the hills from the Neosho, isnearly level; the timber on these hills, along on our course, is seen, and becomemore bold and prominent than they are further up the river; about half way be


tween Cheauteau's and point L, there are two detached hills, one on each sideofcourse a few hundred yards distant; the one on left of a conical, and that onright an oblong figure, both from 70 to 100 feet in height; on the right ofcourse, for some distance, is seen a number of hills of different forms-a rangeof timbered hills on right, which are in the vicinity of Pond creek, on its westside, dividing the waters of the Neosho and Verdigris; the general course ofcreek appears to be from N. W. to S. E. Frequent beds of lime and sandstoneabound at this place, as seen on the summit and sides of the hills; the formerappears here to predominate; soil good; this creek is about 10 yards in width;rocky bank on east; the western bank is of clay, mixed with the soil of thecountry; this passes over a bed of limestone; from this creek we passed over alevel prairie for one and a half miles, and crossed a point of the ridge, onwhich is some post oak and black jack, extending towards the Neosho on the east,dividing the waters of the latter and the creek at L; this ridge is of sandstone,probably in layers, with limestone. To a great distance on right of course, theface of the country is very rolling, rather inclining to hilly; some small grovesof timber are met with in many places. From the summit of the west ridge, wedescended into the valley of the Neosho; continuing one and a half miles, passeda creek at L, flowing over a bed of compact limestone of a blueish color; banksvery low; on them there is a beautiful grove of timber, more abundant, and of abetter quality than is here generally met with; its general course is from W. N.W. to E. S. E.; soil, from Pond creek, variable; on the east side of the Neosho,from the Trading House, the face of the country, near the river, hilly andbroken.

Course: L. to the Creek Agency. S. 5 W.
Distance from one point to another: 26
Total distance from qr. line: 240

     November 26, 1828. Continuing course for a fewhundred yards, there is a highridge of sandstone, large masses of which are detached. One mile from L, crosseda small creek, its general course being from N. W. by W. to S. E. by E.; [77]soil of a middling quality-generally rolling and hilly further up the creek; fromcreek to the Union Missionary Establishment, distance four miles, a rolling andrather hilly country; timber, in some places, increasing as it approaches nearerthe river. The mission is situated at the head of the valley to the Neosho, [78]ina S. S. E. direction,


about a half mile; before arriving at the station, we crossed a small ravinewithclear running water, wound its way from right to left from the hills on right;[79]the hills in this vicinity are covered with sandstone in variable quantities;these are higher than any we have met with on our course from the State line ofMissouri; after leaving this valley, and advancing to the Creek Agency on theVerdigris, there is a rolling prairie country, with the exception of a creekcalled Round Bottom creek, on which is a small quantity of timber; during thecourse, however, the timber on the Neosho was always in sight, and generally fromhalf to three miles distant on left; the right is all rolling prairie; at thedistance of eight or ten miles from the agency, we were able to perceive thetimber on the Verdigris R.; before arriving at the agency, however, we met withtimber composed principally of post oak and black jack; at the edge of the timberthere is a small creek, which we crossed. The agency is situated immediately onthe eastern bank of the Verdigris, three or four miles from its mouth; there is ahigh sandstone bluff or hill just below, and on the same side with the agency.[80]

     The river is here between 60 and 70 yards inwidth; the water not so clear asthat of the Neosho; the western bank appears to be a mixture of sand, clay, andgravel; this is the highest point to which steam or keel boats ascend, thenavigation being interrupted by a fall in the river 6 or 700 yards above thispoint; the fall is from five to six feet; it is said that large quantities ofstone coal are found near this place. Verdigris tributary of Arkansas.

Course: Creek Agency to Cant. Gibson. S. 25 E.
Distance from one point to another: 4
Total distance from qr. line: 244

     November 30, 1828. From the Creek Agency toCantonment Gibson, the country, towithin one or two miles of the latter, is gently rolling, when it becomes nearlylevel, being the margin or bottom land of the Neosho; on this land, as well as onthe Arkansas, there are numerous cane brakes; at this place it grows very thick,the soil of this bottom being very rich; there are one or two small prairies onthe course between these two points; they extend but a short distance to theright, but continue out to the left into the extensive prairie between the watersof the Neosho and Verdigris; the bottom spoken of above is well timbered; abouttwo miles from the agency, there is a small brook of clear water running to theright, which heads in the hills of the Neosho. Cantonment Gib-


son is situated immediately on the east bank of the Neosho, three or fourmilesabove its mouth; the river, at this point, as usual, runs over a bed of gravel;the water is perfectly clear, so that the bottom is easily and distinctly seenwhen the river is deepest; it is at this point, at this time, from six to eightfeet in depth; the river here is 170 or 180 yards in width; the soil betweenthese points is generally very good; that of the bottom is rendered, in somedegree, useless, on account of the annual Spring freshets, which at that seasonrise, and, for some time, inundate the whole of it.

Course: Cant. Gibson to M. S. 20 W.
Distance from one point to another: 19
Total distance from qr. line: 263

     December 2, 1828. Forded the Arkansas river oneand half miles below the mouth ofthe Neosho; an extensive rich bottom between Cantonment Gibson and the Arkansas;for the distance of two or three miles in our course, is a continued cane brake,the height being from 10 to 12 feet, sometimes a little greater.

     The Arkansas river, at the point where we struckand forded the river, is aboutfive hundred yards in width; the banks 25 or 30 feet in height, and composed of areddish brown colored sand and clay; on the south side, just below the point atwhich we left the stream, there is a bluff, composed of alternate layers of slateand clay; the layers are very thin; the latter is mixed with coal; both banks ofthe Arkansas are timbered; the northern bank, however, has the greatest quantity;the kind of timber is the same as that which is found on the Neosho; soil of thebottom on the south side is very rich, of a reddish cast near the river; theprairie on this side approaches near the Arkansas; continuing half mile, somehills on right; at the distance of two and a half miles from the river, crossed acreek running from S. W. by S. to N. E., by N.; [81] some low and scrubbly timberis found on this creek; the country is rather hilly on the north side of thebranch-some of them timberedthe summits and sides of many having sandstone rocksupon them; this may be considered exclusively a sandstone country; after passingon seven or eight miles, we crossed two or three branches running to left, on themargin of which, there is some timber; these branches are all tributaries to theArkansas. South of this, there is a range of rocky hills, extending from N. W. toS. E.; we ascended these, and from their summit the descent was gentle to what iscalled


"Darden's creek," [82] a distance of two and a half miles; soil very rich,loose, and mellow, of a reddish cast; there is, on the south side of this creek,a range of timbered hills; at the point where we struck this creek; a branchenters from the north, passed up the creek one mile, and crossed it at M; hereanother fork makes in just below the last point mentioned from the south side,[83] up the course of which there is a valley, there being high rocky hills oneach side, to the distance of three miles; these hills are from 150 to 200 feetin height; there is more timber at and near here than at any place between thisand the Arkansas bottom; the course of creek, at this place, from W. by N. to E.by S., 10 or 12 yards wide; banks high, and composed of sand and clay; the soil,since we crossed the Arkansas, is mixed with a considerable portion of sand.

Course: M. to N. S. 20 W.
Distance from one point to another: 19
Total distance from qr. line: 282

     December 3, 1828. On leaving point M. onDarden's creek, we passed up the valleynearly due S. for 3 miles; high hills of sandstone on each side, and at the headof the valley, distant apart about half a mile, and joining to the north. About 1mile after ascending from the valley, we entered prairie again; the soil betweenpoint N. on this not good; the principal timber on ridges post oak and blackjack. Proceeded three miles over a gently rolling prairie, and recrossed Darden'screek, which runs here from N. E. to S. W.; here there is but little timber;rather hilly towards its head, 2 or 3 miles above; passed over the same kind ofprairie as was just mentioned, having on right, for 4 or 5 miles, about 1 milefrom course, a ridge of timber; soil variable; course changed S. W.; enteredtimber, post oak and black jack; crossed several branches running towards the S.,and at 2 miles distance entered another small prairie. From this point we had aview of the hills beyond the north fork of the Canadian; valley from this pointto river generally timbered; soil, since entering the wood, very poor, mixed withgreat quantities of sand. Two and a half miles from this to the N. fork ofCanadian. On the north side of this fork the country falls off gently to theriver, but on the S. side it is hilly and broken in some degree; the hills on theN. side, or rather the high ground, contain the usual kind of timber, viz. postoak and black jack; but near the river, and on its margin, there is black andwhite oak,


overcupped white oak, black walnut, hickory, hackberry, mulberry, persimmon,cherry tree, red and slippery elm, black and honey locust, ash, sassafras, cottonwood, and, near the margin, birch, willow, and sycamore, Underwood, red haw,pawpaw, dogwood, red beed, &c. This fork, at the point where we struck it,which is a little below the mouth of Deep or Little North Fork, is from 60 to 70yards in width; the bank on the N. 45 or 50 feet high, of sand and clay; thewater of a greyish or muddy appearance; the opposite bank is not so high; soil,near the river, very loose and mellow, mixed with a considerable portion of sand,of a dark reddish brown color, almost approaching to a purple. "(At the pointwhere we forded the N. Fork, at this season there is a fall over sandstone rockof from three to four feet perpendicular; an island containing timber is on ourright, about 10 yards from N. bank.)"

Course: N. to 0. at the mouth of the S. fork of the Canadian. S. 10W.
Distance from one point to another: 10
Total distance from qr. line: 292

     December 4, 1828. Course, on setting out frompoint N., S. 70 E. half a mile;struck the fork again. There is a great bend between this and point N.; countrynearly level, soil rich. Course from here S. 10 E.; passed down the bank 1#189;miles and forded the river; at this point the river is 100 yards wide; the N.bank at this place is 10 or 12 feet high; that on the S. side 25 or 30 feet, ofclay, sand, &c. About 100 yards from this bank we passed a deep creek, whichis very bad, on account of the clay of which its banks are composed being verythin, comes from the S. E. and proceeded over a rich and gently rolling country,well timbered, with the exception of a small prairie, 300 or 400 yards. Aftercrossing the creek last mentioned, at the distance of 2#189; miles recrossedthis creek, which had wound its way round, and was running here from W. to E.; onits north side there is a high rocky hill approaches near the creek, from 100 to125 feet in height; on ascending this hill the country in our course was rolling,hilly to right and left; crossed several dry branches at the distance of 5 milesfrom the N. fork; arrived in view of the main Canadian, on a high commanding hillor bluff, which overlooks this stream; it is situated about three-quarters of amile from the river, and is near 200 feet perpendicular, containing large massesof red sandstone, in horizontal layers. Course W. for half a mile, at which pointwe forded the main branch of the Canadian; its direction here is from W.; it isabout 210 yards in width, the color of its water corresponding with that on theN. fork; the banks are very low


generally at and near the point where we struck it, composed of fine sand andclay, of a reddish cast. This river, like the Missouri, appears to be wearingaway its banks continually, so that the color of the water is affected by it,partaking of the color of the banks of the stream. At this season it is only from2#189; to 3 feet in depth; soil in valley about this point very rich, loose, andmellow, and, similar to that on the N. fork, is of a dark reddish brownappearance. The mouth of the S. fork of the Canadian was about 1 mile above thepoint where we forded the main stream; at its mouth it is about 60 yards wide;color of water, &c. same. [84]

Course: C. to P. S. 75 E.
Distance from one point to another: 11#189;
Total distance from qr. line: 303#189;

     December 5, 1828. The valley of the Canadian, or rather the bottom land, is from 1#189; to 2 milesin width. There is a range of hills, probably 150 or 200 feet in height,containing large masses of sandstone. We ascended the ridge, which approachesnear the river at this point; it continues to the S. fork, and forms a bluff onits eastern side. On this ridge we continued for 1 mile; this ridge is mostlycovered with post oak; from this we descended into a valley, the direction ofwhich is W. from the S. fork; it is surrounded with high, craggy hills; in thisvalley there is an extensive marsh, probably three-quarters of a mile indiameter, completely covered with a kind of flag; there was a range of hills onthe right and left of course; about 1#189; miles from this marsh, another valleywas crossed, in which ran a creek from the E. winding round some hills, andpassing it in front; passed up the S. side of this creek, leaving the hills onour right, with but little timber upon them, and at 1#189; miles from the pointwhere we struck it, crossed over to the oppositeside, (N.) high hills to the left; passed between the ridge and a fork of thecreek just mentioned, the S. fork running towards the S. E. This latter rangecontinued on left for many miles, but at 2 miles' distance from the last point wepassed over a ridge not so much elevated, and is prairie, and which extends to P.on a branch of a creek we last crossed; from this point the country is hilly inall directions; on the summits and sides of all these hills there is a largequantity of sandstone rocks; the soil to-day variable, in the valleys generallygood, mixed with sand; the timber, both on the high and low grounds, is the sameas has been mentioned.


Course: P. to Q. N.E. by E.
Distance from one point to another: 23
Total distance from qr. line: 326#189;

     December 6, 1828. Proceeded up to the headwaters of the small creek mentioned; passed alternately through timber andprairie, the latter of small extent. Soil middling, in some places pretty good; arange of hills 1 mile to the left; the whole distance on the right the hills wereat a greater distance; they are not so high as those passed over on the 5th; fromthe head waters of this creek, which is distant from P 5 miles, descended into avalley 1#189; miles in width, mostly prairie; near the head, and for 3 or 4miles down it, high sandstone hills on each side, timbered; 200 feet in height;thevalley, at the distance of 5 or 6 miles from its head, becomes timbered, itscourse being E. N. E.; mostly post oak, black oak, and some hickory, though veryscarce for some distance. A creek puts down this valley, which increases aftercontinuing 5 or 6 miles of its course. Some pine was met with on the sides of thehills, descending to the valley on the N. side; the hills on the left, 6 or 7miles from the head of the valley, break off to the main Canadian; crossed,during our course, the creek in the valley three times at different points, thelast 8 miles from (head of the valley) it. About 1#189; miles from this pointcrossed a branch running S. by E. to N. by W., joining the former before enteringthe Canadian. Country rolling, soil variable, not good; 3 miles from last branchenter prairie; hills without timber, on right of course, half a mile distant; 3miles to another branch, course from S. to N.; about this creek the soil is rich,country rather broken; crossed and proceeded over a rolling country; soilgenerally good, mixed, as usual, with a great portion of sand; timbered with postoak, until it approaches the river, then black oak, &c.; about 1 mile belowwhere we struck the Canadian is a creek from the N., at point Q; just below this,on the river, there is a large cane brake; from this down, and on the Arkansasand Neosho, for some distance N., is common; soil of an excellent quality.

Course: Q. to R.
Distance from one point to another: 13
Total distance from qr. line: 339½

     Dec. 7, 1828.Ascended a rocky hill from point QN. E. on the E. side of creek; on arriving at its summit, continued in aneasterly direction for 1 mile; at this point, course changed to N. E.; descendedthe hill and crossed a ravine for 2 miles; the course then E, for 1#189; miles,then N. for the same distance, N. E. for 1#189; miles; crossed several ravines,the whole of country for same distance on course being hilly and rocky; these arethe hills of the main Canadian; lands poor; on passing into a valley we perceivedthe Arkansas to the E. and S. E.; an extensive valley and prairie to S.


for 2 miles; it is on course a rolling timbered country; touched upon a. smallcreek running to E.; at the distance of 3 miles from the top of hill struck theArkansas river, course of it at this point S. E.; we passed up the banks of theriver 3 miles, through cane brake, &c. for 3 miles, in order to find afording place, as the shore at the first point at which we struck the stream wasquicksand; the bottom land not of any great width; the whole distance from Q to Ris over high rocky hills of sandstone, which border on the Canadian river on theN., and the Arkansas on the E.; the S. margin of the former river is of muchgreater width than that on the western side of the former, near the mouth of theCanadian; lands on the bottom of both streams very rich; the Arkansas at thispoint is 600 yards wide, but at this season the greatest part of the channel issand bar, owing to the low state of the water; there are some high hills betweenthe Canadian and Arkansas rivers, doubtless the dividing ridge between thosewaters.

Course: R. to S. at Salt Works on the Illinois. N. 50 E.
Distance from one point to another: 16
Total distance from qr. line: 355#189;

     Dec. 8, 1828. Continued from point R. along thesides of hills in a N. W.direction for 3 miles; these run close to the river; from thence into a bottom 3or 400 yards in width, of cane generally, and timber common to the margins of theArkansas; crossed this river 1#189; miles below the mouth of the Canadian;coursechanged N. through cane brake for 3 miles, heavy timbered, and rich lands, onrising to the high lands back; course N. E. for #189; mile, crossed a creek fromE. by N. to W. by S.; there are some hills bordering on this branch; where wecrossed, it forked. From this the country was rolling, the soil is good; at 21/smiles from creek crossed the Illinois, which is about 50 or 60 yards wide; acreek empties into it at this point from the S. E.; the water of this river isclear, its course from N. to S. over a beautiful bed of gravel; course N. 75 E.;rich bottom for 2#189; miles, well timbered; on leaving this we entered aprairie, a ridge of hills on right and left, approaching and receding fromcourse, untilwe arrived at the Salt Works on the Illinois; [85] these hills encompass thevalleyof the Illinois on the N., and are from 150 to 200 feet in height, very rocky(sandstone) and timbered; there is a range of hills also on the S. side of theriver. At the Salt Works there is a creek running to the waters of the Illinoisfrom the hills in a N. W. course; these works are, or are said to have been, veryproductive; the water has a very saline taste.


Course: on. N. 42 W.
Disstance from one point to another:
Total distance from qr. line:

     Passed up the creek 1 mile, and ascended a hillof sandstone in large and smallfragments; from the summit our course was nearly level for 5 or 6 miles, buthilly to left near the Arkansas, which is distant 5 or 6 miles; timber heremostly of post oak and black jack, lands poor, distant 6 or 7 miles from the Saltworks; descended and crossed a creek running to left. [86] This is a beautifulrunning stream, passing over a smooth bed of sandstone which is in an inclinedposition, wanting 7 or 8°; to its being perpendicular to the surface; thisrock isabout 30 yards in width; crossing over it, we entered prairie on the N. side ofcreek; from this we ascended a long but gradual rise through poor post oak androcky lands, until we arrived within 3 miles of Cantonment Gibson. Here wedescended from a high rocky hill into a valley down which runs another creek fromthe N., which is distant from Gibson 2 miles; [87] small prairie between the footof the hill and the creek on the S. side; lands very rich, near the creek timber;after crossing there is prairie from this point to the Cantonment on course.From this point, viz. Cantonment Gibson, the course pursued on our return was thesame as that passed over on the route of the party to the Canadian, until wearrived at the Osage Agency, where we crossed the Neosho, and took the directroute to Harmony Mission on the Osage, 70 miles from the Agency. The courses wereas follows:

Course: the State line of Missouri. N. 80 E.
Distance from one point to another:
Total distance from qr. line:

     From the Agency [88] to Harmony Mission, afterleaving the margin of the Neosho,passed through a nearly level country (prairie) except where interrupted by thetimber of the small tributaries of the Neosho and Osage; good soil for 8 or 10miles, when we crossed a small creek with a little timber on its banks, runningfrom N. to S. into another about 1 mile below to the right, which turned withoutcourse, and which has also on its banks a little timber; from this we continuedover the same kind of prairie as before, and at the distance of 12 miles from theAgency crossed "Walnut creek," running from N. to S., and joining a branch onright, about 1 mile distant, continuing 4 miles to another over a prairie similarto the foregoing, 2 miles to a creek running from N. to S. like the former; theseenter one over the head waters of which we passed, its course being appar-


ently from N. E. to S. W., high up on these streams, near the head waters,verylittle timber is met with, the country being mostly prairie, soil varying; thisprairie has been either level or gently rolling; to the left, at some distanceoff, the country appeared to be more rolling than at any point of course, but notimber; on our right, to creek, quite level; beyond, or on the S. side of thecreek, wherever we had a view of the country, it presented the same appearance asthat to the north. After passing the head waters mentioned, the course changed N.E. 3 or 4 miles, rising a very gentle ascent to the dividing ridge between theNeosho and Osage rivers; at highest point of this ridge but little timber is insight, and that at great distance from course, distance 3 or 4 miles to the headwaters of the "Manitau," [89] the course of which is from S. W. to N. E. at thispoint; some timber below where we crossed it; country here rather rolling; fromthis we continued on to the State line, over a rolling prairie, meeting on ourroute with considerable quantities of limestone, of an earthy appearancegenerally, on the rise from little brooks and drains of the country; the creekwhich we crossed changes its direction with the course pursued for some distance,then changed once more to the S. E.


1. Barnes, Lela, "Journal of Isaac McCoy for the Exploring Expedition of 1828,"in The Kansas Historical Quarterly, v. V (1938), pp. 227-277.
2. Isaac McCoy Manuscripts, Kansas State Historical Society. These are the onlyentries in McCoy's journal for the period of interest.
3. That is, the Chickasaw and the Choctaw. Luther Blake and the Creeks hadarrived in Saint Louis about August 14.-Barnes, "McCoy's Journal, 1828," loc.cit., p. 237.
4. John B. Duncan, subagent for the Chickasaw, and D. w. Haley, subagent for theChoctaw.
5. George Hancock Kennerly (1790-1867) was born in Fincastle, Botetourt county,Va., the son of Samuel Kennerly and Mary Hancock. He came to Saint Louis duringthe War of 1812 and was appointed a lieutenant in the regular army. Later he andhis brother James held the contract as sutlers to Jefferson Barracks. In 1815 hemarried Alzire, a daughter of Col. Pierre Menard.-Billon, Frederic L., Annalsof St. Louis in Its Territorial Days From 1804 to 1821 (Saint Louis, 1888),pp. 266-268.
6. Chandonois had been the interpreter of the trip from which McCoy had justreturned. -Barnes, "McCoy's Journal, 1828," pp. 284, 240, 256, 261, 270.
7. Luther Blake.
8. On his arrival in July he had lodged at Brown's which he reported variously asten, thirteen, and twelve miles from town.-Barnes, "McCoy's Journal, 1828," pp.235, 240, 264.
9. Taylor's was on the Boonslick road 35 miles west of Saint Charles.-Wetmore,Alphonso, Gazetteer of the State of Missouri (Saint Louis, 1837), p.269.
10. George P. Todson (or Todsen) was surgeon to this expedition. His contributionto the record consists of the following letter (Office of Indian Affairs,National Archives):

St Louis Aug. 25th 1828
On the 12th July I had the honor of reporting to the War Dept. my arrival in St.Louis.The Rev. Mr McCoy treasurer of the exploring party reached St. Louis with 7or 8 Indians a a short time after, and strong hopes were entertained that theChickasaws and Creek Indians would soon follow, when, to the great disappointmentof M, a report spread that the Chickssaws, influenced and misled by some hostile& intriguing persons, had relinquished their intention immediately to proceedon the expedition, & had postponed their departure for the object. in viewtill next March. Gen. Clark immediately dispatched a person with instructions toproceed to those Indians and to endeavour to prevail on them to proceed withoutdelay to St. Louis to join the rest of the party-but the messenger returnedwithout the Indians, and confirmed by his report the fact of their refusal toproceed with the party till next March. A day or two before the return of themessenger, Mr Blake Indian Agent arrived with a few Creek Indians, and on hearingthe result of the previous mission, expressed a hope of yet succeeding by hispersonal efforts to induce them to join the party at St. Louis.
Mr. Blake, accordingly, after a conference with Gen. Clark on the subject lefthere a few days since for the object in view and is expected to return in thecourse of three or four weeks.- The Rev. Mr McCoy influenced by an apprehensionthat the delay caused by awaiting the arrival of the Chickasaws, an event, underall the existing circumstances, uncertain, might create feelings of discontentand even opposition to the expedition among those Indians which he had broughtwith him, having obtained their assent by his promise to terminate the excursionat a certain time, and to return them to their families-thought it advisable toproceed with them on the expedition and did so on the 21st inst. He expressed tome a wish that I would accompany his small party, which I assured him I was readyto do, if Gen Clark would give me orders & instructions to that effect. Istated to him that I was directed by the war Dept. to report myself to Gen Clarksuperintendent of Indian affairs, and therefore considered myself to [be]entirely confined to the decision he Gen. Clark, should make on the subject. Icalled immediately on Gen. Clark, communicated to him the wish of Mr McCoy, andrequested him, if he desired me to proceed with the party of McCoy, to furnish mewith written instructions to that effect. He replied that he was not authorizedto direct me to proceed with this small party and could therefore give noinstructions on the subject.- Capt. Kennerly the gentleman appointed to conductthe party remains here waiting for the arrival of the other Indians.- I beg leaveto solicit further instructions from the Department in the event of the neararrival of the Chickasaw Indians.- Gen. Clark, to whom, in obedience to myinstructions from the Dept. I presented my account for travelling expenses fromWashington to St. Louis, has directed me to defer the settlement thereof till myreturn to Washington. In addition to the sum of 200 Dollars received inWashington for my traveling expenses it has been necessary to draw on the Rev. MrMcCoy treasurer, the sum of One Hundred Dollars for defraying my expenses herefor which I have given Duplicate receipts.
I have the honor to remain, Sir,
Very respectfully.
Your most obedient servant Geo. P. Todsen
The Secretary of War, Washington

11. Loutre Lick or Van Ribber's was 68 miles west of Saint Charles on theBoonslick road.
Wetmore, Gazetteer of Missouri, p. 269.
12. Isaac Van Bibber was born in Greenbriar county, Virginia, in 1771, the son ofthat Isaac Van Bibber who was killed at Point Pleasant in 1774. He was adoptedand reared by Daniel Boone, came to Missouri with Nathan Boons in 1800, settledat Loutre Lick in 1815, and died in 1836.-Bryan, William S., and Rose, Robert, AHistory of the Pioneer Families of Missouri (Saint Louis, 1876), p.297.
13. McMurtry's in Nine-Mile Prairie, was 7 miles beyond Van Bibber's.-Wetmore,Gazeteer of Missouri, p. 269.
14. He died four or five days later.-McCoy, Isaac, History of Baptist IndianMissions (Washington and New York, 1840), p. 350.
7. Luther Blake.
8. On his arrival in July he had lodged at Brown's which he reported variously asten, thirteen, and twelve miles from town.-Barnes, "McCoy's Journal, 1828," pp.235, 240, 264.
9. Taylor's was on the Boonslick road 35 miles west of Saint Charles.-Wetmore,Alphonso, Gazetteer of the State of Missouri (Saint Louis, 1837), p.269.
10. George P. Todson (or Todsen) was surgeon to this expedition. His contributionto the record consists of the following letter (Office of Indian Affairs,National Archives):

St Louis Aug. 25th 1828
On the 12th July I had the honor of reporting to the War Dept. my arrival in St.Louis.The Rev. Mr McCoy treasurer of the exploring party reached St. Louis with 7or 8 Indians a a short time after, and strong hopes were entertained that theChickasaws and Creek Indians would soon follow, when, to the great disappointmentof M, a report spread that the Chickssaws, influenced and misled by some hostile& intriguing persons, had relinquished their intention immediately to proceedon the expedition, & had postponed their departure for the object in viewtill next March. Gen. Clark immediately dispatched a person with instructions toproceed to those Indians and to endeavour to prevail on them to proceed withoutdelay to St. Louis to join the rest of the party-but the messenger returnedwithout the Indians, and confirmed by his report the fact of their refusal toproceed with the party till next March. A day or two before the return of themessenger, Mr Blake Indian Agent arrived with a few Creek Indians, and on hearingthe result of the previous mission, expressed a hope of yet succeeding by hispersonal efforts to induce them to join the party at St. Louis.
Mr. Blake, accordingly, after a conference with Gen. Clark on the subject lefthere a few days since for the object in view and is expected to return in thecourse of three or four weeks.- The Rev. Mr McCoy influenced by an apprehensionthat the delay caused by awaiting the arrival of the Chickasaws, an event, underall the existing circumstances, uncertain, might create feelings of discontentand even opposition to the expedition among those Indians which he had broughtwith him, having obtained their assent by his promise to terminate the excursionat a certain time, and to return them to their families-thought it advisable toproceed with them on the
11. Loutre Lick or Van Bibber's was 68 miles west of Saint Charles on theBoonslick road. Wetmore, Gazetteer of Missouri, p. 269.
12. Isaac Van Bibber was born in Greenbrier county, Virginia, in 1771, the son ofthat Isaac Van Bibber who was killed at Point Pleasant in 1774. He was adoptedand reared by Daniel Boone, came to Missouri with Nathan Boone in 1800, settledat Loutre Lick in 1815, Missouri and died in 1836.-Bryan, William S., and Rose,Robert, A History of the Pioneer Families of Missouri (Saint Louis,1876)
13. McMurtry's in Nine Mile Prairie, was 7 miles beyond Van Bibber's.-Wetmore,Gazetteer of Missouri, p. 269.
14. He died four or five days later.-McCoy, Isaac, History of Baptist IndianMissions (Washington and New York, 1840), p. 350.
15. Smith's was 10 miles west of Arrow Rock.-Wetmore, Gazetteer ofMissouri, p. 269.
16. Rennick's was 12 miles west of Lexington.-Ibid.
17. Independence was now one year old.
18. From Independence McCoy wrote the following letter to his son Calvin (McCoyMSS., Kansas State Historical Society)

Independence, 280 miles west of St. Louis, Nov. 2d1828.
My dear Son Calvin
I went on tour of 49 days with the Potawatomies & Ottawas, and sent them homewell pleased with the country, and the people. The Chickasaws & Choctawsreached St. Louis the 13th Oct. and they with the Creeks who had previouslyarrived are thus far on their way into the western wilderness. I left St. Louisthe 22d Oct. Am now about leaving the white settlements. Our whole company amountto 41 persons. We shall not go so far north and west as I did on my late tour,but shall go farther south. Shall dismiss the Indians somewhere onArkansas river, and perhaps early in December. I shall then be about 500 milesfrom St. Louis to which place I expect to return by land.
I am favoured with health, and am encouraged to hope that I shall beinstrumental in promoting the welfare of the Indians, and in providing places ofuseful-benevolent labour for my dear children.
I trust you-your sisters, and your mother and all your brothers & sistersfrom Carey have gotten together in Ohio or Kentucky. I feel great anxiety onaccount of you all-not knowing where to think you all are. I pray God to blessyou all wherever you all maybe. Try to be virtuous & wise, my dear son. Benot uneasy about me- The Lord is so kind to me in these lands of strangers that Iam greatly comforted in relation to you all.
I hope to get to your embraces about the 1st Jan'y. Should I bear that mother& others have left Carey, I shall not return by Carey but go direct to them.Write me to St. Louis till the 10th Deer.
I am in haste, but Affectionately Your father
Isaac McCoy

Dear Rice & Josephus
Forward this- I sent you $200. not long since. Hope we shall do well in ourIndian business. Do endeavour to comfort your good mother. I have deposited myaccounts with James Kennedy, St. Louis. I carry with me a duplicate of thesame.

[Postmark] Independence 6 Nov 1828
[Addressed] Mr. Rice McCoy
Fayette County,

19. Col. Levi Colbert, chief of the Chickasaw. He died in 1834 while on his wayto Washington with a delegation from his tribe.
20. The three documents in this section are reproduced from the McCoy MSS.,Kansas State Historical Society. The first and third were printed, with coveringdocuments, in House of Representatives Report No. 87, 20 Cong., 2Sess.
21. Of the documents listed only Nos. 1, 4 and 6 have survived. The NationalArchives and the clerk of the House of Representatives report that the map is notto be found. McCoy drew the map July 29-August 5 ; it was 2 feet, 7 inches, by 3feet (Barnes, "McCoy's Journal, 1828," pp. 235, 236). The nearest period map forthe Indian country is probably that accompanying House of RepresentativesReport No. 474 (1834), 23 Cong, 1 Sess. (Ser. No. 263.) This printed map mayhave been based on McCoy's manuscript map (see the Report, p. 76; alsoHenry R. Wagner's The Plains and the Rookies, rev. and ext. by Charles L.Camp [19371, No. 49).
22. T. L. McKenney to McCoy, June 10, 1828, in Barnes, "McCoy's Journal, 1828,"pp. 227, 228.
23. Clark's instructions are contained in the following letter in the McCoyCollection of the Kansas State Historical Society:

Office of Superintendent of Indian Affairs
St. Louis October 17th 1828.
I have been advised by the War Department of your appointment as Treasurer to theparty of Creeks, Choctaws & Chickasaws about to explore the country west ofthe Missouri State.
The party consists of Capt George H. Kennerly as Leader,-yourself as Treasurer,Doctor Todson as Physician;-Col. Duncan leads the Chickasaws, 12 in number,accompanied by Messrs. Lincure, Davis & King; & Benj Love Interpreter.Col. Haley has charge of the Choctaws consisting of 4 chiefs Mr. Pytchlynne &Mr. Noel as Interpreter. Judge L. Blake has charge of the Creeks, 3 in number,with Harper Lovett as Interpreter.-Lieut Hood as Topographist, & Mr. Bell asassistant.
The outfit for the expedition, has been furnished under my directions, and theamt. for which, will be handed to you, approved by me. When the objects of theexpedition shall have been accomplished it will be left to the discretion ofCapt. Kennerly & yourself to make the best disposition of the propertybelonging to the outfit.
I have no information as to compensation to any of the party, except thoseengaged as hired men at this place & that will be furnished you by Capt.Kennerly. It is desireable that the Indians should be furnished with the means ofmaking themselves comfortable on their journey home, after exploring the countrypointed out to Capt. Kennerly.
In the objects of expenditure, & the limits of it, you will of course, begoverned by your instructions, and knowledge of the general design of theGovernment in making the expedition,-having reference to the comfort &content of the Indians, and amount of the appropriation made to cover theexpenses of the undertaking.
Entertaining a high opinion of your sagacity & powers of observation, it isdesireable that you should keep a Journal of the route, that the Government mayhave the benefit of your views in relation to the Country.
I have the honor to be Sir
Very respectfully Yr obt. Servt.
Wm Clark

[Addressed] The Revd.
Isaac McCoy
Treasurer to the Exploring party of Chickasaws, Choctaws &c. Present.
24. "I had reason to suppose that Captain Kennerly would say little more thanwould be reported by the topographists; and their report, I knew, wouldnecessarily not be such a condensed statement, relative to the suitableness ofthe country for settlement, as the case demanded. I therefore made a formalreport, although it was not really my province to do so. This, I had reason tosuppose, was unexpected by some connected with the matter; and Colonel McKenneyhimself, who was at the head of Indian affairs, intimated that it was informal. Inevertheless felt the necessity of the measure. . . ."-McCoy, History ofBaptist Indian Missions, p. 871.
25. Since the journey from Carey in Michigan to Saint Louis and the first tourwest have been reported in detail in Barnes, "McCoy's Journal, 1828," pp.227-277, it is not necessary to annotate the summary in this document. Anothersummary, longer than the present one, will be found in McCoy, History ofBaptist Indian Missions, pp. 334-349.
26. Noel Mongrain (see Barnes, "McCoy's Journal, 1828," pp. 240, 244 ff.).27. According to his journal McCoy reached Saint Louis on October 7 (Barnes,"McCoy's Journal, 1828," p. 264).
28. Cf. the account of this tour in McCoy's History of Baptist Indian Missions,pp. 349-369.
29. McCoy crossed the state in a small dearborn wagon.-Ibid., p. 350.30. See the entry for October 24 in McCoys journal, above.
31. Maj. John Dougherty, U. S. Indian agent at Fort Leavenworth.-McCoy,History of Baptist Indian. Missions, p. 351.
32. For Kennedy see Footnote 5, above, and for Todson, Footnote 10. WashingtonHood (1808-1840) was born in Philadelphia, the son of John McClellan Hood andEliza Forebaugh. He was commissioned second lieutenant in 1827 (Dictionary ofAmerican Biography, v. IX, pp. 194, 195). Since John Bell is named asassistant to Lieutenant Hood, it is clear that he must not be confused with Capt.John R. Bell of Long's expedition.
33. The Chickasaw are named in Footnote 51, below. The other white men intheir party were Garland Lincecum, James Davis, and William D. King (Foreman,Grant, Indians & Pioneers [1930], p. 309, Footnote 32). The Choctaw wereTuppenhoma (chief), Daniel Nail (interpreter), Peter Pitchlynn, Captain Kincade,Capt. Red Dog, and Captain Auittatomas (ibid., pp. 309, 810, Footnote 83).For the Creek see Footnote 50, below.
34. The interpreter was Noel Mongrain (McCoy, History of Baptist IndianMissions, p. 351); see, also, Footnote 26, above. The negro belonged to LeviColbert (McCoy, History, p. 349).
35. "We had proceeded about five miles, when, riding briskly over the prairie toprevent a pack horse from escaping, my horse fell with me, and rolled on to myfoot and leg. I was a good deal injured on the side that had been dashed on theearth, but was able after a while to resume my journey, though I suffered muchpain for several days. At camp, the doctor bled me pretty freely. . .."-Ibid., p. 352.
36. They reached the Osage on November 11. Ibid.
37. At this point McCoy wrote the following note to his wife (McCoy MSS., KansasState Historical Society):
At Camp, Osage river,
about 20 miles west of line of Missouri,
Thursday Nov, 13, 1828.

My Dear Wife
This is the fifth day since we left the Shawanoe village- We have been travellingslowly to the West near the line of Missouri. We shall not go far west. My healthis good, also that of the party. Weather comfortable- I have lately written you& others of the family often- I hope to get home about last of Deer. But Imust stay until the company break to go home.
A man goes in to Harmony Mission by whom I send this
Love to all my Dear babes- Dear children and friends, Keep in good heart- trustin God- good is the Lord & precious- In haste
Affectionately- very affectionately Isaac McCoy

Sons Rice & Josephus forward this.
[Postmark] Independence Mo
4 Dec. 1828.
[Addressed] Mr. Rice McCoy
Fayette County,
88. For detail of travel for the remainder of this tour, see the report of Hoodand Bell, below. McCoy's statement is misleading because the party struck theNeosho not merely 14 miles west of the Osage crossing but also more than 70 milessouth.
39. In his History of Baptist Indian Missions (p. 360) McCoy mentionedmeeting John F. Hamtramck, Osage agent, and Benton Pixley, missionary.
40. From the Osage villages McCoy wrote the following letter to his son-in-law(McCoy MSS., Kansas State Historical Society):Nov. 18, 1828.
Dear Lykins
I have proceeded on this tour from Missouri river southwardly, a few miles westof the state of Missouri, as far as Neosho river, where the Osages generallyreside. I am now in their villages, 30 miles west of Missouri state, 110 milessouth of the mouth of Kanzas river, and as the road runs about 370 miles from St.Louis. We are waiting here for the assembling of the Osages to a friendly talk,and expect to proceed tomorrow. We have good weather, & good health- thus farour present company of Indians do not like the country. We shall proceedsouthwardly to the Canadian Fork of Arkansaw, when we shall quit this country-and return depends on the disposition of these Indians and the weather. I fear itwill be January before I can see you and others of my dear family.
I wrote your mother the other day from Osage river. I am as you may supposeexceedingly desirous to see you all- Could I know that you are all comfortablysituated it would lessen my sorrows greatly. I pray that it may be so- I willhope it is so.
I almost forgot to say that on the 9th inst when galloping my horse to turnanother into the way my horse fell with me on a smooth burnt prairie, and rolledon to my left foot and leg above the knee-dashing me severely on my left arm. Myleft limbs & side were considerably injured. I was bled in my arm. I havecontinued travelling, but am still lame in my left arm & shoulder and leg. Mytour may be said to be pleasant thus far.
Regards to my dear companion in life, and to all our dear children.
Affectionately Your father
Isaac McCoy

Johnston Lykins
My dear boys will forward this- The season is so far past, that for this &other reasons we shall on this tour, see far less of the country than I expectedRice & Josephus. I. M.[Addressed] Mr. Josephus McCoy
Fayette County,
41. "On the 20th, we pitched our tents near the village of the Chief called WhiteHair. A large long fire of logs was made, at which our company was joined incouncil by about twenty Osage chiefs, and principal men. The usual ceremonies ofshaking hands, smoking, and speech making, were entered upon, and continued untilnight, when all parties agreeing that peace speeches ought not to be made in thedark, we adjourned till the following day.
"That night the coldness of the weather increased to severity. Our encampment wasin a narrow streak of timber, with many miles of woodless plain on both sides.The wind was high, with snow falling, and our situation became veryuncomfortable. The weather was so severe on the following day, that it was latebefore the council convened. In the mean time, we were invited to a feast ofboiled buffalo meat, in the house of the chief Belle Ouizo. In the absence ofchairs, we all became seated on the floor, when bowls of boiled meat were placedbefore us, and each used his own knife and his own fingers. Immediately on thecompletion of this, we were taken to the house of the chief, White Hair, topartake of similar hospitality, the eatables being the same in kind and cookery."On account of the severity of the weather, our council was completed in thehouse of the chief, White Hair. The result was a reciprocity of good feelings andfair speeches. -McCoy, History of Baptist Missions, pp. 355-357.
42. "Through the advice of Mr. Haley, which turned out to be rather unseasonable,the Choctaws intimated a desire to obtain one of these dressed scalps, to carrywith them, as a matter of curiosity. With some ceremony, an Osage warrior cameforward in council, and presented the principal Choctaw chief, with the scalp ofa Pawnee. The acceptance was followed by a brief speech in behalf of the Osagenation, in which the orator argued that, as the Choctaws had accepted of a scalpat the hands of the former, which they had taken from an enemy, the Choctaws, asa nation, were bound by the customs of Indians to espouse their interests, andthat the Osages would henceforward understand that the Choctaws, about to becometheir neighbours, would also become their allies in war. This turn of the affairwas as unwelcome as it was unexpected to the Choctaws, who made noreply."-Ibid., pp. 857, 558.
43. McCoy gave much space in his book to Osage customs andfolklore.-Ibid., pp. 855-865.
44. Accompanied by Belle Oiseau, "distinguished [Osage] chief," the party leftthe Osage villages on November 22.-Ibid., p. 861.
45. Mongrain returned home from Fort Gibson.--Ibid., p. 366.
46. About 1,500 Creeks (the McIntosh division) had lately arrived.-Ibid.,pp. 365, 866
47. They arrived at this point on November 26.-Ibid., p. 365.
48. See the letter from the Chickasaw delegation, p. 423.
49. They were once more in white Hair's village on the night of December 14(McCoy, History of Baptist Indian Missions, p. 869).
"COLUMBUS,January 22, 1829.

We have written on to you byMr. Blake, who carried us on as an exploring party to examine the country west ofthe Mississippi. We have travelled a great way with Mr. Blake, and are glad tofind him our friend, who has studied our interest, and has been friendly insupplying our wants. We have known him long, and have ever found him a friend toour people, and we had the utmost confidence in our great Father when heappointed Mr. Blake to accompany us. We love him, and we wish our great Father toappoint him to carry our people west of the Mississippi. We have now arrivedamong our people, and given them the talk, and they are willing to go with Mr.Blake, for we have known him long, and he has always been our friend, and thefriend of our people. We know he would take care of our women and orphanchildren, and they have confidence in [him] more than they have in strangers. Ourgreat Father has appointed the best man to go with his children (because theyknew him, and have not been deceived in him.) We like the country, and want ourgreat Father to appoint him to go with our people and settle the country that ourgreat Father has given us on the west of the Mississippi. When we arrived home, agreat many of our friends came to see us, and we told them it was a fine country,a plenty of buffalo, elk, deer, bear, and turkeys, and that your red childrenshould remove there; and they have listened to our talk, and are willing to go,if our friend, Mr. Blake, will go with us, and see us justice done. We, thedelegation, arrived at the Chatahoochie in good health.
"I certify that this is an exact representation of the Chiefs, as interpreted tome, in the absence of any person but themselves. "N. F. COLLINS."

(House of Representatives Report No. 87, 20 Cong., 2 Sess., p. 5.)
51. Twelve names were attached to this letter. The other Chickasaw were at thismoment away hunting buffalo (McCoy, History of Baptist Indian Missions, p.367). We find the following signatures: Levi Colbert, Ish-te-ma-tah-ka, Emmubba,Im-ma-tah-ish-to, Ah-torcowah, Ish-ta-yah-tubba, Bah-kah-tubba, Thos. Sealy,Isaac Love, Elapa-Umba, C. Colbert, J. McLish.
52. The land was acquired eight vears later; for a discussion see NeuhoffDorothy, ^The Platte Purchase," Washington University Studies, v. XI,Humanistic series, No. 2 (1924), pp. 307-840.
53. A chief of the Little Osage, named in the treaty of 1825.
54. See Dr. Kate Gregg's forthcoming book to be entitled "The Road to Santa Fe"(Norman, University of Oklahoma Press).
55. The United States instituted a convoy system in 1829.
56. Among the McCoy MSS. ("Letters," v. 16) in the Kansas State HistoricalSociety is a note that clearly credits this plan to A. P. Chouteau; it isentitled "Mem. Opinion of A. P. Chouteau at both St. Louis do Fort Gibson, Dec.1, 1828." It reads as follows: "A judicious method of settling disputes betweenOsages, and Camanches do other Indians of the west, would be to send a delegationfrom Osages to them. Chouteau could speak to the latter.-is acquainted with them-One company would be a sufficient guard- with two light field pieces- Spring theproper time- Leave Missouri State at say Kansas river, do turn round south viaArkansas.- Time necessary, 4 or b months- Would meet one party- Then send toanother &c--- Would likely meet some ten days journey west of MissouriState might then go farther or send for them as the case would be."
57. Chouteau, apparently.
58. House of Representatives Report No. 87, 20 Cong., 2 Sess., pp.24-48.
59. A. P. Chouteau's post, generally called the Grand Saline (see Footnote74).
60. There were probably two maps: McCoy's (see Footnote 21) and one made by thetopographers. Neither has been found.
61. According to McCoy (p. 416, above) the party left the camp on the Missouriline on November 8.
62. Brush creek, in the extreme northeastern comer of present Johnson county,Kansas.
63. Indian creek.
64. The topographers must have meant the ridge between Tomahawk, a western branchof Big Blue, and the latter. Little Blue lies in Missouri to the east of BigBlue; the party is clearly to the west of the latter stream.
65. This mileage total is incorrect. It should read 51 #189; To correctsucceeding mileage totals, always add ten.
66. According to McCoy they crossed the Osage or Marais des Cygnes river about 20miles west of the Missouri line (see Footnote 37). That figure, with Hood'smileage, would indicate a crossing in the neighborhood of present Osawatomie,Miami county.
69. The Osage agency was then on the right (west) bank of the Neosho a littleabove the present town of Erie.
70. The party remained four days in this neighborhood. White Hair's village wason the right (west) bank of the Neosho a few miles below present Erie.
67. Probably Big creek entering the Neosho from the left (east) above presentShaw, Neosho county.
68. Probably Canville creek entering the Neosho from the left below presentShaw.
71. Labette creek. Corrupted from La Bete; a French translation which preservesan Osage legend. The party was apparently now traveling down the road from theOsage agency to the Creek agency and Fort Gibson. This camp must have been westor northwest of present Oswego.
72. Cabin creek (as it is now called) enters the Neosho about 12 miles belowpresent Vinita, Okla. The crossing wasp robably made above Little Cabin creek andnear Vinita.
73. This must be Rock creek which enters the Neosho from the right (west) aboutthree miles below Cabin creek.
74. A. P. Chouteau's Grand Saline trading post at the present town of Salina,Mayes county, Okla. (See Footnote 59.)
75. For the salt springs on the Grand or Neosho river see Foreman, Grant,Indians & Pioneers, pp. 61-71.
76. Probably Pryor creek which flows below present Pryor (county seat of Mayescounty) to enter the Neosho from the right (west).
77. Possibly Choteau creek which passes to the north of present Choteau, Mayescounty, to enter the Neosho two or three miles below Pryor creek.
78. Union mission was a little above and opposite to Spring creek which entersthe Neosho from the left (east).
79. Brush creek.
80. The Western Creek agency was housed in buildings bought from A. P. Chouteauin 1827.
81. Coata creek enters the Arkansas almost opposite Bayou Menard.
82. Which now appears on Geological Survey maps as Dirty creek. It enters theArkansas about one or two miles above the Canadian.
83. The first branch was Butler creek; the second, Timberley.
84. By South Fork of Canadian they meant Gaines creek, which enters the Canadianabout six miles above the North Fork. The party was now about 66 miles west ofArkansas, not 48 as McCoy says above (p. 418).
85. For Bean's Salt Works on the Illinois see Foreman, Indians &Pioneers, pp. 67-69.
86. Probably Greenleaf creek.
87. Bayou Menard.
88. On December 14 they were once more at White Hair's village (Footnote 49,above).
89. Marmaton river.

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