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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 Historical Society.

Kansas Historical Quarterly, August 1945ISAAC McCOY in 1828 made two exploring trips into the Indian country. On the first of these, accompanied by an interpreter, he took a party of Pottawatomie and Ottawa Indians to inspect lands west of the Missouri frontier. He left Saint Louis on August 21 and returned October 7. Of the second expedition, which left Saint Louis later in October under the command of Capt. G. H. Kennerly, McCoy was treasurer. This time Chickasaw, Choctaw, and Creek delegations were taken west to the Neosho river and then south to Fort Gibson and the mouth of the Canadian river. McCoy reached Saint Louis the second time on December 24 and the next day started for Washington. Working up his accounts while traveling, he arrived in the capital on January 27, 1829, and two days later addressed to P. B. Porter, Secretary of War, a lengthy report describing his activities, the nature of the country explored, and the value of the lands to be assigned to the Indians. The section of McCoy's journal recording the first of these expeditions has been published. [1] The documents below are concerned with the second. They have been arranged as follows: I, entries from McCoy's journal; II, McCoy's report; III, the reports of Kennerly, Hood, and Bell. A few pertinent letters appear in footnotes.


Oct. 13.
I returned to St. Louis, and found the Southern Indians, so long looked for. They arrived yesterday, Oct. 12. [3]

Oct. 14.
Wherever we find Indians we find a pack of unprincipled whitemen gaping upon them to devour them. We had good reason to believe that such had been among these southern Indians and had occasioned their vexatious delays. It was hoped however that in coming here they would leave such behind them. In this we are disappointed. Duncan & Haley, [4] the former appointed to bring on the Chickasaws 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 second meal they ate began to find fault so foolishly that they and the land lord quarrelled, and they by consent of both parties had left and returned and taken lodgings on board the Steam Boat again.

I soon learnt that there had not been agreement among them on the road. They both had said before and after their arrival that unless they could have the handling of some money they wo'd go back home. They sent for me, pretended they did not care about money themselves, but said the Indians were dissatisfied. I went to see 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 Indians requesting me to place in the hands of Duncan $1000. Duncan hurried me for an answer. 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 of evading a direct denial. I determined not to advance the money. I became disgusted with the conduct of the men. We had no doubt that the Indians were prompted to the demand by the white men. All our party Indians & whites dined at Genl Clark's Wednesday I wrote them a letter, previous to sending it to them Oct. 15. showed to the white men, and Genl Clark & Cap. Kennerly all concurrd with 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 whenever their necessities required. But Duncan was too mean to be relied on. The Indians sent for me & said nothing would satisfy but for me to give Duncan $500. This I determined not to do, knowing that it was virtually the demand of Duncan and not 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 for his 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. I rode 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 a Dearbourn waggon, drawn by two horses and driven by Cap. Kennerly's black man. We reached St. Charles on the north side of Missouri. Before leaving St. Louis the whole of the $10,000 for which I had been authorized to draw was more than exhausted. Genl. Clark, agreably to the regulations of the Sec. War, gave me a Draft for $2,300. more.

It may be supposed that having left my family the 2d July last with the hope of returning to them about this time, I feel not a little anxiety on their account---instead of returning to them, I am just now setting out on another tour in 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 to travel and had been left day before yesterday. He had had the measles, and the exposure of travelling & some imprudencies, had rendered him very ill. We found him in a sad ho[MS. illegible] and under the prescriptions of a wretched Doctor.

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

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

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

Oct. 25.
At 11 took we [sic] Breakfasted at Harrisons, and at night overtook some of our company 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 Cholera Morbus. I took medicine before day, and thro mercy the disease was checked. The Choctaws had partly determined to break off from the company and go direct to their relations on Arkansaw, and Haley who accompanies them, it seems was going with them. He ought to have given information of the fact, this he neglected to do. The Indians spoke of it themselves. They were at length prevailed on to abandon the scheme, and all have consented to keep together, and have agreed to shorten the tour as first marked out north & west. In consequence of these parleys and other strange things none but the two packhorse men of our mess started today.

Oct. 28.
All except the two topographists, surgeon & myself proceeded. Cap. Kennerly went 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 subject of the expedition.

Oct. 29.
I left Franklin with a few others. Most of our company being ahead of us. Crossed Missouri & 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 at Rennicks. [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 of conversation with them. I had also, for similar reason taken Colbert [19] into the 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. We proceeded & overtook the company encamped on the line of the state, near the Shawanoes.


Hon. Peter B. Porter
Secty. of War Sir
In conformity with my Commission to attend an exploring party of Indians west of the Mississippi, authorized by act of Congress passed March, 1828, I proceeded to the performance of the duties assigned me. How far I have succeeded in their accomplishment must be for you to decide on examination of the accompanying documents.

Document, No. 1. Exhibits in detail the disbursement of the funds confided to my trust., Documents Nos. 2 & 3 furnishes vouchers. Document No. 4 contains explanations. Document No. 5 is a map of the country we explored, and extending west to the Rocky mountains, and north beyond what may probably be the limits of Indian 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 my views relative to the settlement of the Indian tribes therein-and the subjects connected therewith which claim the immediate attention of our government. [21]

A history of the tour was to some extent, necessary for the exhibiting clearly of the propriety of some items of expenditure. If in giving this, or if in my remarks, or in the expression of my views relative to measures to be pursued, I have transcended, strictly speaking, the limits of duties as required by my commission, I beg you will attribute it to no motive less worthy than that of a desire to contribute to the information of my government on a subject in which I feel 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. of the Indian exploring expedition west of the Mississippi authorized by act of Congress passed March 1828.

It so happened, (the causes for which are explained in Document No. 6) that most of the costs of conducting the northern Indians occurred seperately from those in relation to the southern. The former were six in number including the interpreter, who was part Potawatomie. The distance they travelled was about equal to the average distance travelled by the southern Indians, and on account of the delay of the latter, the Potawatomies and Ottawas were longer from their homes than was requisite for those of the south. Expenditures on account of the former occurred under my own control. They are distinctly stated in the accounts.

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


formed that from him the party would receive "the necessary detailed instructions for the government of their route and movements." [22] The duties of my appointment not having been particularly pointed out in my instructions, I cheerfully acquiesced in the arrangements of Genl. Clark that Cap. Kennerly, whom he had appointed leader of the party, should control all expenditures subsequently to those occasioned by the northern Indians. Those expenditures are also distinctly stated in the account My business was to pay debts as they occurred, or to purchase by order of Cap. Kennerly. Hence I am accountable only for the disbursement of those funds. [23]

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


their expenses thro. the white settlements. Cap. Kennerly and myself overtook them when a little more than half way through the state, after which time I paid much of the expense of the whole company. Those advances being greater than the nature of the cases would appear to require, merit an explanation.

Before leaving St. Louis the Chickasaws, through Mr Duncan their conductor, asked for $1000. to be placed in the hands of Mr Duncan to be applied to their use on the tour, at his and their discretion. This sum was in addition to $100. I had previously 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 man and horse having been furnished as above stated. I declined advancing the money until Genl. Clark, in order to prevent a more perplexing occurrence, advised me to comply. On compliance with the wishes of the Chickasaws, the Choctaws followed with a similar, though less ungenerous and unnecessary demand.

On parting with the delegations subsequently, additional advances were made to sundry gentlemen to enable them to return to their places. The account shows the amount unaccounted for by them severally, and it is expected that each will report his account without delay. The remarks accompanying the account shows what disposition 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 connected with my appointment to accompany an exploring party of Indians west of the Mississippi, agreeably to act of Congress passed March 1828, that I ask leave respectfully to submit the following report. [24]
That portion of my duties which related to the disbursement of


the appropriation of Congress for purposes of the expedition, is reported on in 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 all possible expedition, to St. Louis and to take with me three Potawatomies & an interpreter. There were at that time in waiting three Ottawas anxious to accompany me on that expedition, and, as the interests of those tribes, and their relation to our country and settlements, were, to a great extent, identified as those of one tribe, I conceived it to be right & within the spirit of my instructions to take them, together with two Potawatomies, and an interpreter, who also was part Indian. [25]

We left Carey, 7 in number, with eight horses, July 2d and reached St. Louis the 16th at which place Dr Todson, surgeon had arrived a few days previously. On the 21st July a man 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 the messenger to the southern Indians returned, with a written communication from a principal Chief of the Chickasaws, informing that, for reasons therein assigned, they had determined to postpone the tour until next March. The Choctaws were expected of course to imitate their example. As the arrangements for the tour, which were already considerably advanced, would sustain damage by so long a delay, it was desireable to complete the excursion the present season, the expedition having been ordered chiefly for -the benefit of the Chickasaws, another messenger was sent to them, who left St. Louis the 18 Aug.

The Potawatomies & Ottawas had not expected to be so long absent from their places as would be necessary to await the issue of these arrangements, nor was it desireable that they should. I therefore obtained permission, in lieu of the expense 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 produce a favourable result in relation to those Indians, or to prevent an unfavourable one, we doubted not that it would receive the approbation of our government.

With our six Indians and two hired hands, I left St. 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 line crosses Osage river. Near that place we took in a half-breed Osage as an interpreter to Osages and Kanzas. [26] The Osages at the village we passed here were 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 southwest across the upper branches of Neosho until we intersected the main stream at a point eighty miles south & one hundred and twenty seven west of the mouth of Kanzas river, and about 25 miles southeast of the road leading from the upper settlements on Missouri to Santa Fe. We then bore northwest until we reached the road which was at a point about sixty miles from Arkansas river, and 140 due west of the state of Missouri. These estimates are made according to measurement on the 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, and travelled along, or near to the Santa Fe road, until we reached a point due south of the upper Kanza village. We then bore north to the village, which is on the south bank of Kanza river, 125 miles on a direct line west of the State of Missouri.

After leaving the Osage village on the river of the same name, we had seen several trails of companies of Indians, some of which had occasioned uneasiness to our Osage interpreter, who supposed they might have been made by war parties of their enemies. But the one which deserved most attention, I found, on close examination had been made by a hunting party and therefore supposed them to have been Kanzas or Osages. On the 18th September we fell in with a Kanza hunter and on the evening of the same day reached his vil lage. Coming in sight of two houses about two miles from the main village the inhabitants became alarmed. Some of the women & children fled to the woods, while a man almost wholly divested of clothing, with his implements of war, came in great haste to a grove which we were entering. I supposed his object was to ascertain who we were. But I soon discovered that it was to secure a couple of horses which were grazing in the wood, and of which we were within 100 paces when he reached them. I sent our interpreter to speak to him, who at once allayed his fears, so that he approached cheerfully and took us by the hand, being in a profuse perspiration from His race for the protection of his horses. He conducted us to water at which


I halted, and sent him forward to inform the main village that I would presently be with them for the purpose of smoking. I was much gratified to hear from him that 16 Pawnees were at the village in counsel with the Kanza. Greatly to my disappointment, however when I came into the assembly of the Kanzas, I ascertained that all the Pawnees except three had hastily left on our approach. These three who, I suppose, had been left to ascertain the object of our visit were in haste to be gone and could only be detained long enough for me to give them a brief talk, and a liberal present of tobacco, to which they replied in the usual complimentary way. Our interview with the 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 the river. My time was so far consumed that I deemed it unadvisable to incur the delay that would be occasioned by crossing on rafts. I therefore proceeded eastwardly near to the southern limits of the Kanzas' lands, and came down to the Shawanoe villages recently settled near the mouth of Kanzas river on the Missouri. Here our Indians were again received with much friend ship. I had the satisfaction to see that these Shawanoes were erecting neat hewed log cabins, and in other respects preparing for their future comfort. Our Indians remained with them the greater part of two days, and were by them encouraged to settle in the country and even invited to settle near them.

We had found Elk, Deer & Bear plenty, and had seen a few Antelopes. Our Indians were delighted with the abundance of game, but regretted that, contrary to our former expectation, we had not fallen in with Buffalos. Our Osage interpreter supposed that we had been within a few miles 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 in with Pawnee war parties. We afterwards ascertained that we had been within 75 miles of the place where the last attack of the Pawnees was made on the first party defeated on the Santa Fe road, which happened in September while we were in that country.

I was my own pilot, and varied our course in travelling as appearances indicated would best enable us to become acquainted with the fitness of the country for habitation. There is great similarity in the appearance of all parts of it-that we explored. It is generally a high rolling country, 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 and smaller water courses pass over limestone, and along the larger streams are sometimes seen steep and high cliffs of limestone rocks. The Hill sides are frequently washed until the stone is quite uncovered, in those places it is generally thin flag stone. Bottom land is in width somewhat proportioned to the size of the stream passing thro. it. That of the Osage 40 miles west of the state of Missouri is about a mile in width. In addition to this we usually find on one or both sides of the water courses, and proportioned somewhat to their size, a gentle ascent of land, extending in the case above mentioned of Osage from three to five miles back, and terminating at the base of hills which may rise 100, or 150 feet, their sides sometimes abrupt, but oftener more gentle. There are seen many hills detached from their kindred, conical, oblong, and of many a different shape, so regular in their structure that the ob server can scarcely forbid conviction that they are artificial. These isolated hills are little else than heaps of limestone.

Ascending above the stony sides of hills of more social 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 a single break abrupt beyond convenience, and yet the country not flat. Elevations of similar character often occur a second or third time as we pass back from a creek, until we reach the summit between the neighbouring streams.

On the Kanzas and its waters, stone is equally plenty, and is in the same way happily placed for convenience without annoyance to man. But it is mostly sand-stone. For two days in the neighbourhood of the upper Kanzas villages I saw scarcely any except sand stone. As we came lower down the river we saw some limestone as well as sand. On Kanzas the soil of course corresponds with the quality of the stone. It is somewhat sandy, not so black as the limestone lands of Neosho and Osage, & in many instances less fertile. The face of the country is the same with that we have been describing, except that, as might be expected within six or ten miles of the river the country is more broken, the hills along the rivulets higher, and more abrupt and rocky.

This country which is generally prairie, differs greatly from most prairie lands in Ohio, Indiana & Illinois. In those countries prairie lands are usually too flat with too little stone, often accompanied with quagmires & ponds, and consequently unfavourable to health.


Here it is quite the reverse, scarcely a quagmire is to be found. The season for two or three months has been remarkably dry, yet we found no scarcity of water. Water courses of suitable size for mills and other water works, are numerous. But, as it happens generally in the state of Missouri, most of these streams so far fail in the dry seasons, that mills and other machines would stand still. In this respect the country resembles the state of Missouri and the middle & upper counties of Kentucky.

A degree of unhealthiness attends all large water courses in the western country. This will be the case in the immediate vicinity of Kanzas river. Osage river is too small to produce any deleterious effect beyond the distance of 30 or 35 miles west of Missouri state, and not even that far except on its very banks. With these exceptions which doubtless are as inconsiderable as those of similar character of any portion of the western country, not a doubt can exist of the healthiness of those regions.

Timber is too scarce. This is the greatest defect observeable. Wood is chiefly confined to the water courses and the width of the streak of timber is generally proportioned to the size of the stream passing through it. Some exceptions, however occur, where the timber stretches back on to the uplands, or exists on the high lands at the sources of the streams. But wood is 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 fuel on their journey, they have avoided the water courses as much as possible because of the difficulty of travelling near them on account of the brush & the steep and rocky breaks, the prairies back from the water courses, affording more pleasant ways for the traveller than could be found, perhaps, in any other country destitute of roads. The uplands being almost universally prairie, the sight unobstructed passes to its utmost stretch over lands of similar height, so that the country at a little distance around the observer appears to be more level than it really is. These upland prairies over which they look, rise higher than the tops of the trees in the bottom lands, and often twice or three times as high, and conceal from the sight most of the timber, while the traveller ascribing to the lands a mile or two from him, a degree of levelness which does not exist, supposes he sees almost every grove within the reach of his sight, and hence 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 a distance and even at no great distance, amidst the vast prospect which the openness of the country affords, appear much narrower than they really are.

Wood immediately along the Kanzas river, and that branching off along the numerous smaller streams, is sufficient to sustain tolerably 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 mile wide. Woodlands of greater or less magnitude extend along every tributary water course, some of which are little inferior to the main river. Unlike the idea we drew from many of our maps, water courses, from the largest to the smallest, on Kanzas, Osage and the upper regions of Neosho, are numerous, and interlocking at their sources, and proportionably numerous are the groves of woodland. There is much valuable timber, such as oak, ash, walnut, hickory, & mulberry. We also find 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 of coal, but from appearances, and the fact that it exists abundantly a short distance east, and southeast of the tract of which I am speaking, I have no doubt that this part of the country also possesses abundantly that valuable article. This fact goes far towards obviating difficulties which would arise from the scarcity of timber.

I hardly need to say that the whole country is clothed with grass, this on the dry fertile uplands is short and more suitable for grazing than for the scythe. Nearer to the water courses, & even to their very sources, it is well adapted to mowing. In Indiana, the eastern parts of Illinois and Michigan Territory grass of suitable length for mowing is seldom found except on wet land. In the country which we are describing scarcely any wet land exists, yet nature has provided therein well clothed meadows.

I did not discover any of those ancient mounds and fortifications which are so abundant in some parts of the western country. On the summits of high natural mounds, and hills, which were so situated as to attract the notice of the traveller, I frequently found a heap of stones formed by the hands of man. In one or two instances their construction indicated the existence of reasons for their formation similar to those which led to the formation of artificial mounds mentioned above. Heaps of stone are often made


over the bodies of the deceased among the Indians of these regions. But the heaps 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 few stones thrown together to advertise a subsequent visitant that a human being had been there. To this heap each successive visitant, invited thither by curiosity contributes 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 9th October, after an absence of forty nine days. [27] On the 10th I crossed the Mississippi with our Indians, and travelled with them until the 12th at which time they proceeded being supplied with the means of returning comfortably to their homes.

It affords me great satisfaction to be able to assure you that those Potawatomies & Ottawas returned to their places well satisfied with the usage they had received from the servants of government, while a still more favourable impression had been made on their minds by their friendly interviews with Osages, Kanzas, Pawnees, & Shawanoes, the three former of whom they had previously reckoned among their enemies. They were well pleased with the country they had seen. All agreed that it was well adapted to the purposes of Indian settlement, and, excepting one expressed a strong desire to settle therein. When about parting with them I was requested to become the bearer of a communication to the President on this subject. It is only because the protracted length of the expedition has denied me the opportunity of passing by their place that I have not this communication now to submit. Measures however have 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 has progressed the objects of the government in relation to those tribes, are fully attained. I returned to St. Louis Oct. 13th and found that the Chickasaws and Choctaws had arrived the preceding day. On the 17th the Chickasaws moved off from St. 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 Doctor Todson


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

sixty horses.


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


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

From the Osage villages [43] we took the road to the Creek agency on the Verdigris river, within four miles of its junction with the Arkansaw. [44] Here and near Fort Gibson we remained five days. [45] Leaving the Creek delegation with their countrymen on Verdigris [46] we again took up the line of march the 2d of December. [47] We crossed Arkansaw and continued our common 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 the mouth of the south fork. This was the most westwardly point that we made on this tour, which was about 48 miles west of the Territory of Arkansaw, and 260 miles south of the mouth of Kanzas river, 255 from where we went out of the state of Missouri. In coming to this point after leaving the state we travelled about as direct, 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, and Piankeshaws, the next 48 miles was thro. unappropriated lands. Then 50 miles across 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 the south fork of Canadian river, we entered the Choctaw lands.

Here it was resolved to turn eastwardly towards Fort Smith with a view to the termination of the expedition. We left this place the 5th Decr. travelled two days down the Canadian, and on the 7th Deer. we separated. [48] The two southern delegations were expected at that instant to proceed to Fort Smith, but one of their company having killed a Buffaloe the preceding 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, invited by the cane. Farther north they range more remotely, & on Missouri river there is none within many hundred miles. They were furnished with the means of returning comfortably to their places to which they were nearer than when at St. Louis, having travelled after leaving the state of Missouri a distance nearly equal to that travelled west of the same line in September. We had been only two days within the Choctaw lands. One of them who was a man of influence, expressed a desire to remain longer time, for the purpose of becoming acquainted with that country, 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 would arrive the 25th or 27th. It was the 10th December when on our return we passed the Creek agency. There we again saw the Creek delegation. On that day they set off for their homes. They had not explored much of their country, but had contented themselves with spending the time in the neighbourhood of their relations. The Creeks now in this country are chiefly or all of the McIntosh party. The delegation was from the opposite party. This interview of the parties was characterized by expressions of friendship from both, and an agreement that all former grudges should be forgotten. The emigrants invited the others to come to their country, and spoke greatly in its praise. This was seconded by a written communication from Chilly McIn-


tosh to his countrymen in the south. The feelings with which the delegation set off for their places justify the hope of a favourable result. [50] In every arrangement in relation to the removal of the Creeks, I would respectfully suggest the propriety of placing out of sight as far as possible everything of party character.

It had been desirable to pass out of the state of Missouri on the north side of Missouri river, to cross that stream above the mouth of Kansas, and generally to have borne farther to the west. But the Indians were averse to this course. From the place where we passed out of the state of Missouri to the crossing of Osage river, a distance of about 70 miles, we were travelling thro. the country of which I have already given a description. The next 20 miles being still on the waters of Osage, was of similar character. 20 miles farther which brought us to Neosho led us across a country becoming more level, with fewer water courses. This continued to be the case for the next 100 miles. Limestone was less abundant and in many instances mingling with, and sometimes giving place to sand stone and flint. The prairies not so fertile as those at the sources of the river. Nature here has not observed the same regularity in decking the watercourses with wood as in the country farther northwest. Here timber is oftener seen on the hills, and the groves along streams are less regular in their width, and more frequently detached. Timber along Neosho river in the neighbourhood of the Osage villages may be from three hundred yards, to three miles in width. The next 40 miles which brings us to the mouths of Neosho and Verdigris (only four or five miles apart) is better timbered more hilly, & has less limestone, generally sand-


stone, also some flint. The hills are more stony and poor, yet abundance of good prairie lies among them.

*From the neighbourhood of the Creek Agency and Fort Gibson, the whole distance that we travelled until we returned to that place it may be said that the country is pretty well timbered. On the south of Canadian river the general arrangement of woodlands and prairies is precisely the reverse of that of the Osage and Kanzas country. Here the hills, which are usually stony and 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 fertile prairies. Sand stone almost universally prevails on the south of Arkansas. In one instance for a few miles I discovered slate. The bottom lands of Arkansaw appeared to be from three to five miles wide, well clothed with timber, and in many places covered with cane ten or 12 feet high, and so dense that considerable resolution & 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 of Arkansaw, the latter more subject to inundations. Verdigris, Neosho, Arkansaw Canadian, North Fork, and South fork, all mingle their waters in the same vicinity. On this account this part of the country is more hilly than some others we have described.

The country the whole route south of Osage river, like that on the north wears a healthy countenance, with such exceptions as we made 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 for the multiplicity of its large streams, a greater proportion of fevers and agues must 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, which will 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 which ran over a bed of coal. The south bank of Arkansaw, where we crossed it near Fort Gibson abounded with coal. From other specimens of less note, and the concurrent testimony of all acquainted in the country there can be no doubt that coal exists therein in great abundance.

The Cherokees own, on the east side of Neosho river lead mines which promise to become very productive. I saw specimens of the ore which 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 in Creek or rivulet, except a few springs. Osage is tolerably clear though in September 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 still less, and the south fork of Canadian river is of similar character. Canadian river is more deeply stained, and is of a reddish yellow, almost as highly coloured as if nature had intended its waters for a dye. Banks washed by water disclose strata of coloured earth. Hence it is easy to account for the appearance of those waters. South of Arkansaw, & in the vicinity of Canadian river especially, the earth generally is tinged with a reddish purple.

We forded the Arkansaw both going out and returning, tho. the water was on my horses sides. About half the bed of the river only was at that time, covered with water, the other half sand beach. I measured the sand part at one place 270 yards-making the whole width of the river between its banks 540 yards. In the dry season of the year water is rather scarce for Steam boats of common burden. But this will nevertheless be found a valuable river for navigation as far west as the country in other respects will admit of settlement.

Kanzas river, where I examined it, appeared something narrower than Arkansaw, and was at that place deep. Its banks, and its appearance in other respects greatly resembles the Missouri.

Water of Canadian river, where we crossed it, was about 60 yards wide, of average depth 2 feet, with a gentle current. I measured the sand beach at this same place, 150 yards, making the river between its banks 210 yards wide. Its low lands are chiefly sand.

We crossed the North fork of Canadian at a rocky rapid, where in the distance of 50 yards is a fall of about three feet. Most of this descent is abrupt over sand rocks. The river here is deeper than I had expected to find it from the appearance of the deeper parts I had seen above. It is about 150 yards wide. The water where we crossed immediately below the principal pitch was sometimes to our horses knees, with a strong current. At that time


it sent down more water than the Canadian, tho. it is to be reckoned a river of considerably less magnitude.

The south fork empties into Canadian only a few miles above the entrance of the north fork. It is less than the latter, and does not extend a long distance west as most of our maps indicate. It comes from the south 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 to the 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 had seen so little of it, when we parted with them that it could not be expected they should be able to form any opinion respecting it. On the whole route they and the Chickasaws were reserved in conversation on the subject of country, their removal &c. They were not wanting in expressions of friendship, but chose to say little on the objects of the expedition, tho. all had plainly enough expressed their 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 be gratified to hear from them on this subject. The next morning the following communication, written by one of their party, and signed by them all, was handed me.

Canadian river, 7th Decr. 1828
To Mr. McCoy
Friend & Brother
In reply to your requests we have to say to you that from the situation of affairs at home, we are not able to give you any account of the present tour. When we return home, and find our affairs settled with the general government satisfactorily to us, we will then make our report to our 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 did not expect to be pleased. It was unfortunate that there was a necessity for pressing on them to make the tour the present season. They were induced to feel themselves on the occasion more independent, and to take


greater liberty in dictating the route, than was to the advantage of the expedition. Nevertheless their conduct was at all times marked with civility and decorum greatly to their credit as gentlemen, and such, I am confident as would not suffer by comparison with american citizens on any similar expedition. They were utterly averse to going north of the state of Missouri, and with avidity seized upon every pretext for shortening the route. I am not prepared to recommend at this time a repetition of the expedition for the benefit of these people, 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 here respectfully suggest that should another exploring expedition be ordered for similar purposes in relation to any of the tribes, the fewer the number of persons, so it be sufficient for their security and convenience in travelling, and the more simple and unostentatious, that every movement connected therewith can be, the better. In confirmation of this idea I need only refer to the expenditures incurred on the late expedition, in relation to the Potawatomies and Ottawas, and which might have been less had they been less associated with the whole, 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 remotely from 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 of their inutility.

Those southern delegations were composed chiefly or entirely of agricultural men, and were no doubt, good judges of country in the regions where they have always resided. But every country has its peculiar features, indicative of its fitness, or unfitness for the comfortable abode of men. Instances abound of the want of skill in emigrants from the eastern and southern states, in the selection of lands in the western country. On the waters of Osage, when travelling over prairie lands which (excepting timber) equalled in situation & fertility of soil, the excellent lands in the neighborhood of Lexington & Georgetown, Kentucky, they complained of its poorness. It seemed not easy to correct their errors. On one occasion after reasoning some time with five persons who were riding with me, I alighted and excavated the earth that they might judge from the blackness, depth, and mellowness of the soil. But altho. reason could not furnish a reply to this kind of argument, yet I had not the satisfaction to suppose that those rich prairies were esteemed much


better than sterile plains while lands of inferior quality were often remarked as the richest in the country. There was nothing mysterious in this beyond what often happens in relation to those of our own citizens when required to form an opinion of lands in a country where they are ignorant of the characteristics of its good and bad land. There is perhaps no subject agitated among men, apparently so obvious upon persons equally tenacious of truth which so widely differ. Liability to mistake in this respect becomes the greater where one whose possessions have been found in a timbered country, is required to judge of what may be termed a prairie country. Pardon me for suggesting that in ordering all similar exploring expeditions in future this fact ought to be borne in mind. The season had so far advanced before we could leave St. Louis, added to the little inclination of the Indians to make the tour before next spring, that I almost despaired of a favourable issue of the expedition. My discouragements were augmented on passing out of the state of Missouri. That country in September had been the most delightful to the eye, of any that I had ever seen. From the splendid elevation, the unbounded prospect of high rolling prairies, clothed with grass of Autumnal gray, spotted, and streaked with woodlands in cheerful green, describing the course of every stream, was beautiful beyond description. But now the woods were in winter dress. The grass of the prairies burnt, or burning, the dust rising from the recently burnt prairies, agitated by our horses' feet, exceedingly troublesome. The atmosphere so smoky that sight was limited to a little sphere. The prairies black, and every thing apparently clad in mourning, the whole agravated by winds which sometimes blew incessantly in our faces for a whole day's journey. Autumn gives to a timbered country, especially if it be fertile an air of pleasantness delightful to him who explores, for the purpose of becoming acquainted with it. Precisely the reverse is the case with a prairie country. In autumn the traveller does not feel the cold of winter, the wet of spring, 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 prairie country appear so little inviting to one who likes it, or so forbidding to one who is inclined to dislike like, as in the fall about the time of the burning of

the grass on the prairies. As might be expected our southern delegations manifested less inclination to settle in the more northern parts of the country under consideration than in the more southern. It therefore became the


more perplexing on the tour, that almost all the country of Arkansaw and its waters had been previously assigned to other tribes so that there remained, in a manner, none vacant for the examination of the Chickasaws. The Choctaws own a great deal of excellent country. The better parts are severed by the chain of mountainous 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, and another extending in the same direction along Arkansaw and Canadian. Very few of the tribe are located in that country, and these mostly on Red river. They could spare country fully sufficient for the use of the Chickasaws on Arkansaw & Canadian rivers, north of the broken poor regions that divide the better parts of their country. They would still retain in the southern parts as much as would be necessary for them of excellent quality, while that given to the Chickasaws would perhaps not be inferiour. Such is the obvious excellence of that country that the Chickasaws could not possibly plead its defects as an objection to their removal. The countries now owned by the Choctaws, Creeks and Cherokees, are sufficiently extensive to accommodate the Chickasaws also-& even more. Those tribes are accustomed to neighbourhood relations, & the climate is such as they have ever enjoyed. In these remarks I include the whole of those tribes, wherever they may at present exist.

I may not be so fortunate as to meet with many who concur with me in opinion relative to the country under consideration (I mean the whole described in our remarks) yet I hesitate not to pronounce it in my estimation very good, and well adapted to the purposes of Indian settlement. I think I risk nothing in supposing that no state or territory in the union embraces a tract of equal extent and fertility, so little broken by lands not tilable, with that lying south of Kanzas, & on Osage and the upper branches of Neosho, the extent of which I have not yet been able to ascertain. This country 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 there will be found a sufficiency of the former, in connexion with coal, to answer the purposes in question with tolerable convenience.

The navigation of the Missouri river will always be attended with difficulty and hazard. Arkansaw & perhaps Red river will be better. But the privileges of navigation will nevertheless be very moderate. Should the territory prosper the time will come when this circumstance will be felt as a serious inconvenience. At present it is perhaps no disadvantage and may not be for many years hence.


It is one of the local causes which will secure the Indians in the possession of that country:

The prevailing business of this country will be the raising of cattle, sheep, horses, and mules. This state of things will arise out of the fitness of the country for such purposes on account of the plentiful grazing, the natural meadows for mowing, and the abundance of salt, and out of the paucity of navigable privileges. Livestock can be exported to market without navigation. This fact also diminishes the difficulties which would otherwise arise out of the scarcity of timber. If the inhabitants should be inclined to grow grain extensively for market, the more fencing &c would be necessary. As it is, the extent of fields will be proportioned to the immediate wants of the inhabitants, and an account of natural grazing & meadowlands, pastures & meadows on farms may be less.

From actual observation, and information from others on which I can rely, I think I have formed a pretty correct opinion, so far the data upon which it is predicated are correct, of the regions which nature, and our western settlements, have described for the purposes [of] permanent Indian habitation. In fixing the boundaries of states and smaller divisions of our country, nature is usually consulted. I shall adopt the same course, by your permission to express, respectfully my views respecting the proper limits to be allowed for Indian settlement.

A strip of valuable country lies from Missouri river along the western line of Missouri state, to its North west corner, one 100 miles, bounded on the south west by Missouri river. This tract is about 50 miles wide at its northern extremity, and comes to a point at its southern. A few Iowas and Sauks have recently been located there, but nature seems to have designed that the Missouri, which from the line of the state bears greatly to the north as we ascend, should be the line between the whites and the Indians. Farther northwest the river will doubtless form this division, and it would appear an injudicious arrangement which should require us hereafter in the use of that portion of the Missouri river, to pass thro. the Indian territories. However excellent must be this gore of land of which we are speaking, our first thoughts furnish many reasons for supposing that an Indian settlement, severed from its kindred by the navigation of Missouri, and lying along side of white settlements, would not flourish. [52]


From where the western line of the state of Missouri crosses the Missouri river, the general direction of the latter as we ascend is northwest for the distance, on a direct line, of 260 miles. It then turns to the west 100 miles. Then it again bears to north west, and north leaving the smaller streams of Runningwater and Puncah rivers, to mark the westwardly direction towards the Rocky moun tains. I hope, sir, that a glance at some of the later maps will procure an apology for my supposing that Running water & Puncah rivers and the Missouri should form the northern boundary of the Indian Territory, the latter river the north eastern. The state of Missouri & territory of Arkansaw, the eastern, Red river (which is here our southern boundary) the southern, and the uninhabitable regions stretching nearly north and south on this side of the rocky mountains, should form the western limits of the territory.

This tract would be six hundred miles long from south to north. This distance we may believe there is habitable country of the average width from east to west of 200 miles, with some exception at its north occasioned by the inclination of Missouri river to west on the line of 260 miles mentioned above. West beyond the distance of about 200 miles we may suppose the country to be uninhabitable in consequence of the absence of timber, and, as reports say, the poverty of the soil. This tract is supposed to be fully adequate to all the purposes which the case will require. It can hardly be thought too much when we consider that 340 miles of the six hundred, has already been assigned to different tribes, notwithstanding the work is scarcely begun.

It was an excellent design which led to the extinguishment of Indian title to all the country north of Red river as far the dividing lands between Kanzas river & the great river Platt (Kanza & Osage reservations excepted) But I beg leave to express less admiration of circumstance of giving to the tribes who now have claims there, more-a great deal more than was requisite. These and subsequent remarks on the same subject, imply not the smallest censure of those officers of government who have made those assignments of lands. They had their instructions, or were guided by reasons well understood by themselves and in many instances no doubt they were influenced by circumstances not under their control. In the country under consideration lands have 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 distance of 395 miles on a direct line. All these lands have been given away except a strip along Osage and the upper branches of Neosho, which in its narrowest part at the east is about 40 miles wide, and in its broadest about 75, and a strip extending north and south between the line of Missouri & the Osage reservation, &c. 25 miles wide, and about 80 miles long.

The assignments of these lands were not made, I suppose, with a view to an Indian Territory, the right to which should be secured 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 of the design, and moreover room would not be found without taking in much of the country north of the state of Missouri. 2d. Government has not yet said that that country should be given to them for a permanent home. The only treaty with any of those tribes, that I have noticed, which seems to involve the principle of a secure home to them under the guarantee of government, is that which was concluded with the Cherokees of Arkansaw, the 31st May last. In that treaty every assurance that could be desired, is given to the Indians that the lands therein assigned shall be theirs forever. But this is a matter relating to a single tribe only. Great embarrassment was felt on the late expedition because almost all the lands we saw in what we will term the Indian country, had previously been given away.

It is a fact which need not be concealed that, if our Indian tribes are to be removed to that country, some millions of acres must be re-purchased for their use, and there is too much ground to fear that such lands will be purchased with greater difficulty than they were at former treaties.

Facts already stated, together with some which will appear hereafter, induce me to beg leave respectly, further to suggest that a superintendency of Indian settlement, with a view to all matters relating thereto, 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 offer the following considerations. 1st. The business of the Indian Agents is limited to their several spheres, for which, as is natural they undesignedly and without crime contract partialities. The matter of In-


than settlement in the territory requires concert and harmony in the operations of all the parts. The superintendency in St. Louis is 300 miles from the nearest point of the Indian territory, and consequently too remote to manage all to advantage.

2d. In a country like this where in forming settlements, the amount of woodlands, the number of the tribe &c. have to be consulted, a personal acquaintance with these things is necessary to their judicious arrangement. Information on these points obtained at a distance comes from those whose duty it is for each merely to speak of his own district without any one to report on them conjointly who is personally acquainted with the whole, and alike interested in all the circumstances of Indian settlement. It is in this way only that we may hope that a judicious apportionment of lands can be made.

3d. The seven millions of acres of land ceded to the Cherokees of Arkansaw last winter, runs over a valuable portion of lands previously granted to the Creeks. This mistake in the assignment of Indian lands owned for want of correct information of the geographical situation of the country. It is impossible for a just distribution of land to be made by a mere reference to our maps. To me it appears evident that the difficulty above mentioned originated in the absence of a superintendency, extending with equal interest to all parts-to all tribes, and informed of all.

4th. The superabundance of the several claims and the clashing of claims, are not the only defects of this character in the present system of operation. I suppose that the circumstance of giving to each tribe "an Out-let" so called, is entirely superfluous and calculated to lead to perplexing difficulties. By out-lets is understood, a slip of land extending from that more particularly stipulated in the treaty as being designed for settlement, west into the uninhabitable regions of 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 of their claims with those of the Cherokees. But that which belongs to both is about 120 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 the west. But why not make those uninhabitable regions a common hunting ground for all the several hunting parties will not be able to distinguish the particular slip of land allowed for hunting purposes to the tribe to which the party belongs. And even if they could the hunter nevertheless will roam wherever the game is to be found. If


metes and bounds be fixed to those hunting lands trespasses will inevitably be frequent, and may lead to unpleasant consequences.

In the allowance of those out-lets there is sometimes ceded away to the tribe a great 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 place granted to them several millions of acres, and then in addition there is given to them all the lands west of this 7,000,000 tract & south of the 36 degree of N. Latitude. If we suppose the country of the Choctaws to be valuable from the distance of 200 miles west of their eastern limits, they in that case claim of good 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' territories extend.

5th. This superintendency for which we respectfully plead, is [neces] sary in order to the establishing of such a central point in the Territory as will give to the inhabitants the idea of civil government, and in which all the parts will become united in one common bond of interest, for the preservation of peace and harmony.

6th. The greatest defect in this country, (and I am sorry that it is of so serious a character) is the scarcity of timber. If fields be made in the timbered land, which most persons who have been accustomed to timbered countries are inclined to do, the Indians more especially because often unprepared with teams for breaking prairies, timber will Soon become too scarce to sustain the population which the plan under consideration contemplates. I trust that I need offer no apology for supposing that measures ought to be immediately adopted, for marking off to each settler, or class of settlers the amount of timbered land really necessary for their use severally and no more. The timber generally is so happily distributed in streaks and groves, that each farm may be allowed the amount of timber requisite, and then extend back into the prairie lands for quantity. The prairies being almost universally rich, and well situated for cultivation, afford uncommon facilities for the operation of such a method. By pursueing 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 shall check the annual burning of those prairies. These regulations, essential to the future prosperity of the territory, cannot be made without the existence of the superintendency of which I Speak. Let it be said that the country within such and Such defined boundaries shall be given to the Indians for the purposes under consideration-next establish such a course


of things as will render it possible to make a fair distribution of it among its inhabitants in view of their numbers and circumstances, and which will secure to them the possibility of future prosperity. Please to indulge me in expressing an opinion on another [point] deeply affecting the interests of this territory, and which I am confident claims the earliest attention of our government.

The Osages are avowedly engaged in an unnecessary war with Pawnees, Kamanches, and others who wander in the regions west of them. Several skirmishes occurred the last summer and fall. Osage hunting parties are frequently attacked and sometimes the enemy approaches quite to their villages. A few months ago a house erected for the Osage Chief Walking-Rain,- [53] at a considerable expense to the United States, was scarcely completed, and had not been occupied by the owner when it was visited by a company of their enemies who spent the night in their building, the destruction of which had been entirely within their power. The owner 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 two prisoners among them recently taken from the Pawnees, and some scalps, and horses. This state of warfare tends greatly to the neglect among the Osages, of hunting and the employment of other means for their subsistence and comfort. The mischiefs of the Pawnees, & Kamanches, &c. affect others also beside the Osages. I remarked to the Shawanoes that they had settled too near the line of Missouri. I was answered, "they were aware of the inconvenience to be expected from their proximity to white settlements, but they were afraid to go farther back," on account of mischievous Indians. For the same reasons the Potawatomies and Ottawas who desire to settle in that country, would be afraid to locate on the most eligible site. Other cases of similar character could be pointed to. It seems exceedingly necessary to the improvement of the territory to adopt measures that will give to the inhabitants of that country, and especially to emigrants, an assurance of safety.

At a considerable expense to the U. States a road has been laid out from the state of Missouri to Santa Fe in the Mexican territories. [54] Such has been the improvement of trade to that country that this has become a plainly beaten wagonn road. Our enterprising citizens have often returned from the mexican territories richly


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 that country two caravans, at different times were robbed by those western Indians.

The first company had two men killed, and lost about 700 mules and horses. The second had one man killed, lost scarcely a less number of animals-were forced to abandon their wagons & baggage-carry about $6,000 in specie on their backs and 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 in their robberies-and invite a greater number to engage in them, and our Indian settlements in that country, as well as the trade to Santa Fe, are destined soon to feel the effects of them more seriously than heretofore, unless efficient measures to check them be speedily adopted by our government. What measures would be most eligible is not easily determined. [55] The villages of many of those Indians who are known to be engaged in these acts of hostility, are within the Mexican territories. They wander on the sources of Arkansaw along the mountains, and make excursions south and east --send an armed force into the country where they wander. They could fly faster than troops could pursue. It would be impossible to come upon them unawares, for they are ever on the alert in this respect, and those woodless plains forbid the concealment of the traveller. If troops by strategem were to come in contact with a company of Indians, it would be almost, or quite impossible to decide whether they were offendors, or an inoffensive hunting party, for every hunting party is prepared for war, on account of their continual dread of their enemies. Buffalos and other game are abundant in every place. They would therefore feel no inconvenience in flying from one place to another, and so soon as our troops would return, they would be ready to resume their mal-conduct.

To station troops farther west than any are at present located would be better than the plan above referred to but it could not obviate the difficulty. They had the hardihood last summer to attack and kill our citizens almost within sight of Fort Towson. For this they were in return scourged, but not reformed. I hope I shall not be deemed uncharitable for conjecturing that others, beside Indians have a hand in these depredations upon our citizens. No company, I believe, has yet been attacked on it's way to Santa Fe; attacks are invariably made on those who are returning. The times of their


leaving Santa Fe are there known, and opportunity afforded for making timely preparations for mischief. They are watched from their outsetting until a favourable opportunity offers for the attack.

In order to put a stop to these alarming raids, I would advise that from the Osages, who are the only Indians avowedly engaged in this war, a delegation be sent into the country where those Pawnees and Comanches, and others might be found, for the purpose of making peace with them. [56] Let them be conducted by such commissioners 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 to commence the expedition. Leave the state of Missouri at the mouth of Kanzas river, and proceed westwardly. Ten days journey might bring them in contact with some, by whom messages of peace could be forwarded to others, and runners sent still farther after hunting or war parties, and places would be agreed on from time to time for meeting the several bands. Four or five months would be sufficient for the purposes of the expedition, which would terminate by a more southern 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 a respectable trader, [57] not long 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 to be peaceable with Osages and other Indians in that country and to cease their depredations on the Santa Fe road. I have reason to believe that those Indians would eagerly avail themselves of such a state of things should the subject be laid before them in its proper light. Peace once established could be preserved, because the stipulations would be immediately followed by the establishment of trading houses as far as our boundaries extend, and in other respects they would be brought within the ken and influence of our government. This done they would give us in future no more trouble. While in our acquaintance with them we should find our account in matters of trade. Instead of being robbers they would become trappers, and the trade of the


mountains, already lucrative, could be carried on without molestation. The plan has not been disclosed to the Osages, but while I was in their country such 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 the measure.

I have the honor to be with Very great Respect, Sir
Your Obedient Servant
Isaac McCoy

During the whole of both tours I kept a daily journal. It was of importance on both that we had a map [prepared for the occasion?], of the country between Arkansaw Territory and state of Missouri, and the Rocky mountains, and extending from 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 such a 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 adequate to the purposes of a permanent and comfortable house for the Indians, and whatever may be the obstacles which at present oppose, they may, nevertheless be located there without recourse to any measure not in accordance with the most rigid principles of justice and humanity. In such a location only can be found hopes of their future prosperity-and here their prospects would not be shaded by a doubt.

Washington City
Jan. 29, 1829.


February 4, 1829.

SIR: As leader of the exploring expedition, composed of deputations from the Choctaws, 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 from General 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 the Kansas river, and on the south


side of the Missouri. Finding that the deputations were averse to going as far north as the instructions required, I was induced in some measure to change the contemplated route, and bear to the south. For our course, I would beg leave to refer 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 notes taken on the route, herewith enclosed.

The Chickasaws and Choctaws being at war with the Osages, I thought it advisable to go to their villages, and effect, if possible, a peace. After consulting with the deputations, and finding they were of my opinion, we concluded and went to the Osage villages, where we were well received and hospitably treated. I induced them to make a peace satisfactory to both parties.

There is a sufficient quantity of well timbered and watered land on the Arkansas and its tributaries for the whole of the southern Indians, if a proper distribution be made.

The Creek deputation expressed themselves in high terms of the country assigned to them by the Government, and will make a favorable report to their nation, and make use of their influence in getting their people to emigrate to it. As is customary with Indians, the Choctaws and Chickasaws were very guarded in the expression of any opinion about the country, or of their removing to it. I am inclined to believe, however, that, if the United States will procure from the Choctaws a sufficient portion of their lands, lying on and south of the Canadian fork of the Arkansas river, and make an offer of it to the Chickasaws, they will accept it. This opinion is predicated upon some conversations I had with the deputation at various times, but upon no positive assurance from them.

The Chickasaws being in a great measure under the protection of the Choctaws, in consequence of the number of the latter tribe, I think it would be the best policy 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., accompanying this, 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 the Honorable Secretary of War, the exploring expedition, composed of deputations from the Chickasaw, Choctaw, and Creek 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 the west of the State of Missouri, together with that situated between the Canadian forks of the Arkansas River.

As topographers to the expedition, Lieut. Washington Hood and John W. Bell were appointed to accompany it; which having done, they have the honor to make the following report:

The country from the western boundary line of the State of Missouri, as far as the waters of the Arkansas, with but few exceptions, is prairie; the soil generally deep and rich, although it varies as it is situated at a greater or less distance from the streams watering the country; that, of course, being the best which approaches nearest the creeks and rivers;, it is mostly of a dark brown color, and doubtless, if put to the test, would produce abundantly. The prairie, with respect to appearance, differs a good deal between the two points 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 vicinity of the State line has the latter appearance, whilst that which is on the waters of the Neosho, may be almost classed with the former. As the former however prevails, the soil becomes more sterile, on account of the rains washing it from the 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 stone which 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 each other; they are often of a conical form, and again forming extensive ridges, the extremities of which are rounded off so as to present the appearance of a semitone. They vary in height from fifty to one hundred and fifty feet, but are seldom of greater altitude; their bases of different dimensions, according to the form.

The country situated between the forks of the Canadian, after passing the mouth of the Little North fork, or Deep Fork as it is sometimes called, presents a very different appearance. At the


distance of from seven to nine miles from the junction of the main Canadian with the Arkansas, it is in many places quite hilly; between these hills, however, we often meet with very handsome valleys of considerable extent, well timbered. The latter is applicable to the hills also.

The soil is here mixed with a great portion of sand, no doubt arising from the disintegration of the sand stone, which abounds in this part of the country. It differs from that met with on the Neosho and Osage rivers, having, generally, a very dark cast, approaching almost to a purple color.

It is said that the bottom land laying near the mouth of the Canadian, and continuing 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 the situation a delightful one. The margins of the different water courses in this vicinity are generally pretty extensive, and must, in time, become thickly populated.

The country from Missouri on as far as the Creek Agency on the Verdigris, rests on an extensive bed of limestone; from this, continuing south, it appears to be sandstone.

The majority of the streams passed by the expedition have always a number of small branches acting as feeders; ravines, also, passing off from the prairies, the sides of which are ofttimes rocky, render the land in many places considerably broken.

The current of these streams could not be considered as very rapid; probably, at this season, being quite low, their tendency to rapidity is decreased; but, from all accounts, the most of them, even the smallest branches, which, in some parts of the year, are completely dry, when swollen by the rains and the melting of the snow in the Spring, render their velocity so great as to carry every thing before it. At this period, of course, the waters rise to a great height, inundating all the country around, and sometimes to a considerable distance.

The Arkansas river is the largest of the streams passed by the expedition after leaving Missouri. It rises in the Rocky Mountains, and pursues a winding course in a southeasterly direction, passing through a vast extent of country, until it discharges itself into the Mississippi.

The banks of this stream are not high at either of the points where the expedition forded it, and from the appearances presented, we would not suppose they were of any great height in its whole course. The width is between five and six hundred yards at the


point where we first struck the river; the taste of the water is slightly brackish; the banks are composed of a reddish clay, mixed with sand. This stream has 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 wind is high, presents at a distance the appearance of a storm. This river is easily forded in the vicinity of Cantonment Gibson, on the Neosho, at this season of the year.

Into its waters are discharged those of some considerable streams; the Neosho, Verdigris, Illinois, and Canadian, are the principal ones. Their junctions with the Arkansas are not far from each other, the whole being contained in the distance, forty miles. The three first enter from the east, and the latter from the west of the Arkansas river.

The margins of these streams, as also of the tributaries, are generally timbered, sometimes continued along its whole course, and at others merely in groves; this is the case on some parts of the Neosho or Grand River. The timber on this, as well as the Osage, is very good, being large and of an excellent quality in many places. The great fault to be found with it is on account of its scarcity, not extending 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 or five miles from its mouth, may be considered as well timbered for seventy or eighty miles up the stream, and between the branches of the main river. In fact, this part appears to be covered with it; but, on continuing up towards its head waters, we are told very little is 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 between the head waters, not only of this river, but also those of the Arkansas and its branches.

Its width is from ten to thirty miles. After passing beyond this, no timber of any consequence is met with, the whole being a vast prairie country. On some parts of the Neosho, as we approached the Arkansas, canebrakes were seen upon the margins of this stream. These, however, in comparison with those more south, 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, it grows so close as to impede, in a great measure, the progress of any one travelling through them.

The country ceded to the Osages, and continuing south, appears to abound in coal. In the bank of the Neosho river, near the Agency, and on the same side, there is a fine bed, having the same appearance, and possessing the same properties with that found in the vicinity of Pittsburg. The bank of this stream, at this place, is exclusively sandstone, of a light red color, varying, however, to yellow and grey. Shell limestone is found also in the different little creeks and ravines about this agency.

The extent of this bed is not known; but it probably continues for a great distance. At the point where the expedition forded the Riviere la Bate, or River of Reptiles, its entire bed, for the distance of from three to four hundred yards, was found to be of stone coal, of a similar kind with that mentioned above.

In the southern bank of the Arkansas, just on the left of the point at which we struck and forded the river, near Cantonment Gibson, there is a bluff composed of strata of slate and sandstone, the former of which is combined with a great quantity of coal; in fact, it is found in a number of the small streams watering the country; from which we conclude, that, although there is a scarcity of fuel of 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 handsome appearance, quite soft; the Indians procure, burn, and use it as a paint; when burnt, it loses its transparency, becomes brittle, &c.; in what quantities it occurs is not known.

Galena is said to occur in the different small branches in and about the land ceded to the Osages; one specimen only was obtained, which was found in Flag river, a small branch of the Neosho; it is crystallized, and would yield from 50 to 60 per cent. of pure lead.

Near Mr. Cheauteau's trading house, on the Neosho, [59] between two and three miles southeast from it, there is, apparently, a very fine salt spring; the water rises through a number of apertures made by the spring in a limestone rock which covers a space of about two acres.

The quantity of salt which could be obtained from a certain quantity of the water is not known, as the experiment has never been


made; from its taste, however, we would suppose that, if worked, it would prove very productive.

From this spring at all times rises great quantities of sulphuretted hydrogen; a piece of silver being placed in one of the apertures mentioned above, was turned black, thereby clearly indicating the presence of that gas.

For other information respecting the country passed through by the expedition, we would respectfully refer to the notes which follow. And here we beg the liberty to observe, that on account of the short time which elapsed during the tour, we had 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 same river. It cannot be expected that the map accompanying this sketch is in every respect correct, as, upon such an expedition as has been made, there are but few conveniences to enable us either to give satisfaction to ourselves, or those concerned with the expedition. Enough, however, has been said, to give, in general, a view of the country between the waters of the Blue, and those of the South 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 which are to accompany the maps. [60] The short 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 of the 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 original ones made on the expedition, commencing at the western boundary line of the State of Missouri, five miles south of the mouth of the Kanzas, and concluding at a point of the same line situated 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, soil very rich, well timbered, black and white oak, red and slippery elm, walnut, hickory, hackberry, black and honey locust, ash, lynn, some cherry-tree underwood, 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 to the 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 to half a mile from course, which was over the points of ridges making down to the Blue river, tributary to Missouri, which runs here parallel with course between one 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 a little 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] The general course of this creek, a little beyond this point, west. At No. 3 crossed the Santa Fe road; timber at this point just in sight on right; none in view on left 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 elevated ridge, which divides the waters of the Little and Big Blue; [64] from its summit no timber in sight, nothing in fact but an extensive rolling prairie; half a mile from point B, a small rivulet, on which is a handsome grove of timber; this heads about two and a half miles above where we crossed it; its general course from west to east, joining the Big Blue a short distance below; proceeding half a mile over level and well timbered land to point B, we struck the waters of the Big Blue; the timber on this stream, at point B, is near a mile in width, of the same kind as that which is found at the line; this however decreases as you approach its source, which is distant 10 or 12 miles, a little south of west; it is here about ten yards in width, banks 10 or 12 feet high, water clear, of a bluish green appearance where it is deep; its taste corresponds with that which is found passing over (as this stream does) a bed of limestone; soil from No. 3 to this point 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 continuing half a mile through oak, walnut, and hickory timber, ascending a long gentle slope from the stream, entered prairie; from the top of this rise we had a com manding view of the surrounding country; a continued rolling prairie on right; on left, the appearance was beautiful; numerous small streams, their margins timbered, were seen winding their courses in the valleys of this rolling country generally to E. and N. E.; continuing on for two miles, crossed a small branch running nearly at right angles with course; its banks are timbered, the width of the timber about 300 yards; after leaving it, we touched upon a prairie to the right; shortly after crossed another branch running from southwest to northeast, 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, as it respects color and taste; both are tributaries of this stream. From this we ascended a gently rising hill; on reaching its summit we had another view of the country around; this elevation is at < No. 1; groves of timber were seen to the southeast, 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 Fe road; two miles further, crossed a small creek, three miles from its head, containing clear running water, its course from northwest to southeast; masses of limestone are found on the summits and sides of the small ridges leading to this brook; near its margin there are a few scattering trees, which are low and scrubby; 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 to northeast; it forked just below point G [C?]; the left branch winds off in a southerly direction; its banks are of limestone, in some places perpendicular, the limestone in horizontal layers. The face of the country in this vicinity is generally rolling, but, as an approach is made to the creeks, it becomes broken and hilly, sometimes (as it is at this point) with steep and rocky cliffs. Very little 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 dividing ridge between the waters of the Blue and Grand rivers, the latter a branch of the Osage; from the top of this ridge no timber was seen in any direction; the course of this ridge from northwest to southeast; half a mile, crossed what is generally called 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 it approaches Grand river, its margins in some places timbered slightly; we passed down 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 stream quite broken; at No. 1, the timber on the creek to the left, which continues for 3 or 4 miles back, disappears; a little after, we met with a small grove of timber on right. The soil of this part of the country has been washed from its original situation in many. places, showing a part of the extensive bed of limestone 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, winding round some steep rocky hollows; timber to the west and northwest, down the hollows; country very rolling to 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 yards from No. 2, entered timber, which continued to a creek, another branch of the Grand river; country gently declining from the edge of the timber to creek; the soil mixed with nu-


merous small fragments of limestone; the course of it is from north to south; at the point where we struck and forded this stream, it has a beautiful grove of timber; it forks about half a mile above the last point mentioned; country not so much 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 nearly level; a moderately elevated ridge to right; continued 3 miles, and crossed the main branch of Grand river; its course appeared to be from northwest to southeast, and joined the one last mentioned about half a mile below; it is 15 or 20 yards in width, banks varying, 10 or 12 feet general height; beautiful grove of timber upon it, width 5 or 600 yards; the country is more rolling on the south than 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 a few hundred yards, enter prairie, nearly level about one mile; then ascend a ridge which divides the creek just passed and that in front; country on this ridge and S. S. E. and S. W., rather hilly and broken; limestone exposed in many places on the summits and sides of hills, and also in the prairie; passed from the ridge into an extensive valley, running from west to east, in which is a little timber, which is on a small dry creek; at the distance of one mile, crossed another creek, running from southwest to northeast; country rolling, soil good; in a number of places, however, the soil contains the mixture of fragments of lime stone; after leaving this, in a short time we crossed the dividing ridge between the Grand and the Osage rivers. The country from the summit of this ridge to the east and west appears hilly and broken, but to the south rolling, with some 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 gently rolling; no timber, but good soil; about half way between the two points is a detached hill of a conical form, to the right of course; between 6 and 800 yards circumference of base, and altitude 90 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 of which are rounded off; rolling prairie to the Osage river at point E, a few small streams or branches, with a few scattering trees on them, wind their courses toward this river in sight from course; before arriving at the bank of the Osage, we crossed a small branch at the edge of the timber; the wood is on the northern margin of the Osage, at this point in width half a mile,


the river 60 or 70 yards wide, water clear, banks 25 or 30 feet in height, and composed of the rich alluvial soil of the country to irregular depths, then succeeds 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, appears to be from W. N. W. to E. S. E. The width of timber varies on this stream from a half to two miles; the soil near and in the vicinity of the river is of the best quality.

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 is at this time easily forded, being quite low; a few hundred yards from the point, at which we struck the opposite bank, enter prairie in the valley running to the river; small hills to left of course, which divide the waters of the main Osage from another branch three or four miles south; its junction with the main stream is four or five miles from the place where we forded the river; continuing three miles, again strike the Osage; a high craggy bluff at this point; some timber 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 the bluff, 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 in which ran a dry creek with a few scattering trees; its course is from E. to W.; some hills on the south side of this creek; kept down the creek some distance, and crossed at a point of hills on the east; about a mile S. W. of this point we struck the creek, and passed up it about half a mile; on the north side of this stream there are some high hills, the summits of which are bold; large masses of limestone in layers, projecting a short distance in some places over the sides of the hills; at this point there is another beautiful grove of timber; the course of creek appears to be from W. S. W. to E.N.E. to the Osage; the soil generally good. The creek just mentioned is 25 or 30 yards wide, and banks 15 or 20 feet high; 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 bottom of this branch; there is a range of hills to left during the whole distance, points of which frequently come within a short distance of the creek, but sometimes recede to such distances as to form extensive valleys and bottoms.


These bottoms and valleys are generally well timbered, particularly the former; the summits and sides of the hills are generally capped with large uncovered beds, or rather masses of limestone, the layers of which are horizontal; they are in height from 50 to 150 feet; the sides are mostly covered with the usual kinds of upland timber, such as post-oak, black jack, &c.; the country at some distance from the creek is prairie, hilly, and broken; rendered so by the numerous ravines or drains which serve to carry off the water from the prairie to the creek mentioned above, which we ascended. About three miles below G crossed the creek to the west side, and proceeded about 300 yards to prairie; this is rolling, which continues for a great distance; in fact, as far as the eye can distinguish any object, the horizon bounding the view; the soil of this valley is of the first quality; it is also very good in all the prairie country in this vicinity, 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 of the 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 between these two points; branch courses from W. to E., soil varying, near the branch good, 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 timber on the west side of it at this point; the east side is hilly and broken, with some timber on points of ridges, as well as on the numerous tributaries of this branch; the creek here takes an easterly direction; little or no timber on the branches leading to it from west, continuing seven or eight miles, and pass the dividing ridge between the waters of the Osage and Neosho; country rolling; the soil mixed with numerous small and large fragments of limestone, flint, and gravel, &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; a little 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 course both to right and left; some sandstone of a reddish cast was found here, mixed in beds of limestone; soil generally good; crossed the creek to west side again, where there is 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; entered prairie, rolling in all directions to No. 1, except in the valley of the creek which we passed; this runs to the left nearly parallel with course. The soil here, as well as for some distance back, in many places, is mixed, as has been before stated, with limestone 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 to the 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 a conical hill north side of the creek; half a mile below the crossing place it wound around with course, running parallel with it; face of the country nearly level to the S. and E. side of this water course for a mile or two, then changes to rolling three miles; crossed a creek running east, joining the former on right, a short distance below; tributary of the Neosho; half a mile further, continuing one mile from this creek, we struck the Neosho river; coming in from the N. W., rolling prairie to left, on east of river; to point I the soil very rocky in some places near the margin; 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 the country, from this as far on as the Osage Agency, is rolling; a few miles east of the river, between these two points, there are several small creeks tributaries of the Neosho; two miles from I, there is one running general direction N. N. E. to S. S. W., on which is a grove 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 is another, 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 of timber; the face of the country between these creeks varies from level pieces of land 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 following kinds, viz : black and white oak, overcup oak, walnut, hickory, hackberry, red and slippery elm, black and honey locust, lynn, ash, a little cotton wood, and near the margin, birch, willow, and sycamore; soil between the two points mentioned generally good; the Osage Agency is on the west side of the river, on a moder-


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

The Neosho river at the agency is between 50 and 60 yards in width; the height of the bank varies from 15 to 25 feet on the east side; the bluff bank is of much greater height, and is composed of sandstone of various colors, generally of a light grey cast, often red. The bed of the river is gravel, the water clear; the depth at this season 3#189; to 4 feet at the point mentioned above. In the bluff, on the western side of the river, there is a formation of stone coal; it contains a great deal of bitumen; when burnt, gives out a dark smoke; burns with a reddish brown flame; in fact, it appears to possess the properties of the coal which is found in such abundance in the vicinity of Pittsburg, Pa. The specimen obtained was from near the surface; of course not so good as that which is more deeply imbedded. The extent of this formation is not known, but it is probable that it extends to a great distance in this country, as it will be seen, as we advance, that this is not the only place it is to [be] met with. The sandstone here appears to predominate, and doubtless from this as far as the expedition proceeded 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 a rolling prairie country. [70] About three miles from the former there is a creek running to the Neosho on left, with a few scattering trees; east, half a mile this 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 drains leading down to the river; soil good. Timber on Neosho from #189; mile to 2 in width.

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 forks just above this point; half a mile below it joins the Neosho; a few scattering trees on it; on the points of the ridges which make to it above the forks, there is some post oak and black jack; continuing 3 miles crossed another creek with some 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 several hollows or drains which lead to the Neosho on left; from this, S. W. for 5 or 6 miles, to a creek called the


River of Reptiles at K [J.?]. [71] The general course of this creek appears to be from N. W. to S. E., and heads opposite the Osage Agency; it is about 20 yards wide, banks of clay 15 or 20 feet high. Throughout the season there is always some water in this creek; but at this time, at the point we passed it, it was not running. There is a handsome grove of timber on this creek, from 100 yards to half a mile in width. The general face of the country between the two last points is rolling; but as it approaches the river it becomes somewhat hilly and broken, many ravines running from the prairie to river having this effect, and consequently producing this difference in appearance. Sand and limestone are frequently met with in these ravines, and often exposed in the prairie; soil generally good. The distance of point J. from the Neosho river is 5 miles; the country 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; crossed the "Riviere du Bate," or River of Reptiles. The bed of this river at this point, for about 300 yards, is com posed wholly of stone coal, of the same quality and appearance as that which is found at the Osage Agency; probably a continuation of the same formation; about 4 miles from the point at which we struck and crossed the river of Reptiles to the Neosho; from this proceeded over a very level prairie of 3 miles, and crossed a small dry creek. The soil of this prairie is not 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 all directions, for 7 or 8 miles. Met with a grove of timber on a ridge composed, as usual, of post oak and black jack; continuing 2 miles, crossed the head waters of the 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 over a gently rolling prairie as before; passed a number of conical hills on left of course. 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 the Neosho river, at this part of the creek, stone coal was again met with, which warrants the conclusion that although there is a great scarcity of timber in S.


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

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

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 2 miles, at which place there are some hills, with timber; before arriving at the timber the course changed to S., leaving the timber to left; country gently rolling in our course, and to the creek on our right, about one mile distant; on the left it is variable, rolling and hilly. Three miles from point K, crossed a branch running to the right; 1 mile further crossed a deep hollow, at the head of which there are large rocks of sandstone; its course is to the right. Continuing 3 or 4 miles, we meet with timbered hills, the timber of the usual kind found off from 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 the Neosho to the E. and S. E., for 7 or 8 miles. For 5 or 6 miles the country is moderately rolling to the point at which we crossed the "Plank cabin Creek" to the west side; the creek at this point is about 20 yards wide, water low; the timber is half a mile in width. At this place we met with the first cane brake since our departure from the line; it is in small quantities, however; and in dimensions, as to height, &c., it will scarcely bear comparison with that found 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 to left, red sandstone is found in the banks and bed of this creek. The country between 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 you approach the second, hilly and broken. Between the last branch and the point at which we struck the Neosho, at the mouth of Slippery Rock creek, [73] a distance of 10 or 12 miles in our course, country gently rolling. To the left, at variable distances, from half to 2 miles, there was timber on the summit and sides of the ridges, which make down to


the Cabin de Planche, which discharges itself into the Neosho, 2 or 3 miles above the mouth of Slippery Rock; to the right, for some distance, gently rolling, then hilly and broken; to the west, 7 or 8 miles, is seen a ridge of well timbered hills; 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 up which it runs is very narrow, so that the hills making down to the water's edge are steep; its course is over a smooth rocky bottom. There are seen in the banks of some creeks in this vicinity alternate layers of sand and limestone, of depths from 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 side of the Neosho river. [74] During our course from the last point mentioned to the trading establishment, the hills of the Neosho were continually in sight, containing, for short distances back from the stream, timber on the right of course; until we arrived at Cheauteau's, a number of isolated conical hills presented themselves near the course, the sides of which were barren, the rich soil being washed from them; still further beyond these hills there is a range of timbered hills, forming a ridge, extending from N. W. to S. E. About 1#189; miles before arriving at the latter point, crossed in a valley a small creek making to the 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 a salt spring, rising from a limestone rock, covering from 1 to 2 acres; several openings 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 is perceptible to any one on approaching the spring. The quantity of salt which this water would yield is not known, as no experiment of that kind has been made; but it 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 of the country between these points, after ascending the hills from the Neosho, is nearly level; the timber on these hills, along on our course, is seen, and become more 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 side of course a few hundred yards distant; the one on left of a conical, and that on right an oblong figure, both from 70 to 100 feet in height; on the right of course, for some distance, is seen a number of hills of different forms-a range of timbered hills on right, which are in the vicinity of Pond creek, on its west side, dividing the waters of the Neosho and Verdigris; the general course of creek appears to be from N. W. to S. E. Frequent beds of lime and sandstone abound at this place, as seen on the summit and sides of the hills; the former appears 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 the country; this passes over a bed of limestone; from this creek we passed over a level prairie for one and a half miles, and crossed a point of the ridge, on which 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, the face of the country is very rolling, rather inclining to hilly; some small groves of timber are met with in many places. From the summit of the west ridge, we descended into the valley of the Neosho; continuing one and a half miles, passed a creek at L, flowing over a bed of compact limestone of a blueish color; banks very low; on them there is a beautiful grove of timber, more abundant, and of a better 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 and broken.

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 few hundred yards, there is a high ridge of sandstone, large masses of which are detached. One mile from L, crossed a 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; from creek to the Union Missionary Establishment, distance four miles, a rolling and rather hilly country; timber, in some places, increasing as it approaches nearer the river. The mission is situated at the head of the valley to the Neosho, [78] in a S. S. E. direction,


about a half mile; before arriving at the station, we crossed a small ravine with clear 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 of Missouri; after leaving this valley, and advancing to the Creek Agency on the Verdigris, there is a rolling prairie country, with the exception of a creek called Round Bottom creek, on which is a small quantity of timber; during the course, however, the timber on the Neosho was always in sight, and generally from half to three miles distant on left; the right is all rolling prairie; at the distance of eight or ten miles from the agency, we were able to perceive the timber on the Verdigris R.; before arriving at the agency, however, we met with timber composed principally of post oak and black jack; at the edge of the timber there is a small creek, which we crossed. The agency is situated immediately on the eastern bank of the Verdigris, three or four miles from its mouth; there is a high sandstone bluff or hill just below, and on the same side with the agency. [80]

The river is here between 60 and 70 yards in width; the water not so clear as that of the Neosho; the western bank appears to be a mixture of sand, clay, and gravel; this is the highest point to which steam or keel boats ascend, the navigation being interrupted by a fall in the river 6 or 700 yards above this point; the fall is from five to six feet; it is said that large quantities of stone 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 to Cantonment Gibson, the country, to within one or two miles of the latter, is gently rolling, when it becomes nearly level, being the margin or bottom land of the Neosho; on this land, as well as on the 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 on the course between these two points; they extend but a short distance to the right, but continue out to the left into the extensive prairie between the waters of the Neosho and Verdigris; the bottom spoken of above is well timbered; about two miles from the agency, there is a small brook of clear water running to the right, which heads in the hills of the Neosho. Cantonment Gib-


son is situated immediately on the east bank of the Neosho, three or four miles above 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 seen when the river is deepest; it is at this point, at this time, from six to eight feet in depth; the river here is 170 or 180 yards in width; the soil between these points is generally very good; that of the bottom is rendered, in some degree, useless, on account of the annual Spring freshets, which at that season rise, 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 one and half miles below the mouth of the 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 struck and forded the river, is about five hundred yards in width; the banks 25 or 30 feet in height, and composed of a reddish brown colored sand and clay; on the south side, just below the point at which we left the stream, there is a bluff, composed of alternate layers of slate and clay; the layers are very thin; the latter is mixed with coal; both banks of the 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 the bottom on the south side is very rich, of a reddish cast near the river; the prairie on this side approaches near the Arkansas; continuing half mile, some hills on right; at the distance of two and a half miles from the river, crossed a creek running from S. W. by S. to N. E., by N.; [81] some low and scrubbly timber is found on this creek; the country is rather hilly on the north side of the branch-some of them timberedthe summits and sides of many having sandstone rocks upon them; this may be considered exclusively a sandstone country; after passing on seven or eight miles, we crossed two or three branches running to left, on the margin of which, there is some timber; these branches are all tributaries to the Arkansas. South of this, there is a range of rocky hills, extending from N. W. to S. E.; we ascended these, and from their summit the descent was gentle to what is called


"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 branch enters from the north, passed up the creek one mile, and crossed it at M; here another 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 on each side, to the distance of three miles; these hills are from 150 to 200 feet in height; there is more timber at and near here than at any place between this and 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. on Darden's creek, we passed up the valley nearly due S. for 3 miles; high hills of sandstone on each side, and at the head of the valley, distant apart about half a mile, and joining to the north. About 1 mile after ascending from the valley, we entered prairie again; the soil between point N. on this not good; the principal timber on ridges post oak and black jack. Proceeded three miles over a gently rolling prairie, and recrossed Darden's creek, 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 of prairie as was just mentioned, having on right, for 4 or 5 miles, about 1 mile from course, a ridge of timber; soil variable; course changed S. W.; entered timber, 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 a view of the hills beyond the north fork of the Canadian; valley from this point to river generally timbered; soil, since entering the wood, very poor, mixed with great quantities of sand. Two and a half miles from this to the N. fork of Canadian. On the north side of this fork the country falls off gently to the river, but on the S. side it is hilly and broken in some degree; the hills on the N. side, or rather the high ground, contain the usual kind of timber, viz. post oak and black jack; but near the river, and on its margin, there is black and white oak,


overcupped white oak, black walnut, hickory, hackberry, mulberry, persimmon, cherry tree, red and slippery elm, black and honey locust, ash, sassafras, cotton wood, 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 70 yards in width; the bank on the N. 45 or 50 feet high, of sand and clay; the water 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 point where we forded the N. Fork, at this season there is a fall over sandstone rock of from three to four feet perpendicular; an island containing timber is on our right, about 10 yards from N. bank.)"

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

December 4, 1828. Course, on setting out from point N., S. 70 E. half a mile; struck the fork again. There is a great bend between this and point N.; country nearly 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, of clay, sand, &c. About 100 yards from this bank we passed a deep creek, which is very bad, on account of the clay of which its banks are composed being very thin, 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. After crossing the creek last mentioned, at the distance of 2#189; miles recrossed this creek, which had wound its way round, and was running here from W. to E.; on its north side there is a high rocky hill approaches near the creek, from 100 to 125 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 miles from the N. fork; arrived in view of the main Canadian, on a high commanding hill or bluff, which overlooks this stream; it is situated about three-quarters of a mile from the river, and is near 200 feet perpendicular, containing large masses of red sandstone, in horizontal layers. Course W. for half a mile, at which point we forded the main branch of the Canadian; its direction here is from W.; it is about 210 yards in width, the color of its water corresponding with that on the N. fork; the banks are very low


generally at and near the point where we struck it, composed of fine sand and clay, of a reddish cast. This river, like the Missouri, appears to be wearing away 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 from 2#189; to 3 feet in depth; soil in valley about this point very rich, loose, and mellow, and, similar to that on the N. fork, is of a dark reddish brown appearance. The mouth of the S. fork of the Canadian was about 1 mile above the point 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 miles in width. There is a range of hills, probably 150 or 200 feet in height, containing large masses of sandstone. We ascended the ridge, which approaches near the river at this point; it continues to the S. fork, and forms a bluff on its eastern side. On this ridge we continued for 1 mile; this ridge is mostly covered with post oak; from this we descended into a valley, the direction of which is W. from the S. fork; it is surrounded with high, craggy hills; in this valley there is an extensive marsh, probably three-quarters of a mile in diameter, completely covered with a kind of flag; there was a range of hills on the right and left of course; about 1#189; miles from this marsh, another valley was crossed, in which ran a creek from the E. winding round some hills, and passing it in front; passed up the S. side of this creek, leaving the hills on our right, with but little timber upon them, and at 1#189; miles from the point where we struck it, crossed over to the opposite side, (N.) high hills to the left; passed between the ridge and a fork of the creek just mentioned, the S. fork running towards the S. E. This latter range continued on left for many miles, but at 2 miles' distance from the last point we passed 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 in all directions; on the summits and sides of all these hills there is a large quantity of sandstone rocks; the soil to-day variable, in the valleys generally good, mixed with sand; the timber, both on the high and low grounds, is the same as 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 head waters of the small creek mentioned; passed alternately through timber and prairie, the latter of small extent. Soil middling, in some places pretty good; a range of hills 1 mile to the left; the whole distance on the right the hills were at a greater distance; they are not so high as those passed over on the 5th; from the head waters of this creek, which is distant from P 5 miles, descended into a valley 1#189; miles in width, mostly prairie; near the head, and for 3 or 4 miles down it, high sandstone hills on each side, timbered; 200 feet in height; the valley, at the distance of 5 or 6 miles from its head, becomes timbered, its course being E. N. E.; mostly post oak, black oak, and some hickory, though very scarce for some distance. A creek puts down this valley, which increases after continuing 5 or 6 miles of its course. Some pine was met with on the sides of the hills, descending to the valley on the N. side; the hills on the left, 6 or 7 miles 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, the last 8 miles from (head of the valley) it. About 1#189; miles from this point crossed a branch running S. by E. to N. by W., joining the former before entering the Canadian. Country rolling, soil variable, not good; 3 miles from last branch enter prairie; hills without timber, on right of course, half a mile distant; 3 miles 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; soil generally good, mixed, as usual, with a great portion of sand; timbered with post oak, until it approaches the river, then black oak, &c.; about 1 mile below where 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 Arkansas and 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 Q N. E. on the E. side of creek; on arriving at its summit, continued in an easterly direction for 1 mile; at this point, course changed to N. E.; descended the 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 are the hills of the main Canadian; lands poor; on passing into a valley we perceived the 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. small creek running to E.; at the distance of 3 miles from the top of hill struck the Arkansas river, course of it at this point S. E.; we passed up the banks of the river 3 miles, through cane brake, &c. for 3 miles, in order to find a fording place, as the shore at the first point at which we struck the stream was quicksand; the bottom land not of any great width; the whole distance from Q to R is over high rocky hills of sandstone, which border on the Canadian river on the N., and the Arkansas on the E.; the S. margin of the former river is of much greater width than that on the western side of the former, near the mouth of the Canadian; lands on the bottom of both streams very rich; the Arkansas at this point is 600 yards wide, but at this season the greatest part of the channel is sand bar, owing to the low state of the water; there are some high hills between the Canadian and Arkansas rivers, doubtless the dividing ridge between those waters.

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 the sides of hills in a N. W. direction for 3 miles; these run close to the river; from thence into a bottom 3 or 400 yards in width, of cane generally, and timber common to the margins of the Arkansas; crossed this river 1#189; miles below the mouth of the Canadian; course changed N. through cane brake for 3 miles, heavy timbered, and rich lands, on rising to the high lands back; course N. E. for #189; mile, crossed a creek from E. by N. to W. by S.; there are some hills bordering on this branch; where we crossed, it forked. From this the country was rolling, the soil is good; at 21/s miles from creek crossed the Illinois, which is about 50 or 60 yards wide; a creek empties into it at this point from the S. E.; the water of this river is clear, 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 a prairie, a ridge of hills on right and left, approaching and receding from course, until we arrived at the Salt Works on the Illinois; [85] these hills encompass the valley of 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 the river. At the Salt Works there is a creek running to the waters of the Illinois from the hills in a N. W. course; these works are, or are said to have been, very productive; 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 hill of sandstone in large and small fragments; from the summit our course was nearly level for 5 or 6 miles, but hilly to left near the Arkansas, which is distant 5 or 6 miles; timber here mostly of post oak and black jack, lands poor, distant 6 or 7 miles from the Salt works; descended and crossed a creek running to left. [86] This is a beautiful running stream, passing over a smooth bed of sandstone which is in an inclined position, wanting 7 or 8°; to its being perpendicular to the surface; this rock is about 30 yards in width; crossing over it, we entered prairie on the N. side of creek; from this we ascended a long but gradual rise through poor post oak and rocky lands, until we arrived within 3 miles of Cantonment Gibson. Here we descended from a high rocky hill into a valley down which runs another creek from the N., which is distant from Gibson 2 miles; [87] small prairie between the foot of 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 the same as that passed over on the route of the party to the Canadian, until we arrived at the Osage Agency, where we crossed the Neosho, and took the direct route to Harmony Mission on the Osage, 70 miles from the Agency. The courses were as 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, after leaving the margin of the Neosho, passed through a nearly level country (prairie) except where interrupted by the timber of the small tributaries of the Neosho and Osage; good soil for 8 or 10 miles, when we crossed a small creek with a little timber on its banks, running from N. to S. into another about 1 mile below to the right, which turned without course, and which has also on its banks a little timber; from this we continued over the same kind of prairie as before, and at the distance of 12 miles from the Agency crossed "Walnut creek," running from N. to S., and joining a branch on right, about 1 mile distant, continuing 4 miles to another over a prairie similar to the foregoing, 2 miles to a creek running from N. to S. like the former; these enter 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, very little timber is met with, the country being mostly prairie, soil varying; this prairie has been either level or gently rolling; to the left, at some distance off, the country appeared to be more rolling than at any point of course, but no timber; on our right, to creek, quite level; beyond, or on the S. side of the creek, wherever we had a view of the country, it presented the same appearance as that 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 the Neosho and Osage rivers; at highest point of this ridge but little timber is in sight, and that at great distance from course, distance 3 or 4 miles to the head waters of the "Manitau," [89] the course of which is from S. W. to N. E. at this point; some timber below where we crossed it; country here rather rolling; from this we continued on to the State line, over a rolling prairie, meeting on our route with considerable quantities of limestone, of an earthy appearance generally, on the rise from little brooks and drains of the country; the creek which 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 Historical Society. These are the only entries in McCoy's journal for the period of interest.
3. That is, the Chickasaw and the Choctaw. Luther Blake and the Creeks had arrived 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 the Choctaw.
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 during the War of 1812 and was appointed a lieutenant in the regular army. Later he and his brother James held the contract as sutlers to Jefferson Barracks. In 1815 he married Alzire, a daughter of Col. Pierre Menard.-Billon, Frederic L., Annals of 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 just returned. -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 as ten, 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 contribution to 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 7 or 8 Indians a a short time after, and strong hopes were entertained that the Chickasaws and Creek Indians would soon follow, when, to the great disappointment of M, a report spread that the Chickssaws, influenced and misled by some hostile & intriguing persons, had relinquished their intention immediately to proceed on the expedition, & had postponed their departure for the object. in view till next March. Gen. Clark immediately dispatched a person with instructions to proceed to those Indians and to endeavour to prevail on them to proceed without delay to St. Louis to join the rest of the party-but the messenger returned without the Indians, and confirmed by his report the fact of their refusal to proceed with the party till next March. A day or two before the return of the messenger, Mr Blake Indian Agent arrived with a few Creek Indians, and on hearing the result of the previous mission, expressed a hope of yet succeeding by his personal efforts to induce them to join the party at St. Louis.
Mr. Blake, accordingly, after a conference with Gen. Clark on the subject left here a few days since for the object in view and is expected to return in the course of three or four weeks.- The Rev. Mr McCoy influenced by an apprehension that the delay caused by awaiting the arrival of the Chickasaws, an event, under all the existing circumstances, uncertain, might create feelings of discontent and even opposition to the expedition among those Indians which he had brought with him, having obtained their assent by his promise to terminate the excursion at a certain time, and to return them to their families-thought it advisable to proceed with them on the expedition and did so on the 21st inst. He expressed to me a wish that I would accompany his small party, which I assured him I was ready to do, if Gen Clark would give me orders & instructions to that effect. I stated to him that I was directed by the war Dept. to report myself to Gen Clark superintendent of Indian affairs, and therefore considered myself to [be] entirely confined to the decision he Gen. Clark, should make on the subject. I called immediately on Gen. Clark, communicated to him the wish of Mr McCoy, and requested him, if he desired me to proceed with the party of McCoy, to furnish me with written instructions to that effect. He replied that he was not authorized to direct me to proceed with this small party and could therefore give no instructions on the subject.- Capt. Kennerly the gentleman appointed to conduct the party remains here waiting for the arrival of the other Indians.- I beg leave to solicit further instructions from the Department in the event of the near arrival of the Chickasaw Indians.- Gen. Clark, to whom, in obedience to my instructions from the Dept. I presented my account for travelling expenses from Washington to St. Louis, has directed me to defer the settlement thereof till my return to Washington. In addition to the sum of 200 Dollars received in Washington for my traveling expenses it has been necessary to draw on the Rev. Mr McCoy treasurer, the sum of One Hundred Dollars for defraying my expenses here for 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 the Boonslick road.
Wetmore, Gazetteer of Missouri, p. 269.
12. Isaac Van Bibber was born in Greenbriar county, Virginia, in 1771, the son of that Isaac Van Bibber who was killed at Point Pleasant in 1774. He was adopted and reared by Daniel Boone, came to Missouri with Nathan Boons in 1800, settled at Loutre Lick in 1815, and died in 1836.-Bryan, William S., and Rose, Robert, A History 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 Indian Missions (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 as ten, 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 contribution to 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 7 or 8 Indians a a short time after, and strong hopes were entertained that the Chickasaws and Creek Indians would soon follow, when, to the great disappointment of M, a report spread that the Chickssaws, influenced and misled by some hostile & intriguing persons, had relinquished their intention immediately to proceed on the expedition, & had postponed their departure for the object in view till next March. Gen. Clark immediately dispatched a person with instructions to proceed to those Indians and to endeavour to prevail on them to proceed without delay to St. Louis to join the rest of the party-but the messenger returned without the Indians, and confirmed by his report the fact of their refusal to proceed with the party till next March. A day or two before the return of the messenger, Mr Blake Indian Agent arrived with a few Creek Indians, and on hearing the result of the previous mission, expressed a hope of yet succeeding by his personal efforts to induce them to join the party at St. Louis.
Mr. Blake, accordingly, after a conference with Gen. Clark on the subject left here a few days since for the object in view and is expected to return in the course of three or four weeks.- The Rev. Mr McCoy influenced by an apprehension that the delay caused by awaiting the arrival of the Chickasaws, an event, under all the existing circumstances, uncertain, might create feelings of discontent and even opposition to the expedition among those Indians which he had brought with him, having obtained their assent by his promise to terminate the excursion at a certain time, and to return them to their families-thought it advisable to proceed with them on the

11. Loutre Lick or Van Bibber's was 68 miles west of Saint Charles on the Boonslick road. Wetmore, Gazetteer of Missouri, p. 269.
12. Isaac Van Bibber was born in Greenbrier county, Virginia, in 1771, the son of that Isaac Van Bibber who was killed at Point Pleasant in 1774. He was adopted and reared by Daniel Boone, came to Missouri with Nathan Boone in 1800, settled at 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 Indian Missions (Washington and New York, 1840), p. 350.
15. Smith's was 10 miles west of Arrow Rock.-Wetmore, Gazetteer of Missouri, 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 (McCoy MSS., Kansas Historical Society)

Independence, 280 miles west of St. Louis, Nov. 2d 1828.
My dear Son Calvin
I went on tour of 49 days with the Potawatomies & Ottawas, and sent them home well pleased with the country, and the people. The Chickasaws & Choctaws reached St. Louis the 13th Oct. and they with the Creeks who had previously arrived are thus far on their way into the western wilderness. I left St. Louis the 22d Oct. Am now about leaving the white settlements. Our whole company amount to 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 on Arkansas river, and perhaps early in December. I shall then be about 500 miles from St. Louis to which place I expect to return by land.
I am favoured with health, and am encouraged to hope that I shall be instrumental in promoting the welfare of the Indians, and in providing places of useful-benevolent labour for my dear children.
I trust you-your sisters, and your mother and all your brothers & sisters from Carey have gotten together in Ohio or Kentucky. I feel great anxiety on account of you all-not knowing where to think you all are. I pray God to bless you all wherever you all maybe. Try to be virtuous & wise, my dear son. Be not uneasy about me- The Lord is so kind to me in these lands of strangers that I am 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 our Indian business. Do endeavour to comfort your good mother. I have deposited my accounts with James Kennedy, St. Louis. I carry with me a duplicate of the same.
[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 way to Washington with a delegation from his tribe.
20. The three documents in this section are reproduced from the McCoy MSS., Kansas Historical Society. The first and third were printed, with covering documents, in House of Representatives Report No. 87, 20 Cong., 2 Sess.
21. Of the documents listed only Nos. 1, 4 and 6 have survived. The National Archives and the clerk of the House of Representatives report that the map is not to be found. McCoy drew the map July 29-August 5 ; it was 2 feet, 7 inches, by 3 feet (Barnes, "McCoy's Journal, 1828," pp. 235, 236). The nearest period map for the Indian country is probably that accompanying House of Representatives Report No. 474 (1834), 23 Cong, 1 Sess. (Ser. No. 263.) This printed map may have been based on McCoy's manuscript map (see the Report, p. 76; also Henry 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 McCoy Collection of the Kansas 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 the party of Creeks, Choctaws & Chickasaws about to explore the country west of the 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 as assistant.
The outfit for the expedition, has been furnished under my directions, and the amt. for which, will be handed to you, approved by me. When the objects of the expedition shall have been accomplished it will be left to the discretion of Capt. Kennerly & yourself to make the best disposition of the property belonging to the outfit.
I have no information as to compensation to any of the party, except those engaged 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 of making themselves comfortable on their journey home, after exploring the country pointed out to Capt. Kennerly.
In the objects of expenditure, & the limits of it, you will of course, be governed by your instructions, and knowledge of the general design of the Government in making the expedition,-having reference to the comfort & content of the Indians, and amount of the appropriation made to cover the expenses of the undertaking.
Entertaining a high opinion of your sagacity & powers of observation, it is desireable that you should keep a Journal of the route, that the Government may have 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 than would be reported by the topographists; and their report, I knew, would necessarily not be such a condensed statement, relative to the suitableness of the country for settlement, as the case demanded. I therefore made a formal report, although it was not really my province to do so. This, I had reason to suppose, was unexpected by some connected with the matter; and Colonel McKenney himself, who was at the head of Indian affairs, intimated that it was informal. I nevertheless felt the necessity of the measure. . . ."-McCoy, History of Baptist Indian Missions, p. 871.
25. Since the journey from Carey in Michigan to Saint Louis and the first tour west 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. Another summary, longer than the present one, will be found in McCoy, History of Baptist 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. Washington Hood (1808-1840) was born in Philadelphia, the son of John McClellan Hood and Eliza Forebaugh. He was commissioned second lieutenant in 1827 (Dictionary of American Biography, v. IX, pp. 194, 195). Since John Bell is named as assistant 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 in their party were Garland Lincecum, James Davis, and William D. King (Foreman, Grant, Indians & Pioneers [1930], p. 309, Footnote 32). The Choctaw were Tuppenhoma (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 Indian Missions, p. 351); see, also, Footnote 26, above. The negro belonged to Levi Colbert (McCoy, History, p. 349).
35. "We had proceeded about five miles, when, riding briskly over the prairie to prevent a pack horse from escaping, my horse fell with me, and rolled on to my foot and leg. I was a good deal injured on the side that had been dashed on the earth, but was able after a while to resume my journey, though I suffered much pain 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., Kansas 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 travelling slowly to the West near the line of Missouri. We shall not go far west. My health is 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 I must 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- trust in 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 Hood and Bell, below. McCoy's statement is misleading because the party struck the Neosho not merely 14 miles west of the Osage crossing but also more than 70 miles south.
39. In his History of Baptist Indian Missions (p. 360) McCoy mentioned meeting 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 Historical Society): Nov. 18, 1828.

Dear Lykins
I have proceeded on this tour from Missouri river southwardly, a few miles west of the state of Missouri, as far as Neosho river, where the Osages generally reside. I am now in their villages, 30 miles west of Missouri state, 110 miles south 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 far our present company of Indians do not like the country. We shall proceed southwardly 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 it will 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 suppose exceedingly desirous to see you all- Could I know that you are all comfortably situated it would lessen my sorrows greatly. I pray that it may be so- I will hope it is so.
I almost forgot to say that on the 9th inst when galloping my horse to turn another into the way my horse fell with me on a smooth burnt prairie, and rolled on to my left foot and leg above the knee-dashing me severely on my left arm. My left limbs & side were considerably injured. I was bled in my arm. I have continued travelling, but am still lame in my left arm & shoulder and leg. My tour 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 expected Rice & Josephus. I. M. [Addressed] Mr. Josephus McCoy
Fayette County,

41. "On the 20th, we pitched our tents near the village of the Chief called White Hair. A large long fire of logs was made, at which our company was joined in council by about twenty Osage chiefs, and principal men. The usual ceremonies of shaking hands, smoking, and speech making, were entered upon, and continued until night, when all parties agreeing that peace speeches ought not to be made in the dark, we adjourned till the following day.

"That night the coldness of the weather increased to severity. Our encampment was in 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 very uncomfortable. The weather was so severe on the following day, that it was late before the council convened. In the mean time, we were invited to a feast of boiled buffalo meat, in the house of the chief Belle Ouizo. In the absence of chairs, we all became seated on the floor, when bowls of boiled meat were placed before us, and each used his own knife and his own fingers. Immediately on the completion of this, we were taken to the house of the chief, White Hair, to partake 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 the house of the chief, White Hair. The result was a reciprocity of good feelings and fair 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 carry with them, as a matter of curiosity. With some ceremony, an Osage warrior came forward in council, and presented the principal Choctaw chief, with the scalp of a Pawnee. The acceptance was followed by a brief speech in behalf of the Osage nation, in which the orator argued that, as the Choctaws had accepted of a scalp at the hands of the former, which they had taken from an enemy, the Choctaws, as a nation, were bound by the customs of Indians to espouse their interests, and that the Osages would henceforward understand that the Choctaws, about to become their neighbours, would also become their allies in war. This turn of the affair was as unwelcome as it was unexpected to the Choctaws, who made no reply."-Ibid., pp. 857, 558.
43. McCoy gave much space in his book to Osage customs and folklore.-Ibid., pp. 855-865.
44. Accompanied by Belle Oiseau, "distinguished [Osage] chief," the party left the 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).
50. "COLUMBUS, January 22, 1829.

We have written on to you by Mr. Blake, who carried us on as an exploring party to examine the country west of the Mississippi. We have travelled a great way with Mr. Blake, and are glad to find him our friend, who has studied our interest, and has been friendly in supplying our wants. We have known him long, and have ever found him a friend to our people, and we had the utmost confidence in our great Father when he appointed Mr. Blake to accompany us. We love him, and we wish our great Father to appoint him to carry our people west of the Mississippi. We have now arrived among 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 the friend of our people. We know he would take care of our women and orphan children, and they have confidence in [him] more than they have in strangers. Our great Father has appointed the best man to go with his children (because they knew him, and have not been deceived in him.) We like the country, and want our great Father to appoint him to go with our people and settle the country that our great Father has given us on the west of the Mississippi. When we arrived home, a great 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 children should 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, the delegation, arrived at the Chatahoochie in good health.
"I certify that this is an exact representation of the Chiefs, as interpreted to me, 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 this moment 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 Neuhoff Dorothy, ^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 Historical Society is a note that clearly credits this plan to A. P. Chouteau; it is entitled "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 between Osages, and Camanches do other Indians of the west, would be to send a delegation from 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 the proper time- Leave Missouri State at say Kansas river, do turn round south via Arkansas.- Time necessary, 4 or b months- Would meet one party- Then send to another &c--- Would likely meet some ten days journey west of Missouri State 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 Footnote 74).
60. There were probably two maps: McCoy's (see Footnote 21) and one made by the topographers. Neither has been found.
61. According to McCoy (p. 416, above) the party left the camp on the Missouri line 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 branch of Big Blue, and the latter. Little Blue lies in Missouri to the east of Big Blue; the party is clearly to the west of the latter stream.
65. This mileage total is incorrect. It should read 51 #189; To correct succeeding mileage totals, always add ten.
66. According to McCoy they crossed the Osage or Marais des Cygnes river about 20 miles west of the Missouri line (see Footnote 37). That figure, with Hood's mileage, 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 little above the present town of Erie.
70. The party remained four days in this neighborhood. White Hair's village was on 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 present Shaw, Neosho county.
68. Probably Canville creek entering the Neosho from the left below present Shaw.
71. Labette creek. Corrupted from La Bete; a French translation which preserves an Osage legend. The party was apparently now traveling down the road from the Osage agency to the Creek agency and Fort Gibson. This camp must have been west or northwest of present Oswego.
72. Cabin creek (as it is now called) enters the Neosho about 12 miles below present Vinita, Okla. The crossing wasp robably made above Little Cabin creek and near Vinita.
73. This must be Rock creek which enters the Neosho from the right (west) about three 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 Mayes county) to enter the Neosho from the right (west).
77. Possibly Choteau creek which passes to the north of present Choteau, Mayes county, to enter the Neosho two or three miles below Pryor creek.
78. Union mission was a little above and opposite to Spring creek which enters the Neosho from the left (east).
79. Brush creek.
80. The Western Creek agency was housed in buildings bought from A. P. Chouteau in 1827.
81. Coata creek enters the Arkansas almost opposite Bayou Menard.
82. Which now appears on Geological Survey maps as Dirty creek. It enters the Arkansas 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 Canadian about six miles above the North Fork. The party was now about 66 miles west of Arkansas, 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.