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Natural HistoryMammals - LargeAmerican Bison - Bos bisonBison in the Journals
Indian Style
Buffalo Road

Bones of the Buffaloe

On August 2, 1805, the party was well into the valley of the Jefferson River, south of the Three Forks of the Missouri. With mounting anticipation, they were approaching the long-sought Continental Divide, but Lewis expressed his disappointment in one certainty:

The bones of the buffaloe and their excrement of an old date are to be met with in every part of the valley, but we have long since lost all hope of meeting with that animal in these mountains.

Indeed, there were to be no more buffalo feasts until their return to the east side of the Rockies, 16 months later.

--Joseph Mussulman

Indian Style
Buffalo Road

From Discovering Lewis & Clark ®, http://www.lewis-clark.org © 1998-2014
by The Lewis and Clark Fort Mandan Foundation, Washburn, North Dakota.
Journal excerpts are from The Journals of the Lewis and Clark Expedition, edited by Gary E. Moulton
13 vols. (Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 1983-2001)