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On this day in Lewis & Clark history...

The keelboat crosses to the western shore of the Mississippi River where Lewis declines an offer to trade his dog Seaman for 3 beaver furs. Lewis is surprised at the size of a Blue catfish caught by the men and measures it in great detail.

From the journals...

one of the Shawnees a respectable looking Indian offered me three beverskins for my dog
of course there was no bargan

Meriwether Lewis


Life-size statue of a Newfoundland dog

Photo taken with permission at Fort Mandan.

On our return which was at 5 m after 1 Oclock we were a little surprised at the apparent size of a Catfish which the men had caught in our absence altho we had been previously accustomed to see those of from thirty to sixty pounds weight
I have been informed that these fish have been taken in various parts of the Ohio & mississippi weighing from 175 to 200 lbs. weight which from the evidince of the suject above mentioned I have no doubt is authentic—

Meriwether Lewis

Blue catfish, Ictalurus furcatus

Drawing of a catfish with long whiskers

Drawing by Edgar R. Waite circa 1917.