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On this day in Lewis & Clark history...

The men wake the Captains this Christmas morning by firing their guns. The men celebrate the day with special food, rum, and dancing. The only Indians that witness the celebrations are the three wives of the Expedition's interpreters.

From the journals...

I was awakened before Day by a discharge of 3 platoons from the Party and the french, the men merrily Disposed, I give them all a little Taffia and permited 3 Cannon fired, at raising Our flag

William Clark

Fort Mandan flag

15-star flag on a pole at Fort Mandan

Photo taken with permission at Fort Mandan.

we ushred in the morning with a discharge of the Swivvel, and one round of Small arms of all the party. then another from the Swivel. then Capt. Clark presented a glass of brandy to each man of the party. we hoisted the american flag and each man had another Glass of brandy. the men prepared one of the rooms and commenced dancing. at 10 oC. we had another glass of brandy, at one a gun was fired as a Signal for diner. half past two another gun was fired to assemble at the dance, and So we kept it up in a jovel manner untill Eight oC. at night, all without the compy. of the female Seck

Joseph Whitehouse

Glass and keg tap

Clear glass with dark rum and keg tap