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On this day in Lewis & Clark history...

On the Marias River, Lewis waits one last day for the weather to clear. Near the Yellowstone, Pryor is herding the horses towards Fort Mandan. Clark stops at Pompey's Pillar. Gass and Ordway continue hauling canoes to Lower Portage Camp.

on the Northerly Side of the river high romantic Clifts approach & jut over the water for Some distance both above and below.

William Clark

Looking north from Pompey's Pillar

Cliffs on the north shore of the Yellowstone River

at 4 P M arived at a remarkable rock Situated in an extensive bottom on the Stard. Side of the river & 250 paces from it.
this rock I ascended and from it's top had a most extensive view in every direction. This rock which I shall Call Pompy's Tower is 200 feet high and 400 paces in secumphrance and only axcessable on one Side which is from the N. E the other parts of it being a perpendicular Clift of lightish Coloured gritty rock

William Clark

Pompey's Pillar

Large rock of light colored grit

on the top there is a tolerable Soil of about 5 or 6 feet thick Covered with Short grass. The Indians have made 2 piles of Stone on the top of this Tower.

William Clark

Looking southeast from the top of Pompey's Pillar

Grassy hilltop overlooking a broad valley

The nativs have ingraved on the face of this rock the figures of animals &c. near which I marked my name and the day of the month & year.

William Clark

Historical engravings on Pompey's Pillar

William Clark July 25, 1806 engraved into a rock

Photo by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management.

a range of high land Covered with pine appears to run in a N. & S. direction approaching the river below.

William Clark

Looking north from Pompey's Pillar

Hill above the river with several small pine trees

I employed my Self in getting pieces of the rib of a fish which was Semented within the face of the rock    this rib is inchs in Secumpherance about the middle    it is 3 feet in length tho a part of the end appears to have been broken off    I have Several peces of this rib

William Clark

Hell Creek formation

Limestone cliffs along the Yellowstone River

as if the fates were against me my chronometer from some unknown cause stoped today, when I set her to going she went as usual.

Meriwether Lewis


Historical reproduction of a period clock

At night we arrived at Portage river, and then had four canoes there safe.

Patrick Gass

Lower Portage Camp

Dried gumbo mud above a river