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the profile view showing the elevations rifles and powder and lead, and some at which the specimens were found, and store of presents to conciliate Indians, the geographical map showing the locali- constitute the equipment. The men ties from which they come. “ The astronomical observations, taken woodsmen trained to the perils and

are engaged for the occasion-backwith good instruments, have been tested, hardship of mountain and prairie life, three-fold computation,-one by Professor able and willing to hold existence by Walker, of Philadelphia, whose as

the tenure of the rifle, to find their daily tronomical reputation is so great; another food before they eat it, the earth for by Mr. Joseph C. Hubbard, a promising their nightly bed, some bushes and a young mathematician from Connecticut; blanket their shelter from “the peltings the third by myself; so that the correct- of the pitiless storm," and who find comness of the longitudes and latitudes may pensatiou for the dangers and sufferings well be relied upon.

they endure, in the excitement which it “In sketching the topographical fea

creates. Looking over the naines of tures of the country, a branch of science

these men, we

see those of many in which he had been professionally educated, Mr. Charles Preuss had been my nations, French, American, German, assistant in both expeditions ; and to his Spanish ; the French coming from extraordinary skill, supported by the the Canadian and Louisiana stocks. pleasure he felt in the execution of his The time of setting out is the month of duties, I am indebted for the continuous May, when the young grass is far topographical sketches of the regions enough advanced to sustain the anithrough which we passed, and which mals ; the point of departure is the were never interrupted by any extremity western limit of civilisation—the fronof fatigue or privation.

tier of Missouri-near the mouth of the - The barometrical and ineteorological Kanzas river. observations were carefully made with

The order of the march and encampgood instruments, and admit of no material error beyond the minute deviations 'ment is described, and is always the inseparable from such operations. same, except when increased danger

“The third expedition, now commen- requires increased vigilance ; for the cing, is undertaken with more ample means whole expedition, from the moment of than the two former; and being directed leaving the frontier, is a progress of to a region so interesting in itself, and so danger, in which vigilance, and courage, new to science, can hardly fail to requite and constant readiness to make defence, the enterprise which explores it.

are the price of the traveller's safety, and “ The report, or narrative, of this ex

his only security for life and property. tended expedition, like the maps which

A day-break rising of the camp-a sunillustrate it, will be strictly confined to what was seen, and to what is necessary

rise breakfast--and an hour by sun to show the face and character of the commencement of the march-was the country, and to add something to science daily order of movement; and then the while fulfilling the instructions of the moving camp assumed the form of a government, which chiefly contemplated military procession. Mounted scouts a military topographical survey. A ahead and on the flanks, to perform the greater degree of popular interest might double duty of videttes and hunters, have been imparted to it by admitting a

front and a rear division of the men to be greater latitude of detail, but it was deemed best to adhere to the rigorous baggage in the centre—such was the

ready for battle either way, with the nothing, either in the narrative or in the order of march. The encampment at maps, which was not the result of posi- night was strictly military, and four tive observation."

things were necessary to constitute a

good one: water, grass, fuel, and a deThe journals both open in the same tensible position. The rule was to halt way, and in the natural way, with the an hour before sunset, to have time names of those composing the expedi- to arrange and secure the camp. Two tion, and their means of prosecuting it, guards were immediately formed; one and accomplishing its objects. About called the horse-guard, from its duty to thirty men, one hundred horses and guard the horses while feeding round mules, some light carts to carry the the camp; the other to guard the camp instruments, some acttle to be killed at night; and in places of more than before reaching the buffaloes, and some ordinary danger, the one-third, or even supply of coffee and flour, with good the one-half of the men would be thus


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employed. The camp would be arrang- vanished before the facts of Capt. Fréed into a square, or circle, the carts mont's Report. The distance, countforming angles, or exterior lines, and ing from the frontier of Missouri to the barricades of trees or bushes often ad- tide water in Oregon, is only about two ded, and sufficiently large to contain thousand miles; the mountains are the horses and cattle, as well as the easily passed; the whole way is practi

At nightfall all, except the camp cable, even in a state of nature, for carguard, were collected within the barri- riages and artillery ; an abundant and cades, the horses being picketed, i. e., nutritious grass furnishes food to horses haltered to a picket eighteen inches and to beef cattle ; and as for the Indians, long, driven into the ground, and with it is on proof that twenty-five men, with a sufficient length of halter to allow the rifles and a howitzer, may move in animal a circle of thirty feet diameter, safety, in spite of the hostility of any within which to feed on the grass dur- tribe. So minute and particular is the ing the night. On this feeding during Report, and that illustrated by maps, the night and pickings during the day, that an army may be marched upon the the horse was to live and keep himself Journal as its guide, finding all the par, in order for service; for from the mo- ticulars of ground, grass, water, and ment of leaving the frontiers of Missou- fuel so minutely stated, that, with the ri until he gets back, or dies, a farewell book in hand, each day's march, and -a long farewell—is bidden by the each night's encampment, may be laid horse to all the accommodations of the down beforehand, and confidently relied stable, and to all the supplies of the rack, upon with all the certainty of absolute or the trough. Fortunately, and this knowledge. With this minuteness of fact will receive an astonishing deve- topographical information, are given lopement and an immense application some enlarged views of the military in the course of the expeditions, this strength of Oregon as a country to be grass, within a few days' march from defended; and from the peculiar structhe frontiers of Missouri, becomes so ture and configuration of the country; nutritious in quality, and so abundant in its iron-bound coast and double range of quantity, that any number of horses and mountains; its single communication cattle may be subsisted upon it for any with the sea, by the mouth of only one distance of march, and any length of river; and the unity and concentration time, summer and winter, quite out to of all its waters in the centre of a great the Pacific ocean. The camp guard valley, surrounded by mountains and by watches without the barricade, while deserts, the conclusion is drawn, and the men and horses sleep and feed with- the opinion expressed, that Oregon is in; but every man sleeps on his rifle, the most impregnable country in the which it is his last care to see is in per- world! The Captain uses the word fect order and well loaded. The night impregnable, which implies defence, and over, the return of the day brings a re- imparts strong emphasis to the advantturn of the daily routine of early rising age of a first possession. The British and early moving, which is never inter- government seem to have been aware mitted, except, when for some cause of this important fact, and to have there is a day or an interval of repose. availed themselves of their lludson Bay

The military view of this subject was, Company to do for them in Oregon of course, the first object of the explo- what the East India Company have rer's attention, and in this the result of done for them in Asia. the examination has been entirely satis- Connected with the military view of factory. It had been supposed, and the country, or rather as the basis of all even affirmed by leading authorities military operations from the Mississippi in Europe and America,* that distance, to the Pacific, Capt. Frémont promimountains, hostility of Indians, and the nently and perseveringly presents the impossibility of subsisting men and seemingly insignificant article of grass. horses in so long a march, would pre- At one hundred and fifty miles, or a sent insuperable obstacles to a military week's march, from the frontiers of expedition from the United States to Missouri, the short, rich, nutritious and Oregon. All these impossibilities have abundant buffalo grass sets in, equal to

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* Mr. Calhoun's speeches in the Senate, and Edinburgh Review.

our domestic provender for horses and pressed itself upon his imagination ; and cattle, and equally good in its green or from this similarity of structure is aldry state ; being thus available sum- ready arising a similarity of life in mer and winter. This grass prevails to commerce and travelling, moving in ca. the Rocky Mountains, and is even found ravans, camping out, and depending in those mountains at an elevation of upon grass to sustain the horses which ten thousand feet. Beyond those moun- carried the men, and the cattle which tains another species of grass sets in, they drive along for food. Captain longer, and of a different character, but (then Lieutenant) Frémont himself was not less valuable than the buffalo, and seldom without caitle, taking thirty head endowed with the remarkable property at a time from the valley of the Sacraof a second growth, coming on in the mento, sometimes using them as fresh fall after the death or destruction of its beef, sometimes jerkedi. e., cut thin, first growth. This is called bunch grass, and suddenly dried by the sun and fire. from its form, growing in clusters; In the subserviency of the buffalo and and, like the buffalo, it loves the moun. bunch grasses of the Farthest West to tains and elevated plains. It seems to the purposes of war, there is a profound be universal on the western slope of our military conception, of which future continent, as the buffalo grass is on the generals may make the application. eastern slope of the Rocky Mountains; The military reconnoisance, or reconand was found sufficient for the susten- noitring, was, as has been remarked, the ance of their horses, even in the dead first object of the expedition, and the of winter-even in the months of De- object which brought it within the legicember, January, and February—in the timate scope of an appropriation for the deep gorges and on the lofty peaks of Topographical Engineers; and the Rethe Sierra Nerada (snowy mountain of port made upon the line of march from California), when the wind had blown the frontiers of Missouri to Oregon, the snow from some exposed point, or showing the nature and practicability of the sun had melted it in a cove, or their the country between, and the proper own large fires, built of colossal pines places for temporary camps and permaand cedars, had melted a circle in the nent stations, with the means of condeep snow about the camp. It was also quering or avoiding obstacles, would found in the Great Desert of the Lower have been sufficient to have satisfied all California wherever there was water to the obligations which military duty imsustain it, and forms the only support of posed, and to have commanded the apthe annual caravan of many thousands probation of the government. But this of wild horses which are driven from limited performance of duty did not salthe coast of the Pacific, in the latitude isfy the laudable ambition of the young of Monterey and Puebla de los Angeles, explorer. Science came in for her to Santa Fe, and the northern parts of share of his attentions; and a large Mexico. This universality and excel- share she received. Geography, geololence of these far-western grasses, may gy, botany, meteorology, each seems as give a new character to warlike opera- if each had been his sole pursuit; so tions in that quarter, dispensing with incessantly and so minutely is everythe immense commissariat of European thing relating to each noted and dearmies which always impede and en- scribed; while the popular view of the cumber, and frequently frustrate the country, for the benefit of the statesman movement of armies, and assimilating it and for the information of the current to Asiatic and Tartar expeditions, which reader, was also everywhere kept up. are always sudden and rapid, the grass Seldom has it happened that any jourfeeding at once the horse which carries nal has been crowded with such masses the man, and the ox that feeds him. of material, and on such numerous and Transportation and subsistence, the two various subjects, or fraught with such great clogs and expenses of modern ar. respectable contributions to the general mies, are thus reduced to the simple intelligence of the age. element of grass, costing nothing, and In geography, the additions to our being found where you want it; and in knowledge are great; much of it entire this point of view it is considered by ly new. The country from the frontiers Capt. Frémont, and constantly spoken of Missouri to the Rocky Mountains, on of by him. An Asiatic, rather than an the line of the Kansas and Great Platte, American structure of the country, im- is shown to be arable and inhabitable, instead of being desert and barren, as the greatest and most striking of all the often heretofore represented. The geographical discoveries and descripRocky Mountains, which Capt. Fré- tions is that of the Great Basin, or vast mont crossed at four different places, interior plain which lies between the instead of being desolate and impassa- Sierra Nevada and the Rocky Mounble, are shown to have many excellent tains east and west, and between the passes (of which the South Pass is the Blue mountains on the Wahsatch on the finest), and to emboson beautiful val- south, and embracing an area of five or leys, caves, and parks, with lakes and six hundred miles diameter. The elemineral springs, rivalling and surpass- vation of the Sierra Nevada, being more ing the most enchanting parts of the lofty than the Rocky Mountains, acAlpine regions in Switzerland. The counts for the formation of this Great Great Salt Lake, one of the wonders of Basin, as Capt. Frémont calls it, and of nature, and perhaps without a rival in which he is the first to announce its the world (being a saturated solution of existence to the world. A basin, which salt, of an hundred miles diameter), is may hold such a kingdom as France, for the first time revealed to our view, and which has for its rim a circle of by one who has surveyed its shores and mountains whose summits penetrate the navigated its waters. The Bear river region of eternal snow, is certainly a valley, with its rich bottoms, fine grass, new and grand object to be revealed to walled-up mountains, hot springs, mine- our contemplation; and its non-discovery ral springs, soda fountains, volcanic heretofore can only be attributed to its rock, volcanic crater, and saline efflo- position in that part of Spanish Ameri. rescences, and four thousand five hun- ca (the Californias) from which Spanish dred feet above the sea, is for the first jealousy excluded every foreign eye. Its time described. The same of the existence is now established. Captain Sierra Nevada—of the rivers Sacra- Frémont was in it and round it-eight mento and San Joaquin, which consti- months getting round it--and never out tute the waters of the bay of San of sight of snow-capped mountains, its Francisco—and the same of the Great own elevation being upwards of four Desert, and its Arab inhabitants, which thousand feet above the sea. His delies south of the latitude of that bay, and scription of it will be read with profound extends many degrees east towards the interest, and FREMONT's Basin is asRocky Mountains. None of these ob- suredly the name which justice and jects have heretofore been described by propriety would bestow upon it. any traveller. On the other hand, the Botanical researches were evidently famed Buenaventura river, which has a favorite pursuit with Capt. Frémont. had a place on so many maps, and a Not a day passes that he does not note line of such great length traced for it the botany of the route, and mark the from the Rocky Mountains to the sea, casual as well as the characteristic is proved to have no existence that no plants and flowers. From the zeal with such river does, or can, come down to which he sought them—the cordiality the sea from those mountains, the lofty with which he saluted the new and Sierra Nerada interposing an insup- beautiful, and the vast collections which erable obstacle—that the Columbia is he made, and which were still considerathe only river which traverses the ble after the loss of a mule-load in the western slope of our continent from the Sierra Nevada, and the damage of mountains to the sea-a fact which others in the great flood of the Kanzas gives to the Columbia, as Captain Fré- when almost home, it is evident that he mont well remarks, a great additional found in this delightful study of the value in the eyes of nations. The form works of Nature, in one of her most and character of the valley which holds elegant and attractive departments, a the waters of the bay of San Francisco, luxurious enjoyment of the mind, which is now, for the first time, made known, compensated and relieved the toils of the with the important fact that it connects body. With characteristic modesty he with the Oregon Territory by its main satisfies himself in gathering and river, the Sacramento, which heads north bringing in these rare and beautiful of latitude 42, in the table land which productions, and leaves it to the profesholds the romantic lake, or meadow, sional science of Dr. Torrey, of Princecalled Tlamalh, from which Fall River ton, to classify his specimens, and give proceeds direct to the Columbia. But them to the world. This the doctor has

done in an appendix to the Report, ties terminated. The survey was comwhich will be read with great interest plete from the Mississippi to the Pacific. by the friends and lovers of botany. The expedition of 1842 had carried it to

Geology came in for a full share of the South Pass in the Rocky Mountains: attention, and the surface of the earth that of 1843 carried it to the Lower was not only constantly inspected for Columbia, and there met the survey of what it presented externally, but all Captain Wilkes. A great work was opportunities were seized in bluffs, cliffs, then accomplished. Our Continent was chasms, ravines, river banks, and in the surveyed through its interior. All the sides and gorges of mountains to dis- materials were obtained for a map, and cover what the disruption of the earth, itinerary of the road to Oregon, with all the abrasion of the waters, or the tum- the information which war, science, or bling of avalanches might have re- commerce could require; and, in addivealed from the interior. Characteris- tion, all the barometrical observations tic soils and rocks are specified; fossils made for the construction of a profile and minerals enumerated; and speci- map which could give a view of the mens brought in of what was new or elevations of the country upon the whole rare. Of these specimens, one of fos- line of travel. The work of duty was siliferous rock, having an oólitic struc- accomplished, and the expedition might ture, and found in the rim of the Great have returned upon its track with the Basin on the side that encloses the approbation which was due to success. Great Salt Lake, will attract the atten- But such was not the temper of its tion of learned men both in Europe and young and adventurous leader. He had America; as will the fluviatile infusoria no desire to make tracks where he bad found in the lofty escarpements of the made them before, or even where any. Cascade Range on the lower Columbia. body else had made them. His ambition These specimens, and numerous others, aspired to something new-something were referred to Dr. Hall, of New York, beyond orders—beyond duty: something and Professor Bailey, of West Point, that should add to the stock of useful whose skilful classification and erudite knowledge, and to his own fame. And, remarks illustrate all the geological col- late as the season was (20th of Novemlections of Capt. Frémont, and will be ber), he determined to explore a new found in appendixes to the Report. route, and to return to the United States

Morning, noon, and night, the thermo- by an untrod path, through regions unmeter was in hand to ascertain the de- visited, and which vague report filled gree of heat or cold. As the country with deserts, mountains, rivers, lakes, rose or fell-mountain, plain or valley, and strange tribes of Indians who had lake or river—the barometer was ap- had no intercourse with the whites. It plied to tell the elevation above the sea. is at page 196 of the Report that Capt. Every clear night the telescope was Frémont states this determination, and pointed to the heavens, and occultation his reasons for it, which we give in his of planets, and immersion and emersion own words: of satellites, watched, and all the astronomical observations made which give “ The camp was now occupied in ma. the latitude and longitude. Every day king the necessary preparations for our the weather is noted; and the almanac. homeward journey, which, though homemaker may construct an almanac for ward, contemplated a new route, and a the Rocky Mountains, Oregon and Cali- great circuit to the south and southeast

, fornia, from a perusal of this Report. between the Rocky mountains and the

and the exploration of the Great Basin Wind, rain, snow, sleet, ice, clouds, Sicrra Nevada. "Three principal obsunshine, heat, cold, temperate-all are jects were indicated by report or by noted on these crowded pages. In fact, maps, as being on this route, the charthey make a clear exhibition of the acter or existence of which I wished to climates of the different regions, and ascertain, and which I assumed as landmust have both use and interest to those marks or leading points, on the prowho study the character of these re- jected line of return. The first of these mote countries, or contemplate a re

points was the Tlamath lake, on the moval to them.

table land between the head of Fall Thus marching, and working, the and the Sacramento, which goes to the

river, which comes to the Columbia, expedition arrives at the tide water of bay of San Francisco; and from which the Columbia, and at that point its du- lake a river of the same name makes its

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