September 1, 1833
1 September: Beautiful, clear weather; at eight o’ clock, already hot. At 7:30, 70°F [21.1°C]. Trade began again. We received meat, furs, and the like. Early in the morning I saw the wife of the Blood Indian chief here in the fort; she deplored the disagreements. Negotiations had been opened with the Piegans to pay off the blood debt with gifts; perhaps they will be reconciled. The Blackfoot chief la Corne de Vache Basse came into the fort and said that he and his people would hold themselves apart somewhat from the Piegans. Many Indians [and] also chiefs came into the fort, and we exchanged various objects with them.[Page 2:252] I instructed a man to paint the recent battle at the fort on an elk hide. Several Sarcee Indians came in and announced that they would soon come here with their entire band and the Blackfoot to sell their beaver.
At twelve o’ clock, 73°F [22.8°C]. The sky at noon, somewhat overcast; the weather, moderate and pleasant. One saw individual [tipis] leaving, as soon as the [occupants] had finished their trading. Several, perhaps ten or twelve, of the most distinguished Indians sat smoking in the fort all morning. Women and children besieged the Indian store. After lunch a violent storm without rain suddenly arose, which drove sand and dust into the air. Suddenly, all the Indians and whites in the fort were running about in confusion; the Indians forced their way out. I believed it was to protect their [tipis] from the wind, but someone had called out that the Assiniboines were approaching, and they were already reaching for their weapons; but at this moment an Indian came and cleared the matter up. It was the Blackfoot (Siksikas) who had made their appearance on the hills.
This morning the Indians had brought only a few beaver and even fewer buffalo robes: [instead,] mostly meat and several horses. Meat had been purchased in large amounts. The Indian from whom I bought the feather bonnet invited Mr. Bodmer into his [tipi], where he was treated to three different kinds of meat. In the afternoon [this Indian] came and visited us. He was a nice, pleasant person and looked very elegant in his attire. He had received all the beautiful articles of clothing as gifts at [the] conclusion of peace with the Crows and wanted to go there again in the fall. The old principal chief, Middle Bull, came in poor, plain apparel to Mr. Mitchell, [and] I asked him to let himself be drawn after he had been shown the various pictures. At the same time, to arouse his desire, I had someone tell him that it was striking that all those whom we had drawn had not been killed or wounded. He was pleased to hear this and promised to come as soon as he had traded his articles of exchange.
Toward evening the camp of the Piegans had already greatly diminished. As soon as they had finished their trading, many left with sack and pack and camped farther upstream along the Missouri or the Teton River, where there was forage for their horses. One [continued to see] individual Piegans firing their guns at the charred remains of the slain Assiniboine when they came to [him], and women and children struck the [remains] with wood and stones. Their bitterness toward enemies has no bounds. At seven o’ clock it was night. It became very cool this evening.