April 28, 1834

28 April: Nice morning; warm early. Mr. Laidlaw had the buffalo robes that had [just] been brought in, and [also those] traded during the winter, checked and classified.

We packed our luggage. At eight o’ clock, 63°F [17.2°C]. Moderate wind out of the north. Our people received several days’ [supply of] corn, which they simmered in lye to remove [the hulls]. They call this lessirer le maÿs. For six dollars I bought a swan from the interpreter Ortubise that he had preserved very well.

[Page 3:168]I determined the dimensions of the fort in paces as follows [see drawing]:

Figure 21.1. Plan of Fort Pierre: “‘a’ living quarters of the interpreters and the engagés; ‘b’ cattle barn; ‘c’ stores and warehouses; ‘d’ Mr. Laidlaw’s house with dining room and guest rooms; ‘e’ living quarters and office of the first clerk , Mr. Halsey; ‘f’ blockhouses; ‘g’ both gates of the fort.

The fort has 150 horses and 36 head of cattle—[they have] good milk and fresh butter every day.

Today it became very windy. The wind was favorable for our journey, but we could not travel yet. At one o’clock, 65 1/2°F [ 18.6°C]. At noon there was less wind and the weather [was] pleasant. Wáh-Menítu and several Dacotas visited us in the afternoon and looked at our drawings. The skin lodge [tipi] we received here was set up on the boat. Mr. Laidlaw let me have zwieback, onions, some potatoes, rice, apples, turnips, dried meat, preserved red beets and pickles, fresh butter, and a loaf of fresh bread, for which I was charged very little. We packed a large box with Dacota curiosities and natural history specimens, [stored] here since our first stay, in which a few mice had built nests and caused some damage. Mr. Laidlaw was very courteous. Mr. Bodmer did a few sketches—a view of the fort from the hills and the view of an interesting scaffold of the dead with a curved, woven basket; [under this, wrapped] in a red blanket, were the bones of a Dacota warrior, carried from afar [and] laid here to rest.

Monday, April 28, 1834
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Dustin Griffin