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EARLIEST EXPEDITION AGAINST PUGET SOUND 

INDIANS. 



These "Notes connected with the Clallum Expedition" by 
Frank Ermatinger, a well known clerk of the Hudson Bay 
Company, were copied from the original document for me by 
Mr. R. E. Gosnell, private secretary of the Premier of British 
Columbia, and more recently editor of the Victoria Colonist. 
For more than three quarters of a century this earliest record 
of Puget Sound lay unnoticed and unread, until at my repeated 
and urgent request Mr. Gosnell obtained a loan of this and 
other matter connected with old Hudson Bay days, and kindly 
sent me this transcript, the only copy, I believe, in the United 
States. You will note I have made it the basis of Chapter IV 
of my last book, "McDonald of Oregon." I wish here to re- 
cord my very great indebtedness to Mr. Gosnell for this and 
many other favors connected with my historical researches. 

EVA EMERY DYE. 

Notes connected with the Clallum Expedition fitted out un- 
der the command of Alex. R. McLeod, Esquire, Chief Trader 
at Fort Vancouver on the 17th of June, 1828, by 

FRANK ERMATINGER, Clerk. 

Friday, 13th, 1828.— Since the unfortunate murder of Mr. Alex. 
McKenzie and the four men under his charge, by the tribe called 
the Clallums, in Puget Sound, on their way back with an ex- 
press from Port Langley, in January last, it appears to have 
been a decided impression of all that an expedition to their quar- 
ter would be most necessary, if not as a punishment to the 
tribe in question, at least as an example, in order, if possible, 
to deter others from similar attempts in future. But since the 
arrival of the islanders at Vancouver 7th inst., every little ar- 
rangement has been kept so close from us, although the vessel 
Gadboro, Capt. Simpson, got under weigh yesterday, I believe for 
the purpose of a co-operation, we one and all began to doubt 
whether we were to be sent off or not, and should absolutely have 
despaired, had it not been, armorers were kept busily employed 
stocking rifles, repairing pistols, etc., etc., which we saw bore 
no connection with the trade. However, this morning affairs 
appeared more determined and a muster was made of all the 
effective men upon the ground, both free and hired and they 
were told by Chief Factor McLoughlin, of the necessity of going 

(19) 



Earliest Expedition Against Puget Sound Indians ij 

off in search of the murderous tribe, and if possible, to make 
a salutary example of them, that the honour of the whites was 
at a stake, and that if we did not succeed in the undertaking it 
would be dangerous to be seen by the natives any distance 
from the Fort hereafter. All the men assented, or rather none 
appeared unwilling, but Challifoux, who happened to make a 
remark mal a propos, and was immediately turned out of the 
hall and his services refused. This answered well, as it led the 
men to think that volunteers only were wanted and all were 
ashamed to keep back. Those who from ill health or other 
causes were omitted in the muster expressed themselves much 
disappointed. No gentleman was this day named, but it was 
evident that Messrs. McLeod and Dease were aware of their 
appointment having so frequently tried the effects, of their rifles 
together. 

Sunday, 15th. — This evening we were talking amongst our- 
selves of the appointments for the expedition, and guessing who 
was likely to be upon it; Mr. Dease was of the party, and told 
Mr. Yale and I we might, he thought, prepare to follow it. 

Monday, 16th. — The most of the day Messrs. McLeod and 
Dease equipping the men with their arms and a little ammuni- 
tion, each, to try them with. The party will, independent of 
the vessel which extra manned for the occasion, consist of up- 
wards of sixty men, headed by Mr. A. R. McLeod and Mr. Dease 
goes, and Mr. Yale and I upon the hint we got yesterday are 
prepared to follow as no further notice had been given us, ex- 
cept indeed my being told to take my watch with me. In fact, 
Mr. McLoughlin appears delicate in requesting anyone to go, 
least an unwillingness should be shown. 

In the evening the men received a regale and the Iroquois 
went through a war dance, in character, before the Hall Door. 

Tuesday, 17th.— At 4 o'clock all Mr. McLeod's arrangements 
were completed and the Vancouver Local Militia put in motion. 
In passing the Fort the men discharged their pieces and a salute 
of Cannon was returned upon our embarking, but the Captain 
of the "Eagle", either taken up on short notice, or what is 
more probable being short of Powder, instead of a round of Guns 
gave us three of Cheers. At 5 o'clock P. M. we made a start 
in five Boats, and went off in tolerable style, but a small distance 
down the River we was obliged to put on shore to Gum, where 
we encamped for the night. 

Chalifoux, since his disgrace, has solicited every one of us, 
in our turns, to intercede with Mr. McLoughlin for him and was 
this day by the influence, I believe, of Mr. Connolly, added to 
our number. 

Wednesday, 18th/ — We were upon the water this morning 
at half past three, were more than two hours ashore for break- 
fast, reached the mouth of the Cowlitz River at noon and en- 
camped for the night at 5 o'clock when we all turned out to a 
target and were at complete counters, it was rifles against guns 

B 



18 Frank Ermattnger 

and guns against Rifles, which afforded us argument for the 
night, and ended with every one being best pleased with his own 
shots. If we continue on at this rate, thought I, we may, or at 
least, like the Bow Bell Train bands may so far improve as to 
be enabled to discharge our pieces without blinking. 

Thursday, 19th. — We commenced our march at half past four, 
and continued on at a brisk rate until the usual hour for break- 
fast, when we put ashore and remained two hours. We then re- 
sumed and reached the Cowlitz Portage at half past two. We 
here saw a solitary native, from whom, I believe, for I cannot 
speak positively, (as we are seldom advised with, altho' I was 
requested by Mr. McLeod to keep notes of the Voyage I am 
never told what is going on, but collect what little information 
I possess how and when I can), that a few horses can be hired a 
small distance from this, that the Clallums have divided, those 
who wish to stand neutral having separated from those who 
wish to resist, and that we may possibly find and punish them 
with much less trouble or danger than was at one time antici- 
pated. 

Our commander says little to us upon ordinary occasions. 
However, when we spoke relative to the news of the day, he 
begged us not to put implicit belief in all we heard and ventured 
to add : "God bless you gentlemen," the ties of consanguinity 
are so strongly cemented amongst the natives that our attack 
must be clandestinely made. We looked at each other. 

Weather fine throughout the day. Deputy killed a small Deer 
of last spring, and several large ones were seen. In the even- 
ing we amused ourselves and the camp in sending off a few 
Rockets. 

Friday, 20th. — At eight o'clock. this morning the interpreter 
Laframboise was sent off to Indian Lodges to hire what horses 
we could collect, and Mr. Dease, without orders accompanied 
him. At ten they returned with a few Natives, who had four, 
and after some trouble and bargaining they were hired for the 
Trip, and in course of the day some more were added to the 
number, which with two here belonging to the company made 
fourteen that we have to commence the march with. Two and 
a half skins, I am told, is the stipulated price for the voyage to 
and fro, and some altercation proceeded from a wish to obtain 
five skins for each horse, which the natives say was the price 
they had from Mr. McMillan for the trip merely across, and 
again they wished to obtain Blankets or ammunition in pay- 
ment. However, Mr. McLeod would not give either, and threat- 
ens if they were not contented with Stronds, etc., he would 
send back his provisions to the Fort and feed his men upon horse- 
flesh whenever he found any. 

In the evening the men were sent to make a few Pack Saddles. 
Some Hght showers through the day. Several of the men were 
off hunting, but only saw a red deer or two, at least "they killed 
none. Those who remained at the -Camp kept up almost a con- 
tinuous firing. 



Earliest Expedition Against Puget Sound Indians ig 

Old Towlitz, alias Lord St. Vincent, was amongst our visi- 
tors today and is to be added to the party, as assistant Inter- 
preter. 

Saturday, 21st. — We this morning commenced operations by 
hauling up our Boats and putting them en cache. The first of 
the party then got under way at half past seven and stopped for 
breakfast at nine. The rest started as they got ready and con- 
tinued to arrive at our resting place until half past eleven. We 
then began to make a few more saddles, as it appeared that only 
four new ones were got ready last night. We resumed our 
march in the same order again at half past one, and encamped 
for the night at six o'clock. Our march this day looked more 
like- that of gipsies than a force collected for the purpose we are. A 
light shower or two about noon, but the weather upon the 
whole fine and fresh. We hired a few more horses today, of 
which there appears to be no want on our road, but the fault 
of their not having been found before appears to be rather in 
our own operations than otherwise, as the Indians are very 
anxious to lend them and that, too, at what I think a very mod- 
erate remuneration. Had a man been sent off from the Fort 
a day before, everything could have been ready at the Portage 
by our arrival, or even had Laframboise, or one of us been im- 
mediately sent off upon Our landing; and the driving a hard 
bargain with the poor wretches not made an object, a Day at. 
least would have been here gained. Too great a sacrifice has 
already been made to forward the expedition, to now stand upon 
such trifles. 

Sunday, 22nd.-Our horses were loaded and we off at half 
past four, and at eight we stopped for breakfast, but like our 
order of yesterday it was nine before the last of our men ar- 
rived. Mr. Yale and I here hired a horse each, to pay for which 
we had some trouble before we could borrow thirty, etc. Dease 
had been more successful and was mounted yesterday. We 
resumed our route at twelve and encamped at five o'clock. 

This night a watch was commenced to consist of four men 
and a gentleman for four hours each watch, and in crying "All's 
Well," which they were ordered to do, at intervals, a loud 
laugh was heard in the Camp for which the men received a 
good scolding. The cause was this, they had solicited and ob- 
tained permission to trade a fat young horse for their supper 
which they were just cooking when the sentinel cried his All s 
Well" and the cook elated with his extra good cheer before 
him answered "in the kettle." This set the camp a laughmg 
and called down a severe reprimand from Mr. McLeod, who 
after repeating the word laugh almost twenty times threatened 
them as many, that the next time they did so they should 
lose their wages. One more incorrigible than the rest 
sneaked behind and said in a half whisper, that the 
devil might take him if, when he. lost his wages, he would be 
at the trouble to go in search of them. We now laugh in our 
turn but with less noise. A letter was received from Mr. Mc- 



20 Frank Ermatinger 

Millan addressed to Mr. McLoughlin dated the ioth of May. 
It had been forwarded by an Indian Chief (Schunawa), who was 
killed upon his road thence. But the letter had been taken the 
greatest care of, and was forwarded from Tribe to Tribe until 
this morning when it fell into the hands of Mr. Dease. Mr. 
McLeod opened it and merely told us the date. Mr. Dease 
asked him if there was any news, No, was the laconic answer. 
However, in the most pointed manner, he immediately turned 
to Laframboise and Deputy, who were by him, and detailed 
the contents. This is not the only instance, in which great con- 
tempt has been shown us, or our opinions slighted. It might be 
thought, that the danger or cause of our jaunt would be suffi- 
ciently galling to our feelings without adding any more weight 
by a forbidding and repulsive conduct, on the part of our leader, 
at least, we may think without vanity that our conversation 
and confidence are equal to those whom he thinks so worthy 
of both. 

Monday, 23rd. — We were under way at half past five, were 
the usual time at breakfast, arrived at the end of the Portage 
at half past one. We here found a canoe of the Company's left 
by Mr. Hanson and hired two more from the natives. The 
men of their own accord immediately commenced making their 
paddles. The watch of the men altered from four to two hours 
but ours stands at four. 

La Penzer, who has, since we left the Fort, been in a most de- 
pressed state, to-night when told it was his watch confessed him- 
self too much afraid to stand it. Arguments or threats were of no 
avail. "Je ne suis pas capable, Monsieur," was always the an- 
swer, and he was ultimately given up as incurable. I had taken 
the greater interest to persuade him to do something to divert 
his mind, being a Thompsons River man and the more ashamed 
of him upon that account, but could not succeed. Sleep alone 
he sought and to it I left him. 

Tuesday, 24th. — At seven o'clock this morning Laframboise 
and a party of men were sent off in two small Canoes, to trade 
or borrow some of the larger kind, and Le Etang, our guide, 
with another party went overland, on horseback, to meet them 
at an appointed place, where, after giving the horses in charge 
to an Indian, who is to keep them until our return, they are to 
assist in working the Canoes here. At a small distance from 
the Camp Le Etang killed a Deer which he brought to us and 
immediaely took his departure again. It was thought unneces- 
sary that any gentleman should accompany either party, confi- 
dence being put in Laframboise for the purpose. 

This afternoon two Indians arrived from Cheenook with a 
letter from the "Cadboro," Capt. Simpson, dated as late as the 
20th, so that we have now a consolation for our lost time, for, 
had we got on as we ought our chance of seeing her in the 
Sound would have been small. All I' fear is that this confounded 
note will be made an excuse for more tardy movements. One 
of the free Iroquoi6 killed us another deer. I pass over fur- 



Earliest Expedition Against Puget Sound Indians 21 

ther notice of our practice of firing and it may be considered 
a regular turnout every day, however, it may not be amiss to 
note that the most of the shooting is rather from pride than the 
want of practice, for it is the good marksmen only who do it, 
and when their own ammunitions runs short they assist the diffi- 
dents to get through theirs, 800 shots at least, an avertge of ten 
per man, were fired today to the danger of those who found 
it necessary to go a few yards from the camp. Mr. Dease has 
the stores in charge, and intimated that the stock would not 
stand out, if we continue on at such a rate. 

Wednesday, 25th. — At fiye o'clock p. m. Laframboise and Le 
Etang returned in eight canoes, including the two they took 
off, but four men short, whom they left as it appeared to me 
in rather a curious manner with the natives, looking after an- 
other canoe. They had very little trouble in obtaining six, and 
could possibly, so the guide says, have got a few more. Would 
not a great deal of time have been saved by our all going 
where the canoes are instead of remaining inactive here? The 
distance is short. The news is that the Clallums expect us and 
have collected at their farthest village, that they have formed 
many plans to ward off our balls, "wetting their blankets is the 
most appro v£d amongst them, and the natives of this quarter 
wish to accompany us in order to revenge the death of four of 
their Tribe, whom they have killed. 

Several of our men were out at the chase, and all saw a Deer 
but few brought us venison. Gervaise the freeman killed four 
and Chalifoux one. 

Thursday, 26th. — This morning the four men left behind yes- 
terday, after some misery, returned to the Camp with a good 
large Canoe, and Laframboise with eight men, was sent off 
again: At five o'clock he returned with four more canoes. 
Heavy rains throughout the day. 

For want of other amusement, during the rain, Mr. Work's 
Chart of Puget Sound was produced and something like a plan, 
for the first time laid open, which was merely this: When we 
see the murderers, said Mr. McLeod, we must endeavor to come 
to a parley, and obtain the woman, who, by the by, I had 
scarcely ever heard mentioned before today, that was taken 
bv them when our people were killed, and after we have her 
iti our possession — What then? said I. Why then to -them 
pell mell. Messrs. Yale, Dease and I at once admitted it to be 
a -most laudable wish to set the poor woman at liberty, which 
we thought could always be done at the price of a few Blankets 
and without so many men coming so far, but to make it the 
primitive object of our expedition, we never understood, nor 
could we, we added, ever agree to it. The business was then 
wound up with a short account of the influence her father had 
amongst his tribe to do mischief to the whites, upon whose ac- 
count her liberty was at any consideration to be obtained by us. 

Friday, 27th. — We made over our horses and saddles, cords, 
&c, &c", to an old Indian's care, at least, as many of the former 



22 Frank Ermatinger 

as may be found for they have not, with the exception of eigh- 
teen that LeEtang took, been seen since we arrived here, and 
the men having hired a few for themselves the number is greater 
than might be expected. 

The canoes were in the course of the morning allotted, they 
are of a small kind for our purpose, but will, I trust, make a 
shift. We have made it a point to praise them, being well 
aware that it would not require much to induce Mr. McLeod to 
turn back, if a tolerable excuse could be made. Laframboise 
who ostensibly, is the commander, certainly merits praise in get- 
ting us thus far, and while he humors Mr. McLeod, by giving 
everything the most favorable construction it will bear, he en- 
deavors to get the business on doucement, and was I inclined 
to find fault with either he or the guide it would be for not 
proposing our going immediately to where the Canoes were hired, 
but perhaps they did so, and the measure was discountenanced 
by Deputy and Gervaise, two leading members of the Council. 

At two o'clock P. M. we got under way in eleven Canoes of 
different sizes, and proceeded on for three hours and a half, 
when we encamped. No Indians accompany us, except Lord St. 
Vincent. It was with great difficulty that La Ecuyer was in- 
duced to embark. He said he would have no objections to re- 
main and take care of the Horses, if a couple of men were left 
to take care of him. 

Deputy and Gervaise were added to the officers' watch and our 
time altered from four to two hours, and a resolve proclaimed 
that any gent, found sleeping during the day time should be 
Cobbed! ! ! ! Yes, that's the word. 

Saturday, 28th. — We got under way at five o'clock, but before 
breakfast we were merely running about for canoes, that we 
hired, and left two of our small ones. At 10 we embark again, 
Mr. Yale and I together, and with us a native to act as a Clal- 
lum interpreter. We continued on in fine, calm weather until 
six o'clock when we encamped. Just below where we stopped 
for the night, we saw a few of the Puy-ye-lips Tribe, but they 
were so much frightened, by the continued firing of our men 
firing at the Eagles that they paddled off, and it was with great 
exertion that our canoe could approach them and come to a 
parley. Our guide told Mr. Yale and I, as a great secret, that 
the information obtained, was, that the Clallums had withstood 
some liberal offers for the woman in order to restore her and 
that they wish to compromise the murder of our men. 

Sunday, 29th. — We were upon the water at five this morning, 
stopped three hours to breakfast, and encamped opposite, or 
rather between, two small villages of the Soquarmis. Several 
small canoes of these fellows came to our encampment, but 
did not debark, and one of them having a Powder Horn upon 
him, belonging to one of our deceased men, little ceremony 
was used by Laframboise in dispossessing him of it. We 
received little or no information, but thev offer themselves to 
us as auxiliaries, and were told, I believe, that we fought our 



Earliest Expedition Against Puget Sound Indians 23 

own battles. However, the chief received a present and was 
told that he might embark with us, alone. They had heard the 
Vessel's Guns. Just before we encamped the Interpreter went 
off to one of the villages, and some of the men followed in 
order, I suppose, to trade themselves a few shellfish. Mr. 
Dease wished from curiosity to go too, and asked Mr. McLeod, 
May I go, Sir? Go if you choose, was the answer, rather 
sharply. I beg your pardon, Sir, said Dease, but really I did not 
hear you. Do as you like, was repeated. No, Sir, it is not as 
I like, if you want me here I will remain. I do not want you 
there, nor I do not want you here, was the reply of Mr. McLeod, 
in a most sulky manner. Dease, near choked with irritation and 
muttered as - he turned to Mr. Yale and me. Damme, it is too 
bad, we begged of him to say nothing more upon the subject 
at present. 

Monday, 30th. — We left our encampment at four -o'clock this 
morning, crossed to the Village, when we exchange two of our 
small Canoes for a larger one, the chief then embarked and 
four canoes of his tribe followed us, at a small distance. We 
took breakfast at the usual time, but were much shorter about it. 
At one o'clock we saw two small' Canoes of the same Tribe, 
and the one Mr. Yale and I were in. gave them Chase. They de- 
barked upon a point and hid themselves amongst the Woods, but 
upon the old Indian who was with us calling to them, they made 
their appearance. We learnt from them, that a few Clallums, 
are at a small distance, upon a portage over which we have to 
cross, we at once, upon the advice of our Indian Interpreters, 
&c, put ashore and were to remain all very quiet in order, if. 
possible, to take them by surprise during the night. The Iro- 
quois, Owhyees, and Cheenook slaves painted themselves ready 
for battle. But all the ceremony must be rendered a burlesque 
by our men, at least, one or two of them discharging their 
pieces and behold, we to mend the matter, send off rockets! ! ! 
Really one would think it was purposely done to warn the 
natives. 

We heard the Vessel's guns just about Dark. 

July, Tuesday, 1st. — At one o'clock this morning we em- 
barked, and took with us one of the natives we saw yesterday 
noon, for what purpose we did not know. He was in our canoe 
with the Galium interpreter. Our crew consisted of one young 
Canadian (Canada dit Encan) one half breed (Canotte), two 
Iroquois (Little Michel and Louis Frize), two Owhyees (Tour- 
awhyheene and Cawinai) and two Cheenook slaves (Antoine 
and Nastee), Mr. Yale. and I passengers. With Mr. McLeod 
was Laframboise and with Dease, Old Towlitz, so that from the 
Interpreters being thus separated, it was necessary when the 
most trifling question was to be asked by Laframboise, that we 
should get near to each other, and even then speak louder than 
could be wished. We continued on slowly with the greatest 
caution of more than two hours ; occasionally, however, stopping 
for consultations amongst the Interpreters, (which were kept 



24 Frank Ermatinger 

entirely secret from us, nor repeated to Mr. McLeod, in French 
while we were near, lest I presume, we should understand) as 
we thought, to a portage, but all at once we found our canoe 
alone, and the Indians changed their places to immediately be- 
hind Mr. Yale and I, and appeared to solicit us to advance by 
signs, occasionally holding up seven of their fingers and utter- 
ing the word Clallums. I thought they wished to debark and 
told Michel the foreman so, who no sooner put the canoe ashore 
than out they got, and with them Yale and five of the crew, and 
were instantly making along the shore. When I saw this, I 
also left the canoe and ordered the Canadian to remain with 
it, while with the other two I ran after the rest. We over- 
took them just as they were in sight of two Indian Lodges, 
(there might be more at a distance) situated close to the woods, 
to one of which the Indians without pointed and said Clallums. 
It was the furthest off and far the smallest of the two. Mr. 
Yale and I got upon a large fallen tree, close alongside of it, 
behind which I proposed we should get and fire, if we found 
ourselves outnumbered or worsted. The Indians were evidently 
asleep when we arrived, the day was just breaking, but upon 
hearing the noise we made, awoke, and a man put his head out 
of the Lodge, and upon seeing us (however he could not, I think, 
distinctly distinguish who we were) hove a most piteous sigh. 
Tirer Dessus was called out and four or five shots were imme- 
diately off. I saw two men, I thought, fall, but whether dead 
I could not say. The rest took the edge of the woods, but some 
of our men were there before them and the firing became gen- 
eral. Eight or ten shots were discharged in rapid succession, 
I remained stationary and saw that Mr. Dease, Laframboise, 
Le Etang, and a few of the men had joined the party from the 
Canoes behind. The confusion was great and we were appre- 
hensive that the men would kill each other by shooting in oppo- 
site directions. From the natives, there was now no danger, as 
those in the other Lodges remained quiet. In vain did we 
call out to the men to spare the women ; take care of yourselves. 
They continued on in the same order until they thought the 
whole of the inmates were killed. In fact, one half could not 
understand us when we did call. Two families, I believe, were 
killed, three men, two or three women, a boy and a girl. To 
this point I cannot speak positively, as I saw none after they 
were down, but have the information from those who killed 
them, however, it was made a doubt whether the men were dead 
or not, as they were not seen after, but I am almost positive 
that I was not mistaken in the two I saw drop. The truth is 
we did not lose time to look after them, but went off to the 
other Lodge, and remained there a few minutes, for Mr. Mc- 
Leod, who surrounded by the remains of the party, joined us. 
Well, really, Gentlemen, said he, what is the meaning of all 
this confusion? Whv, Sir, answered I, with some warmth, for 
I was piqued such equivocating conduct, it proceeds from you 
not letting us know, that we were so near the Clallums; we 



Earliest Expedition Against Puget Sound Indians 25 

were led to understand that they were upon a portage, and here 
we find our canoe alone and amongst them before we are aware 
of it. If, added I, Mr. McLeod, you will only let us know your 
plans, you have young men with you ready at any risk to exe- 
cute them for you. My dear Sir, replied he, I do not doubt 
it, but how can I form plans? I know no more what is going 
on than yourselves! ! Mr. Dease now observed that we ought 
to know the arrangements, as a few of the men appeared to 
be aware of them, and if, added he, -if we get any information 
it is from them. This touched Mr. McLeod, and he told Dease 
that it was not the first time, he had heard this same remark 
from him, and that he should answer for it hereafter. Really 
Mr. McLeod, said I, this is not a time or before these men, 
for altercations amongst ourselves. If we have done wrong — I 
dp not say you have done wrong, it is all well as it has hap- 
pened, and after a few more casual observations preparations 
were made to continue en route. 

We found a fine large canoe, said by the Indians to be the 
one in which the murderers followed Mr. McKenzie, able to 
contain 20 Men ; it appeared too ;iew ; This we took and em- 
barked, without once enquiring who was in the other Lodge. 
I saw a good many men there and it was well for them that a 
council did not sit to determine their fate, for I should have 
voted hard against the whole as I thought it more than prob- 
able that they were Clallums also, and betrayed the other 
Lodge to save themselves. We could at all events have been 
justified in using them as such. The head of one of the families 
killed is said to be the brother-in-law of the principal murderer 
and the spot of the Camp near where Mr. McKenzie was 
killed. 

Having given a brief account of what I was myself a wit- 
ness to, I shall now note a few observations which passed at 
the Canoes. Mr. McLeod, I am told, reached our canoe just 
as the first shots were fired. There, said he, is four shots, the 
four Indians are dead, and one or two of the men were occa- 
sionally running off to the Lodge, but were called back, how- 
ever, some would not return, observing that they did not come 
to look on. But when the last shots were heard, then cried 
Mr. McLeod is treachery. One of the men told him that if he 
thought so they had better go to our assistance. Oh! no, was 
the answer, surely eight men were enough for so few Indians. 
In the meantime he heard all was over and left the canoes. 
When along the road to us he observed, here I who ought to 
have been the first find myself the last. 

We got to the portage just after sunrise. The Clallums we 
expected to find, were off, but their fires still alight. We passed 
on until we got off Cape Townshend, were we put ashore for 
Breakfast and saw the Cadboro'. All the Indians except Inter- 
preters left us. Messrs. McLeod and Yale went on board, and 
we proceeded on for a mile, to a better spot for our Camp. 
The Gentlemen returned at 4 o'clock. Mr.. McLeod in much 



26 Frank Ermatinger 

better spirits from the arrangements of Capt. Simpson, who 
he told us had nearly succeeded in getting the woman, at least 
he has Hostages on board for her, said he. In the evening I 
was sent to tell the Captain that the land Party would be ready 
to get under way with him tomorrow morning. The men were 
sent back, who accompanied me, to the camp, but I avail myself 
of an invitation to remain on board for the night. 

Wednesday, 2nd. — This morning the Captain was prepared, 
but lost part of the Tide waiting for the men from shore, when 
they joined, the Vessel got under way and the canoes were towed 
for a few miles. Anchored off Protection Island and opposite 
a bay, where we saw a village of Clallums. The men encamped 
upon the island and were watered from the Vessel. 

Two women came to us from a Village, but what their object 
was I could not learn. 

I remained on board until next night and before going ashore 
I told the Captain that I would propose an attack upon the 
village off us, to which he said he could soon run us close in, 
but upon mentioning it to Mr. McLeod, he merely observed, 
without consideration, that Captain Simpson was aware his 
object was to proceed on. 

Mr. Yale very ill. 

Thursday, 3rd. — We again kept close to the vessel and fol- 
lowed with the Tide until we came to New Dungeness, where 
we cast anchor, as near to a large Village of CJallums as the 
Vessel could be towed. Mr. Dease was sent with the men hav- 
ing water from the vessel, to a sand bank some distance off, to 
cook and ordered to return at night. A chief came off to us and 
received every attention, in order that he might, I suppose, 
return again. He promised to use his influence in restoring the 
woman and to visit us to-morrow. In the evening before Mr. 
Dease had returned, a large body of Indians collected, armed, 
singing and yelping before us. The Captain put the Vessel in 
a posture of attack, and being apprehensive of the safety of our 
men ashore, he would immediately have commenced upon some 
large Canoes that were making off in their direction, two can- 
nons were levelled and every preparation made, without a dis- 
senting voice, but the seamen had no sooner got the lighted 
match over the touchhole ready, than Mr. McLeod run to the 
Captain and said, here a fellow of yours Captain wishes to send 
the whole to Hell, not at all, Sir, he will do nothing without 
orders, then turning to the man who had the match called out 
to him to lay it down. Here was a fine chance lost. The In- 
dians went off in triumph, and Mr. Dease after seeing the men 
well surfeited with pea soup at the expense of the Captain's 
water returned and we all slept on board. Much talk, to pro- 
cure the woman, but not a word of the ostensible cause of our 
Trip. This Helen of ours, said I, will cause another seige as 
long as that of Troy. 

Friday, 4th. — Everything remained in much the unsettled state 
as yesterday and bore evident marks of indecision. This led to 



Earliest Expedition Against Puget Sound Indians 27 

an altercation between our commander and the Captain. The 
latter having alluded upon deck, to something that Mr. McLeod 
had previously told him with respect to his plans, I did not 
myself hear correctly what it was, the former denied it, but the 
Captain was positive and said he could appeal to any gentleman 
present, whether it was not so, all were silent as the appeal 
was not directly made, and Mr. McLeod still persisting that 
he had not said any such thing, ultimately irritated the Captain, 
who with some warmth repeated you did, Sir, upon my honour, 
you did and my honour I hold sacred, and then left the deck. 
Mr. Dease and I were ordered to escort the men to the same 
bank again, to cook their peas, but returned immediately they 
had done. They made application to go to the main shore, ob- 
serving the natives would think they were afraid, however, were 
not allowed. 

Xhe little chief was off again, and a Sinahomis chief called the 
Frenchman, with a few of his followers also visited us, the 
bringing of the woman still evaded. Much was said about her, 
to which I paid no attention. Mr. Dease intimated to me that 
in a conversaion he had with Mr. McLeod to-day, the latter had 
said he would presently drive him mad, and told Mr. Dease 
to beg of me, for God's sake to let him alone. This quite sur- 
prised me, as I am not conscious of a single observation hav- 
ing fallen from me that ought to have given the slightest of- 
fence. I have certainly said that I wished the business was 
brought to a point, as by our measures we were giving the In- 
dians too much time to collect if they wished to resist, or to 
go off if they do not, and upon one occasion I remarked that it 
was too far to come to see the Cadboro' fire a gun. At another 
time I told Mr. McLeod that Mr. Connolly would be anxious 
to be off for the interior. Let him go was the reply, how the 
deuce can he go, Sir, said I, and his men here. Well then let 
him stop. If these casual remarks have tended to distract Mr. 
McLeod I am sorry that I made them, but it was with no view 
to do so. Mr. Dease went further, for he proposed to him, so 
he told Mr. Yale and I to take the command and go ashore 
with the men, if Mr. McLeod felt any reluctance to go himself. 

•This morning the little chief and another Indian of consid- 
erable importance in the village, the former primly dressed in 
a tinsel laced cloth.coat, came off in a small canoe by themselves 
to the Vessel and were as usual kindly received, but after strut- 
ting the deck for some time the Frenchman's canoe was seen 
coming alongside, when from some cause or other they' took 
an abrupt departure. Mr. McLeod called out to them arreter, 
arreter, le done, and all was in an uproar, but the Indians see- 
ing the bustle only made the more haste to get away. He then 
called to the men Tirer dessus and guns were immediately pre- 
sented Arreter they were lowered. Tirer done and six or 
seven shots are immediately off, one after the other. The re- 
port of the guns brought the Captain upon deck, who had only 
a few minutes before left it, and asked who had given orders 



28 Frank Ermatinger 

to fire. It was I, said Mr. McLeod. Well, Sir, you had no right 
so to do on board this Vessel, I am commander here. Why did 
not they stop when I called to them, was the reply. Sir, said 
the Captain, with some warmth, they were under the protec- 
tion of the ships, and if you had told me that you wished to de- 
tain them I would have made the smallest boy I have do it. 
In the meantime a canoe of the Iroquois were off to the bodies, 
the Little Chief they found dead, and • he was stript of his 
clothes and scalped in an instant, and the latter, was placed upon 
a pole. They were then about to commence upon the other, who 
we perceived was not dead, and at the request of the Captain, 
they were ordered to desist. He was brought on board, and it 
was found that the ball had only slightly grazed his skull. The 
wound was dressed, he received a Blanket, and a guard was 
placed over him. As the business has begun it is necessary npw, 
said the Captain, to make the most of it, to which purpose the 
ship was a second time prepared and without further ceremony 
a cannonading commenced upon the Village, which appeared 
instantly deserted. There, said the Captain, now is your time, 
Mr. McLeod, to land and destroy it. Embarque or was called out 
in all quarters and the canoes were immediately manned. Mr. 
Yale (still seriously ill) and I were just getting down the side 
of the Vessel, when Mr. McLeod put his head over the gunwales 
and faltered Oh nos gens ce ne vaut pas la peine, and we as- 
cended again. Well, then, said the Captain, all we have done 
is useless. We ought now to destroy the Village, and after 
some few words, that I did not distinctly hear Mr. McLeod 
said, well, Sir, since you insist upon it — No, No, Mr. McLeod, 
I do not, called out the Captain. However, we embarked and 
went ashore. When just landing a few hundred yards above 
the village three cannons were fired upon it and we destroyed 
the whole. There was about thirty good canoes of which we took 
four for our return and the rest were broke or Burnt. A large 
quantity of provisions, train oil, etc., etc., which after the men 
had helped themselves to what they chosed was with the build- 
ings also set fire to. A mUsket, Mr. McKenzie's bedcloth, to- 
gether with a few trifling articles belonging to his Party were 
found. Upon the whole the damage done to their property is 
great,, and will, I trust, be seriously felt for spme time to come, 
but I could wish we had been allowed to do more to the ras- 
cals themselves. In their hurry to decamp when the vessel's 
guns were fired, they left two small children whom we have on 
board, until some arrangements can be made. On our return 
to the Vessel we saw a body of natives a little distance from 
us, but when it was proposed that we should go and make them 
retreat Mr. McLeod said the men must have time and no fur- 
ther notice was taken of them during the day, yet they remained 
stationary, and in the evening a few of them came opposite 
us and fired two or three shots. 

Our commander is evidently pleased with the day's success, 



Earliest Expedition Against Puget Sound Indians 2Q 

and is in the highest spirits. However, little credit is due us 
for the destruction of the propery. 

Sunday, 6th. — We remained on board, inactive, and the nat- 
ives showed themselves upon the point. A negotiation was 
commenced. The Frenchman acting for us, to exchange the 
man taken yesterday for the woman so much has been said 
about. The two children were put on shore this morning, and 
we saw a native come and carry them off. 

At dinner we had an extra glass of wine, and the consequence 
was an altercation between Mr. McLeod and I, with respect 
to our measures. He said he had acted upon his orders, and I 
answered he was wrong to receive such orders, as it was im- 
possible to act upon them without appearing like cowards be- 
fore our men and the Indians. The fact is, if as stated, the 
orders must have been given in contradiction, to the opening 
speech made to the men. 

Monday, 7th. — This day our heroine was brought on board, 
and the prisoner set at liberty. The news from the natives that 
the friends of the seven they make out to have killed upon the 
first instant had to revenge the cause of their deaths, killed two 
of the principal murderers of Mr. McKenzie, &c, and that the 
shot from the Vessel killed eight, that one native is missing, 
which will, according to their computation, make twenty-five. 
This, I believe, to be a made-up story amongst themselves, how- 
ever, as so little has been actually done, it is as well that the 
report should get to Cheenook and be made the most of. 

Tuesday, 8th. — Early this morning the Vessel, in consequence 
of Mr. McLeod's arranging of last night, got under way, and 
seen us back to the place. About noon we took an abrupt de- 
parture, without having come to any settlement with the nat- 
ives, either for war or peace, or ever having, to my knowledge, 
once mentioning to them the object of our coming through the 
Sound, at least the murder of Mr. McKenzie and his men was 
never enquired into, nor their names once mentioned. However, 
we commenced our march, leaving the Captain to shift for him- 
self. At the village where the natives were said to have fol- 
lowed them from we debarked and burnt it. But I here note 
my candid opinion that, if a single individual had been seen 
about, even this would not have been done. A promise was 
made to pass at the Frenchman's Camp, who had not yet been 
settled with for the interest he took in our Cartel, yet this was 
not observed. The watch altered from four to ten men, this 
time as before. 

Tuesday, 15th. — We reached the Fort this morning, without 
having met with anything worth observation on our return.