Walla Wallas: The Lewis And Clark Expedition

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The first encounter with Euro-Americans for the Walla Wallas was the Lewis and Clark Expedition. First meeting in 1805, the Americans promised to Walla Walla chief Yellepit they would visit with the people after seeing the Pacific Ocean. The party returned in April 1806 and stayed at Yellepit's village, located on the Columbia River near the mouth of the Walla Walla River.[2] During a transaction Yellepit presented Clark with a white horse in return for a copper kettle. The Americans had none in supply however, so Clark gave Yellepit his own sword, along with a quantity of gunpowder and musket balls.[3] Lewis and Clark also gave Yellepit a peace medal engraved with a portrait of President Thomas Jefferson, to be worn around the neck, and a small United States flag. Yellepit, Washington was later named after him. …show more content…
About five miles upriver from Yellepit's village on the confluence of the Snake River and the Columbia, Thompson ordered a pole be placed. An attached letter to the pole claimed the territory for the British Crown, and stated the NWC intended to build a trading post at the site. Thompson's pole and letter were intended for the traders of the Pacific Fur Company, an American rival of the NWC. Continuing downriver, Thompson stopped at Yellepit's village and discovered the flag and medal left by the Americans. Thompson found Yellepit very friendly and intelligent, even encouraging Thompson's plan to set up a nearby trading post.[4] For various reasons the post was not built until 1818, when the NWC established Fort Nez Perces at the mouth of the Walla Walla River. During the summer of 1811, Thompson met also the Walla Walla head chief, Tumatapum, and his equal-ranking Quillquills Tuckapesten, Nimipu head chief, Ollicott, Cayuse head chief, and, probably, Illim-Spokanee, Spokane heade

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