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The tribes of the High Plains had very different attitudes from white men about intimate relations.

Plains Indians believed that spiritual power passed between people during coupling. By sharing their wives or daughters, they could obtain the power of the other person. And with their advanced technology and guns, no one was thought to have more power than the men of the Corps of Discovery.

But relations with Indian women came at a price. Previous encounters with French and British traders had infected many Indian women with syphilis. Lewis and Clark had to treat some of their men using rather dubious mercury pills.

If you are able to lay your hands on a copy of a Lewis and Clark’s favorite cookbook, you will not find any reference to "dog chops." In some areas, such as eastern Washington, wild game was hard to come by. But dogs would do if dogs were all that they could get. Only Clark refused, as he just couldn’t force himself to eat dog.

There are more statues of Sacagawea in the United States than that of any other woman. She kept her head in a crisis and was quite helpful in identifying edible greens and roots in the High Plains.

She was nicknamed Janey by members of the expedition. Sacagawea was very familiar with the area in western Montana of her home tribe, the Shoshone, and was handy as a translator. In addition, the very fact that she and her baby were traveling with the expedition was a signal to other tribes that the party was peaceful because no Indian war party ever traveled with an Indian woman and her child. Despite all of these attributes, Sacagawea was not a guide as has often been reported.

Lewis and Clark had maps of the lower Missouri. Beyond that, they had to rely on verbal instructions from the Mandan tribe of North Dakota.

As often happens when someone is giving you travel instructions, the expedition arrived at a fork in the Missouri the Mandans had not mentioned. They knew the river was the route into the mountains, but which fork was the real Missouri?

After more than a week using two separate scouting expeditions, Lewis and Clark made their decision; the south fork was the true Missouri. Even though all of their men disagreed, they followed Lewis and Clark anyway. Turned out Lewis and Clark were right.

By the end of the 19th Century, the exploits of the Corps of Discovery had been nearly forgotten. The original journals lay unnoticed in a library in Philadelphia, having never been published in their original form.

Even the history books of the time barely mentioned them and often dismissed them as having done little of significance. As the decades rolled by, the memory of Lewis and Clark gradually faded from the American public.

It wasn’t until Reuben Thwaites published the original journals in 1906 that their reputations begin to recover.

Neither Lewis nor Clark was a very good speller. Combined with writing in less than ideal circumstance, its little wonder misspellings were sprinkled throughout the journals.

When Thwaites published the journals, he retained the original spelling and punctuation. Clark was especially prone to spelling errors. The most glaring example was when he spelled the word "Sioux’" 20 different ways. But, since he was an explorer and not an English teacher, it didn’t really matter.

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