Antoine of Oregon - James Otis

My Work as Guide Ended

Here at the Dalles, as I have said, the journey was nearly ended, and here it is that I, Antoine, who now three times have crossed from the Missouri to the Columbia River, have come to an end of my story-telling.

In guiding John Mitchell's company over this long journey of more than two thousand miles, I did no more than show them what I knew of woodcraft, how to kill the buffalo, to stalk the antelope, to creep up on the elk, and, what in the Indian country is of the greatest importance, how to form camp so that they might be in least danger of a surprise.

My mother had come over this long stretch of country with fewer hardships than any other woman in the company. She had been, as you might say, familiar with travel in the wilderness, for twice had she been out with my father on his trading trips, and knew how to take advantage of this time of rest, or of that period of toil.