A New Transcription of Alexander Henry's Account of a Visit to the Mandan and Hidatsa Indians in 1806

Editor(s): Thomas D. Thiessen

Year: 1980


One of the most detailed and illuminating primary accounts of the fur trading operations of the North West Company is the daily journal kept by Alexander Henry, one of the company's employees and partner, from 1799 until his untimely death in 1814. Henry's original diary is now lost, but a copy of it survives in the Public Archives of Canada in the form of a handwritten copy purportedly made by one George Coventry in 1824. Elliott Coues edited and published the journal in 1897 under the title, New Light on the Early History of the Greater Northwest: The Manuscript Journals of Alexander Henry, Fur Trader of the Northwest Company, and of David Thompson, Official Geographer and Explorer of the same Company, 1799-1814 (Coues 1965). The Coventry copy, on which Coues' publication and this transcription are based, is described more fully in the "Discussion" section.

The document

that follows is a new, literal transcription of a portion

of his journal consisting of the entries covering the

period from July 7 through August 10, 1806, which describe

Henry's journey to and from the villages of the Mandan

and Hidatsa Indians near the confluence of the Knife

and Missouri rivers in present-day central North Dakota.

Cite this Record

A New Transcription of Alexander Henry's Account of a Visit to the Mandan and Hidatsa Indians in 1806. Thomas D. Thiessen. Lincoln, Nebraska: Midwest Archeological Center, National Park Service, Department of the Interior. 1980 ( tDAR id: 375646) ; doi:10.6067/XCV8MK6CM1

This Resource is Part of the Following Collections

Spatial Coverage

min long: -104.073; min lat: 47.122 ; max long: -100.679; max lat: 48.495 ;

Individual & Institutional Roles

Sponsor(s): Midwest Archaeological Center, National Park Service

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