“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Near Astoria in Clatsop County, Oregon — The American West (Northwest)

The Columbia's Estuary

The Columbia's Estuary Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Barry Swackhamer, September 23, 2017
1. The Columbia's Estuary Marker
Caption: (bottom left) "Great numbers of Swan Geese Brant Ducks and Gulls in this great bend which is Crouded with low Islands covered with weeds grass &c. and overflowed every flood tide."
Inscription.  The Corps of Discovery entered the marshes and sloughs of the Columbia's estuary in early November of 1805, but violent weather pinned them down along the river's banks for days. While camped across the river William Clark lamented, O! how horrible is the day." The explorers passed this site on November 26, 1805, after crossing the river in search of a winter campsite. Stopping at a nearby Cathlamet Indian village to purchase fish and wappato at what Clark considered "Imoderate pricie's," the party camped near present-day Svenson.
In this estuary the explorers found evidence of the Pacific Flyway -- hundreds of migratory birds. The birds provided food - a welcome change from dried fish and dog meat -- but their calls also kept the party awake at night. They were emensely noumerous, and their noise horrid," exclaimed William Clark.

(Side-bar on right:)
Meriwether Lewis and William Clark were not scientists; they were military men who faithfully followed President Jefferson's orders to carefully note the plants and animals of the West. During the winter of 1805-06 at Fort Clatsop, Lewis described
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35 mammals, 50 birds, 10 reptiles and fish, and 5 invertebrates -- of these, 11 mammals, 11 birds, and 2 fish were new to science.
Erected by National Park Service.
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Science & MedicineWaterways & Vessels. In addition, it is included in the Former U.S. Presidents: #03 Thomas Jefferson, and the Lewis & Clark Expedition series lists. A significant historical date for this entry is November 26, 1805.
Location. 46° 10.188′ N, 123° 41.346′ W. Marker is near Astoria, Oregon, in Clatsop County. Marker is on Burnside Loop near Columbia River Highway (U.S. 30). Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 39392 Burnside Loop, Astoria OR 97103, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 7 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. The Lewis and Clark Expedition (here, next to this marker); First on the Pacific: The Astoria Custom House (approx. 5.8 miles away); Imagine the Scene: Astoria's Custom House - 1849 (approx. 5.8 miles away); Custom House Reconstruction (approx. 5.8 miles away); Fire Station No. 2 (approx. 6 miles away); a different marker also named The Lewis and Clark Expedition (approx. 6.3 miles away); "Ocian in view, O! the Joy..."
The Columbia's Estuary Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Barry Swackhamer, September 23, 2017
2. The Columbia's Estuary Marker
The marker is on the right.
(approx. 6.3 miles away); Comcomly / Indian Burial Canoe (approx. 6.3 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Astoria.
Credits. This page was last revised on February 2, 2018. It was originally submitted on February 2, 2018, by Barry Swackhamer of Brentwood, California. This page has been viewed 120 times since then and 26 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on February 2, 2018, by Barry Swackhamer of Brentwood, California.

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Nov. 29, 2023