What is a Canoe Worth?
by Jack Wright
(a) six elk
(b) one wife
(c) one uniform laced-up coat, plus 1/2 carrot of tobacco
Answer: Any of the above, according to the journal of the Lewis & Clark
Expedition. On March 17, 1806, Lewis chronicled his purchase of 2 canoes from the
Clatsop Indians, for the (a) and (c) prices above. Canoes were "an article of
the greatest value, in their mode of traffic". The expedition wanted another
canoe, but didn't have any wives to trade for it. This account is from the book
American Odyssey, by I.H. Eide, and was printed in the June 13, 1970, TVCC Newsletter,
submitted by Don Hixson.
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