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What did it take to cross Clatsop in the 1800s?

Author Jerry Sutherland gives Sept. 16 lecture at Lewis and Clark park

Published on September 11, 2018 3:01PM

‘Crossing Clatsop in the 1800s’ title slide.

Courtesy Lewis and Clark National Historical Park

‘Crossing Clatsop in the 1800s’ title slide.

Author Jerry Sutherland.

Courtesy Columbia River Maritime Museum

Author Jerry Sutherland.

‘Calvin Tibbets: Oregon’s First Pioneer’ by Jerry Sutherland.

‘Calvin Tibbets: Oregon’s First Pioneer’ by Jerry Sutherland.

FORT CLATSOP — Author Jerry Sutherland returns to Lewis and Clark National Historical Park, Fort Clatsop, for the park’s next “In Their Footsteps” event.

At 1 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 16, Sutherland will present “Crossing Clatsop in the 1800s.”

After building Fort Clatsop on the west bank of the Lewis and Clark River in December 1805, William Clark and his salt-craving men blazed a trail across Clatsop to the ocean in search of a good place to boil sea water — a trip commemorated by the Fort to Sea Trail in 2005.

In the process of determining the trail’s original route and its relationship to modern Perkins Lane, Sutherland learned of involvements by Clatsop Indians as well as summer vacationers taking wagons to Seaside after arriving at Clatsop Landing on sternwheelers.

He was fascinated that the Neacoxie River’s 1806 outlet into the sea, filled in soon after that by sand and diverted to the Necanicum River, had been pinpointed by geologists in 2004.

Sutherland will share all this using images of maps and original manuscripts. He will sign copies of his book and answer questions after the presentation.

Sutherland first researched early Clatsop transportation routes while writing “Calvin Tibbets: Oregon’s First Pioneer” (2016).

Other upcoming “In Their Footsteps” speaker series programs include:

• Oct. 21: “Altho’ no regular botanist” — Jefferson’s Reference to Lewis by Carol Lucas

• Nov. 18: “John Colter, Servant of the Corps” by Christopher Hodges

• Dec. 16: “Let’s Talk about Hummingbirds” by Barbara Linnett

• Jan. 20: “Historic Winter Transportation” by Richard Brenne

This forum, taking place the third Sunday of the month, is sponsored by the park and Lewis & Clark National Park Association. These programs are held in the Netul River Room of Fort Clatsop’s visitor center and are free of charge.

For more information, call the park at 503-861-2471, or check out nps.gov/lewi or Lewis and Clark National Historical Park on Facebook.


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