Black Buffalo’s Camp Site

Wednesday, September 26, 1804

The expedition and Black Buffalo together traveled 4 1/2 miles to his village (now Oahe Campground 3), where a feast and celebration were being prepared. Chief Black Buffalo raised the pipe of peace from its stand of forked sticks and pointed it to the heavens, the four quarters of the globe, and the earth. After smoking and speeches, the group feasted on cooked dog, pemmican (buffalo meat and fat), and ground potato. At dark, a large fire was made in the center, and the dance began.

Thursday, September 27, 1804

The men of the expedition were invited by Chief Black Buffalo back to the large council house for another dance, which lasted until about 1:00 p.m. Lewis and Clark and company returned to their keelboat, accompanied by two chiefs. As the pirogue approached the keelboat, the steersman misjudged, cutting the metal anchor cable.

Friday, September 28, 1804

After searching in vain for the lost anchor, the captains prepared to depart. Several of the Lakota warriors seized the rope holding the keelboat, and refused to leave. Captain Clark negotiated with Chief Black Buffalo, Black Buffalo jerked the rope back from his soldiers and ordered his men ashore. The confrontation over, the expedition continued upstream.

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Fort Pierre, South Dakota 57532, United States

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Other Information

  • Hours Open

    Open 24 hours a day
  • Seasons Open

    all year round
  • Prices and Fees

  • Accessibility

    Parking at the site.
  • Eco Friendly Notes

    Please keep trash picked up.
  • Locally or Family Owned Notes

    Corps of Engineers property.
  • Pet Friendly Notes

    Pets allowed but clean up after.