What happened to the MEN of the "Corps of
Discovery" after returning to civilization?
Not all of the members of the Corps of Discovery returned to St.
Louis in 1806.
Sergeant Charles Floyd died, in 1804, and other members didn't
go the distance, including those dismissed because of trouble they had
caused. Here is a re-cap of "Corps" who explored America west.
Enlisted men were granted land warrants for a total of 320 acres
each. Both captains (Meriwether Lewis & William Clark) were given 1,600
SERGEANT JOHN ORDWAY (1775 - 1817) - John purchased the land warrants
of his fellow members, William Werner and Jean Baptiste La Page. He
became an owner of extensive lands and attained some prosperity. He
married in Missouri, and he and his wife died in Missouri about 1817.
They left no survivors.
SERGEANT NATHANIEL HALE PRYOR ( 1772 - 1831)- Pryor remained in the
army and was a second lieutenant until 1810. He married an Osage girl,
and they had several children who were all given Indian names. He is
buried at Pryor, Mayes County, Oklahoma, where a monument has been
erected to his honor.
SERGEANT CHARLES FLOYD (1782 - 1804) Buried in Sioux City, Iowa.
SERGEANT PATRICK GASS - (1771 - 1870) - He served in the War of 1812,
married at the age of sixty to Maria Hamilton, aged twenty. They were
the parents of six children. He died at age ninety-nine years and is
buried at Brooke County Cemetery, at Wellsburg, West Virginia. He was
the first to publish a journal of the expedition in 1807.
PRIVATE JOHN COLTER (1775- 1813) - When the expedition was in route
home, Colter was honorably discharged on August 13, 1806. He returned to
the Yellowstone then headed for the upper Missouri to trap the rich
beaver country of the Blackfeet Indians. He escaped from the Blackfeet
in the famous encounter in which another Lewis and Clark member, John
Potts, was killed. Colter now had enough of the mountains and returned
to St. Louis. Back in Missouri he married a woman named "Sallie".
PRIVATE JOHN POTTS ( 1776-1810) - John joined Manuel Lisa's trapping
party of 1807 to the upper Missouri. In 1810 he was a member of Andrew
Henry's party to the Three Forks of the Missouri. Here he again met John
Colter, where they were attacked by the Blackfeet, and John Potts was
PRIVATE JOSEPH FIELDS ( 1772 - 1825 - 28) - Fields received a warrant
for land located in Franklin County, Missouri. William Clark noted he
was dead by 1825-28."
PRIVATE REUBEN FIELDS (1771 - 1822) - A brother of Joseph, above.
Captain Clark recommended Reuben for a lieutenancy in the army. In 1808,
in Indiana, he married. Reuben died in late 1822 in Jefferson County,
PRIVATE JOHN SHIELDS ( 1769 - 1809) - Shields spent a year trapping
with his kinsman, Daniel Boone, in Missouri, and the following year with
Squire Boone in Indiana.
PRIVATE WILLIAM E. BRATTON ( 1778 - 1841) - Bratton enlisted in the
War of 1812. Bratton died November 11, 1841, at Waynetown, Indiana, and
is buried in the pioneer cemetery there. A monument marks the final
PRIVATE ALEXANDER HAMILTON WILLARD (1778 - 1865) - He married in 1807
and had seven sons and five daughters. He is buried at Franklin, near
PRIVATE PIERRE CRUZATTE (? - 1825 - 28) - He was killed by 1825-1828.
PRIVATE GEORGE GIBSON (? - 1809) - Married after the expedition, but
died in St. Louis in 1809.
PRIVATE FRANCOIS (WILLIAM) LABICHE (Unknown) - Went to Washington as
interpreter to the group of Indians accompanying Captain Lewis. Clark
reported, " Our Francois was alive in St. Louis, or nearby, after 1828".
PRIVATE SILAS GOODRICH (? - 1825 - 28) - Re-enlisted in the army.
Clark notes he was dead by 1825-1828.
PRIVATE JOHN B. THOMPSON (? - 1825 - 28) - Clark notes that he was
dead by the years 1825-1828.
PRIVATE PETER M. WEISER ( 1781 - ?) - Between 1808and 1810 he was on
the Three Forks of the Missouri, and on the Snake River. He was killed
prior to the years 1825 - 1828. The town of Weiser, and the Weiser River
in Idaho, are named for him.
PRIVATE JOHN COLLINS (? - 1823) - Was killed while in a fight with
the Arikara on June 2, 1823.
PRIVATE HUGH HALL ( 1772 - ?) - Clark notes that he drank and was one
of the more quarrelsome of the party. He is reported in St. Louis in
1809 and was living in 1828.
PRIVATE GEORGE SHANNON (1785 - 1836) - In 1807, he was one of the
force under Ensign Nathaniel Pryor which attempted to return Chief
Sheheke to his home among the Mandans. He was elected a member of the
Kentucky House of Representatives in 1820 and 1822. He was a State
senator from Missouri for a time, then returned to law. He died suddenly
in court at Palmyra, Missouri, in 1836, aged forty-nine, and is buried
in that city.
PRIVATE WILLIAM WERNER (Unknown) - Assisted General Clark for a time
as Indian Agent in Missouri. In 1828 he was reported to be in Virginia.
PRIVATE JOSEPH WHITEHOUSE ( 1775 - ?) - Clark, in his account of the
members made during the years 1825-1828, lists the name, Joseph
Whitehouse, without comment.
PRIVATE THOMAS HOWARD (1779- ?) - A private named Thomas Howard,
served as boatman, and left Fort Adams in May 1808, under Capt. H.
Stark, U.S. 1st Infantry. He married Genevieve Roy in St. Louis and had
a son, Joseph.
PRIVATE ROBERT FRAZIER ( ? - 1837) - He accompanied Captain Lewis to
Washington and Virginia, and then returned to St. Louis. He was reported
in several scrapes with the law in St. Louis until the year 1815. He
died in Franklin County, Missouri, in 1837.
ALONG WITH THE "CORPS" PARTY:
SEAMAN - Captain Lewis' Newfoundland dog.
YORK (1770 - ?) - Clark's man-servant who was willed to Clark by his
father. He died of cholera in Tennessee.
INTERPRETER, GEORGE DROUILLARD (? - 1810) - He was killed by the
Blackfeet Indians in 1810.
INTERPRETER, Toussaint Charbonneau (1759 - 1843) - Charbonneau
resided among the Hidatsa and Mandans from 1806 until late fall of 1809.
Then, he, Sacagawea and Pomp boarded a Missouri Fur Company barge and
traveled to St. Louis, where he cashed in his voucher for 320 acres. In
1811, Charbonneau took employment with the Missouri Fur Company.
Departing up the river with Sacagawea, he left his son Jean Baptiste
(Pomp) in the care of Clark, who would see to the boy’s education.
Charbonneau’s estate was settled in 1843 by his son, Jean Baptiste
Superintendents of Provisions