Lewis and Clark Expedition had a Newfoundland Companion

July 25th, 2008 by Dan

Did you know that only one individual was killed during the explorations of North America by Lewis and Clark during the early 1800′s? Part of that might be due to the presence of a Newfoundland named “Seaman”. Newfoundlands are a faithful breed that has a reputation for being exceptional with children. The breed can also be used to pull carts and rescue drowning people, so it seems like a dog like “Seaman” would be useful on a rugged expedition!

Seaman was bought by Lewis in Pittsburgh, PA for $20 – an incredibly expensive amount to pay for a dog in that time! However his money was well spent. On May 29, 1805 the giant dog saved the team from a buffalo who invaded their camp during the night. They were camped on a river in what is now central Montana. Here is a quote from Lewis’s journal:

“last night we were all allarmed by a large buffaloe bull, when he came near the tent, my dog saved us by causing him to change his course”

Seaman the Newfoundland Statue

I bet Lewis was happy he laid out that $20 after this incident!

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4 Responses to “Lewis and Clark Expedition had a Newfoundland Companion”

  1. Lindsay Says:

    Aw, I’m sure Seaman saved their lives more than once. What a good boy.

  2. jamie Says:

    wow that was pretty awsome to bring that dog on that trip

  3. Angela Says:

    I think this is secretly why my husband wants a Newfoundland.

  4. Dionne Says:

    Believe that is one of the reason my boyfriend, has 5 Newfoundland. They are great dogs, gentle giants.

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