A young Shoshoni Indian girl named Little Bird was kidnapped by a band of Minnetaree
warriors to be a slave for the Minnetaree women. The Minnetarees renamed Little Bird,
Sakaakka Wiiya, meaning Bird Woman. She had to work very hard for the Minnetarees. Three
years later she was traded to a French Fur trader named Toussaint Charbonneau to be his
Charbonneau and Bird Woman lived close to the Minnetaree and Mandan village. In October
1804, captains Meriwether Lewis, and William Clark came to the Mandan village. Lewis and
Clark had been sent by the President, Thomas Jefferson to explore a huge piece of land
that the United States had just bought from France. This land was called the Louisiana
Purchase. When Lewis and Clark found out that Charbonneau could speak Minnetaree, they
hired him as an interpreter. Lewis and Clark also needed someone to interprete Shoshoni.
They knew that Bird Woman was Shoshoni, but she was only sixteen and expecting a baby very
soon. They really needed another interpreter so they decided to talk to her. They told her
that it was going to be a hard journey and they did not know what to expect, but Sacajawea
(Lewis and Clarks spelling) was now used to hardship.
It was decided that they could not leave her behind. On February 11,1805, Sacajawea
gave birth to a baby boy. His name was Jean Baptiste, which meant Little Chief, but
everyone called him Pomp, or Pompey. The expedition continued. When they came to the
Shoshoni Village Sacajawea had a choice of staying or going. She decided to go.
Lewis and Clark soon realized that Sacajawea was invaluable to them. Not only as an
intepreter, but as a guide as well. The expedition was a success. With the help of
Sacajawea, Lewis and Clark reached the Pacific Ocean. They had maps and journals
describing all of their travels. They had found a way to travel all the way across the
Little is known about Sacajawea once the expedition ended. Pompey was raised by William
Clark. He was well educated and even traveled to Europe. He became mayor of Mission San
Luis Rey, California. Most experts believe that Sacajawea died in 1812 from a fever.
Others believe that she lived to be 100 years old. What is known for sure is that Lewis
and Clarks expedition may never have been successful without the help of this brave
This was a very good book. When I first started reading this book I thought it was sad
but then it got a lot better, and Lewis and Clark would never have completed their journey
without Sacajawea. If you like true- life adventure, I would recommend this book.