While we’re on the subject of historical fiction, here’s the story behind that Sacajawea scene in Blue Thread.
It was easy to find information on the young Native American woman who helped to guide the Lewis and Clark Expedition to the Pacific. We’re L&C fans in Oregon, since these guys and Sacajawea traipsed through our forests to reach the ocean. You can still see their 1805-06 salt works in Seaside, OR.
And it was easy to find out about the statue of Sacajawea that was unveiled at Portland’s Lewis and Clark Exposition in 1905. Sculptor Alice Cooper designed the bronze statue, which was cast in New York State using copper from mines near Mount Saint Helens. After the Exposition, the statue was moved to its permanent spot in Washington Park. But then…hmm…several sources didn’t agree on the wording of the statue’s inscription.
Time to see for myself.
Last winter I went to the spot in northwest Portland where the fictional Josefsohns parked their fictional Oldsmobile and saw the real statue. Excellent. Camera in hand, I slogged through the wet grass (winter=rain in Washington Park, except on those rare sunny winter days when joy and amazement abound).
Ta dum! The inscription. And here it is for you all to see.
But wait, there’s more. I walked around to the front of the statue. Something had been added. No? Really?
See for yourself. Lipstick. Truth to tell, I haven’t been back to see Sacajawea in the past year. Anyone know the current state of her lips?