Second Reinforcements


     By March of 1837, it was determined to establish a second mission at the Dalles. It would be called Wascopam .Preparations began and by September 1837 a second group of reinforcements arrived to aid the mission.  It included Rev. David Leslie, his wife and 3 children; Miss Margaret J. Smith, who later married Dr. William Bailey and Rev. Henry Kirk White Perkins who married Miss Elvira Johnson November 21, 1837.
    With the additional help it was decided that constuction of a hospital to aid in caring for the sick was needed.  Construction began but progress was slow and by the time it was completed in 1840 it had to be used to house the reinforcements of 1839.  Meanwhile, Lee, still in need of more assistance, decided he would have to return east to plead his case in person.Leaving behind his pregnant wife, he left for the east on April 9, 1838 accompanied by Mr. Ewing of Missourii, Mr. Edwards and two of the Mission Indian boys, W.M. Brooks and Thomas Adams.
    In June the mission was visited by great sorrow upon the death of Anna Maria Pittman Lee and her infant son.  They were buried together in a single grave at the mission.  She was the first white woman to die in Oregon.  A marble headstone marked her place of interment near the place where the missionaries had commenced their labors in 1834, on the bank of the Willamette.  The bodies were later removed and reinterred in Lee Mission Cemetery in Salem.
   An express was sent to the states to inform Jason Lee of his loss.  He was overtaken in a little more than 60 days at the Shawnee Mission.  It was with a heavy heart that he continued on his journey.
    In August, Mr. Leslie along with Mrs. White and her infant came from the Dalles station to visit at the Willamette Mission.  On their return to the Dalles their canoe was overturned at the rapids of the Cascades.  Mr. Leslie, though unable to swim, managed to hang onto the canoe and he caught hold of Mrs. White.  Indians immediately came to their rescuse and were able to pull them to shore.  On righting the canoe, the lifeless body of Mrs. White's infant was found floating in the baggage.  The party was taken to Ft. Vancouver where they received aid.    

The Great Reinforcement: