On Sunday, May 1st as they attend the funeral service of Mrs. Satterlee the Fur Company’s boat suddenly appeared on its voyage up the river. This was a shock to all of them as it wasn’t suppose to arrive this early. The captain refused to stop and it was later learned he had not been told about the arrangements to pick them up.
“A new burden had suddenly been thrust upon Whitman’s
shoulders. He, more than any of the others, realized the absolute necessityfor the protection of their small party while traveling through hostile Indiancountry. Unless he and the two women could get to the Oto Agency,about 300 miles distant, in time to join the Spalding party before thecaravan passed, no Oregon Mission could be established that year.” from the book Marcus & Narcissa Whitman and the Opening of Old Oregon by Clifford M Drury.