Lewis and Clark
Lewis and Clark Page
Lewis and Clark
November 07, 1805: Reached Pacific Ocean

Posted November 2021

November 07, 1805
Arrived at the mouth of the Columbia River

in 1804-06, Captains Meriwether Lewis and William Clark led about 40 soldiers and boatmen on an epic journey. President Thomas Jefferson commissioned this "Corps of Discovery" to find a route to the Pacific Ocean through the newly acquired Louisiana territory. Along the way, they mapped the land, recorded its resources, and contacted its native inhabitants.

The landscape has changed since Lewis and Clark explored it: rivers have been dammed, forests cut over, prairies plowed under, and roads built to the horizon. Although remnants of the wilderness still exist, imagine this land as Lewis and Clark first saw it two centuries ago.

Expedition Map
Expedition Map
Lewis and Clark Route on a map with modern borders
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Indian Presents
Indian Presents:
Purchased by Lewis in preparation for the expedition to the West. In a secret message to Congress on January 18, 1803, President Thomas Jefferson had asked for $2,500 to explore lands west to the Pacific. Jefferson worked closely with Lewis, co-commander of the expedition, to ensure that he was well-prepared to anticipate the party's needs. While the party ran out of such luxuries as whiskey, tobacco, and salt, they had plenty of rifles, powder, paper, and ink.
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The expedition made notable contributions to science, but scientific research was not the main goal of the mission

President Thomas Jefferson commissioned the expedition shortly after the Louisiana Purchase in 1803 to:
  1. Explore and to map the newly acquired territory
  2. To find a practical route across the western half of the continent
  3. To establish an American presence in this territory before European powers attempted to establish claims in the region.
The campaign's secondary objectives were scientific and economic:
  1. To study the area's plants, animal life, and geography
  2. To establish trade with local Native American tribes.
The expedition returned 3 years later to St. Louis to report its findings to Jefferson; with maps, sketches, and journals in hand

Jefferson's goals:

  • To find the most direct and practicable water communication across this continent, for the purposes of commerce
  • Declaring US sovereignty over the land occupied by the many different Native American tribes along the Missouri River
  • Getting an accurate sense of the resources in the recently completed Louisiana Purchase

Lewis and Clark Expedition:

  • From August 31, 1803 to September 25, 1806
  • Also known as the Corps of Discovery Expedition
  • It was the United States expedition to cross the newly acquired western portion of the country after the Louisiana Purchase
  • The Corps of Discovery was a select group of U.S. Army and civilian volunteers under the command of Captain Meriwether Lewis and his close friend Second Lieutenant William Clark
  • The expedition made its way westward, and crossed the Continental Divide of the Americas before reaching the Pacific Coast

Other Wikipedia Citingshttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lewis_and_Clark_Expedition