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The Lewis and Clark Expedition, also known as the Corps of Discovery Expedition, was the first American expedition to cross what is now the western portion of the United States, departing in May, 1804 from near St. Louis on the Mississippi River, making their way westward through the continental divide to the Pacific coast.

The expedition was commissioned by President Thomas Jefferson shortly after the Louisiana Purchase in 1803, consisting of a select group of U.S. Army volunteers under the command of Captain Meriwether Lewis and his close friend Second Lieutenant William Clark. Their perilous journey lasted from May 1804 to September 1806. The primary objective was to explore and map the newly acquired territory, find a practical route across the Western half of the continent, and establish an American presence in this territory before Britain and other European powers tried to claim it.

The campaign's secondary objectives were scientific and economic: to study the area's plants, animal life, and geography, and establish trade with local Indian tribes. With maps, sketches and journals in hand, the expedition returned to St. Louis to report their findings to Jefferson.

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The Lewis and Clark Expedition, also known as the Corps of Discovery Expedition, was the first American expedition to cross what is now the western portion of the United States, departing in May, 1804 from near St. Louis on the Mississippi River, making their way westward through the continental divide to the Pacific coast.

The expedition was commissioned by President Thomas Jefferson shortly after the Louisiana Purchase in 1803, consisting of a select group of U.S. Army volunteers under the command of Captain Meriwether Lewis and his close friend Second Lieutenant William Clark. Their perilous journey lasted from May 1804 to September 1806. The primary objective was to explore and map the newly acquired territory, find a practical route across the Western half of the continent, and establish an American presence in this territory before Britain and other European powers tried to claim it.

The campaign's secondary objectives were scientific and economic: to study the area's plants, animal life, and geography, and establish trade with local Indian tribes. With maps, sketches and journals in hand, the expedition returned to St. Louis to report their findings to Jefferson. More...

 
    Thomas Jefferson, 3rd US President, 1801-1809
  Thomas Jefferson, 3rd US President, 1801-1809
Thomas Jefferson, author of the Declaration of Independence and the Statute of Virginia for Religious Freedom, third president of the United States 1801-1809, and founder of the University of Virginia, voiced the aspirations of a new America as no ot...
 
    William Clark, Lewis and Clark Expedition
  William Clark, Lewis and Clark Expedition
William Clark was an American explorer, soldier, Indian agent, and territorial governor. A native of Virginia, he would also grow up in pre-statehood Kentucky before later settling in what later became the state of Missouri. Along with Meriwether Lew...
 
    Meriwether Lewis, Lewis and Clark Expedition
  Meriwether Lewis, Lewis and Clark Expedition
Meriwether Lewis was an American explorer, soldier, and public administrator, best known for his role as the leader of the Lewis and Clark Expedition also known as the Corps of Discovery, with William Clark, whose mission was to explore the territory...
 
    Sacagawea, Lewis and Clark Expedition
  Sacagawea, Lewis and Clark Expedition
Sacagawea, also Sakakawea or Sacajawea, was a Lemhi Shoshone woman who helped the Lewis and Clark Expedition achieve each of its chartered mission objectives exploring the Louisiana Purchase. With the expedition, between 1804 and 1806, she traveled t...
 
    George Catlin, Painter Native Americans
  George Catlin, Painter Native Americans
George Catlin was an American painter, author and traveler who specialized in portraits of Native Americans in the Old West. Following a brief career as a lawyer, Catlin produced two major collections of paintings of American Indians and published a...
 
    The Louisiana Purchase
  The Louisiana Purchase
The Louisiana Purchase was the acquisition by the United States of America in 1803 of 828,000 square miles (2,144,000 square kilometers or 529,920,000 acres) of France's claim to the territory of Louisiana. The U.S. paid 50 million francs ($11,250,00...
 
       
 
         
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