By Maurice Isserman, John S. Bowman
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Extra info for Across America: The Lewis and Clark Expedition (Discovery and Exploration)
But fall was coming on, and he still had 1,100 miles to travel by river just to reach the mouth of the Missouri. Finally, on August 31, Lewis and his crew of 10 or possibly 11 men (the seven soldiers, two or This sketch, made by Clark, illustrates the 55-foot-long keelboat designed by Lewis and modified by Clark. (Yale Collection of Western Americana, Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library) Preparing the Way possibly three new recruits, and a pilot who was to help them navigate the Falls of the Ohio) set off down the Ohio River.
Government for the ceremony that saw the Louisiana Territory handed over, first from Spain to France, and then from France to the United States. They were no longer on foreign soil when they stood on the west bank of the Mississippi. That was certainly good news. So was the arrival of spring shortly thereafter. By March 20 frogs could be heard croaking, by March 26 Clark was recording the weather as “worm and fair,” by April 1 the spicewood was in bloom, followed soon after by apple and peach trees, and by the noisy passage of flocks of waterfowl flying northward.
Nor would it be surprising if, sometime soon after Lewis’s arrival in Washington, their conversation turned to the subject of their shared dream of finding the Northwest Passage, though there is no record of just when that topic first arose. Sometime during those two years they spent in each other’s company, most likely in summer or fall 1802, Thomas Jefferson decided that Meriwether Lewis was the man for whom he had long searched to lead an American expedition up the Missouri. Jefferson regretted that the young army officer was not trained as a scientist.
Across America: The Lewis and Clark Expedition (Discovery and Exploration) by Maurice Isserman, John S. Bowman