See also:American explorer, was
See also:born near
See also:Charlottesville, Virginia, on the 18th of
See also:August 1774 . In 1794 he volunteered with the Virginia troops called out to suppress the "
See also:Whisky Insurrection," was commissioned as ensign in the
See also:United States army in 1795, served with distinction under General Anthony
See also:Wayne in the
See also:campaigns against the
See also:Indians, and attained the
See also:rank of captain in 1797 . From 18o1 to 1803 he was the private secretary of
See also:President Jefferson . On the 18th of
See also:January 1803 Jefferson sent aconfidential
See also:message to Congress urging the development of
See also:trade with the Indians of the
See also:Missouri Valley and recommending that an exploring party be sent into this region, notwithstanding the fact that it was then held by Spain and owned by France . Congress appropriated funds for the expedition, and the president instructed
See also:Lewis to proceed to the
See also:waters of the Missouri
See also:river and thence across the mountains to the Pacific Ocean . With Jefferson's consent Lewis
See also:chose .as a
See also:companion Lieut .
See also:Clark, an old friend and army comrade . The preparations were made under the orders of the War Department, and, until the
See also:news arrived that France had sold
See also:Louisiana to the United States, they were conducted in secrecy . Lewis spent some
See also:time in
See also:Philadelphia, gaining additional knowledge of the natural sciences and learning the use of
See also:instruments for deter-
See also:mining positions; and
See also:late in 1803 he and Clark, with twenty-nine men from the army, went into winter quarters near St
See also:Louis, where the men were subjected to rigid training . On the 14th of May 1804 the party, with sixteen additional members, who, however, were to go only a
See also:part of the way, started up the Missouri river in three boats, and by the 2nd of
See also:November had made the difficult ascent of the stream as far as 470 21' N.
See also:lat., near the site of the
See also:present Bismarck,
See also:North Dakota, where, among the
See also:Mandan Indians, they passed the second winter . Early in
See also:April r8os the ascent of the Missouri was continued as far as the three forks of the river, which were named the Jefferson, the
See also:Gallatin and the Madison . The Jefferson was then followed to its source in the south-western part of what is now the state of
See also:Montana .
See also:guide and horses from the Shoshone Indians, the party pushed westward through the Rocky Mountains in
See also:September, and on the 7th of
See also:October embarked in canoes on a tributary of the
See also:Columbia river, the mouth of which they reached on the 15th of November . They had travelled upwards of 4000 M. from their starting-point, had encountered various
See also:Indian tribes never before seen by whites, had made valuable scientific collections and observations, and were the first explorers to reach the Pacific by
See also:crossing the continent north of Mexico . After spending the winter on the Pacific
See also:coast they started on the 23rd of
See also:March 18o6 on their return
See also:journey, and, after crossing the
See also:divide, Lewis with one party explored Maria's river, and Clark with another the Yellowstone . On the 12th of August the two explorers reunited near the junction of the Yellowstone and the Missouri, and on the 23rd of September reached St Louis . In spite of exposure, hardship and peril only one member of the party died, and only one deserted . No later feat of exploration, perhaps, in any quarter of the globe has exceeded this in romantic
See also:interest . The expedition was commemorated by the Lewis and Clark Centennial Exposition at
See also:Oregon, in 1905 . The leaders and men of the exploring party were rewarded with liberal grants of
See also:land from the public domain, Lewis receiving 1500 acres; and in March 1807 Lewis was made
See also:governor of the
See also:northern part of the territory obtained from France in 1803, which had been organized as the Louisiana Territory . He performed the duties of this
See also:office with
See also:great efficiency, but it is said that in the unwonted quiet of his new duties, his mind, always subject to melancholy, became unbalanced, and that while on his way to
See also:Washington he committed suicide about 6o m. south-west of
See also:Tennessee, on the rlth of October 1809 . It is not definitely known, however, whether he actually committed suicide or was murdered .
MATTHEW GREGORY LEWIS (1775-1818)
BART SIR GEORGE CORNEWALL LEWIS
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