SOME PEOPLE ARE BORN WITH an unquenchable thirst to explore new worlds and discover unknown treasures. Others find an opportunity to become pioneers of new territory at the behest of men with a belief that there is something worth discovering across the distance. Lewis and Clark must have had a bit of both. Commissioned and funded by Thomas Jefferson, the acting president of the United States, and the American Philosophical Society, the two men set out to explore and study wildlife, geography, Native American culture, and economic potential. Their mission was to return with artifacts, maps of trade routes and channels of commerce to Asia (the Northwest Passage), as well as tools and stories of life beyond the horizon.
The focus of the expedition was not just the discovery of plants, animals, and resources; more importantly, Jefferson wanted to chart out a convenient economic passageway through the interior to the Pacific that would open up potential for future growth. Lewis and Clark took a calculated, scientific approach to their journey. They carefully documented and recorded new plants and animals, forged relationships with Native Americans, and created a road map for future commerce. Today we respect Lewis and Clark for their persistence, patience, and courage for moving forward. Pioneers, as well as inventors and innovators, are remembered for challenging conventions and boundaries and shaping a new landscape for the future.
You may believe that today there is ...