Your Life as a Private on the Lewis and Clark Expedition (The Way It Was)
The two-volume journals were presented to the public in , ten years after the corps began its epic journey; their publication caused little stir.
Clark biographer Landon Y. Jones notes: "For 30 years after the expedition, William Clark ranked as the leading federal official in the West, the point man for six Presidents, from Jefferson to Van Buren, who trusted him with protecting American interests on territory bitterly contested by both Britain and Spain.
Clark died at age 68, in , in the St. Louis home of his firstborn son, Meriwether Lewis Clark. Sacagawea Seven years after her reunion with the Shoshone, Sacagawea and her husband turned up at Fort Manuel, a trading post near present-day Bismark, North Dakota, where Toussaint had found work as an interpreter with the Missouri Fur Company. Journalist Henry Brackenridge wrote that Sacagawea was ill "and longed to revisit her native country.
On December 20, , John Luttig, the fort's chief clerk, wrote in his logbook that Sacagawea "died of a putrid fever she was a good and the best Women in the fort. She left behind two biological children: 7-year-old Jean Baptiste and 4-month-old Lisette.
Lewis and Clark depart to explore the Northwest
The following year Luttig, possibly representing William Clark for whom he had worked , petitioned the Orphans' Court in St. Louis for guardianship of Jean Baptiste and Lisette. By then, Toussaint was presumed dead, having not been seen for six months. Luttig's name was eventually crossed out on the petition and replaced with that of Clark, who, at the very least, paid for Baptiste's education. Baptiste later traveled to Europe, where he remained for six years.
Lisette's fate, and that of Sacagawea's nephew, is unknown. Jean Baptiste Over the course of the expedition, William Clark grew very fond of Sacagawea's baby, became his guardian and later financed his education at a St. Louis boarding school. The known facts of Baptiste's life are few. In , Duke Paul Wilhelm Friedrich Herzog of Wurttemberg, Germany, visited a trading post in present-day Kansas City, where he met the then year-old man, who was working as a guide and interpreter.
The two traveled to Europe, where Baptiste remained for six years. He fathered a child with a German woman, but the baby, a boy, died after three months, and Baptiste returned to the United States. In , he joined gold prospectors headed for the Montana Territory.
Lewis and Clark Expedition
On the way, he developed pneumonia and died shortly thereafter, at age 61, in Oregon near the Idaho border, having outlived all of the members of the expedition except Sgt. Patrick Gass. York After the expedition ended, Clark traveled in to St. Louis to take up duties as chief Indian agent for the Territory of Upper Louisiana, bringing York with him.
Lewis and Clark: The Journey Ends | History | Smithsonian
A rift developed between the two men: York had wanted to remain in Kentucky, near his wife, whom he hadn't seen in almost five years. He also petitioned Clark for his freedom—perhaps thinking of the double pay and acres the other men received for their services on the expedition. These requests struck Clark as presumptuous coming from a slave. Clark eventually allowed York to return to Kentucky in for a short visit.
But Clark wrote to his brother Jonathan: "If any attempt is made by york to run off, or refuse to provorm his duty as a Slave, I wish him Sent to New Orleans and Sold, or hired out to Some Severe master untill he thinks better of Such Conduct. In a letter now in the Jonathan Clark Papers—Temple Bodley Collection at the Filson Historical Society in Louisville to his brother dated a few months later, Clark wrote: "I did wish to do well by him—but as he has got Such a notion about freedom and his emence Services, that I do not expect he will be of much Service to me again; I do not think with him, that his Services has been So great or my Situation would promit me to liberate him.
York returned to St. Louis in early , but Clark still viewed him unfavorably. The last mention of York in William Clark's letters appears in August ; Clark was so displeased with him that he determined to hire him out or sell him.
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Young yesterday expired but I believe agreable to request Mr. Fitzhugh has again hired him to a Mr. Mitchell living about seven miles from this place I apprehend that he has been indifferently clothed if at all by Young Ten years after the expedition's end, York was still enslaved, working as a wagoner for the Clark family. In , writer Washington Irving interviewed Clark and asked of York's fate.
Clark replied that he had finally freed York and said, astonishingly, that his former slave wasn't happy with his freedom and tried to return to Clark—dying of cholera along the way. But did he? In , fur trader Zenas Leonard, visiting a Crow village in north-central Wyoming, "found a Negro man, who informed us that he first came to this country with Lewis and Clark—with whom he also returned to the state of Missouri, and in a few years returned again with a Mr. Mackinney, a trader on the Missouri river, and has remained here ever since—which is about ten or twelve years.
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SmartNews History. History Archaeology. World History. Science Age of Humans. Future of Space Exploration. Human Behavior. Our Planet. Earth Optimism Summit. Ingenuity Ingenuity Festival. The Innovative Spirit. Featured: St. Imagine setting off to sail crystal-clear rivers all the way to the Pacific Ocean. Going bird-watching. Sleeping beneath the stars. But be careful what you wish for. That might not be the way it was for a private on the Lewis and Clark expedition. Read more Read less. Product description Product Description You just tried out for the school play.
Jessica Gunderson grew up in the small town of Washburn, North Dakota. She has written more than fifty books for young readers. Her book Ropes of Revolution won the Moonbeam Award for best graphic novel. She currently lives in Madison, Wisconsin, with her husband and cat.
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