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The Brief American Pageant , Sixth Edition
David M. Kennedy, Stanford University
Lizabeth Cohen, Harvard University
Thomas A. Bailey
Mel Piehl, Valparaiso University
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Introduction | Questions to Consider | Source | Related Links

Lewis and Clark: A Modern View
John Klossner

Instructors' Note
You may have to remind students that Lewis and Clark had markedly different personalities. Lewis was the scientist, prone to introspection and sometimes even depression. Clark possessed a more even temperament and carried out the practical aspects of the expedition. He, for example, was responsible for drawing the maps. There were other members of the Corps of Discovery, including York, Clark's slave; a Native American woman, Sacajawea; and Franco-Americans, the best known of whom was probably Drouillard, the consummate woodsman. A discussion speculating on the other members' perspectives might be helpful. You may want to impart a little background if the students are unfamiliar with the expedition. If that is not possible, the "Lewis and Clark: A Scientific Interest in the Native American Population (1805)" selection provides enough insight into Lewis for the assignment to focus solely on him. Unlike other writing exercises, this assignment is less analytic and provides an opportunity for a different kind of writing.

Both Lewis and Clark wrote their journals intending that they would some day be published and available to the public at large. But what if they kept secret journals, recording more personal observations, complaints, or interpretations of what they saw?

Questions to Consider
  1. To what aspect of the Lewis and Clark expedition might the cartoon be referring?

  2. Using the "Lewis and Clark: A Scientific Interest in the Native American Population (1805)" activity as a model, write a "secret" journal entry from the point of view of Lewis, Clark, or another member of the expedition party.



Source: (c)1998 John Klossner


Related Links

  • Lewis & Clark
    This PBS site contains a rich selection of text materials and images that accompanied airing of the series entitled Lewis & Clark.