Lewis & Clark at the Falls of the Ohio
What are we talking about?
In April 2001 the National Council of the Lewis and Clark Bicentennial
designated the Falls of the Ohio,
including the southern Indiana community of Clarksville, as a site for one
of a dozen “National Signature Events” to be conducted during the 2003—2006
bicentennial commemoration. The Falls of the Ohio event will be conducted
from October 13 to 26, 2003, the period which marks the 200th anniversary of
Meriwether Lewis’s arrival at the Falls of the Ohio and the departure of the
Corps of Discovery on the expedition that would take them to the Pacific
Ocean and back.
Who was William Clark?
William Clark, a native of Virginia and younger brother of General George
Rogers Clark, was the co-captain of the Lewis and Clark Expedition. He was
living in Clarksville with his brother George during the months before Lewis
arrived at the Falls. William also served on the Clarksville Board of
Trustees, of which George was chairman, and as town surveyor. William Clark
had been Meriwether Lewis’s superior officer in the Army during the 1790’s
when they served under the command of General Anthony Wayne.
Why is the Falls of the Ohio significant?
William Clark was living at the Falls of the Ohio when Lewis invited him to
serve as co-captain of the expedition. It was here that Clark recruited
seven members of the expedition and where Lewis and Clark met. After their
meeting, Clarksville became their base of operations. It is where they swore
in and trained the nucleus of the Corps of Discovery and appointed the
noncommissioned officers, including Sgt. Charles Floyd, a former Clarksville
constable who would be the only member to die on the expedition. The party
departed from Clarksville on October 26, 1803. It consisted of twelve
members, including the two captains, seven men recruited locally by William
Clark, two who joined Lewis along the way from Pittsburgh, and York, Clark’s
slave. The expedition returned to the Falls on November 5, 1806.
What Is The Corps of Discovery II?
"Corps of Discovery II" is perhaps the most creative project in the Park
Service's history. Starting in 2003, 10 to 15 Park Service interpreters set out on three buses to follow the route of the original Corps of
Discovery. The trip followed Lewis and Clark's journey day-by-day, taking
three and a half years. During the winter months, when the two explorers
stayed in one place for the entire season, the Park Service interpreters
took the traveling exhibit to areas off the original trail, including
southern states like Florida and Texas. More info...
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