William Clark: Master of Exploration
Thomas Jefferson rejected the Washington-Adams model of a federal government coupled with increasing industry, banking, and infrastructure to hold the new United States together. Jefferson favored farming, on family land, a simple life, and sending Americans all the way to the Pacific. To this end he negotiated the purchase of the Louisiana territory from France, and send U.S. Army captains Merriwether Lewis and William Clark up the Missouri to find a waterway to the Pacific. The two men were very different.
William Clark - the subject of this book - had an Ohio background of farming and the Army. His education was basic. He was a stickler on the day-to-day management of an Army contingent, what they wore, the work they performed, how they behaved, and how to punish the slackers.
The band reached the Pacific and returned, mapping, measuring, reporting, and trading throughout the round trip. Both were injured and sick repeatedly, often lost, usually hungry to the point of starvation, wet, cold, and sometimes frightened. Each one took charge of the entire expedition while the other one was on detached duty, lost, or ill. Their journal entries during these periods particularly highlight their differences in character and intention.
This is the first of two miniature books, a volume for each man. Each book draws out the character of one of the men, and the ways he responded to the journey in categories that show the many differences between them - one of the reasons for their success.
The book consists of 280 pages, bound in printed cloth. The overall dimensions are 76 x 76 x 16 mm (3 x 3 x 5/8 inches). It is an open edition, price $45 with free shipping and handling.