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Undaunted Courage: Meriwether Lewis, Thomas Jefferson, and the Opening of the American West

Ambrose, Stephen E.

39,876 ratings by Goodreads
ISBN 10: 0684811073 / ISBN 13: 9780684811079
Published by Simon & Schuster: New York, NY. First edition, first printing., 1996
Condition: VG/VG Hardcover
From Tsunami Books (Eugene, OR, U.S.A.)

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About this Item

ISBN: 0684811073 Hardcover, paper over boards with brown cloth backstrip, gilt lettering on spine, 511 pages. Clean and square copy, text unmarked. Remainder mark to bottom edge. Dust jacket protected in new mylar wrap. 0.0 0.0 0.0. Bookseller Inventory # 12122

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Undaunted Courage: Meriwether Lewis, Thomas ...

Publisher: Simon & Schuster: New York, NY. First edition, first printing.

Publication Date: 1996

Binding: Hardcover

Book Condition:VG/VG

Dust Jacket Condition: Dust Jacket Included

Edition: 1st Edition

About this title

Synopsis:

From the bestselling author of Band of Brothers and D-Day, the definitive book on Lewis and Clark’s exploration of the Louisiana Purchase, the most momentous expedition in American history and one of the great adventure stories of all time.

In 1803 President Thomas Jefferson selected his personal secretary, Captain Meriwether Lewis, to lead a voyage up the Missouri River to the Rockies, over the mountains, down the Columbia River to the Pacific Ocean, and back. Lewis and his partner, Captain William Clark, made the first map of the trans-Mississippi West, provided invaluable scientific data on the flora and fauna of the Louisiana Purchase territory, and established the American claim to Oregon, Washington, and Idaho.

Ambrose has pieced together previously unknown information about weather, terrain, and medical knowledge at the time to provide a vivid backdrop for the expedition. Lewis is supported by a rich variety of colorful characters, first of all Jefferson himself, whose interest in exploring and acquiring the American West went back thirty years. Next comes Clark, a rugged frontiersman whose love for Lewis matched Jefferson’s. There are numerous Indian chiefs, and Sacagawea, the Indian girl who accompanied the expedition, along with the French-Indian hunter Drouillard, the great naturalists of Philadelphia, the French and Spanish fur traders of St. Louis, John Quincy Adams, and many more leading political, scientific, and military figures of the turn of the century.

High adventure, high politics, suspense, drama, and diplomacy combine with high romance and personal tragedy to make this outstanding work of scholarship as readable as a novel.

Review:

A biography of Meriwether Lewis that relies heavily on the journals of both Lewis and Clark, this book is also backed up by the author's personal travels along Lewis and Clark's route to the Pacific. Ambrose is not content to simply chronicle the events of the "Corps of Discovery" as the explorers called their ventures. He often pauses to assess the military leadership of Lewis and Clark, how they negotiated with various native peoples and what they reported to Jefferson. Though the expedition failed to find Jefferson's hoped for water route to the Pacific, it fired interest among fur traders and other Americans, changing the face of the West forever.

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