• Looking up at the Gateway Arch

    Jefferson

    National Expansion Memorial Missouri

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  • Pedestrian Access to the Gateway Arch From Downtown

    Pedestrian traffic on the Chestnut bridge will be closed as of today Monday, March 31, 2014. This will leave the Pine St. bridge as the Arch grounds point of entry to and from the city. The new Walnut St. bridge will open next Friday to foot traffic.

Explorers

The first of many explorers of the uncharted regions of the newly acquired Louisiana Territory were Meriwether Lewis and William Clark. They were followed by other government sponsored expeditions led by pathfinders Pike, Long, and Frémont, among others. These men established important new routes for many who followed.

President Thomas Jefferson commissioned army officers Meriwether Lewis and William Clark to explore the Louisiana Territory, investigate potential resources, establish trade with the Indians and most importantly discover a passage to the Pacific Ocean through the Northwest. In 1803 President Jefferson presented Captain Lewis with a list of written instructions, saying that, "The object of your mission is to explore the Missouri River, and such principal streams of it which may offer the most direct and practicable water communication across the continent for the purposes of commerce..."

 

Did You Know?

1843 letter

The Museum of Westward Expansion at the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial contains over 150 quotes from diaries, journals, letters and speeches. The designers of the museum felt the actual words of nineteenth century pioneers were the most powerful way to tell their story. Click to learn more. More...