Climate Then and Now
President Thomas Jefferson gave instructions to Meriwether Lewis and William Clark regarding most facets of the 1804 expedition into and across the North American continent. Of particular mention is his instruction for them to record,
What environmental conditions did Lewis and Clark expect to find along the Missouri River of the Great Plains and beyond? Were they expecting a tropical climate? A desert? A paradise of temperate weather, fertile ground and navigable waterways? Did they expect mighty snowpacks and torrential rain?
To find out more, read our brochure available for download entitled, "Experiencing Climate."
Did You Know?
Jefferson expected the Expedition to learn about the people, plants and animals of the newly acquired Louisiana Purchase. None of the men of the Expedition was a trained scientist, but fulfilling Jefferson’s instructions required skills in cartography, ethnography, botany, zoology, and meteorology.