Lewis and Clark: The National

Cartography Lewis and Clark

The sixteenth of January 1805 was not the kind of day Lewis and Clark would have chosen for calm deliberation and the thoughtful exchange of cartographic information. On that cold Dakota day, Fort Mandan was the scene of angry words and hostile gestures as Mandans and Hidatsas traded jeers and insults. While Lewis and Clark watched helplessly, Hidatsa warriors from the village of Menetarra charged Mandans with spreading malicious rumors designed to breed fear and keep Hidatsas away from the expedition. As the tough talk flew higher, the expedition's hopes for diplomacy sank. But in the midst of the bitterness and harangue a remarkable event took place-something both important for the immediate needs of the expedition and symbolic of one of the most valuable relations between native people and the explorers. Among the Hidatsas at Fort Mandan was a young war chief intent on mounting a horse-stealing raid against the Shoshonis. Most of what passed between the eager warrior and the edgy explorers centered on an attempt to dissuade him from the proposed raid. Almost as an afterthought, William Clark noted that "this War Chief gave us a Chart in his Way of the Missourie."

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Piri Reis map

by Toolooselatreak

The Piri Reis map dated 1513 and it is the first surviving map that shows the Americas. The Piri Reis map shows the western coast of Africa, the eastern coast of South America, and the northern coast of Antarctica. The northern coastline of Antarctica is perfectly detailed. The most puzzling however is not so much how Piri Reis managed to draw such an accurate map of the Antarctic region 300 years before it was discovered, but that the map shows the coastline under the ice.
The Piri Reis map was made by a Turkish Admiral Piri Ibn Haji Mehmed. Reis means admiral. His passion was cartography

Howell Pr Lewis and Clark: The Maps of Exploration, 1507-1814
Book (Howell Pr)
  • Used Book in Good Condition
Farpoint Films Uncharted Surveyor - The Peter Fidler Story
DVD (Farpoint Films)

Popular Q&A

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Who led Lewis and clark?

Sacajawea

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