Lewis & Clark Bicentennial Commemoration
As Jill and I were walking down Main Street, I happened to notice what looked like a headstone. It was a marking of that spot as the RENDEZVOUS SITE (May16-21, 1804) of the Lewis and Clark Expedition.
In short, it tells of President Thomas Jefferson's message to Meriwether Lewis about the object of his expedition. It also quotes a passage from William Clark's Journal when they arrived in Saint Charles from St. Louis.
"we arrived at St. Charles at 12 oClock a number Spectators french & Indians flocked to the bank to See the party. This Village is about one mile in length, Situated on the North Side of the Missourie at the foot of a hill from which it takes its name Petiete Coete or the Little hill. This village Contns. about 100 houses, the most of them Small and indefferent and about 450 inhabitents Chieffly French, those people appear pore, polite & harmonious.." 16 May 1804
"...Set out at half passed three oClock under three Cheers from the gentlmen on the bank..." 21 May 1804
Note that the quoted material is copied just as William Clark wrote it in his journal, mistakes and all. Having just visited St. Louis, we were quite aware of the significance of the bicentennial celebration of the Lewis and Clark Expedition, and now our attention was focused on Saint Charles' role in that famous event in American history.
This year on May 15th, a replica keelboat from that famed expedition will arrive at Saint Charles to start a week of events to "mimic" the one 200 years ago. They will have period foods, crafts, and music of the time. there will be demonstrations and encampments as well. This reenactment will conclude on May 23, 2004, as the keelboat will depart from Saint Charles to begin their travel adventure just as Lewis and Clark did 200 years ago.
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