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Meriwether Lewis, of the Lewis and Clark Expedition, met his death while traveling on the Natchez Trace. Then governor of the Louisiana Territory, he was on his way to Washington, DC from his base in St. Louis, Missouri. Lewis stopped at Grinder's Stand near current-day Hohenwald, Tennessee for overnight shelter in October 1809. He appeared to be distraught , and was believed to have committed suicide by gun. He was buried near the inn. His mother believed he had been murdered, and rumors circulated about possible killers. Thomas Jefferson and Lewis' former partner William Clark accepted the report of suicide.
In 1848, a Tennessee state commission erected a monument over his gravesite. On the bicentennial of Lewis' death in 2009, the first national public memorial service honoring his life was held, as the last event of the Lewis and Clark Expedition Bicentennial. Today, Grinder's Stand and the nearby city of Hohenwald are within the boundaries of Lewis County, named in honor of Meriwether Lewis.
Gravesite is at milepost 385.9 of the Natchez Trace Parkway.
Written Aug 1, 2011