Most of Louisiana was occupied by Native Americans.
The meaning of Louisiana in French is "red stick."
In the early 1800’s Thomas Jefferson became President of the United States of America and dreamed of controlling the port of New Orleans. This city was in Louisiana. At that time, France had owned Louisiana. The port of New Orleans was at the mouth of Mississippi River. It is an important port city because farmers could send their crops down the Mississippi River into New Orleans (The crops were later sent to cities in the East). Then Jefferson decided to buy the Louisiana Purchase from France.
The president first offered $10 million however the French would not accept it. Finally, the French sold the territory for $15 million because they needed the money to fight a war with Great Britain. Napoleon, the French leader also thought that it was worthless since nobody had discovered the land, so Jefferson could have it, when Jefferson first bought the land, he didn’t know anything about it. For instance, like how big it was. Jefferson sent two explorers to Louisiana.
The explorer’s names were Meriweather Lewis and William Clark. They led a troop of 40 men, who already explored the area. While they were in Louisiana they made accurate maps of the area and they discovered new plants and animals. On their journey they met a Native American Shoshone who helped them on their quest.
The Indians name was Sacajawea. She guided them through the Rocky Mountains. On the expedition she gave birth to a baby boy. (Lewis and Clark helped deliver the baby.) Later, Clark wrote in his diary saying that without Sacajawea's help they wouldn’t be able to continue their journey through the Rocky Mountains. When the explorers came back from Louisiana they didn’t come back empty handed, they had tons of information about the land, they brought back the accurate maps they had made, and they brought back some of the animals that lived in that “state.”
Know this is how we all got to know the history of the Louisiana Purchase and the people who we met along the way. This article will give you as much information about the Louisiana Purchase. So as you can see, the United States of America now stretches from sea to shining sea, from the Pacific to the Atlantic Oceans.
Copyright © 2007, Terry Hongell - Pocantico Hills School All rights reserved