Steven Raab Addresses the Lewis and Clark Trail Heritage Foundation

In 1803, President Thomas Jefferson notified Congress of his intent to send a mission west to explore the unknown portions of the American continent.  He chose a man who he knew to be acquainted with the West, Meriwether Lewis.  But Lewis was not a new presence in Jefferson's world. In fact, he had been his Secretary for 2 years.  Few know that when Jefferson listed Lewis's qualifications for this earlier position, he also used Lewis's knowledge of the West. 

Lewis performed duties for Jefferson from 1801 through 1803 as Jefferson's primary aide.  But what did he do?  What manuscripts survive?  This was the subject of Steven Raab's speech for the National Chapter of the Lewis and Clark Trail Heritage Foundation.  He discussed Lewis's role in the White House and also other historical documents discovered by The Raab Collection, including a letter of Abraham Lincoln from 1849 discussing the functioning of a democracy.

The Raab Collection also brought a small exhibit to show attendees.  The exhibit featured a document in the hand of Meriwether Lewis and a letter signed by Thomas Jefferson in late 1802.

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