William Clark (1770–1838) was the frontiersman and explorer who, with Meriwether Lewis, led the Lewis and Clark Expedition in the Louisiana Territory and Pacific Northwest in 1804–1806. Born in Virginia, Clark joined the militia on the Ohio frontier in 1789 and was commissioned as a lieutenant of infantry in the Army in 1792. Under General Anthony Wayne, Clark took part in the Battle of Fallen Timbers in 1794. He left the military in 1796 and in 1803 was invited by Meriwether Lewis to join him in leading an expedition through the Louisiana Territory. Lewis and Clark’s Corps of Discovery departed from St. Louis on May 14, 1804, and spent fifty-two months exploring and documenting the lands, wildlife, and people of the West. After their return to St. Louis in September 1806, Clark became brigadier general of the militia for the Louisiana Territory. He later served as the territorial governor of Missouri and superintendent of Indian affairs, negotiating Indian removal and acquiring Indian lands for the United States.

Make Gilder Lehrman your Home for History

Already have an account?

Please click here to login and access this page.

How to subscribe

Click here to get a free subscription if you are a K-12 educator or student, and here for more information on the Affiliate School Program, which provides even more benefits.

Otherwise, click here for information on a paid subscription for those who are not K-12 educators or students.

Make Gilder Lehrman your Home for History

Become an Affiliate School to have free access to the Gilder Lehrman site and all its features.

Click here to start your Affiliate School application today! You will have free access while your application is being processed.

Individual K-12 educators and students can also get a free subscription to the site by making a site account with a school-affiliated email address. Click here to do so now!

Make Gilder Lehrman your Home for History

Why Gilder Lehrman?

Your subscription grants you access to archives of rare historical documents, lectures by top historians, and a wealth of original historical material, while also helping to support history education in schools nationwide. Click here to see the kinds of historical resources to which you'll have access and here to read more about the Institute's educational programs.

Individual subscription: $25

Click here to sign up for an individual subscription to the Gilder Lehrman site.

Make Gilder Lehrman your Home for History

Upgrade your Account

We're sorry, but it looks as though you do not have access to the full Gilder Lehrman site.

All K-12 educators receive free subscriptions to the Gilder Lehrman site, and our Affiliate School members gain even more benefits!

How to Subscribe

K-12 educator or student? Click here to edit your profile and indicate this, giving you free access, and here for more information on the Affiliate School Program.

Not a educator or student? Click here for more information on purchasing a subscription to the Gilder Lehrman site.

Related Site Content