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Presentation on theme: "COLORADO HISTORY AMERICAN EXPLORERS."— Presentation transcript:


2 AMERICAN EXPLORERS Napoleon sold Louisiana Purchase to Thomas Jefferson in 1803 To learn more, Jefferson sent Capt. Meriwether Lewis and Lt. William Clark to explore the Northern part of the Louisiana Territory They were the first Americans to explore this territory They never explored Colorado



5 ZEBULON PIKE In 1806, Lt. Zebulon Pike set out to investigate southwestern Louisiana Began looking for the mouth of the Arkansas River & the Red River (thought to be the boundary between Louisiana and Mexico) Came across the large mountain that was later named for him He failed to climb Pike’s Peak – attempted, but never made it to top

6 PIKE Traveled from St. Louis to the Arkansas River to the San Luis Valley, up and down the front range near Colorado Springs, then to South Park He became lost and confused, eventually left CO and wandered into Spanish territory where he was captured by Spanish forces He was sent to Santa Fe and then to Chihuahua for questioning as a spy (550 miles away) Later returned to the US, rose to the rank of general and was killed in the War of 1812

7 PIKE Considered a SUCCESS Considered a FAILURE
Produced the first detailed report and maps of eastern Colorado Valuable records of geography and natural resources He published his records- “The Arkansaw Journal” His journals were popular in both the US and Europe First American (in England) to describe Pike’s Peak, the Royal Gorge, South Park, the San Luis Valley and the Sangre de Christo mountain range Considered a FAILURE Failed to find the source of the Red River Got lost and confused Allowed himself to be captured Never climbed Pike’s Peak Party suffered many hardships Earned the nickname “The Lost Pathfinder”


9 Pike’s Peak

10 STEPHEN H. LONG War of 1812 halted exploration for sometime
In 1820, he was sent out to explore the west Second American to lead an expedition to Colorado Major in US army, math instructor at West Point Follows foothills and rivers-enter on the Platte, south to Denver, Colorado Springs and Pueblo and followed the Arkansas out of the state 19 men were on this expedition including a mapmaker, landscape painter, zoologist, physician, botanist and geologist

11 LONG Even though he provided good geographical evidence, the journey was remembered for inconsequential reasons: Companion Edwin James climbed Pike’s Peak and collected the Blue Columbine-Long called this James’ Peak Spotted Two-Ears Peak (Long’s Peak) Wrote “Great American Desert” across his map- halted settlement in this area for a long time (He later became a RR engineer and invented a new type of RR bridge)


13 Longs Peak

14 Other American Explorers
Colonel Henry Dodge Colonel Stephen Kearney John C. Fremont Captain John W. Gunnison


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