Exploring the Legacy of Lewis and Clark at the Museum

Welcome, dear reader, to an exciting and enlightening journey through the history of the legendary explorers – Meriwether Lewis and William Clark. Their expedition to the western frontier territories of the United States in the early 19th century remains a significant landmark in the history of exploration and discovery. Today we will explore this legacy at the museum, where you will have the opportunity to be transported back in time and learn about the fascinating adventures of Lewis and Clark and the impact of their journey on the United States.

Lewis and Clark Museum

The Lewis and Clark Museum is a must-visit attraction for history enthusiasts, and anyone interested in America’s past. This museum is dedicated to celebrating the achievements and adventures of Meriwether Lewis and William Clark, two American explorers who led the Corps of Discovery Expedition from 1804-1806. The museum is located in Great Falls, Montana, and offers a fascinating insight into the story behind one of America’s most iconic journeys.

History of the Expedition

The Lewis and Clark Expedition was commissioned by the President of the United States, Thomas Jefferson, in order to explore the uncharted land west of the Mississippi River. Jefferson wanted to find a waterway that would provide a direct route to the Pacific Ocean, as well as to establish trade with Native American groups in the region. Lewis and Clark were chosen to lead the expedition due to their extensive skills in geography, botany, and animal husbandry.

The team set out in 1804 from St. Louis, Missouri, and over the course of two and a half years, they traveled over 8,000 miles, encountering numerous natural hazards such as treacherous rapids and grizzly bears. They also encountered many Native American tribes, some of whom were friendly, while others were not. Despite the dangers and challenges they faced, the team accomplished their mission, successfully reaching the Pacific Ocean in 1806.

Today, the Lewis and Clark Expedition is considered a remarkable achievement in American history, and one that changed the course of the nation. The Lewis and Clark Museum preserves this legacy and offers visitors a chance to explore this incredible journey in more detail.

The Museum’s Collection

The Lewis and Clark Museum boasts an impressive collection of artifacts and displays related to the expedition. Visitors can view an enormous map of the expedition, which covers the entire wall of one room. Individual exhibits showcase different aspects of the journey, such as the animals the team encountered, the Native American tribes they met, and the tools and equipment they used.

One of the most fascinating displays is a replica of the dug-out canoes that Lewis and Clark used to navigate the rivers. Visitors can also see a selection of plant specimens that were collected during the expedition, which provided vital information about the flora of the region.

Another highlight is the collection of rare books related to Lewis and Clark, including journals written by members of the expedition and works of literature inspired by the journey. These rare books give visitors a unique glimpse into the minds of the explorers and the impact their journey had on American culture.

Museum Events and Activities

The Lewis and Clark Museum hosts a variety of events throughout the year, including tours, lectures, and activities for kids. One popular event is the annual “Salute to the Corps” ceremony, which takes place in August to commemorate the expedition’s arrival in Great Falls.

School groups are welcome to visit the museum, and guided tours can be arranged in advance. These tours offer a great opportunity for students to learn about this significant event in American history and to see firsthand the actual objects used by Lewis and Clark during their journey.

In conclusion, the Lewis and Clark Museum is a fascinating attraction that celebrates the achievements and adventures of two great American explorers. Its impressive collection of artifacts and displays offers visitors a chance to explore the expedition in more detail, while its events and activities provide a fun and educational experience for all ages. If you’re planning a trip to Montana or simply love history, be sure to add the Lewis and Clark Museum to your itinerary.


Location and Hours of Operation

The Lewis and Clark Museum is a must-visit for those interested in the exploration of the American West. Housed in the historic Missouri River Terminal Building in Great Falls, Montana, the museum is dedicated to the Lewis and Clark Expedition of 1804-1806. Visitors can explore the history and impact of this famous expedition through exhibits, artifacts, and interactive displays.

Address and Directions

The Lewis and Clark Museum is located at 420 1st Street South, Great Falls, Montana 59401. From Interstate 15, take the exit for Central Avenue/US-87 N and head west. Turn right onto 1st Street South and continue for several blocks until you reach the museum. There is ample parking available in the surrounding area.

Operating Hours

The Lewis and Clark Museum is open Tuesday through Saturday from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm, and on Sunday from 1:00 pm to 5:00 pm. They are closed on Mondays and major holidays such as Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s Day. Visitors should plan to spend around 1-2 hours exploring the museum.

Admission Fees

The Lewis and Clark Museum charges a nominal admission fee of $5 for adults, $4 for seniors and students, and $2 for children ages 5-12. Military personnel with valid ID are admitted for free. Group rates are available for groups of 10 or more by appointment.

Members of the Friends of the Lewis and Clark Interpretive Association receive free admission to the museum as well as discounts on store purchases and special events. Membership fees start at just $25 per year.

Overall, the Lewis and Clark Museum is an affordable and engaging destination for visitors of all ages. With its prime location, educational exhibits, and friendly staff, it’s a must-visit for anyone interested in the history of the American West.

Visitor Amenities

The Lewis and Clark Museum is an exceptional place to explore the history of the famous American explorers, Meriwether Lewis and William Clark. The museum boasts of a variety of visitor amenities that make the experience worthwhile. These amenities include the museum shop, on-site dining options, and accessibility features.

Museum Shop

The museum shop at the Lewis and Clark Museum is filled with various books and souvenirs related to the history of the American explorers. Visitors can find unique items such as posters, postcards, and other souvenirs that depict the expedition of Lewis and Clark. The shop also features gifts such as key chains, magnets, and hats that would make a perfect addition to any collection. Additionally, there is a plethora of educational books and multimedia products about the twin adventurers. The museum shop is the perfect place to find a special gift for a history-lover, teacher, or student.

Food and Beverages

The museum provides visitors with the option to dine onsite during their visit. The café features an extensive menu of delicious food and beverages. The menu includes coffee, tea, soft drinks, and other refreshing beverages. The café also has pastries and other snacks to help visitors fuel their exploration. Visitors can enjoy their snacks on the outdoor terrace, which offers a scenic view of the Missouri River.


At the Lewis and Clark Museum, everyone is welcomed with open arms. The museum is entirely wheelchair accessible. Visitors with mobility disabilities or who rely on wheelchairs can navigate the museum with ease. Besides, the museum has several reserved parking spots for visitors with disabilities. These parking spots are located close to the main entrance, providing easy access to the museum without having to travel a long distance.


Whether you are a history enthusiast or just a curious tourist, the Lewis and Clark Museum is an excellent place to visit. The museum’s various visitor amenities, such as the museum shop, café, and accessibility features, make for an enjoyable and comfortable experience. So, come and explore the history of Lewis and Clark in one of the most captivating museums in America.

The Importance of the Lewis and Clark Expedition

The Lewis and Clark Expedition of 1804-1806 is one of the most significant events in American history. This expedition, led by Meriwether Lewis and William Clark, was commissioned by President Thomas Jefferson to explore the newly acquired Louisiana Purchase and find a route to the Pacific Ocean. The expedition had various impacts on westward expansion and the relationship with Native American tribes.

Significance in American History

One of the main reasons that President Jefferson commissioned the expedition was to find a route that would connect the Atlantic and Pacific oceans. The expedition successfully explored and mapped out the unknown territories of the west, which aided in the westward expansion of the United States. The Lewis and Clark expedition was able to establish the United States’ claim to the Pacific Northwest, which was later useful during negotiations with Great Britain.

Moreover, the expedition had significant benefits on relations with Native American tribes. The explorers successfully negotiated with the Native American tribes they encountered, facilitating better communication and friendship between the tribes and white settlers. Their interactions were often peaceful, which aided in the settling of the West.

Legacy of Lewis and Clark

The expedition’s legacy extends far beyond its impact on westward expansion and relations with Native American tribes. Lewis and Clark’s journey has been romanticized in American popular culture, inspiring books, movies, and art. They are considered some of the most famous explorers in history.

Additionally, Lewis and Clark had a significant impact on scientific discovery and exploration. The expedition discovered new plant and animal species, and their observations paved the way for later scientific expeditions in the West. They also established meteorological data that contributed significantly to the scientific community’s understanding of the weather patterns in the region.

The Museum’s Role in Preserving History

The Lewis and Clark Museum is dedicated to preserving the history and legacy of the expedition for future generations. The museum offers several interactive exhibits that allow visitors to learn about the route the expedition took, the people they met, and their scientific discoveries.

The museum also features an impressive collection of artifacts related to the expedition. Visitors can see first-hand several objects used by the expedition, such as maps, navigational tools, and weapons. Moreover, the museum includes authentic Native American artifacts and exhibits on modern-day Native American culture.

In conclusion, the Lewis and Clark Expedition was not just an exploratory journey; it had a profound impact on the course of American history. The expedition established the U.S.’s claim to the Pacific Northwest, enhanced relations with Native Americans, and contributed significantly to scientific discovery and exploration. The Lewis and Clark Museum plays an essential role in preserving this history for future generations to learn about and appreciate.

Volunteer and Donation Opportunities

If you’re a history buff or just interested in helping out a good cause, there are plenty of ways to get involved with the Lewis and Clark Museum in Kansas City. From volunteering your time to making a financial contribution, here’s what you need to know about supporting this important cultural center.

Volunteering at the Museum

The Lewis and Clark Museum relies on volunteers to help keep operations running smoothly. If you’re interested in becoming a docent, you can contact the museum directly to learn more about their current needs and requirements. The role of a docent is to guide visitors through the museum, provide information about the exhibits, and answer any questions that may arise.

If you’re not interested in becoming a docent but still want to help out, there are plenty of other opportunities to get involved. You can help with special events, assist with administrative tasks, or even lend your expertise as a consultant on historical matters. Whatever your skills and interests may be, there’s sure to be a way for you to contribute to this important cultural institution.

Donating to the Museum

If you’re unable to volunteer your time but still want to support the museum’s ongoing preservation efforts, making a financial contribution is a great way to do so. The Lewis and Clark Museum is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, which means that your donation may be tax-deductible.

Donations can be made online through the museum’s website, or you can mail a check directly to their offices. Whether you choose to make a one-time gift or set up a recurring donation, your contribution will go towards supporting the museum’s educational programs, artifact maintenance and preservation, and other important initiatives.

Corporate Sponsorship Opportunities

Businesses looking to support the Lewis and Clark Museum can do so through a variety of corporate sponsorship opportunities. This can include sponsoring a particular exhibit, supporting a special event, or contributing to the museum’s general operations fund.

Sponsorship opportunities are tailored to meet the specific needs and interests of each business, with benefits including recognition on the museum’s website, social media channels, and marketing materials. Corporate sponsors also have the opportunity to host private events at the museum, providing a unique and memorable experience for clients, employees, and stakeholders.

If you’re interested in learning more about corporate sponsorship opportunities at the Lewis and Clark Museum, reach out to the museum’s development team to discuss the possibilities.

By volunteering your time, making a financial contribution, or sponsoring the museum’s operations, you’ll be helping to ensure that the legacy of Lewis and Clark remains alive and accessible for generations to come. Your support is greatly appreciated and will help to preserve an important part of American history.

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