Lewis and Clark in Washington
Shrub Steppe Habitat

Dear Students,

The mission of the Lewis and Clark expedition of 1805-1806 was to explore rivers, beginning with the Missouri, in search of the most direct and practical water communication across the continent for commerce. As you probably know, the expedition, also called the Corps of Discovery, passed through our area along the Columbia River.

The Franklin County Historical Society is planning many activities to commemorate the 200th anniversary of the Corps of Discovery. The historical museum wants to develop a "Then and Now" multimedia presentation, a virtual journey through our local shrub steppe habitat. We need your help in gathering information for our Website.

We understand that you have been studying rivers and plan to study and research Lewis & Clark and the Corps of Discovery, and that classes at Canyon View and Southgate Elementary are researching the plants, birds and mammals currently found in our shrub steppe habitat. By working together you can help us develop a student perspective for our Website. We have children as young as second grade who want to "surf the Web" for Lewis and Clark information.

People ask what this area looked like in 1805-1806 and how it has changed since the days of Lewis and Clark. Their questions include:

  • What plants and animals did the men see?
  • Which plants and animals were used for food?
  • What kind of medicine did the men use when they got sick?
  • How did Lewis and Clark map the area?
  • How did the landscape look?
  • What type of weather might they have encountered?
  • Who were the Native Americans that Lewis and Clark met here?

We will add the results of your reseach to the network of Lewis and Clark Websites being created for the bicentennial. Check out these online resources. Some of them will provide information for your research; others may provide opportunities for you to collaborate with other students along the Lewis and Clark route. What resources will you use? Please provide a list of your favorite Websites with a brief description of the site and the grades for which the site is appropriate.

Remember, a virtual trip "through the eyes" of the Corps of Discovery team is our focus. You can read the Corps of Discovery journals. What did they find here? We encourage you to participate in that journey by developing your own Website!

Enjoy the journey,


Jacque Sonderman, Curator

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Author: Gail Wintczak, Amistad Elementary School, Kennewick, WA
Created for the NTEP II Fermilab LInC program sponsored by Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory Education Office and Friends of Fermilab, and funded by United States Department of Energy, Illinois State Board of Education, North Central Regional Technology in Education Consortium which is operated by North Central Regional Educational Laboratory (NCREL), and the National Science Foundation.
Web Maintainer: ed-webmaster@fnal.gov

Created: November 19, 1998 - Updated: October 14,1999
URL: http://www-ed.fnal.gov/ntep/f98/projects/pnnl/amistad/amletter.shtml