Historic marker placed at Lewis & Clark launch site
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Sunday marks the 205th anniversary of the day Meriwether Lewis launched his boat from Pittsburgh, beginning a landmark journey that took him down the Ohio, up the Mississippi and Missouri and on to the Pacific. This morning, a state historical marker commemorating the event was unveiled near the David L. Lawrence Convention Center.
"On Aug. 31, 1803, Capt. Meriwether Lewis launched a 50-foot 'keeled boat' from Fort Fayette, 100 yards downriver. This marked the beginning of the three-year expedition commissioned by President Jefferson, which opened America to westward expansion," the marker reads.
"I think this is a wonderful thing for Pittsburgh to be recognized officially as the launch of the exhibition," said David Halaas, former head of the library and archives and publications divisions at the Sen. John Heinz History Center. "People in Pittsburgh are understanding that now, and before very few people thought about it. The name of Pittsburgh as the original gateway to the West, it really is true."
The marker has been installed just east of the convention center along the 10th Street Bypass, on a small grassy triangle adjacent to the bike trail that connects the Strip District to Allegheny Riverfront Park and Downtown.
First Published August 28, 2008 4:34 pm