Publisher description for William Clark and the shaping of the West / by Landon Jones.


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Between 1803 and 1806 Meriwether Lewis and William Clark co-captained the fabled expedition across the North American continent. But while Lewis ended his life just three years later, Clark, as the highest ranking Ferderal official in the West, spent three decades overseeing its consequences: Indian removal and the destruction of Native America. In a rare combination of storytelling and scholarship, best-selling author Landon Y. Jones presents for the first time Clark's remarkable life and influential career in their full complexity.

Like every colonial family living on Virginia's violent frontier, the Clarks killed Indians and acquired land acting on behalf of the United States, William would prove the most successful at it. Clark's life was spent fighting in America's fifty-year running war with the Indians (and their European allies) over the western borderlands. The struggle began with his famed brother George Roger's western campaigns during the American Revolution, continued through the vicious western battles of the War of 1812, and ended with the Black Hawk War in the 1830s. In vividly depicting Clark's life, Jones memorably captures the dark and bloody ground of America's early West. Newly discovered documents also shed light on Clark's relationship with Lewis, the extent to which the latter relied on Clark, and how the famed expedition itself was of a piece with the espionage, intrigue, and warfare that realized America's grander enterprise: the shaping of the West. No one played a larger part in that accomplishment that William Clark.


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