Lewis and Clark Heritage Days are essentially an authentic reenactment of Lewis and Clark’s rendezvous in 1804, before setting out on the exploration that led to the historical Louisiana Purchase. This will take you back to a glorious period in American History. The event is celebrated with a colorful grand parade, Sunday church service, and an informative stroll through the encampments. The days are also marked by the demonstration of weapons like musket and cannon in the afternoons, military encampment, exhibition of boat replicas, skillet throw, crafts and foods from 1804, fife & drum corps muster, tour of museums, period music, children’s games and so on.
Lewis and Clark Heritage Days the Main Events
Lewis and Clark Heritage Days are usually held during the third weekend of May every year in Saint Charles, Missouri. This year commemorates the 212th anniversary of the encampment of Clark and Lewis in the town of Saint Charles, prior to their expedition along the Missouri River. The very first commemoration of Lewis & Clark’s expedition of the historic Louisiana Purchase took place in Saint Charles in 1979. Every day opens with the raising of army colors and comes to a close with a retreat and lowering of colors. The Saint Charles Discovery Expedition is encamped in Frontier Park, with the Lewis and Clark Boathouse a few steps away, where visitors can see the Discovery Expedition boats on display.
Looking Back into History
It was President Thomas Jefferson who planned the Lewis and Clark Expedition in complete secrecy as the Spanish and French coalition owned and ruled the Louisiana Territory at that time. There followed a remarkable set of happenings in 1803, ending in the purchase of the extensive territory on behalf of the United States. The Expedition set out in 1804, after the official transfer of the land. On 14th May, Clark embarked leading a rowdy, restless, and high spirited crew, and made it along the Missouri River and landed in Saint Charles on 16th May. This concluded the purchase of this vast territory for the United States.