Independence Day

While traveling the Lewis and Clark Trail along the Columbia River Gorge (mostly I-84), I’ve been thinking about the people who made our independence possible.  A Google search of the holiday pointed me to a recent posting: Six Things You Didn’t Know about July 4th.

Did you know we should be celebrating on the 2nd?  Congress made the official call for freedom on July 2, 1776 but later adopted the official Declaration of Independence on July 4th, although members of Congress didn’t sign the document until August 2, 1776.

It was also interesting to see that Thomas Jefferson, the principal author of the Declaration of Independence and the third president, died on July 4, 1826, fifty years after freedom was declared.

One of the many breakthroughs Jefferson made during his presidency was to purchase and later send explorers into the west via the Louisiana Purchase. Meriwether Lewis was assigned the challenge with Jefferson’s blessing and an open invitation to do whatever necessary to get from St. Louis to the west coast.  I’m just starting the book Undaunted Courage by Stephen E. Ambrose, so I won’t can’t give you a full history lesson, but since you remember all this from high school you probably don’t need the reminder anyway.  Right? 🙂

Lewis and Clark journey

Or, if you are like me, you don’t remember much from history class and wish you would have paid more attention to the teacher!  Here is a brief rundown on the Corps of Discovery led by Meriwether Lewis and William Clark.

ft clatsop 2

Visiting a museum or historical site makes history come alive.  A few days ago, Kate, Dan, Barb and I visited Ft. Clatsop (above), where Lewis and Clark wintered in 1805-1806 after successfully landing in Seaside, OR (below).

lewis and clark in seaside 2


“Ocian in view! O! the Joy” “This great Pacific Octean which we been So long anxious to See. and the roreing or noise made by the waves brakeing on the rockey Shores (as I Suppose) may be heard distictly. William Clark Quote on the Pacific Ocean November 7, 1805 

ft stevens 2

Our stay at nearby Ft. Stevens State Park afforded us many opportunities to explore a quiet section of the Pacific coast, the western part Columbia River Gorge, and the military installation at the Fort.  At the end of two nights’ stay Kate’s friends Dan and Barb headed back to Boulder and we headed inland.    Stay tuned for more adventures along the Columbia River Gorge including some spectacular waterfalls!

Note to readers: If you are contemplating a vacation in Oregon during the summer remember to secure reservations a few months in advance.  You will be glad you did!

Are you dreaming about hitting the beach? These items may be useful:

Beach Umbrella
Desk Top Beach Zen Garden
Soft-side cooler
Sunscreen Lotion
Floppy Sun Hat

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2 Comments on “Independence Day

  1. And John Adams died on the same day as Jefferson, just hours apart.


  2. Wow! Happy July 4th from all the way back here in StL where the Lewis and Clark adventure began.
    Love you, Auntie Shari!
    💕 Mariah & Javier


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