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On This Day: Lewis and Clark mistakenly believe they reached the Pacific Ocean

Portraits of William Clark (left) and Meriwether Lewis (right), by Charles Willson Peale, 1807
Portraits of William Clark (left) and Meriwether Lewis (right), by Charles Willson Peale, 1807(Independence National Historical Park, Philadelphia)
Published: Nov. 7, 2020 at 5:35 PM EST
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RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - On this day in history, Nov. 7, 1805: After a long and arduous 18-month journey, Lewis and Clark mistakenly believe they’ve reached their ultimate goal.

Meriweather Lewis wrote in his journal, “Great joy in camp, we are in a view of the ocean. This Pacific Ocean which we have been so long anxious to see.”

Lewis and his co-commander William Clark were both Virginians and they were not yet at the Pacific Ocean.

Learn all about their long journey — including stories you never learned in school — from  Dr. Gregory Smithers, a history professor at Virginia Commonwealth University in Episode 5 of Season 4:

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