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The Jeffersonian cyclopedia;

a comprehensive collection of the views of Thomas Jefferson classified and arranged in alphabetical order under nine thousand titles relating to government, politics, law, education, political economy, finance, science, art, literature, religious freedom, morals, etc.;

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9091. WESTERN EXPLORATION, Michaux expedition.—
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9091. WESTERN EXPLORATION, Michaux expedition.—

The chief objects of
your journey are to find the shortest and most
convenient route of communication between the
United States and the Pacific ocean, within the
temperate latitudes, and to learn such particulars
as can be obtained of the country through
which the Missouri passes, its productions, inhabitants,
and other interestign circumstances.
As a channel of communication between these
States and the Pacific ocean, the Missouri, so
far as it extends, presents itself under circumstances
of unquestioned preference. * * * It would seem by the latest maps as if a, river
called the Oregon interlocked with the Missouri
for a considerable distance, and entered the
Pacific ocean not far southward from Nootka
Sound. But the [Philosophical] Society are
aware that these maps are not to be trusted,
so far as to be the ground of any positive instruction
to you. * * * You will in the
course of your journey, take notice of the country
you pass through, its general face, soil, rivers,
mountains, its productions—animal, vegetable,
and mineral—so far as they may be new
to us, and may also be useful or very curious. [517]
To Andre Michaux. Washington ed. ix, 434. Ford ed., vi, 159.
(Jan. 1793)


This expedition was started by private subscriptions
under the patronage of the American Philosophical
Society. Jefferson was a large subscriber
to the fund.—Editor.