The Trail of Lewis and Clark by Olin Wheeler, First Edition, Two Volumes, 1904

Wheeler, Olin, The Trail of Lewis and Clark. New York and London: G. P. Putnam’s Sons, The Knickerbocker Press, 1904. First edition, two volumes. Rebound in quarter leather with slipcase.

This is a first edition of Olin Wheeler’s The Trail of Lewis and Clark from 1904. The two volume set was published out of both New York and London by G.P. Putnam’s Sons. Wheeler’s volumes detail the famous story of exploration across the U.S. by explorers Captain Meriwether Lewis and Second Lieutenant William Clark, with a description of the trail they took and how their exploration impacted and changed the United States. Wheeler’s two volumes are complete with 200 illustrations, including manuscript documents, copies of journal entries provided by Reuben Thwaites, 24 copies of paintings by prominent American and Euro-American artists, and 15 maps.

The Lewis and Clark Expedition, also known as the Corps of Discovery Expedition, was the first American expedition to cross what is now the western portion of the United States. It began near St. Louis, made its way westward, and passed through the continental divide to reach the Pacific coast. 

The expedition was composed of a selected group of U.S. Army volunteers under the command of Captain Meriwether Lewis and his close friend, Second Lieutenant William Clark. Their perilous journey lasted from May 1804 to September 1806. The primary objective was to explore and map the newly acquired territory, to find a practical overland route across the western half of the continent, and to establish an American presence in a territory already eyed by Britain and other European powers. 

The campaign's secondary objectives were scientific and economic: to study the area's plants, animal life, and geography, and to establish trade with local Native American tribes. With maps, sketches, and journals in hand, the expedition returned to St. Louis to report its findings to Jefferson.


Overall good condition. No severe internal wear, besides light toning. Rebound in maroon-colored quarter leather and cloth with marbled endpapers, gilt and embossed spines, and raised bands. Gilt motif detail to front boards. Matching archival slipcase in cloth with inlaid portraits of Lewis and Clark and gilt detail.

Dimensions: Book 8.5" H x 6" W x 1.5" D; Case 9" H x 6.5" W x 4" D.

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