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gave much reliable knowledge of the Missouri, the Platte, Great Salt Lake, and the head waters of the Yellowstone.
Another explorer was Jean Nicolas Nicollet, who investigated the great basin in which Red, Arkansas, and Missouri Rivers rise, and in 1836 explored the source of the Mississippi. His work added greatly to the knowledge of the productions and natural resources of these sections. On his return, he was engaged by the war department to visit the far west and make a report on that region from the upper waters of the Missouri to the British line. On this expedition he was accompanied by John C. Frémont, who, next to Lewis and Clark, merits the title of The Pathfinder. While his work was mainly directed to the lands beyond the Rockies, yet his repeated journeys through the Louisiana Purchase territory and the great interest aroused by his work did much to open up the West.
The object of Frémont's first expedition, after his journey with Nicollet, was to obtain knowledge of the vast unexplored interior, of the Indians, especially in Nebraska, of a south pass through the Rocky Mountains, and a way to Oregon. On this expedition he planted the American flag on the peak which bears his name, which is the highest point in the Rocky Mountains, thirteen thousand feet above sea level. On his return to Washington he made such a favorable report of the country explored that settlers soon turned their attention in that direction. His second expedition, which started in May, 1843, went farther to the south. On September 6, 1843, he came in sight of Great Salt Lake. "His investigations corrected many vague and erroneous ideas about this region, of which no accurate account had ever been given and had great influence in promoting the settlement of Utah and the Pacific States."
Frémont described the region around Salt Lake as one in which there was an abundance of good water and timber, well adapted to agriculture, and he recommended it for settlement. It was his report which turned the attention of the
Mormons to Utah as a place for establishing themselves and led to the founding of Salt Lake City.
An expedition undertaken by Frémont in 1848 resulted in establishing the route later followed by the Southern Pacific Railroad. In 1853 he fitted out an expedition at his own expense and crossed the continent on the line of the thirtyeighth and thirty-ninth parallels of latitude and reached California.
Journeys overland to California or into the interior now became frequent, and the settler followed the explorer and pioneer. The scenes which were familiar in Kentucky and Tennessee a half century before were now repeated, except that the greater number of the emigrants made the Indian resistance less formidable.
THE ADMISSION OF LOUISIANA
AFTER the completion of the Louisiana Purchase the United States found itself in a peculiar position. How should the recently acquired territory be governed? There was no precedent to follow because the Northwest Territory had been included within the limits of the nation when the Treaty of Peace with Great Britain had been consummated. The promise had been made in spite of great opposition in Congress "that the people of the newly acquired territory should be incorporated in the Union of the United States and admitted as soon as possible according to the principles of the Federal Constitution, to the enjoyment of all the rights, advantages, and immunities of citizens of the United States."
The question was complicated by the character of the population. It is probable that a majority of the whites were French; there were some Spaniards and a rapidly increasing number of immigrants from the Southern and Western States, who flocked into the newly acquired territory as soon as it came into possession of the Union. There were large numbers of negro slaves, and, scattered here and there over the vast territory, were thousands of Indians. The French formed the most important and influential element and they now wished to see the United States fulfil its promise according to the French interpretation of it. But the national government evinced a disposition to proceed
slowly in giving them the desired liberty. The expression "admitted as soon as possible according to the principles of the Federal Constitution" was very vague, perhaps purposely so. The interpretation of it was in the power of Congress, and, for the good of the new possession, it seemed best to go slowly and give the people of Louisiana only the liberty which they were able to use to advantage. Congress was mindful of the various experiences in government through which these people had passed, and that in the different kinds there had been no self-government. As a people the Louisianians were not familiar with AngloSaxon institutions and laws. They were, however, much more intelligent and better fitted for sharing in the administration of the government than were the French in the Illinois country. Many of the French in New Orleans were men of wealth and culture, who welcomed the transfer of their country to the United States, because they believed that the change would bring them a better government.
The citizens of the United States, who emigrated to Louisiana after the purchase was made, believed that the government would be the same in Louisiana as in the States which they had left. These immigrants united with the French in insisting upon a liberal government.
This mixture of population made the problem of government much more difficult than it was in the Northwest Territory, because in the latter the people were almost entirely from the east and had been accustomed to selfgovernment. The few French in the northwest desired only to be let alone.
The Congressional debate over the government of Louisiana is of especial interest, not only because of the skill and wisdom shown in the course of the discussion, but also because it marks a step forward in the development of the territorial policy of the United States. A committee of four was appointed to prepare a bill for the government of the Territory. The bill brought in by this committee proposed that two Territories be formed out of the newly