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Meriwether Lewis (1774-1809), American explorer. Along with William Clark, he led an expedition to find a route leading to the Pacific coast of the USA. Starting from a camp near St Louis, the expedition travelled to the coast of what is now Oregon and returned along the same route. The journey lasted from May 1804 to September 1806, in which time they covered almost 13,000 kilometres. Lewis was appointed governor of the Louisiana Territory in 1807 as a reward for this undertaking. As well as jointly leading the expedition, he was the group's naturalist, and collected numerous plant and animal specimens. Lewis died in mysterious circumstances in 1809.
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