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La Charrette Village

Interested in what Lewis & Clark, Daniel Boone, Zebulon Pike, John Colter, President Jefferson and other notables thought about America's newly acquired westernmost village? Enjoy the west...before it became distorted by TV, movies and novels.

Location: Port Aransas, Texas, United States

A retired professor of Food and Animal Science at Texas A&M University, The University of Connecticut and Texas Tech. A cowboy in my previous life...never thought about being a professor or an author.

Saturday, January 07, 2006

Questing La Charrette: Cartography

Have you ever attempted to document a ghost? It is not an easy task to map a 'ghost' village. La Charrette collaborator Jerome Holtmeyer was the map person. For years he was committed to pinpointing the exact location of the village and the Corps of Discovery campsites there in 1804 and 1806. Maps, maps, maps describe how Jerry thinks.

His efforts resulted in my creating this overlay of the old village with present day Marthasville. Maps like this one, which appears as Figure 5 in La Charrette, and Figure 2 are not only expensive to have professionally produced, but required lots of detail study, searching and calaulating as well as both actual and electronic survey work. The title link gives La Charrette along with other Missouri 'Ghost' towns, not all of which have recieved as much attention as the one which today is central to two national bicentennial celebrations.

Other maps were critical to the complete questing of village history. It was the farm survey of Jean Baptiste Luzon which became pivitol in our pinpointing the Lewis and Clark campsites. His 1806 farm survey, shown as Figure 6 in the book, depicts the entry of Charrette Creek into the Missouri River at that time as indicated above. And there was no suitable map documenting La Charrette as the mostwestern settlement of the Louisiana Purchase. So it was developed and produced as Figure 2.


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