Rediscovering Lewis & Clark: A Journey with the Rooney Family

It has been called the greatest exploring expedition in American history – Lewis & Clark’s epic trek from Pittsburgh to the Pacific.

Between 1803 and 1806, Lewis & Clark’s Corps of Discovery with “undaunted courage” claimed and charted a vast new territory, made contact with Native American nations, revealed scientific wonders, and experienced adventures that captured the imagination of the nation and world.

Commissioned by the History Center, Dan and Art Rooney, along with their families, retraced the explorers’ journey 200 years later during their Corps of Rediscovery expedition. In 2003, the History Center documented the Rooney family’s “Journey of Rediscovery” as they retraced the path of Lewis and Clark’s rugged expedition west. This exhibit weaves together the history and highlights of the original Corps of Discovery with the Rooney family’s contemporary experience on the same route.

View an exciting collection of photographs and materials gathered by the Rooney family as part of Rediscovering Lewis & Clark: A Journey with the Rooney Family, an exhibition sponsored by The Heinz Endowments and National Park Service, and Lewis & Clark National Historic Trail Program.

“View of the City of Pittsburgh in 1817,” by Emma Gibson
“View of the City of Pittsburgh in 1817,” by Emma Gibson: This early view of Pittsburgh gives an idea of what the city looked like as Lewis & Clark embarked on their journey west. From the History Center Collections.
History Minute

Learn about Lewis & Clark’s expedition, which was launched here in Pittsburgh, on the Mon Wharf in this KQV Radio History Minute from History Center President and CEO Andy Masich.

Did You Know?
  • Two members of the Corps of Discovery hailed from the Pittsburgh region — George Shannon, the youngest member at 18, and John Colter, an experienced backwoodsman.
  • Another important member of the Corps from Pittsburgh was a black Newfoundland dog Seaman.
  • Lewis & Clark had served together previously in the “Chosen Rifle Company” in Western Pennsylvania during the Whiskey Rebellion.

Exhibit Gallery