The Expeditions of Zebulon Montgomery Pike, to Headwaters of the Mississippi River, Through Louisiana Territory, and in New Spain, During the Years 1805-6-7

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Author: Zebulon Montgomery Pike (1779-1813)

Year: 1895

Publisher: Francis P Harper

Place: New York


3 volumes: cxiii+356 pages with frontispiece and tables; vi-[357]-855 pages; [856]-955 pages with index, map and pocket 6 fold out maps in rear. Royal octavo (9 1/2" x 6 1/2") bound in original publisher's green cloth with ruled edges and gilt lettering to spine. Edited by Elliott Coues.  (Howes: P372) Limited to 1150 copies of which this is number 734.

Zebulon Montgomery Pike Jr. (January 5, 1779 - April 27, 1813) was an American soldier and explorer for whom Pikes Peak in Colorado is named. His Pike expedition mapped much of the southern portion of the Louisiana Purchase. Pike was born in Lamberton, New Jersey, now a part of Trenton. His father, also named Zebulon Pike, was an officer in the Continental Army under General George Washington and served in the United States Army after the end of the Revolutionary War. 

The younger Pike grew to adulthood in a series of Midwestern outposts-the frontier of the United States at the time-in Ohio and Illinois. He joined his father's regiment as a cadet in 1794, earned a commission as ensign in 1799 and a first lieutenancy later that year. Pike married Clarissa Harlow Brown in 1801 and continued his military career in logistics and payroll at a series of frontier posts.

 His career was taken up by General James Wilkinson, who had been appointed Governor of the Upper Louisiana Territory. In 1805, Wilkinson ordered Zebulon Pike to find the source of the Mississippi River. Nearly immediately upon his return Pike was ordered out once again to lead an exploratory expedition to find the headwaters of the Arkansas River and Red River. Near St. Louis on July 15, 1806, Pike led what is now known as "the Pike expedition" from Fort Bellefontaine to explore the southwest. Pike never successfully reached the summit of the famous peak that bears his name (Pikes Peak.) He attempted it in November 1806, made it as far as Mt. Rosa to the southeast of Pikes Peak, and gave up the ascent in waist-deep snow after having gone almost two days without food. This journey, for which he is most remembered, ended with his capture on February 26, 1807 by Spanish authorities in northern New Mexico, now part of Colorado. Pike and his men were taken to Santa Fe, then to Chihuahua where he appeared before the Commandant General Salcedo. Salcedo housed Pike with Juan Pedro Walker, a cartographer, who also acted as an interpreter and as a transcriber/translator for Pike's confiscated documents. It was while with Walker that Pike had access to various maps of the southwest and learned of Mexican discontent with Spanish rule. Pike and his men were released, under protest, to the United States at the Louisiana border on July 1, 1807.


Extremities rubbed, title to volume one detached, unread with the pages needing to be separated else very good. Due to the size and weight the may require additional postage.

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