Between 1816 and 1823 Stephen Harriman Long headed five expeditions that traveled 26,000 miles from the Atlantic coast to the Rocky Mountains and from New Mexico to Lake Winnipeg. This book deals with two of his northern journeys—the only two for which the explorer’s personal journals are known to have survived. The 1817 journal describes Long’s trip up the Mississippi River to the Falls of St. Anthony at present-day Minneapolis and back down the river to Fort Belle Fontaine on the Missouri. The 1823 journal covers Long’s last major exploration, from Philadelphia west across present-day Pennsylvania, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Wisconsin, and Minnesota, and back along fur trade routes in Manitoba and Ontario, through the Great Lakes and newly opened parts of the Erie Canal.
The editors’ meticulous annotations to the journals clarify and update the geographical and scientific observations of Long and his associates, as well as biographical information on people the expedition met along the way, both Native and non-Native.