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Louisiana Purchase and Its Legacy


Take students behind the scenes of the 1803 Louisiana Purchase, an epic land deal between the economically troubled French government and the United States, which not only doubled the size of our country but also put our fledgling constitution to the test. Historic documents include: a 1775 French map of Louisiana Territory, selected treaty pages, letters from Thomas Jefferson and Zebulon Pike, an act of Congress authorizing the president to take possession of Louisiana Territory, and an excerpt from the memoirs of the French governor of Louisiana. Historian: Robyn Hallowell Griswold. The contents of this Focus Jackdaw feature:

Support Materials

  • Illustrated Broadsheet Essay
  • Timeline
  • Critical Thinking Questions
  • Recommended Reading List
  • Louisiana Purchase Map

Historical Documents

  • Carte de la Louisiane et des Pays Voisins — Map of Louisiana and Neighboring Countries, ca. 1775
  • First page of the Treaty of Cession, April 30, 1803
  • Cover (3a) and signature page (3b) of the Convention for Payment of sums due by France to the United States, April 30, 1803
  • Excerpt from Thomas Jefferson’s letter to Senator Breckinridge, August 12, 1803
  • Congressional act authorizing the president to “take possession” of the Territory of Louisiana, October 31, 1803
  • Excerpt from Memoirs of My Life, by Pierre Clément de Laussat, French governor of Louisiana, December 20, 1803
  • Engraving depicting the flag raising ceremony in New Orleans upon the transfer of Louisiana from France to the United States, December 20, 1803
  • Letter from Captain Zebulon Pike to Thomas Jefferson, October 29, 1807

Price: $36.50



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