- from Sacagawea
When Sacagawea was born, George Washington was president, and the country was just 13 states along the Atlantic Coast. But all that would soon change, and quickly.
In 1801, Thomas Jefferson became president. He dreamed of a nation that stretched from the Atlantic to the Pacific. He gave little thought to the Native Americans who had lived on this land for thousands of years. But the European nations that had claimed various parts of the West worried him. He was especially worried about France, which had recently bought from Spain a huge piece of land called Louisiana. The important port of New Orleans was at the southern tip of this land. Jefferson sent a representative to France to try to get the French leader, Napoléon, to sell New Orleans to the United States. Jefferson got way more than he bargained for.