Envisaging the West: Thomas Jefferson and the Roots of Lewis and Clark


Place Name

Holston River

Thomas Walker's Journal (1750) In March 1750 (1749 under the Julian Calendar), Thomas Walker and several companions set off through western Virginia into modern-day Kentucky. His journal documents some of the earliest Euro-American impressions of the Cumberland region.

Treaty of Lochaber Continued consternation over the exact location of boundary between the Cherokee nation and Virginia led to this 1770 settlement of the line. At issue was a contested swath of land that had been ceded to the Indians at Hard Labor. The new agreement adjusted the border to give lands east of a line running from the Holston River to the convergence of the Great Canaway (Great Kanawha) and Ohio Rivers to the British province of Virginia.

An act for dividing the county of Botetourt into two distinct counties. Petitioned by an ever growing number of settlers in Botetourt County, the General Assembly agreed to the creation of a the county of Fincastle for the more convenient establishment of local governmental institutions for settlers beyond Blue Ridge. The act describes the boundaries of Fincastle, establishes the responsibilities of the county court and local justices of the peace.

An act for dividing the county of Fincastle into three distinct counties, and the parish of Botetourt into four distinct parishes. As more settlers moved into Fincastle County, the demand for local institutions - courts, justices of the peace, etc. - grew. The General Assembly divided Fincastle into the counties of Kentucky, Washington, and Montgomery. This act defined the boundaries of the three counties, established courts, identified county seats, and recognized justices of the peace.

Avery's Treaty/Treaty of Holston This treaty between North Carolina and the Cherokee is referred to frequently in Daniel Smith's Journal as the Virginia and Carolina Commissioners work with the Cherokee to establish boundary lines.

Daniel Smith's Journal (1779-1780) In 1779, with other surveyors and adventurers from Virginia and North Carolina, Daniel Smith and Thomas Walker set out to extend the Virginia-North Carolina boundary line far beyond the Cumberland Gap. From August 1779 until August 1780, the men traveled from southern Virginia, to the Falls of the Ohio River, and back to Virginia. In addition to their survey duties, the men worked secretly for Thomas Jefferson, meeting with George Rogers Clark at the Falls of the Ohio River to scout locations for the planned Fort Jefferson.

Treaty of Hopewell This treaty further codified the relationship between the Cherokees and the American government