Sacagawea For Kids
Sacagawea is a famous Native American woman who helped on a huge expedition around the Americas called the Lewis Clarke Expedition.
Sacagawea was born in 1788 near present-day Idaho and Montana to the Shoshone nation. She was kidnapped aged 12 in a battle.
She was taken to a Hidatsa village near modern-day Dakota. She was married off one year later in a forced marriage to a Quebecois trapper (animal catcher).
This man, Toussaint Charbonneau, bought two women as his wives.
Lewis and Clark Expedition
In 1804, two men called Meriwether Lewis and William Clark wanted to explore the Missouri River. They wanted a trapper and a translator to help them.
They had heard about a French trapper who had a wife who spoke Shoshone, Sacagawea.
They set off in 1805. Sacagawea was very helpful on their mission. When they met Shoshone people, they discovered one of the chiefs was Sacagawea’s brother.
Sacagawea helped the expedition members trade and negotiate with the Native Americans.
Clark believed that having Sacagawea also helped show the people they encountered that they were not coming to start a war.
Sacagawea also had lots of knowledge about local plants, foods and customs that helped on the difficult parts of the journey, especially across Rocky Mountains.
We know a lot about Sacagawea because Clark and Lewis left lots of journal entries about her during the expedition.
Memorials for Sacagawea
The National American Woman Suffrage Association have been celebrating Sacagawea’s achievements since the early 20th century.
There have been lots of memorials and plaques to commemorate Sacagawea. In 2000, there was a dollar coin released in her honour.
Sacagawea has featured in lots of films and books. She was even a character in the Night of the Museum films. She has lakes and parks named after her in the United States, too.
At what age did Sacagawea married?
Which expedition did Sacagawea go on?
Why was Sacagawea taken on the expedition?
Name two ways Sacagawea was helpful on the expedition.
Which films did Sacagawea feature in?