Birth of William Clark
Country Gentlemen on the Frontier
>>Revolutionary WarThe Falls of the Ohio
William and George Rogers Clark
Of greater influence on Clark's life were the Revolutionary War and the idea of soldiering. As the event that defined late eighteenth-century American life, the Revolutionary War certainly left its mark on the six year-old William Clark. Five of his brothers fought in the war. John died of tuberculosis while interred by the English, and brother Richard was killed. George Rogers and Jonathan distinguished themselves, both attaining the rank of general. Jonathan received a letter of commendation for his valiant service, and George Rogers secured the Ohio Valley for the United States. Due to the overwhelming influence of his family and the pervasiveness of military culture in American life, William, too, wanted to become a soldier. William signed up for military service in 1789, four years after moving to Louisville, under Major John Herdin in order to help curb the Indian tribes north of the Ohio River that continually threatened the settlements in Kentucky (Steffen 17).
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