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Sacagawea traveled with the expedition thousands of miles from North Dakota to the Pacific Ocean, and helped establish cultural contacts with Native American populations, in addition to her contributions to the natural history. For the Hewlett-Packard processor, see HP Sacajawea. For other uses, see Sacagawea (disambiguation)., Sakakawea or Sacajawea May 1788 – December 20, 1812) was a Lemhi Shoshone woman who is known for her help to the Lewis and Clark Expedition in achieving their chartered mission objectives by exploring the Louisiana Territory.
In January, when a whale's carcass washed up onto the beach south of Fort Clatsop, Sacagawea insisted on her right to go see this "monstrous fish." On the return trip, they approached the Rocky Mountains in July 1806.
Posthumously, in 1977, she was inducted into the National Cowgirl Hall of Fame, in Fort Worth, Texas.
In 2001, she was given the title of Honorary Sergeant, Regular Army, by then-president Bill Clinton.
At approximately age 13, Sacagawea was sold into a non-consensual "marriage" to Toussaint Charbonneau, a Quebecois trapper living in the village.
He also had also bought an enslaved Otter Woman, another young Shoshone, as his "wife." Charbonneau was reported to have purchased both girls to be his "wives" from the Hidatsa, or to have won Sacagawea while gambling.
When they descended into the more temperate regions on the other side, Sacagawea helped to find and cook camas roots to help them regain their strength.
As the expedition approached the mouth of the Columbia River on the Pacific Coast, Sacagawea gave up her beaded belt to enable the captains to trade for a fur robe they wished to give to President Thomas Jefferson.
Sacagawea is known to be an important part of Lewis and Clark expedition, which is well known in the American public imagination.
The National American Woman Suffrage Association of the early twentieth century adopted her as a symbol of women's worth and independence, erecting several statues and plaques in her memory, and doing much to spread the story of her accomplishments.
Clark's journal entry for November 20, 1805 reads: one of the Indians had on a roab made of 2 Sea Otter Skins the fur of them were more butifull than any fur I had ever Seen both Capt.
Lewis & my Self endeavored to purchase the roab with different articles at length we precured it for a belt of blue beeds which the Squar—wife of our interpreter Shabono wore around her waste....
A week later, on July 13, Sacagawea advised Clark to cross into the Yellowstone River basin at what is now known as Bozeman Pass.