How Did Sacagawea Change History?

Sacagawea changed history in many ways, due to her ability to communicate in different languages and translate the message for Lewis and Clark during the expedition of exploring the new land. She was among the first Americans to cross the continent of North America and acted as a travel guide to the team.

She was kidnapped from her home country in around 1800 by Hidatsa and was sold 3 years later to Toussaint Carbonneau, a French-Canadian fur trapper. When the United States received the vast Louisiana Purchase from France in 1803, President Jefferson hired Lewis and Clark to explore the land. The land was in the same area as Sacagawea’s home, so she knew the place well, and the men were linked to her for direction.

As the only woman in a company of 40 men, Sacagawea offered much assistance essential to the expedition. Apart from her ability to communicate and translate other languages, Sacagawea could find edible plants for the team. At one point, their boat capsized and she saved some important documents, cargo and supplies. Her presence in the team represented trustworthiness and peace, because during their journey new communities were lured into befriending them when they saw her and her baby. During their return journey in 1806, she helped the team to navigate the lands that would late be known as the Sacajawea Historical Area safely.