The Lewis & Clark Boathouse and Nature Center is dedicated to the adventures and accomplishments of the famous Lewis & Clark Expedition. This certified site on the Lewis & Clark National Historic Trail is located in Historic St. Charles along the Missouri River near the 1804 campsite of the Corps of Discovery. Since 1769, Saint Charles, Missouri, a restored historic city on the Missouri River, has been welcoming visitors to its shores. Founded by French Canadian fur trader Louis Blanchette, the city was named Les Petites Cotes, (“The Little Hills” ) which later evolved into Saint Charles. The town regularly welcomed guests from many nations and grew into an important trading center for countless pioneers. Because of its strategic location on the Missouri River and its entrance to the western territory known as the Louisiana Purchase, it was a critical destination for thousands upon thousands of travelers.