Children's LiteratureSacagawea, with her baby tied to her back, is familiar to many Americans as the Native American image imprinted on the 2000 gold dollar coin. This honor is in recognition of her invaluable role in early American history as interpreter for the Lewis and Clark Expedition. In 1804, President Thomas Jefferson commissions Army officers Meriwether Lewis and William Clark to explore and map the territory acquired from France in the Louisiana Purchase of 1803. This vast land west of the Mississippi River will eventually become 15 new states. Sacagawea, daughter to a chief of the Shoshone tribe living in the Rocky Mountains in the late 1700s, is kidnapped by a rival tribe and taken hundreds of miles from her home. Her life takes many twists and turns. While not of her choosing, these events combine to ensure her place in history. She is sold in marriage to Canadian fur trader and later hired to accompany Lewis and Clark as translator. Notably, the presence of Sacagawea helps in another important way. Clark reports, "a woman in a party of men is a token of peace." This is certainly the case when the expedition reaches Sacagawea's own Shoshone tribe and asks to trade for horses. As in the other books in this "Native American Legends" series, author McLeese is careful to use illustrations, sidebars and other reference notations to add interesting facts and introductory cultural details for classroom study and discussion. 2004, Rourke Publishing, Ages 8 to 12.