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Essay #1 - Adam Fender William Esposito English 802...

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Adam Fender William Esposito English 802 January 31, 2011 Sacajawea The general public knows very little about Sacajawea and her real life. Most people only know what their eighth grade history books told them, which is basically that she led Lewis and Clark across America and that she is on the golden dollar. Furthermore, some may think that she was a very intelligent young woman or even a hero. However, in Ben Metcalf’s essay, Wooden Dollar The Undiscovered Sacajawea , he reveals Sacajawea’s faults and her true story. He basically denies the claim that she was a hero or a leader. He belittles her and exposes her real life to the reader. Metcalf wrote this essay to inform people that Sacajawea is not who she is portrayed to be. This may make one think, what is all the hype behind Sacajawea? And why does she deserve to be on the golden dollar over others who have served the country in more important ways? When Sacajawea is brought up, the first thing that comes to mind is how she is an Indian princess or her leadership ability in helping Lewis and Clark explore the Mid- West. For example, on Answers.com, someone asked, “Who was Sacajawea?” The first response was “ Sacajawea was a Shoshone Indian princess.” Also, another site explains that she found edible plants for the men to eat, as well as retrieving Louis and Clark’s journal when their canoe capsized, all while nursing her baby. If one reads this information and does not have any valid evidence to refute this, they may think she is
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some kind of hero or national icon. This is precisely why Metcalf wrote Wooden Dollar , to show everyone the undiscovered Sacajawea. Metcalf’s essay differs from most texts because he doesn’t think very highly of Sacajawea or the role she played in Louis and Clark’s journey. The first point Metcalf brings up is how when Sacajawea was only fourteen or fifteen when she was pregnant with her first child. Already, she isn’t exactly what most American’s would like to see as
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