About the Author
Clay S. Jenkinson
Born in Dickinson, North Dakota, in 1952, Clay Jenkinson is a cultural commentator who has devoted most of his professional career to public humanities programs. He received the Charles Frankel Prize in 1989, the National Endowment for the Humanities highest award (now called the National Humanities Medal). Well-known for his portrayal of President Thomas Jefferson, Jenkinson was a major commentator for the public television program, Thomas Jefferson, by award-winning humanities documentary producer Ken Burns.
Since his first work with the North Dakota Humanities Council in the late 1970s, Clay Jenkinson has made thousands of presentations throughout the United States and its territories, portraying Jefferson, Meriwether Lewis, Robert Oppenheimer, and, most recently, Theodore Roosevelt. He continues to appear weekly on his program, The Thomas Jefferson Hour, heard nationally on public radio.
Jenkinson has served as a scholar-in-residence at Lewis and Clark College, Portland, Oregon, and at Dickinson State University, Dickinson, North Dakota; artistic director, Great Basin Chautauqua; director, New Enlightenment Radio Network; and is currently director of the Dakota Institute Press, affiliated with the Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center in Washburn, North Dakota. He has written several books and now lives in Bismarck where he writes a weekly column for the Bismarck Tribune.
His book, A Free and Hardy Life, a biography of Theodore Roosevelt was published by the Dakota Institute, 2011. His newest book, For the Love of North Dakota and Other Essays: Sundays with Clay in the Bismarck Tribune was published by the Dakota Institute in August 2012. A graduate of the University of Minnesota, he attended Oxford University as a Rhodes Scholar.
A Vast and Open Plain
Experience the Lewis and Clark Expedition by reading, together in one place, entries from the journals of Meriwether Lewis, William Clark, Patrick Gass, John
Ordway, and Joseph Whitehouse. A Vast and Open Plain features all the journal entries written by the Corps of Discovery for each of the 218 days that the explorers spent in what is now North Dakota. The 648-page book is beautifully enhanced by nearly 100 color and black-and-white images, as well as
original maps. Clay S. Jenkinson edited and provided annotations for A Vast
and Open Plain, and also provided an introduction and supplementary
material. The book features a foreword by James P. Ronda, the preeminent Lewis and Clark scholar in the country who holds the H.G. Barnard Chair of History at the University of Tulsa.