Robert Patterson's many-times great-grandson, Alex Chamberlin,
was an honored guest.
The Dedication of the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission
Marker Honoring ROBERT PATTERSON
Thursday, July 22, 2004
(180 years after his death)
WELCOME - and Words on Philadelphia Chapter, LCTHF
Frank Muhly, Board of Directors
GREETINGS and Words on PHMC
Wayne S. Spilove, Chairman
Dr. Peter Conn, Provost, University of Pennsylvania
PATTERSON AND LEWIS & CLARK
UNVEILING OF MARKER
Roy Goodman, Assistant Librarian, APS
Alex Chamberlin by Robert Weir, Jr., Dickson City Learning Center
THANKS - AND EXTEND THE TRAIL
Frank Muhly's remarks on Robert Patterson:
Let me add a few words about Robert Pattersons contributions
to the success of Lewiss, and eventually Clarks, efforts
from Philadelphia to the Pacific Ocean in 1805 and back to this
city in 1807.
Both Patterson and Ellicott advised Lewis against taking a theodolite
because of its delicate construction, its difficulty of transportation
and its ease of getting out of order. The instruments Patterson
advised taking were two sextants, a few artificial horizons, a good
Arnolds watch or chronometer, a surveyors compass with
a ball and socket, a two pole chain, and a set of plotting instruments.
Lewis obtained all these items here in fact, the chronometer
was his single most expensive purchase and Clark used the
plotting tools at Fort Clatsop on the Pacific Coast to convert their
directions and distances onto his renowned map of their travels.
In addition, Patterson prepared a set of astronomical formulae
for Lewis and devised a Statistical Table which Lewis could use
to set down his astronomical observations.
Frank Muhly explained, "Until very recently, few persons were
aware of Lewis and Clarks connections to Philadelphia. To
promote that essential relationship, the Philadelphia Chapter has
pursued a program of erecting markers financed partially by the
Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission at sites related to
the expedition. So far, markers have been placed to commemorate
Andrew Ellicott, Caspar Wistar, Benjamin Rush, Meriwether Lewis,
and the Schuylkill Arsenal, where 3500 lbs. of supplies were assembled
so they could be shipped by Conestoga wagon to Pittsburgh on June
He added, "And the chapter urges each of you to contact your
Senator in Washington by phone or letter or e-mail to vote yes on
the Jim Bunning Senate Bill S-2018 extending the Lewis and Clark
National Historic Trail to the east coast so that it finally fulfills
Thomas Jeffersons dream of it being a truly sea to sea
Pennsylvania Historical & Museum Commission.
Rhonda R. Cohen
William A. Cornell
Rep. Lawrence Curry
Senator Jane M. Earll
Dr. Gordon A. Haaland
Robert A. Janosov
Secretary Vicki L. Phillips
Janet S. Klein, President
Rep. Stephen Maitland
Dr. Brian C. Mitchell
Senator Allyson Schwartz
Wayne S. Spilove, Chairman
Mary Clare Zales
University of Pennsylvania
Bobert L. Barchi. MD, PhD
Office of the Provost
City of Philadelphia
John Street, Mayor
Anna C. Verna,
President City Council
1st District Councilman
Frank Muhly, on the board of directors of the Philadelphia Chapter,
Wayne S. Spilove, Chairman of the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum
Commission, and Dr. Peter Conn, Provost, University of Pennsylvania,
opened the program.
Dr. Conn noted that Robert Patterson was a vice-provost of the
University of Pennsylvania, one among his many positions.
Chapter members and guests listened to the speakers' remarks. Donna
Weaver (in the flowered dress), sculptor/engraver at the US Mint,
knew that Patterson was an early director of the Mint.
The marker was unveiled. It stands outside the post office (the
original site of the University of Pennsylvania) on Ninth Street
between Market and Chestnut.
Roy Goodman invited everyone for refreshments at Franklin Hall
of the American Philosophical Society, where the portrait of Robert
Patterson by Rembrandt Peale now hangs.