In 1803 President Thomas Jefferson bought the Louisiana territory from the French for $15,000,000. The purchase made President Jefferson's dream of extending the US west of the Mississippi River come true. Now the much larger United States had difficult questions to answer: How would Louisiana be governed? How would it be divided into states? Would those states be free states or slave states? What would happen to the Native Americans? It would take over 10 years, a war over slavery, and the creation of 13 new states before these questions could be answered.