Jedediah Smith: Scholar and Survivor

As a young boy, Jedediah Smith dreams of a lifetime exploring the frontier after reading about Lewis and Clark’s great expedition. In 1822, he gets his chance to venture west when he joins William Ashley’s expedition as a hunter. A natural in the vast frontier, Smith survives a vicious grizzly bear attack, hostile Native Americans, the unforgiving desert, starvation, and dehydration. Throughout his incredible journeys, Smith and his party become the first white men to reach California through the Mohave desert, travel from the west through the Sierra Nevada, and venture through the unforgiving Great Basin—exploring more of the frontier than anyone who came before him.