almost heros leslie edwards william hunt louisiana purchase westward expansion thomas jefferson

Almost Heroes (1998)

The year is 1804.

Adventurers Bartholomew Hunt and Leslie Edwards are in a race against Meriwether Lewis and William Clark to explore the Louisiana Purchase and reach the Pacific Ocean. At the start their expedition is riddled with problems, from most of the corps deserting before leaving St. Louis to a lack of moral on their first night in the wilderness.

During their trip up the Missouri River, they encounter wild animals, strange settlements, sickness, and foreign explorers. As if that all that wasn’t bad enough, the group of explorers take a treacherous ride down a white water mountain river and are captured by the Spanish explorers. Edwards and Hunt finish Act II by running through a corn pit gauntlet  of pain to escape.


The conquistador Hidalgo is going to cut off Shaquinna’s hair. Edwards and Hunt recruit some Native American braves to help them save their company.

Where did Bidwell get that wooden leg?

Edwards tells Bidwell, when he returns to camp the day after being taken away by a bear, that he shall fashion the finest wooden leg he’s ever seen. This is done just before their arrival at Snake’s Bend.

How are those braves able to fight so well?

Thanks to Edwards and Hunt, they were able to rest on the journey to the Spanish camp. Rest is worth more than most folks give it credit.

Would a bald eagle be able to carry a grown man?

I’ll refer you to this debate.

If Edwards and Hunt beat Lewis and Clark to the Pacific, why do we only know about Lewis and Clark?

Lewis and Clark followed Hunt’s call to “Go home, losers!” They went home to St. Louis. There they contacted Thomas Jefferson to share the tale of their journey. Edwards and Hunt, however, convince their company to walk to Asia and Europe. The food alone was worth the trip.


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