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Wild West Western Facts

David Crockett

David Crockett(August 17, 1786  – March 6, 1836)

David Crockett was a celebrated 19th-century American folk hero, frontiersman, soldier and politician.   He represented Tennessee in the U.S. House of Representatives, served in the Texas Revolution, and died as a result of the Battle of the Alamo.

He was born in 1786 in Tennessee and lived a hard working life and strived to educate himself. Following a series of lost loves, he married Mary Findlay just before his 20th birthday.

In 1813 he enlisted in the Tennessee Volunteers as a mounted rifleman in an expedition against Indians led by Andrew Jackson .  He later fought the British as well as Indians. His wife died and he remarried, gaining a large dowry that allowed him to pursue a political career. He increased his wealth through land speculation and ownership of a gunpowder factory and a distillery.

He ran for state legislator in 1821 and his became well known for his country vernacular and boastful stories. He wasn't much good in the job so his family moved to western Tennessee and he gained reputation as the killer of black bears, using his trusty .41 caliber Kentucky rifle which he named "Old Betsy". He was elected to Congress in 1827 but found Washington boring and ineffectual, so he left the Democratic Party.

Throughout his political career, Crockett pushed his land bill which would grant land to squatters. He failed to be reelected and pushed on to Texas to fight against Mexico. Crockett was one of the few survivors of the Battle of the Alamo, but was immediately taken prisoner and brought to General Santa Anna and promptly executed.

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