Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
- Alternate meaning: Davy Crockett (nuclear device)
David Crockett (August 17, 1786 – March 6, 1836) was an American folk-hero usually referred to now as Davy Crockett. He represented Tennessee in the U.S. Congress, went to Texas, and died at the Alamo.
Crockett was born in Greene County, Tennessee, and was not well educated. In 1813 he served under General (later, President) Andrew Jackson in the campaign against the Creek Indians. In 1828 he was elected to Congress. As a Congressman, Crockett supported the rights of squatters, who were barred from buying land in the West without already owning property. He also opposed President Jackson's Indian Removal Act, and his opposition to Jackson caused his defeat when he ran for re-election in 1830 but won when he ran again in 1832.
In 1834, his book titled: A Narrative of the Life of David Crockett , was published. Crockett went to the East to promote the book, and was narrowly defeated for re-election. In 1835 he was again defeated for re-election: Saying, "You may all go to hell, and I will go to Texas," he did just that, joining the Texas Revolution.
He took part in the Battle of the Alamo (February 23 - March 6, 1836) and for many years was believed to have gone down fighting there, but according to some historical testimonies Crockett was hidden under a bed. Evidence has come to light since 1955 that makes it likely Crockett was one of the half dozen or so men taken prisoner after that battle and summarily executed by General (later President of Mexico) Antonio López de Santa Anna.
One of his sayings, which were published in almanacs between 1835 and 1856 (along with those of Daniel Boone and Kit Carson) was, "Be always sure you are right, then go ahead." In 1954 his legend was again popularized by Walt Disney, who produced a five episode television series about him (starring Fess Parker); the Ballad of Davy Crockett and coonskin caps like the one he wore in those films were all the rage for young boys for a time. After that fad had waned, John Wayne starred as Crockett in the 1960 feature film The Alamo (the first film he also directed).
In the movies Crockett has also been played by Charles K. French (1909), Dustin Farnum (1916), Cullen Landis (1926), Jack Perrin (1937), Lane Chandler (1937), Robert Barrat (1939), George Montgomery (1950), Trevor Bardette (1953), Arthur Hunnicutt (1955), James Griffith (1956), Brian Keith (1987), Johnny Cash (1988), Tim Dunigan (1988 & 1989), David Zucker (1991), John Schneider (1995), Scott Wickware (2000), Justin Howard (2002) and Billy Bob Thornton (2003).
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