How Davy Crockett became an American legend

  • Published: 07 August 2019
  • Was Davy Crockett a sellout? And does it matter?

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    In this episode of History Club, Vox’s Phil Edwards asks Coleman Lowndes a question: Was this American legend really as great as he was cracked up to be?

    Davy Crockett’s become an American tall tale, but he was a real person and member of Congress. That’s where things get complicated. His incredible feats of bear-killing and frontier exploring intersected with a political career that was catalyzed by central banking.

    When Crockett was alive, Andrew Jackson was president, and Jackson was embroiled in a battle over the Second Bank of the United States. That battle eventually resulted in the creation of a new political party — the Whigs — and the Whigs decided Crockett could help advance their cause.

    In a strange way, it’s possible to trace the American icon and baby boomer fad back to this banking battle. And it says something about celebrity, politics, and how Americans imagine their history.

    If you want to read more about Davy Crockett, check out:

    The Autobiography of Davy Crockett by David Crockett: It’s folksy, occasionally true, and free.

    David Crockett: The Man and the Legend by James Shackford: This meticulously researched biography is a precise look at the legend’s life.

    Portraying an American Original: The Likenesses of Davy Crockett by Frederick Voss: I first encountered this essay in David Lofaro’s anthology of David Crockett history, but it’s a bit hard to find online. You can read this neat art history essay online. is a news website that helps you cut through the noise and understand what's really driving the events in the headlines. Check out

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Comments • 1 167

  • SuperKing604
    SuperKing604  2 weeks back

    Go with asia, india and china have tons of great stories

    • Pro_In_TrainingYT
      Pro_In_TrainingYT  3 weeks back

      I’m bad at history but when we’re jelly cubes made?

      • Blue Jedi
        Blue Jedi  3 weeks back

        So...Davy Crockett was the Trump of his time?

        • Kj Botha
          Kj Botha  3 weeks back


          • thelinedrive
            thelinedrive  3 weeks back

            South America for the next history club.

            • johncocktosensen
              johncocktosensen  3 weeks back


              • gary robinson
                gary robinson  4 weeks back


                • gary robinson
                  gary robinson  4 weeks back

                  He was trying to make money and didn’t think the bank issue really mattered. By the way I love Davy Crockett and believe in getting rid of the federal reserve.

                  • 9 vanilla
                    9 vanilla  4 weeks back

                    I learned nothing

                    • Tijan
                      Tijan  4 weeks back

                      Apologist much?? Squatters, land bill. It’s all about a land grab from natives.

                      • David Wright
                        David Wright  4 weeks back

                        AFRICA - MANSA MUSA. The wealthiest man of all time.

                        • fortunatejeremy
                          fortunatejeremy  4 weeks back

                          I feel like this video ended abruptly. Could have been twice as long.

                          • Victoria Shangina
                            Victoria Shangina  1 months back

                            Australia, because most of the history books and YT channels are very Europe-centered.

                            • Lemmy Wings
                              Lemmy Wings  1 months back

                              Davy Crockett’s Da comes from Donemana

                              • Anthony Ghandour
                                Anthony Ghandour  1 months back


                                • Peter Kelley
                                  Peter Kelley  1 months back

                                  Australia. There is some interesting history to look at. Suggestions: Ned Kelly; the Eureka Stockade; the selection of Canberra as the national capital; the Gallipoli campaign in the first world eat and the ANZAC legend

                                  • kung Few
                                    kung Few  2 months back

                                    Sadly, Davy Crockett was mauled to death by a raccoon on the way home from a bear hunt. 🐾

                                    • MrTacticalinuit
                                      MrTacticalinuit  2 months back

                                      A story from the continent whom'st rains we bless.

                                      • Simone Herbert
                                        Simone Herbert  2 months back

                                        Would this be a place to request an episode on the origins of why there are feminine and masculine words? (i.e the Spanish and French languages)

                                        • R YAY
                                          R YAY  2 months back


                                          • Marshall Rojas
                                            Marshall Rojas  2 months back


                                            • Tired Vamp
                                              Tired Vamp  2 months back

                                              You should do one of these on olive oatman

                                              • Kayla Robinson
                                                Kayla Robinson  2 months back

                                                South Africa. We own some islands way down south and weird things happened with cats down there.

                                                • Cheyenne Warner
                                                  Cheyenne Warner  2 months back


                                                  • Gerbil Mom
                                                    Gerbil Mom  2 months back

                                                    Remember the Alamo 🤠🤠🤠

                                                    • atranos tekeste
                                                      atranos tekeste  2 months back

                                                      Pick Africa, maybe on how the Ethiopians fought off more military equipped Italians

                                                      • Juan Valdez
                                                        Juan Valdez  2 months back

                                                        Jackson is the real legend for ending the central bank, we need another Andrew Jackson

                                                        • Gerbil Mom
                                                          Gerbil Mom  2 months back

                                                          Juan Valdez um I believe you have forgotten about the trail to tears

                                                      • Niamh C
                                                        Niamh C  2 months back

                                                        I’m European and I’ve never heard of Davy Crockett in my life

                                                        • William Copps
                                                          William Copps  2 months back


                                                          • JustinJun
                                                            JustinJun  2 months back

                                                            I keep rewinding before Disney came into play at 10:10... what was “the myth that trickled in a little bit longer”?

                                                            • Steven
                                                              Steven  2 months back

                                                              Guy on the right is somewhere between 18 and 60

                                                              • Isaac White
                                                                Isaac White  2 months back

                                                                David Crockett is my hero so I consume any material about him. As soon as your video came up in my recommended feed I clicked.

                                                                • emily mitchell
                                                                  emily mitchell  2 months back


                                                                  • IJ Piano
                                                                    IJ Piano  2 months back

                                                                    Let it be subcontinent because it is so rich in cultural diversity that it will be surely great thing to hear from you guys. And if you need help then I will be available.

                                                                    • Woodly Saint Julien
                                                                      Woodly Saint Julien  2 months back

                                                                      Please do Africa

                                                                      • Shoegum
                                                                        Shoegum  2 months back

                                                                        Those awkward edits of him saying one word

                                                                        • The Hiking gamer
                                                                          The Hiking gamer  2 months back

                                                                          "Davyyyyyy, Daaaa-vy Crockett, l'homme qui n'a ja-mais peuuuuur" 🎼

                                                                          • oneofthethreerolypolyjays

                                                                            ripping off Do Go On podcast but okay

                                                                            • Liz Alexander
                                                                              Liz Alexander  2 months back

                                                                              Davey Crockett is my 7th great grandfather and this taught me a lot about him

                                                                              • Retail Mammal
                                                                                Retail Mammal  2 months back

                                                                                Andrew Jackson
                                                                                “You secede from my country and I secede your head from the rest of your body”

                                                                                • Pailie Longston
                                                                                  Pailie Longston  2 months back

                                                                                  You should do Africa next

                                                                                  • Nelzo
                                                                                    Nelzo  2 months back

                                                                                    Africa, there are lots of stories. In fact, there are great, "untold" stories from Africa of heroism. Mostly overlooked because its Africa, and a perception that nothing great or inspiring comes from Africa.

                                                                                    There is rich history from Africa which can keep a club busy, retelling the stories to us, philomath.

                                                                                    If there is help needed with research, let us know.

                                                                                    • Josh Mansker
                                                                                      Josh Mansker  2 months back

                                                                                      Davy Crockett hated Andrew Jackson? I like him already!

                                                                                      • Jacob Brien
                                                                                        Jacob Brien  2 months back


                                                                                        • Cupcake for All
                                                                                          Cupcake for All  2 months back


                                                                                          • Dan Cristinzio
                                                                                            Dan Cristinzio  2 months back


                                                                                            • Alan Cruz
                                                                                              Alan Cruz  2 months back

                                                                                              Andrew Jackson yup yup yup.......also a huge fuxking racist

                                                                                              • Shona Ngava Fitness
                                                                                                Shona Ngava Fitness  2 months back

                                                                                                Okay YouTube, I finally watched this my life will be full of success from now.