My reality took a major hit when I learned of a book that reveals the famous battle at the Alamo in Texas was not what Walt Disney had broadcasted on TV, but was a nefarious cover up of an expansion of slavery in the Lone Star State.
Santa Anna’s Mexican troops were trying to stamp out slavery in its territory and the 180 persons fighting at the old Spanish mission in San Antonio were trying to not only retain slavery, but make it grow for the production of cotton.
The authors of “Forget the Alamo – the Rise and Fall of an American Myth” were scheduled to speak at a conference in Austin this week when Texas Governor Greg Abbott forced the gathering to be cancelled. He might have quashed it because the book focuses on the history of Texas and how slavery was part of its birth and was included in the original state constitution.
The Mexicans opposed slavery after having fought against the imperial government of Spain and our southern neighbors had banned it outright in 1829. Texans in the mid 1830’s, however, wanted it to grow particularly after the invention of the Cotton Gin that made it immensely profitable for slaves to harvest the crops for their owners.
The fight at the Alamo was not about patriots fighting against oppression by a foreign power.
It was over slavery.
Plain and simple.
Davy Crockett, Jim Bowie and William T Travis – heroes portrayed in the 1955 Disney television series – fought for and were on the wrong side of history. The real life stories mentioned in the book are unflattering and somewhat despicable to say the least.
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I wanted to kick somebody or tear up something when I learned of the history. And I would have if I still owned the little boy’s coonskin hat or buckskin jacket I had when I was seven or eight-years-old. I would have cracked open the toy model of Davy Crockett’s rifle called “Betsy,” which he was portrayed as swinging at the Mexican soldiers at the end of the 13-day siege at the Alamo. Crockett, my childhood hero, may not have gone down swinging as shown on telelvision, but may have actually been captured or surrendered and executed after the battle, according to the book.
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The Alamo was immediately scratched from my bucket list of places to visit before I die. Upon reflection, I felt sorry for the kid still inside of me who was so easily duped into believing such a make-believe story. “The king of the wild frontier . . . ,” “Killed him a bo’ar when he was only three . . “
I know the truth will set me free and help me overcome any and all of these deceptions in life. And my heart will be prepared for it in the future now.