Most people know Davy Crockett as the frontiersman who wore a dumb raccoon hat, but don’t know much else about him. Yet there was so much more to the “King of the Wild Frontier” than just that.
These facts about Davy Crockett should shed some light on an American legend.
1. He wore his raccoon-skin cap as a warning to other raccoons not to climb on his head while he was sleeping.
Being the rugged type, Crockett loved to camp outside. He also loved to explore the wilderness and, as anyone who also appreciates the great outdoors will tell you, when you explore outside, you often get berries stuck in your hair as you crawl through bushes. Combine this with camping, and you’re going to wake up with some raccoons scavenging for a meal from your head.
When his friends saw Crockett with a raccoon in his hair for the first time, they laughed and said, “Look, look! This raccoon has bested Davy Crockett!” Crockett killed the raccoon and turned it into a hat to send a message to other raccoons that he is not one to be fucked with. Crockett’s friends then changed their stance and declared, “No, it is Davy Crockett who has bested the raccoon.”
There is no record of a raccoon trying to climb into his hair ever again.
2. The phrase, “Everything is bigger in Texas” comes from the time Crockett uttered the words when he saw a horse in Texas and mistook it for a large dog.
Crockett left Tennessee and spent only three months in Texas before his death. When he first arrived in the Lone Star State, he saw the horse in question and coined the now infamous phrase.
A stable boy tried to explain that it was a horse, not a dog, but this infuriated Crockett. He then tried to get the horse to play fetch in an attempt to prove that it was a dog, but when he threw a stick and the horse did not chase it, Crockett’s demeanor changed, likely having realized his mistake.
According to historians, Crockett tried to convince the stable boy that he knew it was a horse the whole time and was just joking, but the stable boy was pretty sure he was just lying to cover up his embarrassment.
3. Crockett never killed a bear unless he thought it was a werewolf.
While it is true that Crockett sometimes used bear hunting as his source of income, this fact leaves out one key detail; he was actually hunting for werewolves and mistook bears for them every single time he killed one.
While some historians have labeled him a bear hunter since he never technically killed a werewolf, it is perhaps more accurate to call him a very bad werewolf hunter instead.
4. Failing to grasp the serious nature of the conflict, Crockett believed that the disagreement between Texas and Mexico at the Alamo could be resolved the same way he and his friends at sleepaway camp settled their disputes with their rival camp when he was a boy: through pranks.
On many occasions, William Travis and Jim Bowie tried to explain to Crockett that Mexico was extremely mad at Texas and wouldn't find a prank funny, but Crockett just shook his head and kept saying, “Clearly you two have never been to sleepaway camp. Trust me, this is how we settle things.”
Tragically, Crockett was killed after being caught inside General Antonio López de Santa Anna’s camp, trying to put the Mexican troops’ hands in warm water while they slept.
5. After Andrew Jackson made fun of him by calling him “Baby Crockett,” Crockett sponsored the “Let Davy Crockett Slap Some Sense into the Disrespectful President of the United States, the Coward, Andrew Jackson” bill.
Crockett and Jackson had a historically cantankerous relationship after Crockett fiercely opposed President Jackson’s Indian Removal Act while he was in Congress. Tensions came to a head when Jackson called Crockett this insult in front of the entire Congressional body.
Though he was unable to come up with a clever comeback on the spot, after spending several weeks trying to think of one, Crockett came up with the idea for the bill. The “Slap POTUS Bill,” as it became colloquially known, made it through Congress, but ultimately it did not make it past the Senate.