David Crockett and Martín and Patricia de León

Portrait of David Crockett

David Crockett
When David Crockett (he never liked the name, “Davy”) rode into the Alamo, he was among the most recognized men in North America. Citizens chuckled at his home-spun yarns, marveled at his hunting abilities, and argued his politics. He went to Congress as one of Andrew Jackson’s “common men,” but once there turned against the president’s Indian policy. “Old Hickory” swore to destroy Crockett—and he did. Trounced in what he considered a rigged election, Crockett told his constituents they could “go to hell, and I would go to Texas.” And he did. Already celebrated, in death he became legend.

Portrait of Martin de Léon

Martín and Patricia de León
The de León’s were the original Tejano power couple. Married in 1795, they founded the Victoria Colony in 1824 and launched a cattle empire. Indeed, local Indians called Martín, "Capitán Vacas Muchas" ("Captain Plenty of Cows"). In 1833, Martin died, leaving Patricia, four sons, six daughters, and an estate worth half a million dollars. Doña Patricia struggled to preserve her family amid the turmoil of the Texas Revolution. Following the war, mounting ethnic tensions forced her into exile in Louisiana. She returned to Victoria in 1844 and died in 1849. De León descendants still live in South Texas.