Iycee Charles de Gaulle Summary D. Crockett & W. Travis: Heroes or Cowards? Essay

D. Crockett & W. Travis: Heroes or Cowards? Essay

De La Pena begins his personal narrative by detailing the beginnings of the battle of the Alamo in Texas. Wishing to see how weak the Alamo and its defenders had become under William B. Travis, De la Pena states how many troops were sent by Santa Anna in order to bring it down, which he describes as over “Four Columns” or over a thousand troops. His depiction of how many died during the battle, of how many surrendered, and how exactly the battle went down, not only contradict history, but contradict logic and knowledge as well as anything.

Luckily, Hardin does a bit of a better job depicting history, even though he uses De la Pena’s quotes as well. Towards the end of his narrative, De la Pena gives the story of how over a dozen soldiers, including Davy Crockett, had surrendered the battle. Santa Anna had given the order that no prisoners were to be taken and orders there execution almost immediately. Likewise, Hardin tells us that this was the same case, and that Crockett and a few others surrendered and were slaughtered by Santa Anna’s troops who were wishing to please him.

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However, both authors describe the actions of Davy Crockett differently from one another. While De la Pena acknowledges that Crockett and his soldiers did not falter or show any cowardice, Hardin gives examples of how Crockett was indeed a hero until the end, even giving the reader examples of how Crockett would fight for anything he believes in no matter the consequences, such as his argument of the Indian Bill by Andrew Jackson.

Even in the face of criticism, he stood his stand and never changed it. William B. Travis’s death however, is depicted reversely from Davy Crockett as De la Pena goes more in detail about his death than Hardin. Hardin briefly states that Travis fell at the very beginning of the battle, by a slug battle shot into his forehead. De la Pena however states that Travis fought like “a true soldier…he died after having traded his life very dearly. None of his men died with greater heroism, and they all died. Both authors give Travis the respect he deserves for having fought and died in battle, yet De la Pena, having been there and witnessed the death in person, gives one the perception to understand just how valiant his efforts and death really were. Both Hardin and De la Pena, agree with the deaths of both Crockett and Travis, being after and during the battle, respectively. Yet, for some reason, Hardin gives a greater amount of attention to the death of Crockett and De la Pena speaks more of the one of Travis.