In competition between 3rd-5th graders across Texas, Asher Wells, Linden Kildare ISD, son of Kerry and Erin Wells, placed second for his essay on “Sam Houston”.
He went from runaway teen to war hero. There were so many interesting events in the life of Sam Houston including having the Capital of the Republic of Texas located in the city named after him before being moved to Austin. He was likely the only politician to join an Indian tribe, direct destruction of the Alamo and “caned” a Congressman.
Houston was born in Rockbridge County, Virginia March 2, 1793. When his father died his mother took the family to live on a farm. Houston decided life with the Cherokee Indians sounded better. He was adopted by Chief Oo-Loo-Te-Ka who named him “The Raven.”
Houston joined the Army at the Battle of Horseshoe Bend in the War of 1812 where he was badly injured twice. His bravery caught the eye of General Andrew Jackson. From there he was nominated by Andrew Jackson’s Democratic Party for the U.S. House of Representatives. He won the election with one hundred percent of the votes. Later he was elected Governor of Tennessee even though he injured a General in a duel.
Legend says Houston was six foot six and he didn’t let anyone mess with him, so when he got word that a Congressman had accused him of fraud in the newspaper, he called him up. They decided to meet on Pennsylvania Ave. in Washington D.C. where he beat the man with a hickory cane. From there he was off to Texas.
He became a Major General in the Texas Army and even ordered James Bowie to blow up the Alamo once. That didn’t happen but Texas declared its independence from Mexico and he now led the army of the Republic of Texas to the Battle of San Jacinto. Even though he was outnumbered he defeated the Mexican army in twenty minutes. In rallying his men to battle, he is quoted as saying “You will remember this battle! Each minute! Each second! Until the day that you die! But that is for tomorrow, gentlemen. For today, Remember the Alamo!”
After gaining freedom from Mexico, Sam Houston was elected President of the Republic of Texas and found time to marry his third wife.
Houston went to see his friend Andrew Jackson after this but arrived at The Hermitage one hour after the President died. “The towering Texan sank to his knees and openly wept over the body,” said one report. Houston had a child he named Andrew Jackson Houston. He returned to Texas and spoke in favor of Texas joining the United States. The state was annexed shortly after this. Next he went to Washington D.C. as a Senator from Texas and kept going until he was Governor of Texas.
As Governor he did not want to go along with Texas leaving the United States before the Civil War so he stepped down. He said, “I love Texas too well to bring civil strife and bloodshed upon Her.”
Houston died of pneumonia in Huntsville, Texas at age seventy. Sam Houston State University was built there in his honor. The impact of this historic man lives on today.
Websites: Samhoustonmemorialmuseum.com/history Wikipedia