Alamo Book Report

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Book Report 11/20/13 A Debate on History: Are You Sure You Know the Truth? The book I chose for my report is Sleuthing the Alamo: Davy Crockett’s Last Stand and Other Mysteries of the Texas Revolution by James E. Crisp. In my book, Crisp follows the Texas Revolution along with the battle at the Alamo which took place between 1835 and 1836. He tackles the questions of why and how myths are made and shows how the environment around someone can influence attitudes that people develop about certain historical events. Crisp also challenges are beliefs of history and wants us to realize that just because it’s in a history book doesn’t mean that it’s 100% accurate. Instead, we should judge history just like any other subject and read the facts for ourselves and come up with our own conclusion on whether or not we believe the story. His main thesis is that each person’s background and upbringing can greatly change how they view one historical event compared to the next person. Crisp begins his analysis with his own life story that began in a small town in southern Texas. Crisp tells of the racism and segregation that happened in his small town and even in college at Rice University, which I believe influences some of his opinions in this book. Crisp also talks of how important legends were in his upbringing as a child. He also says that sometimes we are taught legends in school, even though the actual real history might not even be close to the legend. He does say he would rather know the true historical facts, rather than believe a legend that isn’t true. He even goes on to say that he was disappointed when he found the truth of Davy Crockett’s end; however he was glad to finally know the real truth of how his end came. Crisp starts his historical analysis out with the topic of the speech made by Sam Houston to his troops regarding Native

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