reached his house, and, under ordinary circumstances, should have gone early to bed, I kept up until midnight, talking about the principles and affairs of government, and got more real, true knowledge of them than I had got all my life before. I have known and seen much of him since, for I respect him -- no, that is not the word - I reverence and love him more than any living man, and I go to see him two or three times a year; and I will tell you sir, if everyone who professes to be a Christian, lived and acted and enjoyed it as he does, the religion of Christ would take the world by storm.

"But to return to my story. The next morning we went to the barbecue, and, to my surprise, found about a thousand men there. I met a good many whom I had not known before, and they and my friend introduced me around until I had got pretty well acquainted -- at least, they all knew me. In due time notice was given that I would speak to them. They gathered up around a stand that had been erected. I opened my speech by saying:

"Fellow-citizens -I present myself before you today feeling like a new man. My eyes have lately been opened to truths which ignorance or prejudice, or both, had heretofore hidden from my view. I feel that I can today offer you the ability to render you more valuable service than I have ever been able to render before. I am here today more for the purpose of acknowledging my error than to seek your votes. That I should make this acknowledgment is due to myself as well as to you. Whether you will vote for me is a matter for your consideration only. "I went on to tell them about the fire and my vote for the appropriation and then told them why I was satisfied it was wrong. I closed by saying:

"And now, fellow-citizens, it remains only fore to tell you that the most of the speech you have listened to with so much interest was simply a repetition of the arguments by which your neighbor, Mr. Bunce, convinced me of my error.

"It is the best speech I ever made in my life, but he is entitled to the credit for it. And now I hope he is satisfied with his convert and that he will get up here and tell you so.

"He came upon the stand and said: " 'Fellow-citizens -It affords me great pleasure to comply with the request of Colonel Crockett. I have always considered him a thoroughly honest man, and I am satisfied that he will faithfully perform all that he has promised you today.'

"He went down, and there went up from that crowd such a shout for Davy Crockett as his name never called forth before.

"I am not much given to tears, but I was taken with a choking then and felt some big drops rolling down my cheeks. And I tell you now that the remembrance of those few words spoken by such a man, and the honest, hearty shout they produced, is worth more to me than all the reputation I have ever made, or shall ever make, as a member of Congress.

"Now, sir," concluded Crockett, "you know why I made that speech yesterday. There is one thingnow to which I wish to call to your attention. You remember that I proposed to give a week's pay. There are in that House many very wealthy men - men who think nothing of spending a week's pay, or a dozen of them, for a dinner or a wine party when they have something to accomplish by it. Some of those same men made beautiful speeches upon the great debt of gratitude which the country owed the deceased - a debt which could not be paid by money -and the insignificance and worthlessness of money, particularly so insignificance a sum as $10,000, when weighed against the honor of the nation. Yet not one of them responded to my proposition. Money with them is nothing but trash when it is come out of the people. But it is the one great thing for which most of them are striving, and many of them sacrifice honor, integrity, and justice to obtain it." 

David Crockett was born August 17, 1786 at Limestone (Greene County), Tennessee. He died March 06, 1836 as one of the brave Southerners defending the Alamo.

Crockett had settled in Franklin County, Tennessee in 1811. He served in the Creek War under Andrew Jackson. In 1821 and 1823 he was elected to the Tennessee legislature. In 1826 and 1828 he was elected to Congress. He was defeated in 1830 for his outspoken opposition to President Jackson's Indian Bill -  (Click here for page 5 of 5)