Tag Archives: folk hero

today’s holiday: Antigua National Heroes Day

Antigua National Heroes Day

Antigua has four citizens who have been designated as National Heroes, and December 9 is a public holiday to honor and celebrate all of them. The date is the birthday of one of the four, Sir Vere Cornwall Bird, the first prime minister of Antigua, who is considered the father of the nation. The others are King Court, who led a slave revolt in 1736; Dame Ellen Georgian Nellie Robinson, a pioneer in education; and Sir Vivian Richards, one of the world’s greatest cricket players. Speeches and ceremonies honor the accomplishments of the National Heroes on this day. More… Discuss

today’s birthday: Davy Crockett (1786)

Davy Crockett (1786)

Crockett was a celebrated 19th-century American folk hero, frontiersman, soldier, and politician. After serving in the War of 1812, Crockett was elected to the Tennessee legislature and later won three terms in the US House of Representatives. Though his dress, language, and backwoods wit gained him popularity, he failed to win reelection in 1835 and left for Texas, where he died at the age of 49 in the Battle of the Alamo. What caused a resurgence in Crockett’s popularity in the 1950s? More… Discuss

this day in the yesteryear: Ned Kelly Is Captured (1880)

Ned Kelly Is Captured (1880)

Ned Kelly is Australia‘s most famous bushranger and, to many, a folk hero who defied colonial authorities. Ned’s trouble with the law began when he was just a teen, and what started as minor scrapes with authorities escalated into more serious crimes, including the bank robberies and murders that eventually led to his execution. Despite Kelly’s misdeeds, many believe that he and his family were unfairly targeted by police. In its last stand, the Kelly gang utilized “body armor” made out of what? More… Discuss

Today’s Birthday: JOHNNY APPLESEED (1774)

Johnny Appleseed (1774)

Born John Chapman, Johnny Appleseed was an American folk hero known for planting apple trees. Around 1800, he traveled from Pennsylvania, where he had sold or given saplings and apple seeds to families migrating westward, to present-day Ohio, sewing apple seeds as he went. For more than 40 years, he continued to wander up and down Ohio, Indiana, and Pennsylvania, pruning and caring for his forest nurseries and helping hundreds of settlers to establish orchards. Do any of his trees still exist? More… Discuss



Bampfylde Moore Carew, King of the Beggars

Carew was an English rogue and vagabond who became a folk hero after The Life and Adventures of Bampfylde Moore Carew was published in 1745. The book portrayed him as a roaming trickster who lived off the money he made deceiving the wealthy. Carew’s ruses included claiming alms as a shipwrecked sailor, dressing as an old woman, posing as a rat-catcher, and faking smallpox. Carew claimed to have been elected “King of the Beggars” by members of what group after the death of their leader? More… Discuss


Today’s Birthday: OWEN WISTER (1860)

Owen Wister (1860)

Wister was an American author who is best remembered for his contributions to western fiction. A well-to-do Harvard graduate, he suffered from ill health and summered in the American West, where he gained much inspiration for his writings. His popular 1902 novelThe Virginian is regarded as the first western. It tells the tale of a cattle rancher who depends on a harsh code of ethics, and it helped establish the cowboy as an American folk hero. To whom is the book dedicated? More… Discuss


Casey Jones Dies on the Cannonball Express(1900)

Jones was an American locomotive engineer whose main claim to fame, until his fateful run on the Cannonball Express, was his punctuality. On April 30, 1900, he was driving the Cannonball Express south on a dangerous, accident-prone run when he suddenly saw a stalled freight train ahead. Instead of jumping to safety, he stayed to slow his train, saving his coworkers and passengers but losing his own life in the process. Who wrote the ballad that immortalized him as a folk heroMore… Discuss