The legendary feats of Davy Crockett, who could tree a ghost, ride his thirty-seven-foot-long alligator up Niagara Falls, and drink up the Mississippi River, are common knowledge to devotees of this nineteenth-century comic superhero. But what may come as a surprise to many is that the legendary frontiersman also served as the fictional narrator of a collection of outrageous tall tales about women in the same Crocket Almanacs in which he “recorded” his own adventures. Conceived as a marketing device by nineteenth-century publishers hoping to gain a share of the lucrative almanac market, such stories made these slim volumes the best-selling and longest-running series of comic almanacs published in the United States before the Civil War. Booking back at them now, the Crocket Almanacs offer a true “fun house mirror” view of the culture of antebellum America.
Michael Lofaro has published numerous works on frontier America including The Life and Adventures of Daniel Boone. He has also published three other books on Crockett with the University of Tennessee Press, including Davy Crockett: The Man, The Legend, The Legacy 1786-1986; Crocket at Two Hundred; and The Tall Tales of Davy Crockett: The Second Nashville Series of Crockett Almanacs 1839-1841. He is a professor of English at the University of Tennessee at Knoxville.