There are actually three rifles that became important in Davy Crockett’s career. The first was a .48 caliber flintlock. It belongs to Joe Swan of Knoxville, Tennessee. He’s been a great help to me in getting this information together for you. Joe’s rifle is currently in the East Tennessee History Center in Knoxville.
For much appreciated service in the Tennessee State Assembly, Crockett’s Lawrence County constituents presented him with a .40-caliber flintlock crafted by James Graham around 1822. Crockett affectionately named this rifle “Old Betsy,” either for his wife or sister. Both were named Betsy. Just before he left for Texas in 1835, he left it with his son John Wesley. Today, it resides in the Alamo Museum collection in San Antonio.
The third rifle, “Pretty Betsy,” a rifle presented to Crockett in 1834 by members of the Whig Party in Philadelphia. Joe is reasonably certain it is a percussion cap rifle. It’s in Houston, Texas today, and the public is not allowed any information. The owner, a Houston attorney who descends from the Crockett family, won’t let anybody see it nor does he answer questions regarding the weapon.
None of these rifles took part in the Battle of the Alamo.
Davy Crockett named his favorite rifle “Old Betsy”. History often confuses “Betsy” with his second rifle, “Pretty Betsy,” given to him by the Whigs upon his re-election in 1834. “Old Betsy” was a gift from the people of Tennessee in 1822. When he went to Texas, he left the “Old Betsy” at his home in Tennessee and took his standard “Betsy” hunting rifle. Though “Betsy” was lost in the Alamo, “Old Betsy” now resides in the Alamo Chapel in San Antonio. Crockett’s first rifle, prior to “Betsy”, is on display at the East Tennessee History Center in Knoxville, Tennessee as is “Pretty Betsy” also reportedly at Knoxville. It was not at the Alamo either.
His first rifle, a .48-caliber flintlock, hasn’t been outside Tennessee since 1806, and now resides in the pioneer collection at the East Tennessee Historical Society Museum in Knoxville. For much appreciated service in the Tennessee State Assembly, Crockett’s Lawrence County constituents presented him with a .40-caliber flintlock crafted by James Graham around 1822.Calling this rifle “Old Betsy”, Crockett used it to kill 125 bears between 1825 and 1834. When he departed for Texas in 1835, Davy left “Old Betsy” with his son, John Wesley. Today, it resides in the Alamo Museum collection in San Antonio.
“Pretty Betsy,” a rifle presented to Crockett in 1834 by the Whigs of Philadelphia, is located at Nashville, Tenn. (Not anymore, its in Houston and the owner, a lawyer who descends from the Crockett family won’t let anybody see it or answer questions about it: Swan) None of these rifles took part in the Alamo fighting in the closing weeks of Crockett’s life.