The best books to remember the Alamo

Who am I?

Davy Crockett – King of the Wild Frontier on television in the early 1950s directed my attention to the Alamo story. This interest stayed with me over the years and became a life-long quest of research and discovery. I have written five Alamo-related books, many magazine and journal articles, have appeared on a number of panels, and given talks on the subject. I’m a charter member of The Alamo Society and for a number of years served as the editor of the society’s The Alamo Journal. My studies taught me to question many traditional aspects of the Alamo battle – a sometimes dangerous endeavor involving such a legendary event. 


I wrote...

Eyewitness to the Alamo

By Bill Groneman,

Book cover of Eyewitness to the Alamo

What is my book about?

Eyewitness to the Alamo contains over one hundred descriptions by people who witnessed or claimed to have witnessed the Alamo battle. These accounts are the basis for all of the histories, traditions, myths, and legends of this famous battle. Many are conflicting, some are highly suspect as to authenticity, but all are intriguing. I have added explanations as to the origins of these accounts, and to their reliability, leaving the final decision to the reader. Whether they are authentic, questionable, or false all, at one time or another, have been cited as actual descriptions of one of the most remembered battles in American History.

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The books I picked & why

Book cover of Remember the Alamo!

Bill Groneman Why did I love this book?

This book served as the starting point for many present-day Alamo historians. Written by future American Poet Laureate Robert Penn Warren, and enhanced with vivid illustrations by noted Western artist William Moyers, it is the perfect introduction to the Alamo story for young readers. A copy remains on my bookshelf sixty years after its discovery.

By Robert Penn Warren,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Remember the Alamo! as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Remembering the Alamo is a tale of extraordinary courage and riveting adventure. For thirteen days, 189 men lead by Davy Crockett, Colonel William Travis and hopelessly outnumbered, held off the Mexican army lead by General Santa Anna at the Mission San Antonio de Valero-the Alamo. Their valiant sacrifice for the cause of Texas liberty became the rallying cry, "Remember the Alamo!"


Book cover of The Alamo

Bill Groneman Why did I love this book?

The most influential Alamo book of the 1940s, and a major research source for the 1955 Alamo film, The Last Command. It may be one of, if not the first to get away from a legendary telling of the Alamo story. Western writer Myers also focused on the Alamo’s triumvirate, William Barret Travis, James Bowie, and Davy Crockett, as well as their adversary, General Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna, giving insight into their lives and the motivations which brought them together at this battle. Myers’ opening and closing paragraphs may be the best prose of any Alamo book.

By John Myers Myers,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Alamo as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

"The majority of the stories of the Alamo fight have been partly legendary, partly hearsay and at best fragmentary. It has been left to John Myers Myers to present an exhaustively researched book which reveals the chronicle of the siege of the Alamo in an entirely different light. . . . Myers' story will stand as the best that has yet been written on the Alamo. . . . It's a classic." - Boston Post "Here is a historian with the vitality and drive to match his subject. A reporter of the first rank, he can clothe the dry bones…


Book cover of Time to Stand

Bill Groneman Why did I love this book?

Acknowledged by many Alamo historians as the best book on the subject, it is certainly the most readable. Popular historian Walter Lord presented a solid history book written as a novel and brought to light many of the lesser-known personalities and events of the Alamo siege and battle. Lord also included intriguing addendums “Riddles of the Alamo,” “Men who fell at the Alamo,” and a solid list of sources. If other books inspired people to read more about the famous battle, Lord’s book created the desire to plunge deeper into the sources and begin writing about the Alamo. I have a copy of this book, signed by Lord to me, dated March 6, 1991, the 155th anniversary of the Alamo battle.

By Walter Lord,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Time to Stand as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

On the morning of March 6, 1836, in an old abandoned mission called the Alamo, a small Texas garrison fought to the death rather than yield to an overwhelming army of Mexicans. Through the years the garrison's heroic stand has become so clothed in folklore and romance that the truth has nearly been lost. In A Time to Stand Walter Lord rediscovers and recreates the whole fascinating story. From contemporary documents, diaries, and letters, he has mined a wealth of fresh information that throws intriguing sidelights on the epic of the Alamo. What were the defenders like? Why did they…


Book cover of Alamo Traces: New Evidence and New Conclusions

Bill Groneman Why did I love this book?

Good friend, Tom Lindley spent fifteen years researching and piecing together this controversial book, more a collection of stand-alone Alamo-related articles, than a single narrative of the battle. Lindley, known for his “hard chair time” as a researcher dispels many long-standing myths of the Alamo such as Travis drawing his famous line in the sand, the story of Louis Rose, the much-publicized and phony De La Peña “diary,” the number of men who died at the Alamo, and many others. It is not an easy read, but it is absolutely necessary for anyone researching and writing about the Alamo.

By Thomas Ricks Lindley,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Alamo Traces as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Destined to be a controversial history of one of the most popular Americna landmarks, Alamo Traces is Thomas Ricks Lindley's masterpiece. Fifteen years of research makes this critical examination of the Alamo story a volume of historical truth and accuracy. The author burrows deep into the records and shovels away deposits of myth, folklore, and faulty research that are generations deep. Never wavering in its search for the bedrock of fact, this convincing speculation about what might really have happened during that courageous fight for independence.


Book cover of Line of Glory

Bill Groneman Why did I love this book?

There have been many novels written about the Alamo. Friend and fellow member of the Western Writers of America, Tom Clagett, tells his unique story by only presenting the last two days of the siege. On the Texan side we experience the battle through the three Taylor brothers and Susannah Dickinson, and the Mexican side via Colonel Juan Morales, all historical participants. Clagett blends fact, fiction, and myth, holding a reader’s interest throughout. One can’t help but care for the characters and hope for the best, even though there is only one way an Alamo story can end. That is great writing!

By Thomas D. Clagett,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Line of Glory as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The final 13 hours at the Alamo began around 5 o’clock on the afternoon of March 5, 1836. Colonel William Barrett Travis drew a line in the dirt with his sword and asked all those who would stay and fight to cross it. Everyone there knew that General Santa Anna’s final attack on the fort was coming. Hopes, fears and destinies played out that night for four people. Susannah 
Dickinson, a woman of surprising courage, waited inside the chapel 
cradling her baby daughter, while her husband, Captain Almeron Dickinson, commanded the cannon battery atop the chapel. Young James Taylor had…


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By Alexander Rose,

Book cover of The Lion and the Fox: Two Rival Spies and the Secret Plot to Build a Confederate Navy

Alexander Rose Author Of Empires of the Sky: Zeppelins, Airplanes, and Two Men's Epic Duel to Rule the World

New book alert!

Who am I?

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What is my book about?

From the author of Washington’s Spies, the thrilling story of two rival secret agents — one Confederate, the other Union — sent to Britain during the Civil War.

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Their battleground was the Dickensian port of Liverpool, whose dockyards built more ships each year than the rest of the world combined and whose merchant princes, said one observer, were “addicted to Southern proclivities, foreign slave trade, and domestic bribery.”

The Lion and the Fox: Two Rival Spies and the Secret Plot to Build a Confederate Navy

By Alexander Rose,

What is this book about?

From the New York Times bestselling author of Washington's Spies, the thrilling story of the Confederate spy who came to Britain to turn the tide of the Civil War-and the Union agent resolved to stop him.

"Entertaining and deeply researched...with a rich cast of spies, crooks, bent businessmen and drunken sailors...Rose relates the tale with gusto." -The New York Times

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