Daniel Boone [October 22 (November 2 new style), 1734 – September 26, 1820] was an American pioneer and hunter whose frontier exploits made him one of the first folk heroes of the United States.
Daniel is most famous for his exploration and settlement of what is now the
U.S. state of Kentucky, which was then beyond the western borders of the
Thirteen Colonies. Despite resistance from American Indians, for whom Kentucky
was a traditional hunting ground, in 1775 Daniel blazed the Wilderness Road
through the Cumberland Gap and into Kentucky. There Daniel Boone founded
Boonesborough, one of the first English-speaking settlements beyond the
Appalachian Mountains. Before the end of the 18th century, more than 200,000
people entered Kentucky by following the route marked by Boone.
Daniel was a Militia officer during the American Revolutionary War (1775–1783), which in Kentucky was fought primarily between settlers and British-allied American Indians. Daniel was captured by Shawnees in 1778 and adopted into the tribe, but he escaped and continued to help defend the Kentucky settlements.
Daniel Boone was elected to the first of his three terms in the Virginia
General Assembly during the war, and fought in the Battle of Blue Licks in 1782,
one of the last battles of the American Revolution. Daniel worked as a surveyor
and merchant after the war, but he went deep into debt as a Kentucky land
speculator. Frustrated with legal problems resulting from his land claims, in
1799 Daniel resettled in Missouri, where he spent his final years.
Daniel remains an iconic, if imperfectly remembered, figure in American history.
Daniel Boone was a legend in his own lifetime, especially after an account of his adventures was published in 1784, making him famous in America and Europe.
After his death, Daniel Boone was frequently the subject of tall tales and works of fiction. Daniel Boone's adventures—real and legendary—were influential in creating the archetypal Western hero of American folklore.
In American popular culture, Daniel Boone is remembered as one of the
foremost early frontiersmen, even though the mythology often overshadows the
historical details of his life.
This Daniel Boone Biography Page is Copyright © 2004 - 2009 Chuck Ayoub