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Database: Daniel Boone

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B. 1734

Daniel Boone was a hunter and trapper, who, through skill and luck, went on to become a near-myth in stories about the American frontier.
Boone was born in Pennsylvania, but moved with his family to North Carolina in 1752. He travelled to the frontier frequently on hunting and trapping expeditions, across modern-day North Carolina, Florida, and into Kentucky - the list goes on, but I'll stop it there, because it's just a list of places, and that can be quite tedious. Boone is sometimes credited with 'discovering' Kentucky - which is ridiculous as I'm fairly sure someone else must have seen it once - but he did have a major role in its colonization by Europeans. In 1773, Boone headed for the interior of Kentucky with a group of settlers with the intention of starting a town. Now, the Kentucky interior had technically been ceded to the British after the treaty of Stanwix, but not al of the Indigenous residents agreed with the treaty - or the incursion onto their traditional lands. Boone's group hadn't gone far when the party was attacked. Boone's son was captured and tortured to death - and the Colonists left.

However, Boone went back in 1775, when he was hired by the Transylvania Company to blaze a trail to the interior, known as the "Wilderness Trail". Boone settled in the area, founding the town of Boonesborough - arrogant - which he later helped to save from attack by Shawnee warriors in the opening years of the revolution.

Boone was made famous in his later years not so much by his adventures (though he had many, which I'm sure he'll tell you about), but by books written about his life - some of which contained - let's just call them historical inaccuracies. The one where he wrestled a sixty-foot Man-fish comes to mind. In reality Boone wasn't one to embellish his experiences - which may be why people felt the need to do it for him.

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