Jason Stanford

#402: Forget the Alamo: The Revisionist History That Built This Texas Brand

#402: Forget the Alamo: The Revisionist History That Built This Texas Brand

Who doesn’t love the legend of Davey Crockett as groomed by Disney? Coonskin cap. Ol’ Betsy, Davy’s rifle that he presumably killed packs of “bahr”.

His bravery at the Alamo.

And what about the American lore of the Alamo itself? For 187 years, the Alamo has represented the fighting fury and independence of long tall Texans everywhere.

But what if the story of the Alamo is just a long tall tale? A complete fabrication?

What if everything you knew about Crockett, Jim Bowie for which the Bowie Knife is named, and Bill Travis, the leader of “The Defenders” is total hooey?

And what does this all mean for your brand story?

Jason Stanford, co-author of Forget the Alamo: The Rise and Fall of an American Myth, corrects revisionist history in his book written with Bryan Burrough and Chris Tomlinson.

Jason’s bylines have appeared in Texas Monthly, the Texas Tribune, Texas Highways, and the Texas Observer, as well as many publications that have nothing whatsoever to do with Texas. Jason also publishes a Substack newsletter called The Experiment.

As former communications director for Austin Mayor Steve Adler, in 2018 he was named by Austin Monthly “Best Man Behind the Curtain.” A former political consultant, Stanford often contributed to the Austin American-Statesman, Politico Magazine, Talking Points Memo, and MSNBC.

From 2011 to 2015, he was a nationally syndicated columnist. During this time, he co-wrote with James Moore Adios, Mofo: Why Rick Perry Will Make America Miss George W. Bush.

Stanford majored in Russian at Lewis & Clark College which led in 1992 to editing the Moscow Guardian, an English-language expatriate tabloid and worked as a researcher for the Los Angeles Times bureau.

Currently, he lives in Dallas where he serves as special assistant to the superintendent of schools at Dallas Independent School District.

In addition to learning why you should forget the Alamo as you currently know it, Jason will reveal some of his tried and true storytelling tips that you can use including…

Discussed in this episode:

  1. Why you should start your stories with an ending and end with a beginning.
  2. The importance of surprising, subverting, and satisfying your audience.
  3. And the need to find the right altitude in your storytelling.
  4. The story behind the true story of The Alamo.
  5. How British rock star Phil Collins amassed a fortune in Alamo artifacts the majority of which are probably fakes or reproductions.
  6. Did you know the state of Texas has earmarked approximately $450,000 for a museum to house Collins’, uh, Alamo “collection”?


Related Episodes You’ll Love:

Your Storytelling Resources:



Connect with me:




Listen To More Episodes