Watch CBSN Live

Heroes and Desperados

Here are some other giants of American mythology, compiled by Information Please.

Appleseed, Johnny (John Chapman, 1774-1847): Massachusetts-born nurseryman, reputed to have spread seeds and seedlings out of which grew the apple orchards of the Midwest.

Billy the Kid (William H. Bonney, 1859-1881): Desperado who killed his first man before he reached his teens. After a short life of crime in the Wild West, he was gunned down by Sheriff Pat Garrett. He lives on as a symbol of the lawless West.

Boone, Daniel (1734-1820): Frontiersman and Indian fighter about whom legends of early America have been built, he figured in Byron's Don Juan.

Buffalo Bill (William F. Cody, 1846-1917): A buffalo hunter and Indian scout, many of the legends about him stem from his own Wild West show, which he operated in the late 19th century.

Bunyan, Paul: Mythical lumberjack and subject of tall tales throughout timber country, including one that he dug the Grand Canyon.

Crockett, David (1786-1836): Frontiersman, congressman, and defender of the Alamo, his backwoods humor and larger-than-life adventures made him synonymous with the Wild West.

James, Jesse (1847-1882): Bank and train robber, often portrayed as the American Robin Hood.

Jones, Casey (John Luther Jones, 1863-1900): Example of heroic locomotive engineer given to feats of prowess; died in wreck when his Illinois Central "Cannonball" express hit freight train at Vaughan, Miss.

Ross, Betsy (1752-1836): Member of Philadelphia flag-making family. Reported to have designed and sewn first American flag. Report is without confirmation.

Uncle Sam: Personification of the U.S. and its people, his origin is uncertain. He may be based on the inspector of government supplies in the Revolutionary War and War of 1812.


This service is produced by Information Please, a partner of

Graphic design by Tim Hyde

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue