The newest episode of The Frontier Partisans Podcast featuring the weird and wild tale of filibuster William Walker is up. You can access it here or on Spotify or on most other podcasting platforms.
Walker was a strange man, and it’s hard to understand what drove him to truly crazy schemes to carve off a personal empire in Mexico or Central America. SPOILER ALERT: It ended badly.
Walker’s brief conquest of Nicaragua was soon overshadowed by the tumult of the American Civil War, and it is scarcely remembered now in the United States — but Central America has not forgotten.
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Just listen to the podcast. Everything about the incident was crazy and so was Walker probably. It was really blackly funny and I laughed a few times than felt guilty because real men died.
About Sonora, one of the plots of Donald Hamilton’s Matt Helm books dealt with an attempt to conquer Sonora for an American colony. It was a filibuster mid-twentieth century. Helm if I remember correctly thinks the entire thing was crazy.
Did any of the filibusters ever work out? I guess you say the Texas Revolution was such, but I can’t think of any ones in American history.
Great opening with one of my favorite T. E. Lawrence quotes. I only vaguely knew about Walkers misadventures, and wasn’t aware of the great cost in human lives that resulted from his delusions. Great podcast!
Thank you sir!
I have written a song titled “Dreamer of the Day” off of that quote…
Aaron Yetter says
Don’t forget about the Ed Harris movie. Cinema gold.
Right? Coincidentally, there’s supposed to be a Criterion release this very month of that cinematic masterpiece, so we can sit in our own homes and say “what the hell am I watching?”
Reese Crawford says
I wonder if he’s of any relation to Samuel Walker of Texas ranger fame.
Never saw anything that indicated that — wondered myself. As far as I know, there’s no connection either with my buddy Greg Walker, who had his own adventures in Central America once upon a time…
You know, my maternal grandmother’s maiden was also Walker and I was wondering if I was related. After listening to the podcast I’m not sure I want to be though.
John M Roberts says
There’s also Walker, Texas Ranger, and the greatest Walker of them all: Lee Marvin in “Point Blank” (1967.
You know, I had copy of “Point Blank” that I somehow loss without viewing. Of course, I have read the Hunter.
Stanley Wheeler says
“SPOILER ALERT: It ended badly.”
That made me laugh out loud. Good thing I wasn’t drinking anything or my screen would have got a shower.
SM Stirling–in his ‘Island in the Sea of Time’ series–named his opportunistic, empire-building freebooter ‘William Walker’. A true student of history, I’m sure he had THIS Walker in mind. However, as with any good fictional character–and it is borne out by various hints in the novels–SMS also had William the Conqueror and his Viking ancestor, Hrolf ‘The Ganger’ (Walker) in mind.