Profiles in Courage: Season 1, Episode 5

Sam Houston (13 Dec. 1964)

TV Episode  -   -  Biography | Drama | History
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Doc
Noah Keen ...
Throckmorton
...
Margaret
...
Rogers
Christopher Riordan ...
Wounded Soldier
...
Lt. Gov. Edward Clark
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13 December 1964 (USA)  »

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1.33 : 1
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The Fire In His Aged Heart
29 March 2007 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

One of my favorite characters of American history is Sam Houston who certainly participated in enough of it in his life from 1793 to 1863. This episode of Profiles In Courage concerns the last great endeavor he tried, a valiant effort to keep his beloved Texas in the Union.

After a long career which included a stint in Congress from Tennessee, Governor of that State, two terms as president of the Republic of Texas and 13 years in the United States Senate upon Texas's admission to the union, Houston was defeated for re-election to the Senate as a younger more southern oriented politician came to dominate the politics of Texas.

But in 1859 he got elected Governor of Texas in one last try for office. He watched as secession feeling grew in his state and struggled valiantly against it.

Houston had devoted his life to the United States of America and to bringing Texas into it. It tore him up plenty to see what was happening to his country and his state. Though his life was almost over he spit defiance at those who would tear his country up no matter how numerous they were. When the legislature voted to secede, Houston was removed from office when he refused to take the oath of allegiance to the Confederacy.

His term as governor was almost up anyway when Warren Stevens as the Confederate leaning Lieutenant Governor Edward Clark served a matter of weeks as Texas's chief executive. The loss was not political since his career was pretty much over, but that he died shunned mostly by the people he devoted his life to.

The episode casts a late thirty something J.D. Cannon made up heavily as the almost seventy year old Houston. Cannon does not have the height to play Houston, Sam Houston was well over six feet tall, but the fire is definitely there.

I did like the domestic scenes with Peggy McCay as Margaret Lea Houston. She was Houston's second wife and the mother of his many children, the last of whom was born the year he was removed as governor in 1861. She was many years his junior and came from an Alabama plantation gentry family. By all accounts she was devoted to her husband and her large brood of children.

Hopefully one day this and others from The Profiles in Courage series will be broadcast again. These episodes have never been seen since their original broadcast in 1964.


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