Brian Kilmeade, co-host of “Fox & Friends,” radio personality and bestselling author, will be in Fredericksburg on Dec. 7 to sign his latest American history book, “Sam Houston & the Alamo Avengers.”
The event takes place at Barnes & Noble at 1220 Carl D. Silver Parkway, from 6-9 p.m.
Kilmeade, who has previously visited Fredericksburg, authored a number of books on the lives and circumstances surrounding those who served under several famous, historic figures.
“If I bring those stories forward, I think people can relate to that more than the human being hall of famers like George Washington, F.D.R., Teddy Roosevelt, the guys on Mount Rushmore,” said Kilmeade.
Previous New York Times bestsellers by Kilmeade include “George Washington’s Secret Six” and “Thomas Jefferson and the Tripoli Pirates.”
Kilmeade’s latest effort takes the reader back to 1836, when the Mexican army killed between 182 and 257 Texians who were trapped inside the former Franciscan mission in San Antonio for 13 days. At that time, Texians were residents of Mexican Texas and later, the Republic of Texas.
Kilmeade said the book centers around the Alamo Avengers, the men who participated before, during and after the battle.
“What they did before and what they did after at the San Jacinto victory, that defines them and what they did in adversity,” said Kilmeade. “Obviously, you die in battle, how they died showed tremendous courage.”
Kilmeade said his latest work includes excerpts from Lt. Col. William Barret Travis, who, at 26 years old, commanded the Republic of Texas at the Battle of the Alamo.
In his “Victory or Death Letter,” penned while under fire at the Alamo, Barret wrote, “The enemy has demanded a surrender at discretion, otherwise, the garrison are to be put to the sword, if the fort is taken. I have answered the demand with a cannon shot, and our flag still waves proudly from the walls.”
“He [Travis] provides a written track of the mindset, and they know they’re nearing death, and you see how well he writes and you see how eloquent he is in the eye of the storm, knowing your days are numbered,” said Kilmeade.
Among those killed at the Alamo along with Travis were American legends James Bowie and Davy Crockett.
Following that battle, a small army of Texians rallied behind General Sam Houston, and just one month later, soundly defeated Gen. Antonio López de Santa Anna at the Battle of San Jacinto, securing the independence of the land their colleagues had died for.
“For the longest time, I thought this was a Texas story and Fox Nation sent me down there to do a story on the Alamo,” said Kilmeade. “The more people I talked to, the more I felt, I’ve got to complete this story, I’ve got to tell people what led up to it, but more importantly, what happened after it, because that’s the story of America.”
Kilmeade said even though his latest work is a history book, it’s exceeding expectations on the bestseller list.
“It’s beating all my other books and it’s number two, only trailing Donald Trump Jr. on the New York Times list,” said Kilmeade.
Kilmeade said the book is about unthinkable victory, and how Americans accomplish it.
“We adjust and we find a way to win, finding a miraculous way to win,” said Kilmeade, who added, “The book even has a happy ending,” referring to the Battle of San Jacinto on April 21, 1836.
“We win the battle, really, in 18 minutes,” he said. “Two hours to total victory.
As for Kilmeade’s stop in Fredericksburg, he feels a personal connection to the city.
“We go to places that have a sense of history and Fredericksburg’s been just great,” said Kilmeade. “We did ‘George Washington’s Secret Six’ there, ‘Andrew Jackson and the Miracle of New Orleans,’ and ‘Thomas Jefferson and the Tripoli Pirates.’ It’s been one of the more supportive areas.”
Kilmeade’s visit to Fredericksburg is a book- signing event only that includes a personalized signature and a photo with the author. Each guest must purchase a ticket in advance, which includes a copy of the new book.
Tickets are available at briankilmeadefredericksburg.eventbrite.com.