Often overshadowed by his older and widely praised brother, Davy, Randy Crockett enjoyed a successful career as both a frontiersman and the nation’s first wilderness dentist. Most Oral Historians agree his impact on the Veterinary dentistry field was substantial.
The younger Crockett, who settled in Coma in 1827, built a successful animal dentistry practice and is credited with using his ax to remove plaque and tartar build-up. Although this technique fell out of favor due to high patient mortality rates, Crockett was viewed by many as a pioneer in pushing the science of Veterinary dentistry forward.
Crockett lived in Coma from 1827 until 1835. In that time, he performed more than three dozen successful root canals on a range of animals including pigs, donkeys, coyotes and a small family of chipmunks.
Crockett, who struggled to earn money from his dental practice, as most clients were not in a position to afford care, left Coma in 1835 and went on to open a first-of-its-kind drive thru restaurant, which offered salt pork, a variety of root vegetables and maple syrup brought to you while you waited in your Conestoga wagon.
Stan Bargemeyer is a local historian and Coma News Intern