Lt. James Butler Bonham was a hero of the Mexican War, who bravely sacrificed his life in the defense of the Alamo from the Mexican Army. Bonham was born near the present-day town of Saluda, South Carolina, and attended South Carolina College. He studied law and practiced in Pendleton, S.C. Bonham moved to Alabama and then to Texas where he was commissioned a second lieutenant in the Texas cavalry. He left the Alamo twice during the seige by the Mexican Army in a futile attempt to secure reinforcements. Knowing the situation was hopeless, he returned through enemy fire to join the defenders of the Alamo. He died on March 6, 1836, defending the fort.