Volume 2, Number 4, Summer 1965
I remember the 1951 Centennial very well. I was living at the mouth of Jakies Creek on White River. I attended all the celebration. Talk about fun, we had plenty of it. Ill never forget some of the incidents that happened.
I suppose, Mary Scott Hair remembers Johnathan Davis. He lived near the Bailey Ford above Indian Creek. He was the oldest person to attend the celebration. He was 93 years young. He had several brothers, but I remember only one sister, Baby Davis Lones. She was the best fiddler I ever heard draw a bow across the strings of a fiddle. I have danced many a change while she was furnishing the music. She played one tune that was my favorite. She called it "The Screaming Wild Cat." Believe me, she could make the hair stand up on your head when she drew the bow across the string that made the screaming sound.
The brothers of Johnathan were Tom and Jim. They were editors of the Stone County paper. Tom was a real typesetter of the day. Henry was the youngest of the family. I have saved Jack for the last. He was one of the fun makers for the occasion. One that I will long remember. I do not know the fellows name. He had got so much homespun liquor that he could not walk. Some one took him to Frank Acres wood shop and laid him on some shavings. Jack happened to notice him. It was in August and the flies were thick. Jack got some shavings, put them on the fellow and set them a fire. I happened along, I said, "Jack, youll burn him up." "No," said Jack, "but Ill scare the flies off."
I was not very well acquainted with Judge Henson, though I knew enough about him to know that he was a good and useful man. I was raised at an adjoining farm to his wife. There were two of the girls. Their names were Grace and Mable. I am not sure which one was his wife.
Their brother was Earny. I hauled wood to Mt. Vernon on the running gears of an old two-horse wagon. The coupling pole stuck out behind, about two feet. When Earny and his sisters were in town they would watch for me to start home. The two girls would put Earny on the pole, then they would get on each side and hold him. I would drive slowly so he would not fall off. When we got near their home they would get off and wave good-bye as I hurried the team in a trot. In a few years we sold out and moved to White River. I lost track of my little friends and quit hauling wood. Instead I herded cattle in the hills for ten years.
Ill never forget Doctor Henson. He saved my fathers life. My father had pneumonia in both lungs. Our family doctor did not have the necessary medicine he needed. He told me to go to Galena and get Dr. Henson. I didnt want to leave my father. I put a young man by the name of McColley on the best horse and told him to go to Galena for Dr. Henson; and if Dr. Henson was out of town not to leave word but to see the doctor himself. The Doctor had been to see a patient near town. It was about sun down when he got back. The man told what I had sent him for. The doctor left Galena at sun down and arrived at our ranch about sun up.
The merchant of that day was Drum Craig, general merchandise. Doctor Craig was the druggist. I believe there were two saloons. Louis Hunt was the shoe and harness mender. Jack May had a livery stable where the old bank building is. Taylor was the owner of the stable where the L. O. Stuart automobile supply is.
The old Frame court house stood where the present one is. The jail was in the north corner of the court yard. It is the same old iron jail in the new house.
The lawyers were George Thornberry, Tom Viles, Cartmal Renfrow, and Joe Norman. Joe was the prosecutor. I remember Joe and Renfrow were candidates for the office. Renfrow said if Joe got the office he would leave the country. He did leave and never came back, except to sell his property.
Squire Holt was the Justice of the Peace for twenty years. He was a democrat and was not elected. I doubt that a democrat could have been elected. He was appointed every-so-often. He did many of the marriages. It was told that he would make matches so he could get to perform the marriages. He was a horse-trader along with his office.
Horse trading was a big business. Often they would tie their old trading stock to the pole hitching rack and keep them there all day without any feed or water. About sun down you could see them leaving for home, they would reel one way, the horse the other.
Copyright Ó White River Valley Historical Quarterly
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