WOMEN WERE SCARCE
By S. C. Turnbo
It is a difficult matter to get all the names of the early settlers correct. As people grow old they partially lose their recollection and tell some of the names wrong this is not done intentional but the memory of old people grow more faded as they get older. In refering to the old Beller Stand on Crooked Creek 6 miles above Harrison, Ark., Col. S. W. Peel says it was William Beller. Capt. A. S. Wood says it was Peter Beller. It might have been that there were two men named Beller one Peter and the other William. If there Col. Peel and Capt. Wood are both right in giving their name. If there were only one man named Beller and whether his given name be Peter or William one of them is mistaken. Capt. Wood says that Peter Beller arrived on Crooked Creek in the month of May 1833. What makes me think it was Peter that lived at the Beller Stand above Harrison, Ark. Is that one day after I was grown and was married I saw a lady who ask me if I was my fathers youngest child and I answered in the affirmative, and she said "I am Peter Bellers wife. In the month of May 1833 while I and my husband were moving up Crooked Creek from Tennessee we stopped at the first crossing of the creek below Shawnee Town to camp. We stopped in a thick cane brake where a dim road lead through that had been made by the Indians. Soon after we had stopped here a man came along on horse back who said his name was Bill Wood and he told my husband and myself that his wife was confined and that women were so scarce that it was a serious matter to find any to wait on her. He said he had started for Aunt Katie Adams a mid wife but it would be a good while before he could get her there even if she was able to go and says he, "My wife needs help just as soon as assistance can reach her", and he ask me if I would be kind enough to go see her, I told him I would volunteer and go at once if he had any way to take me there. "This horse" said he, "will carry double and I got up on the hub of the hind wheel of my husbands ox wagon and mounted up on the horse behind Mr. Wood and went home with him and waited on his wife until after the child was born and I went back to camp where my husband and children were. The man I went with was your father and his wife was your mother and you are the child that was born in the then wilderness of Crooked Creek."
Springfield-Greene County Library