HE SUPPOSED IT WAS A MULY COW
By S. C. Turnbo
When Jess Bias settled on Shoal Creek in Taney County, Mo.) his son Hiram Bias was 11 years old. Hiram had killed deer but he had never met a bear. Hiram settled on the creek in 1832 and the land he settled on was afterward known as the Lewis Herrean place and is where Capt. C. C. Owen lived when he come to Taney County in 1870. This land is 1 ½ miles south of the present town of Protem. a few days after Mr. Bias settled on this land the dogs sprang at a wild beast that had approached near the house and after a hot chase of a half a mile down the creek the dogs treed it. Jess was gone but Hiram took the rifle and went down to where the dogs were treed and saw a big black beast that resembled a black muly cow sitting in the fork of a large burr oak tree. He reached the conclusion that it was a cow and was puzzled to know how it got up in the tree. He had never know before that cattle could climb trees and made up his mind that he would kill her for she had no business in going up a tree. He aimed between the eyes and pulled the triggers and when the report of the gun rang out and the beast fell to the ground, the dogs made such a racket over the dying animal that Hiram was seized with terror and flea to the house and did not tell his mother about it, for he fully believed he had shot a muly cow and was ashamed to let it be know. But two days afterward he told his father about it and Jess took him and went to the tree to see what it was and found that Hiram had killed a big bear and scolded him for not telling it sooner for the meat and hide was spoiled.
Springfield-Greene County Library