The Turnbo Manuscripts

by Silas Claiborne Turnbo

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By S. C. Turnbo

Among my collection of wolf stories is one given me by Pew C. Anderson who lived on the right bank of White River in Franklin township in Marion County, Ark. Mr. Anderson was a good neighbor and citizen and a truthful man. I remember when I was a small lad he would tell me funny incidents relating to wolves and other wild beasts which he encountered after settling on White River at the mouth of "Open" Hollow. Here is the story. "The account I am going to give you," said he, "happened shortly after I had settled in the river bottom at the mouth of Open Hollow. One day I killed a beef and after I and wife had salted the meat I concluded to go out and hunt my horses which were on the range. It was late in the afternoon. I never took time to change my clothes and was afoot. Thinking that the horses were somewhere in the Open Hollow I walked up it and thought I would soon find them, but I was disappointed. I continued on up the hollow until I had reached the head drain of it and turned to the right toward the river bluff when a small pack of wolves scenting my bloody clothes ran me up a post oak tree. Some of the wolves sat under the tree and looked up at me like dogs. You may understand that I wanted to be at home, I sure did. I wanted to be there just then worse than I wanted to hunt horses. They seemed to dare me to come down out of the tree, but I was very cautious about accepting dares from them just then. I waited in a very restless manner for them to leave, but the wolves acted as my bodyguard until just before dark when the pack seemed to grow tired of waiting for me to come down and went away. I waited until they passed from view, then I slid down and ran down the hollow all the way home. My wife was becoming a little uneasy about my staying so long and met me at the door and seeing I was almost out of breath and said, "Pew, what are you so scared about?" "Oh. nothing," I replied, "except that a lot of wolves have been training me how to climb a tree," and said she, "It seems like they have been teaching you how to run as well as climb." And here the argument was closed," said Mr. Anderson.

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