The Turnbo Manuscripts

by Silas Claiborne Turnbo

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By S. C. Turnbo

One among the early timers of North Arkansas is Dave Fee who resides at Peel Marion County. His parents Henderson and Margarette (Myers) Fee with four of their children, Jane, Dave, John M. and Ben who was the baby then and Mr. Mike Myers his father in law came from the state of Kentucky to where Buffalo City in Marion County is now on a steam boat in 1851. Dave Fee was born in Breathitt County Kentucky October 25 1847. Daves father was born in 1819. Dave Fee says that his father made a crop in the river bottom where Buffalo City now Is in 1852. He remembers that Jim Laffoon and a Mr. Lin Scott lived in this same bottom at the same time his father did and that his grandfather Miky Myers who was quite an old man died there in the early part of 1853. "Soon after the death of my grandfather’ said Mr. Fee "My father bought an improvement from David. Mr. Tutt who lived on Crooked Creek 1 ½ miles above Yellville and moved onto it and then he went to Batesville which was the nearest land office and entered his land. Here on this farm my mother died at the age of 74 years and was buried in the Fee Grave yard on this land. Later on my brother John M. and my sister Jane died and their bodies received interment in this same cemetery. David M. Tutt was a son in law of Dave Stinnette father of I. C. Stinnette. Tutt’s wife was named Elizabeth. When we first come to Crooked Creek" continued Mr. Fee, "John Estes was running a saloon in Yellville and Isaac Wilson was selling goods. Henry Burch lived on Crooked Creek below Yellville. Peter Shoup who was a blacksmith lived on the creek 2 miles above Yellville." Mr. Fee says that he well remembers Ed. Tunsil the proprietor of a small steam boat with only one chimney to it plying the waters of White River from the Mississippi River to the Buffalo Shoals. In calling over the names of the Weist family who lived in Yellville he said the old mania given name was Adam and that his sons given names were Jim, Wash., Ben, John and Doc. His daughters were Sally, Mary, and Martha. In the war between the states Dave Fee was a Confederate soldier and served in B. F, (Ben) Iveys Co. C. Col. Schnavels Battallion of Cavalry and he also served as Sheriffe of Marion County from 1894 to 1898. Mr. Fee also gives a brief account of Ben Stinnettes freak pig that he possessed in the year 1871. He said that it was a male pig and was spotted in color. Its fore legs were all right but it had no hind legs at all. Mr. Stinnette exhibited the little grunter in Yellville as a show charging the public one dime for a look at it. Paul Ellenburg offered him $25 for the pig but the owner thinking he could make more out of it refused to accept it. Finally Ben got tired of caring for the little two legged creature and put in a hog bed where there was a saw and other pigs overlaid the helpless pig and killed it. Mr. Fee tells of going to school in Yellville when Van Tate taught school in the Weist school house. "But the first school I ever attended" said he "was when Jim Rawlins taught on Crooked Creek a short distance above Yellville some of my school mates who went to this school were Dave and Mary Shoup and three of the Magness children Jim, Dan and Sarah and Ed Railsback, Dan Railsback and their sister Sarah Railsback. The house that Rawlins taught this school in was a small log cabin with dirt floor and the cracks between the logs all open and the gable ends not closed. Split saplings 6 inches wide with legs put in them was what we used for seats."

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