The Turnbo Manuscripts

by Silas Claiborne Turnbo

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By S. C. Turnbo

A number of the pioneers enjoyed horse racing and they met frequently for this purpose at designated places. The Bill Adams Farm just above where the town of Pro-tem in Taney County, Mo. now stands was once a noted spot for horse racing on a small scale to be carried on. These races were of a local character and the gathering of citizens to witness the race was not very large and the betting was not very strong. The race tracks were in the creek bottom. Mort Herrean was among the sportsman who met there with others occasionally to while away the time of running their horses over the tracks and betting small amounts on the races. One day a few years after Jet Chaffin settled the land where Pro-tem now is he and Good Madewell run a horse race here. Each man bet a rifle gun and a few were present to see the race come off. Hiram Bias and "Jet" Chaffin were selected as Judges at the outcome. Good Madewell’s wife and Becca Chaffin wife of "Jet" Chaffin were also present and seated themselves near the tracks to watch the horses run through. As soon as the horses and riders were ready the race stock was put through under whip and the judges decided that Herrean’s horse beat Madewell’s 28 feet. This was no encouragement to Madewell’s wife and she exclaimed in a loud tone, "I knowed it, I knowed it, I knowed it". "Yes", says her husband, "I knowed it too" "Well you old fool", replied his wife, "What did you run for if you knowed you would lose the race. Now, Good Madewell", continued the disheartened woman, "from this on if you cannot win a race I want you to quit. You hear my voice do you." And her husband said he did and the spectators and those interested took their departure to their respective homes. And this broke up mine and Madewell’s horse racing in future, said Mr. Herrean.

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