The Turnbo Manuscripts

by Silas Claiborne Turnbo

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By S. C. Turnbo

An amusing anecdote was told me by Rila Mullen of his brother Joe Mullen who lived an the south side of the Buffalo Fork of White River a mile and a half above the mouth of Rush Creek. He said that his brother owned a fine hog that had left home while there was plenty of mast and got fat and was a little wild, which made it troublesome to bring home and after making a strong effort to drive it ahead of the horse the hog got into a rough place in the woods and escaped. He did not want to lose the grunter for he could make a fine lot of meat out of it so his desire was to bring it home alive and feed it a while on corn and so he made another trial to learn the hog where its home was but failed as usual. By this time he was weary of being beat so often and on the following day he put his rifle in extra good shape for shooting and catched his old gentle horse he called Ned and mounted him and started on his last hunt as he supposed for his contrary hog for he intended this time to bring it home dead or alive. After he had hunted a few hours for it he discovered it in a thicket of small undergrowth and without offering to try to drive it again he took aim at the hogs head with the rifle and shot it down and after sticking it with his knife and making it bleed freely he took the bridle rein from the head stall and tied one end of the rein to the hogs jaw and the other end to the horses tail and starting off leading the horse by the head stall of the bridle. Old Ned went along very docile at the start but after he had pulled the dead hog a few yards he took fright all on sudden and surged forward and pulled loose from my brother and away he went running and snorting, as the frightened horse dashed along at head long speed over the stoney ground jerking the hog along behind him they left only a dim trail. My brother being a little excited how the horse had treated him followed on in the direction the horse had run without taking time to follow up the trail where the hog had been jerked so swiftly along over the rough ground. After the horse had got out of view he happened to change his course and after running 150 or 200 yards further he tore loose from the dead hog and went on home and when Joe arrived home he found Old Ned there and part of the bridle rein hanging to his tail but no hog. He now turned and went back into the woods to make a search for the hog. He had often looked for it while it was alive now he would search for it while it was dead. He had a long tiresome walk before he found it and summing it up he had more trouble in locating the hog after it was dead than he had in finding it when it was alive. Not wanting to fool with Old Ned any more he went back home and hitched his work team to the wagon and hauled the hog home.

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