The Turnbo Manuscripts

by Silas Claiborne Turnbo

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By S. C. Turnbo

"One day in war times, " said Mrs. Elizabeth Clark, "while I was living on Little North Fork above the mouth of Little Creek I and Jane Haskins, while out afoot hunting for a horse, we met 6 men and a boy who were stragglers from Price’s army who had just made his raid into Missouri in October, 1864. They were all afoot and bareheaded and one man and the boy was barefooted and the shoes the other men had on were nearly worn out. Their clothes were ragged and hung in tatters. We met them on a hill between Little Creek and the North Fork and they said they were trying to make their way south. The boy was carrying a sack which was partly filled with ears of corn. Five of the men were walking in front of the boy and one was walking behind him with a club in his hand and when the boy who was evidently very tired and would lag a little the man with the club would hit him on the back or shoulder like driving a beast. The blow from the stick in the hands of the man would cause the helpless boy to go a little faster. The child never said a word against this cruel treatment. He was simply driven along by the brutish man and he seemed to be afraid to say anything. I felt interested in the way he was treated and I ask the men about him, They claimed that he was a widow woman’s son and that he had been with Price’s army on the raid and that he wanted to go back home but they intended to make him go south with them. We learned afterward that this same party had stopped at the Bob Gilliland farm on Little North Fork and Grannie Haskins had offered to give the boy food and the men would not allow it. The old lady was determined not to be outdone and give him some milk to drink in spite of all their threats to prevent it. I learned after the close of the war that the boy was murdered by these men in the hills of northern Arkansas, but this was not confirmed."

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