The Turnbo Manuscripts

by Silas Claiborne Turnbo

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By S. C. Turnbo

In refering to the horrible scenes enacted by wicked men of war days, Mr. William Sturman, a former resident of Greene County, Mo., now of Brown Branch, Taney County, gives these details of the bloody days. "One day," said he, "Iverson Jones, a union man and who was a pioneer settler of Greene County, met a party of men in the road near Jones Spring 6 miles east of Springfield and they shot him off of his horse and rode off and left the body where it fell."

In giving a description of the death and burial of Billy Burton who lived in a hollow 1 ½ miles south of the Lawrence Mill on Beaver Creek. Where he lived is known now as Roosterville. "One day during the heat of the war a party of desperate men met Burton on Little Caney Creek. sometimes called Dry Caney, and shot him to death and scalped him. Among his slayers was Lee Basier, a nephew of Burton’s, and he was the man who so cruelly cut and tore off the scalp from the dying man’s head. Basier carried the scalp off with him. As men were so exceedingly scarce in that section at that time the women took charge of the body and buried it in the woods on a level plot of ground ½ mile west of Caney Creek and 1 ¼ miles south of Big Beaver Creek. Burton’s grave is in a field now. An oak tree was left standing at the grave to mark the spot where Burton, who was a union man, received interment. The ladies who buried Mr. Burton were Mrs. Lottie Allie, wife of Wiley Allie, Mrs. Sallie Roberts, wife of John Roberts, and Miss Lucy Allie, daughter of Wiley Allie. Mr. Sturman said that one day several years after the close of those days of anger while he and others were passing this grave they noticed some of the bones protruding above the top of the ground and they stopped and dug a hole in the top of the grave and placed the bones in It and covered them up. Mr. Burton was killed near where Brown Branch is now.

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