The Turnbo Manuscripts

by Silas Claiborne Turnbo

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By S. C. Turnbo

Mr. Calvin Vance got off the following which he said was strictly true.

As a rule hunters were full of fun and mischeviousness and would play "pranks" on each other when an opportunity offered itself. As a general thing their companions would take it all in a good humor and return the compliment as soon as they got the chance. "I recollect one night," said Mr. Vance, "that while Bert Rederic was fire hunting in the river 10 miles above Forsyth, Mo., he shot a small deer in the water and after it had become rigid he took it to a log which was lying where the water was knee deep and propped up against a log in a standing position. He understood from others that two other fire hunters was intending to start down the river on a fire hunt in the latter part of the night, and this dead deer as it stood in the water would be a very enticing thing for them to shoot at and it seems so funny to hear them shooting at it and he would amuse himself at their expense. After he had propped up the dead animal in a shape to suit him he paddled the canoe further down and landed it behind the toe head of a small isle and smothered the torch so that the light would not show any above the level of the top of the isle and sat down in the canoe and waited several hours for results. Near 3 a.m. he saw a light up the river which he knew was his friends, the fire hunters. As the river was low it was some time before they reached the log where the dead deer stood. They saw it and supposed it was a live one and shot several balls into its body before discovering their mistake. But they took the little deer along though for its hide and Mr. Bert Rederic put his light entirely out and lay very low and silent while they were passing the island on their way down the river."

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