The Turnbo Manuscripts

by Silas Claiborne Turnbo

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By S. C. Turnbo

One day soon after George Fritts, whose native state was Virginia, moved to the north bank of White River in what is now Keesee Township, Marion County, Ark., he and "hunter" Bill Clark and Lige Ford were hunting on the head of Little Buck Creek where Fritts shot down a small buck deer with spike horns. The buck was wounded only and made a struggle to rise on its feet and Fritts fearing it might escape leaped on the deer to hold it down. The little beast had more life in it than he anticipated and the result was a fight was on at once. The deer kicked terrible and tried to use its horns. but Mr. Fritts was stout and robust and clasping the deer in his arms and held it like a vice until Clark and Ford arrived on the spot who were attracted by the report of the rifle and the racket following it. As the two men came up Mr. Ford remarked, "What are you doing, George," and Fritts replied, "Darn it, don’t you see what I’m doing." At this moment the buck made a hard struggle to free itself from Fritts’ hug and man and beast rolled down the hill together to the bed of the hollow. Here the deer renewed its struggle for liberty and did its best efforts to get away or horn its tormentor, but it failed to break the hunter’s embrace and he held to it until Lige Ford cut its throat with a knife. The wounded buck had kicked and torn Fritts’ hunting garb into tatters and bruised his body and limbs severely. Mr. Fritts said that this one was the last deer he ever undertook to control just for the sake of preventing it from getting away.

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