The Turnbo Manuscripts

by Silas Claiborne Turnbo

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By S. C. Turnbo

A very interesting hunting story was related to me by Dave Bancum who was an early resident on Crooked Creek in Marion County, Ark. Mr. Bancum in furnishing the account said that on a certain occasion in the long ago, "My father-in-law, John Tabor, and his son "Doc" Tabor and myself went over to Music Creek on a prolonged hunt. The weather was cold, but it was an excellent time to save wild meat. A snow of three or four inches deep covered the ground. We took an ox wagon and two pack horses with us. It proved to be hard work to guide an ox team through the rough hills of Music, but we finally stopped at a suitable place, cleaned away the snow, built a big fire and made preparations for the next day’s hunt. The next day proved to be colder than the previous one. After breakfast I started out to try my luck with the big fat bucks of that region. I was accompanied by a little dog I called "Spring." Near a mile and a half from camp I noticed seven deer lying down on the snow under a cedar tree. They were on a north hillside. A bitter cold northwest wind was blowing at a brisk rate. The deer allowed me to get in short range, and I stopped and made the dog keep quiet and then I aimed my rifle at one and shot it as it lay on the snow. It stretched out and died. The others got up and stood under the tree until I killed four more. I wounded the sixth one, but it escaped and I shot at the seventh and missed. My hands were so benumbed with cold that it was all I could do to reload and shoot. I was too nigh frozen to remove the hides and dress the meat and let the deer lay where they fell and returned to camp to warm and get the pack horses and help to take the deer to camp."

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