SEVERAL STORIES OF ALL SORTS
By S. C. Turnbo
J. W. (Jim) Jones says that he shot a buck once on Trimble Creek, Marion
County, Ark., in 1872 that weighed 140 lbs. after it was dressed. Henry
Grace says that John Shanks while residing in the cane bottom above the
mouth of Little North Fork killed a deer that its hide after being dried
ready for market weighed 14 ¾ lbs. "I also sold a buck hide
to Joe Hardware who sold goods at Isabella, Ozark County, Mo., that weighed
14 ¼ lbs. The hide was in good condition but it seemed so heavy that
the merchant weighed it three times and gave it a thorough examination.
Then he paid me 40 cts. per lb. for it," said Mr. Grace. "I also
remember," said Mr. Grace, "of killing a monster buck one day
just west of where the hamlet of Dugginsville, Mo., now stands that its
hams alone (without saddle) weighed 57 lbs.
John Bias tells of killing a buck one day at the mouth of Calebs hollow
of Little North Fork that one of its hams soon after being dressed weighed
41 lbs. Its hide after being well dried weighed 12 lbs. "I sold the
hide to John Graham who sold goods on the old Elias Keesee farm on Little
North Fork. It will be remembered that John Graham died several years ago
at Spokane Falls, Washington. Mr. Graham gave me 25 cts. per lb. for the
deer hide," said Mr. Bias. Oliver Risley in referring to peculiar colored
deer says that he killed a 5 point buck on Coon Creek in Marion County,
Ark., one day that its back from the root of the tail to the shoulders and
extending a few inches down on each side of the deer was covered with wool
as fine as silk with the exception of a few scattered blue hair mixed, the
wool was white. Mr. Risley said he showed the hide to John Jones and John
Lane and other hunters and they told him they never saw a deer of that description
before. The animal weighed 96 lbs. gross.
John Garrison relates the following. "About 8 miles below Gainesville,
Mo., while I was hunting on a ridge near Lick Creek, I noticed a white animal
60 yards away which was as white as a swan. As it was standing still I crept
up nearer to it and to my astonishment I discovered that it was a white
deer and I shot and killed it. It was a small deer but it was something
of a curiosity to me. I kept its hide for years and finally my children
wore it out playing on it."
Jacky Haggard gives an account of killing a deer one day on the divide
between Panther Creek and Jonus Fork of White River. When he first saw the
animal it had its head down and he thought it was a goat and watched it
several minutes before he finally decided it was a deer. "At the report
of the gun it run about 100 yards from me," said he, "then wheeled
around and ran back toward me and fell near where I shot it. The deer was
white except a black streak on its back. The ball passed through the heart."
Luke Tatum informed me that Mac Pettyjohn who was once postmaster at
Ozark, Christian County, Mo., killed a deer in Elk Valley, a tributary of
Finley Creek, that the hair all over the deer was of a deep blue color.
A thick coat of short curly fur was under the hair. Mr. Pettyjohn kept this
hide at the post office a number of years and I saw it several times there.
Mr. Tatum also says that a man of the name of Masters killed a white deer
many years ago in this same valley.
Among matters of a miscellaneous character as told by hunters is the
following. Annanias Poplin tells of killing a buck one day in the month
of January with a large set of horns (7 and 9 points) that the horns was
covered with velvet. The old hunter said that this was something strange
for this time of year. The deer was killed on Mountain Creek near the state
line which divides Ozark County, Mo., and Marion County, Ark. Mart Ingram
tells of shooting and wounding a doe on Shoal Creek above where Protem,
Mo., is and it ran beyond his view. He went and got his brother Silvanuses
dog (often called Long Ingram). After the dog chased the deer about ¾
of a mile he caught it, but the deer was not dead when he and his brother
got to him. They found that the bullet from his gun had passed through the
deers heart. "The animal lived about an hour after it was wounded,
It said Mr. Ingram.
Fred Graham, a long resident of Ozark County, Mo., says that he went
to Andrew Friends house one day and seen a large pet deer with horns
as large as chair frames lying on the bed. The buck was as docile as a pet
sheep. Mr. Graham said that the deers big horns looked frightful as
he lay on the bed. Elijah Friend tells about himself and his brother John
Friend being out hunting together one day in the hills of Little North Fork
when John shot a deer that was lying down. At the report of the rifle the
deer turned on its broad side and John thought it was dead and he walked
up to it with knife in hand to cut its throat to make it bleed. Placing
one foot on its horns and bending down he barely had time to touch its throat
with the knife when the seemingly dead animal gave a quick flounce and kicked
John a sommersault and away sped the deer. But the dog soon caught It. John
recovered himself and cut the deers throat while the dog held it."
Jacky Haggard among other things said that while hunting one day on James
Fork of White River he shot a buck which was standing about 75 yards from
him and it run about 150 yards in an opposite direction. Then wheeled around
suddenly and charged toward him. "I supposed," said Uncle Jack,
"that the buck was coming at me for a fight and prepared myself accordingly.
But when the animal had run up in ten feet of me it fell dead. My rifle
carried a small bullet, but it had torn through the deers heart."
George Billings gives an account of following a bunch of deer on Sister (south of White River) Creek in Marion County, Ark., in time of a snow. They were shy and it was several hours before he got up in sight of them. They had stopped on a hillside. "There was a hollow between me and the deer. The bunch was not less than ¼ mile from me and thinking if I crept any closer to them they would run before I got in close range of them. I was carrying a 38 calibre Winchester, but just for the fun of doing so I concluded to shoot at one and see how close to the deer the ball would hit the snow. I raised the sight to the last notch and took aim about one foot over the deers back and fired. To my amazement I saw the deer fall and when I got to it, it was dead. The ball had hit it accidently and went through its body."
Springfield-Greene County Library