The Turnbo Manuscripts

by Silas Claiborne Turnbo

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By S. C. Turnbo

One of the old time hunters who roamed over the hills and killed game on Jimmies Creek in Marion County, Ark., is J. T. (Tomps) McCracken whose stories like others that are told by the old timers are interesting. Here is the way he gives an account of how he killed some deer on one occasion in the valley of Jimmies Creek. "One day in the month of January, 1857, while a few inches of snow lay on the ground, I rode to Jimmies Creek and went on up Wild Cat Creek, a rough stream that runs into Jimmies Creek from the north side. Its mouth is where the Wild Cat school house now is and near two miles below Kingdon Springs and while riding along I saw 7 deer in a group standing on a rough hillside above me. I dismounted and after hitching my horse I crept up to a low ledge of rock which was near 100 yards below where the deer were standing. They did not appear to be the least afraid of me, and from this ledge and reload and shot until I killed five of them. They did not all drop where they were standing when I commenced shooting at them, for at report of the gun the live ones would advance slowly toward me and the last one shot fell in 50 of the ledge where I was shooting from. I could have killed the other two as easily as I had the other five but I had exhausted my supply of bullets and had to quit shooting. The remaining two deer were saucy, for while I was removing the hides of the dead deer they stood and pawed the snow while I was at work. They did seem like they approved of the way I had been slaughtering their companions. I took the hides and hams of the deer home on the horse and returned back on the following day with more bullets and found the same two deer in 200 yards of where I stood at the ledge of rock the day before and killed the other deer. I shot one of them down and the other one stood still until I reloaded my gun and killed it also. This gives you an idea how easy it was to kill all the deer you wanted when there was plenty of them here." said Mr. McCracken.

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