The Turnbo Manuscripts

by Silas Claiborne Turnbo

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By S. C. Turnbo

The part of White River between the old landing at Dubuque in now what is Boone County, Ark., and the mouth of Shoal Creek was a famed place to fire hunt for deer on this part of the water, which reminds me of an incident of fire hunting here. Billy Hawes, an old time hunter and citizen of this part of Arkansas, said that one night soon after the close of the Civil War he and another hunter and a negro man started from the Dubuque landing where Naves Ferry is now to fire hunt for deer. The canoe was big enough to float easy and steady with a bright torch in the bow of it. "When we had floated down to the mouth of East Sugar Loaf Creek," said Mr. Hawes, "I saw the shine or glistening of a deer’s eyes among some willows near the mouth of the creek and which stood close to the water. I raised my rifle and shot at the shining objects and I heard the deer fall. The colored man jumped out of the canoe and plunged along through the water until he reached the shore, then he halloowed to me that he saw the deer run and heard it fall. I and the other white man pushed our craft to shore and I went up to where the deer lay dead that I had shot. Just as I got to it the negro man halloed "Here it is." I thought in my own mind that he was mistaken and told him to come back for "Here is the deer," said I. "No says the negro, "here it is down here," and the outcome of it was that I had killed two deer at one shot, but I did not see the shine of but one deer’s eyes when I shot."

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