The Courier News from Blytheville, Arkansas on July 1, 1936 · Page 31
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The Courier News from Blytheville, Arkansas · Page 31

Blytheville, Arkansas
Issue Date:
Wednesday, July 1, 1936
Page 31
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WEDNESDAY, JULY 1, 1936 Floyd Mavgett Recalls Experiences in Days of Nol So Very Loiifi Ago No More Logs Like This One ' BIATHUVILLE, (AUK.) COU1UKU NEWS Oxcn-driviiii! is a lost art. thanks to this era of fnst automobiles and high powered trucks, but Mississippi county once knew a day not .so many years ago when the plodding beasts were mighty important as a means of motive power, and Ihe men who bandied them enjoyed a distinction of their own. i 1 of the conn- ! If '"ok six mules to haul .(his Icj ville, Floyd Ilnrgett, one ^ , ly's few i-emaining men who know | 1002 anything at all about Ihe real lcchnif|iic of a rawhide whip and an eight sleei- ox-team, is now ni\ automobile mechanic, but he can Icll many an interesting yarn or the days when ox-d'.'ivers were a swaggering lot. They were experts in llieir line ami commanded plenty of admiration and respect for their skill and for the prowess of their learns. From early childhood Hargett learned lo care for oxen and to stud^ their habits and peculiarities. He moved lo Btythcvillc in six feet In. diameter, which In came from what is now part of Blythcvillc. Seated on the log is Charles Harris, one of the oldest living natives t;t Blylhe- many trees like this one in clearing much cf Hie. in New Orleans; llio Gayoso, in Memphis, and the Planters, til si. tel in 1858 that owners of rlvei steumors wet nnd worked out schedules nnd uniform freight and passenger rates. The schedules were so arranged as lo make connections ami interc'iian^e business with the Illinois Central, whlcli was bi'liij; built into Cairo, and tlie Ohio and Misslsslpol railroad which was the Imporlant casl and west line. Mark Twain became a cub on Ihi' Alex Scoll, and a pilot In the lulu littles. Twain was snicduled lo RO aboard Hie Pennsylvania us a cub pilot, on the trip on which her boiler exploded when she burnrJ ' Just below Memphis. Twain missed the boat at Memp'hls. but his brother who was n clerk on the steamer wa.s badly injured, Many of tile old sclllcfs living loday in Mississippi county 'took their wedding trips on Hit. old rlv- cr packets. Thess u'oats were handsomely cqulppjd with a wedding suite, niid the captain made much of such passengers making trips on Viis slwuuer. land in Ihis section. This picture was made down town In Biylhcvllle. Life on Mississippi Colorful When Steam Boats Plied River Five muskralb were Introduced into Europe from Korth America In Mrs. J. W. Baclcv Cited by, National Organization| for War Service lllj'lhcvllle fjiilned national ree- •,nlUon for Its Uoil Cross work (luring the World Wnr when Mrs. J. W, Under was cited for her ucl- Ivilles In (Ills Held. Slie helped urijiinlzc llio local ehupler In 1017, fiMVfd as vlcc-i-halrmiin nil dtir- l"i: Hie win- nnd fur suvrrnl yearn Inid rlmrcc ol nil production In (lie chapter,- ulvlrij lier entire thi'c as n voluntoel'. After tlin win- closed ntul llio sewing room;; were discontinued die donated Hie use of her liomo (or 11 .sewing I'uoiu where gar- mcnls were mnde for rneonslruc- lion work. In rccoijnllloii of her work slie was luvurdcd n nieilnl \vltli four honor slrlpcs, deslynat- llon work period llic Incul chap- ler sent u total of 12.231 giinneiiU lo hospitals, refugees nnd for reconstruction work, tiu addition lo •ll.KHi hospital supplies. Mrs. Bailor wns tile first woiimn selected from Iliousands of com- minilly workers lo imve lier pic- lurc u iul mi article concernliiB her work wlllv the' lied' Cross In llio 1'iiinlly Album of the Red Cross Courier, the official niaKiizlne ot dial oi-Biiiilznllon, At the claw of llio win she was nuked u> write :i history of the diftptcr. copies or which were sent lo Wnshlnglon, D. c., the division lied Crass lu'iulo.iimters ul Hi. iinil » copy k,epl In the local of(ice. Slie served on Hie louil execu- livc uoiiid of tlie lied Cross for 15 years. After the peace llinc pioinnm she served i\s chidiman of I lie "ewe cummlllee," Shu wns roll call clmliimm In 1927-28-'.!!) and !:i ench ol the three years' more limn dpuhled nny i-oll call before or .since. Ainonit oilier nctMlle.s Mrs. Hader h a former president of llio lilyllievllle elmpler of the United IJaujjlilci-s of the Contal-1 eincy nnd vice-president of the Dlyllicvlllo Library Assoclallon. .SECTION C PACrE'l. lloiiora! For War Time Servic First Jury of Women, .;,",; Returns Guilty Verdict, The distinction cf having iliq first Jury In Ihe slate composed entirely of women Is believed'W bdonij to Blytlievllle. A man faced Ilils iimistml Jury In i\\? covrtrcom of. ' Mcg'itmie - jftl Walker in June, 1023. lie vyjs charged with "using profane iniii;- iiiigi' near a house of worship." , Tlie wonii'ii of the Jury li^idri llio evidence and arguments : .pf Deputy I'rosfciitor Ballon : iinil Kcimrth Ka.viKT, defense nttfir- iH'y. After dc-lltorallirj 32 mln- r'.cs lliey found llic ilcfciuhint tiulHy and Imposed n fine of $10 nntl costs. i Mis. J. W. Under served 'as lr "l'f.rr.\vum:i!i." wllh the lolhv/li ••, members euupletliiR Ihc jm/"> Mr:;. Marlha l.dlic, Mrs. Toin.Sc- coy, Mrs. IC.sslc Davis, Mrs. 1. .1. llealon, Mrs. Mary Phillips Kctlnson, Mrs T. ,1. Ornivdcr, Mi 5 ' Virsll Greene, Mrs. W. M. Jhnns nnd Mrs. Henry Humphrey. - In l!)32, Unhand granti'd wa iwmlls lo foreigners lo work, as doiiiMlic servants. In 1933, I'nls number Increased to more than 3500. Ttiere was no more colorful setting for the romances of the early ,„„,. „. -'-"••• —•> ........ - "• davs in Mississippi county ISM with he HaiBell family. His tl ,: lt rilrnishc<i u , ll!c 0 { A father, John Hai'sctt, owned .. number of steers and Floyd as a small boy followed tlie ox- drivers lo tile woods and learned Ihc thrill of cracking tlie loni; whips and seeing Hie big animals heed his .shouted commands. at Kuss As a lad of 12 he hroke and trained his own team of young steers, and soon found himself employed as a full-fledged logger for the National Handle company. In 1010 he and a' friend, another youth of his own age, took their tlccrs lo Ross. Ark., south o( Dell. near the present site of Victoria, where they were to join a crew of loggers. Because of their youth the toys were the null of many joke.s by the veteran ox-drivers, who climaxed their pranks by singing .1 fake gun tattle to frighten the newcomers. Hargett mill his companion were about ready to come back home when the older men relented in their "Initiation" and accepted the youths into lellow- Eliip. Hai'sctt went to Burdcllc In 1011 lo drive for Charley Itamcy niid in the year l!)lb -he wns logging in the Flat Lake section, for the next two years lie logged lor his father and for Mr. Ramey at Burdcllc, before going to Kciscr in, 1918 : to hnu! timber for the. Bh'thovillc Lumber company. •-K. •Enlistment in the army in 1313 hailed his logging activities until the war wa.s over. Steer Kcsenls Profanity -Hargett remembers many of Ihc county's famous old steers, particularly "Old Nig," nn animal owned by Dob King, wiio operated sawmills in various parts of tlio county at that time, "Bridle Walker," owned by Jack SiiHon, and a bis; team owned uy Bill Kettle. "Bridle Walker" was known far nnd wide for his sensitive nature. He resented any scolding on the part of the drivers. He was what loggers knew as a "wheeler." That, is, lie v.-as one of the two steers in the team always yoked directly in front of the wagon. Ho resented any form of profanity, and on many occasions, when the other steers were nnyokcd from Ihc wagon, "Bridle Walker" would run away when he heard any rough lang u a EC. ' : | The kettle steers were known throughout the county for being than rivc r bo[Us w , nicU , vere not the only m( , ans of travct ,„ thosc ( | avs , m]t al£o allordl . a lv touc h of elumor for the passengers wlio Ihpiu at every available boarded Itindlii! along tile Arkansas side of the river. The young belles of that day went to Mcmp'nis, SI. Louis or New Orleans lo do Iheir shopping, and the trips were the occasion for much preparation "ahd excitement in llic family and among Ihe ser- vanls. Boxes and bdgs wore packed and a drive in » wagon lo Hie nearest landing place of the boat consumed from one lo two days, for there \vcrc few dirt roads that, were passable, and during the bad weather season only a wagon and mule team could get through the mud. lioal Arrival an Occasion Boarding the boat at some point along tlie river where there were friends provided the opportunity for a visit and was usually made into a festive occasion. Neighbor's would Lie asked in for dinner, and the negro servants in the kitcliei would put Ihe "big pot in the little one" to serve all the tasty dishes for which file old South wa: famous. There was always great excitement about the arrival of the boats and much speculation as to just .how cotton "she" would be 'loading up t'ne river, which gauged the schedule of Ihc arrival at any of the landings. Ttie landings were usually at all [Mints where there was a cotton gin or store, if the river banks would permit. Sandbars were a great hazard for the driver to go along to drive cr the new owner. Good in Heavy Goinjj boats, especially in "old River," behind islands where i-iany of the landings in Mississippi county were made. H was a great sight to watch the negroes load the cotton and unload freight at these points. So groat was the demand for exlr.i help during file busy fall season lhat it is said a man could get his fare free to. ally point by helping with the freight. On the day or night w'ncn the boat was due at n landing the passengers would again gather up their baggage ani take up watch On Ihe banks, or have Ihc servants lake down Hi: bags while tiic festivities In the home continued until they were notified Ihc boat- was approaching, Kacli Known by Its Whittle As the boat would near' tlir lauding its arrival would be announced by w'nistlis—and each line had a different whistle, old rive hands knew them all by Ilieir signals, and tbc word would go round that it was time to get to the river for tlie "Rob" Vuui just blowi for a landing. The best drivers and always cnrcd well for their animals, Hargett said, and he remembers onn driver who made it a habit to go into the steer lot at night before going to bed. There lie would rub the head of each steer nnrt talk to the animal, seeing that the team was well contented for the night. Good steers were rubbed down and gloomed just as good horses arc. One reason oxen were so widely The "Rob" was Hit Robert E Lee, one of the most palatial steamers of the Lee line, which was among tlie laX to enjoy Ihis colorful trade on file Mississippi. Two long and Ihrce short whistles was the landing signal of Ibis boat The Anchor line steamers whic'.i plied die rivcr during the ao's had the same signal for all liieir boat; which was one long, two short and one long blasts. '•' ' ' -••'• • Once the boats wcro out in millstream (lie captain devoted much of bis Urns lo entertaining '.i!s guests. Many ol Hie old boats had palatial cabins and salons furnished in fine old woods, mirrors, and hung with cryslal cliaudelici-3 , Meals were elaborate and dancing wllh the steers iu the evening wus'a. popular mort'J 01 amusement. Among the boats i'nat ran in the Mississippi from 1857 lo the outbreak of the Civil War were: Angle Norman, Allegheny,' Alvin Adams, Scott, Atlantic. Antelope. Ben Bolt, Admiral, Alma. Alleqnippa, Alex Daniel Boonc, Fanny Bullitt, Belle Key, Baltimore. Belifast, Henry Choulcan, Crystal Palace, George Collier, Grace Darling. Falcon, Mediator, Monarch. Magnolia, Natchez, Queen of the West. used in this section was because they were good "mudders," being able to drag a heavily loaded log - -, wagon through the deepest mire the smartest, best trained oxen i where horses or mules would be in tills country, llargctt says. ' Among the old time drivers who enjoyed 'a county-wide reputation were Hyson McBiidc, Ab Ford and Henry Parker. There were a number of others, but Hargelt, recalls these three most vividly. Often the drivers would become attached to a team 'of steers and it was not uncommon when an owner sold his animals for the helpless. Too, the oxen were less chpcnsive to buy and maintain, and were quickly and easily trained lo work. They were slow, however, and improved roads and the passing of the timber industry have virtually eliminated them from the scene. "Pelc" Barnes, of Huffman, has a few of them, probably the last in northeast Arkansas. After the boats as th . war Hiere were such J. M. write, Natch:/, Guiding star, Buckeye State. Jolni K. Speed, City of St. Louis, City of Memphis, City of New Orleans. City of Vicksburg. City of Osceola, and the Lee boats—Sadie Lee. Filers Lee, Rces Lee, Stacker Lee, Robert E. Lee and Bayliss Lee the Delta, Kate Adams and Hill City. The J. s. excursion boat of today . was the City of Quincy, and for- thcm merly ran between st. Louis and •St. Paul. Mark Twain Pilot The three most jiopular hotels of that day were the St. Charles. Snlo Dislribuloru For Choiilc's Arkansas Concord Sherry Wine JlAii'i'irltirrd nnd Botllcd by Richard II. Choate. K. V. i). 1, I'aragoitld, Ark. Catering to the Tastes of Those Who Appreciate FINE WINES AND LIQUORS We slock nil High Grade ami Standard brands of Whiskry.s, Brandies and Cins for those who prefer quality. \Vc do not search Ihc market for cheap, inferior close- on Is, but we arc always alert to stock the best values money c:ui buy. Our stock of wines includes all flavors of the famous Califoruiu "Santa Ahcia" Wine, fortified with Brandy. CROSSTOWN WHISKEY SHOP MAIN AND DIVISION , . ins " total of s.'JOfl hours of work WHOLE SPACE! REFRIGERATOR SAV-A-STEP anapj Jnjumly into hangers on refrigerator door if you prefer it ihcrc—auto* maiically miking rearahclfspace as accesiible is front space j II Read how the "handiest thing in refrigeration," plus many other big new features, makes the new Stewart- Warner roomier, easier to use, more economical to operate... \7° U ' D PAY S25 (o $50 more for any oth'et refrigerator to' get as A much really gct-nt-Mc space as the new Stcwart-.Warncr gives you! It's (lie first refrigerator where all slidf space is front space—where cveryihmg is at your fingertips—where you can actually arrange .things lo suit your own needs exactly. Women call SAV-A-STEP the greatest refrigerator invention in years. Yet its ,ust one of a dozen Stewart-Warner scoops . . . features like SLID- A-TRAY, the hidden rearranging tray that appears at a touch—T1LT-A- SHELF, the shelves that fold away instantly to make room for tall bottles or oversize packages-the new illuminated cold control with' separate summer and winter ranges—and others just as new. We're offering brand new easy terms, loo, on this new Stcwart-.Warncr easier (hsn anything we've ever offered you before. Make our store your first stop when you look at rcfrigerators-for die handiest thing in refrigeration — and the easiest to buy. SAV-A-STEP lih! off 'at hinges and out iruundy-carrfescvcry. thing for l whole: meal lo the kitchen cable at one trip—saves (he current wasted by repealed Opening of refrigerator. SL1D-A-TRAY slide* out or buck it a (ouch—holds almojc a shelf-full cf food At once on tip proof diamond-grid ihcUmg —frees >-our riintJj for rcacrsng- ' etc. ' 111 S, Broadway

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