Archive for June, 2007

From “A Pictorial History of the Old 23rd District” by Larry T. Perry

In later years, Ben Pinson acquired a gasoline engine powered boat. … Ben had whiskers that reached almost to his waist.One day as he was cranking the old gasoline engine, his beard got caught in the flywheel. Ben braces both hands against the cylinder and the flywheel pulled all of his beard out and he didn’t utter a sound. Someone asked him if it didn’t hurt. His reply was “By Ned, it hurt like the devil but I had rather it hurt than to smash my face into the flywheel.” pg. 10

One of the first lessons the boys usually learn the hard way was not to pull a cockle burr out of the hair on a mule’s belly unless you were up to being kicked over three corn rows. pg. 10

Kermit Evans had a little horse that created quite a problem. Kermit had taken him to a blacksmith shop operated by a York located across the street from the old hitchyard in Paris. The horse got so rough that York told Kermit to get him out of the shop and never bring him back. The first time Tom tried to shoe him, they tried swinging his foot with a rope and pulley rigging, but they had to release his foot to keep him from breaking his leg. … The next Saturday they tried blindfolding him and he tore a new woven wire fence down between the shop and the house. They finally threw the horse on the ground and tied all four feet together. Kermit sat on the horse’s head while Tom shoed him. pg. 54

There was one thing common among the older people and that was, if the cure didn’t nearly kill you, it wasn’t any good. pg. 56

If two people are walking together, it is bad luck for them to split and walk on opposite sides of a tree or other object. If you do, one must turn back and go around on the other side and say “bread and butter.” pg. 58

To get rid of the warts, cut a notch in a stick for each wart and throw it away. When the stick rots, the warts will disappear. pg. 59

In one case, one of the men was searching for his brother’s still. His brother was hid in the woods and as the man approached a fork in the path, his brother drew a bead on his back with a rifle. If the man had taken the left fork, his brother would have shot him. Fortunately, the man chose the right fork of the path which led away from his brother’s still. pg. 60

The bootleggers were the ones who sold whiskey. Of course, it was illegal so they had certain signs to advertise their merchandise. One old timer in the 23rd would roll one of his pants legs up between the top of his shoe and his knee when he had whiskey for sale. If you saw him with both pants legs down, he was dry. … Another old timer that lived between Big Sandy and Paris … always raised a big crop of peanuts. He would sell his whiskey in sacks of peanuts on the court square in Paris. A peack of peanuts contained a quart of whiskey, a half-bushel contained a half-gallon and a bushel of peanuts had a gallon of moonshine in it. pg. 61

Curt Evans always went barefooted and his feet would get tough as leather. One time they were standing around a fire and Luther said, “Curt you’re standing on a coal of fire.” Curt, without moving a muscle said, “Which foot Pappy?” pg. 66

One Halloween night a bunch of boys took John O. Giles wagon apart and hauled it up on the roof of his stockbarn, piece by piece. They then reassembled the wagon sitting astride the ridge row on the barn roof. It took a group of men all day to get the wagon down from the roof. pg. 69