William Monroe Griffith
"A Mr. Bottom had three mail routes out of
Linn Creek--the Bagnell Route with a two horse hack; a horseback route
to Montreal; and another to Gunter's Spring--a horseback route. I
carried the mail route to Montreal one 4th of July--a thirty mile trip
for 50 cents. I got in about three o'clock and got back in time for
the picnic. I went with Janie Jackson, daughter of John Jackson.
He was a good fiddler and his daughters all played instruments."
"I helped put in a tie raft of 1100 (railroad ties) on the Little Niangua in Camden County in about 1902. George Hart was the contractor for the company. This would go into the Osage where smaller rafts would be joined together making up rafts of some 5000 or more. My father owned a farm at Basin Rock on the Big Niangua. This ground was very rich and a shock of corn would make a wagon load. Manns, McCullochs, Bunchs, and others lived in this neighborhood then.
The 1901 drought was pretty bad but the river land was good and fairly good crops were raised anyway. This was a lively country with something doing all the time with a dance or entertainment going on someplace. The dances I liked best were Cheater's Swing, Form a Star, Across the Hall, Wild Goose Chase, Grapevine Twist. The fiddlers were Van Derhart, John Gibson, Charlie Moulder. Fred Gayheart was the fur buyer in that country."
" There was a Preacher Stevens who taught school at Tick Ridge. They had a jolly school there with some entertainments with dialogues, etc."
"I once went to a picnic at Stoutland on July 4, 1903 and that day I traded a pistol for a good Elgin watch. The affair was full of music and local talented players. Down at Linn Creek there were two saloons and a third one put in. This was operated by
George Drake. A man was his own law. Bill Arnold owned a big flour mill on the Big Niangua between Basin Rock and Linn Creek. He ground wheat for the neighborhood; had the river dammed and it was fine place to fish. In the winter of 1902 I saw them cut the ice there and draw out almost a wagon bed of fish."
"When we moved to Camden County in 1903 the pension (his father's civil war pension) was to come to a country store six or seven miles from Linn Creek. This store was operated by a Mr. Rucker. He (Wm. Griffith's father) left his pension vouchers there for safekeeping. The storekeeper was forced to give up the vouchers by the U. S. Marshal and fined $50."
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