219 Chapters
  Title Author Publisher Format Buy Remix
Medium 9780253010285

14 The Buy In

Mike Roos Quarry Books ePub

Everyone was aware that Ireland’s second opponent, the Holland Dutchmen, would be a far sterner test for the Spuds and Pete Gill than Spurgeon had been. In fact, they were likely to be one of the most difficult opponents on the entire schedule. Holland had several returning starters, led by big men Butch Fenneman and Bill Buse, and many experts in the area favored them not only to replace Ireland atop the Patoka Valley Conference but to be a genuine small-school threat to capture the Huntingburg Sectional title. Thus, Pete Gill began ruminating on strategy against them almost as soon as he returned home from Spurgeon.

It helped that his support among students and townsfolk was now growing, even if only incrementally, in the wake of the victory over Spurgeon. The hitchhiking stunt had not only motivated his team but had also won him a few new fans, who found him at least to be more entertaining than his predecessor. Whether he was truly a better basketball coach would remain an open question.

See All Chapters
Medium 9781574411607

Part One Day 1

Geraldine Ellis Watson University of North Texas Press PDF

Reflections on the Neches

Part One

Day 1

LAUNCH OFF

River Mile 108 12:00 Noon

It was a glorious autumn day, the river was just right, my boat was packed with simple necessities, I was ready. My 15-year-old blind samoyed dog, Ulysses,

Jr., was also ready, and David, my son, was ready to launch us off. We were putting in at Town Bluff and I had left my VW van at Sheffield’s Ferry (Highway

1013), the takeout point. Junior and I climbed aboard my 14-foot flat-bottom riverboat, and David pushed us off into the current to begin our odyssey. Ulysses,

Jr., posed proudly like a figurehead in the prow, his ears erect to catch the sounds of all the things his poor blind eyes were missing. How joyously he had leaped into the boat when I said, “Yes, Darling, you can go!”

At this point, I should have sailed grandly and majestically off onto the river and into my great adventure, but, alas, the Corps of Engineers, who regulate the release of water at Dam B, just a few hundred yards upstream, had decided to hold the water for awhile, so there was no current. A strong wind came up and pushed my light craft backward, so there I sat, paddling furiously and going nowhere. David stayed long enough to have a good laugh and left me to the mercy of the wind and river. Finally, the wind slacked, and I made enough headway to get downstream into some current. I continued to wield the paddle with vigor, however, in order to get away from the developed areas below the dam before night fell. My heart was set on camping the first night on the big sandbar at Cowart’s Bend. Another

See All Chapters
Medium 9781574416527

Chapter 2 - A Cowboy's a Man with Guts and a Hoss

Mitchel P. Roth University of North Texas Press ePub

“People don't want to see a rodeo cowboy die, but they want to be there when he does.”

—Rodeo rider Jim Shoulders2

THE cowboy is arguably the most indelible and enduring image of the American West (if not the entire country). He emerged as a Western frontier hero in the nineteenth century and American popular culture has feasted on his image ever since, transforming what one folklorist called “the adventuresome horseman of the frontier into a national symbol of radical individualism.”3 Most authorities have traced the origins of the term “cowboy” back to around 1725. By the American Revolution the term cowboy had attained a more derogatory connotation, when it was used to refer to Tory guerrillas who jingled cowbells in order to lure “patriotic Americans into the brush” as an ambush strategy.4 By 1847, Mirabeau Lamar, the second president of the Republic of Texas, noted in his papers that “Anglo ‘Cow-Boys’ were marauders, thieves who had rounded up cattle between the Nueces and Colorado.”5 And still another Texas writer noted that the border “'cow driver’ was often a robber and at times a murderer.”6

See All Chapters
Medium 9781574413205

Caney Creek Night Hunting: A Saga of Dire Situations and Scared Prayers

Edited by Kenneth L. Untiedt University of North Texas Press PDF

7978-ch05.pdf

10/6/11

8:17 AM

Page 335

CANEY CREEK NIGHT HUNTING: A SAGA OF

DIRE SITUATIONS AND SCARED PRAYERS by Wildwood Dean Price

One of the most memorable coon hunts I ever remember going on got underway late one Saturday evening in 1957. It was early autumn, and the day was clear, cool, and damp—the kind of dampness that a coon dog can really work a trail on.

By the time I arrived at Uncle Earl’s, he and Joe Choice had unpenned the dogs and were getting ready to leave for a hunt on

Caney Creek. The usual discussion broke out between Uncle Earl and Joe Choice as to where we could get the best hunt.

This time, Joe Choice won the argument.

“We ain’t been to the old railroad bridge that crosses Caney in a coon’s age. Everyone is taking bets that I can’t climb that giant cottonwood tree that grows there. I wanna prove to myself that I can climb Goliath; that’s what everyone is calling that old tree.

That’s where I wanna go.”

It was final; Uncle Earl wanted to see if Joe Choice could climb

Goliath, too.

See All Chapters
Medium 9781574414615

Horses and Marines

Ron Tatum University of North Texas Press ePub

Horses and Marines

Another experience I had with horses before I really understood them, was on active duty in the Marine Corps. The Marines don’t usually have a need for horses, but at one base I was the officer in charge of the stables at the Marine Corps mountain survival school, located high in the Sierra mountains of California. I was one of three officers and seven enlisted men who taught at the school. It was great duty. We taught skiing all winter long, often on skis for fifteen hours a day. And we taught rock climbing during the summer months. Our students were Marines from bases all over the world, many of whom had never seen snow, and some of them didn’t know they had a fear of heights until they took our summer course. I was the only officer up to that time who completed a tour of duty at that base and never ended up in the hospital.

I was assigned to be in charge of the horses before I even knew what their purpose was. Some of my friends and I used to race them across the rocky meadows at an insane full gallop, but what the hell, we were Marines, weren’t we? Besides, if we fell and injured ourselves we wouldn’t have to risk our necks climbing around on those 1000-foot cliffs where we held our classes.

See All Chapters
Medium 9781574414615

Starting Out

Ron Tatum University of North Texas Press ePub

Starting Out

I remember clearly one of my first encounters with a customer’s horses. Just out of horseshoeing school, I had been an “official” horseshoer for about a week. The only dirt on my leather chaps was from dragging them around on the ground at the horseshoeing school. Everyone did this. It’s embarrassing when you’re a brand-new horseshoer. Customers watch you with skepticism and suspicion. But it’s even worse being a brand-new horseshoer with a spotless pair of chaps. On this first day, I was helping my new customer and his son round up six or seven horses for me to work with. It was a hot, dusty day in Northern California and the horses were racing in all directions around the corral. When they ran toward me, I took off for the fence. “Don’t run!” shouts the owner. “They won’t run into you. Just stand there and head them toward me.”

The owner told me to stand still with my arms outstretched. His 17-year-old son was doing the same thing about eight feet away from me. Horses everywhere. I watched the son who seemed to know how to do this correctly. As I watched in frozen fascination, two horses ran out of a cloud of dust right over the top of the son, wheeled around, and looked in my direction. I left the playing field.

See All Chapters
Medium 9781574411607

Part Two Day 3

Geraldine Ellis Watson University of North Texas Press PDF

Reflections on the Neches

Part Two

Day 3

THIRD DAY

River Mile 86

8:30 A.M.

Next morning, after an uneventful night, I launched off and stopped at the next cutbank bend and climbed the bluff, planning to explore an inland lake called Morgan Lake. The once magnificent forests adjacent to the river here have been clearcut and the rough road, which led from the bluff toward the forests, fanned out in numerous branches into the clearcut. I was unable to locate the lake, but did find something else more interesting. Where the soil had eroded along the road leading from the bluff, I found flint chips, bits of charcoal, and pottery shards, which indicated that this bluff had been an Indian habitation site. All these bluffs where the river cut into higher terraces must have been inhabited by the aborigines. I would have liked to spend more time exploring here but planned to spend the night at the Eason camp and wasn’t sure how long it would take me to get there, so I proceeded on my way.

SMITH’S BEND

River Mile 84

See All Chapters
Medium 9781574416527

Epilogue

Mitchel P. Roth University of North Texas Press ePub

“The Texas criminal justice department just doesn't want to be in the rodeo business.”

—Jim Willett, Former Huntsville Prison Warden

IT has been thirty years since the sounds of the rodeo were last heard in the arena next to the Huntsville Walls Unit. Now the arena is gone as well. Virtually anyone associated with the Texas prison system, or who hails from Huntsville for that matter, has probably been asked on more than one occasion about whether the Texas Prison Rodeo still exists. After responding “no” to the question, the next query without fail is usually either “when did it end?” or “why did it end?” Although many East Texans look back on family outings at the TPR on October Sundays with a sense of nostalgia and wistfulness, if one were to search the Texas Prison Rodeo blogosphere today these rodeo memories tend to be a more mixed bag. One guy named Dave remembered, “I had a buddy who went to one of the last prison rodeos as an inmate. He said it was awful. They left the unit at 3 in the morning and all they had to eat until they got back to the unit that night was a sandwich and a soda water. They had to sit in the sun from early morning till late afternoon. He said it was not an experience he would like to repeat.” Another spectator who went to one of the last shows remembered that “the arena seemed old, but it was outdoors, out in the country, and felt like what a rodeo should be like…. I remember a bunch of inmates dressed in stripes running around the arena chasing something. I forget what. Overall it seemed a more raw and rough experience”1 compared to the annual Houston Livestock and Rodeo Show.

See All Chapters
Medium 9781574414615

More Pig Stories

Ron Tatum University of North Texas Press ePub

More Pig Stories

Some of my best horse customers lived up in the hills of Northern California where horses were a way of life. We lived there, too. The houses and ranches were spread out and most people had plenty of room for horses used for working cattle and sheep, for pleasure riding, and for shows, fairs, and rodeos. It was horse country. It was also wild pig country. Almost everybody in the county had some kind of wild pig story where the storyteller had been chased through the woods and into the house, where pig and person raced around the house until the person jumped on top of the refrigerator in a final effort to save their skin. About half of these storytellers could show you the scars from the pig attack. The stories and scars all seemed to be authentic.

My stories aren’t nearly as exciting. I seldom saw any wild pigs, but I saw signs of them. I raised a lot of rabbits that we either sold to pet shops or ate, and after slaughtering the ones for eating, I would throw the hides, guts, heads, and feet over a fence into the woods. By the following morning there would be no trace of any of this. The pigs came down and ate everything. Once I found a tail that had been overlooked, but everything else, skulls and all, had been eaten. I knew it was pigs and not vultures, because I could see the tracks. These pigs were also a nuisance to the sheep ranchers because the pigs became so bold as to start eating a birthing lamb before it had even fully emerged.

See All Chapters
Medium 9780253346988

2. Non-Skids

Abraham Aamidor Indiana University Press ePub

Charlie Taylor, at 6-foot-1 and 190 pounds, was becoming a man. His great shock of thick, dark hair was combed provocatively straight back over his head, and his long jaw demanded attention. He was just nineteen when he stepped forward with firm posture and resolute gait onto the floor of the Akron Firestone Clubhouse, “a dinky bandbox” of a gymnasium,1 as one basketball player of the era called it, but an important landmark throughout the Midwest nonetheless. Less than two years out of high school, Taylor had done the unthinkable in pursuing a professional basketball career when such a thing hardly existed in America. By way of analogy, think of heading to Broadway before there was a Broadway. Chuck’s career with the Commercials was short-lived, as the team folded the season following his graduation. He next likely played for two small-time Indianapolis teams, the Habichs and Omar Bakery, but Akron was his first true foray away from home. The most famous picture of Chuck in existence reveals how proud he was to be in this city, and to play for this team—it’s 1921, and he’s standing on the roof of the Firestone Tire and Rubber Company while wearing his heavy cotton duck shorts and a wool-fiber jersey with the antique Firestone “F” lettering on the chest.

See All Chapters
Medium 9781574414615

More Injuries and Violence

Ron Tatum University of North Texas Press ePub

More Injuries and Violence

(Why Horseshoers Are Always Late)

The horse owner told me she wouldn’t be able to meet me, but that the horse would be tied to the pasture fence. At this point, I should have been suspicious: this was a disasterprone customer. Her horse was well behaved and a delight to shoe, but the owner was dangerous to be around. She invariably knocked over things that scared hell out of every horse in the vicinity, or ran her car into a ditch, or left a gate open for all the horses to escape . . . things like that. One time she only hurt herself. She had forgotten to catch her horse for me, and we had to drive my truck up to the top of a hill where we caught him. She should have ridden him down the hill, but chose instead to pull him beside the truck, while she sat in the cab holding his lead rope in her hand. She hoped the horse would come with us. I recommended against this. All went well until the girl enthusiastically stuck her arm out the window to wave at someone. She waved it right in her horse’s face. The horse, of course, freaked out and pulled back. Instead of letting go of the rope, the girl held on as it sang through her hand. When the pain finally broke through to her disorganized mind, she let go. I stopped the truck and told her to open her hand so I could see the extent of the damage. She wouldn’t open it. Half an hour later, I was able to convince her to open it, both of us expecting a half-inch-deep bloody groove through the middle of her palm. The damage was minimal, however, and I patched it up with my ever-ready first aid kit. Not that it matters in the long run, but all of this cost me an extra hour and caused me to be an hour late to my next appointment where the owner petulantly asked me why it was that horseshoers were always late.

See All Chapters
Medium 9781574413205

The Angelina Cat and Coon Hunting Association: A Sort of Memoir

Edited by Kenneth L. Untiedt University of North Texas Press PDF

7978-ch01.pdf

10/6/11

8:14 AM

Page 59

THE ANGELINA CAT AND COON HUNTING

ASSOCIATION: A SORT OF MEMOIR by John C. Wolf

In 1966, I had just reached my 23rd birthday. Contrary to the expectations of a good many of my high school teachers, I had completed an M.A. degree and had been gainfully employed as a psychologist at a state residential mental health facility in deep East

Texas. Life was good. The future beckoned. The time had come for me to begin to assume my rightful place in the adult world.

Some of the more promising young men were finding their places in that world by joining the Jaycees, while others were joining the local Masonic or Elks Lodge.

Some of my friends from college were continuing their foray into the political world we had begun on campus in the Young

Democrats by becoming actively involved in the County Democratic Party (in those days nobody openly affiliated with the

County Republican Party). As an ex-athlete (defined as one who valiantly attempted successful participation in high school, and even briefly, collegiate athletics), I briefly considered devoting time to recreational league softball and basketball, but was reminded by friends that the only thing worse than being an almost never used substitute in high school was continuing that level of non-participation in places where I had to pay to not play.

See All Chapters
Medium 9781574411607

Part Two Day 5

Geraldine Ellis Watson University of North Texas Press PDF

Reflections on the Neches

Part Two

Day 5

GORE LANDING

River Mile 61

9:48 A.M.

Just above Pearl River Bend was Gore Landing. I got out of the boat here and looked around, but found no evidence that it had once been an active and busy place. It was probably a summer port as the access road is across the multiple drainage pattern from Deserters Baygall and must have been a booger to traverse during wet weather.

Gore Landing Road follows hummocks through the bottom and joins the

Old Maids Road near Gore Cemetery at the edge of the terrace. It then proceeds west along the ridge dividing Deserters Baygall from Round Pond Baygall to the Gore house on the Old Wagon Road where the terrace rises to the upland. The Old Maids Road was named for two sisters, Tina and Lisha Gore.

Never having married, they lived in the family home after their parents died.

I used to stop by and visit them—oh, it must have been in the late 1960s. They lived exactly as their forebears did and in the same house.

The Gore house was set back behind two big live oak trees and a handsplit rail fence, and several big mulberry trees grew along the fence row.

See All Chapters
Medium 9780253346988

4. The Invisible Pass

Abraham Aamidor Indiana University Press ePub

The Great Depression spelled doom for some, opportunity for others. For Chuck Taylor, it was the time of his life. Marquis Converse had lost his company in 1928 after it went into receivership. The company’s failure was linked to an ill-fated effort to market an automobile tire, the “Converse Cord,” which had high production costs, a high failure rate, and many returns from local dealers.

Mitchell B. Kaufman, president and owner of the Hodgman Rubber Co. in Framingham, Massachusetts, bought the firm in 1929, but he sold it to the Stone family—Joseph, Harry K., and Dewey D. Stone—in 1933. The Stone family ran the business for the next thirty-nine years, but in spirit, and in the public’s mind, it was to be Chuck Taylor’s company from then on.

Chuck’s secret was in sales and promotion. Years of touring with the Converse All-Stars basketball squad, making “special appearances” on local hoops teams and glad-handing customers in small-town sporting goods stores, plus his growing number of basketball clinics, were making Chuck a celebrity, albeit a faux celebrity. Converse revamped everything beginning in 1932 to revolve around their new star. The annual Converse Basketball Yearbook, begun in 1922 and enlarged and expanded in 1929, soon began promoting Chuck’s clinics, complete with endorsements from top coaches of the day. Beginning in 1932, Chuck’s name was added to the ankle patch of the All Star shoe for the first time. His well-regarded College All-American picks began that year as well, next to a smiling mug shot that was to become a signature piece over the years. As if to an increasing drumbeat, Chuck was exclusively touted as a veteran of the great pre–modern era basketball teams, as well as an authority who personally knew the top coaches and best players across the country.

See All Chapters
Medium 9781574414615

Going It Alone

Ron Tatum University of North Texas Press ePub

Going It Alone

That experience on the mountain taught me a lesson that comes in handy as a horseshoer. Up there, hanging off the cliff, I was alone. No one was going to save me or get me out of that spot. Just me. Horseshoeing is a lot like that. I don’t mean that shoeing horses is facing death every day, but it’s an occupation that you do mostly by yourself. There is no one to bail you out when you get in trouble. If you run into a seemingly impossible task with no obvious way out, you need to find the way on your own. No one is going to rescue you.

Horseshoers choose to wear no one’s uniform but their own, and those who survive the first year of horseshoeing (70 percent of first-year shoers drop out), prefer it that way. We’re often called independent cusses.

In most occupations there is a continuous system of education, training, and what you might call “mentoring.” A plumber or an electrician will undergo a period of training or education and then will usually go to work in a job where there is ongoing supervision. Once in the field, most workers will learn from their contacts with the boss and from other workers.

See All Chapters

Load more