Friday, October 7, 2016

Yet Another Fishing Story and Whiskey by the Pound

Lawrence County News February 19, 1931

The Sons of Rest, a local organization with an honorable record of achievement, has been dissolved by mutual consent of the members and a new organization has been perfected. The first meeting was held last week and from all indications the name when adopted will be “The Tall Story Club.“

 The sudden cold snap caused the members of the old organization to seek warmer quarters and they gravitated to various places around the square. One group gathered around the stove in a well known place of business near the square and after getting comfortably arranged, pipes filled and everything, the talk naturally turned to the weather, One grizzled old veteran of many a hard -fought talking contest took a fresh hitch in his belt, pushed the ashes down in his pipe and unburdened himself in the following vein:

“This winter minds me of the winter of '68 or maybe it was '72. Anyway that winter it was mild up to about the first of February. I remember I killed a hog on January 14 and it spoiled before I could get it cut up. I recollect seeing the cows standing in the crick  with their tongues hanging out on the 16th of January and the trees began to leaf out and the birds to build their nests. I went to church barefooted and several people were sunstruck at a baptizing they had at Injun Creek. 

But along the first week of February the dangest blizzard that ever struck the county swept over our neighborhood. It turned cold all of a sudden and old Ike Batt who was fishing in Swan Pond was caught in an awful picklement. He had an eight pound catfish on his line and was pulling him out when the blizzard struck. 

Well sir, believe it or not, that water froze so quick that the fish was caught just half out of the water and there it stuck in the ice and stayed until April with its head and half of its body sticking up out of the ice. 

I recollect Old Joe Spivins was running a still down near the crick and he had three or four barrels of whiskey on hand. Every darned one of them froze up solid. We used to buy it off him by the pound and guess at the weight then we’d chaw on the stuff till we got pretty tight. It was mighty deceiving, as old parson Sam found out. He chawed a little mite too much ice just before he went to preach and got drunkr’n than a billed owl. Yes sir, it sure was cold”.