I went out on the porch awhile ago and was having a conversation with the dogs when a doe walked through the edge of the garden. His hackles on end, Shrek jumped down the steps putting on a display of proud ferocity. The doe stopped walking and stood looking at him with disinterest. Shrek halted short of the defiant deer, confidence waning. After a half minute of indecision, he looked back at me standing on the porch watching and started the heartbroken moaning that only he can do, the shame and embarrassment too much for him to endure. He stumbled back to the porch and climbed the steps his head hanging low. I fetched him a treat and gave him encouragement. I vigorously told him that he was a good boy but he was unconvinced.
Late last night, we had heard an animal sound up in the field. Ian said it sounded like a goat. I took that to mean a doe was talking to a newborn. And as is the case when they have a small fawn, the mothers stop playing the game of politely running a short distance when Shrek tries to impress me. The politics are interesting. A few years ago we had a doe who would actually chase the little dogs if they came too near. She was a hard core good mother.
The first step is to admit I have a problem: I think I’m living in the past. These old Eureka Springs Times-Echo newspapers keep calling to me and I can’t stop looking through their brittle yellow pages. Many of these newspapers date from before my birth and yet so many of the names are familiar; people I’ve heard about my whole life.
The bulk of my habit has been supplied by Kay Kelley. She and Richard had quite a collection of Eureka Springs memorabilia and I was lucky enough to get a couple of boxes of newspapers. Recently, Genevieve Bowman kindly passed along a bundle of old newspapers also. Others have slipped me individual clippings and odds and ends.
Sometimes I read the old newspapers so much that I find I don’t have time to keep up with current news. I may not know much of what is happening today, but I can tell you that LB Wilson scored 23 points in a winning effort for the Highlander boys against Reed Spring on November 17, 1967.
The main photograph on the front page of the November 23, 1967 Eureka Springs Times-Echo is that of the recently completed statue of the American Mastodon at Ola Farwell’s Dinosaur Park near Beaver Dam. I’m sorry that the park is now closed.
Norma Scates column, Busch News, recounts the killing of a tame deer called “John Deer” the second day of hunting season. His bloody collar was found down behind Huffman’s Rock Shop at Busch.
Today, with nearly a thousand killed annually in Carroll County, deer are taken for granted. They are thick everywhere it seems. But in 1967, as the resident deer population was still rebounding, the animal still held novelty value. The 109 hunters that killed deer in Carroll County during the first segment of the November, 1967 season are listed on the front page of the newspaper. Winifred Prior killed a 13 point buck.
Just as now, not everyone welcomed deer hunters on their property. Included in the “No Hunting” classified ads is this one: “Anyone trespassing on my property for any reason does so at his own risk. Mary Jane Fritsch.”
This is the time of year that local hunters head for the deer woods, sometimes even here into this forested hollow. The neighborhood dogs like this as they find pieces of deer that they happily bring home on which to gnaw. Here a happy Dachshund works over a leg.
This dead Eastern Coachwhip snake was found the other day by a neighbor. The neighbor has netting over a row of plants in her garden to keep the deer from nibbling. It looks like the snake got its mouth tangled up in the netting and couldn’t get out.
Yesterday, I was at our neighbor’s and a deer came down the road and crossed into the yard. The deer stopped when it saw our smaller dog, Lewie, and the two stared at each other for a long moment. Then sensing the deer’s presence, Noodles, the dachshund went on the attack with Lewie close behind. The two canines ran at the deer barking, but the deer didn’t run – it lowered its head and ran at the dogs. Bewildered by this odd turn of events, the two dogs stopped until Chandler the bullmastiff came running from another direction and chased away the deer.
Attached is a photograph of the deer chaser himself, Chandler.