True stories of old Houston and Houstonians: historical and personal sketches / by S. O. Young. Page: 124
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124 TRUE STORIES OF OLD
A FAMOUS DEER HUNT.
ORMERLY, in the good old days of the seventies, there was
a much more intimate association between the drummers
and the citizens of the small cities and towns than exists
now. At that time every drummer who traveled in this territory
was as well known to everybody as the residents of the
towns, and met with both a personal and professional welcome
wherever he went. I suspect that there is something of the kind
prevalent today, but it is not so widespread and general as it
was then. The drummers have become more keenly alert to the
business side of their calling and attach less importance to its
social side, while the small towns have become more dignified
and are striving to put on city airs.
The drummer who could tell the best and latest stories or
work off a good practical joke was very popular everywhere,
while the citizen who worked off anything good on a drummer
became famous at once and was the talk of the whole country.
There was one well known drummer who was famous for his
practical jokes and equally famous for his ability to dodge
every trap that was set for him. From Houston to San Antonio
there was not a practical joker who did not lie awake at
night trying to devise some scheme to catch that fellow. He
was finally landed, or rather he landed himself by taking seriously
a joking remark made by Colonel McCarthy of Eagle Lake.
The colonel was a great sportsman and spent his time hunting
and fishing. It was hard to say whether he was the king fisher
or the king hunter, he was so good at both. He rarely went
hunting that he did not come home with a fine deer or other
big game, while his friends used to,say that he could actually
catch fish on dry land where there were no fish.
His constant and never-failing success as a hunter excited suspicion
that he had some secret charm or something of that sort
which gave him an advantage over the ordinary hunter. One
day the colonel drove into town in his hunting wagon having
two large bucks prominently displayed. Just as he passed the
depot the train arrived and our drummer got off. He was delighted
to see such fine game and asked a thousand questions
about how and where the colonel had killed them. The colonel
made no secret of where he had killed them, but he was less
communicative about how he had done so. The drummer insisted
on knowing, so, finally, the colonel, never dreaming that
he would be taken so seriously, agreed to tell him, provided he
would never reveal it to any one.
"If it got out," said the colonel, "there would be no deer left,
for it is so simple that'even the boys can work it, and the deer
would be exterminated." The drummer swore by everything holy,
and unholy, too, that he would never tell, so the colonel gave him
the great secret.
"You must know," said he, "that deer have more curiosity
than any of the wild animals. They will run away from anything
that scares them, but if there is anything mysterious about it
Here’s what’s next.
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Young, Samuel Oliver. True stories of old Houston and Houstonians: historical and personal sketches / by S. O. Young., book, 1913; Galveston, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth24646/m1/124/: accessed May 26, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; .