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History Monday: Trip down Crocus and up Sand Lick from 1915

Dr. J.T. Jones takes a trip down Crocus and up Sand Lick, visiting and pondering...

By Mike Watson

The following is an extract taken from a lengthy letter to the Adair County News from Dr. J.T. Jones, dentist, who had been on a sojourn in 1915. Dr. Jones resided for some years at Montpelier and later near Columbia. He was best known for his professions and also for his stories and poetry printed in the pages of the News. In more recent times, he may be remembered as the grandfather of Miss Margaret Clayton, Mrs. Marian Clayton Vance, and others. (Adair County News, 17 May 1916)
"...It has been well said that man made the town and God made the country, and He certainly displayed most artistic handiwork when he made Crocus Creek and its tributaries. Here we were again impressed with the shortness of our fleeting span of life for there from the mouth of Burns' Creek I viewed three fertile farms upon which I had made teeth for the wives of Joe Turner, Woodie Petty, Larkin Strange, and two others, ladies, and all but one long since dead.

"Nestling among verdant hills and productive valleys is a modern church by the wayside where the old log house, Republican, stood in which away back, many years ago, I use[d] to hear Isaac T. Remean, Andrew P. Davis, Caleb Sewell, William Simpson expound the ancient Gospel in its primitive purity and simplicity, who, being men of faith, have long since entered their reward.

"Then the scene changed to the beautiful little stream that flows along the sweet scented banks of Sand Lick. When about a mile above the mouth, we heard a noise almost directly overhead, as of some mighty monster preparing to pounce upon the unprotected person of your precious correspondent, but soon realized that it was the whistling of a boat blowing for Winfrey's Ferry, not more than three miles away, where we had heard them blow with the same melancholy chorus for 29 years...

"We were royally entertained at the pleasant home of Mr. Bart Hadley, by Bart and his big hearted boy, Ernest, who always render all needed assistance on all occasions. Mr. Bart Hadley is a cousin of my old friend, Rev. Thomas Hadley, the mountain evangelist, with whom I have whiled away happy hours when we were boys...After 3 days at Mr. Hadley's, in which the grippe symptoms greatly subsided, and the old machine was running better in every part, I imbibed freely of the life-giving fluid, throwing up freely, felt convalescent next morning..."

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