Tape 32 transcript
June 1978 Interview about Everett & Grace Porter’s wedding day
JC: Maybe someday my grandchildren will listen to this.
Grace: Your grandchildren? (laughing) Maybe your children. I don’t know about your grandchildren.
There was an awful snow on that day, I know, we liked to have a wreck.
JC: That was January, right?
G: 16th of January
Everett : 1929.
Grace: You got it on there now? (referring to the tape recorder)
Grace: (laughing) Ya, we just about went in the ditch. We did go in the ditch didn’t we Everett ?
Everett : Ya, we went in the ditch (laughing)
JC: was that before you got married?
G: No afterwards, we was on our way back. Everett kept telling them we got a taxi to take us over there, we was on our way back.
Laurel ’s husband, you know, Talmadge Kegley. We told him to slow down, it was slick
E: It was sleeting.
G: We slid twice, I think and went in the ditch and then he said there was some boys walking along the road and he said,
“Come here and give us a push and we’ll let you ride.” They said, “Well we’ll give you a push, but we don’t want a ride.”
Said, we don’t want a ride. And so they pushed out, and he slowed down.
JC: Where did you get married at?
G: Courthouse at Grayson. My sister went with us, she was a witness and I reckon it was __________ wife was a witness.
What was her name, her name was…
JC: They probably have that over there on record then.
E: Oh ya, they’ve got it on record there. Yes sir.
G: What was her name?
G; What was her name as a witness? It’s on the marriage certificate.
E: I don’t remember. The preacher was Lonnie Deaver
G: Lonnie Deaver was the preacher, but I thought it was Arthur Jarvis’ wife.
E: Arthur Jarvis’ wife was on there.
G: I believe it was Arthur Jarvis’ wife.
JC: When did you two meet?
G: When’d we two meet. (laughing)
G: Oh, about 5 years before that, I guess. 5 year or more.
G: You said you seen me going to school, the first time you ever saw me. (laughing)
E: Seen her coming. I said to Henry Bradley, “Who is that girl?” He said, “That’s Steve Erwin’s girl.” I said, “I’d like to have her for my wife,
I believe.” That is ________. I never thought about that one.
JC: How old were you then?
G: He would have been about 19, I guess. He was 24 when we was married. He was 24 and I was 22.
JC: Did they get married that old back then. didn’t they get married younger?
E: Well, if they could get anybody that would have them, they would get married younger. If they couldn’t, they’d have to wait till they were 24, 25.
You know, I had to wait.
JC: How long did you date before you got married?
E: About 5 years, I guess.
JC: Oh, you dated all that time.?
G: No, we was quit once. We was quit once for over a year.
JC: What took so long?
G: Some talks longer than others.
E: Back then, you had to walk to see your girl. Did’t have no cars to drive in. Walk and wade in mud about halfway to your knees part of the time.
Lot different than what it is now. When you come, you had to stay for a right smart bit, because you didn’t get to come back for a while.
Couldn’t see em every night…
JC: How far away did she live?
G: We lived right down here where Opal (McKenzie) lives, course the house burnt, you know.
E: About 2 miles and a half…
G: He lived up Dry Branch. You know where Boone (his brother Boone Porter) lives up there? You don’t know where Boone lives.
I thought you know’d where Boone Porter lives.
JC: I’m not sure.
G: On up above where Wallace’s place was. (Wallace Erwin?)
E: Ya, it’s about 2 mile and a half up there, from here. Good old days is a way, and in other ways, they was rough.
E: Had a mule and a salt wagon or we’d walk, and I done a lot of walking. Didn’t have the mule or salt wagon, then you’d walk.
JC: You lived over there, where they moved to when they came from Virginia , the Porters?
E: Tick Ridge is where we lived. You mean where our ancestors came from?
JC: Ya, where’d you dad come from?
G: I believe I’ll call down there to Ed’s and tell them you got here.
E: Johnson county.
JC: Johnson county? Virginia, or Kentucky ?
E: I’ve heard Dad tell about it.
JC: Was it grayson county? Grayson county Virginia?
E: I don’t think it was virginina. Seems like it was Johnson county Kentucky.
JC: Did he live there at one time, Johnson county, KY.
JC: Your dad.
JC: His dad did?
JC: Well who lived in Johnson county KY ?
E: I don’t know that they ever lived there.
JC: I called Harlan Porter, and he said that they came from grayson co. VA.
E: Grayson co VA?
E: Well, he’s probably know.
JC: I found them in the census. they lived there in 1850 and 1860 census.
E: Harlan would know more about that than I would.
JC: Andrew Porter had 9 kids in 1860.
E: Andrew Porter, my great grandfather.
JC: I’ve got some records in here, I’ll show them to you.
Interview with Everett Porter (son of Jasper, son of Alexander, son of Andrew J. Porter) (Interviewed by J.C. Porter - 11-21-79)
J.C.: Tell me your life story
Everett: My life story? Gee-oh. You mean how mean I was and everything?
E: Noooo. I don’t want nobody to know. (laughing)
J.C.: Let’s see. You were born in Elliot County, right?
E: I was born in Elliot County. I reckon. You know where Shady Grove is? I was born back in there - back in Shady Grove.
Clark Hill or somewhere. I don’t even remember.
J.C. - That’s where your parents (Jasper & Sena Hall Porter) lived when you were born? You weren’t raised there?
E: No. I wasn’t raised there. I was raised in Smokey, back yonder. In Carter County. I went to Sheep Skin School, the first school I ever went to.
J.C. - Sheep Skin School?
E: Laughing. Yeah.
J.C.: What’s that?
It was a school back there on the ridge. About half of the scholars come out of Elliott County and the rest of ‘em out of Carter -
come to the Sheep Skin School.
I went there the first year I went. I don’t know, might have went two years there. I don’t remember just when -
they finally moved us out of there and I went then to Union School about a year or two and then they changed it again and I went to Leatherwood School.
J.C.: Is that where they chased you off? Two boys tried to beat you up or that was your Dad (Jasper Porter) -
he ran as hard as he could to get away from em.
E: I don’t remember about that. They had no record of that at Grayson. I don’t know. The courthouse got burned at Sandy Hook.
That sheep Skin School could have been in Sandy Hook up there in Elliot County but it got burnt and burnt all of their papers up
and everything and when I went to get my records and things, I went to Grayson to pick all that up and they didn’t have any record
of it at all, so it must have been recorded at Sandy Hook. They picked me up on Tick Ridge. That’s all the record they could find on me.
I don’t know what happened when I went to Union there.
J.C. : How far did you go in school?
E: I think 5th grade.
J.C.: What d’ya quit for?
E: You’d know why I quit for if you’d been back there in them days walkin’ about 4 miles to school and it rainin’ and bad weather and all.
It wadn’t like walkin’ out here and gettin’ on a school bus and ridin’ to school and gettin’ off and goin’ in and then comin’ back out and
gettin’ on a school bus and comin’ back home. We’d have to walk - a whole bunch of kids would have to walk - I guess between 3 and 4 mile -
through the woods and fields and things and it’d come a rain and we’d be as wet as a bunch of rats. We didn’t have the privilege of getting
an education like they do now because we had a hard time.
J.C.: What was it, a one room school?
E: Yeah. Mm hmm.
G: That’s all they had back at that time.
J.C.: And you went 1st - 5th grade?
E: 5th grade was all that you went!
J.C.: It was?
E: Yeah. And that little school. You had to go to high school if you went higher than that, you see.
J.C.: Did anybody else that lived around you go to high school?
G: They didn’t have high school back then, did they Everett?
E: Yeah. They did. They had high school at Olive Hill, now, but them country schools was all I went to. Tick Ridge and Smiths run.
J.C.: None of your brothers and sisters graduate from high school?
J.C.: Geneva (dau. of Jasper Porter) didn’t either?
E: There was very few graduated back then in my town back there. We was growin up back there and the next generation began to come on.
G: Where’d Geneva go to school up there, Soldier? No, it was Dry Branch, wasn’t it?
E: They went to Dry Branch to school.
G:Right there in that house right before Francis (dau. of Jasper Porter) lives - where ?? And Burchett lives.
J.C.: Do you remember that log school over by Jacobs where Uncle Everett (son of Alex, son of AJP) went?
He said he went to school in a log school house over by Jacobs and Andy Porter (son of Jim, son of AJP) was his teacher.
E: You’re getting back too far for me. I don’t know anything about that. I never went there and even the log school house
was tore down before I can remember. I don’t remember the log school house. That Rock Spring School was a log school -
that’s where Dad (Jasper) went to school.
J.C.: Oh, it was?
E: Right up above Harlan’s (son of Alex, son of AJP) there, you know.
G: Did you ever go to Will Underwood’s to school?
E: No, Dad (Jasper) went to Will Underwood when he was teaching. Dad said the boys run Will off when he was teachin.
J: Run the teacher off? Why?
E: They was mean! If they wanted to do something, they just told him to get out of that holler -
just give him two minutes and half of his time was already up and said he just grabbed his dinner bucket
and took off and never did come back. They sent ‘em an old man up there to teach the school.
Dad (Jasper) said he was a rough blooded fella. He come in and said “Boys - I come to teach the school
and I’m gonna teach it! You ain’t a runnin’ me off. He tuck a big ol’ knife out of his pocket and laid
it up on the table and he said “if I have to fight it out with my fist, I can do it. I’ll fight it out with you.
He said, “I’ll cut it out with ya” and he had a big ol’ gun and laid it out up there and said “I’ll shoot it out with ya.”
He said “But I’m gonna teach the school if I stay here. He said “They may take me outta here with my toes stickin’ up,
but you’re not runnin’ me off. Boy he said you could hear a pin drop on the floor. There was fellas going there 20 years old or more.
When Will was teachin’ they got out there and shot in a bush while he was tryin’ to teach school and then they told Will
he just had so many minutes to get out of that holler. Then they sent that guy up there. Dad (Jasper) said they never run that guy off.
That guy sat down when he first went in and he said “Well, I’m a gonna make a rule. If I have to whip a fella,
I’m goin’ home with him to stay all night so he don’t tell no lie on me or nothin’. I’m going to tell his Daddy about why
I had to whoop him and stay all night with him. I don’t want him going to misrepresent the thing. Dad (Jasper) said
he done something and he whooped him. He said “he ain’t going home with me!” As soon as school was dismissed he (Jasper)
jumped up and he took off as far as he could run and run off and left him. He said when the other kids come in from school,
here come the old teacher. He said “Mr. Porter (Alex), I had to whoop your boy today. Said “I have a rule that if I have to
whoop one of ‘em, I go home with ‘em to stay all night, so I come over to stay all night and tell ya how it happened.” and
Grandpa (Alex) said, “That’s exactly what he needed. If he needs a whoopin’, he needs a whoopin’ and he said I made a rule
that if one of em went to school and got a whoopin and I find out, I give ‘em another one. He went and got a switch and
whooped him again (laughing) Grandpa (Alex) whooped him. He said he didn’t get nary other whoopin’ for awhile - he didn’t
want no more. He said, “the teacher come to stay all night and grandpa whooped him again - that was enough!”
J: Was that that same teacher that had a gun and a knife?
E: Yeah. That there mean fella.
J.C.: What school was that at?
E: That was Rock Springs.
J: And that was over by Jacobs?
E: That was right up the holler from Harlan’s there, just a little piece.
Dad said them boys would get out there and them fellas would come along ridin’ on the road over there by the school
and them boys would throw rocks at em and yell, “School butter, chickens flutter, rotten eggs for all you fellers”
and then they’d just take off and run. One day this feller come along and he got back there and rared back on his horse
and they said “school butter, chickens flutter, rotten eggs for all you fellers.” He kicked his horse.
Then they already made it up that the next one to come along they’d throw him right in the creek.
So some of em got down there by the road when recess or something was going on and when somebody’d come along,
them fellers up there would holler at em down there and them boys would jump out and catch his horse.
This one feller come along and they hollered down the road - he took off just a flyin on that horse and
they hollered “catch him down there” - a whole bunch of boys just run out into the road and they stopped him.
They stopped his horse and grabbed him and throwed him right down into the creek.
A rough bunch over there, I guess. 20 or 21 years over there goin’ to school.
J.C.: How high did your dad (Jasper) go in school?
E: I don’t know how far he got. He was like the rest of us and didn’t go very high, I don’t guess.
Your education back then didn’t amount to so much like it does now. Anybody could hoe corn or dig a ditch or something.
That’s about all we had to do. Now, you see, if you get a job now, you’ve got to have an education.
Back then you dug ditches or something or cut sprouts or chopped wood or somethin and it didn’t take much education to do that.
That’s about all you needed to have about all the work there was, you know. You didn’t have to sign anything.
No red tape for your job back then, if you got a job. They put you to work right then. No you have to go through a big
lot of red tape, you know. Go and get a doctor examination and so on and so forth and you didn’t do that back then.
You’d just go and if they wanted to hire you, they’d just put you to work. If they wanted to fire you, they’d just say
“you’re fired” and pay you off and you’re done.
J.C.: Grandpa was fairly well educated wasn’t he?
E: Well, he probably had a little better education than some of the boys, I don’t know.
Now Sam (son of Alex, son of AJP) made a school teacher. That’s the only one in the whole bunch that made a school teacher, I think.
Sam, he taught our school. I went to school with him on Tick Ridge, there. I know one time he ??? I flipped a paper wad across -
I sat on one side of the school house and this girl sat on the other side - right straight across from me.
I’d write a little note and I’d wad it up pretty tight and flip it across and she’d catch it. Then she’d read it and then she’d
write a note and answer and she’d flip it back. And we got to doin’ that and he noticed it. One time I flipped the note
across there and he run back there and said “gimme that” and I said “No, don’t you do that. Don’t you let him have it.” and he took it.
So he tuck it. He read that note and he said, “Boy, this is the best one I’ve ever seen and I want to whole school to hear this.”
and he read it to the whole school.
J.C.: He was your uncle, wasn’t he?
G: We got his picture in there with some other school teachers, in there on the wall.
J.C.: Who was the girl you were flippin’ notes to?
E: Edra Kelly, I believe. I’m not so sure. That was one of ‘em anyway. I guess I flipped several of ‘em.
J.C.: What did you do with yourself after you were out of school?
E: I went to work as a rock crusher - about the first job I ever had. Down the other side of Olive Hill there.
J: How old were you then?
E: I must have been about 16 - 16 or 17 years old.
J: How long did you work there?
E: Oh, not very long. I don’t remember. Then I think I went up to West Virginia and worked in the coal mines.
I was about 17 when I went to work in West Virginia.
J:Where at in W.V?
E: UP to Logan and then I went up to Monaville. It was about 6 miles above Logan.
J: How long were you up there?
E: I didn’t stay up there for very long. I went to Pine Grove Mine and worked over there for awhile.
J: How’d you happen to go to Logan? Did you know anybody there?
E: No I didn’t know anybody, I went over there to the mine. They were minin’ coal over there and a fella could go get a job in the mine.
J: You didn’t go by yourself did you?
E:I think me and Willard Jarvis went. I don’t know if Les was with us that time or not. We didn’t work very long.
We come back and then went back and Everett, my uncle, was working with Jerry Douty over here layin track with timbers
and we moved from Tick Ridge up to Dry Branch at that time, so Everett wanted to get off of that trackin’ timber and
I’d come back from up there and I wasn’t workin’ anywhere then and he asked Jerry to let him off of that there -
he wanted moved to loadin’ clay. Them fellers was makin’ big money and he wanted to get into that. Jerry said
“I can’t let you off cuz’ I ain’t got nobody to track timber.” He said “I’ll get you a man that can do that - a man right out of the coal field”
J: Yeah. And he got you.
E: He said “if you can get me a man that can do the job, I’ll let you off”. Everett come over there to see if I wanted
to take the job and told me “I’ll get you a job now if you want it.” I said “Yeah, I’ll try it”. So that’s how I got my
job trackin’ timber for Jerry Douty. I worked a long time for Jerry. Then I went to the mine and worked there for awhile
and then went to the Hayward brickyard and got me a job up there. I got me a job wheelin’ - that was the hardest job - wheelin’ bricks.
I was workin’ there when Grace and me got married.
J: How many hours a day did you have to work?
E: 8 hours
J: 6 days a week?
Yeah. I worked at the brickyard 10 hours, though. Well, the mines - let’s see - the first mine that I done was 10 hours and
then went to the brickyard and it was 10 hours. I reckon’ all the work I done was 10 hours. I went to work at 6 o’clock in
the morning and worked til 4:30 in the evening. Had my hour for dinner. Yeah, I guess it was all 10 hours at the brickyard and minin’.
Course we didn’t work - we’d get off when the miners all got their shift in. When they’d get done and quit then the mule boys would come out,
but they was all getting paid for 10 hours but they’d come out and whenever they’d quit we’d quit and sometimes it would be 1:00
but we’d get paid for 10 hours because we stayed there and worked. When the mule boys would come out and made their last pull
and everything, the track man, the timber man, the gin hands and all would come on out and all quit.
J: You were 24 when you got married, weren’t you?
G: No, you were 24 and me 22.
E: Well, I was born in 19 and 4 and we were married in 29 - that’s 25.
G: January 29. You wouldn’t have been 25 until July.
E: Yeah, I wadn’t hardly 25. About 24 ½ (laugh).
J: How come you waited so long to get married?
E: Well, it took me a long time to talk her into the notion. (all laughing) She didn’t say yes the first time.
J: She didn’t? Well what did she say?
E: NO! (Laughing) We had to talk it all over again. I don’t know what I done. It took me 5 years from the time I first started talkin’
to her until we got married. She like to never... I thought sure I was gonna have to try somethin’ else. (laughing...)
J: So where’d you live when you first got married?
G: We lived with Mom
E: We lived down there with her mother - how long, 2 or 3 years?
G: More than 2 or 3 years - we had the two boys and it was in October before Doris was born when we started building.
E: Then I built my house down there and we starved around there. In 1930, on my birthday, I went to work for General Refractories.
G: That was the brickyard company. Doris was a baby.
E: I went to work for the mining department and they built this road. They brought a steam shovel in here and I went
and worked on the steam shovel - got a job on the steam shovel. We built that road - Smith’s Run Road from up at Smith’s Run
mine up there where they had the mine. We built that road and I stayed on that road a big part of the time - we grazed that
and kept it grazed and then I’d go back when we got the road all graded up, I’d go back to the mine and work up there.
Then we got on the drill and I worked all over the country on the drill - over at Grahn and Cristy Creek and around.
J.C.: How long did you work for them?
E: 11 years Then I went into the saw mill business and got rich. (Laugh)
G: That was when your Dad (Don Porter) was a boy - he could tell you about that.
J: Yeah, he told me he worked for you for what - a quarter an hour?
E: I don’t know what I paid him - $2.00 a day, wasn’t it?
J: Well, that would be a quarter an hour.
E: He wanted to buy him a car. I said when you get old enough I’ll help you a car. You’re not old enough yet.
He said “Yeah, he was, too” So he went up to the Perry boys and bought him an old car and brought it down there.
I had all kind of parts in there from old cars. I had my grist mill in there and I’d quit running the grist mill
and the parts from a bunch of junk set in there. He took that old car and it didn’t have no clutch and he couldn’t
throw it out of gear. The clutch wouldn’t release on it and it’d stay in gear all the time - he’d give it a shiv.
He’d get him a bunch of boys and away they’d go - they was over in Soldier one day - got over there and run it over
the bank and he couldn’t get it out hardly and was havin’ a time trying to get it out - Tuck Moreland- He come along -
he was the deputy sherriff. And he knew Don. He said “Whose car is that Porter?” and Don didn’t have no license, you know.
He said, “I don’t know whose it is”. (Tuck Moore left) Don said “boys, we have to get this thing out of here or he’ll
come back and haul it off”. And they all got in there and pushed and pushed it out. When they got it in gear, they gave it
a shove - he come back across the hill there and back down Dry Branch and put it in the garage just as soon as he got over here.
He didn’t get it out no more - it scared him out, ya know. So he sold it for junk. To the Cash boys. Harlan and them.
So he went back up to Perry and bought him another one - bought him an old Dodge. He’d go over to Limestone to church over there -
some little old girl over there he wanted to go over and see. He’d go over there to the Pentecost church.
One night he’d been over there to church and he come back down the road. Frodes, the preacher that was down at the
Nazarene Church - he’d been up after church was over - he’d took some people back towards Limestone home.
He was comin’ back down the road and he said he heard something going TOOT TOOT TOOT.
He got around and here come that old Dodge just a flyin’ Said he lost control of it just a little bit down the road.
He had a jeep - Frodes did. Said he seen that Dodge zig back across the road a time or two and he said Over the bank it went.
It went right over in a culvert over there - right over into Albert Mundy’s bottom and turned over on it’s side.
He stopped back there and jumped out and Don come crawlin’ up out of it over on it’s side and he said “are you hurt?”
and he said “No, I’m not hurt” and he said “Whose boy are you?” He said “Everett Porter’s” He said “well, I know him. H
e’ll be up at Garvin Ridge Church - there havin’ a revival up there - he’ll be up there yet, I’ll take you up there.
So he left his old car layin’ there and got in with him and he brought him up there. When we come out of church he was sittin’ there.
And I said “Well, when did you come?” and he said “a few minutes ago” and I said “where’s your car?” and he said layin’ down
there in Al Mundy’s bottom. I said “well, that’s a good place for it. Won’t run over nobody or get somebody hurt.
You’re going to get somebody killed - you ain’t got no driver’s license. I never even went over there to help him get it out or nothin.
He just let it lay there. I tried to get him to get it, so I thought it was better layin’ over there than it was out on the road,
so he come on back home with me. Left his car over there. I never said “we’ll go get it or nothin” It wasn’t worth $50.
He gave $50 for it but it wasn’t worth it, I don’t guess. He went and got Farrell (s/o Jasper, s/o Alex, s/o AJP).
Farrell had an old Ford over about Soldier somewhere and tore the rear end out of it. He told Farrell to come and help him get his car out.
Farrell said “the backend is out of my car” He said “Dad’s got some down there - we can get one of them” I don’t know when they come down there -
night or day - I don’t know when they got it. Farrell he got Roy’s (s/o Jasper, s/o Alex, s/o AJP) car up there and come
down there and him and Donald (s/o Everett, s/o Jasper, s/o Alex, s/o AJP) got that rear end out of the garage and put it
in Roy’s car and they put it in the back end of that thing someway. I don’t know how in the world they ever got it in there.
It stuck out. The drive shaft part, it stuck out there about 2 or 3 foot. They just pulled the door to agin’ that and tied it
or somethin’ another and took off up Dry Branch just as hard as they could go. They got up there on Dry Branch somewhere and got it
caught on a bush or somethin over on the side of the road and just tore it off and they took them posts up out of there and got it
back in there and tied it back and went on and tuck it over there and got that old car fixed that he had and went and got his car
out of there and brought it back over here and a few days after that I was over there at the garage and I missed that rear end -
the whole thing was tuck loose there. And I thought “now what do you think happened to that” then I thought about them guys buying
that old car for scrap and I thought “now they’ve got that I betcha” I said to Don, “Don, do you know them boys musta tuck that rear end”
I said “it’s gone - reckon they’ve stold that?” He said “Nah, Dad, they wouldn’t a done that, he said” and I said “I know it’s gone -
somebody come in there and got that” Well, he didn’t tell me he got it, ya know. And one day Jim Bolan come along and I was sittin
there filin a saw. I listened at him and they were havin’ a row. They were about to get into a fight. Jim said “If you don’t watch it,
I’m gonna tell your Dad about your stealin’ that rear end” I heard him, but I didn’t say a word - just kept workin’ on the saw.
One day, I said “why did you lie about that rear end?” and he said he didn’t know nothin’ about it.
I said “I heard Jim tell you that he was gonna tell me. You’ve got it, I know you’ve got it.” He said “Yeah, yeah, I’ve got it”.
I’d have let him have it - he shouldn’t have stole it, he should have asked for it. He said “Well, I have to get it fixed.”
J.C.: What’s some of the pranks your dad (Jasper) always played on people? What about when he pretended he was dead and he put pennies on his eyes?
E: Yeah. I wasn’t there, but I heard them talkin’ about it. Some of them come in and he seen em comin’ and he laid the pennies on his eyes
and pretended he was dead. I heard some of them laughing about it, but didn’t know much about it.
J: What about him eatin’ a bunch of eggs or something?
E: I heard em laughin about that, too.
Everett Porter partial interview 1979 (s/o Jasper, s/o Alex, s/o AJP)
About eating so many eggs.
I heard em laughing about him (Jasper) and uncle Boone Walker. They were down in town and bought them a stalk of bananas, that was getting pretty ripe.
they were going to have to sell them pretty quick. they just went together and bought the whole stalk. They used to bring them in on the stalk
like that you know. They’d just pull them off and they would go to getting ripe pretty quick.
They was coming back, Dad was just peeling the bananas and eating them. I don’t know how many he had eat. Dad told this too.
Boone said, I guess we better divide these hadn’t we? Dad had eaten a whole bunch of them. ( Everett laughing)
J: He had already eaten a bunch of them before they divided them?
He wasn’t afraid of nothing. I’ve been out with him at night. He wasn’t afraid of anything, I don’t reckon.
J: He wasn’t?
E: No, you couldn’t scare him. We come along, I was just a little boy, wasn’t very big. And we come along at that Sheep Skin school
I was telling you about____________
right above there. there was a woods on both sides of the road and there was a graveyard
on the right side as you went up through there from the school. County road ran around that way. And there was some graves in there.
It was a scary lookin place too, dark. One night me and him come along there and we got up there right in that darkest place right in there,
the graveyard right over there. Charlie, he was afraid to go through there. Charlie Porter was, he was scared to death of that place.
We got up there and we could see something white. Pretty dark that night. Moon shining just a little, out through that timber,________________.
Pretty dark, but you could see something white in there. I didn’t know it was right in where Charlie had seen
some big, he thought it was foxfire. _______________ Him and dad came back the next morning. He stayed all night with us that night, Charlie did.
Over on Sinkin.
It was that same place where me and him come along there you know, and boy I was scared. And he (Jasper) didn’t seem to be scared a bit.
I said “Daddy, there’s something out there.” He said, “We’ll find out what it is.” And he just kept a walkin right on up there, and there
stood a big black horse, standing right across the road. And walked right on up there and there was a man laying there with a white shirt on, drunk.
Laying there, and that horse standing there, across the road with that feller a laying there drunk. Dad said, “It’s a man.”
Got right up over him and said, “He’s drunk, I guess, he’s not dead.”
He examined him or something and said, “He is still alive.”
J: So what did he do?
E: We just went on and left. We never did know who it was.
J: Left him laying there huh?
E: Man I wouldn’t have went up there and seen who it was. I was just a boy.
Now that is the same place there, Charlie was coming over, we lived over there on Sinkin…
Grace: You want something to eat J.C.?, before you go to bed.
E: Charlie was coming over there, that was dad’s brother you know. He was coming over there to the house one night…
G: What time did you say you started this morning?
J: About 7:00 .
E: …after dark, and we was up at the barn, me and him was. That was above the house there.
Where the road come around the ridge and down over the hill. We heard the horses feet, and boy they were flying around there.
Dad said, “Listen to that horses feet.”
And we stood there, we had a lantern. We had been up to the barn feeding. And dad said, “Listen to that horses feet.”
That horse is flying. Man he was running around that ridge. And when he got around to where he seen our light over there,
a right smart little piece across the highway from where we was at you know. He screamed,( it was Charlie.)
“Stay there with that light,” he said. Dad said, “That’s Charlie.” Said there is something bad wrong over _________ somewhere.
He wouldn’t be running that horse like that.
And lord that horses feet came on around that ridge . He had to come way around that ridge and down the road to where we lived.
And that horses feet, man, it was just a hitting that _____, it was flying. He said, “He’s running that horse right down that hill!.”
We got out of the way, out of the road so he wouldn’t run over us. He come right down that hill on that horse and the horse went
trying to stop and he went right on over his head. (laugh) and hit the ground. He just jumped up and took to the house, and left his horse,
and dad grabbed his horse. Hooked his horse up and we went on up to the house and Dad said, “What’s wrong.”
Man, he said, “I seen something back there!, at that graveyard.” He said, “It had eyes, oh lord like you never seen!”
Dad said,”We’ll let’s go back and see what it was.” He said, “Nooo, I wouldn’t go back there for nothing! And he stayed all night.
He went to bed and stayed all night. Dad went and put his horse up, he wouldn’t even get out. Put his horse up and fed him.
He stayed all night, and the next morning, him and Dad , Dad went with him and he said, “We’ll find out what that______was.
Dad said it was an old skunk. Other than it had foxfire on it.
J: What is foxfire?
E: Foxfire is something that shines in the night ya know. In the dark you can see that foxfire. It glistens.
He said it had foxfire on it, and that was all it was. He had lost his hat. His hat had flew off just after he had left there.
He didn’t want anybody to get his hat. Dad said he hat was laying there in the road the next morning when they got down there the next morning..
They went on down there and Charlie said right over in there somewhere. Dad said there was an old stump that had foxfire in it.
said he know’d that’s what it was. But I don’t know.
E: You better turn this thing off.
J: What for?
E: I’m done. (laughing)
J: Your done? I’ve got to think of some more questions for you.
E: Grandpa Porter. Don will whoop me if you play this tape for them.
J; He would?
E: Ya. He wouldn’t want Peg to know he was a mean boy up here..
J: Your grandpa had a blacksmith shop at one time you said, didn’t you?
E: A Blacksmith shop?
G; Black smith shop. Had a Blacksmith shop didn’t he dad?
E: Dad (Jasper) had a Blacksmith shop
J: Your dad?
J: But your grandpa didn’t?
J: Your grandpa didn’t?
E: I don’t know, he night have had one…
G: You want to eat something JC?
J: No, not right now.
E: Dad, he always kept a Blacksmith shop, Dad did.
J: Where did your Dad have it, at his house?
E: Ya, he built it his self. when we lived up on tick Ridge he had a little shop there. Ane when we come up on Dry Branch, he built a shop up there.
J: Did people come by and have him do work for them?
J:Did they pay him money?
J: Did a lot of people come by?
E: Ya. Shod horses a lot. I shod horses. I shod em all day long there.
J: You have?
E: One right after another. That was the big thing back then. About the only thing you could get to make any money right quick.
blacksmith shop, you would sharpen old plows
and drive shoes on horses and ________ livestock, make wagons, just done everything!
Feller come along with his wagon broke down, we would build him a wheel or anything. That would give us a little bit of money you know.
J: Where did you get your horseshoes to put on horses?
E: We ordered em. I’d buy em. I bought em by the keg. Different size shoes you know, and I’d buy a whole bunch, maybe 3 or 4 kegs.
100 pounds per keg. They didn’t last long, I’d nail them on and________
G: Then he had a Blacksmith shop right along down here, didn’t you.
.E: Right down there.
G: Wood shed of a thing.
J: What did they have to have shoes on them for?
E: .Well their feet wear out! If you are working a horse with no shoes on him, his feet would roll up and wear out.
You have to put iron shoes, nail em on. His hoof wouldn’t grow. That shoe would just hold it. He’d have a big hoof on him after a
while if you didn’t take that shoe off of him and trim it down. We called it resetting.
J: You grind the bottom of the hoof off?
E: We used to take a draw knife and cut it off. Shave it off you know. Got it down to where we could nail the shoe on.
And you nail the shoe on, you have a small foot then
and we put a new pair of shoes on a horse when the shoes wear half out his foot would be grown way out there we would have to pull
the shoe off called resettin, pull the shoe off and trim his foot back again and then nail the shoe back on.
J: They can’t feel that?
E: By that time you bout wear them plum out. One time resettin shoe bout wears them out.
G: You know Doris and Royse have been married 27 years in March.
J: They were?
G; Ya, the 26th.
E: We’d weld a toe on that shoe for wintertime. Course for plowing and working in the field we’d use old shoes you know.
In the wintertime, we would take them and weld great big long toes and draw them way out there.
For them to pull. they would get right up on them toes and push them toes right down in the ground, and man they would just hang on a slick place.
Then we drove frost nails in the plain shoes that didn’t have toes on em. We’d drive them there ice nails in each side of them that way.
they could walk on the ice.
A lot of people come along, it’d be a cold freezing time of ice, They’d come along, “I want some ice nails in the shoes”.
You’d go around there and pull about 2 out of each side, and put those big ice nails in there. All around him. He was rough then.
He was ready to go on.
J: Did you ever go to church at this Old Fairview Church over hear?
E: Ya when I was just little I did.
J: Who was the preacher then? John?
E: Oh different ones, I don’t remember who was. That’s where uncle Steve preached you know. He built that church I guess.
That church that is there now, uncle Steve helped build it I guess. Uncle Steve, and grandpa (Alexander).
G; Last time they had church up there was your dad’s funeral. January 44.
J: That old one that is falling apart up there?
E: That was the last service they had up there was Dad’s funeral.
E: I know Charlie put hay in it. It’s got hay in it yet I guess.
J: Was your grandpa a Sunday School teacher there?
E: I don’t remember if he ever taught any Sunday school or not. Might have been.
J: Was he a good Christian man?
E: Ya grandpa was a good, a far as I remember he was. I don’t know when he got saved, way back there.
He was the only feller in that country there that had a buggy. Unless, I don’t know of any other buggy that came to Fairview.
Rest of them was _____ wagon and riding mules and horses.
(Phone rings) G: Ya, he’s here. It’s Scott.
J: How old was he? Was he older than uncle Everett? Ya, dad and him, Bob were close to the same age. Ya, he is older than Everett .
I mean he was about the age of Everett .
G: Is Bob Porter dead?
J: Is he buried around hear?
E: I don’t know where he is buried.
G: Did they say that Bob Porter’s wife was buried up to Clay cemetery. Weren’t we up there one time and Don, the boy said his mother was buried there.
E: I believe he is.
J: How old is that Don Porter?
E: I don’t know exactly, how old he is.
J: Is he 50 is 60 now?
E: He is getting up there.
G; I believe he would be a little bit older than your dad.
G: Arn (Arney) took us up to their house there. They’ve been down here, when their daddy had died.
E: Bob went up in Wisconsin , stayed up there several years. He moved back down here and lived out there ____________ I can’t think right now.
He was a captain. He’d rather have a big glass of butter milk and a piece of cornbread than chicken or anything else.
Give him buttermilk and a piece of cornbread, that was all he would want.
He used to come to our house, him and dad. They’d be together right smart. He didn’t want to go to the Barber shop to get a shave.
Said that barber just keeps going over your face. Rather shave it himself. Shave it off and be done.
Them barbers keep coming back and going all over his face. Said he used to cut it off, and he was done.
J: Any of levi’s grandkids live around here?
E: Not right around here. Arthur’s children live around here. I don’t know if some of Ed’s boys live over around __________.
Back to Carter County Home Page