The following article was submitted by Mrs. John Thompson, and was clipped from an old paper she found. It will be interesting to some of the older readers:
About the month of August 1878, the young men from Sandy Mountain, Walnut and Pecan met and decided to have an old time tournament. The place selected for the track to run their horses on and the place for the platform and picnic grounds was at a spring about one mile north of the old Pecan school house, near Pecan creek in the Mart Phillips pasture; the spring has been known since as the Tournament Spring.
brush was cut away and the poles set up for the rings to be
hung upon for the contestants to try to secure as many rings
as they could with their long spears while running their
horses on the track by the side of the poles.
practiced for this contest for some time until some of them
could catch most of the rings with their spears while
running by them.
on Sept. 4, 1878, they met to have their final contest.
contestants wore blue jackets with ribbon sashes over their
shoulders and tied on the opposite side in a bow. They
surely did look grand to we "lookers on," with those sashes
flying in the air. The successful contestants were R.
L. Tate who won first prize, which was a
saddle. J. W. Tate and Mart Phillips
tied on the second prize. They had to run again and J.
W. Tate was the successful contestant; believe
the prize was a pair of boots. J. H. Cherry
won third prize, which was cash.
the contest was over, all marched to the platform where Austin
M. Robinson made a speech. After which all
repaired to the table where plenty of barbecued meat and
other good eats were served, which had been prepared by "Uncle
Dan" Carpenter and his faithful old wife, "Aunt
lunch was served, the dancing begun. The contestants
in their uniforms and the young ladies in their prettiest
dresses. It was a gain day for all present.
There were to queens crowned with wreathes of flowers that
the onlookers saw, but we are very sure that some of the
contestants knew who their queens were within their hearts,
as it was not long until they made some of the young ladies
queen of their home.
good old time violinist Arendia Durbin was
the one who furnished the music and if one ever heard him
play, Ye old time pieces such as "Good Old
Lonesome," "Paddy Won't You Drink Some," and
"Black-eyed Susie" they know how that music sounded down
through Pecan Creek bottom. No doubt but toward the
wee small hours of the morning, Ralph Haynes took
the violin and gave them a few strokes of "Black Jack
Grove," etc. to liven things up a little.
of the folks who were there were from
guests from Austin
In the afternoon Mr.
Fox Robertson and a Mr. Hubbard
came up from Double Horn. They weresaid to be expert
tournament men, but as the contest was over, they did not run.
signed by Old Timer