Back in the winter of 1905, a group of twenty-six young possum hunters flooded the Shoal Creek bottoms in search of the “savory little sweet potato seasoner.” Despite their best efforts to catch a possum, the group came home empty handed. The young men blamed their bad luck on the girls; the girls proclaimed if they were the young men, they’d be ashamed at their failure to catch a possum. Their hound was so ashamed that he reportedly slunk back into town with his tail between his legs.
But the group’s disappointment, if any, was short-lived. They built a bonfire, made hot coffee, and had dinner under the clear, starry skies of winter. It wasn’t until after one o’clock in the morning that the exhausted group made their way back into the city limits.
For those who may be interested, a list of the group’s names were provided: Mr. and Mrs. T.A. Wisdom; Mr. and Mrs. Jas. C. Daugherty; Mrs. James McCool; Misses Nell Cummings, Goldie Mason, Maude Smothers, Margaret Cummings, Belva Looker, Mary Carrithers, Margaret McCarthy, Inez Looker, Jennie Harding, Kate Cummings, Mable Looker; Messrs. Albert Webb of Carl Junction, Thomas Beatois of St. Louis, H.D. Watrous, J.H. Gwathney, Will Malone, Max Paul, Earl Doherty, W.P. Keller, Fred Degraff, and Louis Jones.
Source: Joplin Globe