There's nothing better than having a good feud with colorful characters with colorful names like "Poker Tom." The following story is a little over 100 years old from the Baxter Bulletin with meanness on the Missouri / Arkansas state-line.
Feud above the Line.
The imaginary line between Baxter County and Ozark County, Missouri, saved a lot of expense last week in connection with the shooting and cutting affair they had up there. Last Thursday Isaac Crawford and father were with Tom White, better known as “Poker Tom,” on their way to do some work for White. They met Dru Smith in the road, and a quarrel arose. Isaac Crawford was armed with a rifle and Dru Smith carried a double barrel shotgun. According to Smith’s story, Isaac Crawford attempted to shoot him with the rifle, but the weapon snapped, then Smith shot Crawford through the hand as he was holding the gun in position to shoot and the shot tore away Crawford’s chin and knocked out his teeth and plowed through his tongue and neck. Smith turned on Nick Crawford, the older man, and was going to shoot him, but when Crawford begged for mercy and told him that he got his man, Smith lowered his gun. The elder Crawford watched his chance and at an opportune moment grappled with Smith. In the scuffle, Smith dropped the gun, which White quickly secured, taking the lead out of the weapon. Smith and the elder Crawford pounded each other until both men tried to get out their knives. Crawford got his into play and stabbed Smith several times, once very badly in the back, breaking the blade of the knife. Then Smith got away from the elder Crawford and drew a revolver he had in his hip pocket. He shot at Crawford who stumbled and fell. Believing that he also killed the elder Crawford, Smith started to run away. Isaac Crawford, with blood streaming down his face, had in the meantime arose to his feet, and securing a large rock, hit Smith in the head, knocking him down. Before Smith got up, Isaac Crawford was after him with more rocks. Smith turned his pistol on Isaac Crawford, but the weapon failed to explode and Smith then made his escape. White, who had witnessed the whole affair, got possession of both rifle and shotgun and no further shooting was done. Isaac Crawford died Tuesday night from the wounds he received. Up until Wednesday, Smith had not been arrested.
“Feud Above the Line.” Baxter Bulletin 7.09 (06 Mar. 1908) 1-1. Baxter County Microfilm Archive. Baxter County Library, Mountain Home, AR. 1 Nov. 2009