THE ADVANCE REPORTER
Would you believe that felloes, wheel spokes and rim bars were in
such demand in Waldron during a period of years that these items were
ordered in carload lots? It's true. Dave Carpenter verifies the statement.
These items were used in the manufacture of wagons, and Dave worked with
two other blacksmiths in Waldron in making new wagons and repairing the
old ones that had seen much service.
Dave came to Waldron in 1913 from the Blue Ridge Mountain country of
Virginia, Hillsville, at the age of 15. His parents died while he was
quite young. Dave found employment at a nursery, then a sawmill, and he
spent some time on a farm; and at the age of 19 he became a helper at the
blacksmith shop owned & operated by the late Dick Bohnstehn and the late
Ed Judy in Waldron. The shop owners were experts at their trade, and Dave
received expert tutoring.
He established his own shop in 1926 on the lot now occupied by
Oliver Furniture Company, and he has been busy ever since. He later moved
his shop a half block south on the opposite side of the street. During
World War II he was welder for the Post Engineers at Camp Chaffee, Fort
Smith, and Dave said he was kept busy there, too, during the two years he
worked away from home.
Dave estimated that he had shod more than thirty thousand horses and
mules during the period of the horse and buggy days, and the price was a
dollar and a quarter per animal for plain toes. With toes on the shoes the
price jumped to a dollar and a half for four shoes. For three shoes that
would be...well, they didn't shoe three-legged horses. The price today is
Most every barn in Scott county during that period had a herd of
horses and in some barns was also a team of mules. Working horses and
working mules wore shoes.
In addition to horse-shoeing, Dave did practically anything with
metal that could be done with a welding torch and blacksmith tools. He
repaired cotton gins, sawmills, wagons, plows, cultivators, sorghum cane
squeezing machines and baby carriages. And he retired about three months
Way back in 1917 on Thanksgiving Day, Dave and Miss Ina Warren were
married by the late Reverend Mr. Patterson who at that time was pastor of
the Winfield Baptist Church. Mr. and Mrs. Carpenter have three daughters
and a son.
From a special section of the Waldron News newspaper of 23 April 1981,
consisting of interviews of Scott County citizens 80 Years of age and over.
The interviews were done as part of a celebration of the Bank of Waldron's 80th anniversary.
Thursday, July 6, 1967
Years ago you could hear D.C. (Dave) Carpenter's anvil ring all over town. He was the blacksmith,
moving here in 1917 and he shoed 19 horses most everyday. He was very skilled at his trade and
could make most anything out of iron anvil, hammer and forge. He recalls one rainy day making
claw hammers out of horseshoes. He has lived in Scott County for 72 years, moving to Waldron
when he got married to Ina Carpenter on November 27, 1917. Before this he lived in the Winfield
and Hon areas. They had six children, Fern (Carpenter) Cooksey, deceased, Mazie Carpenter,
deceased, Carlean Smith of New Mexico, Dora Ann Yarbrough of Fort Smith, Virginia Lee Parker of
Texas and David Carpenter of Little Rock. Mrs. Carpenter was born in Siloam Springs, Ark. on
January 6, 1897 and she is a housewife. She recalls taking care of her children and fixing Dave
good meals everyday. Mr. Carpenter was born in Hillsville, VA (Home of the Lonesome Pine) on
October 27, 1898.
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