December 25, 1975
WILLIAM BRIGHT TURMAN
This inventor was born in Ripley County, Mo., April 28, 1841, to Landy and Liza Little Turman and they moved to Cripple Creek, Ark. in Boone County. When Turman was a small child, he and his parents moved to Waldron, November 1850. His parents homesteaded a section of land north of Waldron and built a log cabin in 1853 near where Blythe's Garage is now. That was the only house between Waldron and Fort Smith during the Civil War and it was set fire three times. Mr. Turman was self educated with only nine months formal education. He would walk to Fort Smith and check books from the library, and he served as county surveyor, invented and built a rotary engine such as autos use today. He also invented the sliding valve for the steam engine, invented and sold the Turman Keyless lock. Turman also owned 1,002 acres of land during his life and was president of the First National Bank, a position he held until his death in May 1928. After his death, a two year trial was held in an effort to settle his estate. Some of Turman's inventions are on display at the Turman Museum owned by Gary Blythe. Note: The photo above was reproduced from a newspaper and the quality is not the best.
Return to Scott County Biographies
Copyright 2008-2009 by Delaine Edwards.
All rights reserved.