Two Men and a Passel of Huntin’ Dogs

I'm going back to the first week that I missed (two weeks ago). The theme was “favorite photo”. I knew right away that I wanted to write about my Papa- Troy Columbus BATES- and also about my paternal great-great-grandfather Alford Allen HUBBARD. Even though these two men were from opposite sides of my family and were born 34 years apart, they share a few things in common. One that I find intriguing is that they both owned the same piece of land in Delaware County, Oklahoma, but at different times. They also both had middle names that were handed down through generations in their respective families.

The other thing they have in common is that they both loved to hunt with their coon dogs. I have a photo of the men each with their own pack of hunting dogs. Those are two of my favorite photos.

^^ Troy "Lum" BATES with one of his hunting dogs and a nights' worth of 'coon hides.

^^ Alford Allen HUBBARD with several of his hunting dogs.


Troy was always called Lum. I never knew him to be called anything else. Columbus is a BATES family name that was handed down through the generations in Papa's family. He was born to Albert and Dettie (GIBSON) BATES in 1912 in Benton County, Arkansas. He lived in Benton County until at least 1940. Sometime after the 1940 census, he and his wife Jessie, and their family would move to McDonald County, Arkansas. Lum and Jessie owned a grocery store and a cafe at different times throughout their lives. Lum once worked one day for the WPA during the depression. He walked off the job that same day because he wasn't working and found it distasteful to draw a paycheck without working for it. He was very patriotic but never once voted. He had an extreme distaste for the government and was also very superstitious. He was known to go miles out of his way rather than cross the path of a black cat. He chewed Red Bull tobacco and always had a spittoon by his chair for as long as I can remember. He kept the house at least 100 degrees and always wore several layers of clothing even with the house that hot. He loved playing cards and he enjoyed watching Hee Haw when it was airing on television. But the one thing he truly loved to do more than most anything else was 'coon hunt.

I remember when Papa BATES was keeping a young 'coon in a cage. It sure was a mean little creature. If you got too close it would hiss at you like a cat. The only time Papa's Georgia history came out was when he would yell at his hunting dogs. I never knew why he said “here” like that until I learned that his family was from Georgia and then it made sense why he said that word with the accent he did. Lum had lots of hunting adventures over the years.  Some recall a time he was out hunting and came across a huge marijuana patch.  My mom told me that Papa got so desperate to go hunting once that he actually took her and Aunt Mae with him so he could go hunting. That's dedication- on their part and his! My dad recalled many hunting trips with Papa BATES including one where he got lost and ended up walking a couple extra miles because of it. Other family members threw in their hunting stories as well but my favorite hunting story is this one. When my son was about 9 or 10 we were visiting Granny and Papa. Papa took my son hunting with him, my dad, and my husband. I loved that my son got to share in that tradition while my grandpa was still well enough to do it with him. Derek talked about that hunting trip for years. Derek used to own a hat that looked much like the one Papa BATES always wore. When he wore it it always reminded me of Papa. Derek even had some senior photos taken with that hat on. I miss both of them deeply.  I was unable to locate any of my pictures of Papa Bates with his hat on, unfortunately.

^^ DeReK with his "Lum" hat.

^^ Lum and Jessie BATES

^^  The only picture I could find of Lum with his hat on.


Alford was born in 1878 in Harrison County, Missouri to John Allen and Nancy Jane (CHAMBERS) HUBBARD. Even though Alford's official documents spell his name "Alfred", older members of the family insisted it was spelled "Alford" and that is how they said his name.  The name Allen has remained a family name handed down through the generations to the present day. Unlike my BATES family, my HUBBARD family did not stay put for long periods of time. Sometime after 1880 they left Harrison County, Missouri. In June of 1900 Alford was working as a Teamster in the railroad tie industry in Shannon County, Missouri. He was living in Cordz-Fisher Lumber Company's camp as a boarder in the home of William and Nancy WOODS. Later that year he married Laura BUTLER in Douglas County, Missouri.

Cordz-Fisher Lumber Company Camp.  Photo found at  This website has some other photographs and some interesting history about the lumber industry in Missouri around this time period.

By 1902, when their daughter Rosa was born, the family lived in Christian County, Missouri. Alford was working in a sawmill at the time of the 1910 census and the family was living in North Marion Township in Christian County, Missouri.

Although he listed his employment as being at the sawmill in 1910 and his residence as N. Marion Township, on his 1918 World War I Draft Registration he stated he was a farmer and living in Seymour, Webster County, Missouri.  His physical description states he was medium height and medium build.  He had blue eyes and brown hair. (See below.)

By 1920, they were living in Webster County, Missouri where their youngest child Anna was born. Alford was working as a Tie Inspector at a Tie Yard (railroad ties). They had two sons and three daughters including my great-grandmother, Edith HUBBARD. (See my previous post for information about Edith at

^^ Railroad tie yard photo found at Missouri Digital Heritage

By 1930 they were in McDonald County, Missouri where Alford was working as a railroad tie buyer.  Below is a 1932 Delaware County, Oklahoma school census record for the family.

In 1940 they were in Delaware County, Oklahoma where Alford and Laura were living with a cousin named Alice Gann. They were listed as Alice's caretakers. Below is a World War II Draft Registration card for Alford from circa 1945.

Alford died in 1950 and is buried in South West City Cemetery in McDonald County, Missouri.

I don't have many stories about Alford. I just have the facts I've been able to gather from documents.  I have lots of stories about Lum, but then you probably have many of your own.  So I'll leave you to reminisce about your own experiences with Lum and reflect on the life of Alford.  The next time you hear a hound dog barking, maybe you'll think of these men and the lives they led.  When you're done reading and reminiscing, don't forget to check these other blogs:,, and

Until next week,
Lisa @ Days of Our Lives

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