Chapter Twenty Three
March 30, 1939
The next stop on this old Piney Mountain road was Melton’s crossroads. This was where the Piney Mountain Road crossed the Whiteside settlement road. Mr. Lindsay Melton resided there, and the cross roads took its name from him. This community is now known as Pea Ridge. There were several families who resided near this cross road.
In driving turkeys it was necessary to make camp at sundown as the turkeys would go to roost.Mr. I. N. Biggerstaff had a store and cotton gin at this place about sixty years ago. After Mr. Biggerstaff moved away, Mr. Joseph A. Long, a son of Sheriff Andy Long moved there and kept a store for a number of years and did a thriving business.
Mr. Long was a highly respected man in the settlement and a good citizen. He married Mr. Jim Andrew’s daughter. He is still living and resides on Cane Creek, where he was reared.
Mr. W. O. (Billy) Baber lived near this cross roads. He had a blacksmith shop. He was among the last blacksmiths in the county. He was a very strong man, weighing about two hundred pounds, and had a grip almost like a vise. When people came to the shop he would very often shake hands with them and ask them repeatedly how they were and how they were getting along, shaking and squeezing their hand until they would have to hollow out in pain. Mr. Baber was elected county treasurer and served two years. He was elected as a Republican. He married a Miss Freeman and they had six children, four sons and two daughters. Mr. Baber’s wife was the daughter of Uncle Jackey and Aunt Lucy Freeman. He and his wife are both dead. He died about forty years ago. He was a member of the Methodist church and a good man.
When I was about eight years of age I went to school here at this old cross roads and I remember while here at school of seeing droves of horses and mules, and droves of cows and sheep and hogs driven over this old Piney Mountain road. They also drove turkeys through the country. Five miles was a very good day’s drive for a drove of hogs. In driving turkeys it was necessary to make camp at sundown as the turkeys would go to roost.