SINGULAR ENCOUNTER WITH A DEER.—We have received, from a gentleman of veracity, the following particulars relative to a most singular encounter between an individual and a deer, which occurred near the English Turn one day last week.
A German, not fully acquainted with the habits of the deer, was hunting, when he suddenly discovered a full-grown buck at some distance in a prairie. The hunter at once commenced creeping upon the buck, keeping a small willow tree between him and it. All the time the buck seemed to be at play, moving about in a singular manner, and totally indifferent to the approach of the hunter, who finally reached the willow not more than twenty steps from the deer. The man at once deliberately aimed and fired one barrel of his gun ; upon which the deer started suddenly, looked around him till he saw the hunter, and rushed instantly upon him. As he approached, the hunter attempted to discharge the second barrel of his gun, but the cap did not explode. The deer was now almost upon the man, who had thrown his gun down, still keeping the little tree between them. With a desperate plunge the deer struck the tree, his huge horns passing on either side of it. Instantly the man, who, fortunately for himself, was possessed of great muscular strength, seized hold of the horns of the animal, holding him firmly against the tree. He was, as we have already stated, unacquainted with the habits of the deer—a circumstance that tended greatly, doubtless, to his personal safety. Supposing the infuriated animal, which was only very slightly wounded, to be badly shot, and thinking he was attempting to escape, he held on the harder, with the determination not to lose his game.
Thus the struggle lasted for a considerable length of time, until both were nearly exhausted. The ground about the tree had become—as any of our low prairie lands in winter will—quite miry from the long conflict, when one of the deer’s fore-legs sank into the mud. The hunter instantly took advantage of this, and springing suddenly upon his antagonist, thrust his nose into the mire, and actually stifled him ! He then took from his pocket a small knife, the only weapon about him, and severed the sinews of the deer’s hind legs, to prevent—as he expressed it—“ te tam ting from runs avay.”
The hunter then left his deer, and going to a house not a great way off, related his adventure and procured assistance to remove his well-earned booty. This may look a good deal like a “ fish story,” but it is unquestionably true.
Source: New Orleans Daily Picayune, 11 January 1845 (no 302). 2nd unnumbered page. University of Virginia Alderman Library.
Erin Bartels prepared this typescript.
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