Mary Celestia Parler;
Mountain Home, Ark
November 5, 1954
Reel 213, Item 2
Conversation About Homemade Guitar
MCP: •••I want you to tell Gary over here about that
JM: Oh, about my little homemade guitar. Well, grand-father
made this, too. I was just a small boy and
there came a feller along the road one day that had
a guitar. He stopped and spent the night with us.
Everybody spent the night with us. A lot of the
neighbors were afraid to keep people. We kept all
of them, we even kept Yates Stanners, did you ever
hear of him?
MCP: No, who's he?
JM: He was a great bank robber from up in Newton County.
But we didn't know at that time what he was. But we
kept them all. And this fellow came along with a
guitar, and he played it that night. The next day I
cried cry, Son, I'll make you one." So he made this little
guitar. The neck of it's made out of an old fence
rail. The sides here are out of an old ox yolk, and
the top and bottom are out of one of Grandmother's
old bedsteads. So that's the story of the little
guitar. Oh, there's a little more to that story.
I remember that we were working in the corn in the
new ground, and Grandfather was up there with me,
and he had the old guitar up there, and we didn't
plow much, nor hoe much, we kept playing this old
guitar. So we'd slip it out—Grandpa would—and take
it up there, and 'course Dad couldn't tell Grandfather
not to take the guitar up. But, anyhow, he put a bell
on the mule, and he told us that he didn't want that
mule to stop, that he'd sure hear it if we did. But,
you know, Grandfather was smarter than Dad. We just
sat down on a stump—I did with the guitar--and Grandpa
took the bell off the mule and put it on my foot and
just kept it going.
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