...and April Fools' Day

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Entries - Entry Category: ...and April Fools' Day - Starting with C

Caber Toss

Caber toss was arguably the most popular sport in Arkansas in the 1920s and 1930s. Indeed, Arkansas, despite its relatively small population, led the nation in the number of caber toss leagues, and most high schools and colleges had competitive teams. However, the sport declined during the years of the Great Depression and World War II, in part due to active government suppression of caber toss teams. The sport of caber toss originated in the Scottish Highlands. The Gaelic word cabar or kaber means “rafter” or “beam,” and during military campaigns, such large beams were tossed across often ice-cold streams to provide a temporary bridge for soldiers. The first record of caber toss as an athletic event dates to 1574, …

Col. Corn and Little Vittles

Col. Corn and Little Vittles was a ventriloquist act and brainchild of Jasper Oscar Watts of Hogeye (Washington County). The act was popular in the South during the 1930s and 1940s. Born in Hogeye on January 19, 1905, Jasper Watts was the fifth of eight children of Jerome and Emma Watts. Watts attended a local medicine show as a teenager and became fascinated with a ventriloquist who was part of the act. Because the family scarcely had money to feed and clothe their children, Watts resorted to creating his first ventriloquist “dummy” from a tree limb with a pinecone “head” affixed to it. He called his act “Pete and Pinetop” and began mastering the art of throwing his voice he …