On November 4, 1913, Governor of Missouri Elliott W. Major, St. Louis, Democratic National Committeeman Edward F. Goltra and millionaire manufacturer; Mayor Rolla Rothwell of Moberly, Missouri teamed with dozens of other men and over 100 hunting dogs which all charged into the forests of Randolph County, Missouri in search of raccoons. It was not long after their start when the dogs began to go wild, it seemed as if they had located the, “daddy of all coons”. As the dogs intensity increased the hunters raised their guns only to hear, shouted at them from the trees above, “Don’t shoot…I’ll come down”.
It was then that the hunting party realized they had tracked down something much stranger than any oversized raccoon. They had caught themselves a man, but this was no ordinary man who climbed down out of the tree.
The man had a wooden leg with a hole carved in it so that bees could live inside the leg. The man explained that years ago he had found a bee and took pity on the small creature so, wanting to give it a home, carved a hole in his wooden leg as a place for it to rest. The bee, it turns out was a queen bee and soon his leg was home for dozens of worker bees. Over time the bees, lacking sufficient space in the man’s leg began to take residence in his hair and beard. Eventually he built a special hat for the bees to nest in as well and it seems the hunting dogs, that evening, had tracked the honey which was dripping out of the bee-man’s leg. The hunting party listened to his story and was indeed fascinated by it but in the end they were hunting for raccoons not bee-men so the party left and continued their hunt.