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Old 03-08-2007, 11:54 AM
137 posts, read 548,756 times
Reputation: 114


Well after more than one reference to "Booger County" and more than a few questions about the origin of the moniker for Douglas county I decided to get to the bottom of it.
What an interesting journey it has been! Through the wonder of the internet and the phone companies I believe I have found the answer.
First let me say that there are several places in the country that have been labeled with the name of "Booger". I must also point out that the reasons are diverse. Very few if any,(there must be some) are referring to the nasty little nose crumb. Many are connected to Bigfoot as in a Texas county that bears the nickname. The "Booger Man " is the reason it was attached to Douglas County. I do not know the reason behind neighboring Shannon County getting the name.
Back to Douglas County, it seems that after the Civil War on the outskirts of Ava, Missouri which was and is still is the county seat for Douglas county there was a sign posted that read as follows. "If your black don't let the sun set on your head or the Booger Man will get you. ". I learned this from a lifelong resident of Douglas county and I believe it to be the true origin in That county at least. He goes on to tell how the federal government some time later came and took the signs down. Of course He was adamant about the fact that it was over 140 years ago and attitudes where different back then. I also learned that others felt it had a more general application to any outsider after the Civil War. It was said that any suspicious activity by an outsider in the time after the civil War could result in the stranger simply disappearing. People would say "the booger man got him" .
The name has stuck no matter the origins and is used by business's and organizations all over Southern Missouri . There is an ice cream shop in Eminence, Mo. A car dealership In Dora, Mo. There are turkey hunting groups and coon hunters clubs. There is a race in northern Arkansas that bears the name. One area in northern Arkansas that bears the name "Booger Hollow" boasts a population of "Seven men and One raccoon ".
It would seem that in some southern states there is a Booger Hollow in almost every county. There is a county in Oklahoma that has the same nickname as well as one in Colorado.

For all those who speculated about the name or were misinformed as to the origin I hope this will set the record straight.

As always be well and be safe but most of all be happy!

Last edited by Indy4570; 03-08-2007 at 12:17 PM.. Reason: corrections
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Old 03-08-2007, 08:52 PM
Location: Marshfield, Springfield
42 posts, read 181,884 times
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thanks indy.....love history
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Old 01-03-2008, 08:46 PM
1 posts, read 11,157 times
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I found your details interesting on why Booger county got its name. I had heard from my grandmother about the this sundown sign. My grandma is 93 and is full of great information. Thanks for sharing you findings.
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Old 09-09-2010, 06:03 PM
Location: MO
380 posts, read 801,613 times
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Default Searching for Booger County

I recently found the book Searching for Booger County, by Sandy Ray Chapin and am once again intrigued by this new home I've adopted.

It didn't take much reading to get to the chapter entitled Devil's Hill and the story of Walter and Ruby Braddock to bring things home. Ruby
Braddock is still living West Plains, her mind almost as strong at 92 as her body was when she was a hard-scrabble bride helping her husband to build his dream, Braddock Ranch. The subject of numerous newspaper articles, books, rumors and tall tales, Braddock Ranch has been absorbed by government land and the lakes, cabins, and hunting grounds Walter Braddock built from scratch are gone.

For anyone looking for the "nitty gritty" of Douglas and Howell Counties, I highly recommend it. I'd checked it out from the MSU library but had to find and buy a copy of my own.
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Old 09-10-2010, 04:54 PM
Location: SW Missouri
694 posts, read 1,047,780 times
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For anyone interested in this particular area of Missouri (ie Booger County and the surrounding area), this website has some interesting history

Site Map

And for you history buff's (and genealogists), there are a lot of Missouri county histories that are posted online now (and tons of other historical collections) (the kind that Missouri libraries keep in the genealogy/history section)

Missouri Digital Heritage : Collections (http://www.sos.mo.gov/mdh/collections.asp - broken link) (it's always surprised me why Missouri genealogy sites don't link to this site as it answers about 50% of the questions they get)

Another good source is Collections: Springfield-Greene County Library - Local History The "Regional Periodicals" section is my favorite with all issues of the old "OzarksWatch" magazine posted online in their entirety. (you preppers will find many interesting articles in this magazine)

I also can't say enough good things about Google Books. If you want to preview a new book before you buy it, see if Google Books has a preview of it. And if you want to read Missouri historical books in their entirety, search Missouri history in Google Books and check the "full view". Your search will only reveal books that are posted complete online and are well past their copyright.

If you are into the 'mystery of history', these links could keep you busy for years. Good hunting!
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Old 09-10-2010, 11:05 PM
Location: MO
380 posts, read 801,613 times
Reputation: 412
Another source I'm delighted to know about is on the MPT.TV web site - the program Ozark Watch Video Magazine. I've watched some of the episodes a half dozen times, but all of them at least once. From the art of story telling to viticulture - the shows capture the essence of the Ozarks.
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Old 09-12-2010, 08:50 PM
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I know one thing, I have been in Ava, Missouri several times before. Very quaint, old fashioned, quiet, not exciting, one helluva nice place to visit. Somewhat, though not exactly, reminded me of some places in Ky. and Tenn. Was o.k. by me.
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