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Out in the Missouri Woods

Tuesday - 1 October 2013

Lost Quarter Farms hunting area lies 3 miles west of Mendon, Mo., a small town in Chariton County.

Lost Quarter or LQ, is bordered by Swan Lake National Wildlife Refuge and Yellow Creek. It is accessed by private bridge over this waterway. Tall Oak and Hickory trees tower over 70 feet high. You immediately get the feel of being in another world and can easily leave your work and worries behind as you weave through the wooded lane past the LQ duck lakes and approach  the lodge.

The lodge was built in 1929 as a one room cabin and later a fireplace was added. It was used as a refuge from the cold during the duck and coon hunting. Hunting was quite different during this time with no limits or license needed. It is said that enough ducks were killed to filled a rail car in Mendon and were shipped directly to Chicago to be prepared and served in the finest restaurants of that city.

In the late 30′s, a local man, Tom Bash,  (named for Thomas Hart Benton) purchased around 1000 acres between the AT&SF Railway and what later would be Swan Lake Wildlife National Refuge. He along with others built 5 hunting lodges and a home. He made LQ  his main lodge and later his good friend Harry Munsel, president of KCPL, joined the venture.  enlarged the lodge by adding 4 bedrooms, 2 baths and 2 kitchens. I will write more extensively about Tom Bash and that time at a later blog. KCP&L, an elec. utility company became the sole owner in 1949. There was 2 owners after they sold and my husband, Jim Walton and I purchased in 1979 and had various partners until Jim’s death in 1989 when I purchased  the property from our partners.

I started running the lodge as a pay hunting property in the 90′s and was joined by my new husband DeWane Leathers in 2000.  Since DeWane’s death in Feb. of this year my son Kendall Walton is overseeing the operation with me.  He is the duck hunting manager.

Our lake is filling nicely and has been absolutely loaded with ducks as we have feed. Kendall has built 2 new duck blinds and renovated 2 along with the new one from last year, making a total of 5 blinds.

My blog will be about the movie originating here produced by MGM and staring Lionel Barrymore and Margaret O’Sullivan. Tom Bash furnished the coon dogs and most of the critters.