Appalachia Crows

Old Jim The Pet Crow

Today’s guest post was written by Charles Fletcher

My life in appalachia - Pet Crows
Crows in flight

“Old Jim The Pet Crow” by Charles Fletcher

I had a pet crow when I was about ten years old. I found the crow under a big pine tree hollering his head off. There were about ten crows trying to rescue him. The baby had fallen from its nest during a wind storm.

It was a little risky getting him with all the big crows nose diving me. Just the same I got him to safety. I took him home and named him Jim.

He was so small I had to feed him by dropping food in his mouth for a few days. But crows are smart and he quickly learned how to feed himself.

I had to show Old Jim off to my Grandpa Pressley so off to his house I went. Grandpa told me he had a pet crow when he was a young boy too. He told me if I split Jim’s tongue he could talk. I never did this, but I did clip the feathers off one of his wings. This kept him from flying. He would attempt to fly, but was off balance and couldn’t get airborne.

It wasn’t long before my Mother began complaining about loosing things. It was always something shinny like small spoons or thimbles from her sewing basket. It seemed Old Jim loved shinny things.

Jim was soon as large as all the other crows that came by trying to get him to fly away with them. I quit trimming his wings and one day he flew up and joined the flock. For a few days he would come visit me when he was hungry and wanted a handout. Finally the day came, when Old Jim joined his friends and never returned to me again.

My Mother was  house cleaning when she solved the mystery of the missing items from around the house. Old Jim had a secret corner in the closet where he hid his loot.

I never had another pet crow but enjoyed Old Jim. He was a very smart cookie.


Hope you enjoyed Charles’s memories as much as I did!


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  • Reply
    February 7, 2019 at 8:21 pm

    I did enjoy the story Tipper. I always love reading your post. God Bless you for all you do.

  • Reply
    February 7, 2019 at 4:59 pm

    I have a story I tell to Yankees about crows. It seems some folks were upset about crows getting killed on the roads. Two city employees were sent out to investigate. After a couple days of observation they concluded it was a vocabulary deficit with the crows. When asked to explain they said when the crows were eating road kill there was always a lookout crow on a fence, tree or housetop. Ninety-eight percent of the crows killed on the roads were hit by trucks and the rest by motorcycles. The lookout could call out, “Caw!” but not “truck or bike.”

  • Reply
    Chris Armor
    February 7, 2019 at 1:24 pm

    Heckle and Jeckle

  • Reply
    Ken Roper
    February 7, 2019 at 1:12 pm

    And Charles,
    Thanks for posting Charles’ story about a pet Crow he once had. I love to read about Charles” adventures when he was a boy. We can learn much from our elders. Thank you, Charles. Ken

  • Reply
    aw griff
    February 7, 2019 at 8:55 am

    That was an interesting story. I only knew one family that had a pet crow. One of them climbed the tree to the nest and stole the baby crow. This family should have been born in the 1700’s. I know the oldest one ,in his 70’s, is still a good deer hunter and coyote killer. They wasted very little of anything edible. Many yrs. ago I went groundhog hunting with the middle boy and we gathered up ever hog we killed. What they didn’t eat they fed to their pet coons.

  • Reply
    Ron Stephens
    February 7, 2019 at 8:07 am

    I have fish crows here but I doubt them being in the mountains. They have the oddest call, not a ‘caw’ at all. I can’t identify them by sight, don’t even know if that is possible.

    Anybody remember the TV cartoon that was crows? I don’t recall the name of it but it was all about the crows outsmarting the humans.

    Crows are the one potential garden pest that I haven’t had yet. I seem to have had all the others. They can ruin corn planting by pulling up the emerging shoots.

  • Reply
    Sanford McKinney Jr
    February 7, 2019 at 8:05 am

    My Mother told me years ago about a pet Crow that they had and it (he/she?) was a thief, also. Their crow not only stole from them but would take any shiny object that the neighbors left out. The crow thief got to be known in the neighborhood and when people would be missing something that they thought the thief had taken, they would check with my Mother’s Mother to determine if they had been victimized by the thief.

  • Reply
    Miss Cindy
    February 7, 2019 at 7:43 am

    What a beautiful story. It was good that he let him go back with his family, that would not have been easy for a little boy to let his pet go.

  • Reply
    Patsy Allen
    February 7, 2019 at 7:32 am

    Chestnut Burr

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