Vintage Ozarks

Origin of Ha Ha Tonka mythos

In Damming the Osage, we wrote about the connection between Col. R.G. Scott and Robert M. Snyder, who built Ha Ha Tonka. 

Colonel R.G. Scott came from Iowa to the Ozarks around 1890 where he futilely attempted to promote a railroad linking Jefferson City and Springfield. 

He and a friend, Major R.D. Kelly, bought or optioned a large parcel of land around Gunter Spring from Jack Roach. His son, Sydney Roach, was an attorney on the Snyder legal team.

Likely, it was the Colonel who built the low dam that created the lake that would be subsumed by Lake of the Ozarks. Possibly, it was he who stocked it with rainbow trout.

Probably, it was Scott who coined the name Ha Ha Tonka, although he claimed a Captain Lodge learned that name from a group of visiting Osage Indians. 

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