The Hog Trial
In the fall of 1878, Randolph McCoy brought charges against Floyd Hatfield for stealing one of his hogs. The resulting trial occurred here and was presided over by the local justice of the peace, "Preacher" Anderson Hatfield.Preacher Anderson was "Devil Anse" Hatfield's cousin and did not want to appear biased so he gathered a jury of six Hatfields and six McCoys to hear the case.When the jury reached its verdict, Selkirk McCoy, nephew of Sarah McCoy and a veteran of the Virginia Confederacy, sided with the six Hatfields in favor of Floyd. The McCoys felt betrayed and open hostilities soon erupted between the Haftield and McCoy families.Later Bill Staton, who testified in favor of his brother-in-law Floyd Hatfield was killed by two of Randolph McCoy's nephews while he was hunting. They were tried and acquitted in a trial presided over by Valentine Hatfield, uncle of Devil Anse.
Election Day Fight
Devil Anse’s brother Ellison Hatfield got into a fight with three of Randle McCoy’s sons here at an election day celebration. One of the McCoys pulled a knife and Ellison was stabbed 27 times and then shot in the back. Anse and a posse intercepted the McCoy brothers as they were being taken to a Kentucky jail and escorted them back to West Virginia.Ellison was still alive and, according to Anse, the three McCoys would live only if Ellison survived. The following day Ellison died. Anse and his followers then transported the McCoy brothers across the river to Kentucky, tied them to several pawpaw trees and shot them.Indictments were issued for Anse and several of his supporters, but for five years no action was taken to extradite them.
This location is always open to the public. The cabin is not however always unlocked.
You can visit it by stopping by to view it from the outside or you can reach the Pike County Tourism office and speaking with Tony Tackett for more information on what hours the cabin is open for visiting inside.
This site has very few steps. There are several historic events that took place at this location and this one is a must stop on the Hatfield McCoy Feud location list.
Be sure to notice the footprints in the steps on the front porch.
Bill Staton ( ? – 1880)
The body of Bill Staton was found in the woods yesterday. Authorities say he was shot while hunting.
Two men were sought in connection with the death. They were Paris McCoy and “Squirrel Hunting” Sam McCoy. Both of these men are relatives of Randolph McCoy.
Staton gave testimony against Randolph McCoy in a trial over the theft of a hog and this led to Randolph losing the case. After that, tensions between the McCoys and members of the Hatfield family, which Staton is connected to, have been growing.
Some suspect that Staton was murdered for what was perceived as lying against the McCoys in the trial. Both of the McCoys suspected in the shooting are at large.
Staton is survived by his wife.
Staton’s body has not been released so details of funeral arrangements are still pending.
~ Obituary written by Bill Richardson
The feud yarns make all the Hatfields and McCoys either stupid, bloodthirsty or cowardly. Sometimes it is all three. The majority of the McCoys in the yarns are cowards, who huddled for years, trembling at the thought of the terrible Hatfields. This never sat right with me, from my first reading of a feud book at age twelve until today. I could not accept it, simply because I knew too many McCoys, with not a coward among the lot. My mother was a McCoy, the daughter of Phillip McCoy. Mom had nine siblings, three brothers and six sisters, with nary a coward among them. My Grandpa Phillip McCoy feared no man, and his three sons, Asa, Lucas and Bobby were cut from the same cloth. My mother and her sisters would, as the old folks said, “fight a circle saw.” My aunt Grace is still living in her nineties, and if the ghost of Devil Anse invaded her home tonight, she would fight him tooth and nail to protect her family. The strangest thing about the cowardly McCoy story is that it is supported by a very active and noisy minority of present-day McCoys. This little group, which I call “The Ran’l McCoy cult,” will laud any writer who makes the Hatfields total villains and the McCoys helpless victims—AND makes Ran’l McCoy the head of the McCoy clan. This book will answer the question which plagued me as a youngster, and which I know still plagues readers of feud books, which is: “Why did Randolph McCoy receive no support, either from his relatives outside his immediate family, or from the community at large, in his troubles with Devil Anse Hatfield?” The cult will hate this book. ~Thomas
I am listing as many of the books from local writers as I can on this site. You can read them and get several different views of the feud and its history. This one is from Thomas Dotson and admittedly it is a bit radical for my personal opinion but still very much worth reading if you enjoy getting more than one view of a subject :)
"Marvelous....THE FEUD is popular history as it ought to be written." ---Wall Street Journal
Nearly every American has heard of the Hatfields and the McCoys. The violent feud between these two families has become shorthand for fierce, unyielding, and even violent confrontation. Yet despite numerous articles, books, television shows, and feature films, until THE FEUD nobody has ever told the true story of this legendary clash in the heart of Appalachia.
Drawing upon years of original research, including the discovery of previously lost and ignored evidence and interviews with surviving relatives of both families, Dean King has crafted a rip-roaring narrative packed with brutal murders, reckless affairs, mercenaries and detectives, and the long shadows of the Civil War. The result is an unvarnished and vastly entertaining work of history.
These adorable metal coins are about the size of a nickel and you get both the Team Hatfield and Team McCoy tags for 10.00 shipped to you.
Order yours today before they are gone and display on your key chain, a necklace or add to your collection of Pathtags :)
Download this list of the feud sites