Nancy A. Hatfield

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Nancy A. Hatfield (Vance)

Birthplace: Russell, Virginia, United States
Death: Died in Logan, West Virginia, United States
Place of Burial: Newtown, Mingo, West Virginia, United States
Immediate Family:

Daughter of Lewis Horton and Elizabeth "Bettie" Vance
Wife of Ephriam 'Big Eph' Hatfield
Mother of Martha Varney; Judge Valentine "Wall" Hatfield; Elizabeth Simpkins; William Anderson "Devil Anse" Hatfield; Ellison Mounts Hatfield and 7 others
Half sister of Richard Vance; Sarah (Sally) Vance; John Clay Vance; Mary Polly Vance; Lucinda (Lucy) Elswick and 1 other

Occupation: Homemaker
Managed by: Private User
Last Updated:

About Nancy A. Hatfield

Additional Curators Notes

There are two theories for the origins of Nancy Vance Hatfield. The most likely one is that she was the illegitimate child of Elizabeth Vance (1794 - 1850) and Lewis Horton. Lewis was shot to death for getting one of the daughters of Abner Vance pregnant and refusing to marry her. Family lore has always held that Elizabeth the was daughter and that Nancy was the baby. In this case, Nancy's date of birth would be c.1817, and not the 1813 we frequently see in sources for Nancy.

The other theory is that was a sister to NC Gov. Zeb Vance, b. 1830-d. 1894. Many researchers believe that Nancy's grandfather Abner Vance was from North Carolina. Her grandmother Susannah Howard Vance was from North Carolina stock. It is possible that they were related, perhaps even cousins. However, if the children of Abner and Susannah ever visited family in North Carolina, and if it occurred, particularly before the marriage of David Vance Jr. to Mira Margaret Baird, Nancy Vance Hatfield, b. 1813 could conceivably have been the result. All of this makes for interesting speculation, but will likely have to forever remain mere speculation.

The Find A Grave Memorial # 74703736 of Nancy's daughter Martha (Hatfield) Varney, gives Nancy's date of birth as "May, 1813" but has no source of that information.

I have seen several sites claim that Jim Vance was Nancy's father. There were two Jim Vance's in Nancy's immediate family, her uncle and her brother. Nancy's mother, Elizabeth Vance, never married. It is proven that she had two children out of wedlock (Nancy and Jim), and most sources state there were two more, and that the four children came from two fathers. Once source claims seven children. At this point, I'll add the children for whom I have sources, along with the fathers, if known. Others can be added as discovered.

Please consider this profile a work in progress. As we find more facts about this family, it will evolve over time. Please contact me to discuss the data on Nancy's profile. I have tried to keep it as factual as possible. If you have more information, with credible sources, please share it.

Maria Edmonds-Zediker, Volunteer Curator, July 2, 2013

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Nancy Vance was the daughter of Elizabeth Vance, She was born between 1813 and 1819 in Russell County, Virginia, in what would later become West Virginia. There are many theories as to the name of her father. Family lore claims it was Lewis Horton.

She married Ephraim "Big Eph"Hatfield (1812-1881), son of Valentine Hatfield and Martha Weddington. He was called Big Eph because he was over 6 foot tall and weighed nearly 300 pounds.

Nancy died in 1895 in Logan County, West Virginia. She is buried in Hatfield Cemetery, Newtown, Mingo County, West Virginia. This is sometimes called "the old Hatfield Cemetery," with the new cemetery being the one in Logan County, started by her son Anse.

Nancy is best known as the mother of William Anderson Hatfield, "Devil Anse" of the Hatfield-McCoy Feuds. Another son, Ellison, was killed in the feud. Her brother Jim was known as "Bad Jim." He killed a Union soldier named Asa McCoy and was, in turn, killed by Asa's son-in-law, Frank Phillips.

Children of Ephraim Hatfield and Nancy Vance:

  • Martha Hatfield Varney (1831 - 1910), married John Henderson Varney (1828-1905), 8 children
  • Elizabeth Hatfield Record (1835 - 1917), married Willis W. Record
  • William Anderson Hatfield (1839 - 1921), better known as "Devil Anse," a key participant in the Hatfield-McCoy fueds, married Levisa Chafin(1842-1929),
  • Ellison Hatfield (1843 - 1882), married (1) Polly Prater, (2)Sarah Ann Staton. In a relationship with (3) Harriet (?). He was stabbed to death during the Hatfield-McCoy Feud.
  • Jacob Hatfield (1845 - 1923)
  • Elias Hatfield (1846 - 1908), married Elizabeth Chafin
  • Emma Hatfield Smith Reeves Roush (1848 - 1929), married three times
  • Biddie Hatfield Mitchell (1850 - 1924), married Henry Mitchel (1845-1934)
  • Smith Hatfield (1853 - 1937), married Louise Hubbard

Links to additional material:

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Nancy A. Hatfield's Timeline

May 2, 1813
Russell, Virginia, United States
November 1831
Age 18
Logan County, Virginia, United States
Age 20
Logan County, Virginia, United States
Age 22
Owensburg, Greene County, Indiana, United States
September 9, 1839
Age 26
Logan, Virginia, United States
August 1841
Age 28
Pike County, Kentucky, United States
August 1, 1846
Age 33
Logan County, WV
Age 34
October 19, 1850
Age 37
Logan County, Virginia, United States