Saturday, June 2, 2012

The Hatfields and McCoys: The Moran Connection

The History Channel's three night Hatfield and McCoy extravaganza was very entertaining.  However, until I was watching a lead in show about the feuding families I didn't know that Simon Bolivar Buckner had a connection to the feud.  I heard the name Governor Simon Buckner Bolivar and saw his picture flash on the screen.  Really?  He played a part in the feud?  I was able to tell our son that he is a first cousin four times removed of the man he just saw on television!  He was duly impressed.  Sort of.

Kentucky Governor
Simon Bolivar Buckner Sr
Adjutant General
Sam Hill
In 1887, Kentucky's Governor Buckner  authorized a posse to go into West Virginia and bring the Hatfields back to Kentucky.  In addition he sent his Adjutant General Sam Hill to find out what was going on with the border between Kentucky and West Virginia. Which is where the saying "what in the Sam Hill is going on" comes from.  The posse fought several battles with several deaths on both sides. Eventually a group of Hatfield supporters went to Randall McCoys cabin and killed two of Randall's children and beating his wife almost to death.  In the meantime E. Willis Wilson, the governor of West Virginia took the case to the Supreme Court saying Governor Buckner violated extradition procedures.  The Supreme Court upheld Kentucky's right to bring the Hatfields to justice.  Eight Hatfields were tried.  Seven were sentenced to prison and one, Ellison Mounts, was sentenced to hang.

Governor Buckner was married twice.  For information about his first wife be sure and read my blog entry about Mary Jane Kingsbury Buckner.  Here's the paper trail, genealogically speaking:

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