Per Leslie Collier (e-mail posts to the Hatfield mailing list 20 Feb 1998 - 21 Feb 1998):
Ephraim Hatfield, from whose loins spring the famous feudists, did
apparently have two wives, for he made deeds with one in Virginia in the
late 1700's, and legally married another in Kentucky in 1830.

It is the first wife in whom I am primarily interested, the lovely Mary

Let's begin at the beginning. What published Hatfield genealogy includes
Ephraim Hatfield?

Rev. Grover Cleveland Musick, 1964 Source: 1924 interview with great-aunt, Annie Fletcher, step-granddaughter to Ephraim Hatfield
(2)Hatfield Family and Brief Hatfield Genealogy
Henry P. Scalf, The East Kentuckian, Vol. 1, 1965/66 Sources cited by author: THE HATFIELDS AND THE McCOYS (no genealogy, just feud) GENEALOGY OF THE MUSICK FAMILY
G. Elliott Hatfield, 1974; editors Leonard Roberts & Henry P. Scalf NO sources are given for the genealogy in the book (although the feud yields many source citations), but do note that one of the co-editors is Henry P. Scalf, the author who has already confessed to familiarity with the work of the Rev. Grover Cleveland Musick.
Take a closer look at the Rev. Mr. Musick's book, for it appears to be the "ancestor" of the published genealogies that deal with Ephraim Hatfield. * Published in 1964 Nope, he didn't know Ephraim, or any of his children. * Dedication "In this notable work of genealogy, the Reverend Grover Cleveland Musick has done a job that should cause his kinsmen to rise up and call him blessed." * Preface "My work as a minister has always had first place in my life . . . what ability I have as a Genealogist is a gift of God bestowed upon me. . . There has been no editorial supervision nor corrections by anyone except the author." * Bibliography (the closest he comes is this inclusion in the Preface) "I am grateful for all the assistance received from many people. I can not name them all. . . ." " . . . searching records in clerks' offices in many counties in Virginia and other states, visiting cemeteries . . . holding interviews with the older people" "There has been no editorial supervision nor corrections by anyone except the author." * His Hatfield source A single Sunday afternoon's visit with an aged great-aunt, a step-granddaughter to Ephraim, in 1924. She met her granny and step-grandfather Ephraim Hatfield only once, when she was a very young child. The book on Musick family history, which includes some information about Ephraim Hatfield, was not published until 1964, almost forty years after that interview and her subsequent death. * Documentation ... EPHRAIM'S FIRST WIFE: MARY SMITH OR GOFF? Take a look a the opinion of each of the authors. * Musick . . . Mary Goff
"His wife Mary (Goff) Hatfield had borne him two children, Joseph and Valentine. Mary had died shortly after the birth of Valentine in 1789, probably in 1790. Her death was more than likely due to complications following childbirth, leaving Ephraim a widower with two small children." Footnote: "Some folks believe Ephraim Hatfield's first wife was Mary Smith."
* Scalf . . . Mary Smith
"His first wife was Mary Smith, of Russell County . . . (who) died in the 1790's." "Married first Mary Smith. . . Some authorities think that Ephraim Hatfield's first wife was Mary Goff, not Mary Smith. See Genealogy of the Musick Family by Rev. Grover C. Musick."
* G.E. Hatfield . . . Mary (Smith) Goff [2 entries with different opinions]
"He first married Mary Goff, who died about 1790." "Ephraim . . . 1st m. Mary (Polly) Smith Goff."
Lots of opinions here, and the verdict is not unanimous. ... The answer, as usual, depends on going back to the microfilm reader and actually spending time in original records, ... First, you'd better know the law that applied in Virginia in the 1790's (and, yes, that means a trip to a law library unless your genealogy library kindly has a set of the early Virginia law books): STATUTES AT LARGE OF VIRGINIA, VOLUME 1, (1792) p. 99:
"when any person having title to any real estate . . . shall die intestate, it shall descend . . . in the following course . . . To his children or their descendants, if any there be."
Now review a few land transactions: [1]SW Virginia land transactions of Ericus Smith: LAND SURVEY: FHL film 0034377; VA; Washington Co; Surveyor's Book 1; p.166
4 Oct 1783 Surveyed for Ericus Smith 200 acres of land in Washington County by virtue of a Certificate from the Commr. for the dist. of Washington & Montgomery Cos. and agreeable to an act of the Genl. Assembly of Virginia passed in May 1779, lying on the water of Thompson's Creek a branch of Clinch River and Beginning at a walnut & 2 sugar trees at the foot of a ridge of knobs and running thence N7W 30 poles to 2 lg. white oaks; N34E 22 poles to 2 white oaks & a red oak; N17W 60 poles to a lg. white oak, a Dogwood & Sarons(?) Berry saplings on the S side of a branch; S73W 142 poles to a red oak Maple & _______ saplings in the ford of a branch; S45W 67 poles crossing a branch to a Dogwood & beech near a field; N58W 16 poles to 4 sugartree saplings on the side of a hill; S47W 102 poles to a lg. white oak & beech on top of a ridge; S82W 53 poles to 2 Beeches & a Dogwood sapling on a spur; S36W 67 poles to 2 Beeches & a Dogwood sapling on the west side of a branch; S39E 20 poles up sd. branch to an ash & Beech on the west side of same; N73E 380 poles running along the north side of a ridge of knobs to the beginning. Benj Sharp Apt Robt. Preston SWC We the Commissioners for the district of Washington and Montgomery Counties do certify that Ericus Smith is entitled to 200 acres of land in Washington County lying on the north side of Clinch in the New Garden, to include his improvement he having proved to the Court that he was entitled to the same by actual settlement made in the year 1773. As witness our hands this 24th day of August 1781 Test. Jos. Cabell | James Reid, CCC Harry Innis(?)| Comrs. N. Cabell |
LAND PATENTS: VA; Washington Co; Grants & Patents, Book 14, p.12 (abstracted)
17 Sep 1787 Patent to Ericus Smith 82 ac. on Thompson's Creek, adjacent to Samuel Priest (government patent, no witnesses) 2 Oct 1787 Patent to Ericus Smith 200 ac. on Thompson's Creek, a branch of Clinch River, adjacent to his other land (government patent, no witnesses)
Ericus Smith settled on this land in 1773 according to the survey. He made numerous records in what was at first Washington Co., VA, and later was carved out into Russell Co., VA, in 1787. He last appeared on the tax list of 1792 (taken in March), but by the tax list of March 1793, his widow Bridget is chargeable for tax on this land . . . so he's croaked (intestate). The family sits on the land until August of 1797 when a series of three deeds partition this property. Mom is gone by this point, for she does not appear in the deeds, which the Commonwealth of Virginia would require if she were alive.
Dispersal of land of Ericus Smith: VA, Russell Co., Deed Book 2, p. 328
21 Aug 1797 Sale: Ericus & Rosanna Smith, Andrew & Rachel Smith, Ephraim & Mary Hatfield, Joseph & Rachel Smith sell to Aly Smith, 94 ac., part of an old 200 ac. tract (no witnesses)
VA, Russell Co., Deed Book 2, p. 329
22 Aug 1797 Sale: Aly Smith, Ericus Smith, Andrew Smith sell to Joseph Hatfield, 82 ac. on Thompson's Creek, part of survey of 4 May 1784, adjacent to Samuel Priest (no witnesses)
VA, Russell Co., Deed Book 2, p. 330
22 Aug 1797 Sale: Aly & Jane Smith; Andrew & Rachel Smith; Ephraim & Mary Hatfield; Joseph & Rachel Hatfield, now of Lee Co, VA--sell to Ericus Smith, 106 ac. on Thompson's Creek, part of 200 ac. granted to Ericus Smith, decd. (no witnesses)
This one is a slam dunk. It's the law. Only children of Ericus Smith have the legal right to sell his land. The single exception allowed by law would be that any children of a deceased child could inherit the deceased parent's share. Grandchildren do not inherit unless their parent (the original heir) is dead. In that case, the clerks have two options: (a) list these grandchildren by name in deeds as sellers (but the grandkids would have to be of legal age to do so), or (2) allow the guardian of minor children to sell the property to sell in their behalf, in which case an explanation must be provided (a clause explaining the legal right of the guardian to do so, usually beginning with the phrase "in right of" and going on to delineate the legalities of the relationship). The court minutes of Russell Co., VA, exist ... no guardian was appointed for minor children of any Mr. Smith ... not Ephraim Hatfield, not anyone else. Both the wives of Joseph and Ephraim Hatfield are daughters to Ericus Smith. We could stop here. This is considered legal proof of descent; this is not a so-called preponderance of evidence issue. A document exists that stands alone as proof and needs no support. Just for fun, take a peek at church records
  • Ericus Smith married Bridget Anderson 22 Nov 1753 in Old Swedes Church of Wilmington, Delaware
  • Ericus and Bridget (Anderson) Smith baptized Maria, 8 December 1754 (Records of Old Swedes Church of Wilmington, New Castle, Delaware)
  • how handy, documentary proof of a daughter of the right name and age to marry Ephraim Hatfield
Naming patterns?
  • Ephraim named a son Ericus, a daughter Bridget, and possibly even a son Aly
  • Ephraim's son Joseph left a son, Smith, and 3 grandsons named Smith
  • son Valentine left a son Aly, 3 grandsons named Anderson, and a grandson Smith
  • There was never a "Goff Hatfield" in any permutation
Mary lasted longer than heretofore reported
A parting shot to this issue, the very first Goff record created in this neck of the woods is from the same Russell Co. Court Minute Book 2:
p. 81 Thomas Goff, Aaron Alderson, jury Jun 1793
Note that this is the very first appearance of the name "Goff" in Russell Co. records, making it difficult to believe that Ephraim's first wife was married to a Goff before she married Ephraim, for Mary Smith began producing children by Ephraim absolutely no later than 1784--not to mention that the Hatfield genealogies (incorrectly) claim that Mary was dead in 1789 or 1790. EPHRAIM'S PESKY SECOND MARRIAGE
Pike County, Kentucky Marriage Bond, File #263 Ephraim Hatfield and Anna Bundy 22 November 1830 ". . . application was made hereof by George Hatfield their son sufficient to Issue this License . . ."
Hrumph, George is 26 years old at this time. Look more closely: Ephriam shows no older woman in his household on the 1830 census of Pike Co., KY and there's a reason why. Shortly before this bond was taken out, Ephraim Hatfield is arraigned in Pike Co. court on charges of cohabitation. Notice that he married her as Anna Bundy, not Annie Musick. Here's some more: Russell Co., VA, Court Minute Book 2
p. 26 Elexius Musick & Anna Musick appt. Administrators on estate of David Musick, decd., Henry Smith to be their security for 1000 pounds Sep 1792
[Henry Smith is not part of the Ericus Smith family, but a connection to either the Musick family, or to poor widow Anna.] MUGBOOK: PIONEER RECOLLECTIONS OF SOUTHWEST VIRGINIA; Sutherland, Elihu Jasper & Hetty Swindall Sutherland; 1984; pub. by Hetty Sutherland, Gregory Vanover, Joan Vanover; p. 330 & 331 Interview with James C. Sifers July 22, 1928 [son of Jonathan & Josephine (Colley) Sifers]
While George Belcher (the speaker's wife's grandfather) was living in Russell County, the Indians made a raid there, killed David Musick, and carried his wife and, I believe, three children away. He joined thirteen other white men who followed the Indian trail down Indian Ridge to the mouth of Indian Creek, then on to Haysi. They reached there after dark and found the Indians in camp near the north end of the present county bridge over Russell Prater. The whites lay and watched the Indians camp all night. The next morning, they attacked, and killed one Indian. The rest scattered, some going up Russell Prater and some down the river. They rescued the captives and took them back to New Garden. Here Mrs. Musick and her children lived in Mr. Belcher's loom house in his yard for some time. She later married a Mundy who was killed by Indians; then she married Ephriam Hatfield and became the relative of all the notorious Hatfields. It is said that Ephriam was a regular Hatfield name, and Eph Pressley, who married Dick Colley's daugher, Margaret was named for a Hatfield relative, his mother being a Hatfield. There were some Damrons in the party that pursued the Indians. Grandmother Colley, who was Emma Ferrell, lived right where David Musick was killed. He was working in a field and when the Indian alarm was given, he ran to the house, but, instead of going inside, he crawled under the house. Here the Indians discovered him, pulled him out, tomahawked him and scalped him. An Indian put the scalp in a belt that he wore and Mrs. Musick said that he seemed mighty proud of it for, on the trip to Haysi, he continually shook it around close to her. My father-in-law told me that one of the white men took a strip of skin out of the back of the dead Indian and wore it as a belt. Drayton Musick, who lives up here on the hill, has told me that his grandfather, Elexious Musick, was one of the children who was captured, and he had scars on his head all his life that were made by the Indians on the trip.
--------------- [Leslie's note: ... This David Musick story is better fleshed out than others, not to mention that it gets greater weight since he is able to supply some real names which do agree with the tax lists and deeds of this period, not to mention that he knew about the middle marriage of Ephriam Hatfield's wife Annie.]

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