On August 21 and 22, 2015 at the invitation of Pike County Tourism Board member Bob Scott, Bobbi and I were invited to attend our first Kentucky State Fair in Louisville, KY. Tourism Director Tony Tackett, Marketing Director Jay Shepherd and many others worked long hours to construct the largest county booth at the Fair. The booth, complete with a cabin front porch facade, was a tribute to the culture of Eastern Kentucky, featuring local artisans, musicians…and the Hatfields and McCoys.
My friend, William K. “Billy” Hatfield, the great-grandson of “Devil Anse” Hatfield made the drive from Tulsa, Oklahoma to attend. It is always a lively time when the Hatfields and McCoys come together and the Fair was no exception. Many people stopped by the booth for pictures, signatures and fun conversation.
There was a lot of interest in “Reunion” as well. People who had heard of the reunions over the years, watched the Truce signing on television or saw the recent Hatfield-McCoy episode of “Diggers” on National Geographic were delighted to hear some of the stories behind the events.
Many were fascinated to learn about my own reunion with my family’s history. One local television station, WAVE of Louisville did an interview with me about the book.
It was an honor to share the booth with my friends, photographer Larry Epling and Jim Combs of Wellington LTD. It was a particular treat to meet talented Pike County artists Paula Stewart Smith and Vera Kay and to listen to the music of Waylon Nelson. Over the course of two days, we had the opportunity to meet hundreds of people from all over Kentucky. I am happy to say that interest in the Hatfields and McCoys remains high.