On October 16, 1861, Nancy was to move in with her sister and brother-in-law. It was getting time for Nancy to come, when about dusk a part of Union Soldiers rode into the yard. They told William that he had to make a speech in the town of Spencer, then next day in favor of the Union and they had come to escort him into town that night. While William was getting ready, the Union Soldier's poked about as if searching for someone. They found Mary propped up in bed with several pillows and a large bolster behind her back. They apologized profusely for invading the bedroom and left. Nancy breathed easier from inside the bolster-cover where she had taken refuge.
William Price never got to Spencer, he was found three days later, shot in the back near another farm on the road to Spencer. The hatred Nancy had for the Union Soldiers blazed anew.Nancy's next door neighbor's the Kelly's had two son's join the Confederate Army. The Kelly's threw a big going away party, which Nancy attended. While the party was going on, Union Soldiers marched past the house in the moonlight. The music stopped, she threw her hands over her head and shouted "HURRAH FOR JEFF DAVIS" . Four rifles flashed and four minie balls struck the front stoop, one of then lodged in the door facing Nancy. Three nights later she saddled up and rode away and her career as a Confederate Spy began.
Scout Guide Spy
Nancy, joined the Moccasin Rangers-they were pro-southern guerrillas until 1862. Nancy served as a Confederate scout, guide and spy. She carried messages between the Southern Armies traveling alone by night and slept during the day. Nancy also was an "underground" worker. She saved the lives of many wounded Confederate Soldiers hiding them with sympathizers and often nursing them to health again. Nancy served as a guide for "REBEL" detachments. She peddled eggs and veggies to Yankee's - to spy on them. She hung around isolated Federal outposts in the mountains, to report their strength, population and vulnerability to General Jackson. Nancy led Jackson's Cavalry on several raids against Union Troops.
In the summer of 1862, the wrathful Federals offered a large reward for Nancy with the order of her arrest. Nancy was twenty years old when she was captured by the Yankees. Lt. Col. Starr of the 9th West Virginia captured Nancy at a log cabin, while she was crushing corn. A young female friend was also captured with her. Nancy was jailed in the upstairs portion of a dilapidated house with soldiers quartered down stairs and a sentry guarding her in the room, at all times. Guards constantly patrolled the building on every side.
H. Kerner, was a War
the States telegrapher, he has accounts of Nancy while she
prison. Kerner, talked to Lt. Col. Starr about Nancy and her
being imprisoned in a dilapidated old building, which formally served
a jail. After Kerner, convinced Starr, he transferred
Kerner supplied them with sewing material and illustrated
Kerner stated that Nancy was untutored and uncultured. The
wanted a picture of Nancy, so they dressed her in Yankee clothing and
her picture. Nancy was very shy of the camera, she did not
Kills a Guard
Nancy tells her version on another page
Nancy married Joshua Douglas, former Ranger, he enlisted in the CSA. Josh Douglas, was dying of his wounds, and Nancy nursed him back to health. After the war he returned to the area, found Nancy and married her. After the war Nancy and Josh settled in Greenbrier County. They spent the rest of their lives there. Nancy and Josh had two sons, George and Kennos.
Nancy's last public appearance was shortly before her death. It was at the Courthouse in Lewisberg, to testify in behalf of her son Kennos, who was charged with killing Tom Reed at a dance in Trout Valley.
Hart Douglas died in
She is buried in Mannings Knob in Greenbrier County, West
Virginia. Her grave is
in the cemetery where the Mannings family buried their
the foot of the hill stood the Mannings plantation.
Guide to the Mountain State
What the guide has to say about Nancy Hart!
Seat of Nicholas County, was founded here on Peters Creek in 1824.
HART, noted Confederate
a surprise attach on the town July 1861. The
Connolly, a Confederate guerrilla fighter, Nancy (called
of both armies) was a tall, lithe, black-eyed beauty, just 20 years of
age, when she led the attack in which Captain Starr and a
captured and most of the town burned.
espionage and lodged in
Volume Ten and Eleven. West Virginia,
Nancy Hart was the daughter of John and Rebecca Hart, he was a farmer in the 1860 Census.
Her brothers and sisters as listed in the 1850 Census of Washington County Virginia were:Jane age 20, Adaline age 18, Mary age 13, Henry age 11, John age 9, Nancy age 7, Joseph age 1/12 months.
In the 1900 Census of Webster County, Glade District Joshua and Nancy Douglas are listed with sons George (age 30), Keenos (age 33), Daughter in law, Hailey (age 23), and Clayton Brown, Step grandson (age 2.) This census states Nancy was born July 1843 and born in VA. Her headstone states she died in 1902.
Joshua Douglas died October 25, 1907 in Richwood, West Virginia. He is buried in Richwood Cemetery, Richwood, Nicholas County, West Virginia. There is a story that Joshua had gone to Richwood to sell a team of oxen, had a stroke, went to a friends house in Richwood. Nancy Douglas and her grand-daughter Myrtle Mae Douglas Hollingsworth, rode on a horse from Spring Creek to Richwood where they found Joshua unconscious. He died there and is buried in Richwood. Per Del Hart this story was told by Myrtle.
Jim Taylor holding picture of his Great Aunt, Nancy Hart
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Modified 3 December 2011