Author: T.R.C. Hutton
Author info: Lecturer, Department of History
Publication Date: July 2013
Publisher: The University Press of Kentucky
Synopsis: The notorious conflict between the Hatfield and the McCoy families of West Virginia and Kentucky is often remembered as America’s most famous feud, but it was relatively brief and subdued compared to the violence in Breathitt County, Kentucky. From the Reconstruction period until the early twentieth century, Breathitt’s 500 square miles of rugged upcountry land was known as “the darkest and bloodiest of all the dark and bloody feud counties” due to its considerable number of homicides, which were not always related to the factional conflicts that swept the region. This meticulously researched volume offers the first comprehensive narrative of the violence in this infamous Kentucky county, examining Breathitt’s brutal history and its significance to the state, the South, and the nation.