PIGEON FORGE, Tenn.–(Sept. 26, 2018)–An authentic pistol that historians say William Anderson “Devil Anse” Hatfield (1839-1921) kept in his front coat pocket as well as a unique American Legacy Henry Repeater Rifle (the Hatfield & McCoy commemorative 150-year rifle) will be on display in the lobby of the Hatfield & McCoy Dinner Feud™ Theater in Pigeon Forge (Tennessee) beginning Sept. 25 for one year.
The true story of the Hatfield and McCoy feud spanned several decades and was one of the longest and most infamous family feuds in history. No one really knows how the feud began but some say the fight began over a stolen pig. A historic truce was signed between the two families in 2003 on national television, although the actual fighting had been over for a long time.
“Devil Anse” Hatfield was one of the patriarchs of the infamous Hatfield and McCoy feud. His great-great-great-granddaughter, Judy Hatfield, as well as his great-great-great, grandsons, Reo and Jack Hatfield, were all on hand on Monday to present the weapons to the theater. Ron McCoy, great-great-great-grandson of Randolph McCoy, patriarch of the McCoy clan, was also in attendance. Reo’s wife, Roxanne Hatfield, and Jack’s partner, Miguel Castillo-Diaz were there as well.
“I cannot tell you how proud we are to have these weapons on display in our lobby,” said Jim Hedrick, sr. vice president of Fee/Hedrick Family Entertainment and co-owner of the Hatfield and McCoy Dinner Feud. “We are going to carry on the history, the heritage and the peace of the Hatfield and McCoys.”
Kimball Keller, general manager and producer of The Hatfield and McCoy Dinner Feud said, “While the Hatfield and McCoy Dinner Feud is not associated with the two actual families or the former feud, the dinner show keeps the family names alive as we entertain thousands of guests a year. We are pleased that the two formerly feuding families met in peace at our theater to continue their legacy and present these guns to our show.”
The firearms will be displayed in a locked alarmed case in the gift store at The Hatfield and McCoy Dinner Feud. Historians do not think that “Devil Anse” shot anyone with either of these weapons which are valued at over $50,000.
The pistol, approximately 6 inches by 4 inches (smaller than a man’s hand), was sent to Reo Hatfield by a member of the West Virginia House and comes with a certificate of authenticity. The two-family feud inspired Legacy Firearms to create the Hatfield and McCoy rifle. The firearm commemorates the long-lasting quarrel between the two families. Etched into the finish of the wood is a timeline of events between the two feuding clans and engraved signatures from both Hatfield and McCoy family members. The “Henry Repeater Rifle” is hand carved and very ornate with wood and gold engraving and depicts both families, one family per side as a tribute. The rifle is approximately 45 inches x 6 inches long. The Hatfield and McCoy Dinner Feud™ Theater received a certificate of authenticity for this limited-edition item that was purchased by Judy Hatfield. Only 150 were made, making this a very special item for gun collectors and history buffs alike.
Ron McCoy said, “We don’t deny our family history but we learn from it and we celebrate it. We hope that people can learn from it the same way we have. Not many people thought the McCoys and the Hatfields would ever break bread together, but here we all are at The Hatfield and McCoy Dinner Feud Theater. It is a great show about our families and it is a privilege to have the opportunity to share our family history.”
Reo Hatfield said, “If the Hatfield and McCoys can make peace happen so can everyone else in the world. Sometimes you have to fight, but you don’t have to fight forever. We need to treat everyone with respect and we will continue that for a lifetime. Both families are now of one unity and one nationality.”
Hedrick said, “The only fussin’ and fuedin’ going on between the Hatfields and McCoys now is at our dinner show, and it is all in good fun. We want everyone to come and have a good time and see a great show. We also want to encourage people to come to our all new ‘Hatfield and McCoy Christmas Dinner Disaster’ that begins Nov. 1 and runs until Jan. 1. The 2018 production is brand new and simulates everything that you would expect at a holiday gathering.”
The “Hatfield and McCoy Dinner Feud” is a hilarious hit production inspired by real-life events that will put a mountain feast in people’s bellies and a smile on their faces, as they watch a lively talent competition between Pa Hatfield and Ma McCoy and their clans where the battlefield is the stage. This two-hour live show offers loads of laughs including a rowdy battle at a barn dance, extraordinary country, bluegrass, and gospel vocal and instrumental musical performances, and award winning hillbilly musicians, divers and cloggers. After three years of undergoing a $3 million renovation to the stage area, the theater added a 24-foot-deep Olympic diving pool with 300,000 gallons of water this year. It is the only stage of its kind in the Smoky Mountains, and it made possible the addition of high-diving hillbillies and long-jumping canines.
The feud is kicked-off at 5 p.m. and 8 p.m. nightly, with occasional 2 p.m. matinees. Guests of all ages in the audience are encouraged to support their own side of Hatfield or McCoy “kinfolks.”
This feudin’ show comes with a Granny’s ‘All You Can Eat’ mountain feast, served by a hillbilly waiter or waitress. Granny’s menu includes: feudin’ fried chicken, open pit pulled-to-pieces pork barbecue, southern style creamy soup, smashed mashed taters, buttery corn on the cob, ma’s hot homemade bread, no tellin’ what’s in it coleslaw and Granny’s famous specialty desserts. A vegetarian option is also available upon request.
For more information about the show, visit www.HatfieldMcCoyDinnerFeud.com or call (865) 908-7469 (SHOW). The Hatfield and McCoy Dinner Theater is located at 119 Music Road between traffic lights 0 and 1 on the Parkway in Pigeon Forge between WonderWorks and the Titanic.
The Fee/Hedrick Family Entertainment Group, one of the largest show production companies in the southeast, also owns and produces other major shows in the Smoky Mountain including “The Comedy Barn,” “The Smoky Mountain Opry,” and “Magic Beyond Belief™” starring Darren Romeo. In November and December the company produces “A Comedy Barn Christmas,” “Christmas at the Smoky Mountain Opry” starring Chris Blue, Season 12 winner of ‘The Voice,’” The “Hatfield and McCoy Christmas Disaster Dinner and Feud,” and “Magic Beyond Belief” starring Darren Romeo in a magical Christmas.