||Frank Phillips was a member of the Hatfield and McCoy family feud 1863-1891.|
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Bad Frank Phillips was a deputy sheriff, freelance gunman, logger, outlaw, and integral part of the infamous Hatfield and McCoy feud in the US South during the late 19th century.
Franklin Phillips was born 27 July 1861 in John's Creek, Pike County, Kentucky to William "Billy" Phillips and Mary King. By 1870, Frank and his siblings were living with his grandparents in Pike, Kentucky; Jessee and Nancy Phillips. Frank had never met his father, as Billy died serving in the US Civil War.
Frank was described by some who knew him as handsome, with a pleasant expression.
Later, Frank married Mary Cinderella Rowe, 17th September 1883 in Pike County, Kentucky. Mary and Frank had 5 children; Franklin Jr., Epperson, Lizzie, Pearl, and Roy. Mary was married before and had one child, Ora Justice, when she married Franklin. They later divorced.
Frank bought land after 1887 in Pikeville, Kentucky in the midst of the Hatfield-McCoy feud. The feuding led him to leave that home and head to Peter Creek, to avoid some of the conflict headed his way as the McCoys tried to pin two murders on him.
It was during his time there that Nancy (McCoy) Hatfield moved in with him, the wife of Johnse Hatfield, who had remarried in bigamy after fleeing to the Pacific Northwest, leaving her alone. Frank and Nancy were married on 5 September 1895 in Pike County, Kentucky, after finally securing a divorce from Johnse (but not before Frank and Nancy were indicted for adultery in 1891). They supported their family with Frank's successful timbering business. The household had eleven children: two from Nancy's marriage with Johnse, five from Frank's marriage to Mary, and four (Elsie, Jesse James, Flora, and Goldie) they had together.
Frank knew he was trouble. He referred to himself as "Bad Frank" as often as those around him did. Though apparently a very likable and kind person when sober, he was "crazy" when he drank, which was every weekend, and later in life included week-long binges.
An opportunist whether for good or bad, he had a reputation. He had been indicted in three different states, for various crimes, but never served time. His connection to the powerful Pike County man, Colonel John Dils, helped him out of any situation he got himself into. Dils was Frank's guardian for a time after Frank's dad, Billy Phillips, died during the US Civil War under Dils' command. Despite the lore surrounding the legend, few sources back up the stories of cold murders, many of which were actually attributed to the McCoys. The worst that can be solidly attributed to him is an attempted murder of Rebel Bill Smith. He was known as a freelance gunman.
Frank Phillips was appointed deputy sheriff in June 1887, Pike County, Kentucky, by Sheriff Basil Hatfield. It was this role that he is best known for, as it included his foray into West Virginia to capture many of the Hatfields. His activities nearly caused a war between Kentucky and West Virginia.
Frank was recruited by Perry Cline to gather a posse and capture the Hatfields after three of the McCoy sons had killed Ellison Hatfield five years earlier. Devil Anse had retaliated by killing the three of McCoys. Several skirmishes occurred during that time, leading to the burning of the McCoy farm, and the deaths of two more of the McCoy children.
In the famous massacre event of the Hatfield and McCoy feud, Frank led his posse into Logan County bent on rounding up Hatfields on 9 January 1888, succeeding in bringing in nine in a series of bloody battles. Phillips had led several similar raids, the culmination of which led to him being wanted in West Virginia. His relentless pursuit of the Hatfields made him one of the few men Devil Anse Hatfield feared.
Frank lived up to his nickname time and time again. In a final instance, he quarreled with a friend about a woman and threatened to stab him. The friend warned him to back off, and in the end the friend shot him through the hips.
He was carried to the home of Dr. Dotson who ended up amputating his leg to try to save him from gangrene, then home, and soon after set about putting his affairs in order, writing his will just five days before he passed. He requested that his first wife, Matilda, come to visit so he could ask her if their last two children were really his. She said yes, but he must not have believed her because he left money to all his children except for those two.He also left five hundred acres of land to Nancy. Just a couple of weeks later, he died of his wounds at the age of thirty-six, July 12, 1898, in Pike County, Kentucky.
Notably, Frank's wife, the "Hellcat" Nancy, died of tuberculosis three years later, also thirty-six years old. She never saw the generous inheritance he left her due to shady lawyers who sold it to each other. She did what she could to fight the situation, going so far as to maintain a bootlegging business to support her family.
Frank was buried in Phillips Cemetery, Pike County, Kentucky.
|the inscription on Frank's headstone|
The Phillips DNA project has tracked down the Phillips line of Bad Frank Phillips, putting him in Phillips DNA Family Group 8.
On 3 Dec 2012 Betty Keene wrote:
Franklin died when Roy was 2 years old.Note::Bad Frank(Franklin) is the Grand Son of NANCY BISHOP(KEENE)(PHILLIPS) and Jessee Phillips.
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On 19 Mar 2017 at 23:13 GMT Paula J wrote:
On 19 Mar 2017 at 23:09 GMT Paula J wrote:
On 19 Mar 2017 at 23:00 GMT Paula J wrote:
If the parents are disconnected from Phillips-3742 these two can be merged.
On 19 Mar 2017 at 22:58 GMT Paula J wrote:
On 28 Jan 2017 at 21:05 GMT William Phillips wrote: