Marker Logo HMdb.org THE HISTORICAL
MARKER DATABASE
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Summerville in Nicholas County, West Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)
 

Nancy Hart

Legendary Spy

 
 
Nancy Hart Marker image. Click for full size.
By Don Morfe, August 3, 2012
1. Nancy Hart Marker
Inscription. The story of Nancy Hart is a blur of fact and legend. Born in Virginia in 1843, she settled with her family first in southwestern Virginia and then in Roane County by the mid-1950s. There, she grew to young adulthood and learned to ride and shoot as well as a man. When the Civil War began, her sympathies lay with the South, and she allegedly served as a guide and spy for the local Confederate guerrilla group, Capt. Perry Conley’s Moccasin Rangers. Conley was killed early in 1862 in a Federal ambush.

Hart moved to Nicholas County and spied for Confederate authorities as she peddled eggs and vegetables in Union camps, where she noted troop dispositions. Here in Summersville, she observed two companies of Lt. Col. William C. Starr’s 9th West Virginia Infantry. Starr soon caught on to Hart’s activities and had her arrested and confined here. She is said to have escaped, however, by tricking a young guard into letting her examine his pistol, shooting him dead, and then mounting Starr’s favorite horse and galloping away.

Hart allegedly returned to Summerville a week later on July 25, 1862, guiding Maj. Robert A. Bailey, 22nd Virginia Infantry, and 200 cavalrymen. The Confederates stormed the town at dawn, capturing Starr (who was exchanged the next month), three other officers, and an undetermined number of soldiers. Bailey’s
75mm M1897 Gun from World War I image. Click for full size.
By Don Morfe, August 3, 2012
2. 75mm M1897 Gun from World War I
men burned three houses and two wagons and took away eight mules and a dozen horses. After the raid, Hart became less active.

Nancy Hart married Confederate veteran Joshua Douglas in 1864 and later lived in Webster County She died in 1902.
 
Erected by West Virginia Civil War Trails.
 
Marker series. This marker is included in the West Virginia Civil War Trails marker series.
 
Location. 38° 16.866′ N, 80° 51.06′ W. Marker is in Summerville, West Virginia, in Nicholas County. Marker is at the intersection of Main Street (State Highway 41) and Church Street on Main Street. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 700 Main Street, Summersville WV 26651, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 7 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Nancy Hart's Capture (a few steps from this marker); Summersville (within shouting distance of this marker); Hawks Nest Workers Memorial and Grave Site (approx. 3.2 miles away); Hawks Nest Tunnel Disaster Workers Grave Site (approx. 3.4 miles away); Keslers Cross Lanes (approx. 5.6 miles away); Cross Lanes Battle (approx. 5.6 miles away); Kesslers Cross Lanes (approx. 5.8 miles away); The Battle of Carnifex Ferry (approx. 6.9 miles away).
 
Categories. War, US Civil
 
Nancy Hart Marker image. Click for full size.
By Don Morfe, August 3, 2012
3. Nancy Hart Marker
Nancy Hart Marker image. Click for full size.
By Don Morfe, August 3, 2012
4. Nancy Hart Marker
Nancy Hart Marker image. Click for full size.
By Don Morfe, August 3, 2012
5. Nancy Hart Marker
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on September 5, 2012, by Don Morfe of Baltimore, Md 21234. This page has been viewed 515 times since then and 40 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on September 5, 2012, by Don Morfe of Baltimore, Md 21234. • Craig Swain was the editor who published this page.
Paid Advertisement