Saturday, July 12, 2014

Fancy Brown aka Nancy Hipps

Fancy Brown Sewing Pouch
Stacy Nash Designer
Stash linen and NPI silks

Fancy Brown's Sewing Pouch has been stitched and languishing in my "to be finished" drawer for a long time.  Each time I see some of Faye's beautiful finishing, I think about Fancy Brown.  Since I change names, initials and dates on needlework, Fancy Brown has become Nancy Hipps.  Remember I call my family the good, the bad, and the ugly.  Nancy's story contains all three.

Nancy Hipps was born in North Carolina.  She was the daughter of Levi Hipps and Elizabeth.  Nancy married Daniel Price and they lived in the Spring Creek community of Madison County North Carolina.  (Spring Creek is in the mountains of western North Carolina not far from Asheville).  Nancy and Daniel had one daughter and six sons.
  • Harriet born 1838
  • William Franklin born 1839
  • Phillip Fidelle born 1845
  • James R. born 1849
  • John Palmer born 1851
  • Jackson Hicks born 1852
  • Creasman born 1858

When I was researching Nancy, I started thinking about the dates her children were born and I was struck with this thought:  what a terrible time in American history to be born.  All her children were born pre American Civil War.  Sadly, two of her sons, William and Phillip both died in Civil War battles.  William was killed in an ambush during the first day of battle at Gettysburg. 

Like many families, Nancy's sons did not agree about the reasons for fighting and  Phillip (Fidelle) moved from North Carolina to West Virginia.  After he moved from North Carolina to West Virginia, there was no more contact or communication with the family.

William Franklin, the son who died at Gettysburg was buried in a mass grave on the battlefield at Gettysburg.  Waiting at home in North Carolina was William's wife, Catherine and his two infant sons, John and William.  The 1870 census records show John and William were living with Daniel and Nancy.  Why?  Catherine had remarried and maybe she was no longer able to physically or financially care for her sons or maybe there was some unresolved conflict.  This is one of my many family mysteries. 

Daniel and Nancy's son John Palmer married Sarah Miranda Plemmons.  John and Sarah Miranda had nine sons and two daughters.

  • James Elmore
  • Robert Franklin called Bob
  • William Jefferson called Bill
  • Wiley Randolph nicknamed Tuner
  • John Garland
  • Dallas Hicks nicknamed Boss
  • Benjamin Henry nicknamed Boots
  • Ennis Eugene
  • Isaac Newton--his brothers called him Newt

Little is known about John and Sarah's daughters--one was stillborn and the other died in infancy.  Grandmother Sarah Miranda was pregnant when she moved from North Carolina to Tennessee in January 1885.  Moving is stressful.  Can you image moving in the winter in a wagon with five boys and being pregnant?  Sarah named my Grandfather Isaac because of her advanced age.  She always said she was like the Biblical Sarah being older in years and having a child. A Mother to nine sons!!! Grandmother Bessie was full of stories about Grandfather Isaac and his brothers--they loved playing pranks on each other.  The brothers also loved playing baseball.  Anytime they were together, they enjoyed a good game.  During one baseball game, my Grandfather caught a ground ball.  The ball had been hit with such force when my Grandfather caught the ball, it broke his finger at the first joint.  Fearing being taken out of the game with his injured finger, Grandfather kept silent and finished the game.  He never received any medical attention for the broken finger and the finger was crooked all his life.

Thank you Faye for the wonderful finish on Nancy's purse.  The inside of the purse is lined with some of my favorite Jo Morton fabric.  On the back of the purse, Faye made a heart using contrasting Jo Morton fabric and attached a cat charm.  I come from a long line of cat lovers--this  charm reminds me of our sweet Miss Callie Mae Calico.  Grandmother Nancy's purse is hanging with Grandmother Anne Elizabeth's purse in our Grandmother room.


  1. Love this finish! I think it's wonderful that you know so much about your ancestors. I have no such knowledge.

  2. Beautiful stitching and finishing. A fascinating story about your ancestors, I love reading and listening to such stories.

  3. I love hearing your stories Ms Betty - so interesting and you are so blessed to know so much about your ancestors. Struggle and heartache was the tale of so many southern families. Love your finish and Faye did an amazing job bringing it to life. Mel

  4. What a wonderful story! Thank you for sharing. How terrific to have this information for your family tree.

  5. I love this wonderful story... I had thought I commented earlier, but don't see it.... So, as I mentioned, this was a very enjoyable finish for me! Thanks for letting me be a part~