The recent Civil War had little effect on people living in the hills of Western Appalachia where Kate was born. Women struggled through a weary life in a corn-liquor culture dominated by hypocritical men holding to the tradition that women should be kept barefoot, silent, busy and pregnant. These male dominated customs were enforced by ego driven ignorant preachers.
At eighteen Kate possessed a ripe body, an inquiring mind, an in tact virginity and a talent for hitting whatever came in the sights of her small-bore muzzleloader squirrel rifle.
Within a fortnight two tragic events claimed the life’s of Kate’s father, two brothers and her mother. Kate was suddenly alone with two horses, a team of mules, some smaller livestock and a worn out farm in Painter Holler.
While tracking two wanted men, a bounty hunter connected with Kate and learned the men he was seeking had met their end during a midnight shootout, when they attempted to rob Kate and her mother.
With a storm in the offing, Brady accepted Kate’s invitation to stay at her house until the weather improved. During his visit Kate offered up her virginity and became Brady’s life partner. In return Brady introduced Kate to a world populated by trains, hotels, steamships fancy clothes and a life she lacked the knowledge to imagine.
Traveling with Brady, Kate quickly transitioned into a mature young woman with a new vocabulary and demeanor able to feel at ease in formal afternoon teas wearing a holstered Derringer pistol under a fashionable dress or creeping around inside a dark, stinking, cheap saloon to arrest a wanted felon.
Kate held up her half of the partnership by always being at Brady’s side and going gun to gun during showdowns with determined men and added more notches to her pistol than Brady.
Following the Civil War, territories became states and municipal law enforcement replaced federal jurisdictions reducing the use of bounty hunters. Brady and Kate set aside their bounty hunting hats and formed Modern Investigation Agency to service civil cases and special contracts let by Federal Judge, Andrew Blake.