Nancy Luce the first to keep pet chickens?

Who was Nancy Luce?

Nancy Luce was one of the first people to keep chickens as pets until her passing on this day (April 9) in 1890. She is a pet chicken folk legend so-to-speak, called “The Madonna of the Hens," "a patron saint of pet chickens," and most infamously "The Chicken Lady of Martha's Vineyard." 

The pet chicken community loves Nancy Luce, you can read all about her life here:

You could say... eccentric

Nancy Luce had no shortage of eccentricities (ahem... I know a few other Luces that are a bit that way.) Her life was something of a tragedy, her chickens were her emotional support, her shelter from loneliness, company during sickness, and the subject of her life's work. She commissioned grave stones for them when they passed away, wrote poetry about them, and spent a disproportionate amount of her savings on having photographs taken of herself with her bantam hens.

nancy luce chicken headstones

You may have noticed a similarity in our last names... yes, we're distant relatives (very distant.) I learned a bit about my genealogy tracing it back. Apparently there were a few Luce relatives that were chicken farmers back in the day.

We're planning a small product launch in her honor, stay tuned by signing up for our mailing list in the footer below!


From our coop to yours,

Leanne Luce & the Studio Cluck flock