I read your message with considerable interest.My great uncle Willis Alford (enumerated as Olford in 1850) was born 1845 in Washington Parish, LA.
As you know Tangipahoa Parish was not created until 1869 coming from St. Helena, Washington, St. Tammany, and Livingston Parishes.The Alfords were primarily in St. Helena and Washington Parish.Three generations of my Alfords lived in Washington Parish.The Alfords in St. Helena Parish were from a different branch of the family although my parents did live there for a number of years.
I think the key to finding your ancestor might be based on when he would have changed his name.Hansford was not a common name in the Alfords of that area but Willis was.The progenitor of the St. Helena Alfords was a Julius Harmon Alford b. 1819 in MS; and in Washington was Jacob Alford b. 1761 in NC.It will help if you have any idea as to which pariah your ancestor was born-- St. Helena, Washington or what?
If you have other persons that might have been Alford or married into the Alfords I'd be happy to look for them for you.
I'm with the Alford American Family Association, Inc (www.alfordfamilies.org) which held its 2004 annual meeting/reunion in Louisiana.