Featured, Local History, The Centennial History of Hurricane

Centennial History of Hurricane: Meet Some of Hurricane’s Oldest Families

In 1988, The Centennial History of Hurricane, WV was published to commemorate the town’s 100th anniversary. Since the Centennial History is now out of print, the Breeze is reprinting articles from the book as space allows. This week’s selection will be the 219th installment of the Centennial History.


Submitted by Mildred Harrison Spurlock

Our Confederate grandfathers, Thomas E. Spurlock and John H. Harrison, moved from Giles and Tazewell County, Virginia just after the Civil War to the Valley Fork and Teays Valley areas of West Virginia, where they both wanted to seek a better way of life in the free counties of western Virginia. Then their grandchildren, Thomas J. Spurlock, son of A.O. (Drew) and Virginia Ratcliff Spurlock and Mildred Harrison, daughter of Homer H. and Nannie Jane Henson Harrison, met in Hurricane, West Virginia, and were married November 12, 1936. To us were born two sons, Thomas J. Spurlock, Jr. (October 4, 1938) and Richard Harrison Spurlock (April 29, 1941).

Tom was employed at the Union Carbide for 10 years and I taught in one-room schools for 5 years in Putnam County. Life was great here with all our friends and relatives but in 1944, we decided to “Move On” and find a home in the farm lands across the Ohio River. We first moved to a dairy farm near Albany, Ohio, but after four years, we again “Moved On” to a farm in Meigs County. We enjoyed life here very much-everyone made us feel most welcome. Tom stayed busy with his dairy and buying and selling farms. I was busy with my homemaking, teaching private piano lessons and teaching school for five years.

Our life on the farm and the growing up of our sons was wonderful – in fact, an unforgettable memory. Both boys graduated from Albany High School. Tom, Jr., became interested in police work and a week after graduation in 1956, he was accepted into the Federal Bureau of Investigation in Washington, D.C. After a couple of years of working and studying he “Moved On” to Miami, Florida to work in the Dade County Sheriff’s Office. He married Sue Ellen Bridges, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Olin H. Bridges. They have 2 children, Charlene Michele and Thomas Michael. Tom, Jr. graduated from Florida International University in Miami, Florida and presently a Division Chief in the Dade County Sheriff’s Department.

Richard H. graduated from Albany High School and attended Ohio University for 3 years. Then he had the opportunity to work at the National Radio Astronomy Observatory in Greenbank, West Virginia where he worked for nearly 3 years. Being interested in electronics since high school, he decided to make Electronic Hospital Equipment (installing and repairing) his life’s work so he “Moved On.” He is presently located in Columbus, Ohio.

So the years have rolled by – Tom and I live on a 25 acre farm now. It has been almost 43 years since we left out home in Hurricane and we will never forget it but Ohio has been good for us and we have made many friends so we think we will stay here as long as the Lord wills it for us.


A digital copy of the Centennial History can be obtained from the Hurricane City Hall for a small donation. For more information, call the City of Hurricane at (304) 562-5896.

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