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Centennial History of Hurricane (1994 Edition): Allen and Laura Hysell Family

Allen and Laura Hysell

In 1988, The Centennial History of Hurricane, WV was published to commemorate the town’s 100th anniversary. In 1994, the Centennial Committee published a follow up book which included family histories which were not submitted in time for the 1988 Centennial History. This week’s selection is the 18th history from The Centennial History of Hurricane WV Continued — 1994.

Submitted by O. R. Miller

Allen Hysell was born in 1855 in Meigs County, Ohio, and was the son of Francis Jr. and Mary Jane Sampson Hysell. Laura Louise was born in 1854 and was the daughter of William N. and Sallie Ann Russell Hysell. Her family later moved to the Milton area.

Allen and Laura were married in the mid-1870’s. Why they eventually came to the Hurricane area is not known, but how they came is interesting. By 1880, they had moved to Michigan, living near Lansing, and were the parents of four children. Traveling by wagon, they returned to Meigs County, Ohio in the mid-1880’s.

They arrived in Pomeroy late one evening, totally unaware that the town was under quarantine for a smallpox epidemic. Somehow they passed the pickets at the edge of town unnoticed. Supposedly, no one was allowed to enter or leave during the quarantine. Not wanting to stay and jeopardize the health of his children, Allen made plans to leave. He arranged for a large “John” boat to be concealed at river’s edge and after darkness, the family, and what belongings there was room for, got in the boat and floated down to Guyandotte, WV. From there, they made their way to Sycamore Creek a few miles south of Hurricane.

They lived for a time on the old Neal farm then moved to Huntington. They later moved back to Sycamore and lived on the John Miller farm. They eventually moved back to Huntington where Allen was with the fire department. Their last move was to the Milton area near some of Laura’s relatives. But they always thought of the Hurricane area as home and are buried in Sycamore Cemetery.

They were the parents of:

Clad Francisco, who, after marriage, moved to Clay County and was a minister and coal miner.
Twins, Ida and Iva. Ida married Ed Fizer and lived in Huntington where they raised a large family. Iva Jane married Jack Miller, remained on Sycamore and they were the parents of Roco, Garley, Joe and Bill.
Letha (Leafy) married Floyd Miller, remained on Sycamore and they were the parents of Bessie (Smith), and Edith (Mitchell).

The Hysell name is no longer common in Hurricane, but whether the name is Mitchell, Fizer, Raines, Miller, Burdette, Smith and others, descendants of Allen and Laura are to be found in abundance.

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