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Hurricane, Washington County, Utah

Hurricane was settled in 1906. It derived its name from the Hurricane Fault, which was so named by Erastus Snow, a Mormon Church official, because he was caught here in a storm. The Hurricane Camp DUP marker tells us:

"In 1863 settlers on the upper Virgin River whose lands were being washed away, made preliminary surveys for irrigating and occupying these lands. Erastus Snow, David H. Cannon and Nephi Johnson came down the hill over an old Indian trail, with a heavy buggy drawn by mules, using ropes to keep it from tipping. A whirl-wind took the top off the buggy. Erastus Snow exclaimed, 'Well, that was a Hurricane, we'll name this the Hurricane Hill.' The fault, bench and town were named from this event. - Hurricane Camp, D.U.P." (Marker Inscription)

Hurricane was one of the later places to be settled in Washington County, coming into existence after completion of the Hurricane Canal. The idea for a canal to irrigate the Hurricane bench had been around as early as 1867 but the project had to wait until there was the engineering expertise, equipment, and money available. The Hurricane Canal Company was incorporated Sept. 1, 1893, and the work of construction commenced the following winter. The project had its setbacks including having to rebuild the dam twice, hard back-breaking pick-and-shovel work, and nearly running out of capital. After the LDS Church bought $5,000 in shares from the canal company, the work was able to go forth, and thereby the tunnels and canal were made a success. The Hurricane town site was surveyed in 1896, and in March of that year the first few houses were built on the new town site. Arrival of the water meant families could start building homes on the bench. Within two years, about a dozen families had arrived. There were more takers for the land and soon more arrived and within a few years, 2,000 acres were under cultivation. The water came through a canal suspended in a rock-lined delivery channel elevated above the town on the edge of the Hurricane Fault. The Hurricane bench did prove to be great farmland and the people of Hurricane are well-known for their harvests especially their fruit. By the year 1930 the population of Hurricane was 1197. Hurricane is still one of the largest towns in the area and is currently bulging at the seams along with the rest of the county.  --CBA 


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Note to all:

If you have histories of the Hurricane pioneers (on a website or that you would like to have published on the web), other genealogy help for this town, or know of related links please let me know.
--Cindy Alldredge

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Copyright © 2001, 2006 by Cynthia B. Alldredge