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Madie Carroll House Preservation Society


As legend goes, the Madie Carroll House arrived in Guyandotte by flatboat in 1810. James Gallaher, a river tradesman, had obtained the house in Gallipolis, Ohio and placed the house on lot number 34 in Guyandotte. At one time, Mr. Gallaher owned over 20 lots in Guyandotte. He later became a prominent business man in the area, and he was a trustee for Marshall Academy in 1838, which is now Marshall University. By 1836, he had moved out of Guyandotte and onto the old Russell farm then located along the Ohio River between 14th street and 11th street, Huntington, West Virginia. Mr. Gallaher and his descendants continued to prosper in this area. One son, John Gallaher, founded Gallahersville; one daughter, Ann, married Robert Poage, a prominent business man of Ashland, Kentucky; another daughter, Sarah, married J. Harvey Poage and inherited the family farm; and another son, James, married Mary, daughter of Samuel W. Johnson.

Thomas Carroll arrived in Guyandotte, Virginia. in 1852. Thomas, his wife, Anne Burnes, and their children - Thomas, Michael, Austin, Margaret - moved into their new home, November 2, 1852. The home, at the time belonged to Lucian M. Wolcott, and he later sold Mr. Carroll the home in 1855.

Thomas Carroll operated his home as an inn on the James River and Kanawha Turnpike. He obtained his first license to operate an "ordinary" (inn), December 1853. In 1854, along with others in Cabell County, Mr. Carroll was declined a license for an ordinary, but was given a license to operate a "house of private entertainment." After Thomas died, Mary Carroll continued to obtain licenses to operate an inn. The inn was know as the "Carroll House." According to other sources, Thomas also made his living as a carpenter and a stone mason.

Mary Carroll saved the house from destruction, November 11, 1861, when the Federal Troops burned most of the town of Guyandotte. She barricaded herself and children in the brick kitchen of the house. However, the Carroll family did lose property during the burning of the town. In 1892, Mary Carroll requested that the Federal Government pay her for the loss of a second dwelling and two story frame storage building/barn. J.H. Write bore witness to the loss in an affidavit he signed May 2, 1892, and he stated that the "claimant was and is loyal to the US Government."

The Carroll family members were the first Catholics in Cabell County. the Carroll home served as a house of worship before a Catholic Church, St. Peters in Guyandotte, could be built in the are in 1873. The first parish priest, Father Thomas A. Quirk, lived in the Carroll house from 1872 to 1884. Father Quirk, at that time, was transferred to Lewis County, West Virginia, where he worked diligently with the poor. Because of his good works, he became know as "the Padre of the Mountains."

Collis P. Huntington stopped by the Carroll house in 1869. Legend relates that Mr. Huntington became angry with Guyandotte for fining him when his horse became un-tethered and ran lose in town. For this reason, or another, Collis P. Huntington did not build his railroad terminus at Guyandotte.

The Carroll family continued to live and prosper in the Carroll house. They owned several other pieces of property throughout the county. The only two children of Thomas Carroll to marry were Michael Henry Carroll, who married Elizabeth W. Downy, and Caroline "Ellen," who married James McLaughlin. Michael and Elizabeth had six children: Thomas, Stephen M. Annie, Mary E. Madie Carroll, Ellen and Lawrence Leo. Michael and his sons, Stephen and Thomas, worked for the railroad. Madie lived in her step-grandmother Mary's home after her mother died. Also, Madie's uncle Charles (graduate of St. Francis College, Loretta, Pennsylvania; partner in McLaughlin and Carroll grocery; timber measurer for Cole and Crane; member of Guyandotte Council; and other civic and religious organizations), her maiden aunt, Mayme (graduate of Marshall College, 1886 school teacher), and two other aunts, Catherine and Margaret, lived in the Carroll house.

Madie inherited the home from her aunt Mayme, who had inherited the home from her mother, Mary. Madie taught piano for many years. In the 1924 Polk City Directory, she was listed as teaching music at St. Edward's College. She had immense pride in her heritage, especially her home. She often passed time with neighbors and friends talking about the house and its history. She was still living in her home when the house was listed on The National Register of Historic Places, June 1973. Madie died in 1975 and left her nephew, Lewis Carroll, the historic home. Mr. Carroll rented the house to several occupants.

The home was deeded to the Greater Huntington Parks and Recreation District on October 10, 1984 by Lewis and Helena Carroll "to consummate a gift of certain real property for the use and benefit of the people served by the Greater Huntington Parks and Recreation District." The Madie Carroll House Preservation Society, Inc. received permission form the Greater Huntington Parks and Recreation District in 1988 to restore the house for use as an historic house museum and cultural community center. The Madie Carroll House Preservation Society, Inc. incorporated and received tax exempt status in 1989.

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