Sunday, March 30, 2014

Don Pedro de Alvarado Wysong (1851-1941)

                   Wysong and his grandson Stewart,  from the History of Meade County, Kansas, 1916.

    A prominent local office holder in southern Kansas, Don Pedro de Alvarado Wysong's political notoriety rests on his service as County Attorney for Meade County, Kansas for one term. Listed  in the 1916 History of Meade County, Kansas as "D.P. Wysong", a later Google search revealed his full name to be "Don Pedro de Alvarado Wysong", according to the Rootsweb genealogical website. A native of Virginia, Wysong was born in that state on June 16, 1851, one of ten children born to Lewis and Eleanor Burke Wright Wysong. He is presumed to have been given his unusual name in honor of Don Pedro de Alvarado (1584-1641), the famed 16th century conquistador, military leader and Guatemalan governor, nowadays remembered for being "violent, cruel and ruthless" during his conquest of both the Mayan and Aztec empires. 
  Wysong's exact birth location is given as occurring in either Bedford County or Franklin County, Virginia, and he married in the town of Stewartsville in April 1876 to Medora "Dora" Stewart, with whom he had three children, James Thomas (1877-1920), Mary Lucy (died aged two in 1882) and Ansel Stewart (1884-1962). Little is known of Wysong's early life in Virginia, although it has been found that he attended Washington and Lee University in Virginia from 1880-1881.
  Don Pedro Wysong removed from Virginia to Meade County Kansas in 1885 and during his residency here took part in "teaching, contracting, farming" and later established a law practice. In the late 1890s he entered county politics, serving as Meade County Superintendent in 1892-1893 and was clerk of Meade County from 1902-1906. In 1908 he was elected as county attorney for Meade County and served one term in office, being defeated for reelection in 1910 by Frank S. Sullivan, the Democratic candidate.
  At some point after 1910 Wysong and his family removed from Kansas to California, settling in Alameda County, where his occupation was that of a "poultryman". He was later a resident of Hayward, California and died a few months short of his ninetieth birthday on January 19, 1941. Wysong was later interred at the Cypress Lawn Memorial Park in Colma, San Mateo County, California.

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