This column is part of a feature series which focuses on a different Centre County family each week. Five new columns will be released each month unless some technical difficulty enters the picture.
This column's focus is on HARRIS. An effort has been made to identify all persons carrying that name in the 1890 U.S. Census, using the Centre County business directory which was formed from a preliminary review of that census before the larger set of 1890 U.S. Census records was destroyed by fire. (Sadly, the postal directory does not typically provide the ages of females, but it's the best record we've got).
Four books in the Pennsylvania Room of the Centre County Library in Bellefonte apparently deal with the Harris family. They are: Walter Braun's The John Harris Family Connection, William Mervine's Harris, Dunlop, Valentine and Allied Families, Jesse Seaver's Harris Family History, and Robert Stewart's Colonel George Stewart and His Wife Margaret Harris.
There are 39 different first-name entries for Harris in John Blair Linn's History of Centre and Clinton County (1883). In addition, there are many references to the name in Beers' Commemorative Biographical Record of Central Pennsylvania (1898).
And, now, your ancestors' HARRIS neighbors in 1890:
In BELLEFONTE Borough:
Anna B.--3 E. Linn Ellen--106 N. Spring George F., 47, physician--14 W. High Mary W. Catherine C. Adeline Henry P., 64, undertaker--27 E. Howard Mary C. Wilbur F. 28 Hardman P., 26 Lydia T. James H. 21 John T. 14 James, 57, dealer in hardware--24 N. Spring Lavina C. Jane John, 56, druggist--138 E. Curtin Rachael A. Joseph D. 17 Edward D. 13 Charles M. 10 Jennie George 5 Anna Mary John P., 57, banker--103 W. Linn Mary R. James L. 26 Edith Emily E. John P. Jr. 17 Edward 16 Harold 14 Elizabeth P. Molten, 66, laborer--Cedar Alley Laura Susan--12 S. Spring
In BOGGS Township:George F., 60, laborer--Milesburg Hannah
In PATTON Township:Frank, 29, engineer--Benore Eva Orvis 1 John, 37--Buffalo Run Mary E. Mary E. William H. 12
In PHILIPSBURG Borough:John C. 16--2nd St. William H., 40, laborer--6th St. Hannah John C. 16 Mary H. Bertha Sarah A. Carrie E. Lillie Violet M.
In SPRING Township:Thomas J., 43, puddler--Bellefonte Margaret Bessie A.
In WALKER Township:Christian, 72--Nittany Sarah E. John B., 35, farmer--Nittany Janet Oscar B. 13 Benjamin F. 11 William P. 9 Robert H. 7 John B. 5 Mary R. Blanche L.