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List of Notes and Resources               Harry S. Prior Family Page

Notes on Harry S. Prior


From "History of Harrison County, Iowa",(1891)
Also available online at the Harrison County IaGenWeb Project

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          PRIOR - Harry H. PRIOR, who has been a resident of Iowa, since 1867, and of Harrison County, since 1869, and is now (1891) resident of section 33, of Harrison Township, will form the subject of this notice.
          Mr. PRIOR is a native of Chittenden County, Vermont, where he was born January 1, 1821. Here he passed his early life and received his education, in common with other Green Mountain boys. He is a son of Robert and Laura (HARD) PRIOR, both natives of Vermont, and is a grand-son of Heman PRIOR, and Stpehen HARD. The latter was one of the leading men of his county, and was a member of the State Assembly for many years. Our subject remained in his native State, until 1867, when like many other New England inhabitants, he was tired of the "everlasting hills," and believed that the great West, with its roling prairies, and unclaimed lands, would give him a more profitable field in which to operate, than among the stumps and stones of Vermont, so he came to Marshall County, where he purchased a farm, erected a good residence, and made other substantial improvements, but at the end of two years, sold his place, and removed to Harrison County, Iowa, where he purchased a quarter section of wild prairie land, on section 33, of Harrison Township, with no improvements of any importance, to be seen in any direction.
          Here he located in the midst of tall prairie grass, rolling like the waves of an ocean, with the determination to build for himself and family a home. Deer and prairie chickens, were seen on every hand, and every thing looked new and wild. He has made many valuable improvements, keeping pace with those around him in the march of cultivation and development, and though laboring under adverse circumstances for several years, he now is in possession of one of the best farms of its size in the county. Owing to sickness in the family he was kept in and around the house a greater portion of seven years. When our subject and his wife started in life they embarked with nothing but their own hands and goodwill to cary them through, and how well they succeeded is shown by their suroundings to-day.
          They live in the original house which they erected in 1869, which is a frame structure 18x26 feet with an addition 12x14 feet. The upright is two stories high, and was the best building in the county for some time after it was built. It is surrounded by a fine artificial grove, each tree of which is living, growing monument to the good sense of the pioneer whose hands planted it out. There is also an excellent young orchard on the premises, together with everything that goes toward making up a valuable farm.
          He was married Jauary 16, 1843, to Lucretia Day, who was born in Vermont February 9, 1823. She is the daughter of Edward and Susanna (RANSOM) DAY, and the grand-daughter of Samuel DAY and Moses RANSOM, who were among the earlier settlers of New England. Mr. and Mrs. PRIOR, as has been related came West in 1867, with their family consisting of seven children -- Laura Endora, wife of George MOORE, a resident of Harrison Township; John M., a resident of Monona County; Alson C., a resident of Douglas Township; Hoyt H., a resident of Omaha, NE; Fred J., residing at home; Ellen, wife of Joseph LANE, of Pottawattamie County; and Lettie, wife of Henry HOAG, a resident of Lincoln Township.
          Politically, our subject is a stanch supporter of the Republican party, and he and his wife are members of the Univeralist Church at Marshalltown.


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