About this Famous Person
23rd President of the United States
Source : Tim DOWLING
The Harrisons were among the First Families of Virginia, with their presence in the New World dating back to the arrival of an Englishman, named Benjamin Harrison, at Jamestown, Virginia in 1630. The future president Benjamin was born on August 20, 1833, in North Bend, Hamilton County, Ohio, as the second of eight children of John Scott Harrison (later a U.S. Congressman from Ohio) and Elizabeth Ramsey Irwin. Benjamin was a grandson of President William Henry Harrison and great-grandson of revolutionary leader and former Virginia governor Benjamin Harrison V. Harrison was seven years old when his grandfather was elected President, but he did not attend the inauguration. Although Harrison's family was old and distinguished, he did not grow up in a wealthy household, as most of John Scott Harrison's farm income was expended on his children's education. Despite the meager income, Harrison's boyhood was enjoyable, with much of it spent outdoors fishing or hunting.
Benjamin Harrison's early schooling took place in a one-room schoolhouse near his home, but he was later provided with a tutor to help him with college preparatory studies. Harrison and his brother, Irwin, enrolled in Farmer's College near Cincinnati, Ohio in 1847. Harrison attended the college for two years. In 1850, he transferred to Miami University in Oxford, Ohio, where he was a member of the fraternity Phi Delta Theta and graduated in 1852. Harrison attended Miami University with John Alexander Anderson, who would become a six term congressman, and Whitelaw Reid, who would be Harrison's vice presidential candidate in his reelection campaign. While attending Miami University, Harrison was greatly influenced by one his professors, Robert Hamilton Bishop, who instructed him in history and political economy. At Miami, Harrison joined a Presbyterian church and, like his mother, he would remain a member for the rest of his life. After completing college Harrison took up the study of law in the Cincinnati law office of Storer & Gwynne, but before completing his law studies he returned to Oxford to marry.
While at Farmer's College, Harrison met Caroline Lavinia Scott, the daughter of the University's president, John W. Scott, a Presbyterian minister. On October 20, 1853, they married in Oxford, Ohio, with Caroline's father performing the ceremony. The Harrisons had two children, Russell Benjamin Harrison (August 12, 1854 – December 13, 1936), and Mary "Mamie" Scott Harrison McKee (April 3, 1858 – October 28, 1930).