By Linda Cunningham Fluharty.
A photograph album, originally belonging to James Forsyth Harrison, was purchased by this writer in 2005. In addition to the album, there is a letter written by J. Forsyth Harrison, age 15, when he was a POW at Libby Prison during the Civil War. Also included is his program and dance card from an event hosted by General Crook at the Revere House in Cumberland, Maryland on Feb 17, 1865, just a few days before Generals Crook and Kelley were captured by the enemy and taken to Richmond. Finally, there are some ambrotype and tintype images, most of which are not identified.
Each member of the immediate family has been researched and a biography of the family has been compiled. It will not be posted online because of the high cost paid for these artifacts, and the possibility that they might have to be sold one day.
The Harrison family was an important one in the annals of West Virginia History. George Harrison was a delegate to the convention at Wheeling, for the purpose of forming the new government that would become the state of West Virginia. He had three sons in the Civil War, two of whom were officers, Charles J. and George W. Harrison. A third son, James Forsyth Harrison, non-enlisted and under age (15), was in charge of a detachment of the Pennsylvania Ringgold Cavalry, and managed to be captured and imprisoned at the infamous Libby Prison.
Victoria M. B. Harrison, daughter of George Harrison, was married to Captain George W. Jenkins of the Ringgold Cavalry, Company "A' of the 22nd Pennsylvania Cavalry.
The brother-in-law of George Harrison, was Simeon Woodrow, a name found in the list of those who voted the secession ticket. The list is referred to by some as the "List of Traitors," although, in fact, Simeon took no side during the war.