York historian on William Henry Harrison: a ‘great and good man’
William Henry Harrison is one of number of presidents whose funeral train stopped in York. (To see a list of other visits by presidents or presidental candidates, click here.) Background posts: Barbara Bush at Crispus Attucks: ‘It’s something they will remember the rest of their lives’ and Isabel Small led procession of women who made wreath for Abe Lincoln’s coffin and Bill Goodling: Jerry Ford might have been the most important president he served with.
Gen. William Henry Harrison, candidate for the U.S. presidency, visited York in 1836 and received a welcome befitting the “Hero of Tippecanoe.”
In 1841, a train carrying Harrison’s body – President Harrison’s body – stopped in York, where a solemn audience honored the memory of the man who died in office… .
George W. Prowell’s “History of York County,” begins an account of that ceremony:
“The sacred relics of a great and good man were brought from Washington to Baltimore on Saturday last, and remained in the latter city until Monday morning… . A committee on the part of the (York) volunteers and citizens started early on Monday morning to meet the incoming train from Baltimore and attend it to town.”
Trains bearing the bodies of Abraham Lincoln and James Garfield also stopped in York. A contributing reason for the visits is that the steam engines pulling the special trains stopped for water in York.
One possible reason for Harrison’s popularity in York: His father, Benjamin, had served in the Continental Congress, meeting in York in 1777-78.
For more posts on presidential visits, click here.