Andrew L. Harris

17 Nov 1835
13 Sep 1915
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Andrew Lintner Harris (also known as The Farmer-Statesman) (November 17, 1835 – September 13, 1915) was one of the heroes of the Battle of Gettysburg and the last Civil War general to serve as a governor in the U.S., serving as the 44th Governor of Ohio.

He quickly rose to the rank of Colonel of the 75th Ohio Infantry, seeing action in many of the Army of the Potomac’s engagements. At Gettysburg on July 1, 1863, he led his men in a successful withdrawal through the hotly contested streets to Cemetery Hill, where they entrenched on the northeastern slope.

Assuming command of a brigade, Harris played a key role in delaying repeated attacks the next day by Harry T. Hays’s famed Louisiana Tigers, helping secure the critical hill for George G. Meade. Harris continued to lead troops through the war, although he suffered an embarrassing defeat in August 1864 at the Battle of Gainesville in Florida.

An attorney, Harris began practicing law in 1865 and then served in the Ohio State Senate from 1866 to 1870 and as Preble County Probate Judge from 1875 to 1882.

Harris served as the 23rd and 29th Lieutenant Governor of Ohio having been elected in 1891 and 1893 as the running mate of William McKinley, and again in 1905, when Democrat John M. Pattison was elected governor. An early temperance activist and Republican politician, Harris succeeded Pattison (upon the latter’s death in June 1906) as governor, serving from 1906 to 1909.

He was renominated in 1908, but lost narrowly to Judson Harmon in the gubernatorial election. While in office, Harris signed legislation banning corporate political donations. Harris also served on the U.S. Industrial Commission on Trusts under President McKinley.

Per state law, U.S. 127 between Hamilton and Eaton was renamed the Gov. Andrew L. Harris Bicentennial Roadway.

At the Milford Township Bicentennial in 2005, the Gov. Andrew L. Harris Bicentennial Roadway was dedicated by the Governor’s relative, James Brodbelt Harris, president of the family reunion association and whose family continues to own an Ohio Century Farm in the township.

Harris died of heart trouble on September 13, 1915, and is interred in Mound Hill Union Cemetery, Eaton, Preble County, Ohio USA.

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