Biographical sketch of JACOB P. HARSEN from the book entitled, "Biographical Memoirs of Saint Clair County, Michigan," published in 1903 by B. F. Bowen Publishers in Logansport, Indiana.
This bio spans two (2) pages: 638-639
JACOB P. HARSEN
This experienced and enterprising farmer was born on Harsen Island, in St. Clair county, Michigan, November 25, 1829, a son of William and Isabella (McCollum) Harsen, the former of whom was a native of Albany, New York, and the latter of Scotland.Jacob Harsen, paternal grandfather of Jacob P., came from the Empire state in 1769, and was the first of the family to come to St. Clair county, Michigan.He settled on the island which has since borne his name, the island, like all the surrounding country, being at that time the home of numerous redskins and wild animals.Mr. Harsen was a gunsmith by trade and the only one in that region of the country, but was always friendly with the Indians.His island home comprised over three thousand acres, for which he received a grant from the government, and there he worked at his trade, farmed traded with the Indians and there passed the remainder of his life.He was the father of six children, William, James, Francis, Jacob, Barney and Catherine.William Harsen, the father of Jacob P. Harsen and the eldest of the above family, came west with his father, William, and grew to manhood on Harsen Island.He was married in St. Clair county, but lost his wife in December, 1829, and for a second wife married the widow Simmons, a native of Pennsylvania.To William and Isabella (McCollum) Harsen were born eight children, named as follows:James, Oliver, William, Henry and Mary (twins), John, Barney and Jacob P., the last named being the only survivor.William Harsen, the father of this family, did a great deal of hinting, trapping and fishing in early life, and also cleared up a great deal of land, of which he owned six hundred and forty acres.He died a true and faithful member of the Presbyterian church and was greatly respected by all who knew him, and that included nearly everybody in St. Clair county.
Jacob P. Harsen was a babe but six weeks old when his mother was called away, and the child was adopted and reared by a paternal uncle, Jacob Harsen, whose sole heir he became, receiving five hundred and forty acres of farming land, as well as everything he possessed, horses, cattle, etc., Jacob dying when he was but fifty-five years old.March 8, 1851, Jacob P. Harsen married Miss Polly A. Perry, who was born in Canada, a daughter of James W. and Elizabeth (Ward) Perry, who came to St. Clair county in 1837, and settled in Clay township, at Point Tremble, and here he and his wife passed the remainder of their days.
To the marriage of Jacob P. Harsen and Polly A. Perry have been born the following named children:Mary L., deceased wife of Alfred Johnson, who is also deceased, leaving two children, Harry, who has since died, and Burton, a sailor; Augustus is the proprietor of the Kimball House at Algonac, and is married to Nancy Lee, who has borne him three children, viz: Clark, Florence and Floyd; the third child is named Alfred, lives at Grand Point, and is married to Etta Johnson, who has borne him two children, Mabel and Maggie.Mr. Harsen was but a lad of ten when his uncle Jacob died and he chose his brother William as his guardian, with whom he lived till twenty-one, when he took possession of the property and to which he has ever since devoted his attention.His residence was built before he was born by his uncle Jacob and on which practically his entire life has passed.
In 1769 the north channel of the St. Clair river was the boundary line, Harsen island being in Canada.Jacob Harsen bought the island of its Indian owners, five chiefs signing the grant.Harsen was an Indian trader and free buyer.By later arrangements the island passed to the United States, the south channel being deemed the boundary.He carried on general farming, cattle raising, fruit growing, etc., and has made a success of life at this place, having never been away from home with the exception of five days, and out of the state but once.Mr. Harsen is a member of the Methodist church, to which he is a liberal contributor, is well known throughout St. Clair county, and is greatly respected everywhere.
PLEASE NOTE:I do not have any personal interest in researching the HARSEN surname or the St. Clair county, Michigan location.I am merely posting a select number of the biographical sketches found in the above-referenced book *upon specific written request* as a service to the genealogical community.Therefore, please do not contact me with regard to research interests in the above.Thank you.