Harrison’s Mill History

Harrison’s Mill stood five miles south of Marion on Saline River. It was built by George H. Harrison when he returned with his Williamson County friends from the Black Hawk war. In 1833 he took his bride to live there. She was Delila Herrin, daughter of David and Sarah (Herring) Herrin and oldest grandchild of the preacher on Herrin’s prairie. David Ruffin Harrison (1834-1911) spent his babyhood at the water mill but the family soon returned to the more populous neighborhood of the prairie, where Mr. Harrison opened a store. When the county seat was a new town with good business opportunities, the public square was to have another Harrison store, but the miller and storekeeper died in 1848.

The mill on Saline gave its name to a voting district. When a Franklin county surveyor was elected September 1, 1838, the judges at Harrison precinct were Addison Reese, later one of the commissioners’ court; Sterling Hill, the storekeeper and member of Williamson county’s first commissioners’ court; and John L. Perry. Their clerks were Thomas Hue and Gabriel Sanders, and each was paid $1.

When the question of division was settled at an election in August 1839, votes in Harrison precinct were tallied by Azekiel Moak and Tippo S. Williams. The judges were James Hill, Henry Hudgens, and Meshack Hart. The latter two substituted for John Ward and Cudworth Harrison, appointed with Hill on June 5. In 1839, clerks received a raise to $1.25, but judges still drew $1.

The bounds of the election district are not found, but Harrison’s mill road district was set off by the Franklin County commissioner’s court June 11, 1839: “Begining where the Equality road leaves the old Golconda road in the Crab Orchard Bottom. Thence South east to Thomas Pulley so as to include Pulley in said road district. Thence to the nearest point on the Saline Creek, Thence up said Saline Creek one mile above George H. Harrison’s old mill, thence to the Lem Crain branch. Thence to the Cash Pond on the Crab Orchard, To the Bridge, Thence with said road to the forks of the said road Beginning.”

Thomas Haie was supervisor in this road district until June 1839, when John Bowyer succeeded him. The latter was a brother of Representative and Captain George P. Bowyer. Other road district bounds specify that John T. Davis of Sarahville and his hands work in Harrison’s mill district.

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(Extracted from Pioneer Folks and Places, Barbara Barr Hubbs, 1939, on sale at the Williamson County Museum)