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City in Utah
Harrisville is a city in Weber County, Utah, United States. The population was 3,645 at the 2000 census. It is part of the Ogden–Clearfield, Utah Metropolitan Statistical Area. Wikipedia
Area: 2.7 mi²
Population: 5,915 (2013)


The earliest recorded history of the area now known as Harrisville relates a double tragedy: In 1850 Urban Stewart built the first house in what was to become Harrisville. It was constructed of logs and was located about 300 yards to the southwest of where the Harrisville chapel of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church) was later constructed. Stewart had planted a garden and watched over it with care. On the night of September 16, 1850, Stewart heard rustling out in his corn patch and saw a moving object, which he fired at, killing Chief Terikee, of the Shoshone people. The Indians retaliated by killing a white man named Campbell, a transient employee of Farr's Mill, and Stewart had to leave the country. The Indians were intent on destroying the Weber County settlement. When the LDS Church authorities sent 150 men to help secure the Weber colony, Terikee's band took the body of their chief and retreated northward.

In 1851 Martin Henderson Harris, for whom Harrisville was named and a nephew of Book of Mormon Witness Martin Harris, built a log home west of Four Mile Creek. Others soon followed: James Lake; Pleasant Green Taylor, who settled on the Urban Stewart claim; David Jenkins, who put up a small house on the south portion of Stewart's claim; William W. Dixon, who settled by a small creek that would bear his name; Stephen Ordway; Luman A. Shurtleff; and others.

In 1852, Haskel V. Shurtleff, Levi Murdock, Warren Child Sr., George Tiffany, and William Elder moved into the settlement. However, Indian trouble started again. Some houses were dismantled and moved into Bingham's Fort. Crops were planted, and the settlers would work on their farms, but they had to carry their guns to protect themselves from the Indians. The trouble eventually subsided and they moved back to their homes. Before they moved into the fort, the area farmers had just used the water from Four Mile Creek. After much effort, they received a charter and grant to take water from the Ogden River in November 1855.

Luman Shurtliff built an adobe house. Later Luman's son, Noah L. Shurtliff, made red brick by hand. A brickyard was later established, and local brick making turned into a major business. There has been a brickyard in Harrisville ever since.

In 1858, the town was briefly abandoned in the face of Johnston's Army during the Utah War, but the settlers returned to their homes that fall when the trouble was resolved peacefully.

Martin Henderson Harris at first taught school in his home, but as more people moved in, it was necessary to organize a school district and build a schoolhouse. Logs were brought from North Ogden Canyon and from Garner's Canyon and the 16-foot by 18-foot schoolhouse was finished in 1863; it had a dirt floor and a dirt roof. In 1867 a new two-room adobe schoolhouse was built which served for school, civic, and religious affairs.

In 1863 Harrisville was organized as a branch of the LDS Church, and in 1868 it was organized into a county precinct, at which time it was officially called Harrisville. It was organized as an LDS ward 28 May 1877. Church services were held in the east end of town in the Harrisville school building one Sunday and the following Sunday in the west end in the Farr West school building, alternating each week. A division was made in 1890, and two separate wards were organized.

After the ward was divided, a new LDS meetinghouse was needed. Bishop Pleasant Green Taylor donated the land (1300 North Harrisville Road). The church was dedicated in 1891. In 1913 it was added to, and in 1926 the building was renovated. Additional renovations took place in 1932, and 1937. In 1955, ground was broken for a new chapel and an addition to the existing meetinghouse, which was completed and dedicated in 1959. Another building addition took place in 1980. A new meetinghouse was erected in the ball field behind the existing building and was dedicated 7 May 2006. A short time later, the historic meeting house was removed. As Harrisville continued to grow, an additional LDS Church building located on 2000 North was completed in 1988, and one at 1650 North 400 West was completed and dedicated February 2000.

Both the Central Pacific Railroad and Union Pacific Railroad ran through Harrisville. In 1904 a local company laid tracks through Harrisville, Pleasant View, and on to Plain City. The line operated and ran through Harrisville for four years.

In 1871 a small post office was built. In 1875 there was a sawmill and a molasses mill on the banks of Four Mile Creek. TIn 1900 Parley Taylor had a cheese factory. By 1909 there was a harness shop, a shoemaker's shop, and a slaughterhouse. In more recent years, many businesses have found their way into Harrisville City's commercial districts including a Wal Mart Super Store.

On April 9, 1962, Harrisville became an incorporated township.

In 1976, in commemoration of the United States Bicentennial, the city purchased the property originally owned by the Martin Henderson Harris family for the Martin Henderson Harris Memorial Park. The Utah Bicentennial Committee provided most of the money and local citizens provided much of the labor. Included in the park is a centennial grove planted by community founder Martin H. Harris in 1876 to commemorate the nation's one hundredth birthday.