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Here’s why we like the name Harrisburg Elementary School

November 26, 2013 

I was fortunate to be on the naming committee of the new elementary school on Harrisburg Road in Indian Land. The committee unanimously recommended the school be named Harrisburg Elementary School.

The school mascot will be the Tomahawks and the colors gold, blue and white.

Lindsey Pettus, Indian Land historian, gave us an interesting report on Harrisburg Road. Harrisburg was the site of Harrisburg Academy, the first school in Indian Land. Along with the school and a few houses, early histories of this region describe an Indian trading path to the south of the Nation Ford trading path referred as the “Road to Cheraws.”

Not only was Harrisburg Road traveled by two young boys who later became presidents, Andrew Jackson and James K. Polk, but General Cornwallis traveled up Harrisburg Road on the way to Charlotte where he encountered the “Hornets Nest” and retreated to the area of the Harrisburg camp.

It was said that George Washington stopped while on his “Southern Tour” at Barr’s tavern, located a mile and a half of modern day Lancaster, then known as Barnettsville. Washington ordered a bowl of “mush and milk” and paid for his meal by placing a silver half coin in his empty bowl before handing it to Barr’s daughter. From there he traveled north into Mecklenburg County on Harrisburg Road.

This short class on Harrisburg Road made me realize how important this historic road is and, hopefully, on Dec. 10 the school board will approve the name Harrisburg Elementary School.

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone.

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