Harrison Reed

Harrison Reed (1813 – 1899) moved from his native Massachusetts to Milwaukee in 1836. In Milwaukee he first failed as a merchant and then as the editor of the Milwaukee Sentinel Newspaper. Reed was successful; however, at developing valuable political connections, especially with Wisconsin territorial governor James Duane Doty. With the connivance of Doty, Reed bought the 562-acre Mission to the Menominee Indians at Winnebago Rapids, Wis. from the federal government, despite having no money. Reed renamed the settlement “Neenah.”

Reed eventually found a financial partner but conflicts doomed the partnership. Reed went back to publishing; starting another newspaper in 1856, by 1859 it was bankrupt. Reed accepted a political patronage job in Washington, D.C. with the Lincoln administration. Reed moved to Florida in 1863 when he was appointed tax commissioner for the state. He stayed in Florida after the Civil War and was elected governor in 1868. He served two terms and was impeached twice (but never convicted).

In 1873 Reed retired to a farm near Jacksonville. He was subsequently appointed Postmaster of Tallahassee and finally served in the state legislature until he died in 1899.