The Union Recorder

February 27, 2006

Historical Harrisburg

Family preserves history of their community for generations to come

Alexander Cain

No matter how closely you look, you won’t find Harrisburg listed on any map — unless you stop by and visit with James Finney.

“I started putting names and numbers in. I just pulled it one step by step,” said Finney. “I started writing little notes.”

For the last few years, Finney, 57, has spent countless hours investing his time into making sure the map he is helping to create of his neighborhood is as correct and accurate as possible.

He has paced through weeds and debris. He has pored over documents and talked to neighbors and relatives. He has walked and driven the roads that he played on as a boy.

There’s a lot at stake — if he succeeds, the map will be the first of its kind. To date, his is the only known map in existence that documents the nearly 200-year-old African-American community of Harrisburg in Hardwick, located between Highway 441 South and East Allen Memorial Drive.

For full story, please see the Feb. 25, 2006 edition of The Union-Recorder.