Tombstone Tuesday: John Thomas Harrison Sr.

John Thomas Harrison Sr.
Greenwood Cemetery, New Bern, NC

My great grandfather John Thomas Harrison (Dec 3, 1892--June 22, 1974) died before I turned 2, so I didn't get a chance to know him. My mother recalls that he was a tall and slender and I think my grandfather's build was attributable to him.  My mother met him as a child and recalled he lived in a house Brown's Alley in New Bern that had blue and white trim, and had one window on the second floor that faced out toward the street. I was able to obtain a copy of a deed that was made out to Carrie Harrison's parents Samuel Whitney and Sarah Jane Harris Whitney.  Carrie was John Thomas's wife who passed away in 1939. Anyway, the deed information tells by lot where the home was located in the city grid. I have to follow up with an email to the Kellenberger Room of the New Bern Public Library to see if they have an old city map that plots property out by lots to confirm the exact location but I did happen to check out Google Maps and found this house on Brown's Ave (Brown's Alley was renamed to Brown's Ave).

I showed my mother this picture and she couldn't confirm if it was her grandfather's house because she had visited the house only once when she was a small child. I will keep you posted when I find out for sure but I think we may have a winner folks. 


  1. If you have the address, google it and a picture of the house might come up. I have been able to identify a few houses and a church that way.

  2. Thanks for the heads up. I do have the address but when you plug it in to google maps it comes up on the corner of Brown's Ave. I know from family that it was located further in on the block. Sometimes the google maps is a little off when you plug in addresses.

  3. I was able to find my great great grandparents' house by googling the address - it is in a historic district of Santa Cruz and even mentions the year it was built and who it was built for (my great great grandfather). It is so great to be able to see exactly where they lived in the late 1800's.

    I hope this is a winner for you.

  4. Thanks for the idea, Yvette! My husband has relatives who lived on Tin Cup Alley (I had thought it was an error at first!)in New would be interesting to see if there is a house associated with the address today!

  5. Hey Debra, if you find that you can't find tin cup alley on the map, the name may have been changed in the 50's. That was the case for a couple of my ancestors who lived on a different street. I wrote Victor at Kellenber Room and he was able to tell me what the street name was changed to.

  6. Debra, if you don't mind me asking, what are the name of relatives that lived on Tin Cup Alley? The reason why I ask is that I have ancestors that are listed on the 1880 census--Brisow Harris and family who are listed on the Alley with No Name. I believe this is the earliest reference to Brown's Alley. Anyway, I noticed if you go futher down the page the next street they have listed is Tin Cup Alley.


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