John Harris - Simon Cameron House
219 S. Front Street
Harrisburg, Dauphin County, Pennsylvania, 17104
Photo: License: Public Domain
The Simon Cameron House is a historic house museum in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. Built in 1766 and frequently extended and altered, it is one of Harrisburg's oldest buildings.
Its main block is a 2-1/2 story stone structure, with a side gable roof. It is built out of mortared limestone, and is fronted by a single-story porch with fluted columns and arched Victorian valances. The main facade is four bays wide, with the main entrance in the center-left bay, topped by a tall transom window. Three gabled dormers pierce the front roof face. A long two-story ell extends the main block to the rear, giving the house an overall off-center T shape.
The house was built about 1766 by John Harris Jr., son of one of the first settlers of the region, and for whose father Harrisburg is named. The house remained in the Harris family until 1835. In 1853 it was adapted for use as the Pennsylvania Female College, which was forced into bankruptcy in 1861, due to turmoil caused by the American Civil War. It was then purchased by Simon Cameron, who had been on the college's board of directors. Cameron's heirs donated the house to the Historical Society of Dauphin County in 1941.
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