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Biography of Harry P. Simpson

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Harry P. Simpson, editor of the Rock Island Argues, was born in Davenport, Iowa, on July 6, 1863, and moved to Rock Island in 1887. He attended the public schools in his native city, and while yet in high school he developed a decided taste for newspaper work, serving as reporter on a society paper called the Saturday Afternoon People. His work attracted attention and he was offered a position on the staff of the Davenport Gazette, which he accepted, representing that paper in a reportorial capacity in Rock Island and Moline. A little later he was made city editor of the Gazette and held that position for two years. He later served as city editor of the Davenport Herald. In 1887 he removed to Rock Island, having become city editor of the Argus. The Argus was then owned and edited by the late John W. Potter. After his death, in 1898, publication was continued by the J. W. Potter Company, consisting of Mrs. M. E. Potter, H. P. Simpson and the late James J. LaVelle, with Mr. Simpson as editor, a position he has filled to the present time with conspicuous ability and success. On August 12, 1884, Mr. Simpson was married to Miss Ella P. Skiles, daughter of H. M. G. and Eliza J. (McKissen) Skiles, a woman of beautiful character and many accomplishments, a devout member of the Episcopal Church, and whose untimely death, February 21, 1903, is mourned by a large circle. Two daughters, Miss Mary E. Simpson and Miss Dorothy B. Simpson, live to bless the union so happily formed. Mr. Simpson is the son of Joseph L. and Eliza A. (Purcell) Simpson the former a native of Missouri and the latter of South Carolina. Both are now deceased. The paternal grandfather, Dr. Robert Simpson, was a pioneer physician in St. Louis, Missouri, and one of the earlier sheriffs of St. Louis County. The maternal grandfather was a lawyer in South Carolina and a soldier in the Revolutionary War. Mr. Simpson is a member of the Tri-City Press Club, the Rock Island Club, the Press Club of Chicago, and the Illinois Press Association, and enjoys the friendship and’ esteem of a large acquaintance. His fraternal affiliation is with the Modern Wood-men and the National Union.

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