April 21 – Happy Birthday Harrison Wilson Jr.

Harrison Wilson Jr.

I’m a diehard fan of the New York football Giants and have been all my life. When two NFL football teams are playing and one of them is not my Big Blue, it’s accurate to say that I have really never cared who won, even if happens to be the Super Bowl that I’m watching. But that apathetic attitude has changed these past couple of Giant-less Super Bowls and the reason is a connection to Amsterdam.

When Russell Wilson threw that last play interception against the Patriots in the 2015 Super Bowl I have to admit it upset me almost as much as a Giants’ defeat. And the year before, when Wilson led those same Seahawks to their first ever world title, I felt a definite tinge of the same familiar thrill I got when the Giants won each of their Lombardi trophies.

Russell Wilson is the great grandson of Harrison Wilson Sr. Harrison Sr. was the son of a slave. He moved to Amsterdam in the early 1900s and got a job working for a local builder named Thomas McGibbon. On April 21, 1925, Harrison’s wife Marguerite gave birth to Harrison Wilson Jr. who would grow up to be an outstanding student athlete at Wilbur Lynch High School. In January of 1943…

You can read the rest of my story about this Amsterdam native in my new book “A Year’s Worth of Amsterdam Birthdays.” To order your copy, click here.

2 thoughts on “April 21 – Happy Birthday Harrison Wilson Jr.

  1. Do you know what years the Wilson parking lot operated. When I read it, it sounded vaguely familiar. Great story. Once again, fantastic reporting.


  2. I know he was there around 1960. I remember parking in that lot. The charge was 25 cents. Mr Wilson was always a gentleman.


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