General, U.S. Army
Approximately one-half mile north of this location is the birthplace of Hugh Pate Harris. He was born there on June 15, 1909. At a young age, Hugh and his family moved to Lawrence County, Tennessee. After graduating from Columbia Military Academy (Columbia, Tennessee) he entered the U.S. Military Academy at West Point. Harris graduated in 1931, receiving his commission as a second lieutenant in the U.S. Army Infantry.
Early in his career, Harris was involved in the development of airborne units and doctrine. He also assisted the Canadian Army's airborne efforts. In 1943, during WWII, he was Chief of Staff of the 13th Airborne Division and in 1951, he was Chief of Staff of the XVIII Airborne Corps, Fort Bragg, NC. In 1953, during the Korean War, Harris served as Regimental Commander in the 40th Infantry Division and then became Deputy Chief of Staff, 8th U.S. Army in Korea. His top commands included: Berlin Command, 1955; 11th Airborne Division, 1956; Army Infantry Center and Commandant of the Infantry School, Ft. Benning, GA, 1960; I Corps (Group) Korea, 1961; 7th U.S. Army, Europe, 1962; and Commanding General, U.S. Continental Army Command.(Continued on other side)(Side B)(Continued from other side)
On March 1, 1964, Hugh P. Harris was promoted to Four Star General by President John F. Kennedy. From 1866 to 2012, there were only 218 Four Star Generals in the U.S. Army. General Harris was the 66th officer to be promoted to this rank. Among the officers who held this distinction are Douglas MacArthur, Omar Bradley, George S. Patton, Matthew Ridgeway, and Bruce C. Clark. His highest decorations included: the Distinguished Service Medal, Silver Star, and three Legion of Merit Awards.
General Harris retired in 1965 after a remarkable 34-year career. He became president of The Citadel, the military college of South Carolina, a position he held from 1965 to 1970. He followed Four Star General Mark W. Clark, of WWII Fame, who was president from 1954 to 1965. After retiring from The Citadel in 1970, he lived in Bonneau, SC, until his death on November 3, 1979. General Harris was buried in Arlington National Cemetery. It has been reported that, on at least on occasion after retirement from the Army, General Harris returned to Anderson to visit his birthplace.Anderson Salutes Its Most Distinguished Native.