Harriet Harley

Mrs. Harriet M. Harley of 2217 Meadowbrook Road, Davenport will celebrate her 104th birthday July 27th. Friends and family members will be celebrating with her.

Mrs. Harley remains active making quilts, reading, and gardening. Her newest hobby is doing a bit of genealogy and writing her life story. She thinks that, despite the challenges, in many ways she has lived during the best of times. Here is some of her story.

Harriet Margaret Tinnes was born near Talleyrand. She grew up on a farm there working hard, helping nurse family through scarlet fever, and weathering the depression. She played the piano and taught Sunday school at St. Paul’s Evangelical Church and led 4-H sewing classes. She also served as editor of the Keota High School newspaper. Harriet graduated in the class of 1931.

After earning her teaching certificate at Parsons College, she taught eight grades in a one room schoolhouse heated by a pot bellied stove. In 1936, she married Charles Wilton Harley of West Chester. They moved to Davenport where they owned and operated a confectionery called the Karmel Korn Shop. When World War II broke out, all the young men in her family joined the military. She became a Navy wife and traveled the country with her aviator husband and two small daughters. After the war, returning to Davenport, the couple owned and operated East Locust Hardware for 37 years. And, she served as First Lady of the Iowa Retail Hardware Association.

She had two daughters: Dr. Sandra Harley Carey (BGEN J. Ronald Carey), Canyon Lake, Texas and Linda Leanne Harley; two granddaughters; Bekkie Huffman (Kevin Huffman), Bettendorf and Dr. Debbie Kirchberg (Dr. Tim Kirchberg), Columbus, Wisconsin; and six great-grandchildren: Kisha, Kamryn, and Kelsey Huffman of Bettendorf and Turner, Tanner, and Trace Kirchberg of Columbus, Wisconsin.