Greenberry Horras Harrison, early legislator, journalist, and boatman, was born in 1811, probably in Warren County, Tennessee. He was the son of Joseph D. Harrison and Rachel (Lockhart) Harrison and moved with his family to Alabama about 1817. Harrison married Esther W. Gillespie on July 24, 1831, in Blount County, Alabama. They had two sons, but the couple formally separated in 1835. By 1839 Harrison had arrived in Texas, where he fought in the Cherokee War in July. In late 1840 he was a partner in a land venture to promote a new town called Alabama on the Trinity River. While representing Houston County in the House of the Fifth Congress, he married Mrs. Ann C. McKinstry, widow of George B. McKinstry, on January 14, 1841, in Austin. The Harrisons bought the Austin home of Anson Jones. In November 1841 he purchased the Texas Sentinel and divided the periodical into the Austin Daily Texian and Weekly Texian (see NATIONAL VINDICATOR). In 1842 the Harrisons moved to Washington-on-the-Brazos, where he published the Texian and Brazos Farmer (a merger of the Weekly Texian and Brazos Farmer).
By the early 1850s he was engaged in the river boat business. As owner and commander of the Nick Hill, Harrison carried cotton, wood, and other freight in that vessel, which was the first boat to travel down the Brazos River to the port of Galveston. It was wrecked by a storm in Galveston Bay in September 1854. By the spring of 1856, Harrison had left Texas for California. His wife remained in Texas. Most likely he was attracted to opportunities afforded by the gold rush. No information is available regarding his death.