Harry Balfe (1860-1944) was born in Newburgh, New York. In 1900, he embarked on a mercantile career and joined the firm of
Austin, Nichols & Co. of New York as sales manager, then as manager and vice-president, and then president. When he retired
in 1920, he was chairman of the board. Balfe was a friend of President Theodore Roosevelt, and during the building of the
Panama Canal he made two trips to the canal zone on request of Roosevelt. Balfe was also requested by President William H.
Taft to make another trip to the Panama Canal zone. In the 1930s, he was living in San Joaquin Valley, California, on a large
ranch where he raised prize-winning horses. Balfe was married to May Adams of New York; they had three sons: Harry, Thomas,
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