North Country newspaperman John D. Harrigan was inducted into the New England Newspaper Hall of Fame last Friday night in Boston. It is a well-deserved honor for one of New Hampshire’s true treasures.
Harrigan has had several careers during his newspaper life. He started out in the Nashua Telegraph darkroom (that ought to indicate his age). He advanced to our New Hampshire Sunday News where his outdoor features, always with his photographs, presented readers with vistas and viewpoints they were otherwise unlikely to see.
He also began his Woods, Water, and Wildlife column, a thoughtful and literate look at and appreciation for nature. It continues as the North Country Notebook in several weekly papers.
Like his late father, Judge Fred Harrigan, he couldn’t stay away from his beloved North Country for long. John returned there, buying the Coos County Democrat in Lancaster and later taking over the News and Sentinel of Colebrook that his father and mother had owned and operated. Daughter Karen now owns it.
Harrigan has known Presidents and captains of industry and has also befriended trappers, tourism workers, and biologists. He has never taken himself too seriously but it has been New Hampshire’s good fortune that he takes newspapering as serious and important to our democracy.