In the house at 223 N. Front Street lived two 19th Century Pennsylvania Governors, William Bigler (1852-1855) and James Pollock (1855-1858). Also here resided U.S. Army Major Marcus Reno, the controversial survivor of the Battle of Little Big Horn, site of "Custer's Last Stand." Jacob Haldeman, early Harrisburg industrialist and founder of the Borough of New Cumberland, built the Federal-styled house circa 1841-1845 for his daughter and son-in-law, Robert Ross, who has risen through the ranks in the 1830's and 40's of the newly established Dauphin Deposit Bank. For a period in the 1850's the Rosses lived in New Cumberland and rented 223 N. Front Street to the Commonwealth for the Governors' home. the Ross's daughter, Mary Hanna, married Marcus Reno at Pine Street Presbyterian Church in 1863, and they in turn moved into the house. Reno served as Brigadier General during the Civil War. Returning to his rank as Major, Reno took part in an attack on the Sioux and Cheyenne Native Americans in Montana, June 25-27, 1876, at which Lt. Colonel George A. Custer and almost 60 percent of the 7th Cavalry were massacred. Although Reno was the senior surviving officer and was credited with saving the remainder of the Cavalry in the battle, he was accused of dereliction of duty and cowardice. Harrisburg lawyer Lyman Gilbert represented Reno at the inquiry held in Chicago in 1879. Although Reno was cleared of the charges, he was later tried on an unrelated charge of behavior unbecoming an officer and was court-martialed. In 1967, however, the case was reopened and his name cleared. After his wife, Mary Hanna, died in 1874, Reno moved to Washington D.C. The house later fell into the hands of son R. Ross Reno and his wife Ittie K. Reno. They sold the property in 1889, the year of Marcus Reno's death.
Major Marcus Albert Reno
1889 City Atlas showing Reno ownership of 223 N. Front Street (center).