Warner grandson shares memories of Mansion in Farmington

Harley Warner, grandson of Governor Fred M. and Martha Warner, spent time Saturday in a house that holds fond memories from his childhood.

Harley Warner Mary-Jeanne Shore
Governor Warner Mansion interim director Mary-Jeanne Shore talks with Harley Warner, the governor’s grandson.

Warner, now 89, shared those memories with Governor Warner Mansion interim director Mary-Jeanne Shore and several volunteers. His parents were Howard and Clarissa Warner; he’s named for an uncle who died just a year before he was born.

Warner family members donated the property on Grand River to the City of Farmington over 40 years ago. Fred Warner’s father, P. Dean, built the Victorian Italianate mansion in 1867.

Harley Warner Mary-Jeanne Shore
Harley Warner stands in the kitchen where his grandmother Martha once served him and his friends milk and cookies. 

While he grew up in a house on Wilmarth, Harley Warner said he often visited his grandparents and shared many family dinners. He also played pickup ball games in fields around the house and remembers staging plays with friends indoors.

Harley Warner Mary-Jeanne Shore
Harley Warner brought memorabilia that included a photo of his grandfather on horseback and a pocket watch given to the governor while he was Michigan Secretary of State.

Listen to the conversation, which runs just over 8 minutes:

Reported by