As the wife of 23rd United States president Benjamin Harrison, she oversaw the late 19th-century renovation of The White House and was a founding member and the first president of the DAR (Daughters of the American Revolution).
She studied at the Oxford Female Institute in the early 1850s, graduating with a music degree and subsequently teaching in Carrollton, Kentucky.
After she died of tuberculosis at the age of sixty, Benjamin Harrison married her niece, Mary Scott Dimmick.
She grew up in Oxford, Ohio, as the daughter of Mary Potts Neal and Presbyterian minister and mathematics professor John Witherspoon Scott . She and Benjamin Harrison welcomed a son, Russell, in 1854, and a daughter, Mamie, in 1858.
Her husband's grandfather, William Henry Harrison, served a less than two-month term as President of the United States (he died in office in 1841).