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Published: Monday, 4/21/2014

HARRY C. ARCHER, 1919-2014

Printing franchisee loved boating

BY JIM SIELICKI
BLADE STAFF WRITER

Harry C. Archer, a former sales manager for Champion Spark Plug Co. and a franchise holder for a printing firm, who had a lifelong interest in boating and ships, died April 8 in The Manor at Perrysburg, where he had lived for nearly four years. He was 95.

The cause of death was complications from old age, his daughter, Katharine H. Jarosz, said.

Mr. Archer was a founding member of the Western Lake Erie Historical Society.

He was born in Long Beach, Calif., on Jan. 31, 1919, to Harry and Christian Archer.

His father, who was born in Scotland, was an engineer who took his family on projects in Chile, South Africa, and Puerto Rico. The younger Archer spent most of his high school years in Scotland.

When the family returned to the United States for what was to be Harry Archer’s last year in high school in North Fork, Va., school officials told him he didn’t have the required courses to graduate. His education was extended an additional year, Mrs. Jarosz said.

“That really irked him because he didn’t have civics and government,” Mrs. Jarosz said

After graduation from Virginia Tech in 1940, he began working for Grumman Aircraft, now Northrop Grumman Corp., moving to Long Island, N.Y.

It was on Long Island where a boarding house roommate introduced him to his sister, Marjorie G. Paulsrud, who was visiting from St. Paul. He married her on Oct. 7, 1941. She died on June 2, 2003.

His Grumman job took the family to Florida, where he also worked as a water ski instructor. In 1953, Champion hired him to handle sales of aviation spark plugs.

The family moved to Perrysburg in 1959 when the Toledo manufacturer promoted Mr. Archer to aviation sales manager.

He was a hobby draftsman. After retiring from Champion in the early 1980s, he opened a Quickprint franchise in Perrysburg. It gave him access to printers that could reproduce drawings and blueprints of ships he drew, his daughter said.

“He wanted to be able to print out these ship plans and he figured he could do that through Quickprint,” she said. “He wanted to keep busy when he retired, and he figured he could tie the two together.”

Mr. and Mrs. Archer held a strong interest in the Great Lakes. Mrs. Archer would write the history of ships and he would draw ship plans that were used by model-makers.

“He’d sell the plans to museums,” his daughter added.

He belonged to an organization of Great Lakes ship captains, which rewarded him with a trip on a freighter to Lake Superior.

He was a member of the Perrysburg Boat Club, Maumee River Yacht Club, and the local chapter of the U.S. Power Squadron. He was a 32nd degree Mason with Scottish Rite Phoenix Lodge.

Mr. Archer is survived by sons Harry C. and David J. Archer; daughter Katharine H. Jarosz; five grandchildren; seven great-grandchildren, and a great-great-granddaughter.

A memorial service is planned in mid-July. Witzler-Shank Funeral Home, Perrysburg, handled the arrangements.

Tributes are suggested to the Perrysburg Rotary Foundation.

Contact: Jim Sielicki at: 419-724-6050 or jsielicki@theblade.com



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