Harold W. Janeway

Harold White Janeway, of Webster, NH, rowed his Adirondack guide boat into the headwaters of the Ausable Lakes and out of our sight forever on August 20, 2020.

Widely admired for his even-handed temper and skillfully deployed wit, Harold served as Webster’s Moderator for 23 years and Senator for District 7 for two terms.

Born in Glen Cove, NY, on Feb. 3, 1936, Harold and his parents, Edward and Elinor Janeway, moved to a dairy farm in South Londonderry, VT, when Harold was nine. The next-to-youngest of his five siblings, Harold became handy with tractors, tools, haying, and maple sugaring, while he doubled the size of his class at the one-room school, and rose to the top of his class. His high school years were spent at Milton Academy in Milton, Massachusetts. He learned to rock climb at the Milton Quarry, and went on mountaineering trips with the experienced mountaineer and Milton teacher, Adams (“Ad”) Carter. Harold graduated from Yale in 1958 along with a commission as a junior officer in the Naval Reserve and went to Alaska with Ad on an International Geophysical Year expedition to survey a glacier in McKinley Park. Bad weather nearly stranded him on the glacier so that he almost missed his wedding to Elizabeth (“Betsy”) Chanler and inspired much singing of that song from “My Fair Lady” about getting to the church on time. After the wedding, Harold joined his ship as a Lieutenant JG and served two years on a radar picket ship in the North Atlantic. They lived in Newport, RI, home port for Harold’s ship. After his Navy years, Harold joined the investment banking firm of White, Weld and Co. in New York City, where he worked for 18 years. They lived in Bronxville, Mt. Kisco, and Bedford, NY. and had five children: Roger, Nora, William, Priscilla and Augustus. In 1968, the firm was acquired by Merrill Lynch. This freed them from his commute to New York and they moved north to a 1789 farmhouse in Webster, NH. Harold formed his own investment management company in Concord, White Mountain Investment. Harold was Webster’s well-respected Moderator for 23 years. He was deeply involved in many nonprofit conservation organizations and served four years as the NH Senator from District 7, opposing casinos and the Bow power plant scrubber. As the only senator to oppose the Bow scrubber, he was quietly pleased when afterwards it became clear that he was right to have done so. With Senator Janeway’s investment background he was able to help address serious shortcomings and make fundamental changes in the governance and future of the NH Retirement System and participated in a review and subsequent fundamental changes by creating and chairing for 9 years an independent investment committee.

Harold worked for 40 years with The NH Nature Conservancy and the Forest Society, while serving on the Milton Academy board for 17 years. He and Betsy became involved with the NH Civil Liberties Union and Planned Parenthood of Northern New England, and PFLAG-NH (Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays). Harold worked with the NH Charitable Foundation, the Appalachian Mountain Club, the Conservation Law Foundation, the Northern Forest Center, and the initial Trust for NH Lands which later became the Land Conservation Investment Program and LCHIP. He was pleased to provide early support for the Red River Theater.

Each Spring, Harold tapped every maple tree in sight, and set up a temporary sugar house in their garage. He and Betsy made gallons of high-grade maple syrup. They cleared old woods roads through their forest and enjoyed walking and skiing on their trails. They harvested a large vegetable garden, and swam and canoed the Blackwater River. First in town to install solar panels on their barn roof, Harold and Betsy’s commitment to the environment ran deep. They have arranged for their land’s permanent conservation.

Harold leaves behind twenty-three nieces and nephews, many close friends, neighbors, and fellow conservationists, his wife of 63 years, Betsy, his sisters-in-law (Evelyn Chanler, Shiela Swett, Randall Chanler, and Sarah Walker), and his family: Roger (Douglas McGlotten), Nora (John Fergus Tuohy), William (Mary Burgess), Christopher (Catherine Leiser) and Gus (Julia Abbot), and grandchildren (Sophie and Charlie, Banalata and Harry, Riley and Lewis, Theo and Josephine Janeway) and stepgrandchildren (Elliot and Ethan Gaddy). He will always be greatly missed by us all.

Harold asked us to honor his legacy with action, advocacy and support for the many causes he worked so hard to sustain.

Harold is to be buried on his and Betsy’s farm, and an outdoor and masked memorial service was held at 11 A.M. on Saturday, August 29th, at the Janeway farm.