Harry Austin White was born in Bury, in Lancashire, in 1883, the son of David and Mary White (nee Birch). By 1901, the family were living in Wolverhampton, and Harry appears at 141 Park Street together with his parents, brother James and sister Lizzie. He married Ethel Marian Haynes in 1906, they had a daughter (Florence Jessie) in 1909, and had moved to London by 1911, when they were at 4 Sidney Road, West Ham. According to the 1911 census, he was a mineral water maker, and he later became a Director of Midland Counties Dairy Co. Ltd in Wolverhampton.
During the First World War he joined the Flying Corps as a motor driver, stationed in Mesopotamia. By 1932, he was elected to Wolverhampton Council as a Conservative, becoming Mayor in 1939. He lost his seat in 1945. He died in 1947