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Greene County, Ohio
History & Genealogy


History of Greene County, Ohio,
its people, industries & institutions
by Hon. M. A. Broadstone, Editor in Chief -
Vol. I. & II.
Publ. B. F. Bowen & Company, Inc.,
 Indianapolis, Ind.


WILLIAM MAXWELL was a native of New Jersey.  It is quite possible that he for a short time lived in Kentucky before he came across to Cincinnati.  In that city, which was then only a cluster of a few log huts, he printed the first newspaper ever published in the Northwest Territory.  Maxwell succeeded Abner Dunn as the second postmaster at Cincinnati.  In 1799 he with his family left the little village of Cincinnati and came north, settling on what is now known as the Maxwell farm in Beavercreek township, this county.  He was elected a member of the House of Representatives of the First General Assembly of Ohio, which met at Chillicothe, March 1, 1803, and he favored the law erecting Greene county.  By an act of the Legislature he was appointed one of the first three associate judges of the county on April 6, 1803.  He resigned his office of associate judges of the county on April 6, 1803.  He resigned his office of associate judge on Dec. 7, 1803, was chosen sheriff of Greene county and served until 1807.  He took an active interest in organizing the state militia and held the rank of major in 1805.  On his farm in Beavercreek township, he devoted himself chiefly to cattle raising.  His death occurred in 1809 and his grave is located on the old Maxwell farm, about one and one-half miles southeast of Alpha.
(Source:  History of Greene County, Ohio, its people, industries & institutions by Hon. M. A. Broadstone, Editor in Chief - Vol. I.- Publ. 1918 by B. F. Bowen & Company, Inc., Indianapolis, Ind.)

  ALBERT McHENRY MILLER.     Albert McHenry Miller, veteran of the Civil War and retired farmer and carpenter, a former justice of the peace in and for his home township, who for many years has made his home in the village of Jamestown, is a native son of Greene county, born on a farm in New Jasper township on Aug. 1, 1841, son of George and Caroline (Wilson) Miller, the former of whom was a native of the old Keystone state and the latter of the Blue Grass state, born in the vicinity of Mammoth Cave, who were married in this county and here spent their last days.
     George Miller was twice married and was the father of eighteen children.  He came from Pennsylvania to Ohio during the days of his young manhood and settled in Greene county, following here his trade as a brick-mason until presently he bought a far of one hundred acres on the Jamestown and Xenia pike in New Jasper township, paying for the same five dollars an acre, and there established his home.  His first wife was a Bromagem, a member of one of the pioneer families of the Cedarville neighborhood, who bore him six children, three of whom grew to maturity and one of whom, Simon Benton Milller, is still living, now a resident of Celina, Auglaize county, and is past ninety years of age; the others having been Dr. Milton Miller and Rebecca, the latter of whom married one of the Cedarville Townleys.  Following the death of the mother of these children George Miller married Caroline Wilson, a member of one of the pioneer families that had come up here from Kentucky, and to that union were born twelve children, seven sons and five daughters, of whom the following grew to maturity:  Perry W., who spent his last days in Illinois; Harney Anslie now deceased, who was a veteran of the Civil War, his service having been rendered in the Seventy-fourth Ohio, commanded by Col. Granville Moody; George C., deceased; John Thomas also a soldier of the Union, who went out as a member of the First Regiment, Ohio Volunteer Infantry, commanded by one of the "Fighting" McCooks, and died in service; Albert McHenry, the immediate subject of this biographical sketch; James D., who also enlisted his services in behalf of the Union during the Civil War, went to the front with the First Ohio and was killed during the battle of Missionary Ridge; William Edwin, a retired farmer of this county, now living at Jamestown; Mrs. Mattie M. Townsley, now living in Iowa; Mrs. Miranda Caroline Hite and Mrs. Amanda Evaline Gordon, twins the former of whom is now living at Bellefontaine and the latter in the vicinity of Jamestown, and MRs. Sarah Elizabeth Harrison who died in 1914.  Major-Gen. John Harney, of Civil War fame was an uncle of these children.
     Albert McHenry Miller grew to manhood on the home farm in New Jasper township, receiving his schooling in the schools of that neighborhood and was living on the farm when the Civil War broke out.  On Aug. 15, 1862, he enlisted his services in behalf of the Union and went to the front as a member of Company D, One Hundred and Tenth Regiment, Ohio Volunteer Infantry, Gen. J. Warren Keifer, of Springfield, commanding.  After some service in the Army of the Potomac in Virginia, Mr. Miller was assigned to detached service as a headquarters guard and in that capacity continued his service until mustered out after the close of the war, his final discharge being received in May, 1865.  During this service Mr. Miller participated in some most interesting experiences, his headquarters activities bringing him in close touch with some of the great leaders of the war, and he was on duty at Washington at the time of the assassination of President Lincoln.  He stood guard at General Grant's headquarters in the Wilderness and on two occasions was guard over Belle Boyd, the famous Confederate spy, who was captured and brought into General Milroy's camp, he at that time being guard at Milroy's headquarters.  He also served in like capacity under Gen. Lew Wallace, under General French, of the Third Corps, Army of the Potomac; under Gen. H. C. Wright and under Gen. J. B. Rickets, the latter of whom it was his duty to awaken at the opening of the battle of Cedar Creek.  He followed General Rickets out onto the pike, where the general was seriously wounded and he carried his officer back to the hospital.  Mr. Miller was present when gallant "Phil" Sheridan rode up on his famous black charger during the battle of Cedar Creek and heard Sheridan say after General Wright had ordered a withdrawal:  "Place the Eighth Corps on the left; the Nineteenth on the right, and the old slow Sixth in the center and I'll whip hell out of them before sundown."  During the battle of the Wilderness Mr. Miller was within ten feet of Gen. John Sedgwick of the Sixth Corps, when the latter was slain.  Mr. Miller was not of voting age at the time of the first Lincoln campaign, but he voted for Lincoln in 1864, his first Presidential vote, and at the same time voted for Brough for governor of Ohio, the latter receiving a majority in excess of one hundred thousand.  Mr. Miller's experience as a soldier of the Union during the Civil War and his thoughtful consideration of the history of that period, together with his comprehensive knowledge of the general history of the country, have given him exceptional opportunities for service as a member of the local post of the Grand Army of the Republic and he long has held the post of patriotic instructor in that organization, of which he also is past commander and for many years one of the most active members.
     Upon the completion of his military service Mr. Miller returned home and resumed his labors on the farm, but his health presently began to fail and he sold his farming interests and began working as a carpenter, a trade in which he had been trained before going to war.  After his marriage in the fall of 1872 he established his home in the village of Jamestown, where he continued to follow his vocation as a builder until his retirement.  Mr. Miller is a Republican and for years served as justice of the peace at Jamestown, but in 1917 resigned that office.  By religious persuasion he is a member of the Missionary Baptist church.
     On Sept. 5, 1872, Albert McHenry Miller was united in marriage to Laura M. Shrack, of this county, who died at her home in Jamestown on Feb. 5, 1902.  To that union were born three children, two sons and one daughter, the latter of whom, Jessie S., wife of the Rev. L. B. Albert, of Muskegon, Michigan, has a life certificate as a teacher and is principal of one of the schools at Muskegon.  Her husband also is a teacher.  Mr. James Albert Miller, Mr. Miller's youngest son, born on July 1, 1874, died on Apr. 1, 1917, and twenty days later his bother, Anslie Miller, met his death in a railway accident at Jamestown.  Anslie Miller, born on May 13, 1873, married Elizabeth Alice Saunders, of Jamestown, and was the father of one son, James Albert.  His widow and son are still making their home at Jamestown.
Source: History of Greene County, Ohio, Vol. II - publ. by  B. F. Bowen & Company, Inc., Indianapolis, Ind.,
1918 - Page 759
  GEORGE G. MILLER.    George Grant Miller, a Beavercreek township farmer and dairyman and proprietor of a farm of ninety-two acres on rural mail route No. 4 out of Osborn, was born in this county, Dec. 2, 1868, son of Reuben and Mary Ann (Tobias) Miller, both of whom also were born in this county, members of pioneer families.  Reuben Miller was born on Apr. 2, 1836, and his wife was born in 1840.  They were married in 1867 and to them were born four sons, of whom the subject of this sketch was the first-born, the others being William, deceased; Edward, now a resident of Dayton, and Lewis, who is living at Fairfield.
     Reared on the home farm, George C. Miller received his schooling in the district school in the vicinity of the farm on which he is now living, and early began practical farming, continuing thus engaged after his marriage in 1899.  Recently he bought the farm of ninety-two acres on which he is
now living and is steadily improving the same, with a view to giving particular attention to the raising of big-type Poland China hogs.  Mr. Miller is a Republican. 
     On Apr. 2, 1899, George G. Miller was united in marriage to Edith Williamson, who also was born in this county, daughter of Edward J. and Martha (Roher) Williamson, of Beavercreek township, who were the parents of six children, those besides Mrs. Miller being Bertha, deceased; George, who is living at Shoups Station; Chester, of Dayton; Frank, of Chicago, and one deceased.
Source: History of Greene County, Ohio, Vol. II - publ. by  B. F. Bowen & Company, Inc., Indianapolis, Ind.,
1918 - Page 813

Old Harbein Homestead, later occupied by
John M. Miller
and family
HON. JOHN M. MILLER.    Not once but several times in this work the reader will have noticed references to the high character of the work done in the old Beaver grade school in Beavercreek township in the days of a past generation when that school, which was giving a course akin to that of the present high school, had a reputation of more than local note.  In those days twenty dollars a month was regarded as fair pay for the school teacher, but John M. Miller, during the time he had charge of the Beaver grade school, was paid one hundred dollars a month, a testimony to his fitness for the position that cannot be misunderstood.  In that day the Beaver grade school ranked higher than the seminary at Xenia and the academies at Dayton and young men from both of these towns gladly placed themselves under the tutelage of Mr. Miller, who taught surveying in addition to the ordinary branches of learning that constituted the course in the old grade school.  At the time of his death Mr. Miller was representing this district in the Legislature.
     Hon. John M. Miller was born in Franklin county, Pennsylvania, in 1830, and was ten years of age when he came to Ohio with his parents, Robert and Nancy (Minnich) Miller the family locating in this county in 1840.  Five years later the Miller family moved to Indiana, but seven years later, in 1852, John M. Miller returned to Greene county and in that same year entered Miami University, from which institution he was graduated in 1856.  He then took up the study of law in Xenia and in 1859 was admitted to the bar.  In 1862 he was elected to represent this legislative district in the General Assembly of the state of Ohio and was serving in that capacity when he died on Jan. 9, 1863, a contemporary account stating that the arduous labors of his legislative service undoubtedly hastened his death.  Mr. Miller left a widow and two children, a son, Charles Edward, who died at the age of twenty-one years, and a daughter, Luella, who is still living with her mother in the old Harbein home at Alpha.  Mrs. Miller was born at Alpha, Hetty M. Harbein, daughter of John and Hetty (Herr) Harbein, further mention of whom is made elsewhere in this volume, John Harbein having been regarded in his day as perhaps the wealthiest man in Greene county.  The Harbein place at Alpha, now occupied by Mrs. Miller and her daughter, is perhaps richer in historic associations than any single spot connected with the development of Greene county, for on that spot stood the little log cabin of Owen Davis in which was held the meeting at which formal organization of Greene county was effected in 1803 and in which the first court held in Greene county performed its functions. 
     An older chronicle refers to John M. Miller as having been essentially a self-made man, and continues the narrative thus:  "His father being poor, he was obliged to devote his minor years to helping on the home farm - inclement weather only being called his own.  On such days he toiled with the axe, maul and mattock - cutting cordwood, splitting rails and clearing ground - to earn means to purchase books and pay for tuition when he could go to school.  His evenings were all spent in study (his page being lighted from scraps of burning bark), and by diligent application he soon got to master the elementary branches and was able to teach a common school.  By alternate teaching and rough manual labor he husbanded enough to commence a college course.  It was yet, however, to be much interrupted and himself to be reduced to many straits before it was completed - losing at one time a year and a half, and in all, two years of a four-years course.  The question is, in the reader's mind, "Did he graduate?'  Yes!  'How did he rank?'  Number one!  'What! in two years of study?'  Exactly so - and this not consecutive, but made up, in truth, of mere fragments of time.  Moreover, he added both German and French to the usual college course.  And here we may safely rest the claims of Mr. M. to genius and perseverance; for we doubt if any other institution in the United States has recorded such an achievement.  We once read of one who performed such a feat, but who won, at the same time the honors of the martyr and the victor.
     "Mr. M. was very tall and rather slender, but he was as straight as an arrow.  His head was very well shaped.  His hair was dark and worn rather long his beard was full, but thin; and his features were regular, but slightly prominent.  His manners were very inviting, his disposition genial, and his friendship sincere and cordial.  As a representative he was faithful to his trust - always at his post and always attentive to what was passing before him.  He was a very good speaker and reasoned well, and with careful culture would have soon become a leading man in the state."
Source: History of Greene County, Ohio, Vol. II - publ. by  B. F. Bowen & Company, Inc., Indianapolis, Ind.,
1918 - Page 364


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