Elmer Edgar Miller, chief clerk in the United States pension agency at Topeka, Kan., is a Hoosier by birth, having been born on March 22, 1863, in Bartholomew county, Indiana. The Miller family was founded in America in early colonial times by William Miller, who emigrated from Ireland about 1740. He was a son of Andrew Miller, who remained in his native land. John Miller, son of William Miller, was born in this country Aug. 22, 1742. He married Mary Wright, born May 14, 1756. They became the parents of three sons, of whom Jonathan, a direct lineal ancestor of Elmer E., was born July 13, 1782, and died on Jan. 6, 1863. Jonathan Miller and his wife, Sarah, were the parents of five sons, one of whom, Charles, was born on March 11, 1810, and died on March 11, 1879. He married Elizabeth Clark, and to the union were born thirteen children, one of whom, John J., is the father of Elmer Edgar Miller. John J. Miller was a native of Knox county, Ohio, where he was born, on June 21, 1842. He was reared on the farm, and when the great Civil war came on he tendered his services in defense of the Union by enlisting as second lieutenant in Company K, and later was promoted to first lieutenant of Company G, One Hundred and Twenty-first Ohio infantry. In the fall campaign of 1862 this regiment entered Kentucky 985 strong, where its most stirring engagement was the battle of Perryville. It remained in Kentucky on guard duty until January, 1863, when it was ordered to Tennessee. In the second day's fighting at the battle of Chattanooga it became fully engaged, and in a charge made to save the only remaining road into Chattanooga, it performed feats of bravery second to no other regiment in the army, and won for itself an enduring name. It met and vanquished the Twenty-second Alabama Confederate infantry, capturing its colors and a majority of the regiment. It lost heavily in this engagement in killed and wounded, however, and fell back with the army behind the intrenchments at Chattanooga, remaining quiet until the battles of Lookout Mountain and Missionary Ridge, in which the One Hundred and Twenty-first Ohio took a prominent part. It then remained in camp until it moved with the army on the Atlanta campaign. The first engagement on this campaign in which the regiment participated was that of Buzzard Roost Gap, in which it drove the enemy from an important position. In the affair at Rome it was complimented by the brigade commander for having been first inside the city. It formed part of the charging column upon Kenesaw Mountain and in that disastrous affair lost 164 killed and wounded. He commanded the company in this assault and received special mention for gallantry in reports to the war department. It was engaged at Peachtree creek, through the siege of Atlanta, and in the final assault at Jonesboro, which ended the Atlanta campaign. Mr. Miller did valiant duty until severely wounded and left for dead on the battlefield at Jonesboro. He was rescued, however, and as soon as he was able to travel he was furloughed home, where, under the tender care of a loving wife, he was restored to health. On March 16, 1862, prior to his enlistment, he was united in marriage with Miss Elmira L. Critchfield, of Bartholomew county, Indiana, where he was engaged in teaching school, and where he and his wife began housekeeping. Soon after the birth of Elmer E. Miller his parents removed to Knox county, Ohio, and it was from there that his father enlisted in the defense of the Stars and Stripes. After the close of the war Mr. Miller continued to reside in Ohio until 1867, when he removed to McDonough county, Illinois, where he resided until his removal to Topeka, Kan., in 1883. He resided in Topeka until his death, on April 7, 1900. During his later years he kept in touch with his old comrades in arms by holding membership in Lincoln Post, No. 1, Grand Army of the Republic, of Topeka. The mother still survives and is passing her declining years with her son in Topeka. There were but two children born to John J. and Elmira L. Miller, Elmer E. and a sister, who died in 1886.
The father followed the vocation of teaching school the greater part of his active career, and with excellent home influences and aid Elmer E. Miller passed his boyhood and youth, securing a first class common and graded school education, which he supplemented with a commercial course in Monmouth Business College. After completing his education, Mr. Miller followed bookkeeping until he came to Topeka, in 1884, and in August of that year he accepted a clerkship in the United states pension agency. Since that time he has continuously served the government in one capacity or another in the Topeka agency. For excellent and meritorious services he has frequently received promotions, and on March 16, 1911, he was made chief clerk.
On Nov. 25, 1885, Mr. Miller married Miss Alla Dolman, daughter of J. W. and Annie (Izard) Dolman, the former of whom was a well known merchant of Topeka. Mr. and Mrs. Miller have four children: Glenn R., born May 27, 1887, and at present assistant chief clerk to the president and general manager of the Missouri, Kansas & Texas railroad, with headquarters at St. Louis, Mo.; Hazel, born Oct. 31, 1889, at home; Evelyn Elmira, born July 16, 1892, graduated in the Topeka High School with the class of 1911, and is now taking a course in a business college; and Elmer Edgar, Jr., born Dec. 14, 1894, is a student in the Topeka High School. Mr. Miller has always supported the principles and policies of the Republican party, but has never been a seeker for political preferment. Fraternally he is a past master of Golden Rule Lodge, No. 90, Free and Accepted Masons of Topeka, and is also a member of the Ancient Order of United Workmen, the Modern Woodmen of America, the Knights and Ladies of Security, the Knights of the Maccabees, and the Degree of Honor. Mr. Miller can trace his ancestry back to the original American settler and comes of stanch Revolutionary stock on both the paternal and maternal sides.Pages 1226-1228 from volume III, part 2 of Kansas: a cyclopedia of state history, embracing events, institutions, industries, counties, cities, towns, prominent persons, etc. ... / with a supplementary volume devoted to selected personal history and reminiscence. Standard Pub. Co. Chicago : 1912. 3 v. in 4. : front., ill., ports.; 28 cm. Vols. I-II edited by Frank W. Blackmar. Transcribed December 2002 by Carolyn Ward. This volume is identified at the Kansas State Historical Society as microfilm LM195. It is a two-part volume 3.
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