A. L. McMILLAN has for thirty years or more been actively identified with news publishing and editing in Kansas, and at the same time has taken a prominent part in public and business affairs. He is the type of man who enjoys the pleasures of experience as well as those of achievement, has entered intimately into the life and affairs around him, and is one of the keenest observers and judges of men and conditions in the state. For several years he has been proprietor and editor of the Macksville Enterprise and is an old settler in Stafford County.
He was born in Harrison County, Ohio, January 11, 1859. His great-grandfather, Jonathan McMilIan, came from Ireland and was a colonial settler in Pennsylvania. He landed, with all the property he possessed, at Philadelphia and shortly afterward a storm arose and swept all his goods into the sea. Daniel McMillan, grandfather of the Macksville editor, was born in Pennsylvania in 1789. After reaching manhood he rode on horseback from Pennsylvania to Ohio and took up a tract of new land in Harrison County. He cleared a farm, and was one of the very successful men in that county, and he left a farm to each of his sons. He married in Harrison County, Miss Trumbo, and died there in 1859.
Johnson McMillan, father of A. L., was a Kansas pioneer. He was born in Harrison County, Ohio, August 5, 1830, grew up and married there, was a farmer, and in 1872 he moved to DeKalb County, Missouri, and cleared up a farm in that section of Northwest Missouri. In 1876 he moved further west to Reno County, Kansas, and a year later homesteaded a quarter section and also took a timber claim in Stafford County. That land and farm provided him his business activities the rest of his life. He died in a hospital at Topeka in February, 1914. He was a republican and was a veteran Union soldier.
Johnson McMillan married Martha J. McCollam, born in Harrison County, Ohio, in 1831 and died on the homestead farm in Kansas in 1909. They had a family of twelve children: W. F. McMillan, who was a railroad man and died at the age of fifty-one at Scio, Ohio; George W., who during his early career served six years as chief of police at Conneaut, Ohio, came to Kansas in 1877 and homesteaded in Stafford County, lived on his claim fifteen years, and after living again in Ohio for several years returned to his claim in Stafford County in 1907 and died there in 1914; James G., who died in Harrison County, Ohio, at the age of fifty-four; Heber B., who died on his farm near Stafford at the age of fifty; A. L. McMillan; Johnson T., a retired farmer at Stafford; Elmer, a barber at Stafford; Mary Viola, wife of S. A. Amend, a farmer near Stafford; William M., a retired farmer at Stafford; Martha J., wife of W. M. Buckle, who lives on the old homestead of her father; Henry F., a farmer in Douglas Township of Stafford County; and Rutherford Hayes, who owns an 800-acre ranch and is now living retired at Stafford. As this brief record indicates the family have all made creditable records in life.
A. L. McMillan was fourteen years old when his parents moved to Missouri, and was eighteen when he came to Kansas. He gained his education in DeKalb County, Missouri, and up to the age of twenty-three helped his father on the homestead. He had an ambition to become a printer and learned that art in the office of the Sterling Gazette, where he worked steadily a year and a half. When the proprietor of the Gazette, E. B. Cowgill, became sugar inspector for the State of Kansas Mr. McMillan was given the responsibilities of editor and manager of the Gazette and held that post until 1889. In that year he removed to Lyons, Kansas, and was elected register of deeds of Rice County, being re-elected in 1891 and serving four years. He also held the office of deputy register of deeds four years, and in the meantime was engaged in the real estate business in Lyons until 1900, when he sold his interests there and returned to Stafford. He was connected with the Stafford County Republican for a year and then bought and edited that paper for three years. In 1903 he was appointed postmaster of Stafford, and filled that office until the summer of 1907, which he spent with his family in Colorado, and on returning to Stafford he managed the Courier three years, and then resumed the real estate business until 1914. Since that year his home has been in Macksville, where he bought the Macksville Enterprise.
The Macksville Enterprise is the continuation of a paper established in 1900, but its independent existence dates from about 1904. It is independent in politics and has a circulation in Stafford, Pawnee, Edwards, and Pratt counties. Mr. McMillan owns the building, the well equipped plant, situated on Main Street, and among other business affairs is secretary of the Macksville Telephone Company. He is an independent voter, is a former member of the Knights of Pythias and a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church.
July 24, 1902, at Stafford, he married Miss Bertha Shaw, daughter of William and Josephine (Dennison) Shaw, both now deceased. Her father was a railroad car inspector and was accidentally killed while on duty. Mr. and Mrs. McMillan have two daughters, Maxine Helen, born May 9, 1903, now a junior in the Macksville High School; and Josephine Virginia, born November 26, 1908, a pupil in the Macksville schools.
Transcribed from A Standard History of Kansas and Kansans, written and compiled by William E. Connelley, Secretary of the Kansas State Historical Society, Topeka. [Revised ed.] Chicago: Lewis Publishing Co., 1919, c1918. 5 v. (xlviii, 2530 p.,  leaves of plates): ill., maps (some fold.), ports.; 27 cm.
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