About August Miller

This is taken from the History of Otter Tail County, Minnesota, by John W. Mason (ed.) 1916, published by B. F. Bowen & Co., pages 899-900. Sent by Ruth Miller Collings.

August Miller was born on April 29, 1853, in Germany and is the son of Powell and Elizabeth (Schmitkens) Miller, both natives of Germany. Powell Miller operated and owned a grist-mill in Germany, and followed the vocation of miller until his death in that country. Two of his brothers served in the German army, and were killed in service during the war of 1864.

August Miller immigrated to America in 1870, and was first located in Cincinnati, Ohio, but soon removed to Kentucky, where he was occupied as stage driver and at various kinds of labor, for a period of three years, later removing to Illinois, where he was employed for three years as a farmhand.

He then removed to Mower county, Minnesota, where he returned to his former trade of miller, which he had learned while a resident of Germany. After following this vocation for some time, he removed to Parkdale, Otter Tail County, Minnesota, and operated a mill there for one year. [Parkdale is 4 miles southeast of Fergus Falls.]

In 1880, one year following the arrival in Otter Tail County, he purchased a small water mill located on the property which he now owns in Eagle Lake township. This mill he fully equipped and operated successfully until 1894, at which time it was destroyed by fire. The stream which ran the mill is an outlet of Eagle Lake.

August Miller purchased a small farm at the same time he purchased the mill, and has added to the original place, until he now owns three hundred and eighty acres of well improved land. Owing to his realty investments he was fully equipped to enter the agricultural field, and thus, undaunted by the destruction of his mill, he became a breeder of Shorthorn cattle, and has one of the finest herds ever raised in the county. In 1912 he retired from active farming and stock raising, but still resides on the place, of which he has sold a minor portion.

August Miller was united in marriage to Emma Neller, a native of Mower county, Minnesota, and to them have been born four children: Edward, Amelia, Nellie and Robert, all graduates of the high school in Fergus Falls. Edward and Robert are also graduates of the Columbus Business College located at Columbus, Ohio, and Edward is now a professor in a business college in San Francisco, California, while Robert is the head salesman for a furniture concern in Springfield, Ohio. Amelia and Nellie were engaged for some years in the capacity of school teachers.

August Miller has always been actively engaged in the furtherance of all questions pertaining to the betterment of the community and has served his fellow citizens as school director, treasurer, and chairman of the board of supervisors. He is a member of the Free and Accepted Masons.

See also: Edward W. Miller's memory piece on his family, written in 1960.

See also: Otter Tail County History
(There is a lot of interesting area history at this link, including flour milling links.)

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August Miller