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Past and Present of Livingston County
Volume 2. Biographies
by Major A. J. Roof. 1913
M. W. Miller, who is living in retirement after having spent upwards of forty-three years as a resident of Livingston county, was born seven miles south of Canton, Ohio, December 26, 1835. He is a son of Samuel and Rachel Miller, the former a weaver by trade, who passed away in the spring of 1860, at the age of sixty-two. He is buried in Stark county, near Sparta, while his wife, who passed away in 1870, rests in a graveyard near Mogadore, Ohio. The family is of old German origin but its representatives have been in America for over one hundred and fifty years.
M. W. Miller acquired his primary education in the district schools and completed his studies in the Mount Union College near Alliance. He laid aside his books at the age of nineteen and afterward taught for many years in the village and country schools, becoming well known as a force in educational circles in his district. He came to Missouri in 1870 and worked as a clerk in Alpha, after which he started in business for himself, conducting a mercantile enterprise for two years. After he came to Chula he built a store and was successful for some time as a general merchant, trading his enterprise after three years for a farm in Livingston county, which he developed and improved successfully. This he also sold after five years and again moved into Chula, accepting the positions of cashier and bookkeeper for the Exchange Bank. After four years he sold out his interests in that institution and assisted in organizing the Farmers & Merchants Bank, of which he became bookkeeper and assistant cashier, serving in that capacity until his retirement in 1906. His work during the period of his activity was of that progressive and constructive kind which affects general business interests and it had an important influence upon the development of the community. Mr. Miller's industry and close application have been rewarded by a substantial competence, which enables him to spend his later life in rest and comfort.
Near Sandyille, Ohio, on April 3, 1862, Mr. Miller was united in marriage to Miss Sarah A. Swank, a daughter of Phillip and Catherine Swank, who came to Livingston county in 1866. Both have passed away and are buried in the Edgewood cemetery. Mr. and Mrs. Miller had six children: Clement S., a barber at Sprague, Washington; Olive C., who became the wife of Taylor Fossett, of St. Joseph, Missouri; Elsie L., who married D. A. Smith, of South Omaha; Nettie R., who married Joseph Johnston, of Shafter, Missouri; Burt M., a barber in Kansas City; and Charles P., who died in infancy and is buried in Sandyville.
Mr. Miller is a member of the Methodist church and is one of its trustees. Politically he is affiliated with the republican party and has served as assessor in Ohio and in Chillicothe, Missouri. He also was employed for three years in the county clerk's office at Chillicothe, doing effective work under William H. Gaunt. He is an honored veteran of the Civil war, having served in that conflict as a member of the One Hundred and Sixty-second Ohio regiment, and in all the relations of his life is loyal, progressive and straightforward, his worth as a man and as a citizen being widely acknowledged.