Local History Collections

Collection ID: LH-170
Location: LH-170

(Description ID: 595488)

Rutherford B. Hayes Presidential Library & Museums

Harkness J. Miller


Biographical Sketch
Scope and Content

The Harkness J. Miller collection was donated to the Rutherford B. Hayes Presidential Center by Mrs. Isabella Miller in November, 1964

Biographical Sketch
Harkness John Miller was born November 11, 1877.  Harkness Miller was educated in Clyde, Ohio schools, and spent most of his life there. In April, 1898, Miller volunteered to serve in the Spanish-American War.  He enlisted as a musician in Company I, 16th Ohio National Guard in Clyde.  Harkness would later become a volunteer in the 6th Ohio Infantry.

In August 1898, Miller was transferred to the Hospital Corps. He later served in the 7th Cavalry in Havana, Cuba.  Harkness received a disability discharge from the military in January 1899. In 1903, Miller graduated from the Sandusky Business College, and he spent his life in various businesses.  During Harkness Miller’s life, he devoted much time to music of which he was very fond.  Harkness Miller organized and directed bands, orchestras, choirs and choruses in Clyde, Huron and several of other Ohio towns. He was also a member of several Masonic bodies: Monticello Lodge No. 244, F. & A. M.; Clyde Chapter No. 90, R. A. M.; Bellevue Council No. 82, R. & S. M.; Fremont Commander No.56, Knights Templar; and Clyde Chapter No.73, Order of the Eastern Star.  Miller was also a member of the Sandusky County Historical Society. June 18, 1904, Harkness Miller married Freada E. Meyers of Huron, Ohio.  They had a mutual interest in music and flowers Freada Miller died August 12, 1944. Miller later married Isabella B. Shepard.  Miller died May 26, 1964.           

Harkness J. Miller was the son of Henry W. Miller. He was born in Clyde, Ohio on June 2, 1838 to one of the prominent pioneering families of Sandusky County Ohio.  Henry was a Civil War veteran, who served with the 72nd Ohio Volunteer Infantry.  He was captured at the Battle of Guntown and imprisoned at Andersonville. Following the war, Miller married Maria L. Deyo on September 22, 1868.  Miller died June 28, 1933 at the age of 95.

Henry Miller was the son of Lyman F. Miller born November 22, 1813 in Geneva, New York. When Lyman was an infant, his family moved to Ohio, becoming one the first families to settle in Green Creek Township, Sandusky County, Ohio. He married Mellissa E. Harkness in 1836.  Lyman Miller died in Sandusky County in February, 1878.                    

Scope and Content
The Harkness J. Miller Collection includes materials dating from 1815 to 1964.  The collection includes Miller family genealogical materials; deeds and the will of Samuel Pogue; news clippings regarding veteran and family reunions; church programs; historical interests; obituaries; and marriages. There are photographs of Harkness Miller, Miller family members, and bands, church choirs and musical groups of which Miller was a member.  There are also ribbons and badges of veteran, fraternal, and political organizations. In 2008, Henry Miller’s handwritten account of his Civil War service and imprisonment at Andersonville was added.  This account was published in Commemorative and Biographical Record of Sandusky and Ottawa Counties, Ohio by J.H. Beers and Co., 1896.  There are also two books in this collection: McGuffey’s fourth grade reader and another titled Hymns and Spiritual Songs.    

Ac. 1627, 5646

Approx. 300 Items

  1. Patriotic Clippings and Programs
  2. Fraternal Organizations
  3. Miller Family Articles, Obituaries and documents
  4. Spanish American War Articles, Programs, etc
  5. Early Area Band Miscellany
  6. Musical and other Programs and Broadsides
  7. Church Programs and Bulletins
  8. Toledo Blade “Pictorial,” 1949
  9. Photographs

Teachers of Clyde, Ohio, Public School

Early group photograph, outdoor, unidentified

Band and musicians

G.A.R. Band, Huron, Ohio, May, 1900

Modern Woodman Band of Fremont, Ohio at National Convention, St. Louis, Missouri

Group photograph, unidentified. Kull Studio, Wauseon, Ohio.

Group photograph at Pike’s Peak, Colorado, Aug. 6, 1911.

Company I, 6th Ohio Volunteer Infantry, taken at Chickamauga Park, Georgia, summer of 1898.

Old Timers’ Band Reunion, Clyde, 1939 (2).

Harkness J. Miller, Spanish American War, July 1898.

Military Band, unidentified, Clyde, Ohio

Clyde Episcopal Church Choir, Harkness Miller director, 1907.

Reunion of Methodist Episcopal Choir, Clyde, Ohio, July 23, 1935.

Tin type of Harkness Miller.

Cabinet card photograph of Harkness Miller (aged 17 years) as musician of Company I, 6th O.V.I., July 1898.

Group picture of 6th O.V. I. Bugle Corps, Chickamauga, Georgia, July 1898. (Harkness Miller, fourth from the right).

Black and white print of Henry J. Miller (Harkness’s father and Civil War veteran, n.d.)

Group photograph of four Civil War veterans, June 2, 1930 (Henry Miller first on right).

Photograph of Clyde, Ohio band

Arion Quartette, 1897.

The Old Timers’ Band reunion, Clyde, Ohio,1939. (2) (photographs marked 20, 21, 22 transferred to oversize).

  1. Ohio U.S.W.V. Reunion Ribbons/Badges #1 1927-1937
  2. Ohio U.S.W.V. Reunion Ribbons/Badges #2 1938-1940
  3. Ohio U.S.W.V. Reunion Ribbons/Badges #3 1941-1947
  4. Ohio Auxiliary U.S.W.V. Reunion Ribbons/Badges 1936-1941
  5. Masonic Ribbons/Badges
  6. Miscellaneous Ribbons/Badges #1
  7. Miscellaneous Ribbons/Badges #2
  8. Ribbons

Miscellaneous Buttons, Badges, and Commemorative Coins


    Totten, John C. Hymns and Spiritual Songs. New York, 1815.

    McGuffey, Wm. H. McGuffey’s Newly Revised Eclectic Fourth Reader. Cincinnati, Ohio, Winthrop B. Smith and Co., 1848.