This blog entry shall deal with finalizing, almost, the lands of Elder Daniel Miller (1755-1822). Elder Daniel owned land that today lies along the Upper Bear Creek Road of Miami township, Montgomery county, Ohio. When he owned it, and prior to that, the land was owned by Elder Jacob Miller (ca. 1838-1815). Normally to plat land it is fairly easy to transcribe a single deed and overlay that onto high-quality scans of the Montgomery County, Ohio Atlas of 1875. In this instance it is difficult as that particular section, in 1875 versus the early 18th Century, had been cut up into differing tracts. In other words, it was not easily done because of intervening deeds. To rectify this it fell upon me to pull all the deeds, at least those that were recorded for this section, which led to some discoveries.
Today’s blog, the first in a series that will hopefully be an on-going explanation of what I am presently working on, is about the various Brethren Miller families who were early settlers of Montgomery county, Ohio. The opening section below is some comments about the Miller families of note, followed by what I am working on at this time. In essence there are three Miller families that interest me, and I am not even remotely related to any of them, so, to that end, here goes.
He was the first settler there. He was very courteous when he heard that I was a minister. I asked him for the way to Carolina. He told me of one, which runs for 150 miles through Irish settlements, the district being known as the Irish tract. I had no desire to take this way, and as no one could tell me the right way I felt somewhat depressed. I asked the Lord to show me the right way, but slept little that night.* On the 21st, immediately after arising, one of the servants came to me and told me that two miles from there a man lived, who could tell me the right way. I went to him. He was very kind and quite willing to tell me the way. His name is Stephan Schmidt,† a Catholic, but hungry to hear the word of the cross. Many spiritually hungry people, of German nationality, live there, who have no minister. I bade him farewell and went magazine. Rev. Mr. Schnell again visited him in 1749, as shown in the October number, 1903, of the Magazine. Kercheval, in his History of the Valley, makes many references to him, always spelling his name Joist Hite. His real name was Jost (Joseph) Heydt, which fact is attested by many of his deeds recorded in the county clerk's office of Frederick county, Va. He was careless as to the correct spelling of his surname, and it is stated upon the authority of one of his descendants that he spelled it in three different ways on the same day in the execution of three deeds. He was not, as has been so persistently claimed in recent years, the first white settler in the Valley of Virginia. Adam Mueller (Miller) had lived for fifteen years on the South Branch of the Shenandoah when naturalized by Governor Gooch on March 13, 1741-2, which proves, beyond question, that he located there either in 1726 or 1727, while Hite, according to Kercheval, made his settlement on the Opequon, about five miles south of Winchester, Va., in 1732. As to the settlement of Miller, see William and Mary College Quarterly, Vol. IX, No. 2, p. 132; also Vol. X, No. 1, p. 84, and Vol. XI, No. 2, p. 127, Virginia Magazine of History and Biography. As to Hite, see Kercheval's History of the Valley, p. 41, et seq. * The way indicated to the missionary would have led him through the present counties of Rockingham, Augusta, Rockbridge and Botetourt, then, in the fullest sense of the term, the land of the Scotch-Irish. Why an inoffensive missionary should have dreaded the prospect of a journey through their country, is a question to be answered by the historians of that race. † He is also mentioned in Schnell's diary of 1749. See Virginia Magazine, Vol. XI, p. 129.
You, the site visitor reading this, will please make note that one, and only one, of the article titles below has a description attached to it. Please!, contribute to this site by creating descriptive synopsis text about the other articles. It is only through the efforts of yourself and I that these old books can once again become the treasures that they truly are.
Notice: An exorbitant amount of time has gone into this digital project, with it being funded by this writer. So, this series of pages will be available to the general public from this date, January 28, 2014, for two weeks after which they will be available to members only. Or to those who support the preservation efforts.
The articles for this volume, the 20th in the series, published in 1911, are as follows:
I am a King (John 18: 3]. It seemed as if I had hungry souls before me. On November 21st, we stayed quietly at Jacob Hermann's house and spoke with him much about the Saviour and the copgregation [at Bethlehem]. On November 22nd, was exceptionally cold weather for this region. Hence we stayed with our host, Jacob Hermann. A sermon had been appointed for to-day, but as it was very cold none came. On November 23rd, Mr. Hermann went with us to visit Jacob Goldman, whose wife is the sister of my father-in-law. We were received very kindly. On November 24th, we went back to the New River to Hermann's house. He told us that his grandfather was by birth a Moravian, who had been driven from his country because of his religion. We were pleased to hear this. On November 25th, we kept the Sabbath and were often in spirit in Bethlehem. On Sunday, November 26, I preached on the gospel of the "Ten Virgins." The audience received the word with good attention. We wished it would produce an eternal blessing. We were only a few miles from the Seventh Day Baptists [Dunkers] who live here at the New River. But we had enough of the description which the people gave of them. On November 27th. we bade goodbye to our friends with much love and heartiness, and went again on our way. We would have gone further south, but as we could obtain no information of any German settlements (and if there are some they are perhaps 150 miles away), we resolved to face about towards Pennsylvania.* Hence we traveled in that direction to-day. We became very wet through the rain. At night we stayed with an Englishman [Robert Lewis] and dried our clothes. On November 28th, we made again thirty miles. We had to pass the Catawba and Roanoke about thirty times. In the * From this point on the New River to Bethlehem, Pa., it is about 300 miles as the crow flies, but the missionaries in their detours had traveled a considerably greater distance than this.