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.
not pleased with the preaching of the Brethren, but become angry and bitter about it. When they learned afterwards that Bro. Schnell was a Herrnhutter, they wanted to pick a quarrel with Daehlinger, because he did not only not arrest him, but allowed him to preach and even helped him along with his horses. I felt the bitter, hostile and sarcastic spirit of the people in that district very much, and as the conditions were the same at Cedar Creek and in some respects even worse, I did not have the heart to preach to these people, but left again on the next day. The door at these two places is really closed. On April 4-March 24, I crossed the "Missinotty" [Massanutton] Mountain, and, passing the well known Paul's Fort,28 I came to "Missinotty." The road was full of water, stones and wood, so that I had often to think for a while which way the road went. At night I lodged with a Mennonite teacher [minister], Hans Rothen.29 I spoke with him about many things. By nature he is a good, pliable man, but without life. On April 5-March 25, I went to Mafthias Selzer,30 whose wife is the daughter of Jacob Beyerly. He is a rude and hostile man towards the Brethren. I was compelled to stay with this man all afternoon, because I wanted to make inquiries about the people in that district and because I was surrounded by water and terribly high mountains on all sides. He treated me very 28 Powell's Fort, a picturesque valley in the Massanutton range of mouintains. It was so called for one Powell, an Englishman, who, according to tradition, was a counterfeiter. He seems to have been nearly contemporaneous with the first settlements in the lower valley. For further account of this man and locality, see Kercheval's History of the Valley, second edition, p. 267. (Appendix.) 29 The Anglicised name of this man was John Roads. In August, 1766, a party of eight Indians and one white man crossed the Massanutton mountain at Powell's Fort and massacred Roads, his wife, and three sons. See Kercheval's History of the Valley, sec. ed., p 91. 30 In 1751 Mathias Selzer was a member of the County Court of Augusta couinty, Va. See Summer's History of Soutlhwestern Virginia, Richmond, 1903, p. 821, where his name is erroneously printed Seltger. He evidently resided in the southern portion of what is now Page, or the eastern portion of present Rockingham county, which territory was then embraced in Augusta. He was doubtless appointed to represent the rapidly increasing German element in that section of the valley.
BIRTH PLACE OF LITTLE TURTLE. CALVIN YOUNG , GREENVILLE. The village where Little Turtle was born in 1752 was located on the north tributary of the Eel River, twenty miles northwest of Ft. Wayne, Indiana, in Whitney County. This north tributary is known today as the Blue River Branch, near its junction at Blue Lake, to which it furnished an outlet only a short distance away. It stood on the west side of the river on a high sandy point of land, surrounded on three sides by a great bend in the river. A wide prairie marsh skirted those high lands north and south, but on the east the high banks neared each other, making it an easy ford to the north bank of the lake only a few hundred yards to the eastward. The Blue Lake contained possibly five hundred acres. Near the foot of the hill, immediate to the south, a fine spring of water bubbled forth underneath the shade of a beautiful grove of barren oak trees. A short distance south of the spring nestling in the middle of the prairie was a small lake containing four or five acres, and so very deep that the water looked a dark blue. It was called by the Indians "Devil's Lake", from the fact that something mysterious had appeared in or near it entirely unknown to Indian lore during a dusky Summer evening, at which the Indians became terribly frightened and ran all the way to Ft. Wayne then a frontier outpost. Along about 1863, and for a number of years later, the writer has been on this peculiar ancient village site many times, where Little Turtle was born, and which was his home nearly all his life. Along the river banks were Indian trails, worn several inches deep, which not only spoke of primitive, but also of recent times, as it was a flourishing village in 1812, and, possibly, was not entirely deserted until 1846, at which time the Indians were all removed to the West. It seemed that Nature had provided here with a lavish hand
whom we met whether we could cross the mountain to-day. He said: Yes, and told us that some one was living on the mountain with whom we could have an opportunity to stay over night. We believed it and drove to the mountain, but had to pass a large creek1 on the way. Then we tried whether we could ascend the mountain, but it was inmpossible because the foot of the mountain was too steep. We concluded therefore to unload and carry our baggage [on horseback] up on the mountain. Bro. Lischer and Pfeil stayed with the wagon, the rest went up the mountain. Wheni we had covered half of the way it began to rain. It was also difficult for our horses, but we hoped to find the house on top of the mountain, of which the man had spoken. It took us a long time to ascend and when we finally reached the top no house nor water could be found. We were therefore compelled also to descend the mountain, although it was very dark and rained fast. Finally after many vain wishes we reached a little creek in the valley. It had taken us two and a half hours to cross this mountain.2 We then camped, as well as we could, but experienced much difficulty in starting a fire, for it rained very fast and everything was wet. We raised our tent and lay down upon the wet blankets. Here we rested for a while. To-wards morning it cleared and became very cold. On November 3, we went very early back across the mountain to get the rest of the baggage and the wagon. Bro. Gottlob, Nathanael and Kalberland meanwhile stayed with the tent. The brethren who had remained with the wagon also had had a cold night, and we were glad to see them again. We put our baggage once more on our horses and then carried most of our things to the top of the mountain. Here we made a fire and Bro. Haberland staved there. The rest of the brethren went back again to bring up the wagon, which was pretty empty. But we had to push very hard to get the wagon up. After an hour and a half we reached the top safely. After we had loaded the wagon again we drove up hill for a short distance. 1 This large creek is probably Back creek, which is due south of the Roanoke River. 2 This mountain, which gave the Moravian travelers so much trouble, was no doubt the Blue Ridge, which they crossed at Magotty Gap.