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Cherokee County Biographies

Robert Miller

ROBERT MILLER, who is in many respects the principal figure of Grand Meadow Township, is a man of wide acquaintance and has many friends wherever he is known.  Few men in the county of Cherokee are held in higher estimation than he.  John Miller was born in the Buckeye State, Muskingum County, April 3, 1840.  His parents, Jacob and Mary (Shufle) Miller, emigrated from Wurtemberg, Germany, to this country about 1832; they had six children: Isabel (died at the age of thirty years) Malcolm, John, Jacob, George, and Kate, wife of Fred Schaller.  

The family settled in Clayton County, Iowa, in 1856; the father was a shoemaker by trade, and made that his business until after he came to Iowa.  He died in October, 1883, aged eighty-six years, having survived his wife only six months.  

John remained at home until the outbreak of the Rebellion, when he enlisted in Company E, Twenty-seventh Iowa Volunteer Infantry, under Captain Thomas G. Drips, and served three years.  His command was first sent to Minnesota to quell the Sioux Indians, and he was in the actions at New Ulm and Mankato, and afterward had the satisfaction of witnessing the execution of thirty-eight Sioux Indians at Mankato, in December, 1862.  After this matter was settled the regiment was sent to the South.  Mr. Miller participated in the capture of Vicksburg and Little Rock; was with Sheridan on his raid through Mississippi; was with General Banks up the Red River, and in the action at Pleasant Hill and Shreveport; after taking part in the Knoxville and Tupelo battles he was sent to follow Price through Missouri, going as far as Kansas City.  After his return to St. Louis he was sent to Nashville to join General Thomas; soon after he reached New Orleans he was sent to Mobile, and assisted in its capture.  He reached home August 9, 1865.  At the taking of Little Rock his blood became overheated, and every summer he has suffered from the effects.  For a year and a half he was detailed as headquarters dispatch carrier for General A. J. Smith.

After his return home he resumed farming, and remained in Clayton County for five years.  Thence he removed to Fayette County, where he resided ten years.  In the fall of 1880 he came to Cherokee County, and after renting land for two years he bought his present farm of 240 acres.  Mr. Miller was married December 29, 1865 to Miss Jane R. Spickelmier, a daughter of Jesse and Sarah (Veach) Spickelmier.  She was born in Hendricks County, Indiana July 18, 1842.  Seven children have been born of this marriage: Homer Clarence, Justus Asa, David Jacob, Hattie Ann, George B., Benjamin Mack and Freddie Schaller.  Home is a student at Shenandoah Normal School, and Just5us is a clerk in the bank at Washta.  Mr. Miller affiliates with the Republican party; he has served as township assessor, and is now justice of the peace for Grand Meadow Township; he is also the present secretary of the School Board.  He is a man of broad views, and lends a supporting hand to every moral and intellectual work, being one of the ablest and most liberal men of the community.

 Source: Biographical History of Cherokee County, IA, W. W. Dunbar & Co Publishers, 1889

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