He served during the war as captain of Company K, Thirty-fourth Iowa Infantry volunteers. Mr. Allen's mother was formerly Carrie Smith, a native of New York state.
Milt. H. Allen, as he is commonly called, was born February 11, 1859, at Decorah. His earliest instruction was received in the public schools of that town, and was continued at Spencer, in Clay county, whither he moved with his parents in 1871. Five years later the family moved to O'Brien county, settling at Sheldon, where Mr. Allen began reading law in 1877 in the office of Barrett & Allen, the members of the firm being 0. M. Barrett, afterwards state senator, and C. T. Allen, the father of Milton. He was chiefly occupied by his studies for the next few years, though at one time he stopped to accept a position as brakeman on the old Sioux City & St. Paul railway. He was admitted to the bar in the district court of O'Brien county, May 9, 1881, and immediately began practicing in his home town. He removed to Sanborn in 1884, and, after enjoying a good business there for nine years, returned to Sheldon, November, 1, 1893, where he still resides. One of the most important cases he has tried was in February, 1891, on a question of habeas corpus, in which he succeeded in releasing John Telford from the penitentiary at Sioux Falls, S. D., where he had served two of a fifteen-years' sentence for robbery. The point raised was the uncertainty of the statute under which the sentence was pronounced. Since that time Mr. Allen has been employed in nearly all the important cases in O'Brien and adjoining counties, making a specialty of railroad, corporation and criminal law. He has been the local attorney for the Chicago, Milwaukee & St. Paul Railroad company since 1889 and of the Chicago, St. Paul, Minneapolis & Omaha since 1895.
In politics Mr. Allen was a democrat all his life until 1896, when he bolted the Chicago free silver platform and joined the republican forces, making campaign speeches all over northwestern Iowa for McKinley and sound money. He is a member of the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks, belonging to the Sioux Falls Lodge No. 262. He is not a member of any church.
Source: Biographies and portraits of the progressive men of Iowa, Benjamin F. Gue, Published by Conaway & Shaw, 1899, p. 302