1883 Businesses in Miller, (Hand County) Dakota Territory
Early Businesses of Miller, D.T.
(Hand County, Dakota Territory)

Recorded in the January 3, 1883 issue of the Hand County Press
Recorded in the January 3, 1883 issue of the Hand County Press


Palace Drug Store:
  J.D. Fitzgerald is the proprietor of the finest drug store west of Winona [Minnesota]. The store is 20x40 feet and was built for $1200 by J.C. Williams. The store opened in June and has done a splendid business since. There is no more complete stock of drugs in Dakota, and besides Mr. Fitzgerald carries a heavy line of cigars and stationery in better stock than can be found elsewhere in Miller. Everything is sold at very reasonable prices.

New Departure Drug Store:
The "New Departure" drug store is a first class drug store and is presided over by Dr. Pyle.


Empire Hall:
Empire Hall is presided over by S. Boatman and we shall judge by the liberal patronage it receives that it is one of the most popular sample rooms in Miller. Together with stock, billiard table, fixtures and building, 20x40 feet, lot and all will cost Mr. Boatman $2000. The Empire billiard hall is the pioneer saloon in Miller.

Board of Trade Saloon:
  F. R. VanDusen runs this establishment in a first class and orderly style. Those desiring to quaff any of the choicest liquors of all the leading varieties will always find them on tap at Frank's. His amiable assistant Frank Battray is a graduate of Ann Arbor school of pharmacy and fills prescriptions promptly and satisfactorily. It is well known that the McBrayer brand of whiskey is the most superior liquor in the market and VanDusen always has this brand in stock. He has expended considerable means in making his place attractive and all attest to the increasing popularity of the Board of Trade saloon.

Iowa Saloon:
  M.S. Abbott is the genial and good-natured proprietor of the Iowa saloon, one of the most popular billiard halls between Pierre and Huron. Mr. Abbot has taken great pains in making his hall attractive. The building he occupies is 20x40 feet and is owned by J.G. Herschelman. Mr. Abbott has one side of his saloon covered with elegant pictures, arranged in an artistic, pleasing manner. His bar, billiard table and other fixtures have cost him nearly $1000.

N. W. Exchange:
  This attractive billiard hall and sample room on the west side of Broadway is kept by Matt Ahern, the building being owned by his brother John Ahern. The Exchange is a neatly fitted and furnished place, supplied with Matt behind the bar. Mr. Ahern is one of the early settlers of the County coming here February 21, 1882 with his family from Morris, Illinois. He also has a splendid claim two and one half miles from Miller.


Hubbard Brothers and Company:
   It is no newspaper talk of buncombe when we assert that the firm of Hubbard Brothers and Company is one of the heaviest lumber firms in the northwest. The gentlemen comprising the firm are A.A. Hubbard, Atlantic, Iowa; R.M. Hubbard, Huron, Huron; Jas. H Warke, Miller. The firm owns some half dozen large lumberyards in Iowa and Dakota, the one at Huron being in charge of R.M. Hubbard. Warke was for a number of years in the employ of Hubbard Brothers in the lumber business in Iowa. He there manifested such a proficiency in the business that Hubbard Brothers insisted on his coming into the firm. Warke has the management of the yard at Miller where about $10,000 stock of lumber has been stored. The yard is located on First Street to the rear of the Vanderbilt Hotel.

Pioneer Lumber Yard:
  F.M. Mead and E.M. Wayne are proprietors of the Pioneer Lumber Yard in Miller. They are doing a lively business and carry a stock worth $5000. Mead is formerly of Carroll, Iowa and opened up the lumber business on his own hook about March 20. [1882] About September last he took into partnership E.M. Wayne also of Carroll. Their square dealing and moderate prices have worked up an enviable patronage for the firm, and early in the spring they will enlarge their stock of lumber, several thousands of dollars worth. The office is south of the railroad track, just west of the depot.

Dwigans and Smith Lumber:
  This firm also does a flourishing lumber business. Their yards are being located west of Mead and Wayne. They carry a stock worth $5000. B.R. Dwigans has two town lots in Garlicks addition to Miller. C.E. Smith is also in the jewelry business. Both gentlemen are from Benton County, Iowa.


W.E. Rowland:
  W.E. Rowland is proprietor of the pioneer livery stable in Hand County. He came here in November 1881 and opened up his stable in February following. His stable is 40x50 feet and has accommodations for 38 horses. The property including stock, carriages, wagons and all, cost Mr. Rowland over $3400. He is doing a big business and manages a liberal and commendable enterprise by assuring the citizens of Miller that there is ample business to demand another livery stable in Miller.

W.H. Stout:
  W.H Stout has commenced the erection of another livery stable 30x60 feet with stalls for 20 horses. He expects to equip the business in first class style at a cost of some $3000. The stable will be on Arno Street.

Loan and Loan:
  W.J. and Lewis Loan have recently arrived from Iowa City and have already commenced erecting a mammoth 40x70 foot livery stable on the corner of Second and Ettie Streets. They will put in 20 teams and have their business in operation by the latter part of February. These gentlemen have the reputation of being live enterprising business men where they formerly lived.


Hand County Press:
  This paper was started January 4, 1882 with W.H. and E.J. Miller, proprietors and publishers. It is the pioneer paper of Hand County and has been instrumental in bringing many settlers to better their condition on the fertile plains of Ree and Turtle Valleys. On November 20, 1882 it passed into the hands of Kephart and Seward who are endeavoring to make the paper worth of the confidence and patronage of the people of Hand and adjoining counties.

Dakota State Journal:
  One of the newsiest and brightest papers in the northwest, the Dakota State Journal, is published in Miller by S.L. Sage. The paper started during the fore part of last August [1882] under Johnson, Sprague and Co, and the fore part of October it changed hands and was published by Sage and Sprague until December 17 when Sage bought out his partner and is now sole proprietor and publisher. Under Mr Sage's management the paper has made rapid progress and no paper its age ever had better prospects.


Moffatt and Beasom [Hardware]:
  About the first of last month [Dec.1882] two young men, B.L Moffatt of Chicago and George Beasom of Hudson, Michigan bought the hardware stock, building and lots of Getzel and Co., corner of Broadway and Second Streets. They have since put $10,000 into their business and they now carry absolutely the largest stock of any house west of the Jim River Beside their splendid stock of hardware they carry a full stock of farming implements and building material. They occupy a two story building 20x20 feet which with the two lots are worth $3500. These young men have an unlimited amount of "git up and git" and undoubtedly will have a fine success.

J.A. Daniels [Hardware & Implement businesses]:
  J.A. Daniels opened up business in Miller March 4, 1882 in a building 20x40 feet where he has a new stock of hardware worth $4500.
  He conducts the leading implement business in Hand County in a building 20x60 feet. Mr Daniels is of Belle Plaine, Iowa, of which place he was a pioneer settler also.


Vanderbilt Hotel:
  MA. Thompson proprietor. This building is 60x50 feet and stories high with a mansard roof. Will accommodate 200 people. The hotel was finished on October last [1882] at a cost of $8000. It is the finest hotel along the division of the Chicago and Northwestern Railroad as is generally admitted by all the traveling men who are the best critics in the world on such matters.

Commercial House:
  John T. Cartwright and William Weber proprietors. This is the pioneer hotel of Miller and has accommodations for 150 people. The building is a two story, and cost, all told, $3000. Cartwright and Weber are formerly of Iowa City, Iowa and each has been instrumental in inducing a large number of the Iowa City people to locate in Miller and Hand County.

Munger House:
  This hotel is run by Miss Florence and Ada Munger. Their father opened the house about a year ago. They can accommodate 100 people. The building is two story and cost, when completed, in all $2500. The two story building adjoining on the south was recently built by Mr. Munger for $1800. This building is rented for $660 a year. Mr. Munger also owns the vacant lot adjoining for which he will not take less than $1000. Mr Munger has "proved up" on a claim within a half mile of Miller He has filed his declaratory on another and has a tree claim within a few miles of the town.

There are a number of private boarding houses in town which we need not mention, yet in this connection it is proper to notice the restaurants.


W.H Stout, restaurant [no name listed]:
  W.H. Stout operates a first class restaurant on Broadway. He owns the building he occupies which was recently finished at a cost of $2000. The restaurant averages 75 meals per day during the present dull season.

Newmire Brothers, restaurant [no first names listed]:
  These young men have just opened up a fine restaurant in the Postoffice block. They occupy accommodation quarters 22x40 and furnish excellent meals at any hour of the day. You can do no better for clothing the inner man than by going to the Newmire Brothers restaurant.

City Bakery & restaurant:
  H.R. Garlick is an old pioneer and operates the City Bakery. His baking apparatus has a capacity of 1000 loaves per day. Mr. Garlick also runs a first class restaurant in connection with his baking business.

D.W. Knapper:
  In connection with his [see] NEWS STAND, he operates a first class restaurant.


  W.S Montgomery and Judge B.F. Payne occupy a neat office building on east Broadway, two doors north of the Vanderbilt Hotel. They do an extensive business as attorneys at law, real estate and loan agents. They are also sole agents, excepting M.H. Montgomery, for the Miller Town Co. W.S. Montgomery is formerly of Council Bluffs, Iowa. His father, the Honorable B.F. Montgomery, is one of the leading attorneys of Denver, Colorado and through him, W.S. acquired a thorough and practical training in law, which is being turned to benefit upon a large, lucrative and constantly increasing practice. B.F. Payne is now serving his second term of Probate Judge of Hand County. He comes highly recommended from Gibson, Illinois where he was a number of years attorney for several railroads and filled important places of trust at the hands of the people The judge is interested in a large lumber yard at Bramhall besides owning other property in Miller and St. Lawrence. Montgomery also has considerable property in the way of resident and business lots in Miller and Garlick's addition thereto.

Hand County Land Office:
  C.H. Gardner - There is no place of business in Miller or Hand County so familiar to the general public as the Hand County Land Office. It is generally conceded that for low rates and easy terms on loans, Brother Gardner "hypothecates the hoe cake." Mr. Gardner loans money on real estate in Hand and Hyde Counties, prepares final proof carefully and keeps a magnificent set of abstract books. He also makes collections, does a big insurance business and sells steamship tickets to all parts of the world and sings tenor. Mr. Gardner pays close attention to his business at his office on east Broadway, one door north of Loew and Gromann's mammoth store.

G.O. Hutson:
  G.O. Hutson is an attorney and counselor at law and has an extensive practice. He is also a loan and real estate agent and locates claims of all kinds. Office east Broadway between First and Second Streets.

Firestone and Weeks:
  We make the unqualified assertion that the firm stands in the van in the way of transacting law, loan, land and insurance business. They buy and sell deeded lands and city property, cultivate tree claims and pay taxes for non-residents, also make final proofs and abstracts. George C. Firestone was trained in the practice of law by C.C Cole, ex-Supreme Judge of Iowa. Mr. Firestone came to Miller April 13 [1882] and went into partnership with C.H. Weeks July 22. Mr. Weeks is formerly of Washington, Iowa where he had held the office of Deputy County Treasurer for four years, previous to his advent in Miller March 4. He was appointed Register of Deeds and ex-officio County Clerk of Hand County in September and re-elected to the same in November by a handsome majority.

J.J. Smith, attorney:
  The gentleman is a recent graduate of the law department of Iowa University. His former home is in DesMoines, Iowa. He started in business in Miller about Agust 6 [1182}. He owns the building in which he offices. This building is 20x40 feet and two stories high costing when completed $2000. Mr. Smith also owns four lots in Garlick's addition He does law, real estate, and insurance business and is meet with good success.

Corbett and Foster:
  One of the best known firms in Hand County is composed of Phillip Corbett and Frank P Foster. This firm does an enormous business procuring claims in Hand, Faulk, Beadle, Buffalo, Sully and Hyde Counties They aslo have large interests in the town site of Highmore, the county seat of Hyde County located on the Chicago and Northwestern twenty-three miles west of Miller. They do a large business making final proofs and loaning money for parties in Hand and Hyde Counties. These gentlemen came from Indiana and located in Miller in May [1882]. Their office is at the Vanderbilt Hotel. Correspondence solicited by Corbett and Foster, Attorneys and Counselors at law.

Vanhosen, Moon and Henyan:
  Attorneys at law, real estate and insurance agents. They are proprietors of the Metropolitan Hall, a building 40x50 feet and costing $4000. These gentlemen pay prompt attention to locating parties on homesteads, timber claims and pre-emptions. They also loan money, make final proof and buy and sell land.

Gray and White:
  We also take pleasure in introducing the firm of Gray and White, also attorneys at law, real estate, and loan agents. They give special attention to surveying and locating claims and furnishing plats and abstracts on most reasonable terms.

  Among other locating agents we have H.L. Kelley, at CH. Gardner's office. Charlie Persons at Corbett and Foster's office. Eudell and J.D Miller at the Miller Town Company's office, etc. etc. ad libitum.


Loew and Gromann:
  If there is any business interest Miller has reason to be proud of it is the mammoth general merchandise store of Loew and Gromann. They occupy a large double room 40x60 feet with a $10,000 stock of groceries and dry goods, clothing, boots and shoes. There is no heavier stock of goods in Dakota. Their dry goods department occupies the right hand room on entering the building and is replete with dress goods of all kinds, carpets, ladies' furnishings, goods, clothing, etc. etc all of the very latest styles and best materials. Passing through the arched position we are in the grocery department where we find staple and fancy groceries in endless variety, crockery, glassware, willow and wooden ware, canned goods of all kinds, in fact you can obtain anything under the sun at Loew and Gromann's at remarkably low cost. The upper story is divided into offices and sleeping apartments. The building cost $4000.

L.A. Martz:
  One of the best natured and most popular merchants in these parts is L.A Martz who is located in the center of the business part of Miller with one of the best groceries in Dakota. He has had years of experience in the business and knows how to buy and sell with advantage to himself and his customers. He carries a full line of all the choice staple and fancy groceries the market affords and always keeps his stock up in first class shape. He also carries a large repairing and manufacturing all the time. This store has won the reputation of letting goods go at the very lowest prices, which accounts for its large and constantly increasing patronage.

O.C. Jewett:
  O.C. Jewett is the proprietor of the pioneer grocery store of Miller and keeps his shelves crowded with all the staple and fancy groceries of the market. He keeps a full line of glassware, crockery, willow and wooden ware, all of which he sells at the lowest Mr. Jewett owns the building in which his store is located which cost $800.

Dr. L. Pyle:
  Dr L. Pyle also carries a fine stock of groceries, stationery, dry goods, etc. which he sells dirt cheap The Doctor built the two story building which he occupies for about $1700.

William McMurray:
  William McMurray also carries a large stock of groceries, clothing, boots and shoes, etc. etc. worth some $5000.

J.N. Gass:
J.N. Gass is proprietor of one of the best general merchandise stores in Central Dakota. He always keeps a fresh and choice stock of staple and fancy groceries, a fine line of boots and shoes, gloves and mittens, and his prices defy competition. His building, lot and stock is worth probably $4000.


Willet and Torrey Meat Market:
  R.S Willet and Frank Torrey run the only first class rural meat market between Huron and Pierre. They supply nearly all the neighboring towns besides Miller and give the best satisfaction. Every day fresh beef, pork and mutton may be seen piled on the depot platform labeled by Willet and Torrey for St. Lawrence, Bramhall, Wessington, Highmore and even as far west as Blunt. Their building is 23x40 feet, two story and cost some $2300.


L.W Arnold:
  L.W. Arnold has just opened a splendid new stock of harness, saddles, blanklets, robes, whips and everything that equips a first class harness shop.  Mr. Arnold is a superior workman and every set of harness he makes wears for years. He owns the building and lot he occupies which, with stock is worth $1000.

J.B. Daniels:
J.B. Daniels carries a heavy line of harness and everything else to be procured of a harness dealer. He carries a stock worth $1000.


C.B. Mapel:
  C. B Mapel at present has the exclusive trade in lime, cement, stucco, plastering, hair and brick. Mr Mapel is one of our first settlers and has done a great deal in booming and assiting Miller in her wonderful progress. His hand will dive for his last quarter every time in assisting any worthy enterprise.
  The large business block occupied by L.A. Martz belongs to Mr. Mapel is 22x40 feet and two stories high and cost when completed $3000. His lime building and property on Arno Street cost $1700. Mr. Mapel is doing a large business also in buying and selling grain He has recently purchased the building occupied by the Hand County Press.


Hand County Bank:
  This institution opened up recently in a neat building corner of Broadway and Second Streets, and is doing a fine banking business already. The officers are as follows: J.C. Yetzer, president; J.B. Jones, vice president; A.D Hill, cashier; J.L. Roll, assistant cashier. Isaac Dickerson, a director of Cass County Bank, Atlantic, Iowa is also largely interested in the bank. J.C. Yetzer is president of Cass County Bank at Atlantic, Iowa and Mr. Dickerson is one of the directors of the same bank. All the officers of the Hand County Bank are more or less largely interested in real estate in Iowa and make one of the strongest banking institutions in Dakota.


B.F. Stramm:
  B.F. Stramm conducts the only furniture store in Miller. He has just filled his capacious store with a tremendous stock of goods that will compare favorably with any furniture store in Dakota.It is not all ordinary furniture, as he has some elegant parlor and bedroom sets fit to adorn the house of a lord. You should remember also that Stramm's prices are too low to justify anyone going east to buy furniture. His stock and property cost all told $4500.


D.W. Knapper:
  D.W. Knapaper keeps a first class news stand near the center of the business part of Miller. He keeps constantly on hand all the leading periodicals.
[see] RESTAURANTS - In connection with this he operates a first class restaurant.


W.H. Miller:
W.H. Miller runs a first class book and stationery store in the Post Office room. He has a stock work some $1000.


Mrs. F.M. Mead:
  Mrs. F.M. Mead is running a first class millinery business at the residence of FM. Mead on West Hill.

VanHosen & Legan:
  Misses VanHosen and Legan are also doing a first class millinery business in the Loew and Gromann's block.


C.E. Smith:
C.E. Smith is proprietor of as fine a jewelry store as is found along the Chicago and Northwestern between Huron and Pierre. His large stock of silver-plated ware was considerably reduced by the holiday season, but he is expecting a large invoice every day and everything to be found in a first class jewelry store can be obtained at C.E. Smith's.


  J.N. Templeman has recently opened a very neat gallery on Second and Arno Streets. The building is 18x30 feet and is divided into a reception room, operating room and one or two others. The whole cost Mr. Templeman some $2000. Mr. Macy, the photographer, is at present in the east but will be in Miller in a few days. They do first class work and it is safe to predict a good business for Mr. Templeman. He has on hand a stock of elegant picture frames, albums, etc. The public is respectfully requested to make a call and crack the camera.


C. Sullivan:
  C. Sullivan does a general blacksmith and repairing business on Arno Street.

J.D. Laurence:
  J.D. Laurence, the pioneer blacksmith of Hand County also has a blacksmith shop on Arno Street.


John Grumstad:
  John Grumstad, a Miller pioneer, has erected a 40x60 foot ice house with a capacity for 400 tons of ice

Willett and Torrey: [see MEAT MARKET]
  Willett and Torrey are also putting up several hundred tons of ice

S. Boatman:
  S Boatman has put up half a hundred tons of ice also.


  L.W. and George Myers run a first class barber shop on Broadway and are doing a thriving business.


  Rank and Young are doing an exclusive business in this line Their building and vacant lot adjoining cost some $2000. They also own lots on Arno Street.


  Fred R. Clark carries the only exclusive stock of boots and shoes in Miller and is working up a fine trade. As a manufacturer he has no superior. His building, lot and stock cost nearly $1200.


  W.W Emmons bought out the coal business of F.M. Mead October 10 [1882]. He supplies the entire demand of Miller and vicinity. He keeps constantly on hand 100 tons of soft coal and about 50 tons of hard coal. He orders the coal ahead so as to keep the market constantly stocked. Mr. Emmons and lady came to Miller September 6 from Iowa City, Iowa.


  Among our contractors and builders we have H.A. Smith and J.H. Westcott, John T. Cartwright, H. Newmire, Macy Brothers, R.A. Post, W.B. Young, H.A. Atkeson, R.N. Ross, D.W. Prentice, H.E. Herrick and Mr. Wilson.


  J.V. Munger and Thomas Carewel. The latter is the father of the first child born in Miller which important event occurred September 12, 1882.

  The Presbyterian and Methodist societies have a strong following here. Rev. A.S. Foster is pastor of the former congregation and Rev. Weir of the latter. Services are held at present in the Metropolitan Hall each Sabbath, one denomination having services in the morning and the other in the evening Both societies have purchased lots and will erect churches in the spring.


  Dr. S.E. Morse is conducting the city schools at present over Loew and Gromann's double store. There is an attendance at present of 60 pupils. Arrangements have been made for erecting a commodious school building early in the spring The Town Company has already set aside lots for that purpose.


  Of those who administer to our sick, which are imported are: Dr. O.B. Thompson, Dr. L. Pyle, and Dr S.E. Morse.


  Dr. W. H. Barker, office in Munger's new block


  Prof. W.H. Westcott gives vocal instructions twice each week to a singing class of 40 pupils. The Miller orchestra is composed of L.W. Arnold, S.L. Sage, H. Newmire, J.H Westcott, William Weber and Lewis Dawson.


  In October 1881 the Post Office was established at Miller with W.H Miller as postmaster who still retains that position. The sale of stamps averages $275 per month and box rent $23 per month. W.H. Miller has been fortunate enough to secure the services of Miss Emma Acklen of Atlantic, Iowa to manage the office. Miss Acklen has had several years experience in post office duties at her former home, which she performed in an able and creditable manner.


  Miller Town Company is composed of the following gentlemen: W.H. and E.J. Miller, J.C. Yetzer, Isaac Dickerson, J.B. Jones, and A.D. Hill. Their office is in the rear of the Hand County Bank. M.H. Montgomery is agent for the town company's lots. This gentleman is enterprising and full of vim and business. He is one of Miller's best boomers.

Garlic and Wilkins are the proprietors of an addition to the townsite of Miller on the west comprising 80 acres.


  The famous gulch of the above name is situated about five miles southwest of Miller in the Ree Hills. It opens in the east on the great Ree Valley. This gulch has 20 acres of fine heavy timber, some of the trees being 2 1/2 feet in diameter. It was located over two years ago by Frank D. Adams. There are six large springs in the gulch that never fail in the driest seasons. Near the mouth of the Gulch lies 160 acres of as fine hay as there is in the world, owned by John D. Campbell, who also has one or two claims adjoining the gulch above named. There is thus formed one of the most magnificent stock ranches in Dakota with Campbell and Adams as proprietors. Near the head of this gulch they have erected a fine two story residence at a cost of $3000. They also have a shed 300 feet long which at present accommodates a herd of 400 sheep. They also have nearly 100 head of cattle. There are scores of other gulches in the Ree and Wessington Hills similarly adapted for stock ranches.
Note the flowery-style of writing!!
Because there are so many names mentioned here, along with bios and tidbits of info, a separate, complete index is also provided on this site for your convenience. CSR
This page was last modified by Carolyn S. Rosemore 4 Feb 2001