91st PA: William B Miller

William B Miller

Before the war

On 15 June 1840, William's father, James, married Elizabeth [unknown surname], at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. They were married by Reverend Mr Elliott. [sources: 15, 17]

William Miller was born in 1839/40, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. [sources: date: 7 (21 in 1861), 8 (21 in 1861), 18 (7 in 1850), 19 (18 in 1860). place: 7, 8, 18, 19. parents: 15, 18, 19]

In 1850, he was living in ward 5, Northern Liberties, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He was living with his parents James and Elizabeth, and with Mary and Emma (presumably siblings). He had attended school within the year. [source: 18]

In 1860, he was living in ward 1, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He was living with his parents James and Eliza, and with others. He was a laborer. [source: 19]

When he enlisted, he was a seaman, and was living in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, when he was enlisted. [source: 8]

Description

When he enlisted, he was 5 feet 7 inches tall, and had a fair complexion, blue eyes, and brown [?] hair. He had a scar on the back of his right hand, and a large wart [?] on the knuckle of his "left far finger". [sources: 7, 8 (5'8", light complexion, blue eyes, light hair)]

During the war

He enlisted and was mustered into service, at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on 27 August 1861. He was enlisted for three years, by Colonel Reiff. He was a private in company C. [sources: 1, 7, 8, 15, 25]

He fought at the Battle of Gettysburg. [source: 11]

He seems to have been detailed as a teamster on 22 September 1863, but his name is crossed out, and the order may have been rescinded. [source: 3]

He reenlisted as a veteran volunteer, on 26 December 1863, at Bealton, Virginia. He was enlisted for three years, at Bealton, Virginia, by Lieutenant Swan (9). [sources: 1, 8, 9 (24 Dec 63), 15]

On 11 January 1864, he married Eliza Jane Jones. She was born in February 1845, in Pennsylvania. He had no living children when he died. [source: 15 (53 in 1898), 20 (25 in 1870), 22 (Feb 1845)]

On 8 to 9 June 1864, he was treated for diarrhea and returned to duty. [source: 15]

He was killed in action on 18 June 1864 at Petersburg, Virginia. His body was rescued, and brought within the lines, by Charles Coates (C), while under enemy fire. He was a private, in company C. [sources: 1, 4, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 15 (some reports, including one from regimental surgeon W G Keir) have him dying in hospital on 20 June 1864), 23 (20 Jun), 25]

He was buried on 20 June 1864 probably originally on Prince George Road, one-half mile east of Meade Station; other soldiers from this same area were moved to Poplar Grove Cemetery, but most of them are now listed as unknown soldiers at Poplar Grove. However, he seems to have been buried at the City Point National Cemetery, Hopewell, Hopewell City,Virginia. [sources: 1 (near Petersburg), 2 (City Point), 5 (Prince George Road, removed to Poplar Grove), 6 (in the field), 8 (near Petersburg), 12 (Prince George Road, removed to Poplar Grove), 23 (City Point), 24 (City Point)]

After the war

On 30 July 1864, his widow, Eliza Jane Miller, applied successfully for a pension, from Pennsylvania, under the Act of 14 July 1862. Her post office address was 402 Pierce Street, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Her application was accepted on 12 December 1864, and she received $8 per month, retroactive to 20 June 1864. [sources: 13, 14, 15]

About 1867, Eliza Jane Miller started living with Joseph Daniel Koken (known as John Cogan), initially in Norristown, Montgomery County, Pennsylvania. They never openly acknowledged being married to each other, and whether they were married was questioned, but at least some people assumed that they were. They had at least three children, one of whom died while they were in Norristown. After the funeral, John Cogan told Elizabeth F Young that he might get married:

the death of the child was a judgement on him because he was not married to the woman he was living with as his wife, that he did not think they could raise any children if they did not get married

(He apparently made similar remarks on his own deathbed.) [source: 15]

In 1870, his widow, Eliza, was living in Plymouth Township, Montgomery County, Pennsylvania. She was living with Joseph Cogan (her husband, according to the Pension Office), and with William and Mary (their children). [source: 20]

Eliza Jane Miller and John Cogan moved to Conshohocken, Montgomery County, Pennsylvania, after living for a few years in Norristown. [source: 15]

On 2 February 1873, John Cogan was killed by a boiler explosion at Woods Iron Mill, Conshohocken, Montgomery County, Pennsylvania. [sources: 15, 16]

Eliza Jane Miller had twins after John Cogan's death, before 1879. [source: 15]

Eliza Jane Miller received $5 per month from the Woods Brothers after John Cogan's death, as his widow, having reached an 'amicable settlement' with them, unlike some of the deceased men's families, who sued the company. They stopped giving her that benefit because of reports that she had married someone named 'Pollock'. [source: 15]

In March 1879, Pension Office special examiner M E Jenks investigated reports that Eliza Jane Miller had remarried. Based on the evidence he collected, the Pension Office decided that she had remarried, and stopped her pension, on 31 March 1879. (The pension certificate file does not provide any evidence that she was tried for fraud, perhaps she could reasonably have believed they were not married.) [source: 15]

On 7 April 1879, Edward Schall, of Norristown, sent the Pension Office evidence that Eliza Jane Miller had not remarried. On 22 May 1879, the Pension Office replied, claiming that the evidence was not sufficient. On 9 June 1879, the Pension Office received further evidence, which they rejected on 8 August 1879. [source: 15]

In 1880, his widow, Eliza, was living on Elm Street, in ward 2, Conshohocken, Montgomery County, Pennsylvania. She was living with her husband Robert Pollock, and children William, Samuel, Emma, and Sarah. [source: 21]

William Miller's mother Elizabeth Miller died on 29 April 1883, at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. On 3 May 1883, she was buried in Philadelphia Cemetery. [sources: 15, 17]

On 10 March 1891, his father, James Miller, applied unsuccessfully from Pennsylvania for a pension, under the act of 27 June 1890. His address was 510 Cantrull Street, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. His application was rejected because William Miller had left a widow at his death, who had received a pension. [sources: 13, 14, 15]

On 28 February 1898, Eliza Jane Miller applied for her pension to be resumed. She was living at 516 Spring Mill Avenue, Conshohocken, Pennsylvania. Her application was rejected because of her remarriage to Joseph D Koken. [source: 15]

In 1900, his widow, Eliza, was living at 516 Spring Mill Avenue, ward 3, Conshohocken, Montgomery County, Pennsylvania. She was living with her husband Robert Pollock, children Sarah and Ida, and a boarder and grandson. She had had twelve children, five of whom were alive. [source: 22]

Sources

1 Bates, Samuel Penniman. History of Pennsylvania volunteers, 1861-5. Harrisburg: B. Singerly, state printer, 1869-71. 5 volumes. 'Ninety-first regiment', volume 3, pages 186-233. (In the roster)

2 City Point National Cemetery, interment index (searched 5 October 2000)

3 special order 88, HQ 91st PA, 22 September 1863

4 special order 54, HQ 91st PA, 28 June 1864

5 Poplar Grove Cemetery records (thanks to Elizabeth Dinger-Glisan for the information!) (William D Miller)

6 company C, register of deaths (Wm B Miller)

7 company C, descriptive roll, entry 54 (William B Miller)

8 Civil War Veterans' Card File, available at the Pennsylvania State Archives, searched 7 July 2004 (William B Miller)

9 company C, untitled list, probably of status at muster out, entry 97 (Wm B Miller)

10 consolidated morning report, 91st Pennsylvania, 29 June 1864 (Pri Miller)

11 Pennsylvania Memorial, Gettysburg, Pennsylvania (Wm B Miller)

12 'Our illustrious dead', Philadelphia Inquirer 20 July 1865 page 2 (William D Miller)

13 pension index, by regiment, 91st PA Infantry, company C (William B Miller)

14 pension index, by name (William B Miller)

15 widow's pension certificate file, National Archives and Records Administration, record group 15, widow's certificate 36,138 (Eliza Jane Jones widow of William B Miller)

16 'The Conshohocken disaster', Philadelphia Inquirer Wednesday 5 February 1873, page 2

17 death notice, Philadelphia Inquirer, Thursday 3 May 1883, page 4, Eliza Miller

18 1850 US census, Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Northern Liberties, ward 5, microfilm series M432, film 811, page 341 recto = 679 handwritten = 175 handwritten (FamilySearch) (William Miller)

19 1860 US census, Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, ward 1, division 2, microfilm series M653, film 1151, pages 56 = 56 handwritten to 57 = 57 handwritten (FamilySearch) (William Miller)

20 1870 US census, Pennsylvania, Montgomery County, Plymouth Township, post office Plymouth Meeting, microfilm series M593, film 1378, page 183 recto = 33 handwritten (FamilySearch) (Eliza R Cogan)

21 1880 US census, Pennsylvania, Montgomery County, Conshohocken, ward 2, supervisor's district 4, enumeration district 41, microfilm series T9, film 1159, page 321 = 14 B handwritten (FamilySearch) (Eliza Pollock)

22 1900 US census, Pennsylvania, Montgomery County, Conshohocken Borough, ward 3, supervisor's district 2, enumeration district 284, microfilm series T623, film 1445, page 222 = 5 A handwritten (FamilySearch) (Eliza Pollock)

23 US National Cemetery interment control cards, 1928-1962 (WB Miller)

24 Find a grave, memorial 3074010, imported from US Veteran's Affairs, 4 March 2000, accessed 21 October 2012 (W B Miller--note that the Find-a-grave index has 'W S Miller', but the pictured headstone clearly has 'W B Miller')

25 index to compiled service records of volunteer Union soldiers who served in organizations from the state of Pennsylvania (William B Miller)

Sources checked unsuccessfully

1880 US census
[510 Cantrell--the residence of his parents apparently by 1883--is at Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, supervisor's district 1, enumeration district 28, microfilm series T9, film 1167, page 437 = 8 D handwritten; the only family living there is Henry S Norris (37, b. DE) et al.]
1890 US census, veterans schedules
Ancestry index (accessed 20 October 2012)
1910 US census
Ancestry index: searched for Eliza b. 1845+/1 PA in Conshohocken (accessed 20 October 2012)
1920 US census
Ancestry index: searched for Eliza b. 1845+/1 PA in Conshohocken (accessed 20 October 2012)
1930 US census
Ancestry index: searched for Eliza b. 1845+/1 PA in Conshohocken (accessed 20 October 2012)
applications for headstones for military veterans, 1925-1941
FamilySearch index (accessed 21 October 2012)
records of headstones of deceased Union veterans, 1879-1903
FamilySearch index (accessed 21 October 2012)

Display


William B Miller in the 91st PA gedcom on RootsWeb WorldConnect

William B Miller in the 91st PA database

1850 census

[1850 US census, Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Northern Liberties, ward 5, microfilm series M432, film 811, page 341 recto = 679 handwritten = 175 handwritten (FamilySearch)]
[identification is likely--I found no other candidates living with a James and Elizabeth Miller; however, a William Miller, 11, was living in Penn, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, with no one else surnamed 'Miller']
line45678
Dwellings visited1030    
Families visited1186    
NameJames MillerElizabethMaryWilliamEmma
Age3532975
SexMFFMF
Color     
Occupation of males over 15 yearsplane maker    
Real estate owned     
Birthplace" [sc. Pa]""""
Married within year     
Attended school within year   111
Over 20 & can't read/write     
Deaf, dumb, blind, etc.     

1860 census

[1860 US census, Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, ward 1, division 2, microfilm series M653, film 1151, pages 56 = 56 handwritten to 57 = 57 handwritten (FamilySearch)]
[I did not transcribe the other four people in this residence, Henry Beck, George Koones, Cathrine [Koones], and Chas Robinson]
[identification is likely, since I found no other candidates living with James and Eliza Miller; note also that Deliah 20 could be the Adelia Lowrey, who is William's sister (based on their mother's death notice);
line35363738394012
Dwelling number330       
Family number366       
NameJames MillerElizaJacobMaryDeliahJamesWilliam MillerEbnerzer
Age4043253820191815
Sexmfmffmmm
Color        
OccupationLabourer    "Labourer 
Value of real estate owned        
Value of personal estate100       
Place of birth" [sc. Phila]"""""Phila"
Married within year        
Attended school within year        
Cannot read & write        
Deaf, dumb, blind, etc.        

1870 census

[1870 US census, Pennsylvania, Montgomery County, Plymouth Township, post office Plymouth Meeting, microfilm series M593, film 1378, page 183 recto = 33 handwritten (FamilySearch)]
[identification is probable, given her surname and apparent husband's name (see the widow's pension certificate file)]
line32333435
Dwelling-house number254   
Family number254   
NameCogan JosephEliza RWilliam S.Mary E.
Age292516/12
SexMFMF
sColorWWWW
OccupationWorks in Lime Stone QuarryKeeping House  
Real estate value    
Personal estate value100   
BirthplacePennaPennaPennaPenna
Father foreign born    
Mother foreign born    
Birth month if born within year   Dec
Marriage month if married within year    
Attended school past year    
Can't read    
Can't write    
Deaf, dumb, blind, etc.    
Male US citizen at least 21 years old1   
Male US citizen at least 21 years old who can't vote ...    

1880 census

[1880 US census, Pennsylvania, Montgomery County, Conshohocken, ward 2, supervisor's district 4, enumeration district 41, microfilm series T9, film 1159, page 321 = 14 B handwritten (FamilySearch)]
[identification is probable, given her husband's name, and the fact that Emma and Sarah are twins (see the widow's pension certificate file abstracted below)]
[I searched Ancestry's index for Eliza Jane Miller OR Cogan, resident Conshohocken, Montgomery, PA--no one (accessed 20 October 2012)]
line363738394041
street nameElm Street
house number      
dwelling visit #      
family visit #133     
namePollock Robert- Eliza- William- Samuel- Emma- Sarah
colorWWWWWW
sexMFMMFF
age353512633
month born if born in year      
relationship WifeSonSonDaughterDaughter
single      
married11    
widowed/divorced      
married during year      
occupationLaborerKeeping houseAt SchoolAt School  
months unemployed      
currently ill?   Hip Disease  
blind      
deaf/dumb      
idiotic      
insane      
disabled      
school this year  11  
can't read11    
can't write11    
birthplacePennsylvaniaPennsylvaniaPennsylvaniaPennsylvaniaPennsylvaniaPennsylvania
father's birthplacePenaPenaPenaPenaPenaPena
mother's birthplacePenaPenaPenaPenaPenaPena

1900 census

[1900 US census, Pennsylvania, Montgomery County, Conshohocken Borough, ward 3, supervisor's district 2, enumeration district 284, microfilm series T623, film 1445, page 222 = 5 A handwritten (FamilySearch)]
[identification is probable; see the note on the 1880 census entry transcribed above]
line394041424344
streetSpring Mill Avenue
house number516     
dwelling number106     
family number106     
namePollock Robert- Eliza- Sarah- IdaDutterer GeorgeWright John
relationshipHeadWifeDaughterDaughterBoarderGrandson
colorWWWWWW
sexMFFFMM
birth dateOct 1852Feb 1845June 1877May 1882Feb 1838Feb 1898
age47552217622
married?MMSSSS
# years married3030    
mother of how many children? 12    
# of children living 5    
birthplacePennsylvaniaPennsylvaniaPennsylvaniaPennsylvaniaPennsylvaniaPennsylvania
father's birthplaceIrelandPennsylvaniaPennsylvaniaPennsylvaniaPennsylvaniaPennsylvania
mother's birthplaceNew JerseyPennsylvaniaPennsylvaniaPennsylvaniaPennsylvaniaPennsylvania
immigration year      
# years in USA      
naturalized citizen?      
occupationDay laborer (stone quarry) Knitter (Stocking Fty)Knitter (Stocking Fty)Day laborer (Stone quarry) 
# months not employed5 005 
# months in school      
can readyesnoyesyesyes 
can writeyes [?]noyesyesyes 
speaks Englishyesyesyesyesyes 
owned/rentedR     
free or mortgaged      
farm/houseH     
# of farm schedule      

index to compiled service records

[index to compiled service records of volunteer Union soldiers who served in organizations from the state of Pennsylvania]
[transcribed 19 January 2015, from Fold3]


Miller William B.
Co. C, 91 Pennsylvania Inf.
Pvt | Pvt.
See also [blank]

GENERAL INDEX CARD.

widow's pension certificate file

[widow's pension certificate file, National Archives and Records Administration, record group 15, widow's certificate 36,138, Eliza Jane Jones widow of William B Miller]
[abstracted October 2012, from 66 pages on Fold3]
27 Aug 1861
William B Miller was enrolled (p.24)
26 Dec 1863
enrolled and mustered in at Bealton VA as private (p.4)
veteran 24 Dec 1863 (p.24)
11 Jan 1864
married Eliza Jane (p.3)
no children surviving when she applied for a pension (p.3)
8-9 June 1864
he was treated for diarrhea and returned to duty (p.24)
20 June 1864
died in hospital of wounds received in action on 18 June 1864 (pp.4)
reported died 20 June 1864 near Petersburg VA Division Hospital from the effects of wounds received in action, by regimental Surgeon W G Keir (p.13)
declaration claims death 19 June 1864 (p.3)
died 18 June 1864, killed in action (p.24)
"Wounded Face M.B. recvd [??] at the battle of Petersburg" (p.24)
[30 July 1864]
Eliza Jane Miller widow of William B Miller applied for a pension under the act of 14 July 1862 (p.3)
post office address: 402 Pierce St, Philadelphia PA (p.3)
attorney Geo W Ford 241 Dock St Philadelphia (p.11)
application 59,315 (p.4)
accepted 12 Dec 1864, $8 per month retroactive to 20 June 1864, certificate 36,138 dated 20 Dec 1864 (pp.3, 11, 57)
1 Oct 1864
the Pension Office sent circular 16 to the Adjutant General's office (p.10)
6 Oct 1864
the Adjutant General's office sent the pension office the above-summarized information (p.4; see p.5 for the request (dated 1 Oct), 9)
25 Nov 1864
the Pension Office sent circular 14 to the Surgeon General's record (p.10)
12 Dec 1864
the Surgeon General's office returned circular 14 to the Pension Office, with evidence (pp.10, 13)
27 [illegible] 1879
"to P.M. + Jno. Wood as above" [?] (p.12)
a prior note, with the date cut off, says something about "PM. Conshocken Pa" "Jno Wood" (p.12)
8 March 1879
Eliza Jane Miller gave sworn testimony to the special examiner M E Jenks (pp.33-34)
she was 33 years old, living at Conshohocken, Montgomery County, PA, receiving a pension (certificate 36,138) (p.33)
she had not remarried since Miller's death (p.33)
re her alleged remarriage to Joseph Daniel Koken (known as John Cogan): she started living and cohabiting with him about 1867, and 'lived with him as his wife continuously to about February 1873 when he was killed by an explosion at Woods Iron Mill' (p.33)
she had children by John Cogan, and had twins since he died (p.33)
she 'never openly acknowledged him to be her husband in his life time but after his death she did receive benefits from the Woods Brothers for a year or more as his widow' (p.33)
she first lived with him at Norristown, near the glass works for 2 or 3 years, then moved to her current location (p.33)
now has a boarder named Pollock, to whom she is not married (p.33)
8 March 1879
Mary Jones gave sworn testimony to the special examiner M E Jenks (pp.35-36)
59 years old, living at Conshohocken, mother of Eliza Jane Miller (p.35)
Eliza Jane Miller and Joseph Danie Koken started to live together about 1867 or 1868, then moved to Conshohocken and Koken was killed by an explosion at Woods Brothers Iron Mill (p.35)
Eliza Jane Miller never acknowledged being married, but they did live together as husband and wife, and she took his name (Koken) (p.35)
she assumed that they were married. Miller did receive benefits from Wood Brothers as his widow. some neighbours did adress her as Mrs Koken, others called her Mrs Miller; she did tell people Kokan was not the right name (p.35)
had two children since Kokan died, had two children by him (p.35)
8 March 1879
Emma Jones gave sworn testimony to the special examiner M E Jenks (pp.37-38)
33 years old, living in Conshohocken, sister-in-law of Eliza Jane Miller (p.37)
Miller and Kokan became acquainted in Norristown about 10 years ago, 'they used to keep company together in affiant's house, after a few months they went to live together as husband and wife' and continued until his death in February 1873 (p.37)
neither of them acknowledged being married, but she referred to him as 'her man' and he her as 'his woman' (p.37)
she asked if they were married, and they neither denied nor acknowledged it (p.37)
they cohabited continuously as husband and wife from about 1868 to 1873, and they had two children (p.37)
Miller received benefits of $5.00 per month from the Woods Brothers as Kokan's widow (p.37)
she lives with someone named 'Pollock' but is not his wife (p.37)
8 March 1879
George W Jones gave sworn testimony to the special examiner M E Jenks (pp.39-40)
32 years old, living in Conshohocken, sister of Eliza Jane Miller (p.39)
he never believed Eliza was legally married to Joseph Daniel Kokan (p.39)
they did live continuously as husband and wife before Kokan's death in 1873 (p.39)
they had two children (p.39)
he never asked whether they were married, and neither of them acknowledged being married (p.39)
she received benefits from Woods Brothers after Kokan's death as his widow (p.39)
8 March 1879
George W Woods gave sworn testimony to the special examiner M E Jenks (pp.41-42)
he doesn't know whether Miller and Kokan were married, but he does know that they lived and cohabited together, and they had two children (p.41)
Cogan was killed by an explosion about 4 February 1873, and she did receive benefits from Wood Brothers as his widow (p.41)
Wood Brothers cancelled their contribution because it was reported that she had married someone named 'Polok' (p.41)
some families of men killed in the explosion sued Wood Brothers, but Eliza Cogan 'made an amicable settlement, and was supported by the said firm until her reported remarriage' (p.41)
8 March 1879
Mary M Tereman gave sworn testimony to special examiner M E Jenks (pp.43-44)
34 years old, living at Conshohocken (p.43)
became acquainted with Eliza Jane Miller in Norristown about two years ago, when she lived near her and her 'reputed husband' Kokan, and attended her at the birth of her first child (p.43)
Miller was living with Kokan as his wife, assumed his name, they lived as other married people, she never acknowledged the marriage, 'she heard the question of their marriage discussed, that her opinion was then and is now they were married' (p.43)
they moved to Conshohocken, and Kokan was killed by an explosion, and she doesn't know anything about benefits, and knows very little about her since Kokan's death (p.43)
8 March 1879
Edmund D Nuss gave sworn testimony to special examiner M E Jenks (pp.45-46)
51 years old, living in Conshohocken (p.45)
Miller and Kokan lived in Conshohocken as husband and wife (p.45)
8 March 1879
Lydia Hastin gave sworn testimony to special examiner M E Jenks (pp.47-8)
lived at No 9 Norris St, Norristown, PA (p.47)
she knew Eliza Jane Kokan then reputed wife of Joseph D Kokan about 10 years ago in Norristown, where they lived as husband and wife etc. (p.47)
8 March 1879
Elizabeth F Young gave sworn testimony to special examiner M E Jenks (pp.49-50)
72 years old, living at Penn Street, Norristown, PA (p.49)
she's inclined to believe that Miller and Kokan were never married, but they began to live together, in Norristown, about 12 years ago, lived their 4-5 years, and then moved to Conshohocken (p.49)
they lived as married people, she responded when addressed as 'Kokan', and had several children (p.49)
one of their children died, and after the funeral Kokan remarked to her (Young) that they might get married, 'the death of the child was a judgement on him because he was not married to the woman he was living with as his wife, that he did not think they could raise any children if they did not get married' (p.49)
they had several children, and she knows they buried two while living in Norristown (p.49)
'any stranger however would naturally suppose they were married' (p.49)
Amanda Magee declared her mother's above statement is true of her own personal knowledge (p.49)
8 March 1879
Kate Allshow gave sworn testimony to special examiner M E Jenks (pp.51-52)
50 years old, living at Airy [?] St, Norristown (p.51)
Kokan and Eliza Jane began living together in Norristown more than 13 years ago etc. (p.51)
Eliza Jane has two children by Kokan now living, and one died before they moved to Conshohockan (p.51)
she has been 'credibly informed that when Kokan was on his death bed he remarked he thought the accident was a judgement on him because he had been living with a woman so long without being lawfully married to her' (p.51)
Kate Adams declared her mother's above statement was true of her own knowledge (p.51)
[probably about 8 March 1879
Esq Simons knows nothing about the merits of the case (p.53)
he did not know anything about Kokan and Miller's being married, and heard the question discussed only recently; he referred Jenks to a Mr Tracy, who provided no more information (p.53)
the only available evidence about the marriage of Kokan and Miller is summarize above; no one seems to think she is married to Polk/Pollock 'her present man' (p.53)
9 March 1879
special examiner M E Jenks sent the above-summarized evidence to the Pension Bureau (p.55)
20 Mar 1879
based on the Special Examiner's report (received 11 Mar 1879), the Chief of the Widows Division recommended that Eliza Jane Miller be dropped from the pension rolls because of remarriage (p.32)
25 March 1879
"R + A to drop Penr informed" (p.12)
31 March 1879
Eliza Jane Miller dropped from the pension rolls because she had remarried (p.7)
last paid at $8 to 4 March 1879 (p.7)
instruction received from 25 Mar 1879 (p.12)
7 Apr 1879
Edward Schall, of Norristown PA (post office address Conshohocken PA), wrote to the pension office with evidence that Eliza Jane Miller had not remarried (p.18)
James Robinson and Margaret Shade, of Conshohocken Montgomery County PA, swore that Eliza Jane Miller had not remarried (received 10 Apr 1879) (p.20)
22 May 1879
the Pension Office sent a letter 'To claimant as per endorsement. Baxter' (p.58)
22 May 1879
the Pension Office replied to Edward Schall that 'the evidence recently filed is not deemed sufficient to justify a reconsideration of the action of dropping her name from the pension rolls upon the ground of remarriage' (p.19)
9 June 1879
15 Conshocken citizens swore that Eliza Jane Miller had not remarried (received 9 June 1879) (p.22)
8 Aug 1879
the Pension Office informed Eliza Jane Miller that they were adhering to their action of dropping her (p.58)
7 Jan 1882
the Pension Office [sent a letter to?] the claimant [giving] the reason for dropping her, and adhering to that decision (p.58)
12 Feb 1891
the Pension Bureau sent a letter to James Miller, 510 Cantrull St, reporting that Mrs Eliz Jane Miller received a pension through March 1879, when she was dropped as having been remarried (p.62)
9 Mar 1891
Thomas Johnson, 50 years old, living at 1715 Danton St Philadelphia, and Andrew Laird [?], 54, 110 Mifflin St Philadelphia, testified on behalf of James Miller's pension application (p.64)
James Miller and Elizabeth Miller lived as husband and wife from 1855 until her death [date not stated], and their marriage was accepted and never doubted (p.64)
10 Mar 1891
James Miller, 75, 510 Cantrull St, Philadelphia PA, applied for a pension, application 506,629, under the act of 27 June 1890 (pp.16, 65; see also p.56, 59)
James Miller married to William Miller's mother on 15 June 1840 at Philadelphia by Rev Mr Elliott (p.65)
William Miller's mother died on 29 April 1883 at Philadelphia (p.65)
attorney Joseph S Ford + Co, Philadelphia PA (pp.16, 59, 65)
witnesses Thomas Johnson (1714 Danton St Philadelphia), Andrew Laird (110 Mifflin St Philadelphia) (p.66)
dated 9 Mar 1891 (p.65)
the application was rejected on 14 Feb 1894, because Miller 'left a widow at his death who was pensioned under Cft no 36,138' (pp.16, 17, 59)
8 Dec 1892
the Record Division reported that widow's certificate 36,138 was the only claim based on William Miller's service; no mother's claim had been filed (p.61)
1 March 1894
the Pension Office sent a letter to the attorney and client explaining the date and reason for rejecting the father's claim for pension (p.60)
28 Feb 1898
Eliza Jane Miller applied to be restored to the pension roll (p.26; see pp.28-29 for a cover letter from her attorney; see also p.56)
she was 53 years old, residence 516 Spring Mill Avenue, Conshohocken (p.26)
last paid through 4 March 1880 (p.26)
since 1880 lived in the Borough of Conshohocken, Montgomery County, PA (p.26)
she explained her not claiming the pension in this way: 'I became housekeeper for a person whom I expected to become married to but the nuptials never were consummated and I have remained the widow of William B. Miller, dec'd' (p.26)
attorney: Ephraim Spacker, Norristown PA (p.26)
witnesses: Calvin W Rigg, Bridget E Shunk (pp.26-27)
dated 25 Feb 1898
13 Feb 1894
[something about the father's application for pension occurred] (p.58)
7 Apr 1898
the Pension Bureau requested more information about the military and medical history of Miller from the War Department's Record and pension office (p.24)
the Record and Pension Office replied with the above summarized information (p.24)
the Pension Bureau received the reply on 11 April 1898 (p.24; see also p.56)
22 May 1898
Eliza Miller's application for restoration of pension was rejected because a special examiner found in 1867 that she lived with Joseph D Koken and was recognized as his wife (pp.30, 31, 58)

'The Conshohocken disaster'

['The Conshohocken disaster', Philadelphia Inquirer Wednesday 5 February 1873, page 2]
[transcribed 20 October 2012, from GenealogyBank]

THE CONSHOHOCKEN DISASTER
The Rolling Mill Boiler Explosion
SCENE OF THE TERRIBLE OCCURRENCE
Further Deaths Among the Victims
INQUEST BY THE CORONER YESTERDAY
The Boiler Declared to Have Been Weak

The rolling mill of J. Wood & Bro., just below the railroad siding at Conshohocken, yesterday morning presented a scene painfully contrasting with that presented on the previous morning, when hearty men assembled there to perform their daily toil, little dreaming that, before the sun would go down on the hive of industry within which they wrought, an appalling disaster and accompanying death would visit them. An account of the explosion of the boiler, and a partial list of the killed and wounded, were published in our columns yesterday. One of our reporters yesterday morning paid

A Visit to the Scene

Of the previous day's horror. The works at which the explosion took place are on the west side of the Reading Railroad Company's track, and just below the railroad bridge. The buildings covered a space of 100 feet by about 175 feet. About one-half of the works are destroyed by the accident, the upper end being a chaotic ruin, in which sections of the roof of the destroyed building, bricks, pieces of iron plates, twisted rods, bent bolts, and debris generally, lay in one confused mass. There were in the mill seven boilers, each being separate and distinct. The one that burst was at the northern end of the building, and its course was directly west across the canal.

The Exploded Boiler

Was eighteen feet long, and has been in use in the mill for twenty years. Upon bursting it raised from its bed, and shot across the canal like an immense projectile forced from a cannon. The boiler went, end first, at about the same height from the ground that it was when it started, until it reached the building on the other side of the canal known as the Albion Print Works. The irresistible mass struck the girder over an arched doorway in the building, and also grazed the wall to the right of the doorway, shattering the girder, and tearing away the wall. The flying boiler now brought up against a large cylindrical vessel called a kiers, and, in doing so, put an end to two human lives under horribly

Shocking Circumstances.

The "kiers" is made like a boiler, of half-inch boiler iron, strongly riveted, and stands about 8 feet in height and about 6 feet in diameter. This apparatus is used for steaming muslin, and the only mode of ingress or egress is a small manhole in the top of the contrivance. In this kiers were two lads, George Smith and James McNulty, who were arranging the pieces of muslin within the receptacle and tramping them down so that the steam and water, which were to be subsequently let in, would not mix up and entangle the material. The two poor little fellows were tramping away when the end of the flying boiler struck the side of the kiers, the strong iron in which gave way before the shock like wetted paper. Both lads were instantly killed, George Smith being actually cut in two. These little victims, although blessed with a more painless death than that which the others suffered, were the recipients of much more of the expressed sympathy of visitors to the spot than was bestowed on the other victims, owing probably to the condition they were in, penned up within one boiler when another put an end to their young lives.

Crowd of Visitors

Flocked to the scene during the entire day. Each train arriving from stations both north and south brought numbers of persons, some wearing an anxious look, relatives, perhaps, of men dead or wounded; others wearing expressions indicative of a disposition merely to "see the sight." Many manifested a desire to see the

Wounded and Dead,

But, as the unfortunates were taken to their residences, or former residences, instead of to any one place, the idle curiosity of thoughtless people was not gratified. The wounded, as far as could be learned are the following:--Badly injured, James Hanns, John O'Mahony, Brinton Woodward, James Loughery and Robert Geary, the latter being reported as dying last evening at half-past seven. Slightly wounded, John Logan, Charles Dean, William Simpson, John Leary, James Clark, and John Sheaff. The following is the list of the dead:--

John Cogan, leaves wife and two children.

William Barrett, leaves wife and three children.

John Wall, single.

Hugh O'Donnel, wife and child.

Henry Hummell, Jr., single.

William Hanny, single.

William Carroll, single.

George Smith, single.

Arthur McAnulty, lad.

James Slatterly, wife and four children.

William Kelly, single.

The two last named died yesterday afternoon, and it is expected that of the other men who are injured several of them cannot recover.

Coroner Strahley, of Norristown, arrived in Conshohocken yesterday morning and impanneled a jury to hold an

Inquest in the Case.

The jury was composed of the following gentlemen:--Barnet H. West, superintendent Norris Works; Frederick Stout, foreman Norris Works; Robert Cascaden, foreman boiler shop Norris Works; John Eynon, foreman Hooven's blast furnace; Joseph Kenworthy, machinist, and D. F. Quillman, Coroner's clerk.

Having visited the houses in which each of the bodies lay, the jury returned to a rear room in the office of the Mill Works and held an inquest in the case.

The Testimony

Was not very voluminous.

John Welsh testified that he is a boiler maker; last week repaired the boiler that exploded; considered the boiler in good and safe condition when he left it.

John Mellon, a laborer in the mill, testified that he made a fire under the boiler about two o'clock on the day it exploded; had then tried the safety valve, and did not think it could have been stuck.

Samuel McCarter, machinist, testified that he had built the boiler for J. Wood & Brother; the material entering into the construction of the boiler was first-class and of best quality; witness thought that the flue collapsed and the shell tore apart at the same time.

Then followed

The Engineer's Statement.

The engineer, James Kenworthy, being sworn, testified that he had observed the fireman firing up at about two o'clock in the afternoon; the blast was put on the furnace at half-past two, another man having succeeded the first fireman; the explosion occurred at twenty minutes past four, the blast having been on the furnace until that time; there was no unusual forcing of the fires; witness had in the meantime tried the gauge cock and water gauge; usually carry about from eighty to eighty-five pounds on a gauge; had about fifty pounds on about ten minutes before the explosion; never knew the safety valve to stick; carried the weight on the lever of the safety valve at about eighty five pounds, at which pressure the boiler would blow off; noticed nothing unusual about the boiler; there had been no water in the boiler until the day on which the explosion took place; he pumped the water into the boiler right out of the river; there was no water in the boiler until half past twelve on the day of the explosion; it generally took about three and a half hours to generate steam enough to run; the man who took the place of the one that fired up in the first place is among the killed; the boiler was nearly full of water; it blowed water from the top gauge cock; never was in the habit of hanging any weights on the safety valve lever.

In answer to a question of a juryman, the engineer said that to the best of his knowledge there was not more than 55 or 60 pounds of steam pressure when the boiler exploded.

Testimony of an Expert.

William T. Bate, boilermaker, testified that he is practical boilermaker. Mr. Bate then went over with Coroner Strahley to examine the boiler. Upon returning, Mr. Bate testified that he had carefully examined the boiler as it lay where it was thrown by the explosion. The iron in the boiler is of medium quality, "C H No. 1." Had measured the thickness of the flue. In some places he found it 3-16ths full, and in other places 3-16th scant. Witness did not think the plates thinned any in the explosion. "C H No. 1" is a commercial term for ordinary iron made of 'charcoal bloom-shell.' He was of the opinion that the flue collapsed first, and threw the whole strain on the boiler; believed the flue parted, and thus caused the head to blow out.

Mr. Bates, having again measured the boiler, testified that he found the iron in the bottom of the shell a scant quarter of an inch. Going on the supposition that the tubes collapsed, he would not exactly say that the shell was too thin to still stand the strain, but he "wouldn't like to work much around a boiler of that thickness." The flues, he further testified, were not thick enough to stand 85 pounds pressure. If he had been ordered to repair that boiler he would, if ordered to examine the flues, have given notice to take the flues out. In response to the question of a juryman Mr. Bates said that the engineer's statement that he (the eingeer) had raised 55 pounds in an hour and three-quarters was, in his opinion, all right. The engineer's opinion, that there was not more than 65 pounds of steam on when the boiler burst, Mr. Bates thought quite reasonable, but he believed the flues of the boiler would collapse under that pressure.

Witness, in answer to the interrogation as to how much a boiler will weaken by use in twenty years, said that if the iron is not burned it will not weaken any, but if the iron is burned it is not much stronger than cast iron. His impression was that when a boiler had been that long in use it was pretty nearly time to lay it aside. Witness, in conclusion, thought that to be sure, the iron in a boiler designed to resist eighty pounds pressure ought to be about five-eighths thick.

Mr. John Wood, Jr., being sworn, testified that he is a boiler-maker and machinist; had examined the boiler; consider that the iron composing the exploded boiler was better than C. H. No. 1 iron; at the time of the building of the boiler, twenty years ago there was no C. H. No. 1 iron made; believed the boiler fully capable of carrying eighty or eighty-five pounds of steam.

The Verdict.

The testimony now concluded, and the jury commenced to deliberate. At about seven o'clock last evening they agreed upon the following verdict:--

"That the deceased (names mentioned) came to their deaths by the explosion of a boiler in the rolling mill of J. Wood & Brother, in the above borough (Conshohocken), and, in the opinion of the jury, said boiler had by long and continued use become, in certain parts, inadequate to carry the required pressure, viz., eighty pounds."

Opinion of an Expert.

Mr. W. Barnet Le Van, of this city, who examined the exploded boiler yesterday, states that the shell of the boiler is 54 inches in diameter, and 18 feet long; two flues, 18 inches in diameter and 18 feet long.

The shell was originally No. 4 iron, but at the weakest point is now three-sixteenths of an inch full, and the iron he found crystallized by constant expansion and contraction; the flues were still more deteriorated. The iron of the flues also seems to have been No. 4 iron, but is now, at the point ruptured, but three-sixteenths. The stop valve, connecting the boiler with the line of steam pipe to the engine, was closed at the time of the accident, and the steam gauge showed fifty-three pounds per square inch (so stated by the engineer). This, he says, is, no doubt, correct, as it is evident that the flues collapsed from external pressure, as they are flattened together as though they were passed through a pair of rollers. The working pressure at the mill was eighty pounds per square inch, and the valve was kept closed until this pressure was obtained, the boiler being just repaired and gotten underway. The above-sized flues, to withstand eighty pounds, should not have been, in the opinion of Mr. Le Van, less than five-sixteenths of an inch in thickness.

The safety valve was in good condition, and when found was open and in working order. Also, the stop valve.

death notice, mother

[death notice, Philadelphia Inquirer, Thursday 3 May 1883, page 4, Eliza Miller]
[transcribed 20 October 2012, from GenealogyBank]

MILLER.--On the 29th ult, ELIZA MILLER, wife of James Miller, aged seventy-nine years.

The relatives and friends of the family are respectfully invited to attend the funeral this (Thursday) afternoon, at 1 o'clock, from the residence of her daughter, Adelia Lowrey, No. 510 Cantrell street. To proceed to Bethel M. E. Church for service. Interment at Philadelphia Cemetery.

National Cemetery interment control card

[US National Cemetery interment control cards, 1928-1962]
[transcribed 21 October 2012, from Ancestry]

Interment in the City Point,Va. National Cemetery
NAME Miller,W.B.
RANK Pvt
COMPANY C
REGIMENT 91 Pa Inf
DATE OF DEATH June 20 1864
DATE OF INTERMENT [blank]
GRAVE MARK Grave No. 2576
REMARKS Originally buried-City Point, Va.

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