Tag Archives: Harriet Curbow

Elijah Spencer Miller – Husband of Harriet Curbow

Harriet’s husband, Elijah Spencer Miller, was born in Mississippi in about 1849.  He was the oldest son of James Turner and Rebecca Anderson Miller.   Elijah’s grandfather, Alfred W. Miller and his father, James, were both land/slave owners in Mississippi prior to the Civil War.  Elijah’s father, James Turner Miller, was a 3rd Sgt. during the Civil War serving with the Texas Militia out of McLennan County, Texas.  According to the Miller family oral history, Elijah’s father, James Turner Miller, was a wealthy man – owning cotton gins and a large property east of Waco, Texas on the Tehuacana Creek which he bought with gold.  Elijah’s mother (Rebecca) died in childbirth while Elijah was a young teen.  His father remarried, and the name of his second wife was Catherine Young.  The family oral history goes on to state that Elijah’s father was murdered by cattle rustlers as he returned home from Waco on a supply trip.  

After Harriet’s death, which is presumed to have occurred prior to December of 1904, Elijah Spencer Miller can be found in Springer, Pickens County, Indian Territory (Chickasaw Nation) (present day Carter County, Oklahoma), where he has remarried.  His new wife is Emily Rosa Mosbey Long (1874-1931) whom he married on 4 Dec, 1904.  Emily was the widow of H. C. Long and she had two sons by him – Walter L. Long and Floyd Daniel Long. 

Emily Rosa Mosbey Long Miller

It appears that Rosey Miller received a widow’s pension for her husband’s service in the civil war.  It is unclear if the pension was for the service of H. C. Long or for Elijah Spencer Miller.  I have been unable to locate service records for either of them.  If the pension is for Elijah’s service, it is believed that he must have served out of Texas – because he was in McLennan County by the age of 11.  The following documents were received from Tony Crow of Harrah, Oklahoma – a distant Miller descendant. 

Letter dated September 27, 1928 from Office of Judge of County Court, Caddo County, Anadarko, Oklahoma to Mrs. Rosey Miller of Cyril, Oklahoma:  Dear Madam:  Your application for widow’s pension is not executed properly.  The birth date and name of your child not given and your statement as to income and property is not satisfactory.  I am returning the same to you for correction.  Yours very truly, R. L. Lawrence, Judge.

Undated letter to Judge of County Court, Caddo County, Anadarko, Oklahoma from Mrs. Rosey Miller:  Dear Sir – I received the letter and taken it to the note republic (notary public).  He said I would have to go and see you.  I am 53 years old the 18th of this last August.  I am crippled up with the rheumatism so I can’t get out pick cotton.  I am so heavy on my feet.  I have no income – me and little girl are living with my son-in-law and he is working on the railroad.  Cannot make enough to clothe me.  This is the reason I need a pension.  If you want me to come let me know at once.  Will you please grant me a pension?  Yours truly Mrs. Rosey Miller.

Letter dated February 18, 1930 from County Judge to Mrs. Rosey Miller, Cyril, Oklahoma:  Dear Madam:  Information has been brought to this office that your daughter, Hattie Miller, age twelve years, is not attending school.  I have held you on the widow’s pension list since in 1929 and one of the provisions of the widow’s pension law is that the children shall attend school.  If there is any reason for this child remaining out of school, inform me at once to save your widow’s pension from being cut off.  Yours very truly, County Judge.

Annual Report of Rosie Miller to County Judge dated 4 Sept. 1928:  States that she has not remarried; has one minor daughter, Hattie Miller, age 13.  States – I am disabled to do anything.  Sure do need the pension.  Explains that her daughter Hattie cannot got to school because she is picking cotton.  Six individuals sign on Rosie’s behalf stating that she is conducting a home that is morally fit to rear children and that Rosie is a fit person.  These people included several grocers, the Chevrolet dealer and the dry goods store owner.  Additionally, the report listed another six people that were “acquainted with” Rosey – these included her banker, another grocer, her druggist, the filling station owner and the barber.  She further states that she is the widow of Spencer Miller who died on 16 Sept. 1924.  She has one minor child, “one girl,” age 11 who was born Jan 23, 1917 – Hattie Miller.  She owns no real estate or personal property or income.  She states that her rent is $7.00 per month. 

Annual Report of Rosie Miller to County Judge dated 28 Sept. 1929:  She states that she has one minor child, Hattie Miller, age 12, born January 23, 1917.  She has not remarried.  She does not work – she claims to be disabled.  She is living with her son-in-law.  She pays no rent.  She owns no personal property.  Her daughter does not attend school because she is picking cotton.  I am living with my son-in-law.  He is not able to take care of me and my daughter for his wages are only $2.56 cents a day and has to pay $10.00 a month house rent.  He works on the railroad.  My daughter attends school at Cyril when she goes, but she is picking cotton now.  I haven’t got any widow’s pensions for 3 months.

 Elijah and Rosey had the following children:

Cleo H. Miller - Photograph courtesy of Tony Crow

Cleo Hazel Miller was born 12 Jan 1906 in Oklahoma City.  She married Nathaniel Sheridan Murry.  The couple had children:  William Spencer born 1927 and Evelyn Ruth born in 1929.  {Several other children are still living.}  Cleo died in Oklahoma County on 19 Jun 1998.  She is laid to rest with her husband in Arlington Memory Gardens in Oklahoma City.

Lucille Lillian Miller (Lou) was born 28 April 1910 in Oklahoma.  She married John Lothra Crow on 29 April 1926 in Apache, Caddo County, Oklahoma.  The couple had three children:  Joe Lothra; Marian Lillian; and Jewell Lee (1927-1997).  Lou died 11 Jun 1989 in Caddo County, Oklahoma.  She is laid to rest with her husband in Fairview Cemetery, Apache, Caddo County, Oklahoma.

Nellie Argiedell Miller was born in Glenn, Oklahoma on 13 Aug. 1912.  She married first Decater Brumbelow (1904-1996) and they had one daughter – Rachael.  She married second Jack Allen Cisero Baskett (1899-1949) and they had two boys – Jack and Floyd Buddy Allen (1929-1987).  She married third Travis Gideon “Giddy” Northcut.  Nellie died in Lawton, Comanche County, Oklahoma on 14 Oct. 1998.  She is laid to rest in Granfield Memorial Cemetery in Tillman County, Oklahoma. 

Hattie Louisa Miller was born in Oklahoma on 23 January 1917.  On 15 May 1931 she married Andrew Monroe Crow.  The couple had two children:  Martha and Adran (1935-1941).  Hattie died in Apache, Caddo County, Oklahoma on 6 Jun 1986.  She is laid to rest in Fairview Cemetery in Apache.

Elijah Spencer Miller died at the age of 75 on 16 September 1924 in Carter County, Oklahoma.  His burial location is not known to me at this time. 

His widow Emily Rosa Mosbey Miller died in Chickasha, Grady County, Oklahoma on 10 May 1931.  She is laid to rest in Fairview Cemetery in Apache, Caddo County, Oklahoma. 

I would like to connect with any of Elijah’s descendants.  I am particularly interested in knowing where Elijah is laid to rest.  Additionally, I would be interested in learning more about Rosa Mosbey’s background.  Who was her family?  Who was her first husband?   

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Posted by on January 22, 2011 in Miller


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Harriet Curbow Miller

Harriet Curbow was the third daughter born to Tilman Curbow and Elizabeth Box – born sometime in 1852 in Mississippi, probably Itawamba County.  She was often referred to as “Hattie.”   Hattie may have been named after her aunt, Harriet Jane Box.  Harriet can be found in the 1860 and 1870 census with her parents.  On February 9, 1872 Harriet married Elijah Spencer Miller in McLennan County, Texas.  Harriet was 20 years old and Elijah was about 23 at the time of the marriage. 

Harriet Curbow Miller – Photo is courtesy of Tom Hedges

Harriet and Elijah lived in or near Waco, Texas through at least 1885 because Elijah can be found there in various McLennan County tax roll records.  At some point after 1885, Harriet and Elijah apparently moved their family to Hill County, Texas where their youngest daughter was born in Itasca in June of 1892 (according to her grandson).  It should be noted that Harriet’s grandfather William Bolton Box was living in Covington, Hill County, Texas, which is not far from Itasca.  He died there in 1887. 

Harriet and Elijah had seven children:  Frank in 1873; Thomas in 1874; Jesse in 1876; Minnie in 1879; John in 1889; Willie Mae in 1890; and Lou Ida Belle in 1892. 

Sometime after the birth of their last daughter, the Miller family moved to Indian Territory – Chickasaw Nation – present day Carter County, Oklahoma. 

1895 Indian Territory Map

This area is rich in Native American history.  In that regard – the Commission to the Five Civilized Tribes was appointed by President Grover Cleveland in 1893 to negotiate land with the Cherokee, Creek, Choctaw, Chickasaw and Seminole tribes. It is commonly called the Dawes Commission, after its chairman, Henry L. Dawes.  Tribe members were entitled to an allotment of land, in return for abolishing their tribal governments and recognizing Federal laws. In order to receive the land, individual tribal members first had to apply and be deemed eligible by the Commission.  The first application process for enrollment began in 1896, but was declared invalid.  In this 1896 application process appear the applications of:

Elijah E. Miller – Cherokee – Application #2131
Hattie J. Miller – Cherokee – Application #4074

So, because of this invalidation, the Dawes Commission started all over again in 1898.  People had to re-apply in order to be considered, even if they had already applied in 1896.   The resulting lists of those who were accepted as eligible became known as the Dawes Rolls.   Their formal name is the “Final Rolls of the Citizens and Freedmen of the Five Civilized Tribes in Indian Territory”. The Commission accepted applications from 1898 until 1907.  Neither Elijah nor Hattie appear on the Final Rolls.  After speaking with a genealogist at the Oklahoma History Center, she wonders if this could be our Elijah and Harriet.  If they had applied as Cherokees – why would they be living in Chickasaw Nation rather than the Cherokee Nation?   Good point.

Sometime between June of 1892 and December of 1904, Harriet Curbow Miller died.  At this point, I do not know if Harriet died in Texas or in Oklahoma.  Miller descendants claim that Harriet died in Oklahoma and is buried somewhere “around the Carter County, Oklahoma area.”   The news article below from The Daily Ardmoreite which was published on May 7, 1902 has piqued my interest.  The general location seems to fit and the timeframe is correct – but of course, I have no way of knowing if this is our Harriet Curbow:    Nine Lives Swept into Eternity at Foss, Oklahoma; Twenty Houses Washed Away; Inhabitants Left Homeless and Destitute; Searching for Dead; Property Destroyed.  Among the dead were Mrs. Miller and daughter

Harriet’s husband Elijah Miller remarried in December of 1904 and had several more children with his second wife.  It appears that he lived out the rest of his life in Oklahoma. 

I would love to know more about Harriet – and am especially interested in knowing when she died and where she is laid to rest.  If you know anything about her, I would love to hear from you. 

A big thanks to Tom Hedges, Harriet’s great grandson, for giving me such a great start on Harriet’s genealogy. 

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Posted by on January 8, 2011 in Brick Walls, Miller


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