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Guide to the Harry And Argenta Miller Papers ; Miller (Harry and Argenta) Papers

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Guide to the Harry And Argenta Miller Papers 1898-1969

Sponsor: Funding for encoding this finding aid was provided through a grant awarded by the National Endowment for the Humanities.


Overview of the Collection

Title: Papers
Creator: Harry And Argenta Miller
Dates: 1898-1969
Quantity: 2 c.f.
Abstract:Personal correspondence, including fifteen letters from Argenta Miller's brother Orland Scott, author of Pioneer Days on the Shadowy St. Joe; financial records, legal documents relating to land purchases, and photographs of family and friends.
Identification: MG062
Language: English
Repository: University of Idaho Library Special Collections and Archives
Moscow, ID 83844-2351

Arrangement and Description

The personal correspondence was arranged by year only, with separate folders created for special events; in October 1955 Argenta Miller fell and broke her hip and the cards she received are in a separate folder. Likewise the sympathy cards she received when Harry died in 1964 are separate from the rest of the 1964 correspondence. Separate folders at the end of the correspondence file contain Christmas cards and picture postcards. Christmas cards containing family portraits are in this series.The financial material was sorted by type and the contents of each folder are arranged chronologically. The same system was used for the legal material.Many of the photographs were tied together in bunches with broad identifications, e.g., "Friends and unidentified folk, not relatives." These groups were kept together in folders and the identifiers modified and used as folder headings. Many of the pictures were not identified, and the majority were undated.All greeting cards and post cards without messages were discarded as were religious tracts, souvenir booklets of California and Florida, bank statements, canceled checks, invoices, and receipts. The exception to these last items are the 1905-1926 checks for over $100.00, checks made out to the Scott family or banks, and receipts for payments on bank notes, land purchases, and taxes, all of which were retained with other financial material. In all, about 1 c.f. of material was removed.

Scope and Content

The papers of Harry and Argenta Miller span the years 1898 to 1969, with the bulk of the material covering the years 1930 to 1965.

The papers include personal correspondence, Christmas and other greeting cards, picture postcards, property tax receipts, promissory notes, mortgage and lease agreements, the will of Harry Miller, Scott family records and the 1955 correspondence of Amy Belle Scott, Argenta Miller's diary and bird watching notebook plus her reminiscences of moving to the St. Joe Valley, two autograph books, one from 1894-96 with poems written by her school friends, the other the guest book from the Miller's 60th wedding anniversary party, funeral memorial books for Amy Belle Scott and Harry Miller, a poem entitled "The Bachelors of St. Joe," and a large collection of photographs, including some tintypes, of Scott and Miller family and friends, and the descendants of Harry and Argenta.

The earliest letter is from Harry (then known as Hezekiah) to Argenta prior to their marriage. The 15 letters of Orland Scott, author of Pioneer Days on the Shadowy St. Joe, to his sister Argenta, which were written between 1955 and 1969, contain many reminiscences of their childhood.

The Amy Belle Scott papers include her 1915 divorce degree, family birth records, stock certificates, and some 1955 correspondence, including one letter from her brother Orland.

Also included with the game licenses and membership cards in folder 38 are a newspaper clipping and pamphlet dealing with Argenta's fractured hip, a list of boats that have sailed the St. Joe River, and a booklet "The Mann's Chapel Country" the story of a pioneer church near the town where Harry Miller grew up.


Administrative/Biographical History

Harry (born Hezekiah) Miller was born September 26, 1868, in Alvin, Illinois, the fourth of five children, and the only son of Ambrose and Mary (Ballah) Miller. At the age of 19 he migrated first to Aberdeen, Washington, then to Olympia where he was employed carrying mail on horseback between Olympia and Montesano. Later he came to the Palouse country where he worked on a farm near Colfax until coming to the St. Joe Valley in 1891. In 1898 he married Argenta Scott and the couple moved to Spokane where he worked in the Phoenix Sawmill. In 1903 they returned, with their small daughter, to the St. Joe Valley where they lived for 60 years on a 230 acre ranch. In 1955 infirmities of age forced them to sell the ranch and move into St. Maries where he died on January 22, 1964.

Ada Argenta (Scott) Miller was born October 2, 1878 in Missouri, the fifth of seven children of Francis (Frank) Gale and Amy Jane (Hicks) Scott. When she was three the family traveled first by rail to San Francisco, then by boat to Portland, and finally by wagon to Crescent, near Cheney, Washington. Her father worked at several jobs in the area, then in 1885 he moved the family to the St. Joe Valley where he acquired extensive land holdings. He also built the first log schoolhouse which was located on the bank of the St. Maries River near the junction with the St. Joe. After graduating from this school Argenta obtained a teachers certificate and taught for a time in Harrison, Idaho. On October 12, 1898 she married Harry Miller; they had one daughter. Harry's rheumatism and her lameness as the result of a broken hip in 1955 caused them to sell their ranch on the St. Joe in 1959 and move into St. Maries where she died in 1969.


Subjects

This collection is indexed under the following headings in the online catalog. Researchers desiring materials about related topics, persons, or places should search the catalog using these headings.

Idaho
Pioneers

Miller, Argenta--Archives.
Miller, Harry, 1868-1964--Archives.
Scott, Orland A.

Saint Joe River Valley (Idaho) -- History -- Sources

Pioneer Days on the Shadowy St. Joe

Administrative Information

Source

The papers of Harry and Argenta Miller were donated to the University of Idaho Library on March 16, 1970, by their granddaughter Lois (Mrs. Bert) Scholz of Colfax, Washington.


Detailed Description of the Collection

Series I. Correspondence 1898-1969
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1/1-141/1-14Letters and greeting cards 1898-1969 385 items
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1/15-161/15-16Christmas Cards 1930-1968 98 items
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1/171/17Picture postcards 1910-1965 48 items
Series II. Financial Records 1903-1966
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1/181/18Road Poll Tax 1908-1910 3 items
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1/19-201/19-20Property Taxes 1921-1961 84 items
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1/211/21Income Tax Return 1959 1 item
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1/221/22Hay Sale Records Book 1936-1937 3 items
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1/231/23Promissory Notes 1903-1934 59 items
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1/241/24Bank Savings pass books 1910-1966 6 items
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1/251/25Canceled checks 1906-1926 103 items
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1/261/26Receipts 1905-1925 14 items
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1/271/27Medical bills for broken hip 1955-1956 13 items
Series III. Legal Items 1903-1960
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1/281/28Property Agreements (mortgages, leases) 1903-1956 16 items
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1/291/29Release & Option for crop damage 1942-1949 2 items
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1/301/30Sale of Ranch 1959-1960 8 items
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1/311/31Will of Harry Miller & Burial Plot Deed 1934-1953 3 items
Series IV. Other Papers 1894-1964
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1/32-331/32-33Amy Belle Scott papers & letters 1915-1955 24 items
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1/341/34Argenta Scott's memoirs & diary 1954-1959 3 items
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1/351/35Harry Miller's family birth records 2 items
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1/361/36Autograph books 1894-1896; 1958 2 items
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2/372/37Insurance policies and receipts 1935-1960 3 items
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2/382/38Game licenses, membership cards and other papers 1913-1963 17 items
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2/392/39Funeral memorial books 1955-1964 5 items
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2/402/40Poem, "The Bachelors of St. Joe" undated 1 item
Series V. Photographs ca. 1880-1964
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2/412/41Francis Gale & Amy Jane (Hicks) Scott undated 4 items
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2/422/42Harry & Argenta (Scott) Miller 1898-1964 15 items
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2/432/43Ardis (Miller) Cook 1906-1925 12 items
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2/442/44Ardis Cook and her family 1933-1946 35 items
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2/452/45Lois (Cook) Sholz and her family 1947-1958 3 items
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2/462/46Doris (Cook) Polli 1950-1956 7 items
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2/472/47Harry Cook ca. 1946 1 item
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2/482/48Phillip Cook and his family 193?-1957 13 items
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2/492/49Harry & Argenta Miller and family groups 1945-1961 13 items
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2/502/50Relatives of the Millers 1945-1958 17 items
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2/512/51Scott family relations ca. 1900 3 items
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2/522/52Amy Belle Scott undated 3 items
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2/532/53Orland Scott and Family undated 6 items
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2/542/54Frank Elmer Scott and Family 18-?-1958 26 items
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2/552/55Harry Miller's Relatives ca. 1880 20 items
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2/562/56Harry Miller's Friends ca. 1880 4 items
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2/572/57Hicks family relations undated 14 items
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2/582/58Scott and Hicks family & friends, (tintypes) undated 34 items
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2/592/59Miller's Ranch house on St. Joe ca. 1950 9 items
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2/602/60Stacking hay on Miller farm ca. 1910-1950 4 items
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2/612/61Harry & Argenta's neighbors 1885-1930 26 items
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2/622/62Scenic views of the St. Joe area ca. 1910-1940 15 items
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2/632/63Birthday party for Mrs. Emma Ross 1958 13 items
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2/642/64Ferrell Women's Club ca. 1930 1 item
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2/652/65Miller relative's Florida scrapbook & photos 1925 8 items
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2/662/66Unidentified children undated 25 items
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2/672/67Unidentified individuals undated 7 items
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2/682/68Unidentified family groups undated 22 items
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2/692/69Unidentified farm scenes undated 9 items

Profile Description

Creation: Encoded by ArchProteus2003
Language: Finding aid is in English

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