The Early Pioneers of Virginia & West Virginia – Part 2

A Retrospective Series on Ancestral Relations – Celebrating my 50th Post

Subject 2 – Adam Miller/Mueller (1703-1783)

Similar to the last post regarding Morgan Morgan, our next subject, Adam Miller (Mueller), born in 1703 in Schriesheim, Germany, is traditionally recognized as the first permanent settler in the Shenandoah Valley, in Elkton, VA (formerly called “Massanutten” in those early days). This particular subject has a rather unique connection to my Miller family, thus the reason for this post, which is about finding those ancestral connections.

So, back to the beginning…

When I started out doing genealogical research, I was the personification of being “wet behind the ears” and believing the first things I read or saw.  When I began researching my Miller family, I had gotten a book authored by Floyd R. Mason and his wife, Kathryn G. Mason entitled “Matthias Miller and His 17 Children”.  In the back of the book, the author makes a reference to another book he and his wife were working on entitled “Adam Miller and Barbara Koger Family Record of Massenutten, today Elkton, VA”.

Matthias Miller is my 6x great-uncle, brother of my 6x great-grandfather Johannes Miller (1733-1796), both sons of Johan Jacob Mueller.

The author also mentions in the Matthias Miller book that my 7x great-grandfather, Johann Jacob Miller/Mueller (1697-1772) was the son of Johann Peter Mueller and Anna Maria Margaretha Ulrich, and in the blurb regarding Adam Miller and Barbara Koger, indicated that Adam was also a son of Johann Peter Mueller and Anna Maria Margaretha Ulrich. Thus making Jacob and Adam brothers.  At first I though that’s pretty neat, but as time went on, doubts and better research and judgement began to cloud the connection.

Later in my research, through distant Miller cousins, I came to know a gentleman by the name of Myron Miller.  I have to credit Myron for putting me on the path of truth and knowledge about my Miller ancestors!  Myron, having several years on me, and having traveled far and wide, including to the homestead of Jacob Mueller (designated with a memorial stone erected by Leslie A. Miller, Governor of Wyoming, 1933-1939 and another descendant of Jacob’s), had an advantage over me.  Myron had friends and associates in the right places.  One in particular in Germany, which garnered Myron with the following record:

This marriage record clearly shows that my ancestor Johann Jacob Mueller was not the son of Johann Peter Mueller and Anna Maria Margaretha Ulrich, which means that Adam and Jacob were not brothers.

So, does that end my research on the connection to Adam Miller? No…and I’ll tell you why.

I came across the other book that Floyd and Kathryn Mason wrote regarding Adam Miller as I was gathering research and resources for this post.  As I was perusing the book, I came across the surnames Baer and Trout.  Now, where did I see those surnames before?

Of course, in the first Mason book I have, “Matthias Miller and His 17 Children”.

It is well documented that, like many other German settlers before him that lived in Pennsylvania and had a need to see more or were searching for more to the west, Matthias Miller and most of his family removed from Berks County, PA to Timberville, Rockingham Co., VA about 1794.  Elkton, VA (where Adam Miller lived) and Timberville, VA are about 30 miles apart.  By the end of Matthias Miller’s life, he owned approximately 1000 acres, and many of his children had land in their own names as well.

Looking at the children of Matthias Miller (1743-1805), I noticed that the author indicated the two youngest children, Michael Miller (1790-1862) and Mary (Polly) Miller (1792-1856) both married into the Trout family, the Trouts being the apparent descendants of Adam Miller.

Painting of Michael Miller:

Image courtesy of Miller Hall,
Roanoke College Archives
Salem, VA
(Miller Hall of Roanoke College is named for Michael Miller, a founding member)

RECORDS for Elizabeth Trout and George Trout

Marriage records of Rockingham County, Virginia:

Image courtesy of Ancestry©
Image courtesy of Ancestry©
Image courtesy of Ancestry©

A 2nd marriage record for Michael Miller appears in 1859 (Courtesy of FamilySearch©).

The marriage registration is also recorded in 1859 (Courtesy of FamilySearch©).

I found a death record for Mary (Polly) Trout, wife of George Trout in 1856 (Courtesy of FamilySearch©).

Trout Hall of Roanoke College was named for the George Trout family.

For George Trout, husband of Mary (Polly) Miller, I found this:

Image courtesy of Ancestry©
 – from the DAR-Lineage Book of the Charter Members of the DAR-Vol 038

I found a death record for Elizabeth Miller, wife of Michael Miller, died in 1855 (Courtesy of FamilySearch©).

RECORDS for Elizabeth Baer

I found a christening record for Elizabeth Baer, wife of Michael Trout, born in 1752 (Courtesy of FamilySearch©).

RECORDS for Catherine Elizabeth (Miller) Baer

Catherine Elizabeth Miller, mother of Elizabeth (Baer) Trout is the apparent daughter of Adam Miller and Barbara Koger.

I found the Find A Grave record for Catherine Elizabeth Miller, wife of John Baer, died in1816 and buried in the Rader Lutheran Church Cemetery, Timberville, VA…the same cemetery where Matthias Miller and family are buried (Courtesy of FamilySearch©).

Christening Record for Catherine Elizabeth Miller:

Image courtesy of Ancestry©

As you can see, following the paper trail left by your ancestors can sometimes be daunting, but not impossible.  I now believe it’s a pretty far gone conclusion that there is a relationship between the family of Adam Miller and my Miller family.  As I said before, it may not be direct, but it shows you, if you pursue the truth you are looking for, you can very well find it…just keep looking!

Featured Image:

Memorial monument of Adam Miller image courtesy of Jan Hensley (Find A Grave)

Headstone of Matthias Miller image courtesy of Barbara Chittum Hutchens (Find A Grave)

Background image is a map of Virginia described by Capt. John Smith and engraved by William Hole 1606

Sources:

Ancestry©

FamilySearch©

“Adam Miller and Barbara Koger Family Record of Massenutten, today Elkton, VA” by Floyd R. and Kathryn G. Mason, 2000

“Matthias Miller and his 17 Children” by Floyd R. and Kathryn G. Mason, 1996

Special Thanks to:

Myron Miller

Library of Virginia

My wife Cheryl, who continues to love me and support my research, which I could never do without