Santa Cruz County History - People

Old Soldiers: Santa Cruz County Civil War Veterans
by Robert L. Nelson

MILLER, ASHER (1825-1906)

Illinois Roster of Officers and Enlisted Men

Photograph of Asher Miller
Asher Miller
Evergreen Cemetery

Asher Miller Enlisted 1862/08/07 at Rockford Illinois. He was mustered in to Co C 74th IL Infantry as a principal musician. He was transferred from Co K to Field and Staff. He was listed as mustering out at Nashville TN of 1865/06/10. On 1862/08/29 Illinois records also list him as mustering in to Co. B 146 IL Infantry as a Fife Major, and mustering out at Nashville on 1865/07/08.

Adjutant General of Illinois Report on the 74th IL at the Battle of Chattanooga

On November 14, the Regiment received from the ladies of Rockford its new flag, destined to receive its fiery christening eleven days afterward. On the morning of the 25th the Union left, under Sherman, had made several ineffectual assaults on the Confederate right. This was the position of affairs, when at 2:30 P.M., Sheridan's, Baird's and Wood's Divisions of Granger's Corps, then formed some 80 rods (450 yds.) from the enemy skirmishers, received the order to move forward and carry the rebel rifle pits at the foot of the Ridge. In less time than it takes in the telling the rebel rifle pits were carried by our men, and most of their surviving occupants made prisoners. Here the troops paused, breathless, but only for a few minutes, when Generals Wood and Sheridan, on their own motion, as was afterward stated, and without direction from their superior officers, gave the order to storm the ridge. How completely successful that assault was there is little need to say. In that charge the new flag of the Seventy-fourth was borne by Chas. E. Allen, of Company E. He soon fell truck by a minnie, but the colors had hardly dropped from his nerveless grasp before they were seized by Alba Miller, of Company C, who carried them but a short distance, when he, too, was hit and severely wounded, and the falling flag was grasped by Corporal Compton, of Company D, who soon after fell, mortally struck, about a rod below the crest of the ridge. The dangerous emblem, which seemed to be a favorite mark for the for the enemy, was snatched from the dying Compton by Corporal Fred Hensey, of Company I, who soon planted it pierced by fifteen bullet holes, upon the rebel works, - the first Union flag to fly upon the hard won crest of rugged hill.

Santa Cruz Sentinel (June 27, 1903)


Ed. "Sentinel"- In youth we look forward. In age we grow reminiscent and look backward, and sixty years ago in May, 1843, three boys from Lee Oneida county, New York, left for the then far West, by canal boat to Buffalo (making sixty-four miles in twenty-four hours), by propeller to Milwaukee, fare $4, steerage passage, furnishing our own bedding. Our vessel was heavily ladened, and with being grounded below Detroit and again in Lake St. Clair, we were three weeks in getting to Milwaukee. As we approached the harbor a boat manned by oarsmen rowed out to meet us. A man stood up in the boat and hailed us, “Captain, you can land at the new dock.” (Up to this time lighters came out to meet vessels and carried passengers and baggage up the shallow river. As we landed on the new dock we were much surprised to hear a man call to us, “25 cents for baggage”. We had not thought of the expense of the dock, but supposed it was made to induce people to land in Wisconsin, and grow up with the country. Next morning two of the boys struck out northwest, the writer with his pack on his back weighing 27 pounds and containing all his earthly goods, and one struck out southwest for Rock river over wild prairies, often ten miles without water. Coming one evening tired and footsore, to a little log cabin at the head of Turtle creek, I asked for supper and bed. “We have nothing but bread and milk.” said the lady of the house. “Good enough,” was my answer. Climbing a ladder to sleep in a “shake-down” on the floor under the rafters, the lady would only accept 15 cents for her kindness, for I had told her that I must leave in the morning as soon as I could see on account of the heat. Truly the pioneer was hospitable and large hearted. In the morning Beloit was reached and we had a view of Rock river. Your venerable townsman, Mr. Fargo, can tell you of early days at Beloit. June 25, 1843 I arrived at the home of my brother, Anson Miller, at Rockford Illinois, a town then of 500 inhabitants, now a city of 38,000, with 200 factories. The writer, with others, has hauled wheat into Chicago with teams and sold it for 50, 60, 65, 80, and 82 cents per bushel, according to the demand. West of Randolph street bridge there were no buildings except some rude board shanties. My last visit to Rockford was in 1898. The men I met in 1843 moved with slow step and bent form, but we have lived to see the development of a great and glorious country. The "Sentinel" comes to Skyland each day and is a welcome visitor.

Santa Cruz Sentinel (February 2, 1905)

Skyland Notes

The Asher Miller place, Skyland cottage, has been sold to Rev. John Watson, Pastor of Skyland Presbyterian Church. There are five acres partially in fruit and the rest timberland.

Mr. and Mrs. Asher Miller are to move in March to Santa Cruz with Emily and Catherine Morrison. Miss Emily Morrison, who has been teaching in San Simeon has accepted a position as a teacher of the Happy Valley School.

Santa Cruz Surf (November 26, 1906)

DIED: MILLER- In Santa Cruz, November 26, 1906 Asher Miller a native of New York aged 81 years, 3 months, and 2 days.

Death of Asher Miller

Asher Miller, husband of Mrs. Laura Miller, and brother of the late Judge Anson S. Miller, died this morning at his residence in this city at the ripe age of 81 years.

Mr. Miller was a venerable type of the ideal American citizen of the last half of the nineteenth century. Born in the State of New York, in early manhood he settled with other members of his family in the then young and growing state of Illinois, where he was a contemporary with Lincoln, Yates, Logan, Douglas and others who made history in those days. From Illinois he enlisted in the army, and later in life became a resident of Highland in this county, from whence he removed to this city last year.


All old soldiers in the city are invited to attend the funeral of comrade Asher Miller at the Christian Church at 2 o’clock PM Tuesday Nov. 27. Comrade Miller was a member of the 74th Illinois Infantry and died at the age of 81 years. Comrades will meet at the hall at 1:30Sharp. By order of the Committee.

Santa Cruz Surf (November 26, 1906)

The Funeral of Asher Miller

The funeral will take place from his late residence, No. 26. St. Lawrence St.

The funeral of Asher Miller was held this afternoon from the Christian Church, the services being conducted by Rev. E.C. Philleo of the Presbyterian Church of which church the deceased was a member. The Grand Army of the Republic attended in a body and many beautiful floral tokens covered the casket.

>>Return to Home Page of Old Soldiers: Santa Cruz County Civil War Veterans

>>Return to "M" Index Page

View similarly tagged articles:

cemeteries, Civil War


It is our continuing goal to make available a selection of articles on various subjects and places in Santa Cruz County. Certain topics, however, have yet to be researched. In other cases, we were not granted permission to use articles. The content of the articles is the responsibility of the individual author. It is the Library's intent to provide accurate local history information. However, it is not possible for the Library to completely verify the accuracy of individual articles obtained from a variety of sources. If you believe that factual statements in a local history article are incorrect and can provide documentation, please contact the Webmaster.