George M. Miller

            GEORGE M. MILLER

In the year 1873 Mr. Miller had the western fever microbe in his veins and began to cast longing glances toward the wonderful country that has always entranced and drawn the countless thousands to her boundaries and furnished them homes and sustenance and in most cases made them wealthy. Mr. Miller's brother-in-law, J. A. Rodehaver, wrote such glowing accounts of the great Sappa valley in northwestern Kansas that at last he decided to come and see for himself. Arriving at Buffalo Station in the late evening he at once began looking around for a place to sleep, seeing a store building he went there but the door was locked; after pounding on the door the proprietor finally asked him what he wanted. He said he wanted a place to sleep, then the merchant asked him if he had his bed with him, and when told he had not, the merchant angrily said, "What in the hell are you doing in Kansas without a bed?"  To this pertinent question Mr. Miller had no answer and after some further talk he was told to go and he went to the railroad water tank that was up on some ties and crawled under and laid until morning when he found a man who was coming this way and rode with him as far as Prairie Dog where he stayed all night in a dug out which was far from the kind of lodging he was accustomed to. The next morning he started on foot and along about noon he arrived on the hill south of Oberlin and as he gazed up and down the Sappa valley he said to himself that he never saw anything more beautiful. The leaves of the cottonwoods were turning that beautiful color that makes October in Kansas one of the ideal months. As he rapturously looked up and down the valley that from this point can be seen for nearly twenty miles he decided with the Queen of Sheba, "The half had not been told." But in all this loveliness there was no living thing in sight, not an animal, not a human habitation, the stillness was almost oppressive; the long sweep of hills and valleys ever clothed by the yellow tinted buffalo grass looked not unlike a field of ripening grain.

Mr. Miller decided to stay and has never changed his mind but is still here, this country having done well by him and he is now living a retired life in his pleasant city home. He was one of the first to subscribe for the HERALD and has ever been a staunch patron.

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Last updated Monday, February 17, 2003