Ellen McCulloch Miller

October 11, 1844 - December 11, 1908



Dictated by Marilyn Baker Jenson
Great-granddaughter of Ellen

This history of Ellen McCulloch Miller was dictated by Marilyn Baker Jenson, a great-granddaughter of Ellen.

Ellen Miller was born in Rutherglen, Lanarkshire, Scotland on the 11th of October 1844. She was christened Helen McCullok Miller on the 24th of November. She was always known as Ellen.

She came with her mother and father a family of 13. They came on the ship, Carnatic. They sailed on the 20th of February 1849. Ellen was the next to the youngest of the family just 4 years old. They got to St. Louis, Missouri on the 20th of April 1849.

The father and the boys went to work in the coal mines in a place called Gavois, a mining camp, 6 miles out of St. Louis. (It is now a suburb of St. Louis.)

The parents and family contracted cholera. The mother, father, and two teenage brothers died with in a very short time of each other in June and July, 1849. There was a cholera epidemic at the time. There was a lack of coffins. They couldn't be bought. They couldn't keep up with so many people that were dying, so the older brother went out and tore down the oxen pen and sawed and nailed the boards together to make a rude coffin for his father. They wrapped him in a blanket and buried him.

It was up to the oldest brother, David and his oldest sister, who married there in St. Louis, to bring the children across the plains. The oldest sister, Mary, married Robert Easton. He and his seven year old girl from a former marriage and according to the history of her brother, John, they came in a wagon, eleven of them. They crossed the plains together in the Joseph F. Sharp Co.

Ellen was 5 years old when they crossed the plains. She was raised by her brother, David, in Greenville where they eventually ended up. They were first in Salt Lake City, then they were in southern Utah in Cedar City before moving to Greenville.

The Miller family stayed fairly close to each other. David raised his tiny sister, Ellen.

When she was 16 years old, she was married to William Edwards after a courtship of 2 weeks. They were married by his father, Samuel James Edwards, who was the presiding Elder in Greenville, Utah. His mother, Ann, served pigeon pie at her wedding.

They had a family of 12 children. Eight died as babies. They buried eight of their children, only 4 grew to maturity.

She wasn't able to nurse her children. Her youngest one, who was my grandmother, Emily Rosetta Edwards, she got a neighbor lady who also had a new born child to nurse her. So, in that way she was able to keep her.

Ellen was blind in one eye as a young girl. The family stories say that her blindness was caused when she had a case of chicken pox. Then later as an adult, she had an accident with her knitting needles and los the sight in her other eye. This made her totally blind in her later years.

A cousin of my mother said that she remembered Grandma Edwards being blind. Her daughter who lived with her used to take her for a walk every evening. She had a little black cap and would walk around the block.

She wa a very small tiny lady. She was a very sweet little lady. She lived in Greenville, Utah for 48 years.

It says on her death certificate that she died of a disease of the spinal cord. She did on the 11th of December, 1908 and is buried by her husband in the Greenville Cemetery.

William Edwards
written by Marilyn Baker Jensen

William Edwards emigrated to America with his parents as a 9 year old  boy in 1851. They were converted to the Church in Worcestershire, England in 1845. They settled temporarily in St. Louis and crossed the plains in the Moses Clawson Company in 1854. They lived in Salt Lake City for a few years. While there he helped his father, who was a brick mason, work on the wall around the temple. When Johnston's Army approached the valley, they moved south to Parowan, Iron County, Utah. Later that fall they went back to Beaver in 1859. His father's family, along with 3 other families moved 5 miles southwest and settled Greenville. (named by his mother because of the green fields.)

In Greenville, he met Ellen Miller who lived with her brother, David Miller, one of the first four families to settle there. She was 16. He was 19. They were married in Greenville on the 8th of April, 1860 by his father, Samuel James Edwards, Presiding Elder of Greenville. His mother served pigeon pie for the wedding while all four families attended. Five years later, they traveled by wagon to Salt Lake City to receive their endowments and be sealed in the Endowment House on the 7th of November, 1865.

William served as a counselor to Robert Easton, first Bishop of Greenville, and again as a counselor to the third bishop, Bishop Joseph S. Morris, for a total of 16 years service. Then, he was made the fourth bishop and served another 16 years in this capacity.

He sent his teams to Missouri to help bring Saints across the plains. He was the Postmaster of Greenville for 36 years. He was Constable for the precinct of Greenville for several years during this time. William was an Indian Scout and stood guard in Greenville for 2 months during an Indian outbreak. He was a farmer of moderate circumstances. He was remembered as a very neat and orderly man, whole yards, livestock, and fields were always in top shape. He also had a blacksmith shop.

His dear wife, Ellen, was his companion and helpmate in all these circumstances. This was the life they shared. They lived in an adobe brick home built by William's father. The adobe brick was made 6 bricks at a time.

They had 12 children, 8 died in infancy. The four girls who survived were all taught to sew, knit, churn butter, make bread, etc. They also helped with outside chores, chopping wood, milking cows, helped harrow and haul the hay, and they raised beautiful gardens.

William died on the 24th of April, 1925 in Greenville, Beaver County, Utah.

William Edwards, Ellen's husband








This page last updated on March 04, 2010 .