Mar. 5, 1925 Sulphur Springs Benton County Arkansas, USA
PHILIP OTIS "PHIL" MILLER was born April 30, 1881, the oldest of six children born to Andrew Jackson and Emma Mae (Wells) Miller. His parents relocated to Lincoln County, Oklahoma, when the Oklahoma Territory was opened for settlement, 1891-1893. Philip was to claim Lincoln County as his home for the rest of his life.
As a young man, while firing a gun, Philip was injured when the gun kicked back and hit him in the mouth. From that day, he wore a mustache to hide the scar on his face that resulted from this accident.
On December 25, 1907, Philip was united in marriage to Miss Coy Jane Earp, by the bride's grandfather, Rev. Martin Van Buren Wright. The wedding took place near Chandler, at the residence of Coy's grandparents. Philip and Coy were the parents of three daughters--Freda Blanche, born 1909; Opal Mary, born 1911; and Monnie Emma, born in 1917. Freda Blanche fell victim to malaria/typhoid fever, May 31, 1912, and was buried in Black Cemetery near where the family was living.
By occupation, Philip Miller was a farmer, but also a minister for the Churches of God. He traveled many miles on horseback, holding revivals and pastoring small churches in the Lincoln County area. He served on the Standing Committee of the Oklahoma Eldership of the Churches of God, until poor health necessitated his resignation. Those who remembered hearing him preach all spoke of his remarkable memory of the Scriptures, often quoting entire chapters by memory as he preached, without picking up his Bible, which lay on the pulpit in front of him. He loved to sing, sometimes as he preached, and his two favorite songs were, "Life Is Like a Mountain Railroad," and "I Feel Like Traveling On."
He became ill and moved with his family to Sulphur Springs, Benton County, Arkansas, in November of 1924, in the hope that the mineral waters there would be beneficial to his health. He died there on March 5, 1925 (cause of death - Chronic Enterocolitis), and his wife and two young daughters accompanied his body, home on the train to Lincoln County, Oklahoma, where he was buried in the Stroud Cemetery on March 8, 1925. His widow never remarried and survived Philip for almost half a century, dying July 5, 1973, in Chandler, Lincoln County. She is buried beside him in the Stroud Cemetery.
NEWSPAPER OBITUARY FOR PHILIP O. MILLER, THE STROUD MESSENGER, STROUD, LINCOLN COUNTY, OKLAHOMA, MARCH 13, 1925, FRONT PAGE: "Philip O. Miller, who resided north of Stroud, but has been at Sulphur Springs, Arkansas, for his health, died March 6, 1925 (sic: March 5, 1925). The funeral services were conducted from the North Methodist Church, Sunday afternoon, March 8, by Rev. Byrd. The remains were tenderly laid to rest in the Stroud Cemetery. He leaves a wife and two children to mourn their loss. The deepest sympathy is extended the sorrowing ones."