Mrs. Dolly MILLIKIN, in view of the privations of her early life, residing, as she did, before and after her marriage, in the most extreme of the Western settlements, where even limited opportunities for mental culture were not to be found, proved to be a woman of good sense and of great usefulness to the community in which she so long lived. She was highly esteemed for her intellect and her energy and exemplary life. The father and mother were industrious, frugal, and thrifty for their day and generation They did not accumulate wealth, as others did not; but they became comparatively easy and independent, so that they could provide for the wants of their large family, and give them such advantages as existed for the acquisition of a very imperfect rudimentary education. Their children left the paternal roof well trained in their morals, and with characters that were unblemished, to make their own living, and to stand full according to their own merits. They had born to them eight sons and one daughter, all of whom attained to manhood and womanhood. They were Daniel, James, John H., Samuel, William S., Robert B., Andrew, Abel, and Mary. All of the sons, with a single exception, have been residents of Ohio, and five of them were residents of Hamilton, and now have their final resting in Greenwood Cemetery.
Daniel MILLIKIN, the first of the family, was born on the fourteenth day of February, 1779, on Ten-mile Creek in Washington County, Pennsylvania. The early incidents of his boyhood life are not known by any of his surviving descendants. Being the oldest child of a young married couple, who had commenced their married life with the view of acquiring and improving a home under the inevitable trials and privations incident to living on the extreme western border of the settlements, and in a neighborhood sparsely populated, it is fair to presume that his services as a boy and young man were constantly required in assisting his parents. The history of all boys on the then Western borders at the period will show that they had to perform much labor and to endure many privations.
The facilities afforded for obtaining even a very limited rudimentary education were necessarily very meager. What progress he made we have no means of knowing. When, however, he arrived at the age of eighteen, about 1797, his father and mother found themselves able to give their oldest son some respite from the labors of the farm to afford him an opportunity of acquiring a better education than he could obtain at home.
Accordingly, in fulfillment of their wishes, the son was sent to Jefferson College, then located at Cannonsburg, about six miles to the north of the town of Washington, in his native county. He remained there over a year, devoting part of his time to the languages, in view of reading medicine. Soon after leaving college, he commenced the study of that profession under the care and instruction of Dr. John BELL, a prominent physician residing in Greensboro, Greene County.
After he had completed his studies under Dr. BELL, and was authorized to commence practice, he deemed it prudent to seek a wife. While residing at Greensboro he became acquainted with the family of Colonel John MINOR, living near that place, and, in fulfillment of his purpose, he subsequently, on the 31st day of December, 1801, at the residence of her father, married Joan MINOR. She was born where she was married, on the twenty-second day of September, 1782, being at the time of her marriage a few weeks less than nineteen years old, while he lacked a few weeks of being twenty-two.
The father of Mrs. MILLIKIN, Colonel John MINOR, was of the fifth generation from Thomas MINOR, who was born in England in 1608, and who emigrated to America in 1630. John MINOR, fifth son of Stephen MINOR, was born in Loudoun County, Virginia, on the fifth day of January, 1747. He married Cassandra WILLIAMS in Maryland on the 20th day of February, 1771. She was born on the twenty-second day of December, 1753, and was the sister of General Otho Holland WILLIAMS, who was a distinguished officer under George WASHINGTON, in the war of Revolution, and acquired high distinction for his gallantry at the battles of Guilford, Hobkirk’s Hill, and Eutaw.
Colonel MINOR was the youngest son of his family, and soon after the death of his father resided with his brother William, in Washington County, Maryland. His active, adventurous temper soon impelled him to go further west and engage in the stirring excitement of which existed at that point in the history of Western Virginia and South-western Pennsylvania. He and his brother William found new homes on Whitely Creek, west of the Monongahela, in what ultimately proved to be in Washington County, Pennsylvania. There he and his brother had removed prior to his marriage, and he had provided a Western domicile for himself and intended wife before that event. "He had led the way in settling west of the river, and maintained his leadership in all that concerned the development of the country and the protection of its settlers."
Holding a commission as colonel from the governor of Virginia, all South-western Virginia (sic) being then regarded as within the boundaries of Virginia, he was thus recognized by the settlers as commander-in-chief of the militia in that region of the country.
Under the instructions of General MORGAN he built stockade forts, and appointed spies and rangers, to insure, as far as possible, protection to settlers against the depredations of the Indians. The cabins of himself and his brother were fortified stockades, and were known as the Minor forts, to which settlers resorted when dangers were apprehended from the approach of the treacherous Indians.
Colonel MINOR, under orders, built the flotilla of boats designed for the transportation of the regiment of enlisted soldiers under the command of General George Rogers CLARK, who descended the Ohio River with a view of reaching British posts on the Wabash and on the Mississippi. The boats were constructed at the mouth of Dunkard Creek, in Greene County, under the immediate supervision of Colonel MINOR. Their completion was greatly retarded by the raids of Indians, which Colonel MINOR had to repel by organized companies of flying militia, under his command.
After Indian troubles had ceased, and peace prevailed in Western Pennsylvania, and the true location of Washington County had been defined and settled, Colonel Minor was three times elected as a member of the Legislature from that county. He procured ultimately the passage of a law which authorized the organization of the county of Greene out of the territory which belonged to Washington County. Subsequently, he held several offices in the new county of Greene, and for several times served as an associate judge of the Court of Common Pleas. Of hima gentleman, in writing of the early history of Greene County, recently said: "His life was one of eminent success and usefulness. He was probably the most prominent public man that Greene County has ever produced "a man of moral worth and character."
Mrs. Cassandra MINOR died on the third day of March, 1799, aged forty-five years, and Colonel MINOR died on the 30th day of December, 1833.
The result of the marriage of Colonel MINOR with Miss WILLIAMS was the birth of twelve children – six sons and six daughters. One of the later, Joan MINOR, became the wife of Dr. MILLIKIN, as before stated. After the death of the mother of these children Colonel MINOR married a daughter of Colonel George WILSON, by whom he had one son, L. L. MINOR, an attorney at law, now residing at Wayneville, in the county of Greene, and one daughter, Minerva MINOR. None of the children of Colonel MINOR now survive, with the exception of L. L. MINOR.
Immediately after his marriage, Dr. MILLIKIN commenced the practice of medicine, residing at his old home. The sparseness of the population and the general healthfulness of the neighborhood did not furnish a very encouraging prospect for a young physician. Besides, the spirit of emigration was prevailing, and young men, especially those who were ambitious to improve their condition, were contemplating new homes in the further West.
Strongly impressed with the prevailing conviction that "Westward the course of the empire takes its way," Dr. MILLIKIN determined to investigate for himself, and , by personal observation, to see whether it would be wise to pursue that course. Accordingly, in 1804, he came to Ohio, and visited the valley of the Miamis. As the result of his investigations, ultimately he and his two brothers – John H. MILLIKIN and Samuel MILLIKIN – on the 7th day of April, 1807, took their departure from their cherished home. The separation was an occasion of deep feeling with parents and sons. They, however, had made up their minds for the undertaking, and went forward. John H. MILLIKIN and wife intended to locate in Knox County, Ohio. Samuel assisted his brother to drive his stock up as far as Zanesville, and there they separated. Samuel continued his journey on horseback to Cincinnati, where he expected to meet his brother. Dr. MILLIKIN, with his wife and three children, embarked on a flat-bottomed family boat at Fredericktown, on the Monongahela, descending the river to Pittsburg, and thence going by the Ohio River to Cininnati. After remaining there for a short time, he, with his family and his brother Samuel, took his departure for Hamilton, reaching it on the night of May, 1807.
The first house he occupied was a story and a half hewed log house situated on the precise spot now occupied by the paper-mill of Snider Sons, on lot No. 160. During the ensuing Fall and Winter he built the two-story hewed log house still standing on the north end of lot 202, on Second Street, north of Heaton Street, to which house he removed in the early part of the summer of 1808. Afterwards, he purchased lot No. 118, on the corner of High and Fourth Streets, upon which he erected the frame house now remaining, and into it he removed his family on the eighteenth day of September, 1819. He resided there for eighteen or twenty years, and afterwards he built the house on the north end of lot 155, on Third Street, where he resided until within a few years of his death.
Dr. MILLIKIN had a large family. Their children were born as follows: Stephen MILLIKIN, on the second day of January, 1803; John M. MILLIKIN, on the fourteenth day of October, 1804; Anna MILLIKIN, on the sixth day of September, 1806; Thomas B. MILLIKIN and James H. MILLIKIN, on the eighth day of May, 1808; Anna MILLIKIN, on the fifth day of Match, 1811; Joan MILLIKIN, on the tenth day of May, 1813; Mary MILLIKIN, on the twenty-second day of August, 1815; Daniel MILLIKIN, on the seventeenth day of April, 1818; Jane MILLIKIN, on the twenty-second day of September,1819; James MILLIKIN, on the 8th day of July, 1822; Otho W. MILLIKIN, on the 22d day of January, 1826. The three first were born in Washington County, Pennsylvania, and the others in Hamilton. Anna and James H. both died young and previous to the others of like name. Nine of the foregoing arrived to lawful age, and were all married as follows: Stephen married Eleanor EWING, April 17, 1823; John M. married Mary G. HOUGH, September 6, 1831; Thomas B. married Catherine HOUGH, November 10, 1831; Anna married Americus SYMMES, February 21, 1832; Joan married Robert KENNEDY, December 6, 1832; Mary married D. D. CONOVER, October 19, 1838; Daniel married Sarah B. OSBORN, February 1, 1843; Jane married O. P. LINE, April 25, 1843; Otho W. married Lida SCHENCK, January 11, 1854. Stephen and Thomas B. lost their wives, and were subsequently again married. All raised families, and only four – John M. MILLIKIN, Joan KENNEDY, Jane LINE, and O. W. MILLIKIN – now survive. Stephen and Thomas both removed West, and both died, leaving families.
Mrs. Joan MILLIKIN had, for some years, been in feeble health, and died on the 28th day of September, 1830, being then only a few days past forty-eight years of age. Owing to the extremely severe hardships that Dr. MILLIKIN had been compelled to endure in the very extensive and laborious practice of his profession, in the earlier years of his residence in Butler County, his stalwart frame was for years enfeebled by disease. For some time previous to his death he occasionally suffered severely from acute attacks, while his general health was seriously impaired. He finally departed this life on the third day of November, 1849, having attained the age of seventy years, eight months, and twenty days, and after a residence in Butler County of forty-two years and nearly six months.
The professional career of Dr. MILLIKIN was not only protracted, but it was excessively laborious and severe. There was no mode of conveyance save riding on horseback. Docotrs had to ride in the intense, hot sun, and were exposed to the cold, the rain, and wintery storms. The roads were frightfully bad for a large portion of the year. As there were but few physicians, Dr. MILLIKIN had a wide range in his practice, not only visiting in all parts of the county, but occasionally receiving calls from adjoining counties. The pressing demands that were made on physicians during the Summer and Fall months, for twenty-five or thirty years of Dr. MILLIKIN’s professional life, can not be understood by those who did not live at the time referred to. Almost every household contained one or more patients needing medical treatment. Oftentimes the entire family would be prostrate with chills and fever, or with a most malignant case of bilious fever; so that there were not enough well persons in the family competent to answer the pressing calls of the sick. For continuous months the services of physics were so much required that their average imperfect rest did not exceed four of five hours out of the twenty-four. It is marvelous that the excessive toil, great exposure, and deprivation of comfort and rest did not destroy the most robust constitution or impair the health of the most vigorous and enduring.
In the practice of his profession in the period referred to, Dr. MILLIKIN was enabled to endure much hardship. He was of cheerful, genial temperament, and submitted to the hardships and discomforts of his profession with but little complaint. His services were inadequately compensated by those he served. The fees charged and collected were insufficient for the comfortable maintenance of a family. He was unselfish and liberal in his nature, and had apprehensions lest he might demand too much for his services, or call too soon for the miserable pittance that he charged his patients. He married a second wife, by whom he had several children, one of whom survives – Samuel MILLIKIN.
Outside of his professional life he had the confidence of the public, and occupied several honorable positions. He was in the war of 1812, in Colonel MILLS’s regiment, as surgeon, and, for a period, as quartermaster. He was a trustee of Miami University for many years; represented the county in the Ohio Legislature in 1816; was major-general of the Third Division of Ohio militia, composed of Butler and Warren Counties, and served for three terms as an associate judge of the Court of Common Pleas.
The family of John M. MILLIKIN and wife that attained full age consisted of three sons – Minor, Joseph, and Dan – and one daughter, named Mary. The two first named were graduates of Miami University. Minor studied law, and attended Harvard Law School, but did not engage in practice. After his marriage and his return from a visit to Europe, he located on a farm, and gave attention to agricultural pursuits until the rebellion broke out. He enlisted in the first cavalry company organized in Ohio, and became its first lieutenant. In connection with the other officers of the company, he was compelled to furnish the horses necessary for mounting their men, as, in 1861, the government had not become aware of the necessity for providing for a cavalry corps in a well-organized and efficient army. The government engaged to pay for the use of the horses, to provide grain and forage, and to pay for horses lost in actual service. The cavalry company was first engaged in actual conflict under General ROSENCRANS at the battle of Rich Mountain, in Western Virginia. His subsequent service in the army will be noticed elsewhere.
Joseph MILLIKIN, after he had graduated, engaged in the study of theology, and was a student of Princeton Theological Seminary. Subsequently he became Professor of Greek in his Alma Mater, and, in connection with the duties pertaining to his chair, he gave instruction in the Hebrew language. In 1873, upon the organization of the Ohio Agricultural and Mechanical College, located in Columbus, he was elected to occupy the position of professor of the German, French, and English languages and their literatures. He continued to occupy the position of professor of these branches until June, 1881, at the end of the college year, when, from severe and protracted illness, he was constrained to resign his professorship in that institution.
Dan MILLIKIN, the third son, turned his attention to the study of medicine, and graduated at the Miami Medical College, in the city of Cincinnati, in 1875. In May, 1875, he opened an office in Hamilton, and proffered his professional services to the public. He is now actively engaged in the arduous labors of his profession.
The daughter married, and died on the 17th day of Septmber, 1870, leaving one child, which survived its mother only a few days.
Samuel MILLIKIN, fourth son of James MILLIKIN, was born on the 28th day of February,m 1787. He was, consequently, only a few days past the age of twenty, when he left his paternal home and the friends of his youth, and accompanied his brother Daniel to the West, and, as heretofore stated, reached Hamilton on the 7th of May, 1807. He made his home with his brother for some years, and, for the first years of his residence in his family, devoted himself to the study of medicine. He became fully impressed with the conviction that the duties of the profession would not be congenial to his rather sensitive nature, and he declined to fully qualify himself for assuming the responsibilities of the profession.
He utilized the knowledge he had acquired, and opened the first regular drug-store that was established in Hamilton. He continued in that business for some years and until about the time of his marriage. On the twenty-eighth day of September, 1813, he married Mary HUNTER, sister of Mrs. Nancy REILY and of Mrs. Joseph HOUGH, all daughters of Joseph HUNTER of Fairfield Township. The result of this marriage was three children – two sons and one daughter – who lived to the age of majority. Hannah MILLIKIN, the oldest child, became the wife of William ANDERSON, son of Isaac ANDERSON and brother of Judge Fergus ANDERSON. She died on the twenty-fifth of May, 1834. His oldest son, James H. MILLIKIN, was raised a merchant, and became the partner of his brother-in-law, William ANDERSON. In 1845 Mr. ANDERSON died, and as a consequence, the business of the firm was discontinued. James H. MILLIKIN continued in business for some time, and removed to Indiana, where he resided for several years. He now resides with his family in Decatur, Illinois.
John MILLIKIN, the younger son of the family of Samuel MILLIKIN, now resides in the First Ward of Hamilton. His mother having died on the twelfth day of July, 1828, when he was only a few years of age, he continued to reside with his father in Ohio and in Indiana, and subsequently removed from Vermillion County, Indiana, to Hamilton, where he has been engaged for many years in the firm of Long, Alstatter and Co.
Samuel MILLIKIN was for a short time a partner of Mr. HOUGH in merchandising, in Hamilton; and afterwards he was engaged in the same business in in Middletown, but unfortunately connected pork-packing with the business of merchandising, and found himself the worse of the speculation. He closed his business in Middletown, and returned to Hamilton. In the Fall of 1821 he was elected sheriff of the county. He was reelected in 1823, and served out two terms with great acceptance by the public. As an officer, as a man, he was everywhere highly esteemed for those who transacted business of any kind with him.
His wife having died, as stated, on the 12th of July, 1828, he devoted himself for some time in supervising and closing up the business affairs of Mr. HOUGH, who had become engaged in business in Vicksburg, Mississippi. Subsequently, he again became engaged in merchandising, for a short period, in Hamilton, but finally, in 1836, determined upon removing to Indiana, and engaged in the business of farming. His son John remained with him for most of the time during his stay in Indiana. Ultimately the father and son deemed it advisable to return to Hamilton, especially as the father was infirm in health and the son had a large family, consisting of wife, sons, and daughters. Having disposed of his property to his sons, he closed up all his business affairs, he and his son and family, in 1864, left their home in Indian, and returned to Hamilton, where he had long resided, and where his son and wife were both born.
He died on the seventh day of October, 1870, at the ripe age of eight-three years, seven months and nine days. It will provoke no invidious remark from a survivor who knew Samuel MILLIKIN in his lifetime, and was familiar with his characteristics, to say that few men ever lived in Butler County who were more highly esteemed than he was for his integrity, his conscientiousness, his kindness and good deeds. He always had many enduring friends, and died leaving behind him no enemies.
Dr. Robert B. MILLIKIN, the sixth son of James and Dolly MILLIKIN, was born on the ninth day of December, 1793. At the time of the exodus of his three brothers from their homes, in 1807, he was only in his fourteenth year. He remained with his parents until the Spring of 1813, when the spirit of emigration got the mastery , and constrained him to follow the examples of his brothers. Upon his arrival in Hamilton, he, too, became a member of the family of his brother, where he continued to reside until the time of his marriage.
Soon after his arrival in Hamilton he gave his attention to the study of such branches of an education that were preparatory to the study of medicine. The facilities for acquiring a good education had been by no means excellent. He availed himself of such as existed for more than a year, and then commenced the study of medicine. The Spring of 1817 was full of interesting events for Robert B. MILLIKIN. He had been licensed to practice his profession, he had taken unto himself a wife, had commenced housekeeping, and opened an office where he proposed to answer professional calls.
Dr. R. B. MILLIKIN was married on the sixteenth day of December, 1816, to Sarah GRAY, who was connected to many of the pioneer families of that day. They had three children, who arrived at full age, and all of them survive. Samuel MILLIKIN resided for many years after he became of age in Hamilton. Many years ago he removed to the State of Missouri, where he now resides and is engaged in farming operations. Thomas MILLIKIN, his second son of full age, was born on the 28th day of September, 1819. He married Mary VANHOOK, daughter of William B. VANHOOK, who was a pioneer resident of Hamilton for quite half a century. Elizabeth MILLIKIN married William A. ELLIOTT, son of the Rev. Arthur W. ELLIOTT, who died in 1881.
After Dr. Robert B. MILLIKIN commenced the practice of medicine, he devoted himself to his practice with great assiduity, and to the management of his business affairs he gave the most careful attention. The result of many years’ practice, and the giving of strict attention to all his interests, was the acquisition of property, and the enjoyment of a comparatively independent position. Even while engaged in the active duties of his profession, he gave attention to other business matters, and discharged official duties. He conducted the drug-store in Rossville, now constituting the First Ward of Hamilton. He was postmaster of Rossville for many years, previous to the attachment of that place to Hamilton. Subsequently, after he gave less attention to his professional duties, he engaged in the business of merchandising. During the early and more active period of his life, he discharged the duties of several honorable positions. He was for many years brigadier-general of the militia; a trustee of Miami University; one of the commissioners for the selection of canal lands donated to the State, and a member of the Legislature of Ohio. After the defalcation of a treasurer of the county, he was appointed to fill the vacancy in that office, because of his recognized integrity and his strict and careful vigilance in the management of such an official trust.
His wife died early in the thirties, and Dr. MILLIKIN subsequently married Mrs. Ann Eliza YEAMAN, who still survives. Dr. MILLIKIN died on the twenty-eighth day of June, 1860, having attained the age of sixty-six years, six months, and nineteen days. Thomas MILLIKIN, his son, is a lawyer, and the leader of the bar in this county.
James B. MILLIKIN, another son, after preparatory studies, engaged in the study of law. He was duly admitted to the practice of that profession, and for more than thirty years has been a member of the Butler County bar.
Andrew MILLIKIN was the fourth of the sons of James and Dolly MILLIKIN who came to Butler County from Washington County, Pennsylvania. He was born on the fourth of April, 1796, and removed to Hamilton in 1820 or 1821. He was a clothier by trade; but after his removal here, and his marriage, he engaged in several pursuits, and subsequently purchased a farm on Pleasant Run, near Symmes’s corner.
He was married in 1822 to Adeline HUNTER, daughter of Joseph HUNTER, and sister to the wife of his brother Samuel, to Mrs. HOUGH, and Mrs. REILY. He died in 1833 on his farm, being the first victim in the county of the terrible epidemic, Asiatic cholera. He left a widow and three children. He was a man of vigorous constitution, of activity and industry, and notorious for his cordial, friendly intercourse with all who knew him.
Abel MILLIKIN was the youngest son of the family. He continued to reside on the original homestead, on Ten-mile, for many years. Finally, he removed to Hamilton, and resided here for for some years. He was the father of the first wife of Noah C. McFARLAND, and father also of Dr. Samuel MILLIKIN, who for many years was a reputable practitioner of medicine in Hamilton. He was the partner of Dr. MORRIS, then a practicing physician. Dr. Samuel MILLIKIN died at the residence of his brother-in-law, N. C. McFARLAND, and was buried in Greenwood Cemetery, where the remains of his father and his sister were deposited.