~ Memorial of Elisha M. Miles ~
“Elisha Milton Miles was born on what is now known as the Frank Mitchell farm, near Fordsville, Ky., December 11, 1839, and was the eldest son of John S. and Amanda Miles, formerly of Shelby county, Ky. I have not been able to learn anything in regard to the early history of John Miles except that he came to Ohio county from Shelby county, and it was in the latter county that he married Miss Ford. The exact date that he came to Ohio county is unknown, but it is supposed to be in the year 1834. He was for many years a member of old Mt. Pleasant Baptist church, and for some years he was the moderator of that church. He died October 21, 1883, and his wife died some years before. Elisha Miles lived on a farm near Fordsville with his father till the year 1857, when he went to Cloverport, Ky., to learn the trade of tailor with William Witt, who married a sister to Elisha’s mother. Young Miles remained with his uncle till the year of 1860, when the troubled forbodence of the Civil War so paralyzed all business pursuits that he returned to the farm near Fordsville, where he remained till October 15, 1861, when he enlisted in Co. K, 17th Kentucky Volunteer Infantry, and after a service of 39 months he was honorably discharged a private of Co. B, of the 17th Ky. at Louisville, Ky. January 23rd 1865 by reason of expiration of term of service.
“During the Georgia Campaign in the battles near Cassville Ga., May 19-22, 1864, he received a gun-shot wound in the left hand which made a cripple of him for life, and on his return from the army as this wound deprived him from working at his trade, he engaged in agricultural pursuits on his father’s farm. April 8, 1869, he married Miss Josephine E. Smith, daughter of Henry Smith, a prominent early settler of the Fordsville community. Mrs. Miles is a twin sister of N. B. Smith now (May 1904) living near Fordsville and he was named in honor of Napoleon Bonaparte, the great Republican Emperor of France, and his twin sister after the Empress Josephine, first wife of Napoleon .
“In December 1882, a Grand Army Post was recruited at Fordsville, and when it was duly mustered, January 6th, 1883, Elisha M. Miles was one of its charter members, and during his long membership in the order he was in good standing and served much of that time as an officer of the post, or a committeeman on some business pertaining to the Grand Army. Comrade Miles died of consumption on the 17th of March 1898, after a lingering illness of many months. His funeral service was preached by Rev. B. T. Jenkins (This should read Rev. B. F. Jenkins, jb), a sergeant of the 17th Ky., and a former pastor of the Baptist church at Fordsville, where Brother Miles and many of his relatives were members for years. He was buried by his Grand Army comrades with his deceased relatives in the Josiah Haynes graveyard on his farm, and the United States Government furnished a military headstone to mark his grave. Comrade Miles is survived by his wife and six children – three sons and three daughters. Two of his sons are grown and married. At the time these notes were taken, April 13, 1904, his youngest son is 12 years old and his youngest daughter is 8 years old.
“Comrade Miles’ early home is about two and one-half miles from Fordsville, on the Pattieville or Shreve Post-office road and is near the beautiful country graveyard where the remains of him and so many of his relatives and friends lie buried. Fond and loving hands have planted choice flowers upon his grave which will soon be in full bloom and bring to the visitors memory the following lines:
“Sweet flowers exhalt their fragrant breath
Where now he peaceful sleeps in death
And trees their shedding branches wave
Above his solemn country grave.”
“To those that were familiar with Elisha M. Miles’ reconciliation to the dispensation of our souls after death, and his views on the justice of the god to us all, summons to quit the walks of this life, the following lines had no doubt been long considered by him, which was evidently the way he appeared to take his last farewell look of each one of his relatives and friends during his last days.
“The call of my maker compelled me from home
I bade my companion farewell.
I left my sweet children, who for me now mourn
In a far distant region to dwell.”
“Reverend Jenkins, while preaching the funeral sermon at the grave of comrade Miles, spoke of the long church membership of his comrade in arms. He also said that brother Elisha, being human, had his faults, and that no one appeared to regret his faults greater than brother Miles did himself, nor try harder to make amends for them, which we all knew was so.
“In our free and happy country where we have full access to the beautiful teachings of the sacred scriptures it has long ago became an admitted fact by our best and wisest men that when our bodies are laid to rest in the ground that our misgivings are buried with them and our souls made radiant with the blood of the blessed Redeemer, as returned in a pure state to the God who gave it. May the grave of Elisha M. Miles ever be kept green. “
~ Edwin Forbes
Source: The Hartford Republican
June 17, 1904, Page 8
WIFE OF ELISHA M. MILES, JOSEPHINE E. (SMITH) MILES
Jan 18, 1848 – Jan 23, 1928
Josephine Elizabeth Smith was born in the winter of 1848 to Henry Smith (1808-1882) and Elizabeth Marlow (1818-1863) at Fordsville , Ohio County, Kentucky.
When she was 21 she married Elisha Milton Miles on April 8, 1869 in Hartford. Tthey made their home at Fordsville. In the 1900 census she stated she had borne seven children; six were living.
According to her death certificate, she died from bronchial pneumonia, emphysema, and old age. She was 80 years old at the time of her death and was living in Fordsville. The informant was J. H. Miles of Irvington, Breckinridge, KY. In the 1900 census she stated she had borne seven children, and six were living. See Find- -A Grave Memorial #61649698 – Created by John Dicky Smith.
JOSEPHINE SMITH MILES WITH LETITIA CHAPIN MILES (WIFE OF JO'S SON JOHN HENRY MILES) AND GRANDDAUGHTERS ANITA GRACE MILES (WHEELER) AND HELEN BLINN MILES (HARDIN) ABOUT 1921.
Source: John (Dicky) Hardin
10-10-1879, INVALID PENSION TO ELISHA. 3-19-1898,
WIDOWS PENSION TO JOSEPHINE.
Source: John Hardin
Note: This posting was researched and contributed by my friend, Janice Brown.