Born: September 30, 1864

Died: December 24, 1942

Eleanor Sarah Miller was the daughter of Van Buren Miller. She served as librarian of the Saranac Lake Free Library and taught in Saranac Lake schools.

Plattsburgh Press-Republican, December 29, 1942


SARANAC LAKE, Dec. 28—Miss Eleanor S. Miller, 78, descendant of Captain Pliny Miller, pioneer settler of this village, and sister of former Village President Seaver A. Miller, died Thursday afternoon at her home at 24 Main street after an illness of two weeks.

Miss Miller, an authority on local history, was a member of one of Saranac's most influential families in its development from a cluster of log cabins 120 years ago to the village of today.

Her grandfather, Captain Miller, was a veteran of the War of 1812 and a native of Rensselaer county who came to this area about 1822. Jacob Moody was officially the first settler here, but it was Captain Miller who first gave Saranac the status of a community.

The captain erected a sawmill on the site of present power house and in 1827 built the first dam across the Saranac river at that point, creating what was later named Lake Flower in honor of Governor Roswell P. Flower of Watertown. In the 1940s he erected a small hotel on the site of the present offices.

His son, John Miller, Miss Miller's grandfather, inherited from him on his death in 1859 much of the land now occupied by the central part of the village. It was he who erected the widely known Riverside hotel, later sold to Orlando Blood.

Her father, Van Buren Miller, likewise was an extensive land owner, owning the present site of the town hall and the home in which Miss Miller died, one of the oldest houses in the village. Like his father and grandfather, he was a lumberman and businessman and served as well as justice of the peace and supervisor. Through his efforts, the old "State Road" to Tupper Lake, now known as the Wawbeek road, was constructed in the 1870s.

The Millers were active in obtaining educational facilities in the rude mountain village and gave several parcels of land, together with cash toward that end. Van Buren Miller's sister, Miss Anne O. Miller, taught for many years in the old Main street school.

Miss Eleanor Miller was born Sept. 29, 1864, at Saranac Lake, the daughter of Van Buren and Sarah E. Malbone Miller.

Miss Miller attended the Saranac Lake schools and later was graduated from Oswego Normal school. She taught for a few years at Plattsburgh High school and then returned to this village to the faculty of the local public school. Miss Miller later taught in Lennox, and was also principal of the public school in Summitt, N. J., for several years.

Before going to Summitt as principal in 1906, Miss Miller was librarian of the Saranac Lake public library. She was instrumental in raising funds for St. Luke's Episcopal church, of which she was a communicant, through the presentation of the Gilbert and Sullivan operettas, the Mikado and Pinafore.

She retired from the teaching profession in 1928 to care for her mother, who died in October, 1929. Miss Miller also was chairman of the Junior Red Cross for a number of years.

Following her mother's death she had shared the home with her brother. She was locally noted for her flowers, raised in the gardens on the bank of the Saranac river at the rear of the residence.