Emily Huntington Miller

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Emily Huntington Miller
A woman of the century
A woman of the century
BornEmily Huntington
October 22, 1833
Brooklyn, Connecticut, U.S.
DiedNovember 2, 1913(1913-11-02) (aged 80)
Mexico City Mexico
Resting placeToledo, Ohio
Occupationauthor, poet, educator
John E. Miller
(m. 1860)

Emily Huntington Miller (October 22, 1833 – November 2, 1913) was an American author, poet, and educator.

Miller was the Assistant Editor of The Little Corporal, a children's magazine; Associate Editor of The Ladies Home Journal; and co-founder of St. Nicholas, a publication for children. She was appointed Dean of Women at Northwestern University in Illinois, September 1891. Miller and Jennie Fowler Willing were involved with organizing a convention in Cleveland in 1874,[1] at which the National Woman's Christian Temperance Union was formed.[2]

Early years[edit]

Emily Huntington was born in Brooklyn, Connecticut, October 22, 1833. She was the daughter of the Methodist pastor, Thomas Huntington. She received a liberal education and was graduated from Oberlin College, Oberlin, Ohio in 1857.[3][1]


Emily Huntington Miller

Miller showed her literary ability in her school-days. While yet a girl, she published a number of sketches and stories, which attracted general attention. Thereafter, she was a constant and prolific contributor of sketches, short stories, serials, poems and miscellaneous articles to newspapers and magazines. She earned a reputation by her work on the Little Corporal. She gave much time and work to Sunday-school and missionary interests. She was connected with the Chautauqua Literary and Scientific Circle from its commencement, and served as president of the Chautauqua Woman's Club for four years. She was appointed Dean of Women at Northwestern University,[4] in Evanston, Illinois, where she subsequently resided. Her published literary work included 15 volumes, some of which were republished in England, and all of which found wide circles of readers. Her poetical productions were numerous. Over 100 of her poems were set to music, including her 1865 poem Lilly's Secret, which became the basis for the lyrics to the popular Christmas song Jolly Old Saint Nicholas.[5] In her varied career, she was equally successful as writer, educator, temperance-worker, and journalist.[1]

Besides her literary work, Miller prepared and gave lectures on temperance, also on missionary and educational subjects. She was prominently connected with the Woman's Foreign Missionary Society of the Methodist Episcopal Church, and was a Trustee of Northwestern University at Evanston, Illinois.[6]

Personal life[edit]

In 1860, she married John E. Miller. Of their children, three sons survived, including George A. Miller; their only daughter died in infancy. She was a grandmother to Emily Huntington Miller Witherow, and great-grandmother to Robert Huntington Witherow. Lewis Miller (philanthropist) was a relation. Mr. and Mrs. Miller moved from Evanston, Illinois, to St. Paul, Minnesota, where the husband died in 1882.[1]

Selected works[edit]

  • “Kirkwood series”
  • “Little Neighbors”
  • "Captain Fritz”
  • “Fighting the enemy”
  • “Highway and Hedges”
Popular music (lyrics only)
Hymns (lyrics only) [8]
  • Beyond the Dark River of Death
  • Blessed Are the Children
  • Enter Thy Temple, Glorious King
  • Father, While the Shadows Fall
  • Hark, the Chorus Swelling
  • I Love the Name of Jesus
  • I Love to Hear the Story
  • O, Land of the Blessed!
  • O, Realm of Light
  • Stay, Trembling Soul, and Do Not Fear
  • Tell the blessed Tidings
  • Work and Never Weary
  • Baby's first Christmas


  1. ^ a b c d Willard & Livermore 1893, p. 701.
  2. ^ Gordon, Elizabeth Putnam (1924). Woman Torch Bearers (Public domain ed.). Woman Christian Temperance Union. p. 15.
  3. ^ "Mrs. Emily Huntington Miller" (PDF). New York Times. November 5, 1913. Retrieved November 20, 2009.
  4. ^ "Radical Woman in a Classic Town: Frances Willard of Evanston" (PDF). Retrieved August 1, 2018.
  5. ^ a b "Fa-la-la-la facts". USPS.com. United States Postal Service. Archived from the original on 30 November 2019. Retrieved 30 November 2019. The lyrics were adapted from the 1865 poem “Lilly’s Secret” by author and poet Emily Huntington Miller.
  6. ^ Willard 1888, p. 154-59.
  7. ^ https://web.archive.org/web/20191130163521/https://www.loc.gov/item/ihas.100009347/
  8. ^ https://web.archive.org/web/20140715040939/http://hymntime.com/tch/bio/m/i/l/miller_eh.htm


External links[edit]