Skip to main content

Miner-Thomas Family papers

 Collection — Box: 60
Identifier: MS-SC1054

Scope and Contents

Correspondence is mostly of the Thomas family and includes many letters from Julia (Thomas) Barker to Eleanor "Ellen" (Thomas) Miner. In one letter, Julia mentions a visit from Mary and Robert Lincoln and Mary's need to visit her husband's grave. Also includes letters from Julia and Ellen's brother Marshall while attending medical school in Philadelphia; from Jane Pond in Louisiana, whose family headed a girls' seminary there, includes a description, 1851, of Oakland College in Mississippi; from Julia and Ellen's mother at Monticello Seminary with references to Philena Fobes and Miss Eaton; letters from her sister while at Monticello; letters from Julia's husband and her brothers while serving in the Civil War, letters from friends back in Philadelphia and two letters from Fred Barker after Julia's death. Ellen's diary with her poetry, 1855-1856.

Miner family material includes diaries kept by Edward G. Miner, 1837-1838; correspondence re: Miner and Hawthorne genealogy. Copy of a speech given by James Miner at the fiftieth anniversary of the Morgan County Medical Society and copy of a reminiscence by Miner of Abraham Lincoln at Winchester. An 1894 letter from Chicago written during and discussing the Pullman Strike.


  • Created: 1837 - 1955


Biographical / Historical

Edward G. Miner (1809-1900) came to Winchester, Illinois from Vermont in 1832 and eventually started a bank in that city. A member of the state legislature from 1846-1848, he essentially remained in banking until he retired. He married Sophronia Alden (1808-1891), a descendent of John Alden. Their son James (1835-1925), a doctor, married Eleanor "Ellen" Thomas (1837-1908), whose mother Sarah Hawthorne Thomas was a cousin of Nathaniel Hawthorne. James and Ellen, after living in Waverly and Springfield, settled in Winchester. James was a founding member of the Morgan County Medical Association.

James Miner and Ellen's brothers Edward (1844-1912) and Marshall Thomas all served in the Civil War. James served as a surgeon with the 101st Infantry and Edward Thomas served with the 144th. Marshall was killed in the war.

Ellen's sister Julia (c. 1840-1869) married Fredrick Barker (1835-1920), who worked as a store clerk in Springfield and Lincoln, Illinois, and served with the 106th Infantry. They then moved to Kansas, where Julia died giving birth to twins boys.


5 folders (5 folder : 2.5 linear inches (.21 linear feet))

Language of Materials