Amos Mercer McMillen


AMOS MERCER McMILLEN, a carpenter, who has been a resident of Armstrong county, Pa., for sixty-three years, was born March 17, 1843, in what is now Porter township, Clarion county, about one mile northwest of New Bethlehem, in a log house on the farm then owned by his father, Robert McMillen.

John McMillen, grandfather of Amos M., was born April 4, 1757, and his death occurred Dec. 7, 1837, in his eighty-first year. His wife, Jane (Calhoon), was born Sept. 22, 1773, and died March 18, 1850. They had ten children: Mary married John Cochran; Jeannette married Richard Beatty; Nancy married John Girt; John Married Sarah Maxwell; William married Jane Moore; Margaret married Harmon Girts; Martha married Joseph Watterson; Robert is mentioned below; Wilson married Mary Helen Maxwell; Betsey C. Married Isaac McMillen.

Robert McMillen, son of John, was born Aug. 22, 1811. He came from Westmoreland county to Clarion county in early manhood, and settled on a tract of 400 acres near New Bethlehem, now owned by the Canton Hollow Brick & Tile company. He aided his parents in clearing up a part of this tract, and in 1851 sold it to William Henry, removing to Mahoning township, where he located on the farm now owned by his son James Moore McMillen. This farm comprised fifty-two acres, and is on the hill about one and a half miles south of New Bethlehem, on the road from there to Putneyville. Here his death occurred Sept. 7, 1884. Mr. McMillen married Nancy Moore, who was born Feb. 2, 1819, in County Derry, Ireland, and died June 24, 1896. She was the daughter of William Moore, born in 1779, in County Derry, Ireland, who died Dec. 5, 1867, aged eighty-eight years. Mr. Moore was an early settler of what is now Clarion county, and was a farmer by occupation. His wife was Mary Downs, born in 1782, died in 1832.

Robert McMillen and his wife, Nancy, were the parents of ten children, viz.: William, deceased; Elizabeth Jane, deceased wife of John A, Humphreys; Lovina, deceased wife of Jacob Philips; Amos M.; ;John C., deceased; Lucinda Downs, deceased; James Moore on the homestead; Craig H., deceased; Mary C., wife of George McDonnel, of Ford City. Pa., and Adoniram J., of Kittanning, Pennsylvania.

Amos M. McMillen was but eight years old when his father moved to Mahoning township. Until he was married he lived on the farm assisting his father. and attending the common schools of the locality. He learned the carpenter�s trade, which he has followed since 1865. He has been a manufacturer of frame timber. and a builder of barns, houses, etc. When timber was harder to get he built balloons barns, after which he turned his attention entirely to the erection of dwellings, and he has put up some of the best buildings in New Bethlehem and vicinity. His work is exceedingly well done and he gives general satisfaction to all by whom he has been employed. Mr. McMillen has been a resident of South Bethlehem since 1875, and spent his entire life in this vicinity, with the exception of the years from April, 1907, to October, 1910 when he lived in Canton, Ohio. Here he was a ruling elder in the Calvary Presbyterian Church. In 1868 he built a house just across the Red Bank Creek where he lived until May 10, 1875, when he moved to South Bethlehem to the house in which he now lives, this house being the fourth dwelling built in that plot of lots. The town of South Bethlehem has steadily grown until it now has a population of five hundred inhabitants, with three schools and an election house. The largest flouring mill in Armstrong county is located here, with a daily capacity of 125 barrels, and there is an electric plant which supplies light to the two boroughs

Mr. McMillen married Dec. 24, 1868, Mary C., daughter of John and Caroline (Keller) Heasly, of Kellersburg, Madison township, Armstrong Co. Pa., and granddaughter of Henry and Mary (Reheard) Heasly, pioneers of Madison township. On the maternal side she is a granddaughter of Nicholas and Catherine Keller, natives of Germany, and also pioneers of Madison township. Eight children were born to Mr. and Mrs. McMillen, seven of whom survive: Oriole M. Married Dona Buzzard, and lives in Hoboken, Allegheny Co., Pa.; Henry H. is deceased; Clarence C. married Ada Ansell, and lives in Pasadena, Cal.; Martha Iva Pearl married Charles R. Kumpf, and lives in Canton, Ohio; Ada Blanche married John D. Beck, and lives in Summerville, Jefferson Co., Pa.; Mateer E. Married Elsie Yeany and lives in Canton, Ohio; Lillie M. Married John D. Traister, and lives at home (Her husband died. Feb. 3, 1907); Robert Fern married Lucy Stevens and lives in Canton Ohio.

Mr. and Mrs. McMillen are members of the New Bethlehem Presbyterian Church, of which he has been an elder for upward of twenty-six years. He became a member about forty years ago, and was a Sunday school teacher the greater part of the time. For about twenty-seven years he was a ruling elder, being ordained in 1885. Upon his return from Canton, where he was ruling elder also, he was reelected in the New Bethlehem Church at the first congregational meeting held after his return to New Bethlehem, and he attended many meetings of the Clarion Presbytery, as representative of his church.

Fraternally Mr. McMillen is a member of New Bethlehem Lodge, No. 725,

I. O. O. F., having been initiated Oct. 17, 1870, and has been a past officer of his lodge at least thirty years. He has represented his lodge at the Grand Lodge at the following places; Allentown, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Wilkes-Barre, Scranton and Erie, Pa. He is also an honorary member of the Jr. O. U. A. M. Mr. McMillen is deeply interested in all town affairs and has served as school director and assessor of South Bethlehem several terms. Politically he is a Republican and a strong advocate of temperance. Mr. McMillen�s home is one of the finest in South Bethlehem, showing excellent taste and judgment.

Source: Pages 746-747, Armstrong County, Pa., Her People, Past and Present, J.H. Beers & Co., 1914
Transcribed October 1998 by Doris Rizza for the Armstrong County Beers Project
Contributed for use by the Armstrong County Genealogy Project (

Armstrong County Genealogy Project Notice:
These electronic pages cannot be reproduced in any format, for any presentation, without prior written permission.

Return to the Beers Project


Return to the Armstrong County Genealogy Project

(c) Armstrong County Genealogy Project


Return to the Armstrong County Genealogy Project

(c) Armstrong County Genealogy Project