Glendale, California Biographies

Harry M. Miller

        Harry M. Miller was the first City Marshal and Fire Chief of Glendale who gave all of his time to the duties of these positions. He was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, December 30, 1877, a son of Martin and Emily (Welch) Miller. He received a common school education, and at the age of fourteen went out into to world to make his own living. He farmed in the middle west until the Spanish-American War broke out, and then enlisted in the Fifteenth Cavalry, Troop B and was sent to the Presidio at San Francisco, where he was in training for some time before being sent to Honolulu, and from there to the Philippines. He was in the service for two and one-half years, and was advanced to the rank of Sergeant some time before he was discharged at Manila. In the Philippines, some time was spent selling farm implements, after which he went to China and was employed as a foreman of construction work on the Chinese-American railroad until his health failed and he was taken to a hospital in Hong Kong and was ill for two months and five days. He then went to Japan, where he sojourned for a short time, then embarked for the States, landing at Seattle, Washington.

        He secured a position with the Government, and was sent to Port Townsend as an overseer of construction and later to Fort Worden in the same capacity, remaining in the employ of the Government for one year. The Southern Pacific Railroad claimed him for construction work, and he remained with them until he came to Glendale in 1906. He worked at his trade as a carpenter until he was elected City Marshal in 1908. He was three times re-elected to the same office, and during these years was also Chief of the Fire Department. In 1914 he resigned as City Marshal and Fire Chief to become Justice of Peace for Burbank township, which position he most creditably filled until he resigned in February 1922. As City Marshal and Justice of Peace, Mr. Miller served with a devotion to duty and persistency in bringing wrong doers to justice. To better qualify himself for the position of Justice of Peace he took up the study of law, and also took the American Extension University’s correspondence course in law. In 1919, he began dealing in real estate, and is now devoting all of his time to that business. He is a member of the California State and the Glendale Realty Boards, the Elks Club and the Chamber of Commerce. He is a stockholder in the Glendale State Bank.

        At Glendale, on July 8, 1912, Mr. Miller married Isabelle W. Ray, a native of Scotland. They have one son, Ray Melvin Miller.

From History of Glendale and Vicinity by John Calvin Sherer. The Glendale Publishing Company, c. 1922 F. M. Broadbooks and J. C. Sherer. pgs. 460-462. A photograph of H.M. Miller appears p. 460.