Thomas W. Miller, U.S. Congress

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Thomas Woodnutt Miller

Birthplace: Wilmington, New Castle County, Delaware, United States
Death: Died in Reno, Washoe County, Nevada, United States
Immediate Family:

Son of Charles R. Miller, Governor and Abigail Morgan "Abbie" Miller
Brother of Margaretta Miller and Clement Woodnutt Miller

Managed by: Private User
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About Thomas W. Miller, U.S. Congress

Thomas Woodnutt Miller (June 26, 1886 – May 5, 1973) was an American businessman, lawyer and politician, from Wilmington, Delaware, and Reno, Nevada. He was a veteran of World War I and a member of the Republican Party, who served as U. S. Representative from Delaware.

Early life and family

Miller was born in Wilmington, Delaware, son of Governor Charles R. Miller and Abigail Morgan Woodnutt Miller. He attended the Hotchkiss School and graduated from Yale University in 1908. He was initially employed as a steel roller by the Bethlehem Steel Company in 1908 and 1909.

Political career

Miller worked as secretary to U.S. Representative William H. Heald from 1910 until 1912, and during this period studied law in Washington, D.C.. He was appointed by his father, Governor Charles R. Miller, to the position of Delaware Secretary of State from 1913 until 1915.

Miller was elected to the United States House of Representatives in 1914, defeating incumbent Democratic U.S. Representative Franklin Brockson. During this term, he served in the Republican minority in the 64th Congress. Seeking reelection in 1916, he lost to Democrat Albert F. Polk, a lawyer from Georgetown. Miller served from March 4, 1915, until March 3, 1917, during the administration of U.S. President Woodrow Wilson.

Military career

When the United States entered World War I in 1917, Miller enlisted as a private in the Infantry of the United States Army, and served in France with the Seventy-ninth Division. He was cited by General John Pershing for "especially meritorious and conspicuous service" in the Meuse-Argonne campaign and awarded the Purple Heart for his service. For this he was promoted to Lieutenant Colonel, and served until discharged in September 1919. Miller was a founder and incorporator of the American Legion and vice chairman of the Paris caucus in March 1919. He was also Alien Property Custodian from 1921 until 1925 and a member of the American Battle Monuments Commission from 1923 until 1926.

Later life

Miller served in the administration of United States President Warren G. Harding, but was convicted in 1927 of conspiring to defraud the U.S. government. The conviction concerned Miller's service as Alien Property Custodian. He served 18 months in prison. He was paroled in 1929 and pardoned by United States President Herbert Hoover in 1933. At this point Miller moved to Reno, Nevada, where he would spend the rest of his life. There he became the founder of Nevada State parks system and served as chairman of the Nevada State Park Commission in 1935, 1936, from 1953–1959, and from 1967-1973. He also continued his activity in veteran’s affairs as staff field representative of the United States Veterans' Employment Service from 1945 until 1957.

Death and legacy

Miller died in Reno, Nevada, and is buried in the Masonic Memorial Gardens in Reno. His nephew, Clement W. Miller was a U.S. Representative from California from 1959 until 1962.


Elections are held the first Tuesday after November 1. U.S. Representatives took office March 4 and have a two-year term.

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Thomas W. Miller, U.S. Congress's Timeline

June 28, 1886
Wilmington, New Castle County, Delaware, United States
May 5, 1973
Age 86
Reno, Washoe County, Nevada, United States