Hugh Miller


Source: Pickering Township Oral History Project Interviews. Audio Reel
RG-17-44-0-10. Copyright 1972, Archives of Ontario. Used with permission.
As told by: Hugh Miller.

Stan Whiston and David Nasby of the Pickering Township Oral History Project interviewed Hugh Miller on June 21, 1972 about the houses built at Thistle Ha’. This recording is several copies removed from the original reel-to-reel tape, so the sound quality is poor.

It is said that John Miller remembered snow on the bed blankets on a few winter mornings when living in the log house.

Hugh Miller dug a 14-foot hole for the current cistern beside the east wall of the house. Curious about the depth of the stone foundation, he also dug an anchor-post hole beside the wall at the bottom of the excavation. He failed to reach the footings. So the stone wall extends at least 18 feet below ground.

Source: Pickering Township Oral History Project Interviews. Audio Reel
RG-17-44-0-10. Copyright 1972, Archives of Ontario. Used with permission.
As told by: Hugh Miller.

Stan Whiston and David Nasby of the Pickering Township Oral History Project interviewed Hugh Miller on June 21, 1972 about the fairs attended by the Millers. The interview was done in the dining room at Thistle Ha’; you can hear the ticking grandfather clock in the background.

Hugh Miller often showed Thistle Ha’ visitors a fancy, well-worn cane given to his grandfather, and told its story below. The cane was destroyed in the house fire at Thistle Ha’ in 1985.
As told by: Hugh Miller

A local widow came to Thistle Ha’ and asked John Miller for help. Her son had just been convicted of murder, and was sentenced to hang. She explained that two men and her fifteen-year-old son had broken into a farmer’s house in the middle of the night, looking for liquor. The farmer had come downstairs to investigate the noise, and in the ensuing struggle, the farmer was struck and killed.

She felt her son’s penalty was too severe: he was a youth who had become influenced by bad men since her husband’s death, he was a bystander during the fight at the farmhouse, and the family couldn’t afford to pay for an adequate defense at his trial. John Miller said he would see what he could do.

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