Thomas W. Miller

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Thomas W. Miller
Thomas W. Miller.jpg
Chairman of The American Legion
National Legislative Committee
In office
1919 – 1920
Preceded byOffice established
Succeeded byJohn T. Taylor
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Delaware's At-large district
In office
March 4, 1915 – March 3, 1917
Preceded byFranklin Brockson
Succeeded byAlbert F. Polk
Personal details
Thomas Woodnutt Miller

(1886-06-26)June 26, 1886
Wilmington, Delaware, U.S.
DiedMay 5, 1973(1973-05-05) (aged 86)
Reno, Nevada, U.S.
Political partyRepublican
Alma materYale University (BA)
Military service
Allegiance United States
Branch/serviceUnited States Army
Years of service1917–1919
RankUS-O5 insignia.svg Lieutenant Colonel
Battles/warsWorld War I
AwardsPurple Heart ribbon.svg Purple Heart

Thomas Woodnutt Miller (June 26, 1886 – May 5, 1973) was an American politician serving as a Republican U.S. Representative for Delaware's At-large congressional district. He was a veteran of World War I and a member of The American Legion, who served as a National Legislative Committee chairman.

Early life and education

Thomas Woodnutt Miller was born in Wilmington, Delaware, son of Governor Charles R. 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.

World War I

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 Offensive 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 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.

Conviction and parole

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.[1] The conviction concerned Miller's service as Alien Property Custodian and the effort by Metallgesellschaft AG of Germany to overturn the U.S. government's confiscation of its interest in the American Metal Company during World War I.[2] He served 18 months in prison. He was paroled in 1929 and pardoned by United States President Herbert Hoover in 1933.

Later life and death

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 to 1959, and from 1967 to 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. He died in Reno, Nevada on May 5, 1973, and was buried in the Masonic Memorial Gardens in Reno.

Personal life

His nephew, Clement W. Miller was a U.S. Representative from California from 1959 until 1962.[citation needed]


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

Public offices
Office Type Location Began office Ended office Notes
Secretary of State of Delaware Executive Dover 1913 1915 Delaware
U.S. Representative Legislature Washington March 4, 1915 March 3, 1917
United States Congressional service
Dates Congress Chamber Majority President Committees Class/District
1915–1917 64th U.S. House Democratic Woodrow Wilson At-large
Election results
Year Office Subject Party Votes % Opponent Party Votes %
1914 U.S. Representative Thomas W. Miller Republican 22,922 50% Franklin Brockson Democratic 20,681 45%
1916 U.S. Representative Thomas W. Miller Republican 24,202 47% Albert F. Polk Democratic 24,395 48%

See also


  1. ^ Time, March 31, 1930, "National Affairs: Ohio Gangster"
  2. ^ Miller v. United States, 24 F.2d 353 (2nd Cir. 1928).

Further reading

  • Martin, Roger A. (1984). A History of Delaware Through its Governors. Wilmington, Delaware: McClafferty Press.

External links

U.S. House of Representatives
Preceded by
Franklin Brockson
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Delaware's at-large congressional district

Succeeded by
Albert F. Polk
Non-profit organization positions
New office Chairman of The American Legion National Legislative Committee
1919 – 1920
Succeeded by
John T. Taylor
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