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Spann, Rebecca Miller, b. 1808
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Spann, Rebecca Miller, b. 1808
Contributed by reedsrare
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BORN: 21 June 1808
MARRIED: JONATHAN MILLER BORN: 13 August 1801 DIED: 6 September 1889
DIED: 11 June 1883 Both buried in Petty Cemetery, Atlas

#1. David Miller Born: 20 August 1820 Died 10 Otober 1865
#3. Calvin Miller Born: 1827 Married:Elizabeth Born: 22 May 1828 Died: 10 January 1891
Died: 5 August 1918
#4. Samuel L. Miller Born: 15 August 1836 Married: Martha M. Born: 18 June 1838 Died: 17 March 1875
Died: 13 March 1911
#5. Emily Rebecca Miller* Born: 27 January 1846 (perhaps 1836?), Rockport, Ill. Married: Alfred S. Pryor; 23 August 1865 -Rockport, Ill.
Born: 21 May 1833; Knoxville, Tenn. Died: 15 January 1890; Rockport, Ill. Died: 20 January 1924; Rockport, Ill.
Emily raised chickens on the farm in Rockport to supplement the very poor income provided by Alfred. A story that was related to me indicated that she sold eggs to the riverboats that stopped at Rockport. At one point, possibly in 1865-66 she traded a crate of eggs to a riverboat captain for a small Negro boy. He had been taken the child (purchased?) possibly in Louisiana for training as a cabin boy. He proved either too young, too slow, or both so Emily "bought" him. She took him to Springfield (more probably Pittsfield) to secure him his free papers. He was given the name of William Miller and continued to live (in his own room in the barn) and work on the Pryor farm.
Rockport had been a growing town and by the 1920's had its won theater as well as a furniture company. About 1920 that furniture company purchased the entire barn structure from Emily and replaced it with a steel structure. The old barn was made entirely of Black Walnut and the company wanted the lumber for furniture. Emily was very proud of the new barn.
Rockport may have suffered greatly in the depression. The Mississippi river was diverted and that placed the town 5 miles inland. Only a fraction of the town remains today. The streets are named and numbered but are barely paved with gravel. The mane cemetery is the James Taylor Cemetery just outside of town, about ¼ a mile up a gravel road. It is currently in use. I will see if I can find a sextant. 8/8/08 RLP
#2. Jonathan Miller
Born: 16 April 1823
Married: Mary (?)
Died: 28 April 1872
Infant child died 3 Jan 1881; Rockport Ill. (Bible entry does not indicate gender)
#6. Florence Miller Born:3 March 1853 Died 27 December 1905
* All the information on the Spann family came to me from Marjorie (Bossart) Williamson. It was an account written or narrated by L.D. Spann, the son of Moses Spann. Matilda (Pryor) Bossart had the account and had written on it that Rebecca Spann Miller was her Grandmother. On the second page however, she wrote that Emily was her (Matilda Pryor's) mother. The Emily referred to in that part of the narrative was Emily Spann Miller, the sister of Moses Spann and not Emily Rebecca Miller the daughter of Rebecca Spann Miller (sister to Moses). Matilda also wrote that she was a direct descendant of Jesse Spann. The Spann narrative is a bit rambling and was hard to decipher.
The 1860 census shows Emily Miller with Rebecca and Johnathan Miller at age
14. This and her death certificate prove that she was the child of Rebecca Spann and Johnathan Miller. (2004)
The 1840 census records for Pike county shows an Emily Miller living with a family other than Miller. The 1850 census shows an Emily living with another family as a domestic. By 1870, Emily was married and living with Alfred Pryor. A photograph of Emily in my possession shows her with another woman (possibly a sister, in-law, or friend) who is unidentified.
Lewis Luther Pryor, Emily's oldest son, maintained that Emily's father was one Carl (Karl?) or possibly William Mueller, later changed to Miller. Emily's mother was a Wyandot Indian princess by the name of Bluebird who changed her name to Sara in order to be married to Miller in a Christian ceremony. Not true.
RLP 1998/ 2004

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Submitted: 11/18/08 (Edited 11/23/08)

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