Miller home stands on history

Published 6:08 pm Wednesday, June 24, 2009

By Staff
I was going through some of my material and found this and thought you might be interested in it and I also have a couple of old photos to go with it.
the following account of the T.R. Miller home located on Belleville Aveue was orignially written in 1942.
The present T.R. Miller home, now occupied by Mr. Miller’s son, John Richard Miller, was built 1905-06. This home was built upon the foundation of the old home built about 1887 when Mr. Miller moved to Brewton, from Mason, about 20 miles away. Mr. Ausfeld, of Montgomery, Ala., was the architect and Jehle Brothers of Montgomery, were contractors.
Thomas Richard Miller, was a pioneer lumberman of this section and selected the best lumber and timber that could be cut to go in the home. He lived there until his death, May 23, 1914. His wife, Alice Collins Miller, continued to live there, even after her children married and moved away, until her death, November 27, 1941.
There was a damaging fire about 1924, caused by a defective chimney. Only the roof was destroyed, but there was much damage by water. Mrs. Miller, remodeled the home and redecorated the interior at this time. She made a large drawing room out of the old parlor and sitting room combined.
She also added a large sleeping porch upstairs and downstairs.
Much of the work done in the interior of the home after the fire was done by the Strassell Company, of Louisville, Kentucky. They also furnished some of the new furniture ad draperies. Furniture in this home was collected from many parts of the country over a long period of years.
The large paintings in the home were done y Hal Morrison, of Atlanta, Georgia. The portrait of Thomas Richard Miller was painted by Charles Frederick Neegale, of Marietta, Georgia. There were many objects of art, beautiful china, glass, and silver, which Mrs. Miller collected on her wide travels and several trips abroad.
On the stair landing is a stained glass window, resembling the first steam-driven saw mill of Thomas Richard Miller.
The gardens of this home were first landscaped by Pfhingstl, of Montgomery. This landscape work was the first to be done in Brewton, and Mr. Washburn of Bolling, Alabama, did some landscape work later.
The present garden is filled with many beautiful camellias and azaleas. Mrs. Miller was an ardent gardener and had flowers blooming at all times of the year. Most of the time she had flower arrangements artistically placed about the home. She delighted in sharing her flowers with her friends.
This was written June 1, 1942 by Iva Lee Miller McMillan, the daughter of Thomas Richard Miller and Alice Collins Miller.
I hope you’re enjoying these trips down the history trail. If there is a subject you’d like for me to examine for you, I’d be happy to try. Just give me a call at 867-4876 or drop me a line by e-mail at
Until next week, happy hunting.

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