Family Stories

Henry Miles and Family Buried at St. Thomas Cemetery – Nelson County

Henry A. Miles and Ann Eliza Read, natives of Nelson County, procured their marriage bond June 4, 1855, and were married the next day.  My next sentence was going to be, ‘I have not found much about their early life’, when I came upon a list of marriages performed at St. Thomas Church in 1855!  Not only does it give the date of the marriage, June 5th, but the name of parents and witnesses.

Henry Miles, son of John and Sarah Miles, about 45 years old, married to Ann Eliza Read, 17 years, daughter of William and Annie Read.  Witnesses Jack Lancaster and Emily Willett.

Let’s backtrack just a bit.  Henry’s father, John Miles was born in Maryland June 6, 1775 and moved with his family to Nelson County Kentucky in the late 1700’s.  He married Sarah Howard in Nelson County February 8, 1802.

Know all men by these presents that we, John Miles and John Johnston, are held and firmly bound unto his Excellency James Garrard, Esquire, Governor of Kentucky, in the just and full sum of fifty pounds current money, to which payment well and truly to be made.  We bind ourselves, our heirs, executors, administrators, jointly and severally, firmly by these presents, sealed with our seals and dated this 8th day of February 1802.

The condition of the above obligation is such that if there should be no legal cause to obstruct a marriage shortly intended to be solemnized between the above bound John Miles and Sarah Howard, both above the age of twenty-one years, then this obligation to be void, else to remain in full force and virtue.

                                                                John Miles, John Johnston

Witness.  Frederick W. S. Grayson

Sacred to the memory of John Miles born the 6th day of June 1775, died the 29th July 1833.  St. Thomas Cemetery, Nelson County, Kentucky.

John Miles, also known as John Barton Miles, died July 29, 1833.  Could this possibly have been from cholera?  June and July of 1833 were the dreaded months when that disease ran rampant in Kentucky.  He left no will, an indication that perhaps he died suddenly.  He was buried in St. Thomas Cemetery.  His gravestone is quite spectacular.  The upper portion is richly carved with flowers, an urn in the center with a dove carrying an olive leaf perched on top.

Sarah Miles, born February 20, 1782, died November 15, 1860.

Sarah Howard Miles lived another 23 years, passing away November 15, 1860.

This is one of the inserts in the walkway to the church, telling its history through the years.  Could Sarah Howard have been the daughter of Thomas and Ann Howard, who in 1795 constructed a log house where St. Thomas Church is now located, and where neighbors joined together for worship before the church was built?

In the 1860 census for Nelson County, and five years after their marriage, Henry is listed as 43 and Ann Eliza is 20.  Two children lived with the couple, Sallie M., 4, and Kate A., 1.  Susan Miles, 80, possibly Henry’s mother, also lived with the family – she was born in Maryland.  Henry’s mother was Sarah, but the census taker could have mistaken the name; she could also be another relative.

Mary, born April 20, 1868, died April 27, 1868.  Kate, born October 1, 1857, died December 23, 1857.  Children of H. A. and A. E. Miles.

According to a gravestone in St. Thomas Cemetery in the rural area of the county just south of Bardstown, another daughter was born in the early years of their marriage.  Catherine A. was born October 1, 1857 and died December 23rd of that year.  In 1868 daughter Mary Sue lived for seven days.

Catherine A., born October 1, 1857, died December 23, 1857.  Mary Sue, born April 20, 1868, died April 27, 1868.  Katie, born November 20, 1858, died March 27, 1870.  Maggie D., born June 11, 1874, died December 2, 1879.  Children of H. A. & A. E. Miles.

Two other daughters died in the 1870’s.  Even though the two infants had a gravestone they are included on this stone for their older sisters.

Our Kate, daughter of H. A. & A. E. Miles, born November 20, 1858, died march 27, 1870.

This one, for daughter Kate, who lived to be twelve, is an individual stone.  Henry and Ann Eliza must have grieved for these little girls who died far too soon.

In the 1870 census the family consists of Henry, 52; Ann Eliza, 32; Sallie M., 14; Fannie, 9; Lillie, 7; Josie, 5; Eliza, 3; and Annie, 1.  In 1880 Annie is listed as Hadenia, and two other children were born – William Henry, 8, the only son; and Mamie or Manie, 3.

H. A. Miles, born April 12, 1817, died August 22, 1889.

Henry Miles’ will is dated June 17, 1889 and was probated September 9th of that year.  His illness must have been sudden and swift.

Will of Henry A. Miles

Nelson County Will Book 19, Page 266

In the name of God, amen.

I, Henry A. Miles, of Nelson County, Kentucky, do make this my will.

I give to my beloved wife Ann Eliza Miles all my real and personal estate, cash, notes and shares in action for the period of her natural life, subject to the payment of my just debts; the farm to be a home for her and the children of our marriage; at her death to pass to our children in such portions as held by the law of descent and distribution.  I also appoint her my executrix and guardian of our children and request that no security be required of her by the Court.

Witness my hand this June 17th, 1889.

                                                                                                 H. A. Miles

Witness, C. T. Atkinson, Rowan Kurtz

State of Kentucky, Nelson County Court

September Term, September 9th, 1889

A writing purporting to be the last will and testament of H. A. Miles, deceased, late of Nelson County, Kentucky, was this day produced in open Court and duly proven by the oath of C. T. Atkinson, one of the subscribing witnesses thereto, who also proved the attestation of Rowan Kurtz, the other subscribing witness thereto, whereupon it is ordered that said paper be recorded as the last will and testament of H. A. Miles, deceased, which is done.

                                                Att. W. J. Dalniazzo, Clerk

Ann Eliza Read Miles, 1839-1920.

Ann Eliza Read Miles lived another twenty-one years after her husband died.  At the time of his death there were at least eight children aged 12 through 33; some of the girls may have married by that date.  She bore at least thirteen children and lived to be eighty years old.

William Henry Miles married Mary Emma Wilson December 20, 1896, at St. Patrick Church in Jefferson County, Kentucky.

William Henry Miles, 1871-1920.

Son William Henry Miles is also buried at St. Thomas.

Mary E. Wilson, wife of Henry Miles, August 5, 1873 – June 23, 1911.

Mary Emma is buried at the side of her husband.

Philip E. Miles was born March 27, 1814, and died February 1, 1850.

Philip E. Miles was brother to Henry A. Miles

3 replies »

  1. Wonderful accounting of this cemetery. There is a huge amount of Kentucky history attached to this property.
    The Church here was built as a replica of St Mary’s Chapel on Paca Street in Baltimore , and was the location of
    the first Bishop of the Catholic Church west of the Allegheny Mountains, Bishop Benedict J. Flaget. Mr & Mrs Thomas
    Howard donated the land the Church and Cemetery occupy to the Bishop as it was also the first seminary west of the Allegheny Mountains.

  2. Thanks so much for all this information. These Mileses and Howards are my ancestors. I think we can rule out Sarah Howard being the daughter of Thomas and Ann. They did not have any children. Webb made a mistake when he said that Thomas Howard was the son of Edward Howard and that Thomas inherited the farm that was left to the bishop from Edward. Thomas died prior to Edward and in his Will he enumerated where he purchased every tract that went into St. Thomas Farm. We think that Sarah Howard was the daughter of Edward Howard. My 3x gr grandfather, William Howard, sold property to Sarah and John Barton Miles. In 1812 (2 yrs. after Thomas Howard’s death) Edward Howard gave permission for “my daughter” Susannah Howard to marry Charles Boone. My 3x gr grandfather, William Howard, signed the bond. Was he Sarah and Susannah’s older brother?? John Johnson, who signed the marriage bond for John Barton Miles, was his brother-in-law. He married Dorothy Miles. They are my 3x gr grandparents.

Any thoughts?

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