“Remember, remember always, that all of us, and you and I especially, are descended from immigrants and revolutionists."
― Franklin D. Roosevelt
San Diego, California was incorporated in 1850, the same year California became a state. The original Old Town was located several miles inland. In the late 1860s, Alonzo Horton promoted a move to New Town on the bay. New Town grew quickly and became the city center. In 1915, San Diego hosted the Panama-California Exposition.
The Province of Upper Canada was established in 1791 to accommodate Loyalist refugees from the United States. It included all of Southern Ontario and part of Northern Ontario.
John Wilson Miller was born on October 28, 1842. He was born in Queen's County, Ireland. His parents were Thomas Miller and Hester Wilson. He immigrated to Canada about 1847 when he was about five years old.
At the time of the 1871 Ontario Census, he was a ship's carpenter. From 1892 to 1893 he was a rancher and from 1895 to 1904 he was shipbuilder/carpenter for Spreckles Brothers. John was a Mason. He took out his naturalization papers in June, 1895.
He died on February 28, 1905 at age 62. A letter from his daughter-in-law, Nellie Long said that he died of a ruptured appendix. "He was taken sick on a Saturday, and was taken to the hospital. Instead of operating then they put it off until Sunday and it proved too late; the appendix ruptured."
He is buried in lot 20, section I.O.O.F, block 47 in the Mount Hope Cemetery, 3850 Imperial Avenue, San Diego in the Odd Fellows Plot. The Reverend J. E. Hoick of the First Lutheran church officiated at the service. He is buried with Genevieve Jones who was his wife, Victoria's, sister and his daughter Hester Johnson.
Miller Family Plot
Photo taken 1915
The peak period of Irish immigration to Canada was during the Great Famine between 1845-1849. Most immigrants went to Canada because the fares were lower. Ships that reached Canada lost many passengers and even more died while in quarantine. From the reception station at Grosse-Ile, most survivors were sent to Montréal. The typhus outbreak of 1847 and 1848 killed many of the new immigrants. An economic boom following their arrival allowed many men to work in on the expanding railroad, in construction, in the logging industry, or on farms.
The Independent Order of Odd Fellows (I.O.O.F.) is a charitable, fraternal organization that started in Baltimore, Maryland, on April 26, 1819 when members of the Order from England instituted Washington Lodge No. 1.
The Great Famine or the Irish Potato Famine was between 1845 and 1852. About a million people died and a million more emigrated. It was caused by a potato blight. The famine permanently changed Ireland.
The first European settlements in Ontario were after the American Revolution when 5,000 loyalists left the new United States.
Death of John W. Miller San Diego Union, March 1, 1905
John W. Miller, an old resident of this city died yesterday morning at his home, No. 1633 India Street. The deceased was 62 years of age and for many years had been in the employ of the Spreckles Bros. Commerical company. He is survived by his widow, two sons and two daughters. Funeral services will be held this morning at ? o'clock from Bradley & Woolman's parlors, Rev. J. E. Hoick officiating.
MILLER--Died in this city [San Diego] Feb. 28 , John Wilson Miller, ship carpenter, a native of Ireland, aged 62 years. Friends are respectfully invited to attend the services from Bradley and Woolman's parlors, cor. Seventh and C, at 9 a.m. Wednesday, March 1st. The Rev. Mr. Hoick will officiate. Interment at Mt. Hope cemetery.