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Earl Miller
1912 - 2004


 
 
 
 Earl Miller Article by The Record-Argus Newspaper (Greenville, PA)
Legendary Local Newsman Dies
Earl Miller's title, Record-Argus Editor, retired with him in 1977
Article written by Natalie Kennedy  Record-Argus Our Town Editor / Friday October 15, 2004.

C. Earl Miller, 21-year editor of The Record-Argus whose employment with the newspaper spanned five decades, was remembered Thursday in glowing terms as "a newspaperman's newspaperman" by Publisher Bob Bracey.
Miller died Wednesday night. He was 92.
A lifelong Greenville resident, he jumped head first into the profession which would make him a local legend. His Record-Argus position, coupled with a deep rooted interest in his hometown, made him a well respected pillar of the community.
"Earl was the heart of Greenville and the area," said Miller's longtime friend Harvey Childs, Bail USA chairman and director of marketing. "He had a super knowledge of sports and history."  
That knowledge of sports landed him his first editor's position here: He was sports editor for 14 years.
"He was very good," said Coach Ed Snyder, former coach at Penn High School, from which Miller graduated in 1930.
I don't know how to express it. He was a nice fellow to work with. I felt he was very into the profession which fair in all of his writing," said Snyder. "He promoted the sport and he got people interested."
Miller's lifelong friend Dr. Frank McElree agreed.
"I remember him running up and down the fields at the football games and at the basketball games, taking notes and getting the guys' numbers from their jerseys," said McElree.
But sports was just part of  this multi-faceted man's experiences.

When he graduated, Miller had dreams of studying fine arts in college. He worked that first summer at the newspaper, then left. for Pittsburgh, attending Carnegie Mellon University for two years. When he ran out of money, he came back to the newspaper - and stayed for 45 years.

"He learned reporting at the knee of The Record- Argus," McElree said. "He's been ethical and thorough in is chosen profession."

Writing everything from town council stories to society and sporting events, Miller worked his way up through the ranks of a staff of 35 - including carriers.

Depending on the season, Miller would staff as many of the games as he could, cover
school board and town meetings as well as club events, all in a day's work.
Because of his hard work and devotion to his career and his community, he went on to become city editor and news editor before being named editor in 1956. He succeeded John L. Morrison, longtime editor, owner and publisher.  After John Morrison and his father, Levi Morrison, who converted the paper to a daily in the late 1890s, he became only the third editor in the daily's history. That title retired with him in 1977.
"He has no peer, no equal reporting. It's just a huge loss," McElree said.

Childs added, "He will be missed. He was something else, a very unusual man and a good friend. I spent a lot of time with him. We met when I started in the bail bond business. He was curious about the bail bond business and always gave me good press.

He was always happy when he saw me write a few bonds around Greenville. He used to stop around maybe once a week, and I always had time for Earl," Childs said. "Even the way he bounced around and his personality - he was very invigorating to Bail USA.
"He was a stamp collector, an autograph collector and a romantic," he continued. "There are very few people in
the history of this area who have been like Earl Miller. He was sharp and smart to the very end."

Among the many hats Miller wore was resident historian. Having descended from two of Greenville's early families, he was a student of local history and helped found Greenville Area Historical Society as a charter member.

Greenville Area Historical Society member Tom Hodge recalled Miller as a great storyteller.
"He gave one or two of our lecture series talks," Hodge said. "He gave a very interesting talk on The Record-Argus. And he told a lot of amusing stories about people he met. And he liked to talk of Camp Reynolds. He spoke of Joe Lewis being down there, too, and mentioned briefly the race riots in 1944."
Camp Reynolds, Miller said in a 1999 interview with this newspaper, "was a story in itself," adding the camp's paper, The Camp Reynolds Victory News, was also published at The Record-Argus.
No doubt he would soon have shared some fascinating tidbits with the public on that topic; Miller died exactly seven days before his scheduled lecture on the beginnings of Camp Reynolds as part of the Greenville Area Historical Society Lecture Series.
His writings on local history include the 50th anniversary of Camp Reynolds in 1992.

Always civic minded, during the 1960s, while serving in. Greenville Business Men's Association, Miller helped to shape the borough during its heyday.

"Those of us who worked in the historical era - the 1960s and redevelopment of downtown Greenville - we never
could have done it without Earl Miller and his work with the newspaper," McElree said. "We all owe Earl Miller lot. You think Greenville is a dismal place today - Greenville wouldn't be half of what it is today without Earl Miller at the newspaper."
Though Miller's knowledge of local history is quite possibly unmatched, he also dabbled in world history and set forth collecting autographs of the world's best-known individuals
"He started collecting autographs around 1934,"  Childs said. "Back in those days, when you asked for the autographs of these famous people, they sent them back to you.
"His collection goes back as far as the Duke and Duchess of Windsor, to Francisco
Franco - and he took a deep interest in astronauts and in space. He had a fantastic col-
lection of all the space people.
"Miller's collection contained 2,800 autographs. He later sold the collection to Childs.

"When he had it up for sale and he had his reasons for selling it - I didn't want to see it get out of Greenville. I bought it. I hope in the future, we'll find a place in Greenville where we can keep it.

Miller's legacy extended into his retirement, when he often stopped by the newspaper office to see what was going on.
"He would come in and look things up in the files. He was always very interested in issues and things," said former Record-Argus Society Editor Yvonne Raymond. "He wanted to keep up on what was going on. He was very good at pointing out potential stories for us to check into."
"Like good newspeople, lie couldn't let it go," she said of his nose for news, adding journalism was in his blood. "He always had his nose in the business, even after retirement. He was very good at keeping track of what was going on in town and letting us know."
To say hell be missed is an understatement, many noted.
"His loss is an irreparable loss to the Greenville area," McElree said. "He's been a preeminent in the newspaper reporting business for the last 70 years."
Those nearly 70 years are ones he spent with his wife, the former Elta Bernice Mayberry, whom he married in 1935. She survives, as do his children, Gary Earl Miller and his wife, Tillie, of Erie; his daughter, Mrs. Thomas (Vanetta Lynn) Frampton of Pittsburgh; 10 grand children; three great-grandchildren; and four step great-grandchildren.
Frank Frampton, former publisher of The Record-Argus, now living in Wayland, Mass., praised Miller.

"Earl and I have been friends since the sixth grade. We graduated from high school together in 1930. With Earl serving as editor of the paper when I was publisher, I knew we were producing a quality product. He knew what was right and did what was right. I will miss him."

But of the career he loved so much, Miller best summed it up in his 1977 farewell column.

"From the sidelines I have observed that few non-journalistic careers appeared to offer as vast a range of opportunities. Newspaper work today provides the same excitement, the same challenges and the same satisfactions as when I was a cub reporter. Its field of public service has remained undiminished with the passage of time," Miller wrote. "Thanks for the memories, everyone, I will cherish them forever."

- 30 -
The symbol -30- in earlier days of newspapering meant a story was proofed and ready for publication. It was part of the daily production cycle during Miller's tenure as editor.