Texas Archival Resources Online

TABLE OF CONTENTS


Overview

Biographical Note

Scope and Contents of the Collection

Arrangement of the Collection

Restrictions

Access Terms

Related Material

Administrative Information

Description of Series

Jack Miller’s personal and military life, 1920-1999

The U.S.S. Miller (DE-410) and the search for Jack Miller’s remains, 1944-2004

The World War II Memorial Plaza at SMU, 1942-1999

Audio and Video, 1942-1992

Memorabilia, 1934-1999

Southern Methodist University

Jack Miller papers

A Guide to the Collection



Overview

Creator: Miller, Jack, 1920-1942
Title: Jack Miller papers
Inclusive Dates: 1920-2008
Abstract: The collection illustrates the life and times of Lt. Jack Miller, a United States Marine from Dallas, Texas, who served in the Pacific theater during World War II. Records cover the years between 1920 and 2004, with the bulk of materials from 1920 to 1945. The collection provides insight into conditions and operations during military action on the island of Guadalcanal. Content related to Jack Miller's military service accounts for two-thirds of the collection and includes photographs, letters, newspaper clippings, transcripts, audio recordings and video recordings. Additionally, there is information about the U.S.S. Jack Miller (DE-410), a United States Navy Destroyer Escort that was launched in early 1944 in honor of Miller. The remainder of the collection is divided between material on the Miller family's unsuccessful quest to locate Miller's remains over more than sixty years and material on the World War II Memorial Plaza at Southern Methodist University.
Accession No: A2004.0001
Extent: 4 boxes (3 linear feet)
Language: Material is in English
Repository DeGolyer Library, Southern Methodist University

Biographical Note

Jack Miller was the second son of Henry S. Miller, Sr. and his wife, Carmen Miller. The Millers first gained prominence in Dallas, Texas from the real estate and commerce dealings of Sam Miller around the start of the twentieth century. Sam Miller’s son, Henry S. Miller, Sr., went on to become a key player in the Dallas real estate industry as well. Upon Henry S. Miller, Sr.'s death, his eldest son, Henry S. Miller, Jr., Jack Miller's brother, assumed control of the family business. The business remains active in the Dallas real estate market and has since expanded nationally.

Jack Miller graduated with a B.A. in Commerce from Southern Methodist University in 1938. Afterwards, he joined the United States Marine Corps and completed officer training at Quantico, Virginia. He voluntarily joined the 2nd Marine Battalion, known as "Carlson’s Raiders," named after its commanding officer, Colonel Evans Carlson. Lt. Miller served as a "Raider" for 18 months before being killed in action on the island of Guadalcanal, in the Solomon Islands, on December 4, 1942. Because his death came in a "forward area," Miller was buried on the side of a trail. He posthumously received a Presidential unit citation. For his heroism, he was also awarded the Navy Cross, the highest honor the Navy can bestow.

After his death, the Miller family, including his brother, Henry S. Miller, Jr., and his sister, Dr. Carmen Miller Michael, began the process of locating Jack Miller’s remains. As of 2005, their search has been unsuccessful.

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Scope and Contents of the Collection

The collection illustrates the life and times of a United States Marine who saw serious action in the Pacific theater of World War II. It provides insight into conditions and operations during military action on the island of Guadalcanal.

Content related to Jack Miller’s military service accounts for two-thirds of the collection and includes photographs, letters, newspaper clippings, transcripts, VHS tapes, eight millimeter film, 78 rpm records, a wax record and an audio cassette tape. The collection also contains material covering Miller’s early childhood, including photographs and school assignments.

Additionally, there is information regarding the U.S.S. Jack Miller, a United States Navy Destroyer Escort that was launched in early 1944 in honor of Miller.

The papers also include material on the Miller family’s quest to locate Miller’s remains. The search has continued for over sixty years and as of 2005, has been unsuccessful. The collection also contains information about the World War II Memorial Plaza, which is located east of the Laura Bush Promenade in front of Fondren Library at Southern Methodist University. It was dedicated by the Miller family in 1999 and serves as the University’s tribute to its students who lost their lives in the war.

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Arrangement of the Collection

The collection is organized into five series:
Series I: Jack Miller’s personal and military life, 1920-1999
Series II: The U.S.S. Miller (DE-410) and the search for Jack Miller’s remains, 1944-2004
Series III: The World War II Memorial Plaza at SMU, 1942-1999
Series IV: Audio and Video, 1942-1992
Series V: Memorabilia, 1934-1999

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Restrictions

Access to Collection:

Collection is open for research use.

Publication Rights:

Permission to publish materials must be obtained from the Director of the DeGolyer Library.

Copyright Statement:

It is the responsibility of the user to obtain copyright authorization.

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Access Terms

This collection is indexed under the following terms in the Southern Methodist University Libraries' online catalog. Researchers desiring related materials may search the catalog using these terms.
Miller, Jack, 1920-1942.
Miller family.
Jack Miller (Destroyer escort)
United States. Marine Corps. Marine Raider Battalion, 2nd.
World War, 1939-1945--Personal narratives, American.
Marines--United States.
World War II Memorial Plaza (Southern Methodist University).
Miller, Henry S., 1890-1968.
Miller, Carmen Jablow, 1892-1990.
Michael, Carmen Miller.

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Related Material

For additional material pertaining to the Miller family, see the Henry S. and Juanita Miller papers.

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Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Jack Miller papers, DeGolyer Library, Southern Methodist University

Acquisition Information

Gift, Carmen Miller Michael, 2004.

Processing Information

The Jack Miller papers were received in manila folders and envelopes, loosely categorized by topic. During their processing, the collection was divided into separate files. Folded documents were flattened, and the papers were arranged chronologically by topic, placed in acid-free folders, and stored in acid-free boxes.

Processed by

Parker Hevron, 2005

Encoded by

Lara Corazalla, 2006

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Detailed Description of the Collection

 

Series I:
Jack Miller’s personal and military life, 1920-1999
1 Box

This series contains letters, photographs, school assignments, military records, and correspondence illustrating the life of Jack Miller. The items range from a school assignment completed in crayon in the 1920s to the Army telegram informing the Millers of their son’s death on Guadalcanal Island in December 1942. The papers are arranged into folders by type and then placed in chronological order.
Box Folder
1 1 School assignments and drawings, circa 1925-1935
2 Memberships and citations, 1934-1941
3 United States Marine Corps graduation, 1936-1942
4 Photos of Jack Miller (Marine Corps) and Photos of Miller’s fellow Marine officers, undated
5 Photos and negatives of Jack Miller, 1920-1940
6 Photos (duplicates) of fellow Marine officers, i.e. LeFrancois, Plumley, Lamb and various others, 1942
7 Photos of Jack Miller in uniform (forward area, Guadalcanal), undated
8 Letters home, July 1940-November 1942
9 Copies of letters to Jack Miller from his family, 1941-1942
10 Copy of Army telegram notifying the Millers of Jack Miller’s death, 1942
11 Letters of Condolence regarding Jack Miller’s death
Box Folder
1 12 Newspaper clippings regarding Jack Miller’s service and death, 1940-1944, 1972
13 Military citation material, 1942-1949
14 Memorial service brochures and letters, 1942-1999
15 Letters to and from Henry S. Miller, Jr.
16 Transcript of Wrigley’s "The First Line" broadcast on CBS radio, Jan. 11, 1945

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Series II:
The U.S.S. Miller (DE-410) and the search for Jack Miller’s remains, 1944-2004
1.5 Boxes

This series contains material related to the launch of the U.S.S. Miller (DE-410) in 1944. The U.S.S. Miller was a U.S. Navy Destroyer Escort named after Jack Miller. Additionally, this series chronicles the search for Miller’s remains on Guadalcanal, which was intense for the first ten years after Miller’s death, started to wane for the next thirty, and then intensified again after being led by Miller’s sister, Carmen Miller Michael. Moreover, the series contains information regarding the lives of several of Miller’s acquaintances from "Carlson’s Raiders," and the relationships they formed with Carmen Miller Michael. The papers are arranged into folders by subject.
Box Folder
1 17 Correspondence regarding the U.S.S. Miller and its launch
18 Clippings and photos regarding the U.S.S. Miller
19 Internet printouts regarding Jack Miller, Col. Carlson and the U.S.S. Miller
20 Correspondence between H.S.M, Sr. and Philip M. Morgan, May 1946-May 1947
21 Correspondence with Bill Fisher regarding Vouza trip to Guadalcanal, 1992-1993
22 Correspondence between Lt. Col. Joseph Mueller and Carmen Miller Michael regarding Jack Miller’s gravesite, 1981-1987
23 Maps of Guadalcanal, undated
24 Correspondence regarding Jack Miller’s gravesite, 1942-1945
25 Correspondence regarding Jack Miller’s gravesite, 1945-1989
26 Military personnel records received by family, 1989
27 Military personnel records received by family, 2008
Box Folder
2 1 Pamphlets and brochures from the United States Marine Corps, undated
2 Copies of correspondence between Carmen Miller Michael and Rep. Steve Bartlett (R-TX) regarding Jack Miller’s gravesite, 1988-1989
3 Correspondence between Carmen Miller Michael and Jim Gardner regarding the poem, "Ambush!" 1998
4 United States Marine Raider Association, 1981-1998
5 Correspondence between Carmen Miller Michael and A.V.K. Gary (USMC, ret.), 1988-1998
6 Victor Maghakian and the film, "Gung Ho," 1942-1996
7 Clippings and brochures regarding present-day Guadalcanal, 1982-2004

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Series III:
The World War II Memorial Plaza at SMU, 1942-1999
1 Box

This series consists primarily of correspondence and documents related to the World War II Memorial Plaza at Southern Methodist University. The Memorial Plaza is located on the north side of Fondren Library, directly adjacent to the Laura Bush Promenade. Dr. Carmen Miller Michael and her brother, Henry S. Miller, Jr., funded the memorial's construction. The memorial is intended to honor the SMU graduates who died in World War II. It was dedicated Monday, March 22, 1999. Present at the dedication were the extended Miller family, Representative Sam Johnson (R-TX), and various SMU and Dallas dignitaries. The documents are arranged into folders by subject and then placed in chronological order.
Box Folder
2 8 Letter from Umphrey Lee (former SMU President, deceased) regarding Jack Miller’s death, 1942
9 Miller family correspondence regarding the Memorial Plaza, 1998-1999
10 Miller family correspondence regarding the Memorial Plaza, 1999
11 SMU media coverage of the World War II Memorial Plaza Dedication, 1999
12 Other media coverage of the World War II Memorial Plaza Dedication, 1999

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Series IV:
Audio and Video, 1942-1992
1 Box

This series contains VHS tapes created by Bill Carmody (U.S.M.C. ret.) and Joe Bibby (U.S.M.C, deceased). The tapes feature Carmody and Bibby recounting their war experiences as "Carlson’s Raiders." Guadalcanal is prominently featured, as is the Makin Island Raid. Jack Miller is mentioned several times, though his story was not the basis for the tapes, nor is it featured more prominently than anything else. Additionally, some eight millimeter movie footage of Jack Miller is included that is not related to Carmody or Bibby. A wax record given to Jack Miller as a gift from an acquaintance in California is also included, along with an audio tape copy of the record’s contents. This series also contains three 78 rpm records of the CBS radio broadcast, "The First Line," from January 11, 1945, in which Jack Miller is mentioned as part of the story of the Second Marine Raider Batallion. The items in this series are arranged by type.
Box Folder
3 1 VHS – Joe Bibby, "The War Years"
2 VHS – Joe Bibby, "The War Years"
3 VHS – Task Force Guadalcanal, 50th Anniversary, 1992
4 VHS – Bill Carmody reads "As I Saw It"
5 VHS – Bill Carmody reads "Day By Day on Okinawa"
6 8 mm – Jacque A. Williams, footage of Jack Miller
7 8 mm – Jacque A. Williams, footage of Jack Miller
8 Wax record – gift to Jack Miller from California friend, 1942
9 Audio tape, copy of above wax record
Box Folder
4 1 Sound recording of "The First Line" CBS radio broadcast Jan. 11, 1945 [Six parts on three 78 rpm records]

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Series V:
Memorabilia, 1934-1999
1 Box

This series contains various memorabilia related to the life of Jack Miller. It includes Jack Miller’s bank ledgers, wallet, Boy Scout card, SMU Athletic “Letter” and pendant, and business cards. In addition, there are two honorary plaques, two books related to Jack Miller’s military service, a small flag for Jack Miller’s mother, the American flag that flew over the United States Capitol building in honor of Jack Miller in 1999, a pen inscribed with Jack Miller’s name, and a wooden box from the launching of the U.S.S. Miller, with the shattered champagne bottle wrapped in ribbon inside. The historical envelopes from this collection are also included. The items in this series are arranged by type.
Box Folder
4 2 Foldable plaque, Jack Miller Room dedication ceremony, location and date unknown
3 Book – "Guadalcanal 1942" by Joseph Mueller
4 Book – "The Marine Raiders" by Edwin P. Hoyt
5 Small flag, for Jack Miller’s mother, undated
6 American flag, flew over the United States Capitol building on February 22, 1999 in honor of Jack Miller
7 SMU Athletic "Letter" and pendant, owned by Jack Miller
8 Historical envelopes
9 Plaque, hung in the anteroom of the U.S.S. Miller (DE-410)
10 Pen, inscribed "Jack Miller"
11 Jack Miller’s bank ledger, Republic National Bank of Texas, 1940-1941
12 Jack Miller’s bank ledger, First National Bank, Quantico, VA, 1941
13 Jack Miller’s Boy Scout card, Circle 10 Council, 1934
14 Jack Miller’s wallet
15 Jack Miller’s business cards
16 Wooden box from the launching of the U.S.S. Miller, with shattered champagne bottle wrapped in ribbon inside

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