Olga (Babcock) Miller

(1871 - January 24, 1937)


The Lusk Herald
February 18, 1937


Mrs. Olga Miller, Past President Dies at Iowa Home

Word of the death of Mrs. Ola (as printed) Miller, past national president of the P.E.O. Sisterhood was received this week by Mrs. Ethel Hartwell, who has an aunt living in Iowa, the home state of Mrs. Miller.

When Lusk entertained the state convention of P. E. O. Chapters in 1928 Mrs. Miller was present and made many friends during her stay in Lusk, among the B. I. L,s, as well as the P. E. 0.'s.

At the time of Mrs. Miller's death she was serving her third term as secretary of the state of Iowa and she was called the "mother of the state highway patrol," as she was the founder of that movement in Iowa.

Mrs. Miller had been ill with influenza but kept a speaking appointment where she spoke on promoting highway safety and became ill following the meeting. Pneumonia developed and she passed away at the Iowa Methodist hospital Sunday morning, January 24, 1937.

Guarded constantly by state highway patrolmen, her body laid in state at the Dunn Funeral home the day following her death and on Tuesday was taken to Washington, Iowa, where services were held in the Methodist church.

State highway patrolmen were the active pallbearers and the state patrol attended the funeral in a body.

Mrs. Miller was 65 at the time of her death, having been born in Iowa in 1871 and most of her life was spent in the city of Washington, Ia.

Her parents were Mr. and Mrs. Nathan A. Babcock, and as Ola Babcock, she attended the public schools, Washington academy and Iowa Wesleyan college, at Mount Pleasant. She taught in the Washington County rural schools and at 24 was married to Alex Miller, editor of the Washington Ia., Democrat.

Mr. Miller died 10 years ago and one son in infancy, two daughters survive.

As a young woman she liked to paint and boasted that she entered "palntings and pickles" at the county fairs.

Soon after being elected to the office of secretary of state she became aware of the unnecessary death toll on the Iowa highways and established a trial uniformed patrol of 15 men. She personally spoke constantly to large and small audiences driving home the gospel of safe and sane driving to save lives.

Mrs. Miller's success as an administrator to her man-like ability to pick department heads.

And while the state of Iowa mourns the passing of this fine woman, the P. E. O. Chapers over the United States, who knew her as their national president also grieve for the loss to their Sisterhood and Chapter I of Lusk rejoices that they had the privilege of knowing her personally.




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