H. A. MINER, manufacturer of sash, doors, blinds, etc., and general contractor and builder, has his office and planing-mill on Northeast street, which occupy Nos. 408, 410, 412 and 414, Bloomington, Ill.
Mr. Miner has been a resident of the Prairie State since 1856, when he left the home of his childhood, and coming West settled first at Galesburg, this State, whence he soon afterward came to McLean County. He was born in Ontario County, N. Y., in 1835, and is the son of Seth and Abigail (Phelps) Miner, natives respectively of Connecticut and New York. Seth Miner was extensively engaged in farming in the Empire State, and was a man of great force of character, and universally respected by all who knew him.
The Miner family trace their ancestry back to the sixteenth century, when two brothers came from England and settled in Connecticut. We only date back in this biography of the Miner family to Ezra, the father of Seth and grandfather of this subject.
This gentleman was born in Connecticut, and followed the sea for many years as Captain of a merchant vessel. He finally abandoned the ocean, and spent the last years of his life in the peaceful pursuit of farming. He removed from Connecticut to Canandaigua, N. Y., and thence, in 1840, to Michigan, where he spent the remainder of his life, dying when about seventy-seven years of age. He served as a soldier in the War of 1812, and always interested himself in the welfare and prosperity of his country.
Seth Miner, the father of our subject, was for many years Justice of the Peace, and held various other offices in Steuben County, N. Y., where he was a leading and prominent man and Captain of the State Militia. He was deeply pious, and in early life connected himself with the Methodist Episcopal Church, in which he was a Class-Leader and Chorister for many years.
He died at Honeoye, Ontario Co., N. Y., lamented by all who knew him, as having been a good and useful citizen, whose loss could scarcely be replaced. The mother died at Prattsburg, N. Y. Of the six children which composed the parental family only three are now living: Henry A., of our sketch; Gertrude, Mrs. Wing, of Grand Rapids, Mich., and Jane, of Bloomington, Ill.
Henry A. Miner attended the common schools during his childhood, but remained with his parents until only thirteen years of age, when he started out in life for himself. He first apprenticed himself to learn harness-making, but not being satisfied with this trade he took up that of a carpenter, at which he worked until 1856, in his native county.
He then came to Illinois, as before stated, and devoted about six months to learning architecture and building. After coming to Bloomington he worked first as a journeyman carpenter, and then engaged as contractor and builder, in which he was successfully occupied for ten years following, often having under his employ from twenty-five to fifty men.
Finding it necessary to increase his business facilities he rented the building now occupied by the Walton Plow Company, where he operated successfully for fifteen years. He then sold out at a profitable figure to a company which had been formed to carry on the same business, and was their manager for three years. He then purchased the ground upon which his present office and shops are located, and built these and the mill in 1881. They occupy about 6,000 square feet of ground, are built of brick, being solid and substantial structures, admirably adapted to the purpose for which they were erected.
Mr. Miner is also the owner of a fine farm west of the city, and takes a genuine interest in agricultural affairs. He has furnished designs for many of the best buildings in McLean County.
He has taken a deep interest in the welfare and prosperity of his adopted city, and has furnished his full quota toward bringing it to its present proud position among the growing cities of the West. Politically Mr. M. is a Republican, and is a member in good standing of the Masonic fraternity.
Our subject was married in Bloomington, in 1885, to Miss Emma Thomas, and they occupy a beautiful residence at the corner of McLean and Locust streets, being surrounded by all the comforts of life and many of its luxuries. By a former marriage of our subject there were born three children: Frank, of Kansas City; Belle, who became the wife of C. A. Clement, of Springfield, Mo., and Willie, at home with his father.
Portrait and biographical album of McLean County, Ill. : containing full page portraits and biographical sketches of prominent and representative citizens of the county, together with portraits and biographies of all the governors of Illinois, and of the presidents of the United States. (Chicago: Chapman Brothers, 1887), 372. Transcribed and annotated by Judy Rosella Edwards.