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Samuel J. Miller papers

Collection BC-1999-022: Samuel J. Miller papers


  • Creation: 1864-1999
  • Creation: Majority of material found within 1948-1989

Scope and Contents

The Samuel J. Miller papers document his life, faculty work, academic and family history research, and published works. The collection contains materials relating to Miller's time as a professor of history at Boston College, including materials on the religious and intellectual history of Europe and the Ecumenical Movement. Also featured are personal and professional correspondence, as well as robust correspondence from Miller's time at the Leibniz Institute of European History in Germany, and from his long running relationship with collection donor George G. Ferriera. Miller’s papers also document his experiences while traveling in Europe including correspondence with colleagues and family, a travel journal of Miller's 1946 European summer tour conducted one year after the end of World War II, ephemera including hostel and temporary residence cards, photographs, drawings, and a pressed flower. Additionally, the collection contains certified copies of Miller's birth record and enlistment and discharge papers, academic records and diplomas, a Fulbright Scholar grant, and photographs of Miller and family. One folder contains extensive genealogical research including Civil War era correspondence. Also included are manuscripts and typescripts, research notes for published articles, and publications.


Restrictions on use

These materials are made available for use in research, teaching and private study, pursuant to U.S. Copyright Law. The user must assume full responsibility for any use of the materials, including but not limited to, infringement of copyright and publication rights of reproduced materials. Any materials used for academic research or otherwise should be fully credited with the source. The original authors may retain copyright to the materials.

Biographical note

Samuel Jefferson Miller was born in Harrison, Ohio, on August 7, 1919, to Monford Leroy Miller and Grace G. Amos. He was the youngest of four children, the others being John, Virginia, and Helen.

Miller graduated from high school in Carrollton, Ohio, in 1937. He enlisted in the U.S. Army in 1941 and was honorably discharged on September 26, 1941. In the early 1940s, Miller taught at several schools in Ohio. He received both his Bachelor of Science in Education (1941) and Master of Science (1947) from Ohio State University and attended Brown University from 1948-1950 where he earned a Ph.D. in history. Miller was a Fulbright Fellow at the University of Strasbourg in 1950-1951 and received a Teacher's Certificate in Social Studies for Secondary School teaching from the University of the State of New York on August 14, 1952.

Miller was a university fellow at Brown University for a year before he assumed a faculty position at Boston College as a history instructor in 1952. He received a fellowship to study at The Leibniz Institute of European History (IEG) in Mainz, Germany in the late 1950s. During his time at Boston College Miller became an Assistant Professor in 1955, Associate Professor in 1959, and full Professor in 1980. He studied and wrote about the religious and intellectual history of Europe and the Ecumenical Movement. Miller retired in 1986.

Miller's works were published in the Catholic Historical Review, Church History, Speculum, Anglican Theological Review, Commonweal, Proceedings of the American Philosophical Society, Amen, Le Monde, The Pilot, the Lortz Festschrift, the New Catholic Encyclopedia, and Collier's Encyclopedia.

Miller died in Roslindale, Massachusetts on January 30, 1999 at age 79.


"Obituary, Samuel J. Miller, 79," The Boston Globe, 8 February 1999.

Genealogical research materials, box 5, folder 8, Samuel J. Miller papers, BC.1999.022, John J. Burns Library, Boston College.


2.50 Linear Feet (5 containers)

Language of Materials






These papers document the life and work of Boston College history professor Samuel J. Miller, primarily dating from 1948-1989. They consist of correspondence, manuscripts and typescripts, research notes, publications, photographs, vital records, ephemera, and news clippings. Included are materials related to Miller’s work on the religious and intellectual history of Europe and the Ecumenical Movement, personal travel materials such as a journal from his time in Europe in 1946, personal correspondence and photographs, and extensive genealogical records.


Arranged into four series: I. Correspondence, II. Travel materials, III. Writings and related materials, and IV. Biographical records.


Gift of George G. Ferriera in 1999.

Separated Materials

Books written by Miller associated with this collection have been transferred within the Burns Library and can be found in the Boston College Library catalog.

Samuel J. Miller Papers
1864-1999, bulk 1948-1989
Becky Robbins, March, 2008; Rachael Young, 2019; and Molly Ogrodnik
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Revision Statements

  • 2022-09-21: Rearranged correspondence series and moved items after close review. Combined manuscripts with publications. Revised and updated description throughout.

Repository Details

Part of the John J. Burns Library Repository

John J. Burns Library
Boston College
140 Commonwealth Avenue
Chestnut Hill MA 02467 United States