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RG4251.AM:  Harold Bancroft Miles, 1882-1939

Records:  1910-1922

Lincoln, Lancaster County, Neb.:  Coal dealer

Size:  2 volumes


Harold Bancroft Miles, son of Dr. George S. and Martha (DeWolf) Miles, was born in Jerseyville, Illinois in 1882. The Miles family came to Nebraska in 1888 or 1889, settling near Beatrice. H.B. Miles was educated in the public schools of Beatrice. At the age of sixteen, Miles went to Wyoming where he received an appointment to the U.S. Naval Academy. After his stint at the academy, Miles joined the sales department of the Cambria (Wyoming) Coal Company. He later joined Swift and Company, taking assignments in Kansas City, Missouri, and Mobile and Birmingham, Alabama. While in Mobile, he married Dawn Gilmore Fowler of that city. In 1905 Miles established a residence in Lincoln, Nebraska. With C.B. Havens, Miles operated a wholesale coal company. In 1910 he began his own coal company, which he operated for the next twenty-nine years. H.B. Miles died in Lincoln on April 9, 1939.


This collection consists of two volumes of manuscript materials relating to H.B. Miles’ various dealings in the coal business. The first ledger is a record of coal deliveries made by the H.B. Miles Wholesale Coal Company of Lincoln, Nebraska, 1910-1919. Entries show date, purchaser, address, number of cars delivered, type of coal sold, price, and car number. The second volume consists of minutes of the Grand River Coal Company, 1915-1922. Originally incorporated in Delaware in 1915, the home office of this company was moved to Lincoln in 1917. H.B. Miles served as secretary and treasurer of the company from 1917 until it dissolved in 1922. William H. Ferguson, prominent Lincoln businessman, was elected director of the company in 1917.

Note:  See the NSHS Library catalog and the Nebraska History index for articles and publications about the coal industry in Nebraska. See also the papers of William H. Ferguson [RG3644.AM].



  1. H.B. Miles Wholesale Coal Company deliveries, 1910-1919

  2. Minutes of the Grand River Coal Company, 1915-1922



Coal mines and mining

Coal trade — Nebraska

Grand River Coal Company (Lincoln, Neb.)

H.B. Miles Wholesale Coal Company (Lincoln, Neb.)

Lincoln (Neb.) — Businesses

Miles, Harold Bancroft, 1882-1939


AIP/pmc   06-03-1988

Encoded TMM   11-03-2010