Published in The Garland Daily News  in 1980 as part of a series by  Betty Roberts



Edward C. Mills was born Dec. 25, 1805, in Ohio.  He was married to Sarah Hunter in 1826.  They had three sons:  Hope, John and James.

Sometime after 1832 Edward moved his family to Boone County, Ky.  They were listed as residents of the county in the 1840 census.  Sarah died shortly after 1840.

Edward married Elizabeth Collins in 1842.  Records show that Edward, Elizabeth and eight children moved to Texas in 1847.  They came as a part of the Peters’ Colony.

The agreement between the Peters’ Company and the Republic of Texas was that each married man would receive 640 acres.  Each single man over the age of 17 would receive 320 acres.  The Mills family received close to 1,600 acres.

In 1850 the state required the settlers to prove they had been living in Texas before 1848.  Each settler had an affidavit that had to be signed by two witnesses who knew the settler before July 1, 1848.  One witness for Edward Mills was John Neely Bryan, credited with founding Dallas.

Elizabeth died in October 1854.  She was the first person buried in the Mills Cemetery.  The cemetery, later donated to the city of Garland, is located on the corner of Centerville Road and old Highway 66.

Edward married a third time to Martha Ann Sturdivant, a widow with two daughters.  She and Edward had five children:  Henry C., William G., Matilda (Coyle), Serepta (Jacobs) and Margaret (Fugit).

Edward died June 22, 1871 and was buried in Mills Cemetery.  Martha died Feb. 1, 1881 and was buried next to Edward.

Edward’s oldest sons were the children of Sarah.  Hope was born in Ohio in 1829.  He married Mallissa Hilton in 1853.  They had three children.  Hope was killed in Vicksburg May we, 1863, during the siege.  His children received equal portions of his land.

John and James never married.  John was born in 1831 and died in 1894.  James was born in 1832.  He fought in the Civil War with Company F, 6th Cavalry.  He died in November 1919.

Robert, the son of Edward and Elizabeth, was born in 1846.  He was still a baby when he came to Texas.  He was married to Melissa Jacobs in 1866.  She died the following year.  In 1868 he married Martha Page.

They were the parents of several children.  Martha died in 1903.  Robert married Emma Coltrain.  When he died he was survived by five children and Emma.

All of the children of Edward and Martha were born in Garland.  Henry was born in 1856 and died in 1941.  He and his wife had two children.

William was born in 1858.  He died in December 1936 and was survived by six sons and three daughters.

Margaret Mills was born in 1866 and died in 1881.  She was buried in Mills Cemetery as Margaret Mills Fugit.  Serepta was born in 1861.  She was married in 1876 to Charles Jacobs.

The last surviving child was Nancy Matilda Mills.  She was born in 1864 and died in 1947.  She was married to Henderson Coyle.  They had three daughters.  She had been the youngest and last survivor of 24 children, including half-brothers and half-sisters.

Edward Mills’ descendants are numerous.  Many still remain in the Garland area.  The children in the Garland school system are seventh-generation Millses.