From USNA Virtual Memorial Hall

Peter Miller '82

Date of birth: February 5, 1860

Date of death: April 3, 1883

Age: ~22

Lucky Bag

The Lucky Bag was first published in 1894.

Naval Academy Register

Peter Miller was admitted to the Naval Academy from Kansas on October 1, 1878 at age 18 years 7 months.


From Proceedings of the United States Naval Institute, 1884:

Naval Cadet Peter Miller. Born, Stockholm, Sweden, February 5, 1860. Appointed a Cadet Engineer, October 1, 1878. Graduated from the Naval Academy, June 8, 1882. Ordered to the Tennessee, July 26, 1882. Died on board the Tennessee, April 3, 1883, at Key West, Florida, having been severely scalded the day previous by the bursting of a steam-pipe while on duty in the fireroom. Sea service, one year, four months; shore duty, three years, one month; total service, four years, six months.

Memorial Hall Error

Peter is listed in Memorial Hall as a "Passed Midshipman." The contemporary report of his death above, as well as the Register of Commissioned and Warrant Officers of the United States Navy and Marine Corps of 1884 which lists his death, has "Naval Cadet." (There is no person with the rank "Passed Midshipman" in this Register.)

Navy Directories & Officer Registers

The "Register of Commissioned and Warrant Officers of the United States Navy and Marine Corps" was published annually from 1815 through at least the 1970s; it provided rank, command or station, and occasionally billet until the beginning of World War II when command/station was no longer included. Scanned copies were reviewed and data entered from the mid-1840s through 1922, when more-frequent Navy Directories were available.

The Navy Directory was a publication that provided information on the command, billet, and rank of every active and retired naval officer. Single editions have been found online from January 1915 and March 1918, and then from three to six editions per year from 1923 through 1940; the final edition is from April 1941.

The entries in both series of documents are sometimes cryptic and confusing. They are often inconsistent, even within an edition, with the name of commands; this is especially true for aviation squadrons in the 1920s and early 1930s.

Alumni listed at the same command may or may not have had significant interactions; they could have shared a stateroom or workspace, stood many hours of watch together… or, especially at the larger commands, they might not have known each other at all. The information provides the opportunity to draw connections that are otherwise invisible, though, and gives a fuller view of the professional experiences of these alumni in Memorial Hall.

July 1881

First Class Cadet Engineer, Naval Academy

Others at this command: LCDR Charles Kennedy '65, MIDN 1/c John Blandin '82, MIDN 2/c Benjamin Thurston '83, and Cadet Engineer 2/c Samuel Armistead '83.

Class of 1882

Peter is one of 4 members of the Class of 1882 on Virtual Memorial Hall.