Phoebe Wass Life Sketch

(1806 - 1869)

Phoebe Wass was born on June 13, 1806 in Sussex County, New Jersey. Phoebe married (1) Lorenzo Miles around 1825 in Steuben County, New York, and (2) Ira Casterline on November 24, 1867, in Grant County, Indiana. Phoebe Wass Miles Casterline died on March 6, 1869 in Blackford County, Indiana.

Phoebe Wass was born on June 13, 1806, in Stillwater Township, Sussex County, New Jersey. Phoebe was the 7th of 10 known children of Adam Wass and his wife Anna. She was baptized in the Stillwater Presbyterian Church, a union church shared by the Lutheran and German Reformed faiths.

Phoebe grew up in the Kittatinny Valley in northern New Jersey and when a teenager, moved with her family to Elmira, Tioga County, New York. A few years later, the family moved a little farther west to Wheeler, Steuben County, New York where Phoebe met Lorenzo Miles.

Phoebe, age 18, and Lorenzo Miles married around 1825 in Steuben County, New York. Phoebe and Lozenzo had 12 known children:

  1. Hammond Miles
  2. Emily Miles
  3. Richard S Miles
  4. Mary Ann Miles
  5. Frances Elisabeth Miles
  6. William W Miles
  7. Nelson T Miles
  8. David Franklin Miles
  9. Adam Winslow Miles
  10. Lewis J Miles
  11. Margaret J Miles
  12. Hester Miles

Phoebe and Lorenzo's first child Hammond was born the year after their marriage, reportedly the first child born in Hammondsport where the family lived.

Phoebe would give birth to 5 more children before moving to Indiana around 1837. The Miles family, along with the Casterline family and several other Steuben county families made the six week trip from New York to Indiana. The Miles family first settled in Fayette county, then several years later moved to Upland, in Grant county.

Phoebe gave birth to 4 more boys between 1838 and 1846. In January of 1848, Phoebe's daughter Emily married Ira Vernon. In December of the same year, son Hammond married and daughter Emily gave birth to the Miles' first grandchild. Phoebe gave birth to another daughter in 1849 and in 1852, she had her 12th and last child, Hester.

Daughter Frances married Jeremiah Snyder in 1853 and a few years later Francis moved with her husband westward, initially to Missouri and then, a few years after that, they became early settlers in the Nebraska Territory. Phoebe's son William went with them.

When the Civil War broke out in 1861, three of Phoebe's sons served in the Union army, William in the Nebraska Territory and Nelson in Indiana. William died six months into his enlistment at the Soldier's Hospital in Syracuse, Missouri, a victim of typhoid pneumonia. Nelson deserted the army in Kentucky a few short months after his enlistment. It is unknown whether his parents ever saw him again. Adam Winslow served near the end of the war, a substitute for his brother Hammond.

In 1866 Phoebe's husband Lorenzo died. The following year she married widower Ira Casterline, father-in-law of Phoebe's sons, David and Adam Winslow.

On March 6, 1869, Phoebe Wass Miles Casterline died at the age of 62. Phoebe was buried next to her first husband Lorenzo Miles in Shiloh Cemetery, Grant County, Indiana.

Genealogical Research and Life Sketch completed: April 2021


"New Jersey Births and Christenings, 1660-1980", database, FamilySearch, Phoebe Was, 1806.

"United States Census, 1850," database with images, FamilySearch, Phoebe Miles in household of Lorenzo Miles, Jefferson Township, Grant, Indiana, United States; citing family , NARA microfilm publication (Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.).

"United States Census, 1860", database with images, FamilySearch, Phebe Miles in entry for Lorenzo Miles, 1860.

"Indiana Marriages, 1811-2019", database with images, FamilySearch, Phebe Miles in entry for Ira Casterline, 1867.

IndianaGenWeb Project, Grant County, Indiana. Cemetery Records. Shiloh Cemetery.

“Blackford and Grant Counties, Indiana, A Chronicle of their People Past and Present with Family Lineage and Personal Memoirs, Vols 1 & 2”, The Lewis Publishing Co., Chicago, IL, 1914.

"Nebraska, Grand Army of the Republic, Burial Records, 1861-1948", database, FamilySearch, William W Miles, .

"United States Civil War Soldiers Index, 1861-1865", database, FamilySearch, Nelson Miles, 1861-1865.

“Indiana State Archives, IARA”, Civil War, Adjutant General, Nelson Miles.

Phoebe Wass genealogy research