A room with a view
Unconventional courtship leads to 50-plus
of marriage for NTAC couple
Every afternoon, Amp Miller and his buddy Lloyd
Clark leaned out their dorm-room window to watch the prettiest girl
on the North Texas Agricultural College campus walk by.
Oh, all the screaming and hollering that went on. It was quite
an event, Amp remembers.
The howling was directed toward Ruth Boutwell,
whose dating schedule was packed. But Amp longed to be on it. It
was hard for me to crack in there. Shed go out to lunch with
one fellow, to the dance with a second, and then to the late-night
dance at the local club with a third. Eventually I gave up for the
short termstepped back a little.
One day, from their perch in Davis Hall (now Brazos
Hall), Amp turned to Lloyd and declared, Thats the girl
Im going to marry. And, several years later, he did.
When Uncle Sam called in 1943, Amp left on a three-year
tour of Europe. But the military was not to be his career.
I went into the Army as a private and came out as a private
first class, he said with a laugh. Congress had passed
a law that if youd been in for 30 months and hadnt caused
any trouble, you had to be promoted.
While Amp was overseas, Ruth finished at NTAC
(now UTA) and completed her bachelors degree at U.T. Austin.
She was back in Dallas when she heard Amp was home. They went on
their first date in 1946, when Amp invited her to the wrestling
The heroes won, the villains lost. It was
a rousing night, he said. But the guys behind us spilled
beer on her new coat. The second date would be a classier
It was lovely, and no one spilled beer on her.
When Amp finally popped the question in 1946,
Ruth hesitated for a moment. What if some day I find someone
I like better? she asked. You never will, he replied.
They married Aug. 31, 1946. Were so lucky, Ruth
says today. Ive always really enjoyed being with Amp.
They have three children, including their oldest, Amp III. The name,
originally given to Amps father, honored a favorite great-uncle
Ampie. Amp himself started out with the name Armstead, but that
When I started school, I told my dad I couldnt
even spell it, he said. I asked him to change my name
to Amp, too. So he went down to the records office and did it. Now
we have an Amp the third and our grandson is Amp the fourth.
Cherished memories and dear friends keep bringing Amp and Ruth back
to Arlington from their home in Dallas.
I cant applaud the alumni group enough, Ruth said.
They help us keep up with all of our old friends. That has
meant so much to us.
The NTAC alums dance and visit and reminisce.
And Amp still thinks Ruth is the prettiest girl on campus.