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Rev. Nicholas S. George

REV. NICHOLAS S. GEORGE, a man of varied and successful business experience, and a Union soldier in the late Civil War, is the eldest son of Rev. Nicholas and Catherine (Yutzler) George, and was born near Mechanicsburg, Indiana county, Pennsylvania, September 7, 1834. His paternal ancestors were of German origin, and the Georges, of Cambria county, are descendants of Nicholas George, whose father was a Revolutionary soldier and resident of near Camden, New Jersey, where the George family was among the earliest settlers in that locality. Nicholas George removed to Chambersburg, Franklin county, and in 1810 went to Buffalo, New York, from which he was driven back in 1814 by Indian and British raids to Franklin county, in which he remained until 1820. In that year he became the first settler in the vicinity of Belsano, this county. He bought a tract of land, and cleared out a farm, on which he died in October, 1 846, aged over sixty years. He was a Lutheran; served as a soldier in the War of 1812, and married Elizabeth Helman, by whom he had nine children, five sons and four daughters: Mrs. Charlotte Luke, Jeremiah, Rev. Nicholas, Adam, Mrs. Elizabeth Cameron, Jacob, Mrs. Mary Mardis, Mrs. Catherine Pringle, and Cyrus.

Rev. Nicholas George was born near Buffalo New York, March 1, 1811, and died at Belsano, March 2, 1883. He was a shoemaker by trade, spent the early part of his life on a farm, and served for over twenty years as a local minister of the Evangelical association. While in the pulpit at Belsano, and in the midst of his sermon, he had a paralytic stroke, from which he died in a few hours. His life, though quiet and unostentatious, was well rounded and consistent to the close. He married Catherine Yutzler, who was born in Westmoreland county, November 15, 1810. Her father, Jacob Yutzler, was a native of near Greensburg, Westmoreland county, who enlisted as a soldier in the War of 1812, and was killed at the battle of Lundy's Lane.

To Rev. and Mrs. George were born ten children: Rev. Nicholas S., Lieut. Adam, a school-teacher, who enlisted in the One Hundred and Forty-ninth regiment Pennsylvania infantry; was taken prisoner at South Anna, and died at Andersonville after six months' confinement, July 7, 1864, number of grave 2992; Jonathan Mendall and William D., who died respectively at two and thirteen years of age; Jacob D., served in company I, Fifty-fourth Pennsylvania infantry; was wounded five times, and after the war became a carpenter, contractor, and builder in Cumberland, Maryland; Annie M., wife of Rev. B. F. Feitte, of Warren county; Elizabeth died at two years of age; Benjamin F., of South Fork, and Malinda and Fannie, twins, who died in infancy.

Rev. Nicholas S. George was reared on the farm; received a common-school education, and at fifteen years of age went to an iron furnace, where he worked for three years. He then engaged in farming in Clarion county, which he left in May, 1857, to learn the trade of cooper, which he followed at Summerhill and Ben's Creek for three years, excepting the winters. From 1857 to 1862 he taught five terms of school. During this time, in 1861, he had offered to enlist as a soldier, but was rejected on the ground of physical disability; but when Lee invaded Maryland, he served as a sergeant in an emergency company at Antietam, and again in the same capacity at the time of Lee's invasion. A year later, on September 1, 1864, he offered to enlist, and was accepted as a member of company D, Two Hundred and Fourth Pennsylvania regiment or Fifth Heavy artillery, in which he served at the battles of Salem and Rectortown, Virginia. After the close of the war he returned to Summerhill, and entered the service of the Pennsylvania Railroad company as a laborer, but was soon promoted to foreman. Four years later, in November, 1869, he became manager of P. M. and J. Brown's large general mercantile establishment at Summerhill, which position he resigned nine years later, in 1878, to assume the management of his farm, which he left in October, 1834, to open a general mercantile establishment at South Fork. At the end of nearly a year, in September, 1885, he formed a partnership with F. M. Brown, of Wilmore, and J. C. Stineman and Dr. J. C. Luke, of South Fork, under the firm name of Brown, George & Co. They did a large general mercantile business up to April 1, 1890 when they sold to Stineman Brothers, and Mr. George and his son, Harry J., started their present and first regular hardware establishment at South Fork. Their establishment is on Main street, a two-story building, twenty-two by fifty feet in dimensions, and has been thoroughly fitted up for business. They carry constantly a stock of nearly four thousand dollars, and do a business of ten thousand dollars per year.

In politics Mr. George is a republican, and has served as school-director, member of the borough council, burgess, and justice of the peace. He is past commander of D. T. Stineman Post, No. 560, Grand Army of the Republic; commander of South Fork Castle, No. 61, Ancient Order Knights of the Mystic Chain; treasurer of South Fork Council, No. 74, Junior Order of United American Mechanics; treasurer of Lone Star Court, Ancient Order of Foresters of America, and a past officer of South Fork Castle, No. 161, Knights of the Golden Eagle, and a member of Washington Camp, No. 621, Patriotic Order Sons of America. Mr. George has led an active, honorable, and industrious life, and although unassisted pecuniarily when starting out to do for himself, yet has by good judgment and judicious management secured a fair competency and controls a prosperous business. Pleasant, enterprising, and public-spirited, his highest ambition is to be useful to his fellow-citizens, and to advance the true interests of his borough. He is a member of the United Evangelical church, in which he has served for over twenty years as a local minister. In every relation of life he has been faithful to duty and honor, and caring but little for distinction, has always acted for the right, independent of interest or popularity.

On July 18,1858, Rev. George married Mary Paul, a daughter of Lewis Paul, of Croyle township. Rev. and Mrs. George have had nine children: Epanimonidas, in the railway service at South Fork; Mary C.,wife of William Rohrbaugh, of Wilmore, this State; William E., a freight conductor on the Pennsylvania railroad; Sylvester S., now deceased; Harry J., a partner in the hardware business with his father; Charles E., a freight conductor on the Pennsylvania railroad; Annie C., a clerk in Stineman & Brothers' general mercantile establishment at South Fork; John L., and Homer C., at home with their parents.

Source: Biographical and Portrait Cyclopedia of Cambia County.


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