Mifflin County Biographies
"History of the Juniata Valley and Its People, Vol. II" 1913

George Washington De Vault


The earliest record found of this branch is in New Jersey, where Joel De Vault was born, December 25, 1789, died in Lewistown, Pennsylvania, December 2, 1862. He lived in New Jersey until 1825, then prior to the year 1828 came to Pennsylvania. He became a wealthy farmer and large land owner of the Juniata Valley, his lands lying along the Black Log mountains. His wife, Mary, born in New Jersey, July 4, 1793, died in Juniata county, Pennsylvania, July 26, 1845. Children: 1. Eliza, born November 17, 1813, died in Granville township, June 12, 1886. 2. Joel, born March 14, 1817. 3. Michael, born February 25, 1819, died in Charleston, Illinois, December 26, 1881. 4. George W., of whom further. 5. Christian, born April 1, 1825, died August 17, 1825. 6. John L. S., born April 12, 1828, the first of the children born in Pennsylvania. 7. Mary J., born January 15, 1833, was killed by the cars at Mifflintown, Pennsylvania, September 17, 1837. 8. Caroline, born March 31, 1835. met her death by accidental burning in Deadwood, South Dakota; she married Patrick Gaston. Joel De Vault married a second wife, Elizabeth, who bore him several children.

George Washington, third son and fourth child of Joel and Mary De Vault, was born in New Jersey, May 9, 1822, died in Peoria, Illinois, April 29, 1877. He was a very young child when his parents moved to Juniata county, Pennsylvania, where he grew to manhood, obtaining an education in the public schools. When a young man he left the home farm and located in Marshall county, Illinois, with his brothers, Michael and John L. S. In 1846 he settled in Peoria, where he was general agent for the Truesdale Sewing Machine Company. He was a Republican in politics, and member of the Methodist Episcopal church. He married (first) December 3, 1845, Elizabeth McLaughlin, who died April 27, 1853, leaving two children: i. Eliza Jane, born 1846; married William Cortell. 2. William B., born February 25, 1848. He married (second) October 24, 1853, Hannah E. Allen, born August 8, 1833, who died leaving three children. 3. George Edwin, born September 30, 1854. 4. Marten Hollis, born April 6, 1857; now a shoe dealer of Kansas City, Missouri. 5. Noble Cullen, born December 25, 1859. He married (third) August 6, 1872, Catherine, daughter of James and Mary Ann (Blymyer) Nichols (see Nichol line below): their child: 6. Mary Nichols, born August 9, 1876, married James Franklin Collins, an iron worker, residing in Lewistown; child, Mary Catherine. Mrs. Catherine (Nichols) De Vault survives her husband and resides in Lewistown.

(The Nichols Line).

William Nichols came to Juniata Valley, settling at Lewisburg, where he was a merchant for several years, and died May 25, 1852. His first wife, Elizabeth (Crull) Nichols, whom he married in York county, Pennsylvania, August 13, 1807, died September 3, 1811, and in 1813 he married her sister, Jane Crull, who died June 7, 1826.


James Nichols

James, son of William Nichols, was born in York county, Pennsylvania, January 6, 1809, died July 3, 1885. He married, in 1829, Mary Ann Blymyer, born July 14, 1809, died August 2, 1889. They came to Lewistown in 1849 by boat on the Juniata canal and for several years James Nichols was a toll gate keeper. Later he started a grocery on East Market street, then was elected justice of the peace, an office he held for many years until his death. He was an ardent Whig, later a Republican, supporting that party witli all the earnestness of his nature. He served for a time as tax collector and was always active and interested in public affairs. He lived at No. no West Market street, which he purchased, and where he and his wife both died. They were active members of the Lutheran church and highly respected. His wife was a daughter of John and Margaret (Shutter) Blymyer, both born in York county. John was a saddler by trade and met his death by drowning while attempting to cross the Susquehanna river on a raft to Halifax, Pennsylvania. James and Mary Ann Nichols celebrated their golden wedding in 1879 at Lewistown, thirteen grandchildren being present. Children: 1. Elizabeth, born January 15, 1830, died August 8, 1897; married Andrew McCoy. 2. Margaret, born December 9, 1832; married Peter Ort, whom she survives, a resident of Tyrone, Pennsylvania. 3. Catherine, born December, 1836; widow of George Washington De Vault. 4. Leah Jane, born April 14, 1838; married William N. Hoffman; resides in Lewistown. 5. William B., born July 8. 1840, died October 22, 1859. 6. Anna Eliza, born May 9, 1842, died May 3, 1890; married G. Rose Reese. 7. Mary Susan, born April 15, 1844, died September 5, 1845. 8. Martha Ellen, born May 8, 1846; married John H. Reiley, whom she survives, a resident of Tyrone, Pennsylvania.



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