Mary Jane DeVault

F, b. 9 April 1840, d. 14 February 1897
     Mary Jane DeVault was born on 9 April 1840 at Piney Flats, Sullivan Co., TN. She was the daughter of John DeVault and Elizabeth Kitzmiller. Mary Jane DeVault married Henry Kitzmiller Hodges, son of James Hodges and Mary Kitzmiller, on 26 September 1860.1 Mary Jane DeVault died on 14 February 1897 at Washington Co., TN, at age 56.2 She was buried in February 1897 at Allison-Boring-Hodges Cemetery, Old Crump Farm, Washington Co., TN.

Children of Mary Jane DeVault and Henry Kitzmiller Hodges


  1. [S467] 1850 Federal Census, Washington County, Tennessee. Microfilm Image, NARA Series M432, Roll 898.
  2. [S28] Charles M. Bennett, Washington County Cemetery Records., 88.
  3. [S464] 1880 Federal Census, Washington County, Tennessee. Microfilm Image, NARA T9, Roll 1284; FHL #1255284.

Mary Jane DeVault

F, b. 1 January 1844, d. 27 November 1937
     Mary Jane DeVault was born on 1 January 1844 at Leesburg, Washington Co., TN. She was the daughter of John DaVault and Amanda Jane Russell. Mary Jane DeVault married Dr. Edward Owings Guerrant M.D., D.D., son of Henry Guerrant and Mary Owings, on 12 May 1868 at the home of the bride, "Sunnyside", Leesburg, Washington Co., TN. Mary Jane DeVault lived at the Lexington area, Fayette Co., KY. She died on 27 November 1937 at Clark Co., KY, at age 93. She was buried in 1937 at Lexington Cemetery, Lexington, Fayette Co., KY.

Children of Mary Jane DeVault and Dr. Edward Owings Guerrant M.D., D.D.

Mary Louise DeVault

F, b. 26 June 1861, d. 8 July 1932
     Mary Louise DeVault was also known as "Mollie". She was born on 26 June 1861 at Sullivan Co., TN.1 She was the daughter of John David DeVault and Cynthia H. Wells. Mary Louise DeVault married Charles Burgess Thomas, son of Joel Burgess Thomas and Angeline Susan Burson, circa 1890 at Sullivan or Washington Co., TN.2 Mary Louise DeVault died on 8 July 1932 at Jonesborough, Washington Co., TN, at age 71. She was buried in July 1932 at Maple Lawn Cemetery, Jonesborough, Washington Co., TN.

Children of Mary Louise DeVault and Charles Burgess Thomas


  1. [S1256] 1880 Federal Census, Sullivan County, Tennessee. Microfilm Image, NARA Series T9, Roll 1281; FHL #1255281.
  2. [S465] 1900 Federal Census, Washington County, Tennessee. Microfilm Image, NARA Series T623, Roll 1603; FHL #1241603.

Mary Mabel DeVault

F, b. 22 April 1903, d. January 1986
     Mary Mabel DeVault was born on 22 April 1903 at Jonesborough, Washington Co., TN. She was the daughter of Joseph Gilbert DeVault and Nannie Elvira DePew. Mary Mabel DeVault died in January 1986 at Washington Co., VA, at age 82.
Note: Did not marry.

Mary Russell DeVault

F, b. 2 March 1914, d. 11 December 2006
     Mary Russell DeVault was born on 2 March 1914 at Bristol, Sullivan Co., TN. She was the daughter of Edward Guerrant DeVault and Martha Isabelle Fain. Mary Russell DeVault married James Nolden Butcher, son of James Butcher and Leona Farless, on 7 December 1935 at Johnson City, Washington Co., TN. Mary Russell DeVault died on 11 December 2006 at Washington Co., TN, at age 92 OBITUARY

Mary Butcher - JOHNSON CITY
Mary Russell DeVault Butcher, age 92, died Monday, December 11, 2006 at her home in Johnson City.
Mrs. Butcher had also resided in Bristol, TN and Leesburg, TN.
She was preceded in death by her parents, Edward & Martha Fain DeVault and her husband of fifty years, James Nolden Butcher. She was a lifelong member of the Presbyterian Churches in Bristol and Leesburg. Mrs. Butcher's interest in the history of Washington County ranged from her activity in the State of Franklin DAR to opening her home, the DeVault Tavern, to tour groups and historical organizations including the Governor's School.
Survivors include a sister, Mrs. Casto Ramsey of Abingdon, VA ; two children, Martha B. Crowe, of the home and Jim Butcher of Bristol, TN; four granddaughters, Elizabeth and Maggie Crowe, both of Johnson City, Cassie Peters, Mechanicsville, VA and Jamie Butcher, Princeton, NJ; and one great grandson, Thomas Noah Peters, Mechanicsville, VA.
The family will receive friends from 12:30-2:00 pm Thursday, December 14, 2006 at Dillow-Taylor Funeral Home. Graveside services will follow at Fairview Cemetery in Leesburg with Dr. David Wadsworth officiating.
Those who prefer memorials in lieu of flowers are encouraged to make donations to the memorial fund of their choice.
Condolences may be sent to the Butcher family online at
Dillow-Taylor Funeral Home & Cremation Services, Jonesborough, 753-3821. She was buried in December 2006 at Fairview Cemetery, Leesburg, Washington Co., TN.

Mary Tennessee DeVault

F, b. 12 June 1890, d. 27 October 1906
     Mary Tennessee DeVault was born on 12 June 1890 at McDowell Co., NC. She was the daughter of Hugh Alexander Tate DeVault and Mary Alice Brown. Mary Tennessee DeVault died on 27 October 1906 at age 16. She was buried in 1906 at Glen Alpine Cemetery, Glen Alpine, Burke Co., NC.

Matilda DeVault

F, b. 19 December 1814, d. 1 July 1896
     Matilda DeVault was also known as "Mattie". She was born on 19 December 1814 at DeVault's Ford, Washington Co., TN.1,2 She was the daughter of Valentine DeWald and Susannah Range. Matilda DeVault married Peter Miller Reeves, son of Edward Prothero Reeves and Mary Miller, on 10 March 1836 at Washington Co., TN. Matilda DeVault died on 1 July 1896 at Washington Co., TN, at age 81 dates from headstone. She was buried in July 1896 at Carr-Reeves Cemetery, Johnson Ciity, Washington Co., TN.

Children of Matilda DeVault and Peter Miller Reeves


  1. [S467] 1850 Federal Census, Washington County, Tennessee. Microfilm Image, NARA Series M432, Roll 898.
  2. [S1251] 1860 Federal Census, Washington County, Tennessee. Microfilm Image, NARA Series M653, Roll 1277; FHL #805277.

Maude Carolyn DeVault

F, b. 21 July 1895, d. January 1975
     Note: The following story was published in the book Historic Haunted America by Michael Norman and Beth Scott. The introductory paragraph states that the story is "absolutely true."

Maude DeVault, Schoolmarm

Redington was once the liveliest outpost of civilization in Nebraska's western border country. Its reputation was acquired, in part, by tales of a ghost that frequented the scene of a gruesome murder.

On the night of September 30, 1883, Charles Adams was brutally killed. His head was chopped off. There were no clues to the identity of the assailant, but the motive was apparently robbery. A large sum of money was missing from Adams's cabin, along with a diamond shirt stud and other valuables. The search for the murderer was futile and, after the initial excitement had worn off, interest waned.

The community, located about ten miles southwest of Bridgeport on today's State Highway 88, was growing. By 1886 a post office was established and stores and sod houses were being built by the new settlers. The Adams murder took on a new twist, however, when locals said they saw a ghost visiting the little cabin where Adams had lived and died. On the anniversary of his murder, Adams was spied riding a white horse, carrying his head in his hands like the immortal Ichabod Crane. For years the headless horseman returned, frightening everyone who saw him.

The legend grew throughout the region until 1913, when the Redington School's new teacher, an adventuresome young beauty named Maude DeVault, said she'd surely like to meet this phantom horseman. Pranksters heard about Miss DeVault's wish and saw the opportunity for a practical joke. They decided that teacher and ghost should meet.

One young man consented to pose as the ghost, and draped himself and his horse with sheets. He was to conceal himself directly behind the dilapidated Adams Cabin, a mile south of Redington, and at the given signal he was to ride out into the road and gallop away.

At precisely nine o'clock on the night of September 30, 1913, the thirtieth anniversary of Adams's death, the village ghost hunters arrived in front of the cabin to wait and watch. Their patience was soon rewarded; the ghost galloped boldly toward them. The citizens panicked, nearly trampling one another as they tried to flee. That is, everyone but Miss DeVault. She stepped forward, seized the horse by the reins, and demanded and explanation of the rider's periodic visits, punctuating her request with a couple of shots from her trusty revolver.

The frightened horse bolted, crashed into a wire fence and lost its trappings. Spectators peered into the gloom and saw several white sheets float to the ground. The "ghost" had been killed! Women shrieked and fainted and men groaned.

The "ghost's" sister, a formidable figure of nearly 280 pounds, was so stricken with fear that she sprinted toward Redington to spread the news. An automobile sent in pursuit overtook her only with difficulty. Brought back to the scene, the sister discovered it was her brother and not a ghost who rode horseback that night. And her brother was alive and unhurt. She collapsed, and a physician had to be called.

When the episode was finally explained to everyone later that night, Miss DeVault said she had expected plotters to arrange a joke on the schoolmarm and had loaded her revolver with blank cartridges. She earned the respect of everyone.

The Redington post office was abandoned in 1962 and the "haunted Adams Cabin" itself burned in 1974. A church, a rural school, and a cluster of families are all that remain. Yet Redington's distinctions have probably never been matched. This little pioneer community had a legendary ghost, a real live spook, a ghost buster, and a 280-pound lady sprinter - all at the same time. It was probably enough to make the spirit of Charles Adams flee to Omaha.

Bayard Transcript - October 10, 1929

Mrs. C. E. Moberg entertained five girls at a delicious 6 o'clock dinner Friday evening in honor of her daughter, Marjorie Beth, the occasion being her seventh birthday. Games were played and Marjorie Beth received some lovely remembrances from her friends. The guests were June Deal, Erline Vanatta, Bernice Prince, Margaret Fricke and Jean Prideaux.
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Letter from Maude DeVault to her brother, Lynn DeVault

March 28, 1955

Dear Lynn:

I've been told one should never start a letter with an apology, but when I find a letter from you dated August 30, which I'm quite sure I haven't answered and one dated Febr. 2, which I know I haven't, I feel that something like an apology is due. In one of them you mentioned that the years of youth are long, long years, but I'm finding that the years of middle age are short, short years. Time is slipping away from me so fast that soon I will have reached the age of senility and I don't like it at all. So many things I've wanted and intended to do in my life and looking back I find I've realized very few of them.

I scarcely know where to start for if I try to find an answer to all the things you've asked about in these letters, I'll be writing till midnight. First I'll try and tell you a bit about Ada Montgomery Pearson. I'm very sure if you had met her on the street you would have recognized her for I think she's just about the same as the day you all laughed at her in class. She married a Ralph Pearson, whose sister married one of the Einsel boys. And of course you remember Orval Einsel, the sissy one, and I believe he turned out to be a bad one, more or less a criminal. Well any way Ada has two sons, one I think lives in Washington D.C. and one in Chicago. If you remember Ada went to Lincoln to school and belonged to one of the very good sororities (hard to believe, but true). They lived here while her children were small and then moved to Lincoln, and I believe her boys are both university graduates. Her husband died some years ago and she came back to Bayard to live with her mother, the father having died some years before. Mrs. Montgomery died several years ago and Ada is still here, very well to do I think for the Montgomerys never spent any of their money. However Ada works, runs the linotype at the Transcript office, baby sits and various other sorts of small jobs. She combs her hair straight back and coiled in a big knot at the back, and some how I feel that she must dive down in some of her mother's old trunks occasionally and come up with what she calls a new dress. Of course it goes without saying that she's a thoroughly good person, but one that would drive me mad if I had to be around her. She belongs to the church we do and once in a while I get on some committee with her. She uses very good English, but the very flowery type. She's who, instead of saying "I don't know," would say "One doesn't know, does one?" But to make a long story short I would say that Ada had changed very little in forty years.

Yes, Bobby Burns was definitely a horseman. He was a bachelor and as I remember it, he and George Young sort of teamed up together. I haven't any idea what became of him, but George Young married, had a couple of children and the daughter recently married Rufus Knapp who is Dick Knapp's oldest son. I always have remembered hearing Mrs. Dick Knapp tell someone many years ago at a Fourth of July celebration that Dick gave the kids fifteen cents apiece to spend and how mad she was at Dick for so doing.

Strange to say just a few weeks before I got your last letter as I was opening a can of Crisco, I suddenly remembered Cottolene and wondered what became of such products. I would never have thought of the verse again, but it came back very vividly as I read it. And do you remember X-Cel-O, the breakfast food that I think was pretty much like the corn flakes of today. Once upon a time there was a silver coffee service to be given to the one who first found all the letters X-CEL-O in the boxes of breakfast food, there being one letter in each box. We had everything but the E for months and of course there was only one E to be had. Well, low and behold, we got the package with the E in it. Dad kept the service for awhile in one of the drawers of that monstrosity called a bookcase or something and every few days he'd take it out and polish it for hours. He finally sold it to the Soders for five dollars. If you remember the Soders ran a saloon and also had a very smart high stepping horse and red wheeled buggy which was almost as grand as Dolly Morrison's sway back. The Soders started to build a sidewalk from their house out to the street by filling empty whiskey bottles with sand and then burying them bottom up level with the ground, but the Soders left before it was fininshed and the Gilberts bought the place. The first thing they did was dig up the walk. But at any rate the beautiful coffee service left with the Soders and I guess we lost our appetite for X-Cel-O when we didn't get to keep the silver, and so it and Cottolene fade into the past. I best remember that during the time when Joe Hughes used to eat at our house once in a while, and something he said once about Cottolene gravy which very much embarrassed mother for the gravy was made with Cottolene. We didn't get around to talking about Joe. You know he lived someplace close to North Platte for a long time, a ranch I think. He was here about fifteen years ago. I didn't see him then, but Dorothy did. At one time Mrs. Ellis Judd, she and Ellis having separated, kept house for Joe. Have never heard any more about him since he was here.

I am really mad a myself for not clipping a picture of the former Ester Scott which appeared in the Omaha World Herald a few weeks ago. It was taken with her husband and several other people at the Stockmen's Convention. I don't see her very often any more, though we used to be very good friends. After teaching a few years she took nurse's training and used to be at our house quite often during the years when we were first married. But anyway the picture showed Ester to be about as broad as she is long, or a Chris says one of those people that it's just as easy to go over them as it is to go around them. But they have a lot of money for the Coulters never spent much of theirs either. Whether you ever knew it or not, Esther had you marked for her own and was not at all happy when you escaped. This she told me so I didn't just imagine it.

And now we come to Melissa Boyer. Melissa as you probably know married Tom McCann. For quite some years she was just Melissa, fat and coarse like her mother. When people here began to be beauty parlor conscious she decided she'd like to be a beauty operator. Tom said he wouldn't have much money to leave her, but he'd give her a good education so he sent her to Denver to a beauty school. You should have seen Melissa when she came back, dieted down to a perfect figure and while of course being Melissa she could never be beautiful, she had changed and all for the better. Then after Tom had given her all that good education she ups and has an affair with another man and finally leaves Tom and married the other fellow, and as far as I know she lives in California, a Mrs. Markland.

We very much enjoyed the clippings you sent and I have a feeling that there are times when you regret having parted with the Bearcat. I shouldn't be too surprised sometime to hear that it had changed hands again and was back in your garage. And if you remember will you tell me again just where you found the clipping about the Leaches. And by the way do you want these clippings back?

Thanks for your offer of the books, but I imagine we have most of the same books you have. We have all of Francis Parkinson Keys books and as we do not have extra storage space we can't take care of extra copies. This library already has a number of books that once belonged to you. Most of those you left at home. I tore the page out with your name and gave them to the library just a short time before I went to work there. Don't you have a veteran's hospital near you? So many times they are glad to get books. We have both "The Big Sky" and "The Way West" and I have read them both and thought them very fine. If you have not located "Old Jules" yet I should like to mail you our copy. It is old and battered but still read quite frequently, but I wouldn't mind it's being out for several weeks. I am so sure that you would enjoy it and you could return it when you were through with it. It is definitely not the same as "Cheyenne Autumn." That and "The Buffalo Hunters" are her two latest books, Old Jules was her first and much of the material for it she gathered from Old Jules himself before he died in the Alliance hospital. So if you are still wanting it, I would be very happy to loan it to you for a period. And while we are talking about books Chris wonders why you are wasting your time with ours when you should be writing books. He doesn't think A. B. Guthrie or Mari Sandoz has anything to offer that you haven't. I have delved into the past so many times in preparing papers and programs for different things that I belong to that people have told me I should do something about preserving those early day happenings for posterity. But the generation that I got most of my information from is a past generation and most of those people are up on he hill now, and so my source of information is buried with them.

We read such a nice letter that Dorothy had from Sue after the holidays and after Hunter had come and gone again. You will soon have your family together again for the summer. We managed to get through the holiday season and now we are able to say "Just one more Xmas for them over there."

Best wishes to Leris and Sue


Bayard Transcript - January 30, 1975

Maude Moberg
Graveside Rites
Tuesday Morning

Graveside funeral services for Maude C. Moberg were held at the Bayard Cemetery at 10:00 a.m. Tuesday, Jan. 28. Mrs. Moberg passed away Saturday, Jan 25 at a nursing home in Gering. She was 79 years of age.
The daughter of William and Elizabeth (Campbell) Davault, she was born July 21, 1895 at Bayard and made this her life-long home.
She was married to Carl E. Moberg on June 20, 1921 at Denver. Mr. Moberg preceded her in death several years ago.
Mrs. Moberg served as librarian in the Bayard City Library for 25 years until her retirement in the late 1960's.
Left to mourn her death are a daughter, Mrs. Marjorie Campbell of Colorado Springs, Colo., and a sister, Dorothy DeVault of Scottsbluff.
The Rev. Frank Hodson officiated at the graveside service Tuesday. Interment was made at the Bayard Cemetery. Plummer-Towne Funeral Home was in charge of the arrangements.

Maude Carolyn DeVault was born on 21 July 1895 at Bayard, Morrill Co., NE. She was the daughter of William Peter DeVault and Anna Elizabeth Campbell. Occupation: School Teacher and Saleslady in a drygoods store. Maude Carolyn DeVault married Carl Ephraim Moberg, son of Andrew Moberg and Gusta S. (?), after 1920 at Bayard, Morrill Co., NE. Maude Carolyn DeVault died in January 1975 at Gering, Scotts Bluff Co., NE, at age 79. She was buried in January 1975 at Bayard Cemetery, Bayard, Morrill Co., NE.

Child of Maude Carolyn DeVault and Carl Ephraim Moberg

Maude Marian DeVault

F, b. 22 September 1881, d. 15 January 1966
     Maude Marian DeVault was born on 22 September 1881 at Greene Co., TN.1 She was the daughter of John Augustus DeVault and Mary Eleanor McClellan. Maude Marian DeVault married John Nathan Tucker, no children to this marriage. Maude Marian DeVault died on 15 January 1966 at age 84. She was buried at Oak Grove Cemetery, Greeneville, Greene Co., TN.


  1. [S1250] 1900 Federal Census, Greene County, Tennessee. Microfilm Image, NARA Series T623, Roll 1573; FHL #1241573.

Maxie Horton DeVault

F, b. 24 May 1915, d. 14 October 1920
     Maxie Horton DeVault was born on 24 May 1915 at Emory, Washington Co., VA. She was the daughter of Joseph Gilbert DeVault and Nannie Elvira DePew. Maxie Horton DeVault died on 14 October 1920 at Washington Co., VA, at age 5.

Melvina Lorraine DeVault

F, b. 3 August 1928, d. 21 August 2006
     Melvina Lorraine DeVault was born on 3 August 1928 at Acton, Marion Co., IN. She was the daughter of William Walker DeVault and Estella Mae Pence. Melvina Lorraine DeVault married Walter John Binkley. Melvina Lorraine DeVault died on 21 August 2006 at Greensburg, Decatur Co., IN, at age 78. She was buried in August 2006 at Westport Cemetery, Westport, Decatur Co., IN, Find A Grave Memorial# 52028311.

Michael Kitzmiller DeVault

M, b. November 1817, d. 1903
     Michael Kitzmiller DeVault was born in November 1817 at Manheim Twp., York Co., PA. He was the son of Jacob Davault and Rachel Dorothy Kitzmiller. Michael Kitzmiller DeVault married Mary Ann Bridwell circa 1847. Michael Kitzmiller DeVault died in 1903 at Pike Co., IL. He was buried in 1903 at Pittsfield West Cemetery, Pittsfield, Pike Co., IL, Findagrave #140284168.
Note: (from Tracy DeVault):

The following is an excerpt from a letter written by Franklin Hunt Broyles, M.D. in 1933. See notes under Franklin Hunt Broyles for the complete text of the letter.

" I visited Uncle Michael K. DeVault in Illinois more than fifty years ago but had not corresponded with any of them for fifty years but once in a while I would send Cousin Laura a birthday card, or a picture of some place of interest I visited but never heard from her. Just this last Christmas I sent her a Christmas card, and two or three weeks later I received a letter from her niece saying her Aunt Laura died three years ago. That her grandparents, her father and her uncle and aunt were all dead and that as far as she knew one brother was the only living relative she had on earth and that if I was a friend of the family or knew any thing about the DeVault family she would be glad to hear from me. I went back to her great, great, grandfather and gave her a quite complete history down to herself, so complete should she wish to join the D.A.Rs she can do so. Although I stopped with the birth and death of my own mother of that branch of our family. I will give this to her in another chapter. I have not heard from her since I sent her that letter, and she has no idea she and I are second cousins. It is too bad relatives get so scattered they loose all trace of each other, but I can I think understand how it is she knows not of her father's family. Uncle Michael DeVault was one of the best men I ever knew, and his wife was just as good as long as she was boss and every one bowed to her, but when they did not she was a regular she devil. Their oldest son Elbert married a young lady his mother had taken a dislike for and I heard her say she never wanted to see him again and that she never wanted to look in her face either in life or death. This marriage took place at the time I visited them, and it is my opinion he gave his family a wide bearth and told his children nothing about them, altho the rest of the famiy never said a word in my presence against the young lady Elbert married. The other two children never married. I know cousin Laura had an opportunity to marry a young man who has made a splendid success of his life, and her mother was willing that he and Laura marry, provided they would move right in and live with or very near her for he would would not be domineered over by her and Laura did not want to live with her for she knew no one could do so in peace, but at the same time she said she could never marry with out her mother's consent and if she did not marry this particular young man she would never marry any. That decided the young man to break the engagement and some years later married a jewel of a young woman. None of the children were at all like their mother in disposition but seeing the heart aches caused by her brother's disobedience caused her to sacrifice a happy married life with a home and children of her own.

Children of Michael Kitzmiller DeVault and Mary Ann Bridwell

Mildred Eileen DeVault

F, b. 23 February 1922, d. 31 January 2012
     Mildred Eileen DeVault was born on 23 February 1922 at Little River, Rice Co., KS. She was the daughter of Leland Tasaway DeVault and Elsie May Keever. Mildred Eileen DeVault married Ray Armitage Griffith, son of Ray Griffith and Mary Hoppings, on 16 April 1938 at Newton, Harvey Co., KS. Mildred Eileen DeVault died on 31 January 2012 at Hutchinson, Reno Co., KS, at age 89. She was buried in February 2012 at Lyons Municipal Cemetery, Lyons, Rice Co., KS.

Children of Mildred Eileen DeVault and Ray Armitage Griffith

Mildred May DeVault

F, b. 9 February 1890, d. after 1960
     Mildred May DeVault was born on 9 February 1890 at Bayard, Morrill Co., NE. She was the daughter of William Peter DeVault and Anna Elizabeth Campbell. Mildred May DeVault married Kosta Christoff Tischoff, no children. Mildred May DeVault lived at Denver, Denver Co., CO. She died after 1960.

Milton Henry DeVault

M, b. 10 November 1921, d. 6 September 1951
     Milton Henry DeVault was also known as "Bud". He was born on 10 November 1921 at Syracuse, Onondaga Co., NY. He was the son of David Sullins DeVault and Esther Miller Waldron. Milton Henry DeVault began military service Korean War, U.S. Army, 2nd Infantry Div., 72nd Medium Tank Battallion, Co. C. He died on 6 September 1951 at Korea at age 29 Note from the WWI, WWII and Korean War Casualty Listing:

USMA Class of 1945, First Lieutenant De Vault was a veteran of World War II. In Korea, he was a member of Company C, 72nd Medium Tank Battalion, 2nd Infantry Division. He was Killed in Action while defending his position along the Naktong River near Yongsan, South Korea on September 6, 1950. First Lieutenant De Vault was awarded the Purple Heart, the Korean Service Medal, the United Nations Service Medal, the National Defense Service Medal, the Korean Presidential Unit Citation and the Republic of Korea War Service Medal.

MAGAZINE ARTICLE - Ladies Home Journal, February 15, 1951

My Son Died in Korea, by Mrs. David S. DeVault
Even when he was a little boy, Bud was a happy child. Everybody liked Bud. The minister said it when he came in after his death -- Bud always had a twinkle in his eye. He made you feel good.
Isn't it odd -- you'd think it would make me feel bad now to think about him, but it doesn't. I like to think about him.
You've heard about brothers who were friends too. Well, David and Bud were more than that. They were close, always close. "Why couldn't it have been me?" David said when he heard about it. "Everybody liked Bud." That was ridiculous, David is needed just as much as Bud was. But it shows you what Bud meant to him -- what he meant to all of us.
Bud was a towhead with blue eyes and a face full of sunshine. Yet he wasn't just happy-go-lucky. He was good. Not goody-goody -- but good. He liked to get his chores done before he went out to play. He did his homework every night. It's old-fashioned to talk about duty nowadays, but Bud had a sense of duty.
Maybe that's why he wanted to go to West Point. I don't know. You talk to your kids when they are young about the basic things -- like duty, and God. But when they grow up, you can't. You just have to feel your way along once they're grown up. Bud said he wanted to go to West Point because it offered him everything he wanted.
We didn't have much money then. After dad became ill, things weren't easy and Bud knew it. He knew an appointment to West Point would help -- he worked his way through one year at the University of Tennessee, though, before it came through. His competitive exams gave him the rank of second alternate -- two boys had to fail before he could get in. He never believed it would happen. He said if they placed higher on the tests than he did, then, of course, they must be brighter and better prepared and they'd make out. They didn't though. Bud wasn't really what you'd call brilliant, but he had something else. He stuck to things. He worked at them until they came out right.
Let me tell you how he graduated from West Point after those two other boys who had pre-West Point training failed. Bud had never had enough high-school math. And he didn't take any in Tennessee. So he got to West point, and maybe you don't know, but they take mathematics seriously. Bud had to go right into an advanced geometry course -- and sink or swim. Well, he worked on it. He worked so hard that his French suffered. In the middle of the semester it looked like he was gong to flunk both of them, and he called me up. "I'm going to resign," he said. "I thought you ought to know." I couldn't imagine it at first. It didn't seem like Bud. Then I thought about how he hated to fail in anything. So I said, all right, it's your life, but I'm going to come down there and talk to you about it before you do anything. I made him promise he'd wait. I took the next train down to West Point. We found out that two flunks would throw him out of school, but that if he had only one failure, he could get back in -- if he could make up the material he missed and pass tests on it. If he worked on his French now and his math later, he could still make it. There is a place he could go and get nothing but math, a school that specialized in helping West Pointers. It would take three months and $375. Bud, I said, you're a lot like me. If you quit now when you're licked, you'll never get over it. You go take that course, and get back in, and then, if you want to resign, you go ahead and resign.
I had to borrow the money, of course. But Bud tutored at Professor Silverman's, living in his house, for his three months, and then he took his tests and passed them. That summer he went to work to make the $375. The following spring I had to ask him, Bud, do you want to resign Now? "Mother," he said, "you knew me better than I knew myself." And when he got his diploma, do you know what he did? He gave it to me. "Here, you earned it," he said.
I remember when he was in Japan with the occupation. He liked Japan, but then he always liked any place he happened to be. But two years is a long time and he wanted to come home, and he wanted the feel of home. He wrote me that there were three things he wanted: a really beautiful set of golf clubs, a red convertible, and a dog.
Well, I knew I'd better let him get the golf clubs, but I put in for a car. They were hard to get then so I went right down when he wrote that. I even told the man it had to be red, but I didn't care what make it was.
That was about a year before he got home. A month before, I called up. No, he was still way down the list. I told them they just had to get me that car or him. I thought I wasn't going to be able to make it. It was 1948 by then, but they were still hard to get. Just a week before, though, the dealer called and he had a car. Said that it was really for someone else but they could wait. Only thing, it was a gray convertible.
He trusted me for the money and I got the car. Joan and I -- That's our youngest, she's only nineteen -- we went down to the station to meet him. I drove so carefully. When Bud saw the car, he acted like a kid. I'll never forget that ride home. He drove it as if it were a tank, and on the wrong side of the road too the way they do in Japan. The next day we got the dog -- a German shepherd, like one he had when he was a boy.
When he went back west, he drove out in that car, with the dog beside him. It was the last time I ever saw him. He wanted to get back home again, he planned it time and time again, but then there was Hawaii, and Alaska, and then just as he was starting his leave, Korea.
That's why I'm bringing his body home. He did so want to come back again. A West Point friend wanted him buried at the Academy, but I asked David and I asked Gayle -- that's Bud's wife . . . or bride, I Guess -- and they both said, "No, Bud wanted to come home."
Gayle will come with him when he comes. They got married just before he shipped out. I've never met her, but it was she who broke the news to me, not the Army. Someone at the post in Fort Lewis -- that's in Washington -- told her. She called me right away. She tried to tell me gently, but you can't tell something like that any way but straight out.
I thought it was David's wife calling -- they live in Yakima, near Tacoma, where Bud was. It was midnight here and I'd been asleep. But when she said Bud's name, I knew. Joan was just coming in the door and I was standing there, I couldn't say a word, and then I fainted. Joan picked up the phone, and I guess I came to for I went into dad's room. I shouldn't have -- it doesn't do with heart trouble to break news like that suddenly, but I wasn't thinking. I just put my head down on his bed and cried. Poor dad, he had to take care of me that night.
I don't know what went on that next week. It was like I was in a daze. I got somebody in, or they came in, and ran the nursery school -- I put the school in the house six years ago when I had to get some work, but I couldn't leave home. I remember, though, one morning I realized I had to go on living -- that Bud would have wanted me to. Something he said once came back to me suddenly. It was when my sister died. It sounded almost hardhearted to me at the time. He told me not to worry: "A thing that's over with is in the past," he said, "don't look back. Go on."
I took over the nursery that morning, but I didn't last the morning. There's a little prayer we say, and I got as far as the line "God is good" and it stuck in my throat. I couldn't say it. You can't help but think at a time like that that God has let you down. I pulled myself together that night, though, and thought about things.
There's a prayer the cadets say at West Point that helped me back. It always made my heart turn over when I heard them say it. It wasn't just their country they were trained to fight for, but God too. "Encourage us in our endeavor to live above the common level of life," they said. "Make us to choose the harder right instead of the easier wrong and never be content with a half truth when the whole can be won."
Bud chose the harder right. He didn't want to go. He didn't want to leave Gayle. He didn't want to ship out -- he wanted to drive east, and home. But he went, and he went willingly and ready to do his best. He said it when he was on the ship.
He called it a fast scribble. They were going to land at Pusan the next day and he wanted me to know where he was. Wait. I'll read it to you.
"I will miss Gayle, " he wrote, "But now we are on our way, I am glad. That sounds like an Army man, doesn't it? But knowing me, you can see why I feel that way -- I like to get things done rather than wait for them to happen."
All his letters were like that. It was only twenty-two days after he left that he was killed. The last letter I got was just before he crossed the Naktong River and went into action at Yongsan. He wrote so clearly about what went on. I could see it all. I followed him on a map. He thought a lot of the men with him, and told me how brave they were. He especially admired the marines there -- "Braver than ordinary people," he said they were.
His last letter made me so happy -- for, of course, I didn't know it was his last. He was still two miles behind the front and it looked like he might be held there awhile, though he was itching to move up. He was very optimistic: "When we get across the river, we'll really roll -- and push these jokers right back to the 38th parallel." He talked about how it would be over soon, how he would come home, where he would be assigned next after the war, and he wound up, just as always, saying, "Don't worry about me."
I wish I knew what happened then. People say I'm wrong to want to know how he died, that I shouldn't think about it. Bud would have told me, though. He'd know I couldn't sleep nights, imagining trying to live it to the end with him.
People ask me if I am bitter or resentful. No, I am neither. I am resigned. It is the part of mothers always to be giving. Sometimes it is a little; other times it is much. Occasionally we are called on to give our most. My consolation for Bud's loss lies in my faith that he is now "home" -- in "the house of many mansions." I feel we shall meet him again there.
We had a flag ceremony in the school. I don't think the youngsters get enough these days about their flag and what it stands for. I was playing The Star-Spangled Banner for them to march to and they were singing it, as best they could, the way children do, when I suddenly thought, "This is for Bud," and my hands started trembling. "He died for his country, and for these children, and millions of other children."
"One of my friends, who knew Bud from the time he was little, wrote me something I'll never forget. It made me feel proud and humble, both.
"Comfort yourself," she said, "with the knowledge that with all his fine abilities and his good record, he was ours."
Yes, God was good to me, I thought, I had a fine son.

He was buried in 1951 at Green Hill Cemetery, Amsterdam, Montgomery Co., NY.

Milton Tucker DeVault

M, b. 2 April 1849, d. 24 January 1922

A day or two ago I received a notice that the regular monthly meeting of Nomad Oasis would be held this evening May 9th. 1922, at the Union Club rooms, and in addition a farewell entertainment would be tendered to myself as the youngest or baby Noble of this Oasis. It being on the eve of my departure for homeside in the southland of the U.S.A.
Nobles, I would be recreant to all that is good in human nature if I did not try, however feeble and inadequate my efforts may be, to let you know what a wonderful gracious thing you have done unto me. My heart is overflowing with grateful thanks for the courteous kindness you have extended to me. It is like the dews of Heaven that settled on Aaron and ran down his beard even to the skirts of his garment.
I was told by the Chairman of your entertainment committee, Noble Lee C. Solomon, that I would be expected to make a little talk, and that I should have liberty of thought and freedom of speech. And now if you will bear with me a moment, I would like to tell you where I was born and spent my early boyhood days, but in doing so I quote a little from another who has long since passed over.
A little over seventy-three years ago I was born in upper East Tennessee in Happy Valley on the Watauga River, which in the Indian tongue means beautiful river – and beautiful river it is.
I sported on its banks in sunny childhood and looking down into its crystal waters have seen the heavens reflecting as in a mirror, the moon and stars, and the great Milky Way. Looking across the valley I could see the mountain ranges, the Smokeys and the great Roane rearing their heavy heads amongst the clouds, and on whose summit the storm king delights to rest. I have seen him arouse as from slumber, shake himself and let loose the rumbling thunders, and have seen the lightning flash swifter then as eagle’s flight along the mountain side.
And again at day dawn I have seen the sun come forth over the mountain top and shed its light and warmth over the hills and valleys, bringing joy and gladness, love and hope to the people.
Amid these surroundings I spent my boyhood days, until the great Civil War broke over our fair land bringing its train of evil and bloodshed, arraying neighbor against neighbor, and brother against brother.
It was during the strife and horrors of this war that I caught my first glimpse, as a boy, of Masonry.
One day I was caught and became an unwilling witness at close quarters, of a battle between two opposing companies. I saw men shot down and heard their screams of agony above the roar of guns; I saw a soldier shot from his horse, wounded unto death; I saw him crawl across the road and try to pull himself up by the panels of a fence.
I heard him in his agony speaking strange words, and saw him make peculiar signs, and to my astonishment saw a white-headed man come out of a nearby house, run to the wounded soldier, and cover him with his old body, right in the midst of this awful strife, and at the imminent risk of his own life. Stranger still, the dying soldier wore the gray, and the old man who went to his relief was a Union man and in sympathy with the other side – I knew him as a neighbor. When the battle passed on and I was able to get back to my home, I told my father of the occurrence and asked him why Mr. Bradley would do such a wonderful deed. My father, with tears in his eyes, said, “My son, they were Masons.
Then and there I determined to become a Mason – do you wonder?
Masonry is a living thing comparable to a great, good man having eyes, ears, feet, hands, and above all a great heart.
Eyes to see the sign of distress; ears to hear the cry for help; feet to run swiftly to the relief of those in trouble; hands to sooth the fevered brow and relieve agony and distress; and a heart, a great throbbing heart, to feel for those who suffer, weep with the sorrowful, and rejoice with the happy.
That is the mission of masonry on this earth; it knows no religious creed except the brotherhood of man, and love which is charity.
Brothers, when you go out and mingle with the world, amidst its concerns and employments, forget not the tenants you have heard so often inculcated within the sacred precincts of the lodge. Remember that every human being has a claim on your kind office. Do good unto all, more especially to the household of the faithful.
Wherever you may go on this earth, North, South, East or West, around and across even to the farthest corners thereof, there a mason may be found, and as unbounded should a mason’s charity be.
Now sir Nobles, I have exercised liberty of speech, and have rambled around, nevertheless, I want you to know and believe that my heart is filled to overflowing with love for each and all of you. And now sirs, let me enjoin upon you in parting to keep ever in mind the insignia of your membership in the Mystic Shrine and what it stands for. Live up to it and so order your lives and conduct that when the Great Artificer of the Universe shall call you from the terrestrial lodge to the celestial shrine above, it may be said to you at the entrance, “You have been examined and found worthy – Enter, and don’t forget your Fez.”
I have done, and now turn you loose. Enjoy yourselves.

Milton Tucker DeVault was born on 2 April 1849 at Elizabethton, Carter Co., TN. He was the son of George Henry DeVault and Emily Seraphina Berry. Milton Tucker DeVault married Timmie Eugenia Cardwell, daughter of James Henry Cardwell and Hazel Sullins, on 28 May 1874 at Bristol Independent City, VA. Milton Tucker DeVault died on 24 January 1922 at on a train near, Chicago, Cook Co., IL, at age 72 REMEMBERING MILTON TUCKER DeVAULT

Milton Tucker DeVault, sailed from Seattle, Washington, after a visit of several days with his brother John J. DeVault, on the 16th day of September for Shanghai, China, and arrived there October 11, 1921, and after visiting his son Henry S. and daughter Emily, who are residents of Shanghai, for seven months, he sailed from Shanghai, on the 11th day of May 1922, after a very pleasant voyage of many days just before reaching San Francisco, Cal. on June 2nd he was taken seriously ill of heart trouble and when he landed June 4th had to be removed to the Mount Zion Hospital at No. 2200 Post Street, San Francisco, where he was met by his brother John J. DeVault, of Seattle, Washington, and much surprised to find him ill, as he had anticipated much pleasure from the meeting, but gave him every attention possible, and was with him for some days and it was thought he was improving and on the 12th day of June he returned to his home in Seattle. Wash. believing his brother would recover, and as D. Sullins DeVault, of Syracuse, N.Y. had arrived and was at the bedside of his father, giving every attention to his wants and needs, after a consultation with his Doctors it was thought best to remove him to his home in Syracuse, N.Y.
On the 21st day of June, 1922, the father, son and Nurse began the journey in a very comfortable Pulman Car and receiving the very best attention and seeming to be doing well, but when near Chicago, Ill. at about 3 o’clock A.M. Saturday June 24th he passed away.
At Chicago, his remains, in company of his son Sullins, began the long journey for Bristol, Virginia, where they arrived Monday June 26th at 1:20 P.M. and was taken to the home of Mr. & Mrs. E. S. Kendrick, his sister, 127 Solar Street, Bristol, Virginia, where his remains were viewed by a great many of his former associates and friends. The funeral service was conducted Tuesday June 27th at State Street M. E. Church South, at 11 o’clock A.M. where he was formerly a member and for a number of years a member of the official board, Dr. J. Watson, and Dr. D. S. Hearon, officiating.
Dr. Hearon referred to the fact that he had known Mr. DeVault, for a number of years and that when he came to Bristol, (then Goodson) Virginia, and later married and then occupied a brick dwelling on James Street, just opposite the home of Mr. DeVault, where the two families became the very best of friends, and that one evening Mrs. Hearon said she heard someone singing and she went to the door and listening for a short time said she recognized the voice of Robert L. Taylor, the later was Congressman, Governor, and later United States Senator of Tennessee, and that he and Mrs. Hearon went over to Mr. DeVault’s home and heard Mr. Taylor sing a number of songs and among them “Grandfather’s Clock.” Said he knew him as a member of State Street Church, as a member of the Board of Stewards also as a Trustee of Sullins College and that he performed the duties of these positions in an intelligent and satisfactory manner, giving freely of his time and means for the promotion of the best interest of his Church, City and State, and continued his interest in these enterprises, as shown by his always being connected with his church after leaving Bristol and the impression he made upon those he came in contact by being made on the Official Board in every church where he was connected, and he paid a high tribute to his life and character.
Doctor N. M. Watson, read from a letter written to his sister Mrs. E. S. Kendrick, dated January 29th 1920, “We, that is Father, Mother, I, you and John left Elizabethton, Tennessee about 2 o’clock on the morning of October 3rd 1865 with all of our worldly goods in two covered wagons and landed in Goodson, (now Bristol, Va.) about 2 o’clock that afternoon and by night had bought the Isaac Nickels house, (Blanch Nickels father.) on Main Street, (now State Street) the next door west of the old brick house we afterwards swapped for with old Mr. Ayelett, and which was our home until Ma went to live with you and you now own. It was probably a year after reaching Bristol that I became a member of the M. E. Church South the church being located on Lee Street just North of what is now the Virginia & Southwestern Railway and before I was married and made a steward in the church, (I married in May 1874) and was a steward from that time until I left Bristol for Baltimore, Md. in 1899. I and all of my family joined the Madison Avenue M. E. Church, South, Baltimore, Md. and I was soon elected a member of the official board of that church.
My transfer is now in progress to join Church Street M. E. Church South here in Knoxville, Tennessee.
To the best of my recollection my wife as Timmie E. Cardwell, joined the old church on Lee Street in 1873.
Our children were born, baptized and raised in the Bristol Church and three of the family were buried there all lying now in East Hill Cemetery, Hazel the first born, then Clyde, then my wife, this leaves Myself, Sullins, Henry and Emily, Sullins here with me, Henry and Emily in Shanghai, China.
I get very sad sometimes and miss the loved ones, but keep a cheerful exterior, and no matter what other or others may say – I am clear and sure that “I have kept the faith” “I have fought a good fight” and I have no fear.”
His remains were then conveyed to East Hill Cemetery and laid to rest in the family plot by loving hands to await the resurrection day.

Active pall bearers were Judge Joseph L. Kelly, Charles J. Harkrader, H. G. Lavinder, R. M. Crumley, Frank Miller, and A. B. Whiteaker; honorary pall bearers; Maj. A. D. Reynolds, Maj. W. G. Sheen, J. N. Huntsman, E. W. King, C. L. Sevier, Judge H. H. Haynes, Judge C. J. St. John, W. H. Fillinger, J. M. Barker, Sam L. King, and John H. Caldwell;
Flower bearers, Joe Pilo, H. E. Graves, W. L. Morely, Anson King, H. G. Peters, J. D. Taylor, George H. Davis, J. B. Lyon, A. F. Pepper, Gordon C. Faqua.


Word was received in Shanghai yesterday by Henry S. DeVault, of Haskins and Sells, of the death at New York City of his father Colonel Milton Tucker De Vault, who had been in Shanghai from October of last year until May 11, when he sailed for America. Colonel De Vault, who was born in Knoxville, Tenn., and served in the Confederate Army, celebrated his seventy-third birthday in Shanghai on April 2. He having been an extensive coal operator and financier, but had retired several years ago. He came to Shanghai to attend the wedding of his daughter, Mrs. V. A. Padon.

Note: The above death notice contains a number of factual errors: Milton Tucker DeVault was not born in Knoxville, he did not die in New York City and he probably did not serve in the Confederate Army. His daughter married B. A. Padon.

Children of Milton Tucker DeVault and Timmie Eugenia Cardwell

Myrtle Iva DeVault

F, b. 13 December 1895, d. 28 January 1929
     Myrtle Iva DeVault was born on 13 December 1895 at Palo Alto Co., IA. She was the daughter of James Monroe DeVault and Gertrude Letta Salyers. Myrtle Iva DeVault married Harry Jacob Kime, son of Mark John Kime and Eva Matilda Dietz, on 22 November 1914 at Indianola, Warren Co., IA. Myrtle Iva DeVault died on 28 January 1929 at Iowa at age 33. She was buried in 1929 at Norwalk Cemetery, Norwalk, Warren Co., IA, Findagrave #24685007.

Children of Myrtle Iva DeVault and Harry Jacob Kime

Naida C. DeVault

F, b. circa August 1915
     Naida C. DeVault was born circa August 1915 at Seattle, King Co., WA. She was the daughter of John Jacob DeVault and Minnie D. Gaedecke.

Nancy Louise DeVault

F, b. 2 May 1895, d. 2 March 1985
     Nancy Louise DeVault was born on 2 May 1895 at McDowell Co., NC. She was the daughter of Hugh Alexander Tate DeVault and Mary Alice Brown. Nancy Louise DeVault died on 2 March 1985 at Morganton, Burke Co., NC, at age 89. She was buried in March 1985 at Glen Alpine Methodist Church Cemetery, Glen Alpine, Burke Co., NC.

Did not marry.

Nancy Margaret DeVault

F, b. 1773, d. 2 September 1847
     Nancy Margaret DeVault was born in 1773 at Pennsylvania. She married John Henry Jones.
Note: Not a Henry DeWalt decendant. Nancy Margaret DeVault died on 2 September 1847 at Pennsylvania.

Children of Nancy Margaret DeVault and John Henry Jones


  1. [S1277] 1850 Federal Census, Sullivan County, Tennessee. Microfilm Image, NARA Series M432, Roll 897.

Neil Augustus DeVault

M, b. May 1889, d. 1928
     Neil Augustus DeVault was born in May 1889 at Greene Co., TN.1 He was the son of John Augustus DeVault and Mary Eleanor McClellan. Neil Augustus DeVault died in 1928. He was buried in 1928 at River Hill United Methodist Church Cemetery, Greeneville, Greene Co., TN.


  1. [S1250] 1900 Federal Census, Greene County, Tennessee. Microfilm Image, NARA Series T623, Roll 1573; FHL #1241573.

Nell Ruth DeVault

F, b. 1 July 1913, d. 22 November 1987
     Nell Ruth DeVault was born on 1 July 1913 at Shelbyville, Shelby Co. (probably), IN. She was the daughter of William Walker DeVault and Estella Mae Pence. Nell Ruth DeVault died on 22 November 1987 at Decatur Co., IN, at age 74 Dates per SSDI, last residence Westport.

Nellie K. DeVault1

F, b. 27 January 1874, d. 8 February 1898
     Nellie K. DeVault was born on 27 January 1874 at Washington Co., TN.1 She was the daughter of Valentine DeVault and Florence Allison. Nellie K. DeVault died on 8 February 1898 at Washington Co., TN, at age 24. She was buried in February 1898 at Allison-Boring-Hodges Cemetery, Oak Grove, Washington Co., TN, Find A Grave Memorial# 24617818.


  1. [S464] 1880 Federal Census, Washington County, Tennessee. Microfilm Image, NARA T9, Roll 1284; FHL #1255284.

Newland Alfred Devault

M, b. 11 February 1896, d. November 1976
     Newland Alfred Devault was born on 11 February 1896 at Farber, Audrain Co., MO. He was the son of Charles Alfred Davault and Susie S. Newland. Newland Alfred Devault was educated; Attended the University of Missouri and the University of Oklahoma. He married Florence Pearl Conner on 20 February 1926 at Chandler, Lincoln Co., OK.

Newland was using the DaVault spelling for his surname in 1926 when he married Florence Conner. He mentioned in one letter that his mother told him that his middle name was "Alfred" and his father told him that he didn't have a middle name. In the Oklahoma early marriage records he is listed as N. A. DaVault.

Newland conducted extensive research in the DeVault/DeWald genealogy, and eventually published a 287-page history and genealogy of the descendants of Henrich Dewald in 1975, a year before his death.

Newland Alfred Devault died in November 1976 at Banning, Riverside Co., CA, at age 80.

Child of Newland Alfred Devault and Florence Pearl Conner

Olive Ruth DeVault

F, b. 22 October 1929, d. 4 May 1984
     Olive Ruth DeVault was born on 22 October 1929 at Des Moines, Polk Co., IA. She was the daughter of Edward Monroe DeVault and Ethel Agnes Higens. Olive Ruth DeVault married Gilbert Junior Overlin, son of Gilbert Willard Overlin and Ethel Aleta Scott, on 13 January 1951 at Mitchellville, Polk Co., IA. Olive Ruth DeVault died on 4 May 1984 at Des Moines, Polk Co., IA, at age 54.

Orgie Milton DeVault1

M, b. 10 May 1878, d. 11 October 1934
     Orgie Milton DeVault was born on 10 May 1878 at Sullivan Co. (probably), TN.1 He was the son of John David DeVault and Nancy Melvina Hartness. Orgie Milton DeVault married Georgia Sprinkle Meredith, daughter of Truman Bullard Meredith and Ella Raider. Orgie Milton DeVault died on 11 October 1934 at Knoxville, Knox Co., TN, at age 56. He was buried in October 1934 at Rock Springs Cemetery, Rock Springs, Sullivan Co., TN.

Children of Orgie Milton DeVault and Georgia Sprinkle Meredith


  1. [S1256] 1880 Federal Census, Sullivan County, Tennessee. Microfilm Image, NARA Series T9, Roll 1281; FHL #1255281.

Pearl Hazel DeVault

F, b. 22 April 1875, d. 23 June 1876
     Pearl Hazel DeVault was born on 22 April 1875 at Bristol Independent City, VA. She was the daughter of Milton Tucker DeVault and Timmie Eugenia Cardwell. Pearl Hazel DeVault died on 23 June 1876 at Bristol Independent City, VA, at age 1. She was buried in June 1876 at East Hill Cemetery, Bristol, Sullivan Co., TN.

Rachel Mary DeVault

F, b. 1821, d. 15 October 1900
     Rachel Mary DeVault was born in 1821 at Hanover, York Co., PA. She was the daughter of Jacob Davault and Rachel Dorothy Kitzmiller. Rachel Mary DeVault married Thomas Hyder Hunt, son of Henson Hunt and Mary Pope, on 28 October 1837 at Washington Co., TN. Rachel Mary DeVault died on 15 October 1900 at Kansas City, Jackson Co., MO. She was buried in October 1900 at Reader Cemetery, 4 miles NE of Chesterfield, Macoupin Co., IL, according to Newland DeVault, but Tracy DeVault says he visited this cemetery and there is no evidence that Rachel (DeVault) Hunt was buried there, despite the stone for her husband and son James which is there.
Note: Remarks by William Bruce Gillmore:

Grandmother, Rachael DeVault Hunt, was about eight years old when her mother died and her sister, Susan was a year younger. Their father did not marry Elizabeth Scott until about 1835. During the years that he was a widower, the little girls spent much time at the home of Warrington and their sister, Maria Catharina (DeVault) Hunt. Their father complained that at home there were only the slave children with whom they could play. At sister Maria Catharina's there was their cousin, Louisa Ann Eliza (Lou) to play with, and no doubt the little girls fared better there than they would at home where they would be cared for by the slaves.

It was here with Warrington and sister Kate that Grandmother learned to spin, weave and sew, also to tailor men's clothing, an art that her sister had learned from her DeVault ancestors. Also it was here that Rachal met and married Warrington's brother, Thomas Hyder Hunt, when she was sixteen years old.

Rachel and Susan were always very close, and I was grown before I knew that Grandmother had other sisters and brothers. Apparently, she did not get to know her step-mother very well. I can recall no stories concerning her, but I never heard an unkind word about Elizabeth. She seems to have been a quiet, retiring woman who busied herself with her household, and had little time for visiting.

In 1850, Thomas Hyder Hunt took his family and with a number of relatives and friends, went by covered wagon to Illinois. It was quite a caravan, a dozen or more wagons. Mother was six years old and remembered many incidents of the long journey.

At that time the economy of Tennessee was based upon slave labor, and slaves were expensive, costing from $500.00 to $1500.00. My mother remembered a wedding at which the father presented the bride with a slave girl, and the tale was that it was a $500.00 present. Under such conditions, a poor man who had to buy land and slaves had a hard time getting ahead. Illinois offered better opportunities. Land was cheap and a man and his family did the work and every one was on the same footing.

In the party making the trip were Grandmother's brother, Michael DeVault, and her sister Susan (DeVault) Duncan and their families. Thomas Hyder Hunt's sister, Elizabeth (Hunt) Peugh and family were also in the caravan, and there may have been other relatives. There were also many friends who went along.

They settled in Macoupin County, Western Mound Township, where the family of Thomas Hyder Hunt lived until 1869, when they migrated to Barton County, Missouri. Near here, in the Reader Cemetery four miles north and a little east of Chesterfield, Thomas Hyder Hunt and his son James were buried and in 1900 Rachel Hunt was taken to lie beside them.

Some time after 1860, Michael DeVault and family moved to Pike County and Joseph and Susan (DeVault) Duncan with their family moved to Macon County.

When Jacob Hunt came home from the war in 1865, at the age of 22, he found himself the head of the family, his father and older brothers having died. Mary Emily and Louise were young ladies, but Belvia, Eliza, Bruce and Julia were children.

The family had suffered reverses. The oldest son, James, and the father had died. The boys who were old enough to farm had been drafted, probably because they were southerners, and the widow and the children left to do the best they could. Taxes and interest went unpaid while Henson and Jacob were in the army. So Jacob gave up the farm and went to Pike County and settled near Pittsfield near his Uncle Michael DeVault. They lived there until 1869. It was there that Mary Emily Hunt married Ephraim B. Gillmore.

In 1871, Jacob rented the Stephens farm. It was one mile square, 640 acres, with plenty of running water, some woods, and pasture land and fertile fields. By now Bruce was old enough to make a hand in the field. The farm is one half mile west of Kenoma, Missouri. Later the Ft. Scott and Memphis railroad crossed the farm near the house. They were six miles south and east of Lamar.

It was here that Louise was twice married; first to Oscar Hannah, and after his death, to Frank Barrett, who was a civil engineer on the construction of the new railroad. Here also, Belva married Reason Burr, and Eliza married John Lindsey.

After some sixteen years on the farm, Jacob had a sale and went to Lamar and opened a bank, and later engaged in other business activities until about 1890, when he and Bruce moved to Bates County and located near Adrain. A few years later they went to Indian Territory and prospered. Jacob lived for many years at Alex, Oklahoma where he died. For a few years, Bruce farmed near DeRider, Louisiana and later moved to Jackson County, Missouri. There he, Alice and their daughter, Mildred died.

This brief story would be incomplete without mentioning Walter Howey (born October 4, 1873, married Effie Hampton, December 1, 1901 and died June 12, 1954), a boy whom Jacob raised, and who grew up as one of our cousins. Walter and his younger brother, Edward, lost both of their parents at about the same time by pneumonia when Walter was about four years old. An improvident neighbor family by the name of Denham was caring for the little boys, and appealed to the authorities for relief. The county authorities, being unable to locate any relatives of the little boys, were looking for homes for them. Jacob agreed to take Walter, but as he was a bachelor, refused to adopt the child. Edward was adopted by a family by the name of Sharp. Mrs. Sharp was a sister to Celestia Stuart Peugh, and lived west of Lamar. So the little boys were almost in the same family, and grew up knowing each other. These boys never gave their foster parents any grief, and grew up to be fine men. In Bates County, when Walter became twenty-one, Jacob helped him get started farming. He went to the Indian Territory with them. There he married and later settled in Missouri, nine miles west of Jasper City. He raised a fine family of six children, and they were all doing well when last I visited them in 1928.

Children of Rachel Mary DeVault and Thomas Hyder Hunt

Rachel Sophia DeVault

F, b. 20 December 1865, d. 13 April 1951
     Rachel Sophia DeVault was born on 20 December 1865 at Glen Alpine, Burke Co., NC, 1900 census shows birth year 1866. She was the daughter of Jacob A. DeVault and Mary Ann Alexander. Rachel Sophia DeVault married Marshall Rankin McLean, son of James McLean and Isabelle Catherine DeVault, on 18 September 1890.
Note: It was said that Sophia once killed a mountain lion with a gun. When an article appeared in the local paper, describing the incident, future husband Marshall Rankin McLean wrote to her. This correspondance eventually led to their marriage.

Although she lost two sons to airplane crashes, she was a frequent passenger until her health prevented it. Rachel Sophia DeVault died on 13 April 1951 at Gibsonville, Guilford Co., NC, at age 85. She was buried in April 1951 at Friedens Lutheran Church Cemetery, Gibsonville, Guilford Co., NC.

Children of Rachel Sophia DeVault and Marshall Rankin McLean

Ralph Earl DeVault

M, b. 11 December 1920, d. 15 February 1987
     Ralph Earl DeVault was born on 11 December 1920 at Shelbyville, Shelby Co. (probably), IN. He was the son of William Walker DeVault and Estella Mae Pence. Ralph Earl DeVault married Mary Elizabeth Miller, daughter of Leslie Thomas Miller and Anna Elizabeth McBee, on 13 April 1940 at Marion Co., IN, Mary later married William Koopman. Ralph Earl DeVault married Hazel Irene DeBaun, daughter of Charles E. DeBaun and Minnie E. Schonfield, in 1942. Ralph Earl DeVault died on 15 February 1987 at Indianapolis, Marion Co., IN, at age 66

OBITUARY - The Indianapolis Star; Indianapolis, Indiana; Tuesday, February 17, 1987; Page 31

Ralph E. DeVault
Shelbyville, Ind. -- Services for Ralph E. DeVault, 66, a lifelong Shelby County resident, will be at 11 a.m. Wednesday in Ewing Mortuary, Shelbyville, with calling from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. today. He died Sunday in Community Hospital. He had been an engineer for TriState Construction Co. 30 years, retiring in 1979. He was a World War II Army veteran and a member of Brookfield Baptist Church, Shelbyville Masonic Lodge 28, York Rite, Scottish Rite and Murat Temple. Memorial contributions may be made to the St. Vincent Hospital Outpatient Dialysis Center. Survivors: wife, Hazel I. DeBaun DeVault; daughters, Tessa Pursley, Lana Reinhart, Donna Smith and Terry Whicker; sisters, Betty Lamb, Nell Anderson, Harriet Kiplinger and Melvina Brinkley; brothers, Roy, Fred and Harry DeVault; seven grandchildren.

He was buried in February 1987 at Winchester Cemetery, Shelby Co., IN.
Note: Ralph and Hazel DeVault appear to have raised four children of Dale and Emma (Utsler) Cole after the death of their mother in 1953. The foster arrangement may or may not have been legally documented.

Child of Ralph Earl DeVault and Mary Elizabeth Miller

Child of Ralph Earl DeVault and Hazel Irene DeBaun