52 Ancestors #8 Gabriel Westfall – Sometime clergyman

I am writing this week about Gabriel Westfall who was born about 1828 to Elizabeth (Clark) and John Westfall. He is the brother to our 2x great grandmother (on the maternal side), Jane Westfall. Family Letters to John Lyle Dougherty during the Civil War (our great grandfather) gave news to John about his family back in Pennsylvania, and as I got to know them through these letters, I thought you might like to know about them also.
In the 1850 census we have Gabriel at 22 living in his fathers household with his brothers William (31 years old), Solomon (26), John (17), sisters Maria (20), Mary C. (Kate?) (14) and Amelia A. (sister-in-law, Williams wife) Westfall (24) and 10 month old baby Franklin son of William and Amelia. Gabriel is listed as a student. Gabriel’s mother had died 11 years earlier in 1839 ( Source: hand written family tree from Milford Historical Society).

1850 US Census Pike Co., Pennsylvania pg. 24
1850 US Census Pike Co., Pennsylvania pg. 24

In 1860 I have not been able to locate him in the US Census. But Aunt Kate’s letter to John dated Jan. 3rd, 1864


Gabe went down

To Washington with the intention of going

In the Army, if he could not get the

Chaplanry. He was advised while there not

To go in the army a tall so he said he

Yielded to their advice and paid $300

The file below shows his draft registration. He is listed as 35, occupation clergyman, and single.

US Civil War Draft Registrations  dated July 1863
US Civil War Draft Registrations dated July 1863

Again the 1870 US census I have found no record of Gabriel. Yet in the records of deeds for Wayne Co. Pennsylvania we find a parcel of land  listed as Owned by Reverend G. Westfall  (1873). This is when I presume he married and settled down with wife Sarah.

Wayne County Deeds, Source: Ancestry .com
Wayne County Deeds, Source: Ancestry .com

In 1880 US Census Wayne Co. Pennsylvania we find Gabriel (age 53) Occupation: Farmer, Married to Sarah M. (40) with children John (7), Ruth (5), Nellie (3), and Eddie (1) along with step children Wm. C. Swingle (17), Oscar (15), and Freddie (13) all three shown as laborers.

1880 US Census Wayne Co., Pennsylvania pg. 24
1880 US Census Wayne Co., Pennsylvania pg. 24

The 1900 US Census finds Gabriel in Lewis County Washington age 72 wd, Occupation: Farming.

In the 1910 Census Shows Gabe 82 years old a widow, Occupation:  Clergyman, retired

From Ancestry.com we get the following for Washignton (State) Gabriel Westfall b: abt 1828, age at death: 83, date of death: March 24, 19ll, Death location: Spanaway, Pierce, Washington, Father: John Westfall, Mother: Elizabeth.

What is interesting is that in 1898 – 1910 we find his wife Sarah  Westfall listed in Binghamton City,  New York Directory: Westfall, Sarah M (widow of Gabriel), h 139 Murray (1910) and she remains in the area until her death in the 1920’s