By Dorothy Dean Viets Schell, Gateway Press, Baltimore, 1990



1-5-1-1. Deborah Viets

Deborah Viets, daughter of John Jr. and Elizabeth (Phelps) Viets, was born in Simsbury June 25, 1757 and baptized July 31. She married Charles Case, supposed to have been born in Simsbury July 19, 1754, son of Charles and Phoebe (Holcomb?) Case. They had 3 children. Charles served in the Revolutionary War as a cornet in the Fifth Regiment of Light Horse Cavalry under Major Elisha Sheldon. Charles led his troop in the attack on the forces of General Burgoyne at the Battle of Bennington, Vermont, in 1776. Although Charles accompanied Washington in his retreat through New Jersey, his first term of service was relatively short, since he enlisted in October and was discharged in November. Whether he saw other action is not known, but the gravestone of his wife calls him a captain and he was known as a captain during the time he lived in Ohio. 

The gravestone in the Simsbury Cemetery bears the following inscription: "Deborah wife of Capt. Charles Case died February 5, 1796, aged 56 years." If this inscription refers to Deborah Viets, as it no doubt does, there must be an error in her age at time of death. Charles Case married on December 29, 1796 in Simsbury a second wife, Ameda Elizabeth Burbank, and about 1798 emigrated from Simsbury to Ohio. He stopped a while in New Jersey, later in Susquehanna County, Pennsylvania, to the Ohio towns of Warren, Youngstown (1800), Kinsman (1802), and Williamsfield (1803) where he resided until his death in 1829 or 1830.

When Charles Case, his second wife, and his son Zopher from his first marriage settled in Williamsfield they found twenty to thirty families of Massasaugas Indians of the Delaware Tribe. The Indians were friendly and religious. The Case family were the first settlers, having come from Simsbury by way of Pittsburgh with wagons drawn by oxen over the Pennsylvania mountains. They remained the only white settlers until 1806. A son born to Captain Case and his wife in 1806 was the first white child to be born in the area. [Ellsworth, Historical Sketches of Ashtabula   County, Ohio.] Charles Case had four children by his second wife.

Reference: Mary Ley (Carter) Brown, Phoenix, Arizona, descendant.


1-5-1-2. Hezekiah Phelps Viets


Hezekiah Phelps Viets, son of John Jr. and Elizabeth (Phelps) Viets, was born in Hop Meadow, Simsbury, December 24, 1759. He was not quite 6 years of age when his father died. At a freemen's meeting held in Simsbury April 10, 1779 he was among those "admitted and sworn." He was a fence-viewer in Simsbury in 1780. He served in the Revolutionary War in the Sixth Brigade, Eighteenth Regiment, made up in Simsbury and vicinity, under Captain Job Case and Colonel Phelps, from his time of arrival in New York, August 24, 1776 to September 19, 1776 when he was discharged.


On April 24, 1781, Hezekiah P. Viets and his brother John appeared before the Simsbury probate court as heirs of John Viets Jr. and the court appointed administrators to distribute land belonging to them in Salmon Brook [Granby]. In the 1790 census of Pownal, Vermont, he is listed with four males under sixteen and two females.

If Hezekiah Viets of Darke County, Ohio, is the first child of Hezekiah Phelps Viets, it would seem that his mother, the first wife of Hezekiah Phelps, must have died before 1783. The Pownal, Vermont, birth record for Truman, the second child of Hezekiah Phelps, lists him as the "first" child of Mary. Hezekiah Phelps remarried about 1798 (as his third wife?) Martha Bronson, daughter of Levi and Abigail (Henderson) Bronson of Kent, Connecticut.

Hezekiah Phelps lived in Pownal, Vermont; Dutchess, Saratoga, and Ulster Counties, New York; and in Kent, Connecticut. In 1822 he moved to Sugarloaf Township, Columbia County, Pennsylvania. The administration of his estate is dated 15 May 1824. His wife Martha renounced her right as administrator to their son Chauncey which establishes the child-parent relationship of the four youngest children. [For further history of this family see Schell, A Viets Genealogy.]

[Note: Both Francis Hubbard Viets and H. Isabel Viets placed some of the children of Hezekiah Phelps Viets in the appendix as "probably descended from Dr. John and Catharine Viets, but the descent has yet to be proved." This is my direct line and I have done much research that indicates these were the children of Hezekiah Phelps Viets by at least two wives, and possibly three. I feel that I have proved to my own satisfaction that the children listed are, indeed, those of Hezekiah Phelps Viets. Very little positive documentation has been found although much circumstantial evidence abounds. For further substantiation see the sections on the children listed below.—DVS]

Child by first marriage:

1-5-1-2-1. Hezekiah Viets, born ca 1780

Children by second (?) marriage:

1-5-1-2-2. Truman Viets, born January 24, 1784, married Elizabeth Jordan, 3 children, died in Winona County MN

1-5-1-2-3. Salmon Viets, born March 11, 1787, married Mary Andrews, 3 children, thought to have died in the War of 1812

1-5-1-2-4. Son, born ca 1789-1790, probably in Pownal, Vermont. May be Zopher Viets, adopted by his father's sister, Elizabeth (Viets) Colton. It is possible that his mother (Mary?) died shortly after his birth as his father was remarried with several younger children by 1800.

Children by third (?) marriage:

1-5-1-2-5. Harvey Viets, born ca 1799

1-5-1-2-6. Chauncey Viets, born ca 1800 NY, married Emily Bartleson, 7 children, early settler (1836) of Calhoun Co MI, , died April 29, 1858, Albion MI

1-5-1-2-7. Ira Viets, born ca 1802, moved to OH

1-5-1-2-8. Belinda Viets, born ca 1804. She was listed in the Viets Genealogy as a sister to Harvey, Chauncey, and Ira. The 1810 census of Ulster   County, New York, lists a female in the household that fits this age bracket. No further record.

1-5-1-3. Elizabeth Viets

Elizabeth Viets, daughter of John Jr. and Elizabeth (Phelps) Viets, was born in Simsbury February 15, 1762 and baptized June 6. She married Eliakim Colton, born in Stafford June 12, 1749, son of the Reverend Eli and Eunice (Smith) Colton of Simsbury. Eli Colton was graduated from Yale College in 1737, and was a son of the Reverend Benjamin Colton, who was the first minister of the West Hartford Congregational Church.


Eliakim Colton served in the army of the Revolution in the 5th Regiment Connecticut Volunteers, Colonel Philip B. Bradley, from July 1 to December 13, 1780; also under Lieutenant Hays, August and September 1776. He died September 23, 1807, age fifty-eight years. His tombstone is in the Simsbury Cemetery. Mr. and Mrs. Colton had no children of their own, but raised a boy, recorded as Zopher Viets. He kept his original name. [He may have been Elizabeth's nephew, son of Hezekiah Phelps Viets.] Elizabeth Colton died July 12, 1827, age sixty-six, and is buried in the Granby Cemetery beside her foster son and his wife. [Tombstone.]


1-5-1-4. John Viets


John Viets, son of John Jr. and Elizabeth (Phelps) Viets, was born in Simsbury about 1764 and was about one year of age at the time of his father's death. His birth is not recorded on the town records with those of the three older children. He is mentioned, however, in his father's will, found at the Hall of Records, Hartford, signed January 11, 1765 as follows: "I give to my beloved sons Hezekiah Phelps Viets and John Viets, the sum of 120 pounds each." His name again appears on the probate record with that of his brother Hezekiah P. as one of the heirs of John Viets Jr. At a freemen's meeting held in Simsbury, April 7, 1788, among those "admitted and sworn" was John Viets afterwards of Westfield, Massachusetts. He was a farmer.


The town records of Simsbury mention Lois, daughter of Ebenezer and Susannah Phelps, born in Simsbury about 1770. This may be the Lois who became the wife of John Viets of Westfield. Thus grandfather and grandson of the same name married wives of the same name. John and Lois Viets had 4 children.

The Viets Genealogy states "Mr. Viets removed with his family about 1800 to Rome, New York, where he died. The widow, with the children, soon returned to Westfield, where she died in 1847." The 1800 date must be an error. According to Westfield records, John Viets' name was on the long list for the jury box in Westfield which was accepted August 16, 1813. He was also listed in the 1820 census in Westfield, Massachusetts.

Their daughter Lois married a William Brumley; in the 1840 census for New Hartford, Oneida County, New   York, a William Bromley is listed with persons in the household that would also fit the ages of John and Lois Viets. Harvey Viets, son of John, also had a daughter born in Utica in 1826. Since Rome, Utica, and New Hartford are all in the same area it would appear that the family may indeed have lived in this area and that John Viets died there. No positive documentation of this has yet been found.

Lois Viets' date of death is given as May 19, 1846 in the Agawam Congregational Church Records.   [VR, West Springfield, Massachusetts.] The death of a "Mr. Viets" is listed as September 4, 1847. The latter may be for their son Harvey who was listed in the 1840 census at West Springfield.

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