WestVirginiaCemeteryPreservationAssociation

Cemetery Reading

Cemetery Name:

Rankin Hill


Aerial photo marking locations of Rankin Hill and Jesse Hill Cemeteries

Click on image image above for
directions to the cemetery

County: Mason
USGS Quad: Robertsburg
Coordinates: 38.7675N  -82.0144W
Maintained by: not maintained
Land owner: Lannes Williamson Pallet Company
Date added to WVCPA register: September 2005
Condition of cemetery**: Abandoned (August 2005)
Accessibility: This is a small cemetery located at Southside in Arbuckle District.  The photo above identifies where it is located in relation to the main highway. After you turn into Lannes Williamson Pallet Co. (and let someone there know what you're up to!), walk around the left side of the building and back around the rear till you see a small rock cliff.  Walk up the hill from the left of the cliff until you see the clearing and an opening through the fence.  See "Comments" section at the bottom of this page for more details.

** Condition of cemetery as observed on the given date -
may not be representative of care at other times of the year
Scale: Excellent - Good - Fair - Poor - Abandoned

 

Last Name: First Name:

Born:

Died:

Inscription:

Photo:

Source:

Hill Davie 1871 1959     Source: WVCPA research and 'Mason County, W.Va. Cemetery Inscriptions', Vol. III, pgs. 14-15 (Machir & Burdette)
Hill Laura 1869 1957     Source: WVCPA research and 'Mason County, W.Va. Cemetery Inscriptions', Vol. III, pgs. 14-15 (Machir & Burdette)
Hill Maria Stephens 15 February 1831 17 June 1904     Source: WVCPA research and 'Mason County, W.Va. Cemetery Inscriptions', Vol. III, pgs. 14-15 (Machir & Burdette)
Hill Rankin J. 7 May 1855 2 November 1935     Source: WVCPA research and 'Mason County, W.Va. Cemetery Inscriptions', Vol. III, pgs. 14-15 (Machir & Burdette)
Hill Sen. Byrd 7 January 1862 7 November 1906     Source: WVCPA research and 'Mason County, W.Va. Cemetery Inscriptions', Vol. III, pgs. 14-15 (Machir & Burdette)
Hill Oma 1874 1950     Source: WVCPA research and 'Mason County, W.Va. Cemetery Inscriptions', Vol. III, pgs. 14-15 (Machir & Burdette)

 

Comments: Dates or names in Red are not inscribed on the tombstone and have either been calculated based on death date or are as a result of research on the individual.

Thanks to the generous research and photography of WVCPA contributor, Tracy Cain, we have the photos above to present to you. When he visited the cemetery last in June 2004, there was only one marker visible, that of Maria Stephens Hill.  

This cemetery was last read by Mrs. Lannes Williamson, (who lives on the farm where this cemetery is located, of the Williamson family that owns the Pallet Co.) in August 1970. 

Any updates and photos are most welcome.  Contact us at if you can provide either.

The photos below, in order left to right, top to bottom, and the directions from Tracy Cain printed with them will help you find your way to the Rankin Hill Cemetery. Click on the photos below to view full size.

Follow the yellow arrow for the path to the cemetery

<< View of the Lannes Williamson Pallet Co. - the cemetery is
      located on the hill directly behind the mill (see the yellow
      target in the photo)

 

Follow the yellow arrow for the path to the cemetery

 Behind the mill building you will see a rock cliff -     
follow the hillside up to the left >>

 

Follow the yellow arrow for the path to the cemetery

<< From there, continue up the flank of the hill, up and towards
      the right...

 

Follow the yellow arrow for the path to the cemetery


As you approach the crest of the hill, you will see an opening   
in the fence through which you can make your way to   
 the cemetery itself.  In June 2004, Tracy found Maria's   
 tombstone in a clump of trees and brush in the middle of a   
 small clearing, and he assumes the rest of the markers must   
 be there as well, though totally covered in underbrush and/   
or sod after years of neglect >>

 

The Lakey Hill farmhouse - photo taken ca. 1960
(photo copyright
Rod Brand)

The black and white photos on the left and right here are of the Linzy Hill farmhouse, once located nearby the Rankin Hill, and particularly the Jesse Hill, cemeteries.  Linzy (or Lindsey, as some researchers spell it) was a descendant of Jesse and Rankin Hill. The photographer, Rod Brand (descendant of Linzy Hill), and his wife Irene have their home located where this farmhouse once stood.  These photos were taken nearly 50 years ago when the farmhouse was still standing.  
     Here are excerpts of Rod's commentary on the house in a letter to Tracy Cain:

"...We don't really know a lot about it, except that it was the home of Linzy Hill.  I suspect it was built around 1850; possibly into the sixties.  It was of post & beam construction.  Huge hand hewn timbers that were mortised and pinned at the corners, with braces... all of oak wood, of course.  It may very well have been built by Jesse Hill, but we do not know; but from its' style etc., and the dates he lived on this farm, it was probably "the old Hill homeplace" to his children.
     It stood on hand hewn sandstone blocks; these were cut by our contractor, into random pieces, and used to face the big fireplace we had built into the study of our new home, (some call it a library) on the site of the old Hill house, in 1967.
     The old Hill house had four huge rooms and two large hallways, with an open stairway, in the two-story part.  A one story part to the back contained the kitchen, and added to it was a large room, probably used as a pantry and general storage room.
     We purchased about three-fourths of an acre from Lannes Williamson, about 1980; a piece of the old Hill property he had bought from the Hill family, probably about 1950 or before.  I've forgotten that date, even though I did look into the records and had it, when I traced our deed back to about 1810 or so, to "the heirs of George Washington", at the Mason County Clerk's office, in Point Pleasant.  Of course, Mr. Washington did not have a deed, but a Grant from King George III, of England, for Mr. Washington's service in the French and Indian War.  This large tract of more than 10,000 acres was along the south side of the Kanawha River from Point Pleasant, towards Charleston."

Rod Brand, in letter to Tracy Cain, in 2004

The Lakey Hill farmhouse - photo taken ca. 1960
(photo copyright
Rod Brand)

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 Updated: 07 September 2012