BRIEF HISTORY OF RICHARDSON HILL
by Vivian Cross
(Secretary/treasurer of Richardson Hill Cemetery)
Contributed by Phyllis Collins.
Owing to the increased interest being manifested in the
and cemetery on the crest of RICHARDSON HILL, located two
one-half miles south of Dahlgren, Illinois, and having heard
conjectures as to just how it came about, I offer the
Many years ago I wrote down the names and dates of the
grave markers which are now almost impossible to read.
Here is the story - MARY ANNE MCCLURE RICHARDSON, daughter
son of AARON HARVEY RICHARDSON 1st, lived at the foot
the "HILL" on the north side.
Their home faced the old
ROAD" which ran between McLeansboro and Mt. Vernon.
year 1858, MARY ANNE McCLURE RICHARDSON died, leaving a
three-week old son, AUSTIN HARVEY RICHARDSON.
at the crest of the "HILL."
This was the first grave in
This baby boy was taken into the home of the grandparents,
HARVEY RICHARDSON, 1st. After
a time the grandparents both
and were buried on the "HILL" near their daughter-in-law.
The boy was taken in the home of his aunt, MRS. HARRIET
COKER, and her husband, CAPTAIN JOE COKER, where he
The late VOL RICHARDSON of Mt. Vernon, Illinois, was the
of AUSTIN HARVEY RICHARDSON, who grew up in the home of
The Cokers lived down the "ANGLING ROAD" to the east
miles on "COKER HILL."
The young widower, AARON HARVEY RICHARDSON II, enlisted in
Union Army, Co. G 40th Illinois Infantry, dying in an army
just outside of Scottsboro, Alabama, of typhoid fever.
body was brought back and buried near his wife on RICHARDSON
His father, AARON HARVEY RICHARDSON 1st, was still living
that time, and he gave this part of the 'HILL' to be used as a
This is the north side of the present large cemetery.
joining land to
JOHN P. STELLE purchased and gave to the cemetery a
of land of some two acres to the north.
This was about
year 1914. Otber small
parcels of Land were probably added
the period prior to 1914.
In 1863, VIRGINIA CRAIG, a
relative of the Richardson
was buried near the Richardson graves.
In 1864, a little four-year-old girl, daughter of CAPTAIN JOE
and HARRIET RICHARDSON COKER, was buried near the other
These six graves were the beginning of the cemetery.
In 1887, the WHITE
SCHOOL HOUSE, located about
of Dahlgren, which had not been in use after the
of a new school in Dahlgren, was donated to RICHARDSON
by JOHN P. STELLE on whose land it was located.
was taken apart and moved to the cemetery and rebuilt to
as a chapel.
The men who gave their time and effort in this rather large
were as follows:
FRANCIS M. COOK
CHESTER JUDD - Chief Carpenter
EDWIN HARDY LEARNED
JOHN P. STELLE
VINCENT MCCOWAN WINKLER
Sometime later, JOHN P. STELLE had erected the bell tower
ladies of the community organized and conducted a number
ice cream socials to raise money for the purchase and
of a bell.
Mr. Stelle took a great interest in the chapel and cemetery,
he with Mrs. Stelle and a number of other family members are
at the "HILL."
The following was added at the end of the article and was
faint, almost to the point of being unreadable.
This article was written by Elsie Stelle Winkler several
before her death. –- illegible -- by Mr. and
Vol Richardson of Mt. Vernon, Illinois.
the grandson of the three week old boy left motherless
the death of the first person buried at Richardson Hill.
Winkler probably wrote this article about 1950.)
Elsie Stelle Winkler was born 2 January 1879 and died 25 November 1961.
was the wife of A. Roscoe Winkler and the daughter of John Patterson
and Eliza Evaline Coker.