Sand Hill Cemetery
(Click Here to go to All Headstone Pictures Online)
Click on the Grave Location button to go to a map of the cemetery and headstone layout list.
Sand Hill Cemetery is located south of Decatur.
From Hwy 287 turn
to the west on CR 4227. Go about a mile and there is a large sign on the right to the
cemetery. Sand Hill is then less than a mile on CR 4226.
The sign on the gate says
to contact Coker Funeral Home at 627-5959 for information.
We took pictures of all the 258 headstones that we found in May of 2000.
The cemetery is almost square in shape and has wandering rows. To shorten the length of the rows we divided it in half, east and west, using a large oak tree in the center as a dividing marker. The picture to the right shows the tree as seen from the entry gate (also see the Layout Map link above).
At the road near the entry gate is an Historical Marker about the cemetery and community of Sand Hill. There is another Historical Marker at the grave of Ira Long.
The text for both Historical Markers follows:
Sand Hill Community
A center of pioneer culture in North Texas, drawing crowds to meet here at good spring of water issuing from beneath hill that gave community its name.
First church (Methodist) in territory to become Wise County was organized in home of Jim Brooks in 1854. Organizers, led by the Rev. W.H.H. ("Buck") Bradford, included Brooks, Charles Browder, Lemuel Cartwright, Thomas Cogdell, Benjamin Monroe, the Rev. John Roe, and Dr. Standifer. Cartwright soon built a new home and gave his original house to the church. The structure was affectionately called "Old Swayback", because its long ridgepole sagged under weight of the roof. All faiths held services there. It probably was site of first school (taught in 1855 by Eli Hoag) within the boundaries of Wise County, which was created in 1856.
Countys first Masonic Lodge was also organized in Home of Jim Brooks. Its first grist mill and other pioneer improvements were situated in the community. Last church on the site was burned on April 3, 1970.
Sand Hill campground for years was site of social and religious gatherings.
Cemetery has graves of settlers and of veterans of Civil War and other conflicts. Capt. Ira Long, a celebrated Texas Ranger, is buried here.Texas Ranger Captain Ira Long
Dedicated and courageous, born in Indiana; reared in Missouri, wounded twice in Confederate service during the Civil War.
On reorganization of Texas Rangers, 1874, was commissioned first lieutenant; promoted 1875 to Captain, Company A, official escort of Major John B. Jones, commander of Ranger Force. Did outstanding duty against Indians and outlaws, and in quieting such feuds as Mason County War. Served for six years.
Some extra information on the Thompson family, (in parenthesis) was sent in by Janet & Clyde McMurray.