Family Histories

Family Histories for the Rose and Kirkpatrick Families

Monday, November 3, 2014

Tombstone Tuesday - Stanfield Cemetery

Last week I was finally able to make the trip from Atlanta to Campbell County, Tennessee, where much of my maternal grandfather's family came from.  Campbell is in upper east Tennessee, just a few miles from the Kentucky state line in the Cumberland Mountains.  We drove over a mountain road near Lafollette, Tennessee and wound our way around to Elk Valley.  I was unprepared for how truly beautiful this place is.  A lovely, green valley surrounded by mountains (luckily, at the height of the fall colors).  A perfect time to walk the (many) cemeteries on our list and find those family members I've been researching and reading about for so long.  I can't be the only one who begins to feel like I really know these people, can I? 

I found my third great-grandfather, Sampson Stanfill (the spelling of the family seems to have changed mid-1800s) beside my third great-grandmother, Rhoda Ellison, in what was clearly the oldest part of the cemetery.  Sampson  moved to Knox, Kentucky (now Whitley)  from Anson, North Carolina with his family before 1810.  He met Rhoda, whose family had moved from Virginia,  and they married in 1822 and became the parents of ten children; my great-great grandfather, Milton, was their eldest child.  Sampson worked as a surveyor and a farmer in the area while raising his family.  His son James donated the land the cemetery is on (as well as the Stanfield United Baptist Church); his son Lewis's wife, Ellen Faulkner, was the first person buried in the cemetery in 1868. 

Sampson is buried between his two wives; Rhoda Ellison and his second wife, Celia Carroll.  

Sampson Lafayette Stanfill 1800 -  1887

Rhoda (Rhody) Rachel Ellison Stanfill 1806 - 1867
Celia Carroll Stanfill 1806 - 1879

Many of the stones are now unreadable and weathered down to just small bits sticking up from the ground.  No doubt there are more of my ancestors in these plots, but I don't think we'll ever be able to know who they are.

Ellen Faulkner Stanfill 1841 - 1868

Lewis  J. Stanfill 1832 - 1897

Lewis J. Stanfill
James Stanfill 1828 - 1903
 Some time in the late 1800's, my great-great grandfather's widow and most of their children moved to Madison, Arkansas.  I have to wonder what would take them away from the beauty of this place where they had made their home.  To do:  look up whether or not they were giving away land in Arkansas!

I'm already planning a return trip in the spring; the four days we had just wasn't enough to go to every cemetery and repository I need to visit.  Can't wait to go back!

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