TRIP: Old Rondo Cemetery, Texarkana, Miller, Arkansas

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As mentioned in my outline post of my trip, my initial stop was to see my 2great-Uncle Jim’s gravesite at Old Rondo cemetery in Rondo, Miller, Arkansas. Uncle Jim, as many of us in the family refer to him, was named for his grandfather, James Buchanan and his great-grandfather, William Buchanan. He also had an great-uncle William, who like his grandfather James, died in the Civil War, and according to Joyce, died of disease (perhaps measles?) The names William and James are strongly inherited in our family. William the patriarch, had a son William, who names one of his sons William. A grandson, William, via his son James, named only William on the first several censuses of his life. Later we would find his name was actually James William. This James William is not the current Uncle Jim we’re talking about. In fact, this James William was later known solely as Bill, and Uncle Jim is his namesake (along with the James and Wms before him). Bill is the brother of my 2ggf, Howard Pinkney, and names one of his sons after his brother Howard: Howard Pink Buchanan. Confused? There’s Tyrena’s husband William and their son Wm, Zana’s Wm (now Bill), patriarch Wm (usually Wm & Malissa). Don’t worry, there won’t be a test later. Wait till we get to the John Franklin’s. Lol

Back to the topic at hand, this cemetery, which is not to be confused with Rondo Memorial Park Cemetery. Now I know there’s pictures on FindAGrave (F.A.G.) but nothing beats actually being present, seeing the surroundings. Experience the city. Besides, I wanted to pay my respects. While I was looking for this site, I also took in the amazing feel of the grounds, beginning with the entry to the cemetery, which was established in 1839. (See Wiki here) This one surprised me. As I entered the gates and saw all the retired military equipment that adorned various prominent spots around the entire site. It is dedicated to the Civil War veterans, however even I know they didn’t had tanks then. LOL So, they are keeping with the military/veteran theme. Keep in mind, it was raining- not as hard as it was just as I left Texas (or would be once I reached my next destination) but raining nonetheless.

The signs to the right of the main entrance. I don’t normally post requests for donations, but this cemetery is truly a treasure and I’ll be sure to drop a few dollars in the bucket to help out.

By the way: rain.

👀👀 If you look REALLLLLLY close, you can see a pair of headlights for an oncoming truck. 👀 👀

I will be honest, when I take photos I am usually very stingy keeping them for my personal records (don’t judge. I was the one spending money to travel, time to find locations, markers etc.) and I will continue to do so for many special pictures, but the ones I’ve taken this trip who don’t belong to my family, I have spent the morning posting to FindAGrave so that people can see the current status of the markers. Many, when compared to the original picture, were in desperate need of cleaning but a couple surprised me. They were in good shape after 15 years (or someone has recently cleaned them). The cemetery is rather large, not huge but large. Once I found (great) Uncle Jim & Aunt Miggie, I tended to stay pretty much in the general vicinity. So these are just a spattering of their neighbors and views. There were several tree photos which I will add to a post of its own.

These 2 stones are the reason for my entire stop! The front is (great) Uncle Jim and Aunt Miggie, the one directly behind is their son, (cousin) Elbert and his wife …wait for it… Miggie. You know I will be going back SOON to clean those headstones. Be sure to look on the Trees of the Cemetery post (when I write it) for a dramatic tree shot with their markers in the front. Also an edited version of this same photo.
McLain’s (center and her husband to the right). Be sure to click on his marker listed below. His is extremely unique.
BA Gilstrap. I just loved this headstone. You can see the love and care that went into making it, and unless I am mistaken, this is most likely a homemade marker. The original F.A.G. pic shows it much cleaner but it’s still in pretty good shape considering he died in 1948. (Headstone years, that’s not even considered
You should see her headstone from a pic in 2010. You NEVER guess what the original color is! NEVER! (And if you guessed white: WRONG!) Her name is Nancy Nix, wife of John Nix. Link is below 👇🏻 in the list!
The flagpole with the marker below in honor of the Confederate dead, with a long faded sign to its right, with a dedication from the UDC (United Daughters of the Confederacy), with the row of 7 markers to each side marking the graves of 5 men per marker, totaling 70 unknown soldiers who died in the Civil War. I did dramatize the clouds which already had a presence of their own.
To the left of the flagpole
To the right of the flagpole.
The fencing to the left of this marker, wanted me to turn this into a B/W photo. To be honest, when I see fencing like this it reminds me of Virginia City, Nevada cemeteries I visited so often when I was a child. Very unique! I just reminded myself this must’ve begun my fascination with headstones.
This is a quick blog but check the video embedded 1/2 way down. Yeah, I thought it was an ad for Gin too-but watch the whole thing! And the pine nuts ARE special! (Psssst usually the sulphur springs they open the cones in). 🎶🎶 Home Means Nevada, Home Means the Hills….🎶🎶😉 Battle Born!
This was the most fascinating to read, how they moved the state archives to Rondo (the city) at a store, so they would not be destroyed by the Union Army. Eventually the records were sent to Washington.
You can see my confusion with a cemetery dedicated to the Civil War dead, to see this machinery. Cannon maybe …. But ….🤪
…. But a tank? 😂

Here you will find a complete list of the markers I took pictures of and posted to Find A Grave. Their Memorial ID will be hyperlinked to their individual Memorial page. The list is alpha by surname, which is in caps for easy reading! Please take a quick moment to click through each one and look at their markers, both originals and mine. Amazing to see what a few years does to these stones, whether marble or rock (of whatever origin).

Lieuceal ALDREDGE (1900-1900, 1 mo) Memorial ID 144705872 See her grandmother below, Martha Anne Robinson NIX. (Lieuceal Aldredge… Lieuceal. Say it out loud. Lucille. This is why as a genealogist, you get proficient in reading names with different spellings and even accents. I often read mine in a southern accent when saying it makes no sense. Southern because both sides of my family are deeply rooted for centuries in the South. I’ve only one side, my maternal ggm from the North-so I’m a sliver Yankee 😂).

Earnest Richard AUTREY (1893-1087) Memorial ID 140584085 and his spouse Blanche A. Sholars AUTREY (1900-1998) Memorial ID 140584073

Lewis EDWARDS (- 1875, was 18y) Memorial ID 67708321 (This is one that was previously standing in 2011, but is now either broken or laying flat on the ground. It’s always hard to see the ones in need of repair. At least if they’re dirty, you can clean them.)

B A GILSTRAP (1880-1948) Memorial ID 125980529 (Confession: this is one of the most unique and original homemade headstones I’ve ever seen! The craftsmanship and love ❤️)

Elgin Carl HANNIBAL (1912-1996) Memorial ID 140519924 and his spouse, Gladys Juanita Aaron HANNIBAL (1917-1998) Memorial ID 140519910

John Burl HEFLIN (1916-1988) Memorial ID 126040688 and his spouse, Faye Lucille McNair HEFLIN (1911-2003) Memorial ID 48318407

Guy Allen LATHROP (1899-1959) Memorial ID 140534635 and his spouse, Lona L. Musselwhite LATHROP (1899-1944) ID 140534647

Silas Edward LILES (1883-1947) Memorial ID 81901078 and his wife Hazel LILES (1888-1980) Memorial ID 81901112

Carl Edward MARTINDALE Jr. (1959-2020) Memorial ID 211796255 (This was another that did not have a prior picture, which surprised me as there was a photo of him and this was a very recent passing. Sadly the picture I took was from the backside of the marker as it was in the forefront of another shot. I will retake it when I go again soon).

HN MCLAIN (1833-1912) Memorial ID 132574459 and his spouse, Josephine MCLAIN (1842-1893) Memorial ID 12106265 (His stone especially is very unique. I’ve not seen another like it).

Father Fred H. NIEHUSS (1851-1929) Memorial ID 140575336 and his 2 Daughters, Julia NEIHUSS (1882-1927) Memorial ID 81894948, and Lena NIEHUSS (1800-1923) Memorial ID 81894977

Elener S. Herring NIX (1844-1900) Memorial ID 5314735

Ersey May Bell NIX (1898-1901, 2 yrs) Memorial ID 133650725

Jasper NIX (1901-1902, 1 mos) Memorial ID 133650735. (Note: this is one of two I randomly took where there was not a previous photo on the memorial. It just spoke to me.)

John Benjamin Clemmons NIX (1835-1926) Memorial ID 5314731 and his spouse, Nancy Ann Akin NIX (1841-1885) Memorial ID 5314732

Martha Anne Robinson NIX (1952-1900) Memorial ID 133650750 (The name is Marthey on the headstone. Also believe this might be the grandmother for Ersey Nix, just above. Also for Lieuceal Aldredge, which I believe to be Lucille, therefore granddaughter).

Sarah A. “Sally” Howard NIX (1800-1863) Memorial ID 5314730 (Must read biography on her! Amazing woman!)

Walter J PLEASANT (1906-1968) Memorial ID 125979524 and his spouse, Anna A. PLEASANT (1904-1990) Memorial ID 125979531

Sally Ward Curtright STUART (1869-1962) Memorial ID 144672023 (Ironically, this is one of the only headstones which actually looked better than the picture previously taken, which was 2015 for this one!)

James Markes WILBURN (1887-1971) Memorial ID 144164440 and his spouse, Fannie L. Schultz WILBURN (1891-1978) Memorial ID 144164477

Clarence Sanford WILEY (1873-1963) Memorial ID 133650374 and his spouse, Cornelia F. “Eunetta” Willingham WILEY (1902-1976) Memorial ID 139057104

By the way, I spent little less than an hour at the cemetery from the gate to back on the road. Yet look at all the amazing people I’ve met along the way. Not to mention the knowledge I’ve gained from it! Well worth it!

Here’s a few additional resources on this Cemtery, including transcriptions and history.

Arkansas Gravestones: Old Rondo Cemetery appears to be a pretty comprehensive listing, in alpha order, of the entire cemetery with photos.

June 2021 Decoration Day local news coverage with a bit of history Similar coverage June 2019

History of the Confederate soldier section of the cemetery which is on the National Register of Historic Places (2004).

Rootsweb page on the Cemtery with some transcriptions under the alphabet hyperlinked section. God I miss Rootsweb.

Stay tuned: Next post will be on my stop in El Dorado, Union, Arkansas…. And the first mega fail for OnStar navigation horror story.

And, in case you started with this post, there are more in this TRIP series. (And more still to come). Here they are so far.

TRIP overview, a first must read. 

Old Rondo Cemetery, Texarkana, AR 

Weatherbee Cemetery, Franklin County, AR

Potts Camp & Bethlehem Church Cemetery, Outside Potts Camp, MS

Guntown, MS

Trees of the cemetery: a combination of sites

Pontotoc County & descendant of John Franklin, son of William and Malissa.

7 thoughts on “TRIP: Old Rondo Cemetery, Texarkana, Miller, Arkansas

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