Saturday, October 13, 2012

History of Spring Hill Cemetery

 by Debie Oeser Cox

Thomas B. Craighead arrived in the Cumberland Settlements in 1785, being called to minister to the mostly Presbyterian population and to act as headmaster and teacher for a planned academy.  The subscribing congregation presented Craighead with a 640 acre tract of land known as “the spring hill tract,” in advance payment for his expected services to the community.  A building was erected on his property for use as a house of worship and the school, named Davidson Academy.  Although records do not exist, the earliest burials in the churchyard probably occurred in the late 1780s.  Rev. Craighead deeded, in 1815, the meeting house and ten acres to the Spring Hill neighborhood to be  used as a place of worship, a school and burying ground.  In 1888, Madison Stratton, David Stratton, W. C. Dribble, James E. Sloan and R. E. Love were granted a charter of incorporation for the Craighead Spring Hill Cemetery Association.  In 1934, Mary Stratton Morris was granted an amendment to the charter of incorporation, changing the name of the corporation to the Spring Hill Cemetery Company.  Mrs. Morris, a widow, later married Dr. James T. Hayes.  She was president of the Spring Hill Cemetery Company from 1934 until her death in 1974.  The cemetery business remained in the Hayes family hands into the 1990s.  Spring Hill Cemetery continues in operation today.

Records for the Spring Hill Cemetery from 1901 to 1985 are on microfilm at the Metro Archives and Tennessee State Library and Archives.  There are no interment records prior to 1901.  

This article was also published, with permission of the author Debie Oeser Cox, on the Davidson County Cemetery Survey website;

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