In July of 1870, a Board of Trustees were formed to oversee a cemetery located inside the Hallettsville city limits. The trustees were T.A. Hester, Lee Green, Louis Turner and Volney Ellis.
On July 23, 1870, Mary Jane Ballard, the wife of Collatinus Ballard and daughter of Margaret Hallett, deeded two acres of land to the Trustees for $20.00 to be used as a cemetery for the white inhabitants of the Town of Hallettsville and vicinity. Stated in the deed the survey began at the NE corner of a former survey for a grave yard of 1 acre. Note: see Trustees report of January 21, 1875 in this article.
On May 19, 1873, Mary Jane Ballard deed one acre of land to L.S. Pepper, Jos. August and Isaac Samusch for a Hebrew (Jewish) cemetery. This one acre adjoined the two acres previously deeded and known as the Hallettsville grave yard.
In an October 1874 letter to the editor of the Hallettsville Herald and Planter the writer spoke at length about the deplorable condition of the Hallettsville grave yard.
“The deplorable condition of the Hallettsville grave yard has for a long time excited my sympathy in behalf of the dead reposing there. There is not a vestige of fence or enclosure of any kind around the main burial ground to protect the decomposing bodies of some of our nearest and dearest friends from the horses and cattle, and what is worse from being rooted up by the pestiferous swine that so prolifically infest this town.”
The writer goes on to implore the citizen of Hallettsville, with a direct appeal to the ladies of Hallettsville, to raise sufficient funds to place a pine plank fence around the entire ground and have the same wall painted.
The writer ends his letter with “Further neglect would be a burning disgrace to our town and its people.”
Schematic of the Hallettsville Graveyard in 1923. See Downloads, below, for a larger image.