Rose Hill Baptist Church Cemetery

Association: Rose Hill Baptist Church
No. of Markers: 215 (View)
No. of Individuals: 32 (View)
Location: Milton, Albemarle Co.

The Rose Hill Church and Cemetery (pictured below) are located adjacent to Thomas Jefferson's Monticello property and just south of the town of Milton, once the site of a large tobacco warehouse and an important river crossing. In the late 19th Century, the Rose Hill neighborhood was located many miles from the nearest church. As a result, local residents purchased land in May 1892 to build a church and a community. Later, a school was built next to the church and remains standing today as an historic African-American school.

The Rose Hill Church Cemetery contains over 200 burials and has been in use since the early 20th Century. Land deeds indicate that the land associated with the Rose Hill Church was purchased in 1893 (for 1 39/160 acre). The Rose Hill Congregation began meeting two years earlier, in 1891. The land for the Rose Hill Cemetery was deeded to the Trustees of the Church in 1902. Perhaps not coincidentally, the deed is for "1 acre," reminiscient of a common euphemism used to describe burial grounds: "God's Little Acre." The Cemetery was in use between c. 1917 and 1971.

The cemetery contained at least 214 gravestones and many more individuals buried under unmarked (or unpreserve) graves. Approximately 48% of the stones contained legible inscriptions, the rest were carved fieldstones or metal markers (provided by funeral homes) that lacked legible inscriptions.