As you walk through
this tour, notice the many hand-made concrete markers
created by Lawyer Patterson to provide affordable
markers to everyone. They are found in African-American
cemeteries across Matagorda County.
Mr. Patterson is buried in
Eastview Cemetery historical marker
– on entrance wall
Thelma Brown Smith (1926-2003)
taught school 38 years with most of those at Hilliard High School
and McAllister Jr. High. She was an expert on Matagorda County’s
African-American history and in the early 1900s, recorded all of the
burials at Eastview Cemetery. Her husband, Ret. Master Sergeant
Lincoln H. Smith (1928-2007), a
Korean War veteran, is buried beside her.
CPL George C. Woods, Jr.
(1926-1951) was a Tribune delivery boy before joining the US Army.
He was accidentally shot by a fellow soldier while serving in Korea.
His mother, Mrs. Pearl Cullier Woods (1899-1978), is buried
James White, Jr. (1923-2001) was born in Pledger and
attended Prairie View A&M University. His professional career, which
spanned 39 years, included principal of A. G. Hilliard High School
and asst. principal of BCHS.
Rosa Lee Allen Brown
(1914-2001) was the wife of
(1873-1958). She was an educator and retired from Bay City ISD after
35 years of teaching.
6. PFC Joseph R.
Hilliard (1939-1965) graduated from Hilliard High
School and Prairie View A&M before enlisting in the US Army. He was
serving in the First Cavalry Division when he was killed in action
in the Ia Drang Valley in Vietnam. His Gold Star parents,
Mae Warren Hilliard (1916-2001) and
Joseph B. Hilliard
(1915-1995) are buried near their son.
Rev. Rudolph Martin, Sr.
(1935-1992) was from a family of pastors. He was an educator in
BCISD and was the principal of Cherry Elementary at his death. He
was the pastor of Pilgrim Rest Baptist Church in Markham.
Melissa Lindsey Wilkins Amey
Amey (1921-1999) in 1954 and they moved to Bay City.
She taught all levels from Head Start to 12th grade. Mr.
Amey was a mail carrier for the USPS.
Frank Henderson (1912-1994) was
the first African-American city councilman in Bay City being elected
in 1976. He was a longtime employee of Birkner Lumber Co. He was
buried beside his wife,
Bessie Brown Henderson (1911-1987). Their daughter,
Henderson, also served on
the City Council of Bay City.
Young (1912-2001) served in the military after his
college graduation. He first taught at A. G. Hilliard High School
and had the honor of becoming the first principal of Linnie Roberts
Elementary. He is buried beside his wife,
Boone Young (1915-1998).
Wellington Armelin (1905-1972)
was the pastry chef at the Baytex Hotel in the 1940sand later sold
Continental Insurance. His wife,
Fannie Boone Armelin (1911-1994), worked in private
homes and later was a nurse’s aide at Matagorda General Hospital.
Andrew Buford Witherspoon
(1914-1995) received his pharmaceutical degree and later served in
WWII. He was a member of Tyree Chapel AME Church and was organist
for 30 years. He owned and operated the South End Drug Store and
active in civic involvement. His wife,
Lottie Boone Witherspoon
(1919-2001), a longtime Bay City teacher, is buried beside
Joe Houston (1878-1971) was the first African-American
to open a drug store and movie theater. He was also the first
African-American in Bay City to have a car. He is buried beside his
Ollie Roy Houston (1894-1969).
Hilda Bouldin Francis
(1913-1992) was a teacher in the Bay City schools for 40 years. She
taught at Hilliard High, Linnie Roberts and Pierce Elementary. She
Romelus Francis (1910-2001) in
1938 and he is buried beside her. He was a WWII veteran and a cook
at Johnnie’s White Kitchen restaurant.
Linnie McHenry Roberts
(1893-1956) taught 32 years, most of them at Booker T. Washington
and Hilliard High School. Linnie
Roberts Elementary was named in her honor in 1961. She married,
Ikeleys “Mr. Ike” Roberts, and they co-owned and
operated Duncan-Roberts Funeral Home. Mr. Roberts was the first
black mortician in Matagorda County.
Mike Smith, Sr. (1878-1966) was one of the first three
trustees of Eastview Cemetery.
Ben Lewis (1843-1915) has the earliest recorded birth
year at Eastview. He was born in Virginia and likely a slave. He was
a driver for a meat market while he lived in Bay City.
Gifford Leroy Duncan (1893-1943) and his father,
William Duncan (1894-1942) established Duncan Funeral Home , the
first African-American funeral home in Bay City, in 1920. In 1942
Ikeleys Roberts joined the firm and it became Duncan-Roberts.
Mary Duncan (1897-1981), and William’s
wife, Lula Duncan (1868-1951), are buried beside their
19. Asa Grant
“A.G.” Hilliard I (1864-1931) was son of slaves, Bunk
and Mary Hilliard and began teaching at age 19. In 1890 he received
$51.70 a month as a teacher. He married Pearl India Carothers
(1873-1932) and they moved to Bay City where classes were held at
Enterprise Baptist Church. In his honor, the Booker T. Washington
High School was renamed A. G. Hilliard High School.
EASTVIEW in 2013 – The Eastview Cemetery Association has
been working several years to preserve the history of those buried
there. One section at a time, all of the markers were leveled and
placed on new bases.