David Hill, Co. E

My maternal great-grandfather was born about 1843 in Yancey Co., North Carolina. He appears in the 1850 Yancey Co., NC census in the family of Charles Hill, Jr. and wife, Kissiah, listed as David Cooper, age 7, along with Charles and Kissiah's two children, John, age 2 and Mary, age 1. Stories passed down in the family tell of David being adopted by Charles and Kissiah Hill. His parentage is unknown.

When the Civil War broke out, David Hill (as he was known by this time) made his way from Yancey Co., NC to Peach Tree Creek, Kentucky to enroll on 18 November, 1862, in the 39th Kentucky Infantry, Co. E., US Army. Like a lot of others in the North Carolina mountains, he wanted nothing to do with the new Confederate States. His enrollment card on file at the National Archives shows he was a Musician and a Private with Co. E, present on all the muster rolls with the exception of March and April 1863 when he contracted measles and was in the Post Hospital at Ashland, Kentucky.

After his unit mustered out in Louisville, KY in September 1865, David Hill returned home to Yancey Co., NC, and married Eliza Jane Barnett (daughter of Spencer and Mary Barnett) on 11 November, 1865 in Rock Creek (Yancey Co.), NC. They lived in this location until about 1875 when they moved to Tennessee. The 1880 US census finds them listed in the Carter Co., TN enumeration. Living next-door to them were Eliza Jane Barnett Hill's parents, Spencer and Mary Barnett.

From family letters, we know that in 1889 David and Eliza Jane Hill moved to Graham Co., NC, several miles out of Robbinsville, where David worked at the Beldon logging camp and Eliza Jane cooked for the workers. David Hill is listed in the 1890 special census of Union soldiers living in Graham Co., NC.

In his application for a disability pension (citing the effects suffered from the fever and measles contracted while in the military service), David gives his description: height 5' '7"; complexion, fair; hair, dark; eyes, gray. Later, David bought a large acreage at Stump Ford (still in Graham Co.) and farmed there.

Today Santeetlah Lake (one of the TVA lakes) covers the area and most probably the cemetery where David Hill lies buried. He died in Graham Co., NC, on 15 May, 1902, and a short while after his death, Eliza Jane Hill moved to Alcoa (Blount Co.), TN where she died 6 April 1923 and is buried at Liberty Burial Grounds. The couple had 14 children: Charlie, Spence, my grandfather Will (and a twin who died at birth), Sissy, John, George (died young), Dave, Joe, Hattie, Maggie, Mollie, Grant and Cal.

Submitted by Dave Hill's great-grandson, Edward E. Thomas: e2mfthomas@msn.com

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