The first settler in this part of Eastland County, James Madison Ellison (1840-1923) built a cabin near Ellison Springs in 1858. He married Eliza Jane McGough and was a stock farmer in this area for half a century. As a young man, he was permanently disabled while serving in a militia company defending frontier homes against hostile Indian attack. Ellison established this cemetery after the death of his mother Nancy Baird Ellison (1818-1876), a native of Georgia and midwife for her pioneer neighbors. Although intended for family burials, the plot has always been available to friends and others in need. An unknown child, from a family who camped on Ellison's land as they moved west, died of pneumonia and was buried here. Ellison's son John, his younger son J.T., killed in a fight over a horse, and his daughter Lanie are among the 12 family members interred here. The cemetery contains 26 graves in all. In 1901 the land was legally deeded for use as a graveyard. In 1918 petroleum was discovered in the county, and Ellison leased his land for oil exploration. He moved to the Rio Grande Valley with a granddaughter and her family, and bought a citrus farm. He died there in 1923 and now lies buried in the family cemetery. (1977)
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