Rose Hill Cemetery is a beautiful and well-kept historic burial ground on the edge of Austell’s downtown. The cemetery is nearly exactly as old as Austell itself. Like many cemeteries in Cobb County, Rose Hill is the final resting place of a number of people whose family names are also the names of roads in the county. At Rose Hill, those family names include Barnes, Maner, Dunn, Glore, Causey, Medlock, Humphries, and Maxham.
One thing that makes the cemetery both interesting and beautiful is the contrast between the serene hilly memorial park and its surroundings. Highway 78 is visible in one direction and moderately dense neighborhood housing borders it on the other three sides. Another thing that makes the cemetery exceptional is the variety of headstones and monuments. There are rough stone markers from the late nineteenth century, and granite and marble headstones and statuary from every decade since then. Some are simple, and some are elaborate.
Brief History of Rose Hill Cemetery
According to a description of the cemetery on the Find-a-Grave website, Rose Hill began as a private venture by Dilmus Lyle and Newton A Morse in 1885, the same year Austell was incorporated. Morse was a founder of the Austell Banking Company. In 1891 the cemetery was sold to the City of Austell and became the city cemetery. In the 1960s the individual plots were deeded to the families by the county, and Austell no longer owned the grounds.
However, the city continued to keep the cemetery maintained, even though it had no legal responsibility to do so. An exchange during a city council meeting in June of 2016 gives an enlightening and entertaining narrative of the current status of the cemetery.
Watch the Slideshow
Be sure to check out the slideshow below. For directions to the cemetery, there is an interactive Google map below the slideshow.