{The following information was compiled by Tammy Hosenfeld and was read by Flora L. VerStraten during a graveside service held at the Rehoboth Cemetery in 2008.}
In 1829 there was a division within the Methodist Episcopal Church, which resulted in the organization of the Methodist Protestant Church.

Rehoboth was the first Methodist Church in the Adena, [Smithfield Twp.] area. The Rehoboth Methodist Protestant Church congregation was formed from those who dissented from Holmes Methodist Episcopal Church, which stood one mile from this location into the woods, of which is located today the Holmes Methodist Cemetery, established in 1810. It is probable that Rehoboth was named after the third well that Isaac dug found in Genesis 26:22. The first two wells resulted in quarreling but the third well no one quarreled over and so he named it Rehoboth. {Hebrew meaning, ‘broad places’), saying, “Now the LORD has given us room and we will flourish in the land.”

Here stood the Protestant Church that served those who lived in Smithfield Township encompassing Adena, Harrisville, York, and Smithfield and other small hamlets. Adjacent from the cemetery, across the land, stood the Rehoboth School, the first Adena area one-room school house. Rehoboth Church was used until about 1880. Church records are scant but we do know that the Rehoboth congregation, along with the Presbyterians built a church in York and named it the York Union Church. Rehoboth Cemetery is also known as Mt. Rehoboth and York Union Church Cemetery.

Rehoboth Cemetery holds many ‘unmarked’ graves of loved ones. It was used by the Health Department as an indigent burial location. Much of the front of the bare hillside that borders the pasture holds ‘unmarked’ graves. One that has touched our hearts is that of a little six year old girl who died in a house fire, trying to save her cat and toys. Her stone sits in the pauper section, down by the fence. It is just a clump of cement with child’s marbles in it and a broken off stone in it with no inscription. The chapter has located her family. They are now in the process of getting little Kathryn Ann a stone with her name on it. [Update as of fall 2008: Kathryn’s half-sister was Mildred. Mildred’s son, Joseph Kropka and daughter, Judi Stevenson purchased the grave [pictured above] for Kathryn Ann. Tammy Hosenfeld gave them information about Kathryn. They didn’t know about her, or her death, or the condition of her grave.]

Above: Photo taken by Tammy Hosenfeld, November of 2008. Kathryn’s new headstone, with an angel & one yellow flower place in her remembrance. At the foot of her grave, if you look carefully, you can see the cement with the marbles carefully placed in it, near the base. 

REHOBOTH CEMETERY continued: The Jefferson County Genealogy Chapter of the Ohio Genealogical Society has been working hard to restore and record Rehoboth Cemetery along with all the pioneer cemeteries in the county. Rehoboth was vandalized in the early 1980’s. Many big stones were pulled from their bases and stone were broken and scattered throughout the perimeter of the cemetery. More stones were down than were left upright. As you can see Rehoboth now stands proud as a pioneer cemetery of which lies our freedom fighters, our pioneers, those forged the land, and those who educated. Many sunken stones forgotten by time have been recovered.

[Esther McCoy, from the Herald Star Newspaper, wrote an article about the cemetery and the child, Kathryn Ann. Kathryn’s brother read the article in the newspaper and contacted Tammy. Tammy believes the new tombstone placement has brought honor to a little girl named, Kathryn and her final resting place.]

Military markers were lying in a pile on a stone due to the vandalism. The Steubenville Chapter is now working to locate who they belong to.

The photo above was taken by Tammy and Terry Hosenfeld. Patriot bronze markers L to R: Joseph Chambers (2008), Jacob Clark (2008), and Thomas Rouse (2007).

Veterans laid to rest in Rehoboth Cemetery who have been verified are:

  • William Harry Betton - Civil War, wounded and died at the age of 23
  • Thomas Price – Civil War Veteran
  • Thomas Belknap – Civil War Veteran, wounded in the Battle of Wilderness
  • Col. Lewis Sutherland, Civil War
  • Col. Lewis Sutherland father, Vachel, War of 1812

    Among the unmarked but verified veterans are:
  • Joseph Minzoni – unmarked,WWI
  • Charles Edward Melching, Sr., unmarked, WWII

NOTE: The local SAR, Ebenezer Chapter, installed three bronze markers for the following Patriots from the Revolutionary War. Graveside services were held in honor of:

  • Joseph Chambers (2008)
  • Jacob Clark (2008)
  • Thomas Rouse (2007)

Veteran’s buried in Holmes Cemetery [list is currently under revision]:

  • Hastings, John W.  – D 1896, Co. B., 53nd Reg. O.V.I., Civil War
  • Hastings, George W. – D 1864, age 21, Civil War
  • Hastings, Stephen B. – D 1864, age 31, Civil War
  • Hall, Alvin C. Co. B, 1st WVa. I, Civil War
  • Henry, Isaac P. – D 1928, Civil War