Hull Community gathers to honor veterans buried in Pleasant Hill Cemetery

May 23, 2019

HARRISBURG — On Memorial Day, the Hull community will once again gather to remember the veterans who once lived there and to learn about the history of the area. Hull, which lies on the Scotts Bluff-Banner County line is home to the Pleasant Hill Cemetery where the community has observed Memorial Day since May 30, 1889.

Hull was originally known as Pleasant Valley and was a rural settlement which was known as a civil war community due to the number of veterans listed on the Federal Veterans Census in 1890. The cemetery is all that is left of Hull, but area residents return each year to remember the veterans who once lived here and to enjoy a picnic afterward where they reminisce and listed to a different history program each year.

Everyone is welcome to attend the day’s event, regardless of whether or not they are former Hull residents.

This year’s speaker is Major General H. Michael Edwards, adjutant general for Colorado. He is responsible for the command administration of over 5,000 Colorado Army and Air National Guard members and serves as the executive director of the Department of Military and Veterans Affairs and is a member of the Governor’s cabinet. He is responsible for supporting the missions of the Civil Air Patrol’s Colorado Wing, consisting of over 2,500 volunteers. His speech is expected to focus on patriotism.

Children will place wildflowers on the veterans’ graves at Pleasant Hill Cemetery, a tradition that has been carried out for more than a century, beginning with the Grand Army of the Republic. The GAR, which was formed in Hull on Aug. 22, 1892, decided in 1895 to honor their comrades lying in unknown graves. A monument was unaffordable so a four-foot mound of sod was created and decorated with wild flowers in honor of the unknown soldiers.

“They started it and their descendants have kept it going ever since,” said Jack Preston, organizer.

An Old Settlers Program will be presented at 1 p.m. in the Lerwick building, a 1/2 mile north of the cemetery. Everyone is encouraged to bring community and family stories and photos to share. Preston will be discussing a quilt his mother made throughout the course of her life and is hoping attendees will be able to help him identify the people in the few remaining blocks.

Preston’s mother began making a friendship quilt in 1935. The quilt is made of a series of blocks with individuals’ names written on them.

“She would get them to sign the block and then embroider their signature,” he said. “She went to high school in Mitchell where she lived with her grandparents, and had her friends sign it.”

When Preston’s mother married and moved to Hull, she kept making blocks for the quilt. When she retired and moved to Gering, she added more names. She completed the quilt in the 1980s.

“There are three groups of people in the quilt,” he said. “The people in town (Gering) are grouped together.”

Preston has determined who nearly all the people are on the quilt, but is hoping to learn who they all are. Anyone who cannot make it to the day’s events can visit the Hull Community’s website where Preston has uploaded pictures of each block on the quilt.

The Pleasant Hill Cemetery observances, Hull community reunion and picnic will be held on Monday, May 27. Memorial Services will be held at 11 a.m., followed by a carry-in dinner. Attendees are asked to bring a covered dish to share along with chairs, utensils and table service for your family. Water will be provided.

For more information, call 308-247-2888, email hull@hullcommunity.org or visit http:www.hullcommunity.org.

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