Brownstown Township / Jackson County / Indiana

Board Minutes and Schedule, Project Updates, and News Items


Township Cemeteries

The township contains these cemeteries: Burrell, Durland, First German Presbyterian, Miller, Old Town, Robertson, Saint Paul’s, Smallwood, Wayman, Weathers and Woodmansee.

Cemetery Tree Clearing Project

The First German Presbyterian Cemetery restoration project was initiated June 1, 2017, after the Jackson County Highway Department constructed an access lane on the easement to the cemetery property located north of county road 400 South at about 75 East in Brownstown Township. This access lane allowed the Township Board and Trustee to begin a tree clearing project for this historic site recently donated to the township by retired Brownstown High School Teacher, Lynn Hinnefeld.

Brownstown Township entered into independent contracting agreements with Brownstown High School students Jordan Statzer and Dylan Cockerham to clear the small trees and brush from the cemetery property.  Teacher Blake Hackman and Township Board Chairman Jack Gillespie provided supervision for the tree clearing work.  On June 14, 2017 Gillespie brought Mr. Hinnefeld to the site to get pictures of the project progress and meet with Hackman and the boys to discuss some of the family history of the cemetery.

As Jackson County departments have compleated cooperative projects of surveying the cemetery property and constructing an access lane to the site, the Township Board Chairman sent a gratitude email to the County Commissioners, Council, Auditor, Highway Department and Surveyor.  This was another local government cooperative project to restore a truly historic Brownstown Township site.




RESTORATION PROJECT 2015:  Two weeks by “Graveyard Groomer”


First German Presbyterian Cemetery


This review of property ownership was researched and used to properly name a cemetery plot to be donated to Brownstown Township by Lynn W. Hinnefeld .  This cemetery plot on the Hinnefeld farm near Wegan was named Lopp/Presbyterian Church Cemetery in the Jackson County Cemetery Book compiled by the Jackson County Genealogical Society in 1993.  According to county records the cemetery property was first owned by the First German Old School Presbyterian Church in 1863.

According to a document in the Deed Record/W/1863-1864/Part 1/Jackson County, Pages 67-68, on the 11th day of June, 1863 Barnard and Henriette Lorman, for the sum of seventy dollars, conveyed and warranted to the Trustees of the Jackson County first German Old School Presbyterian Church property to be used for church and graveyard purposes.  That property was located in Section 36,Township 5, Range 4 of Jackson County, Indiana and described as:  “Part of the Southwest corner _______of the Southeast quarter __of the South East quarter of Section Thirty six (36) Township five (5) Range four (4) Each containing Two acres (2)”.

According to a document in the Deed Record/11/1875-1876/Part 2/Jackson County, Pages 348 & 349, on the fourth day of April, 1876 Frances Kopf, widow of Francis X Kopf, Deceased, for the sum of Forty (40) dollars, conveyed and warranted to the trustees of the 1st German Old School Presbyterian  Church of Jackson County about one acre described as 10 rods east of the 2 acres deeded to the church on June 11, 1863 by Barney Lorman and wife as described above.

Deeds provided by Lynn Hinnefeld in 2016 indicated both church properties above were deeded to Harmon Hinnefeld in 1894 and 1898.  Those deeds were recorded in Deed Record/1898/42/Pages 381 & 389.  Since many tombstones record deaths before 1876, the cemetery was consider a part of the original 1863 Lorman property and not a part of the 1876 Kopf property. There were no records to support the “Lopp” name used in the 1993 Jackson County Cemetery Book.  That was considered a possible typing error for Kopf since F. X. Kopf is buried in the cemetery and Frances Kopf, widow of Francis X Kopf were both named in the 1876 deed.   Considering the information above, the name of the cemetery when recorded in 2017 will be known as First German Presbyterian Cemetery.

On October 19, 2016 Lynn W. Hinnefeld signed an agreement with Jack Gillespie, Chairman, Brownstown Township Board to allow the township to survey this abandoned cemetery in order to prepare a deed for this cemetery plot to be donated to Brownstown Township, Jackson County, Indiana.

Written December 5, 2016

by Jack R. Gillespie, Chairman, Brownstown Township Board

Approved by:  Lynn W. Hinnefeld  ____________________________________________

Old Brownstown Cemetery Sidewalk Project 2014

This provided a connection between the County Park Multi-use Path and the County History Center’s new sidewalk. The Brownstown Town Board paid for the History Center’s new sidewalk. These cooperative Township, Town, and County projects made it possible to walk or bike safely from the Jackson County Courthouse Square to the Jackson County Fairgrounds.

B'town Path 002 sidewalk 001 DSCN3040sidewalk 004DSCN3034sidewalk 003

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