ISIAH RATCLIFF

Submitted by Herman Ratcliff

We learn from the Biographical and Historical Memoirs of Northwest
Louisiana, History of Louisiana, Webster Parish that Isiah Ratcliff was
a Georgian by birth, and like the majority of native-born risidents of
that country he was thrifty, industrious and public spirited.  He was born
on September 21, 1827 to the union of Joseph and Annie Johnson Ratcliff,
both of whom were South Carolinians, in which State they were reared and
educated. His father was a farmer and mechanic by occupation. He moved
to Georgia at an early age, settled in Gwinette County and aftereward in
Muscogee County, where he resided until 1836, at which time he moved
to Russell County, Alabama. He moved to Walton County, Fla., for five years;
then to Bienville Parish, Louisiana in 1852, and died on October 27, 1857.
While a resident of South Carolina he served as captain of a company of
militia, and after moving to Bienville Parish he held the office of justice of
the peace. At the time of his death he was sixty-four years of age. Isiah
Ratcliff was reared in three states: Georgia, Alabama and Florida, and when
still young he came to Louisiana in 1849 and settled in what is now Webster
Parish within seven miles of Minden. His first two years were spent on a farm.
He then turned his attention to carpentering and building, continuing up to the
war; and also worked in a cotton-gin factory for some three and one-hald
years, having charge of the wood mechanical part of the work for sometime.
In 1862 he became of member of an independent company of calvary (the
Minden Rangers), and served until the close of the war in Capt. Webb's company, which acted as escort Gen. Armstrong Cresby and W. H. Jackson.
Mr. Ratcliff returned home May 18, 1865, and for some time thereafter was
engaged in milling. In 1868 he purchased a farm, which he imporved, and
in 1872 made the purchase of a mill. Later he purchased a farm of 440 acres
to which he moved his mill, building, also a cotton gin thereon. He wasappointed and served nearly ten years as a member of the school board and
in July, 1888, was elected a member of the police jury and served four years.
He is a member of, and takes an active part in, the Farmers' Union, and of his
own local union. He joined the Baptist church in 1847, and has been a member
it since that time, being now a deacon. He is a consistent Christian gentleman,
and a man possessing many starling traits of character. He was married in
Minden, January 12, 1853 to Miss Carolina W. Harrison, a daughter of W. G.
Harrison, her birth occuring in Twiggs County, Ga., although she was reared
in Louisiana. Mr. and Mrs. Ratcliff have ten children:
             Allen H. Ratcliff
             Perry D. Ratcliff
             Anna wife of J. W. Neal
             Elizabeth wife of J. M. Richardson
             Mary F. wife of Wimberly Bakey?of Bienville Parish
             Leary Ratcliff Ratcliff
             Hattie L. Ratcliff
             Joseph N. Ratcliff
             Carrie A. Ratcliff
             Bessie Lee Ratcliff
All the children except two are members of the Baptist church.

                                                              MINDEN CEMETERY

Joseph  T. Ratcliff   (brother to Lery Ratliff ) born 22 Jan. 1874 died 9 Apr. 1848 Section B-1 md.  10 Jun. 1903 to Minnie Estelle Musgrove born14 Jul. 1879 died 26 Apr. 1933 in Minden. Children were Ethel Ann (never md.) Herman Isianh    Myrtis Wade, Lillian Estelle, Joseph Ernest, and Johnny Ardis Ratcliff.

Sarah Wade Ratcliff retired in 1976 after serving over twenty years as a missionary in Central America. She attended God's Bible College In Cincinnati, Oh.  (13 Jun. 1911-1991) She was the daughter: Leary Ratcliff born 19 Nov. 1867 died 4 Sep. 1927 md. 1st. Alice Peabody 02 Dec. 19  md. 2nd. Emma Peabody 22 Dec. 1903

Alice Peabody born 11 Dec. 1875 died 11 Dec. 1902 Both were daughters of Albert and Sarah Jane Peabody.

Jonah W. born 20 Dec. 1894 in Ark. died 17 May 1948 WW1 France. Alice Ratcliff born 2 Dec. 1904 in Minden, La. died 19 Nov. md. 28 Sep. 1929 Minden, La.

Also interred in Section A South with the Ratcliff Family is: Richard Slade  born in Shreveport 25 August 1936 and died 26 August 1936

In the Gardens of Memory I find a double monuments for:Herman I. Ratcliff born 29 Oct. 1905 died 18 Dec. 1968 and Rae M. in row 2, section 1 Garden of the Lord's Supper.

Section A Southeast - (Rough concrete stone with no graves visible; ones here should be shown below).

Albert Peabody 23 Apr 1840      died  05 May  1912

Sarah Jane Peabody 22 Jul 1848 died  28 Oct. 1930

(Known children)

Mary Emma Peabody    09 Dec. 1870 died 26 Sept 1956  md. Leary Ratcliff in 1903

       Nettie Peabody born 08 Aug. 1873 died 28 Aug. 1971 Miss Peabody was once an educator and registrar for Gods Bible School and College in Cinn. Ohio. She was employed for this institution as early as 1911.

Alice Helen Peabody      11 Dec. 1875 died 11 Dec. 1902  md. Leary Ratcliff in 1900

Anna Peabody                25 Nov. 1877 died 09 Dec. 1972 md. William H. Luck ca 1901                             

Cora  Peabody                03 Oct. 1880 died 31 May  1883

See Minden Patriarch's for more information on the land and the other heirs.



                                     RATCLIFF CEMETERY
                            7 Miles West of Minden

Submitted by Herman Ratcliff

From Dixie Inn at US Highway eighty take Louisiana Highway 7 north
2.3 miles, turn west on Old Cotton Valley Road. Drive about . 4miles;
then 2.1 miles on Fuller Road. From this point walk about one 100 feet
north. The graveyard may have a fence around the main cemetery which
is approx. 68 feet by 68 feet according to Wilburn L. Ratcliff and may be
located in a thicket of trees and underbrush.

Isaiah Ratcliff                    21 Sep. 1827          23 Apr. 1896
Caroline Wade Harrison wife of Isaiah Ratcliff
                                           18 Oct. 1837          17 Jun. 1899
Bessie Lee Ratcliff`             28 Jun. 1882          30 Nov. 1912
Joseph Ernest Ratcliff         29 Aug. 1910          23 Jun. 1912
Hubert Allen Ratcliff           12 Feb.  1854          12 Apr. 1913
Laura Perriman Ratcliff  wife of Hubert A. Ratcliff                       
                                                                         01 Apr. 1913
Gibson, Thomas Calhoun     19 Aug. 1850         26 Aug.1884
Gibson, Thomas Calhoun Jr.18 Mar. 1885         30 Aug. 1917
Hinson, Rev. J. F.
Hinson, Margret wife of Rev. J. F. Hinson
                                             19 Jun. 1834         29 Nov. 1908
Musgrove, Lucy Ann              (no dates)
(c/o) Willie Ratcliff)

The following members of a Dixon family were buried in this cemetery according to Myrtis Garrett.

Dixon,  Mother

Dixon, Father

Dixon, Bessie Lee

The following members of a REED family were buried in this cemetery according
to a Mrs. LANNING.

Reed, Don (Father)

Reed, Bell Hadley (Mother)

Reed, Lucendia (Daughter)

There are three Baten graves located about 50 ft. N.W. of the Ratcliff enclosure.

Baten, Edwin H.                     03 Feb. 1948                28 Dec. 1879

Wigley, Haseltine Baten        06 Nov. 1845                 28 Oct. 1879

Baten, Rev. Jas. W.               01 Sep. 1853                  20 Jan. 1903

Note: There are 12 or 13 graves unaccounted for in the cemetery. Some of the
graves have wooden markers. Before 1967 they had deteriorated and removed.
In 1967 a concrete cylinder at each grave head and at each fence corner had
been placed. By 1976 the fence all improvised were removed unauthorized. In
1990 the site was revisited and the six monuments were still there.
(From page 68 Vol. 1 Cemetery Inscriptions of Webster Parish Compiled by
John C. & Wanda V. Head).

July 22, 2004

I was at the cemetery only twice--around 1940, 5 years old. Went with Dad and several of his cousins for a maintenance work day.              

 I recall a serene place--fenced with swinging iron gate, mowed and weeded, etc. It was in a non-settled area, as opposed to now.   Next, around 1980 when we moved back South (El Dorado)  Mother took Brother Don and me for neither of us could find it.           

Depressing--fence gone, vandalizing of markers, grown up with brush, neighbor's yard encroached on some grave sites.