Highland News Leader

Dugger Cemetery Memorial Day services to honor veterans of all wars

Descendants of Revolutionary War veterans William McAdams gather around his new grave marker at Dugger Cemetery during a recent Memorial Day celebration there.
Descendants of Revolutionary War veterans William McAdams gather around his new grave marker at Dugger Cemetery during a recent Memorial Day celebration there.

Dugger Cemetery Memorial Day services will be Sunday, May 29 at 4 p.m. Please bring your lawn chairs.

The honor guard will place the colors. The service will be remembering all who are buried there, plus the centennial of Belle Umble (Mrs. John) Riggs, who died Jan. 16, 1916, and Sarah E. (Mrs. Thomas) Rule, who died Nov. 16, 1916.

This will be followed by honoring the veterans of all vars:

▪ Revolutionary War, William McAdams;

▪ War of 1812, John Castleberry Dugger, who was also in the Black Hawk War;

▪ Wesley Dugger, War of 1812, who has a new marker, courtesy of the Daughters of the American Revolution;

▪ Everard Elliff (Ellis), Aaron S. Rule and Jordan Uzzell, all also of the War of 1812.

There are also Civil War veterans buried in Dugger Cemetery. Hiram Dee, who was wounded Jan. 15, 1863 and died at home, March 5, 1863, has his final resting place there. Henry Rule of 144th Illinois Infantry Regiment is also buried in Dugger.

We have also been informed that Alfred Ruyle (Rule) Jr., 1830-1873, also served in the Civil War and is buried at Dugger, but we have not found a tombstone. Do you have any information? Do you have any of Alfred Ruyle’s service information? Maybe a tombstone can be secured.

This reading will be followed by the Highland American Legion and Veterans of Foreign Wars Honor Guard and Rifle Squad, and Taps by the Highland bugler. The honor guard will then remove the colors.

Directions to cemetery

Dugger Cemetery is located at 10901 Lake Road, St. Jacob Township, in rural Highland. From the Marine-St. Jacob Road, take Lake Road, east to 10901 Lake Road. Then turn, north (left).

Or, from Highland, take Broadway west to U.S. Highway 40. Go northwest across Highway 40, this is called Lake Road. Go just over two miles to 10901 Lake Road, turn right (north).

The lane goes back toward the cemetery and go up to the front yard of the home. A sign will be in the yard where you turn right, and just past the house, to the east, you angle northeast, through an open gate. Follow the roadway up the hill and about  ¼ mile to the 2 ½ -acre Dugger Cemetery and parking lot.

We hope to see other veterans, relatives and friends at the services.

Join the Dugger Cemetery Association

Memberships for Dugger Cemetery Association are available. Memberships are $10 per year for an individual, $25 for a family. A “Sustaining Membership” is $50 per year. A “Lifetime Membership” is $500, and a “Perpetual Membership” is $1,000. Hope you can join us.

About the cemetery

The area around the Dugger Cemetery is owned by Dave and Cathleen Rutz. The home and other acreage is owned by Lenora Mitcherson. They, plus Carl Rutz, who cuts the parking lot for Memorial Day, and Bill Curry, who cuts and trims the cemetery and drive way all summer, have been so helpful to the cemetery.

The Dave Rutz has given the cemetery information from the Poggemoellers, the previous owners. This information had been received from their daughter, that her mom and dad kept. This information was from families of Dugger, Herrin, McAlilly, and Elliff, was well as from Josie Faitz, Russell Schoeck, Freeman Schmidt Jr., Otto Ziegler’s daughter, Reba Mathis, Clara Huber and Vera Mick, treasurer in the 1980s and early 1990s, until they disbanded.

We have also received information about Jacob Mueller, an earlier owner, who owned the farm in the 1890s and early 1900s. Shirley Mueller (Mrs. Earl) Anderson wrote: “About the 1890s, Jacob and Malinda Zimmermann Mueller moved to this farm, northeast of St. Jacob, on Lake Road, later called the Poggemoeller Farm.

“Jacob Mueller had five children: Elmer Mueller (Shirley Mueller Anderson’s father), Arthur, Samuel, Lena and Mary (Irma Clementz Liebler’s mother). North of the homestead was the Dugger Cemetery. The road was just a trail getting back to the cemetery. At that time, it was impossible in the winter time, and during the rainy season, to get to the cemetery. (The road is in much better shape now, with a culvert and road builder rock put in the bottoms by the large old swamp oak tree. )

“My father told us the story many times, that in winter, when some one passed away, the coffins were stacked in the barn until after spring. Then the coffins were loaded on a spring wagon and taken to their burial site. Naturally, the graves were dug by hand by his father, my father and his brothers.”