This picture of Great Grandma Lottie Posey Hill and Great Grandpa Lamar Hill hung with prominence over the grand fireplace in the grand room of the original family home in lower St. John Colony. The current location of the home site is behind the structured home of Doray (great grandson) and Diane Hill. Great Grandma and Great Grandpa’s likeness were originally housed in a frame that was an antique oval shape. The overlap of the glass in this frame exaggerated a grandiose larger than life representation of the attractive couple. The exterior of this enclosed frame glistened with highlights of gold as it extolled its precious historical vibrance.
Great Grandpa Lamar Hill Transitioned September 11, 1931. Lottie Posey Hill transitioned June 22, 1950.
An excerpt from the book “From a Prince to a Slave”, written by Webster Gregg suggests that Great Grand pa Lamar was born into slavery. That he was the grand descendant of an African Prince, named Zula Tom. He was the son of the descendant to Zula Tom, Edward Hill. Narrative describes that the slave master for Edward Hill was cruel and unyielding. His name was Branch. Gre Lamar Hill was enslaved by a cruel slave master by the name of Shaw. The narrative of Webster Gregg infers that Great Grand pa Lamar was strong willed. This slave masters, Shaw savagely beat him, or had him beat to break his will. Webster Gregg’s excerpts, from my uncle, Emzo Hill, describes the severity of the whip marks that were still evident on the back of Grand pa Lamar many years post slaver. Uncle Emzo explained that many years later, Grandpa Lamar remained so traumatized, he was still unable to discuss the beating that he endured.
Great Grandpa Lamar Hill and Lottie Posey Hill married December 15, 1880. Born to this legacy were eleven children. The names are as follows including members of their immediate descendants.
- Mary Jane Elizabeth Hill Born October 11, 1887. Transitioned September 24, 1911 (No Heir)
- Laura Hill Watson Born February 20, 1882 (Twin to Luella) Transitioned October 5, 1985. Heirs 1. Odessa Davis (deceased) 2. Mr. Henry Watson (deceased) , 3. Mrs. Lucy Bells Simms (deceased) and Mr. Clarence Watson (deceased).
- Luella Hill (Aunt Lou) Born February 20, 1882. (Twin to Laura) Transitioned February 26, 1964. No Heirs.
- Eliza Hill Robertson Harris Born September 25, 1884. Transitioned November 27, 1968. Four Heirs. 1. Frank Robertson, 2. Lue Anna Robertson, 3. Willie Robertson, and 4. Bob Robertson.
- Samuel Hill Born April 23, 1886. Transitioned July 29, 1952 (No Heir)
- Silvia Hill Born April 6, 1888. Transition October 28, 1975. (Twin to Larkin) 1 Heir Olevia Hill (Roland) Williams (Deceased)
- Larkin Hill Born July 27, 1888. Transitioned June 22, 1953. (Twin to Sylvia) Four heirs 1. Annie O. Roland, 2. Mary Sanders, 3. Ruth Morgan, and 4. Raymond Hill.
- Henry Fletcher Hill Born July 27, 1891 (Twin brother to Henrietta Hill) Transitioned October 18, 1978, He was baptized by Rev Anthony Winn at an early age and his ministry began soon after. (Rev A. Winn donated the 13 and ¾ acres for the Juneteenth Emancipation celebration grounds. This land was dedicated to this purpose in 1872 by Rev John Winn and the Deacons from the St. John Regular Baptist Church.) Rev Henry F. Hill served as the Pastor of Mt. Pleasant Baptist Church, and served as the Pastor of Alum Creek Baptist Church (Del Valley) on alternate Sundays. Popo was a healing minister. I once witnessed him preach until a woman who was unable to walk, crippled, and wheelchair bound, stand at her chair during his fiery sermon, and walk.
At the age of six years of age, President Marshall Hill chauffeured Rev. Hill to his church services. Many comments in the community would suggest that Rev. Hill had a self-driving car until they saw the small head peeping through the steering wheel just over the dashboard driving the car.
Rev Henry Fletcher Hill was educated. He graduated from Blinn College in Brenham, Texas, and from Tillotson College in Austin, Texas. Rev. Henry Fletcher Hill Married Lennie Jane Flemings on July 11, 1915. To this legacy there were five children born.
1. Rev. Henry Edward Hill, (old Edward from Hills Prairie Plantation (Great granddad) Born August 16, 1916, Transition February 9, 2012.
2. Emza Lee Hill Born August 14, 1919 Transition July 2, 2005,
3. Lenzo Howard Hill born September 5, 1920, Transition January 7, 2018), 4. Henrietta Hill, and
5. Philemon Lamar Hill Born November 13, 1925, Transition October 18, 2005.
Much later in life Rev. Henry F. Hill married Genertta Carter Roland Hill and to this union no children were born. Rev. Henry Hill’s funeral was officiated by the late Rev. S.L. Davis on Saturday October 21, 1978, at St. John Regular Baptist Church. Rev. Hill is interred at the historic St. John Colony, Zion Union Cemetery. He lies next to Lennie Jane Flemings Hill until the great awakening.
Rev. Henry Edward Hill is the Daddy of our current Juneteenth President, Marshall B. Hill. He was born in St. John Colony. He was the caretakers of his Hill family in lower St. John. As a young Daddy, Rev. Hill loved fast cars and longed to be a Negro League Baseball player.
Rev. Henry E. Hill married Reonetta Marie Franks Hill on September 27, 1940. This union lasted 71 years on earth. This union was blessed with eleven children and thy are as follows.
- Eddie Marie Hill Thompson Glover,
- Allie Rose Hill Washington (Transitioned November 30, 1968),
- Ester Jo Hill Hargrove,
- Rev. Henry Edward Hill Jr.
- Betty Joyce Hill (Transitioned 3 days after birth)
- Arvil William Hill
- Doray Hill
- Josephine Hill Bunton
- Rosie Lenear Hill Darby
- Marshall Brent Hill,
- Anthony James Hill.
Rev. Henry E. Hill was called to preach in 1968 shortly after the death of his 2nd daughter Allie Rose Washington. He earned a Theology Degree from Guadalupe Seminary in Seguin, Texas. He was the proud pastor of St. Mary’s Missionary Baptist Church in Creedmoor, Texas for thirty-seven years and until the church dissolved in 2009.
- Henrietta Hill Born July 27, 1891 (Twin Sister to Rev Henry F. Hill) no record of death.
- Twin Boys born December 14, 1893, transitioned December 28, 1893
The family home was an expansive structure with spacious rooms and a high porch. It stood grandly without the embellishment of whitewash. The interior of the home hosted artifacts such as a phone on the wall and other elements that are indicative of periods of prosperity. An abandoned car in the yard evidenced another form of mobility that is counter to the horse in buggy. During periods of my childhood, this car was the anchor for a type of beastly dog however, the car still displayed class.
This homestead hosted annual family reunions for the descendants of the heritage of Lamar and Lottie Hill for many years. Correspondence retained by my dear mother, Reonetta Hill, suggests that as late as 1986, family socialization, and unity were still desired, pursued and sought by members of our precious Hill family. These correspondences pled for togetherness, corporative processes, and paying an appropriate homage to a legacy that has been plagued with divineness and self-promotion.
Rosie L. Darby