The Greenwood Cemetery in Tell City in Perry County can boast some of the most distinctive sandstone markers in Indiana. Carved from a dark red colored stone,

these stones standout on the hillside. While walking through the graveyard, I spotted this stone signed Hinkel.This stone could have been carved by William Hinkel, a “stonemason” from Hess Darmstadt, who was listed in the 1880s census.

It is interesting to note that the ornate oak

leaves that protrude from the perimeter of the marker are very similar to the leaves that adorn St. Michael Catholic church in Cannelton. It seems reasonable to believe that Hinkel might have worked on this church or was at least inspired by this decorative trim. At the age of 34, Hinkel was drafted into the Union Army in 1863, and at that time he was already skilled as a stone mason.

Draft Role 1863




According to the 1880s census, Hinkel’s wife, Elizabeth was a Swiss immigrant and their eldest daughter Fredericka was “hired out” by the time she was 16 years old.  Elizabeth and William also had a 12-year daughter in 1880, who was enrolled in school in Perry County.

1880s Census, Perry County, Indiana

I would love to hear from family or community members who have more information about this talented artisan. Please contact me.

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1 Comment on William Hinkel, an Indiana Stone Mason

  1. Rich Hinkel says:

    My family was also from Hess Darmstadt

    settled in Schuykill county Pa.

    Jacob Hinkel (Hinkle)


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