In 1828, Pleasant Hill saw the arrival of the first settlers to the area and all of Cass County, then called Van Buren County. Records were filed in 1844 making Pleasant Hill a village with about 40 inhabitants. Old Town existed along No. 7 Highway from the cemetery to Maple Lane.
As you come into Pleasant Hill from the north on No. 7 Highway, you will find at 1710 the old Henley home used as local headquarters for the Union during the destruction of Pleasant Hill under Order No. 11.
View short steam train movie
|Tom Lea Mural And Town Cemetery|
A mural by Tom Lea depicting a confederate family's return home after Order No. 11 may be seen in the lobby of the Post Office at 124 Veterans Parkway. Just down the way is the Pleasant Hill Cemetery where a marker of Old Town stands. Within the cemetery are also the mass graves of Federals discovered only recenly by researchers. A marker was placed with full ceremony September 21, 1986, to honor these men.
Old Town was the site of commercial Pleasant Hill until 1865. With the coming of the railroad business picked up enormously. Established firms of Old Town moved south to the current business district engulfing the community of Wyoming. Even houses were picked up and moved to the new location. The current train station built in 1903 replaces the Pacific Union Depot built in 1866.
Pleasant Hill Historical Society Museum
Pleasant Hill has many old buildings now being restored to their original look. One building that hasn't needed restoration is the Pleasant Hill Historical Society's museum. The 1904 stone front was constructed from the three story tower of the Gamble mansion. Mrs. Sallie Gamble, the widow of ex-governor Hamilton R. Gamble, built the mansion in 1866. The store front was built using the stones, arched windows and door of the tower.
For more stories and legends of Pleasant Hill, ask the area merchants. Pleasant Hill is full of history. Along with all the antique and specialty shops located in the historical buildings there is much more to be enjoyed by everyone.