This cemetery contains graves of early white settlers and their slaves who came to the Nacoochee and Sautee Valleys and the Dukes Creek area in the 1820's/30's.
For many years, slaves were buried on the hill in an area that is now wooded.
The church maintains an ongoing inventory of over 700 identified graves. This cemetery registry is now searchable by the public on this website.
This cemetery contains graves of early white settlers and their slaves who came to the Nacoochee and Sautee Valleys and the Dukes Creek area in the 1820's/30's. There were over 60 families who came during that time and their names are scattered over the hill.
One such group included the families of Jesse Richardson and Major Edward Williams. Jesse Richardson was about 60 years old when he arrived here. His grave is marked with both clergy and military symbols.
Major Edward William's wife died in 1833 and was buried on the hill of what became the cemetery. The following year, Major Williams deeded the land (6 acres) for a cemetery and church. See the historic deed.
There has been a church on the property since the 1830's. Relatives and descendents of that congregation as well as many community members have been buried here ever since with the more recent graves in the front part of the cemetery.
Visitors are welcome. We are happy to share the information we have and are always interested in learning more of the history represented here. Read more...
Other than a few old family sites, there is no further space in the cemetery for burial. However, with prior arrangement, there is space in the Columbarium for interment of ashes and the Remembrance Garden is available for the spreading of ashes.
In 2012 the Nacoochee Remembrance Garden (picture at right) opened for the spreading of ashes. It occupies a space in the oldest section of the cemetery where a small garden and monument in keeping with the older graves has been constructed. The wall around it is just the right height to sit, enjoy the view, remember and contemplate.
The public is invited to consider arranging for future use of the Remembrance Garden or the Columbarium. Please contact the church office (401)307-1749 for further information.
Some of the early families brought slaves. For many years, slaves were buried on the hill in an area that is now wooded. The graves, if marked at all, were marked only with fieldstones.
In the hard times following the Civil War, many records were lost so the only knowledge was oral tradition that there were slave graves in that part of the cemetery.
Only recently have people started the deep research to reveal as many pieces of the history of the period as possible. In 2011, a research team from the Georgia Mountains Regional Commission located 120 gravesites in the wooded area where oral tradtion located the slave gravesites.
Iron crosses (see picture) have been placed on each burial site located. It was not possible to identify any names. Both paper and CD copies of the report are at the church. Read the report.
The Onesimus Monument [oh-NESS-ee-muss] was placed near the slave graves in 1992 as a joint project of the Bean Creek Baptist Church and the Nacoochee Methodist Church to honor those buried and unknown.
Onesimus, a revered figure in many denominations, was a runaway slave, whom the apostle Paul received to the faith of Christ while in prison, regarding him as a son of whom he had become father [Epistle to Philemon]. The white marble Onesimus Monument honors those descendants of Onesimus and his kin.
Visitors are welcome. We are happy to share the information we have and are always interested in learning more of the history represented here. SEARCH registry now »
Emily Anthony and Ann Banke completed locator maps for all existing graves in 2011. The maps and a registry of all graves is kept current on this website. The public is welcome to download the maps and search the registry database.
For search purposes the downloadable maps of the cemetery consist of one overview and six section maps:
You can search the registry for gravesites by name, by name with uncertain spelling ("sounds like"), or by family plot. SEARCH registry »