Historic Methodist Cemetery

HISTORIC METHODIST CEMETERY
POWDER SPRINGS, GEORGIA
1847

The Methodist Cemetery was established in 1847 and is located on the east side of Old Austell Road approximately one mile from historic downtown Powder Springs. It is sometimes referred to as the “old cemetery” and often confused with the neighboring cemeteries across the street – Powder Springs City Cemetery and the Powder Springs Memorial Gardens Cemetery.

The earliest marked burial is dated 1847 and is that of Samuel Cobb Scott born 1776. Samuel was a Captain in the war of 1812 from Abbeville, S.C. He and his wife Jane (who died 1866) are buried at the rear of the cemetery near the wood line that separates the cemetery from the shopping center. Their graves are sunken and marked with field stones. There are also some unmarked graves.

The first Methodist Church was a log cabin that was located on the south side of the present cemetery. The land was owned by Elisha Lindley (1816-1876) and Jane Scott Lindley (1813-1885), who were Charter members of the Methodist Church. They gave this land for both the “Church Building” and the “Methodist Cemetery”. This information was gathered by Sarah Frances Miller for a ‘History of The Powder Springs Methodist Church’ in the 1970’s and is in “A Brief History of the Powder Springs First United Methodist Church” written by Richard T. Huber, Sr., published in 2010.

The Church was officially organized in 1844 and a frame building was constructed on the lot where the present church sets. This land was given by Johnathan Lindley, Jr. (1808-1868), also a charter member.

In the Methodist Cemetery are buried a number of the early families of Powder Springs. These are Baggett’s, Butner’s, Camp’s, DuPre(e)’s, Florence’s, Furr’s, Lindley’s, Landrum’s, Miller’s, Murray’s, McEachern’s, Nestlehutt’s, Ragsdale’s, Rice’s, and Stovall’s. These included merchants of various trades, businessmen, farmers, mayors, and doctors.

There are graves at the very back of the cemetery in the woods that are said to be those of slaves. At one time they were marked with field stones.

Elisha Hamilton Lindley (1816-1876) and Jane Scott Lindley (1813-1885), charter members of the Methodist Church; Johnathan Lindley, Jr. (1808-1868) and Uriah Mathews (1826-1911) Powder Springs first Undertaker in 1850.

Mayor’s of Powder Springs: W. W. Scott (1845-1930); J. H. Lewis (1876- 1946): Frank Furr (1922-1955); Robert Hubert Lindley (1888-1965) and Harry Miller (1896-1975). These are just a few of the Mayors who may be buried in this cemetery.

George David Miller (1867-1955) was one of the first rural male carriers for Powder Springs in the early 1900’s and a City Councilman. The buggy he used to deliver the mail is on display at the Seven Springs Museum. Harry Miller (1896-1975) delivered mail from 1918-1928 who’s route included delivering to the A & M School in Macland (McEachern Schools). Ezma D. Lindley (1879-1950) was Postmaster 1923-1928. Roberta Murray (1888- 1972) was a Postmistress 1915-1922 and known as the first historian of Powder Springs.

Doctor’s: J. D. Middlebrooks (1861-1938) and a City Councilman in the early 1900’s.; J. S. Vaughan (1862-1923) and a City Councilman in the early 1900’s. Robert Rootes Murray (1836-1909), Confederate Army Surgeon and father of Roberta Murray (1888-1972); and William Edgar Butner (1868-1927).

T. N. Lindley (1858-1937) was Marshal in 1901. Thomas A. Parks Lindley (1849-1916) was Marshal in 1900 and 1906. Dotson A. Bennett (1892-1943) was Marshal and night watchman in 1934.

T. N. (Thomas Newell Lindley) (1858-1937) became Undertaker and owner of the funeral home in 1899 when Uriah Matthews sold the business to him. Mr. Lindley had a store and bookstore with a casket room on the back of this business in downtown. At his death, his grandson Pick Lindley took over the funeral home business.

Seaborn Epperson (S.E.) Smith (1871-1940) was the depot agent for the Southern Railway Depot. In 1923 he was also the President of the Bank of Powder Springs. He has a “Woodman of the World” marker. John L. Calloway (1865-1888) and Lindley Murray (1869-1889) both worked for the East Tennessee, Virginia, and Georgia Railroad. Both men were crushed between railway cars in accidents and killed.

John A. Lewis (1853-1926) owned one of the cotton gins in town and built the two story brick building downtown around 1900, that is referred to as The Lewis Building.

William LaFayette Florence (1873-1949) wife Agnes Lindley (1875-1927) His first job was on the East Tennessee, Virginia And Georgia Railroad as a Conductor. Mr. Florence also was the owner of W. L. Florence Construction Company. In 1941, he and his company graded, created and built Rickenbacker Air Field and Highway 41 from Marietta to Atlanta. In 1942 this airfield then became part of the Marietta Aircraft Plant which was Bell Aircraft and better known as the “Bell Bomber Plant”. The air field was later shared by Bell’s successor Lockheed-Martin and Dobbins Air Force Base and the Naval Air Station of Atlanta. His company also built many of the access roads for the plant as well as the railroad underpass. Mr. Florence was also a farmer in Powder Springs where he raised various crops and cattle. Florence Road was named for him and his farm which was where the farm was located.

Francis C. House (1825-1883) was member of Atlanta City Council but resigned in April of 1861 to join the Confederate Army. A few years after the war, Mr. House moved to Powder Springs where he purchased a lot with two buildings at the back of the property in downtown Powder Springs. The two existing building were originally used as a Wells Fargo Way Station, stables and blacksmith shops as early the 1830’s. Mr. House then built the front part of the building facing Marietta Street which he used for his carpentry business. His sons continued to use the back parts as blacksmith’s shops. This is the current Country Store building.

J. B. McCutcheons (1906-1973) was Umpire for Powder Springs Baseball Team in the 1920’s and 1930’s. Ralph Linton “Len” Spratlin (1925 2015) member of the Powder Springs Baseball Team in1947 and 1948. Walter McElreath (1867-1951) was the founder of the Atlanta Historical Society and donated two million dollars to the Society. Mr. McElreath was admitted to the Bar in Marietta but lived and practiced law in Atlanta. He was also a member of the Georgia General Assembly 1909-1912.

On the far right side of the cemetery is a grave that sits alone. The marker is a mid-sized tombstone topped with a carving of a parachute that reads: Reo Flock Russell, June 19, 1909 – Nov 2, 1936. Reo Flock was a ‘barnstormer’ during the 1920’s and 1930’s. She was a trick airplane performer, stunt parachutist, as well as an expert Skeet Shooter. Reo loved the landscape of Powder Springs from the air, which was part of the flight pattern for airplanes at that time. It is said that this is the reason Reo wanted to be buried here.

Sarah Frances Miller (1918-2002) was a Powder Springs Historian whose family were long time residences of the Powder Springs community. She was an educator for over 35 years in Cobb County; a charter member and President of the Seven Springs Historical Society; the Historian of the Mimosa Garden Club; one of the historians of the First Baptist Church and charter member of and Co-Secretary and Treasurer of the Powder Springs Senior Center. Miss Miller was the driving force behind the creation of the Seven Springs Museum where she served as President and curator for many years. She also co-authored the cookbook “Seven Springs Sampler” which is a history of Powder Springs with drawings of some the older homes along with recipes plus information about herbs. Miss Miller was also named the South Cobb Citizen of the Year on May 21, 1992 by the Austell/South Cobb Rotary Club and the South Cobb Division of the Cobb County Chamber of Commerce. She received an award/statue of a bronze Eagle on an American Flag.

There are also numerous Veterans from various wars buried here. These are only a few of those Veterans. A ‘Thank You’ always to all our Veterans no matter when or how they served their country.

War of 1812 – Samuel Cobb Scott (1776-1847).

War Between the States (American Civil War) – Elisha H. Lindley (1816-1876) and his son William R. Lindley (1840-1863). They both served in the same Company in the Confederate Army. William was killed in battle on 11-29-1863 and his father brought his body back home for final burial. William J. Manning (1843-1915); Elijah N. Ragsdale (1814-1909); Bellington Sanders Florence (1829-1887); and William Y. Stovall (1824-1900). James Rice (1810-1889) enlisted in 1863 at Powder Springs.

World War I – George M. Furr (1891-1980); Grady H. Furr (1897-1976); Robert Hubert Lindley (1888-1965); John R. Middlebrooks (1889 1921). Thomas J. McDonald (1887-1960); John Hansel Baggett, Jr. (1897-1977); William R. Bennett (1890-1948) medic: Luke T. Mizell (1878 1938) Coast Guard (1899-1903) served in the Philippines in 1900.

World War II – Milton Bowden (1920-1981); Robert Murray Middlebrooks Turner (1917-1997); Billy Dean Roper (1927-1981); Robert P. Boyd (1910-1979)

There are memorial markers throughout the cemetery honoring the lives and families of those buried here in their final resting place.

The Methodist Cemetery has approximately 900 graves. There is still room for many other graves, even today in 2018.

All those buried here have left our community a better place just by choosing to settle and living their lives here.

Author: curator

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