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Houston County, Georgia
Evergreen Cemetery
Tombstone Transcriptions
by William A. Mills

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Evergreen Cemetery is located in Houston County, within the city of Perry, Georgia.  The entrance to the cemetery is located on Main Street,not far from the bridge that crosses Big Indian Creek.  This book is comprised of transcripts from tombstones at Evergreen Cemetery, dating from 1827 until
1 January 1997, a period of 170 years.

In 1827, only a few years after Perry, Georgia was incorporated (1824), a Methodist Church was built on the current site of Evergreen Cemetery.  The land around the church became the burial grounds.  About twenty years later, a new church was built a few blocks northeast of the growing cemetery.

As of 1 January 1997, there are 1,892 marked, and 290 unmarked gravesites at Evergreen Cemetery.  These almost 2,200 gravesites now occupy 12.3 acres of land.  Currently, the City of Perry, Georgia maintains the cemetery.

Evergreen Cemetery is divided into more than 575 family burial plots which vary in size.  Some of these plots have more than a dozen graves, while others have only one or none.  The majority of the plots are arranged alphabetically in sections.  Many of the plots at the rear of the cemetery are arranged numerically.  The arrangement of the graves in this book, corresponds with a survey plat of the cemetery, which is at the City of Perry municipal building.

Many of the tombstones, especially from the 1800s, contain important genealogical information about those buried at Evergreen Cemetery.  The names of the parents, places of birth and death, and often, biographical information are inscribed on the various monuments.

The Houston Home Journal newspaper contains many obituary notices about deaths that occurred in distant parts of the country, and how the body was transported by train, back to Perry, Georgia to be buried at Evergreen Cemetery.  These places included California, Washington, Texas, Florida, Maine, New York, etc.

A beautiful stone archway at the entrance to Evergreen Cemetery, which was erected in 1928, is inscribed with the following information:

"Evergreen Cemetery 1928.  This arch was erected and presented to the City of Perry as a gift from Dr. Charles R. Mann, who requested that a certain sum of money from his estate be given to the city.  His heirs chose this as an appropriate way of carrying out his request, and at the same time, of commemorating one who dearly loved his city, county, and fellow citizens, and whose faithful and skillful ministrations to the sick, enshrined him in the hearts of multitudes."
The inside portion of the archway is inscribed with a poem about Evergreen Cemetery, which was written by Edwin Martin in 1886.  Throughout the years, other nice additions have been made to the cemetery, such as benches, a gazebo, and a beautiful sundial.

Evergreen Cemetery has a serene elegance in the way that the natural beauty combines with the man-made monuments.  Huge evergreen and oak trees, some towering over ninety feet tall, have trails of Spanish moss draping from them.  On a breezy day, the moss dances gracefully in the wind.  A view of the cemetery during autumn usually yields bright hues of color from the changing leaves.

There are many family plots that are bordered with beautiful ornamental fences constructed of iron.  The gates of these fences often bear the name of the owner of the plot.  There are also many burial plots that are enclosed with brick and stone borders.

Many of the hundreds of stone monuments at Evergreen Cemetery have extensive artwork on them.  Usually, the name of the manufacturer is engraved on the stone.  Many of these early monuments came from Macon, Georgia, and others from Americus.  Even though the natural elements have taken their toll on the very early monuments, most of them are still reasonably legible.

A large number of the early pioneer families of Houston County, Georgia have chosen Evergreen Cemetery as their final resting place.  There are many prominent judges, lawyers, politicians, businessmen, and war veterans buried at the cemetery, now spanning a period of 170 years.  Also, there are at least 130 Confederate veterans buried throughout many sections of the cemetery.  Some of these graves are marked with only a small stone inscribed with "C.V." and the name of the veteran.  Often, the first name is marked with an initial, and there are no birth or death dates listed. 

The format of this book corresponds with a plat of the cemetery, which is included herein.  Starting with section "A", the family burial plots are listed in alphabetical, and then numerical order.  The various graves listed in each family plot, start with the upper left-hand corner of the plot, and then proceed from left to right.  The name of the deceased is printed in bold lettering, and followed by the year of birth and death (in parentheses).  Various other information is listed, as well as epitaphs.  Many of the epitaphs are Biblical verses, but some are eloquent poems and testimonials about the deceased.  These epitaphs are printed in italics.  If a question mark (?) follows a name or date, this indicates that this is how the inscription was interpreted by this compiler.  Please remember, many of the older tombstones have been very weathered by the elements.

The following abbreviations are utilized in this book: b - born. d - died.  CSA - Confederate States Army veteran.  All dates are arranged in a genealogical format, such as: January l, 1997 is 1 Jan 1997.  A full name index is listed at the end of the book.

It is hopeful that this book will prove to be useful to those who are researching their ancestors from Houston County, Georgia, as well as those trying to find a particular gravesite.  Evergreen Cemetery is a huge cemetery, and it would take a person several days just to read all of the information inscribed on the tombstones there.  This compiler expended over 400 hours transcribing and organizing the information for this book.  Now, with the use of this book, it is possible for you to take an imaginary tour of Evergreen Cemetery from anywhere in the world.

Even though perpetual care is performed at Evergreen Cemetery, a cemetery's existence depends on the descendants of those who are buried there.  They are the ones who bring the flowers and the flags to place on the graves of their ancestors.  And, they are the ones who also bring their children and grandchildren so that they will know who came before them.

After spending several days at Evergreen Cemetery, I was inspired to write a poem entitled, The Spirit of Evergreen Cemetery.  This historic cemetery is a tangible link to Houston County and Perry's past.

I would like to thank the trustees of the R.J. Taylor, Jr. Foundation, who awarded me a grant to assist in the non-labor costs of compiling this publication, and the printing expenses.

William A. Mills


Copyright 1997

This work as been graciously shared with the Houston County, GAGenWeb Project by Wm. A. Mills who has been a great asset to the genealogical community of Houston County, GA.

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