In 1879 William Lee Henderson (b. 1808), his wife Eleanor Shelby (b. 1817), and their nine children moved from their Alabama home to Texas by wagon train. Church records indicate worship services were held in a shelter built by the Hendersons shortly after they settled here. At the Hendersons' request the East Texas Presbytery officially recognized the new congregation as the Lindale Presbyterian Church in March 1881. Its name was changed to Bethesda in 1885, for a church the Hendersons had established in Perry County, Alabama. William's son, Franklin Smith Henderson, was buried here on family land in 1881. Other interments near Franklin's grave site, including that of his father William in 1883, formed the nucleus of this cemetery, which from its beginning had been a community burial place. A cemetery association was organized in 1905. Among those buried here are veterans of the Civil War, World War I, and World War II. The congregation erected a new sanctuary at this site in 1895 which was enlarged in 1959. Descendants of the original Henderson family and of other area pioneers buried in the cemetery have gathered here each summer for many decades for a reunion and other religious and social activities.
Copyright © StoppingPoints.com, 2010. All Rights Reserved.