The original Beulah Baptist Church was established at the site of this cemetery in 1815, at the top of the hill. The cemetery is located at the end of Mount Pleasant View Road off Pleasant Grove Road.
Some areas of this old cemetery are separated by families. There appears to be distinct sections for the Orr, Aiken and Shipman families. The oldest section of the cemetery is within the area of the grave site of Joseph Henry, Revolutionary War veteran.
The Orr, Henry, Shipman and Aiken families lived in this section of Henderson and Transylvania counties. Descendants are within both counties. Most persons with graves within this cemetery are descendants of the Henry, Shipman and Orr families.
The Henderson County Cemetery Board has a sign erected with a date of 1840. This date reflects the oldest legible grave stone within the cemetery.
The church was organized out of French Broad Baptist Church. The 15 charter members were Jesse Blythe, Sion Blythe, Robert Jordon, Jeremiah Taylor, Perry Cantrell, Sarah Trammell, Joseph Evans, Joseph Henry, Thomas Henry, E. Hightower, Eli Merrell, Jane Shipman, Jacob Shipman, B. Taylor and Elizabeth Williams.
In March 1843 church members agreed to move Beulah Baptist Church to the mouth of Big Willow Creek in the Big Willow community.
There are approximately 56 legible grave stones within the cemetery. There are approximately 188 field stones with no inscriptions or inscriptions that are not legible.
The oldest legible grave stone within the cemetery is that of Revolutionary War veteran Joseph Henry (1760-1840). His land extended from the Big Willow community, through the community of Etowah and into the old Boyleston (Boylston) community (now part of Mills River and Etowah). As early as 1779 and 1783, he began buying land within today’s Henderson County. He joined the war in June 1780 under Col. William Graham, was drafted again after the Battle of Kings Mountain, serving under Capt. Lofton’s Co., and was discharged before the Battle of Guilford Courthouse.
Some research indicates that he was married three times. It is documented that he was married to Elizabeth Porter in 1800 and married Charlotte Blythe about 1820. The grave site of Charlotte Blythe Henry is at the Beulah Baptist Church Cemetery in the Big Willow community.
One of his daughters also has a grave site within this cemetery. Margaret Henry (1806-1879) married Robert Orr (1800-1880).
The grave site of one of his sons is at the Beulah Baptist Church Cemetery in the Big Willow community: Noah Russell Henry (1818-1897).
Other documented children include Ephraim Henry (1803-1891) who moved to Dade County, Missouri; Alexander P. Henry (1808-1894) who married Malinda Johnson and whose grave site is at Mills River United Methodist Church Cemetery; Robert Henry (1812-1859) whose grave site is at the Bryson Cemetery in Mills River; William Blythe Henry (1821-1868) who married Attilla Brittain and whose grave site is at Boyleston (Boylston) Baptist Church Cemetery; and Rachel Henry (1822-1892) who married Benjamin Franklin Aiken and whose grave site is at Cathey’s Creek Baptist Church Cemetery in Transylvania County.
Grave sites of three of Henry’s documented children have not yet been located. Old family records refer to a Henry Cemetery in the Bowman’s Bluff section of the Big Willow community. Based on the finding of a grave stone for his grandson, J. Thadeus Henry, at today’s Mallett Cemetery it is suspected, but not yet proven, that this area may be the early Henry Cemetery. The three children whose grave stones have not yet been located include: Joseph Henry Jr., born about 1808 who married Rachel Sentell; Albert G. Henry who married Elizabeth Cantrell; and John Henry who married Malinda Williamson.
Orr, Shipman and Aiken
The second oldest legible grave stone within the old cemetery is that of John Orr (1775-1849). John Orr was the son of Revolutionary War veteran Robert Orr whose grave site is at the Orr Cemetery in the Little River community of Transylvania County. John Orr married Jane Clayton (1783-1873). Her grave site is also within this cemetery. She was the daughter of Revolutionary War veteran Lambert Clayton whose grave is at the Davidson River Cemetery in Transylvania County.
Another early grave within the cemetery is that of Melinda Shipman McCall (1830-1863). This is a stone replacing the original grave stone. The month and day of her death is incorrect on the new stone, as her youngest son, Daniel Webster McCall, was born May 17, 1863. Melinda Shipman McCall was the daughter of Hezekiah Shipman and Hannah Rhodes Shipman, and the wife of Sion Blythe Osborne McCall.
The oldest grave with the Aiken surname is that of Eliza Orr Aiken (1824-1879) who married Archibald Aiken (1828-1893).
There are three grave sites within the cemetery for men who served in the Confederate Army. Archibald Aiken (1828-1893), husband of Eliza Orr, enlisted in the 7th Battalion N.C. Cavalry on 7-15-1862. On 8-3-1863, this battalion was consolidated into the 65th Regiment N.C. Troops (6th Regiment N.C. Cavalry). Louis (Lewis) Leander Aiken (1837-1913), husband of Josephine Jane Orr, enlisted in the 7th Battalion N.C. Cavalry on 7-15-1862. He was captured 6-9-1863 during a skirmish at Monticello, Ky., and a prisoner at Johnson’s Island, Ohio. He was exchanged 2-15-1865 at Coxes Landing, Va. Stephen Johnson Morgan (1838-1883), husband of Mary Eugenia Orr, enlisted in the 7th Battalion N.C. Cavalry on 7-15-1862. On 8-3-1863, this battalion was consolidated into the 65th Regiment N.C. Troops (6th Regiment N.C. Cavalry).