Thomas-Fletcher Cemetery

Persons buried in the Thomas-Fletcher Cemetery descend from the first sheriff of Henderson County, the founding fathers of Fletcher, and the first early settlers who owned much of the land in DuPont State Forest.
The grave site of Robert Thomas, the first sheriff of Henderson County who served from 1839 to 1844, is within the cemetery. He was elected in 1838 and served through the formation of Henderson County. His home was located in the Pleasant Grove section of Etowah along the French Broad River. As sheriff he supervised the controversial special election between the River Party and the Road Party to determine a county seat for Henderson County. In 1845 he was a member and chairman of the Court of Pleas and Quarter Sessions (Select Court) that governed Henderson County.
At the time of the Civil War he was among the elder statesmen of the county and one of the most respected men in the western section of Henderson County.
On April 22, 1865, “deserters” from the Civil War arrived at his farm.
“They shot his dogs and set fire to Robert’s fences,” Betty Ann Wilkie wrote in the Henderson County Heritage Book Volume II. “They captured him when he came out of his house to put out the fires. They robbed him and took him out to the cemetery near his home and tied him to a tree. His daughter, Susan, then 16, pled for his life and they still shot him. The murderers were identified, but it is not known if they were ever punished for the crime.”
Tradition states that outlaws, most likely deserters from either the Confederate or Union armies, killed Thomas. But, the date of this incident should be carefully noted. It was one day after the murder of Balis Edney in the eastern section of Henderson County and the night before the Union Army entered Henderson County.
Thomas was the son of John Thomas Jr. and Louvenia Jane Smith Thomas, and the husband of Susan Matilda Reese.
A brother of Robert Thomas, Micajah Smith Thomas, owned the Buck Forest area of today’s DuPont State Forest, where he built a hotel, and whose grave site is within DuPont State Forest.
The Thomas family descends from early pioneer settler John Thomas Sr. who obtained land from 1790 to 1804 that extended from Stone Mountain in today’s DuPont State Forest into the Pleasant Grove area of Etowah and also into today’s Transylvania County.
The grave of Robert Thomas is the oldest grave within this cemetery.
The grave site of John Hooker Fisher is also within this cemetery. He was a descendant of the Hooker family,namesakes of Hooker Falls in DuPont State Forest.
A daughter of Robert Thomas, Susannah Matilda Thomas, married William Pinkney Fletcher, a descendant of the Fletcher family of the town of Fletcher. William Pinkney Fletcher was a Confederate veteran. He enlisted in the 65th Regiment N.C. Troops (6th Regiment N.C. Cavalry), Co. D, on 8-15-1864. He was paroled 5-8-1865 at Athens, Ga. Susannah Matilda Thomas and her husband, William Pinkney Fletcher, obtained much of the Robert Thomas land. Descendants of this couple also have grave sites within the cemetery.
The cemetery has been adopted as a community service project by the Etowah Heritage, an informal research group working on Etowah’s history.

For more information on this cemetery and its adoption by Etowah Heritage, visit