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MARKER DATABASE
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Near Polk City in Polk County, Florida — The American South (South Atlantic)
 

Green Pond Baptist Church and Cemetery

 
 
Green Pond Baptist Church and Cemetery Marker image. Click for full size.
By Dean Moss McCracken, November 18, 2016
1. Green Pond Baptist Church and Cemetery Marker
Inscription. The community that developed here was named Green Pond by A.T. Williams, because it reminded him of his home in Green Pond, SC. Early settlers Leroy Smith, Stephen Hancock, George Ritter, R.W. Hammond, and J.B. Rushing, donated land for a church, cemetery and school. The cemetery was established in 1879 when two infants, Hart and Williams, were buried here. The earliest recorded church meeting occurred in May 1886. Early church meetings took place in brush arbor in the woods north of the present church building. On September 21, 1894, Green Pond Baptist Church was organized with six members: Abraham Taylor Williams, Pencheeta Hancock Williams, Eliza Jane Williams, Havilah Pencheeta Knowles, Henry Littleton Meeks and R.W. Hammond. These charter members signed a church covenant, agreeing to "to keep house for God by living together in church capacity. To watch over each other for good, pray with and for each other and endeavor to discipline for the correction of discord members. We will do as best we can the Lord being our help."

The family names on the early church roll included Williams, Knowles, Meeks, Lanier, Combee, Roberts, Judy, Grimes, Hunt, Byrd, Bridges, Woodard, Tyer, Raulerson, and Rushing. Descendants of these families still live in the area.
 
Erected 2014 by The Friends
Green Pond Church and Marker image. Click for full size.
By Dean Moss McCracken, November 18, 2016
2. Green Pond Church and Marker
The current Green Pond Baptist Church looking north west.
of the Meeks Family.
 
Location. 28° 19.635′ N, 81° 50.63′ W. Marker is near Polk City, Florida, in Polk County. Marker is on Green Pond Church Road north of Greenpond Road, on the right when traveling north. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 5965 Green Pond Church Road, Polk City FL 33868, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 2 other markers are within 16 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Dean R. Gilmore (approx. 11 miles away); Socrum (approx. 15.1 miles away).
 
Regarding Green Pond Baptist Church and Cemetery. The Green Swamp. The Green Swamp is the headwaters of the Withlacoochee, Peace, Ocklawaha and Hillsborough Rivers and is a large part of the Florida aquifer. Green Pond is just outside the Green Swamp. The first white settlers of the Green Pond area were Abraham Taylor Williams and his wife Pencheeta Hancock Williams from Green Pond in the Colleton District of South Carolina ca. 1873. Seminole Indians had lived in this area for well over 100 years prior. The Armed Occupation Act of 1842 opened central Florida to white settlers. After the Third Seminole War or the Billy Bowlegs (Holata Micco) War ended in 1858, Indian threats were gone as most of the Seminoles were removed to Oklahoma. Less than 500 Seminoles
Green Pond Baptist Church And Cemetery image. Click for full size.
By Dean Moss McCracken, November 18, 2016
3. Green Pond Baptist Church And Cemetery
Approaching from the east on Green Pond Road from SR33.
remained in South Florida.

Green Pond Cemetery. The Hart boy and the Williams boy were the first buried in the Green Pond Cemetery. Two year old Peter Williams died of diphtheria in 1879 and his marker is in the center section of the cemetery under the shade of a very old cypress tree. His grave site is watched over by a small statue of Jesus flanked by two children.

There are no Hart family markers in the cemetery or the cemetery records. The Hart boy is undoubtedly buried here but, records and field work do not provide proof of a burial location or marker.

Sources:
Brown, Cantor Jr. "In the Midst of All That Makes Life Worth Living: Polk County, Florida, to 1940." Sentry Press. Tallahassee, Fl. 2001.
Mahon, John K. "History of the Second Seminole War." University of Florida Press, Gainesville. 1967
Polk County, Florida Cemeteries. Vol. VII. Imperial Polk Genealogical Society. 2010. Polk County Historical and Genealogical Library. Bartow, Florida. November 18, 2016.
Green Swamp Wilderness Preserve. www.swfwmd.state.fl.us/recreation/areas/greenswamp.html
Field Work. Dean Moss McCracken and Ken Breathitt. Lakeland, Fl. November 18, 2016.

 
Categories. Cemeteries & Burial SitesChurches & ReligionSettlements & Settlers
 
Green Pond Cemetery Statue image. Click for full size.
By Dean Moss McCracken, November 18, 2016
4. Green Pond Cemetery Statue
This statue of a Florida Cowboy was erected in 2006. Click image to read plaque.
Green Pond Cemetery Grave Stone image. Click for full size.
By Dean Moss McCracken, November 18, 2016
5. Green Pond Cemetery Grave Stone
Peter E. Williams Marker. One of the two first people interred in the Green Pond Cemetery. 1879.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on November 27, 2016. This page originally submitted on November 20, 2016, by Dean Moss McCracken of Lakeland, Florida. This page has been viewed 172 times since then and 69 times this year. Last updated on November 23, 2016, by Dean Moss McCracken of Lakeland, Florida. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on November 20, 2016, by Dean Moss McCracken of Lakeland, Florida. • Bernard Fisher was the editor who published this page.
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