Van Wert Cemetery, Polk County, Georgia

The following history and description of Van Wert Cemetery is taken from Polk County, Georgia Cemeteries, In the Corners of Forever, Volume II, pages 191-192 compiled by Ralph and Jane Ayers.

This cemetery is probably one of the oldest public cemeteries in Northwest Georgia, and has attracted quite a number of persons in many stations of life to it.  State Officials have termed it one of the most interesting spots in the state and writers, for years, have extolled its uniqueness and its historical value.  Van Wert at one time was the county seat of Paulding County and when Polk County was formed in 1851, Van Wert lay just inside the county line.  Thus Paulding County had to select a new county seat, it becoming Dallas, Georgia.  Later the county seat of Polk County was changed to Cedartown.

Many of the dead who lie in the cemetery, were born in Wales during the 18th century.  Their graves are marked with slate tomb stones bearing epitaphs written in the Welsh language.  These slate stones were fashioned from chunks of slate quarried from the quarries that the Welsh settlers had come to Van Wert to develop into an industry after 1840.  This cemetery is a very large one and is to the rear of the Van Wert Baptist Church (now in the hands of the Polk County Historical Society).  It extends up the hill to the rear and the area there is marked with only slate stone – no inscriptions.  The Van Wert Church is well over 100 years old.


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